Fallout 76 will not launch on Steam—but that doesn't mean all future Bethesda games will avoid releasing on the platform, the publisher has said.
“We did not announce ‘all future Bethesda games will not be on Steam'. That is not what we said. We said ‘this game will be available exclusively on Bethesda.net,'" Bethesda's Pete Hines told IGN yesterday.
Hines said the publisher hasn't decided whether any of its future games, including Doom Eternal, will launch on Steam, and that the Fallout 76 decision was made because of "the kind of game it is—it’s an online, ongoing game".
Launching on Bethesda.net will make it easier for the publisher to communicate with players, he said, adding that on Steam and other platforms, Bethesda can't always access players' contact details.
“We have found very good successes in having those direct relationships with customers, and not been able to see those same benefits when we work through somebody else. And so, specific for Fallout 76, we are going to try this because we think it will give us the best chance to do right by our customers.”
It is "possible" that Fallout 76 will come to Steam in future, Hines said—both The Elder Scrolls Online and The Elder Scrolls: Legends launched on Bethesda.net first before making their way to Valve's platform.
How likely are you to play a game if it's not released on Steam? The PC Gamer team pondered the question here.
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Samuel Horti is a long-time freelance writer for PC Gamer based in the UK, who loves RPGs and making long lists of games he'll never have time to play.