Fallout 76 will be a major step away from the norm for Bethesda’s post-apocalyptic franchise. Multiplayer is bringing a host of changes to the standard formula; where leveling is concerned, the game is introducing several new features. Fallout 76 perk cards will be added, while the traditional S.P.E.C.I.A.L. statistic system is being revised for a multiplayer environment.
The S.P.E.C.I.A.L. statistic system has been a hallmark of the franchise for a long time. Fans will likely be pleased to know that Fallout 76 won’t be getting rid of it, by any means. Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility, and Luck will still be the seven core player statistics. However, the game will introduce a new feature to make use of this system.
As players earn experience points in Fallout 76 and level up, they will accrue perk points; one per level. Gamers who played Fallout 4 will recognize this system. However, the way that players spend perk points in Fallout 76 is very different from the perk chart from Fallout 4. Players can choose to spend each perk point in one of the seven S.P.E.C.I.A.L. categories. When you spend a perk point, instead of choosing a perk from a chart, the game will display three different “Perk Cards”. Each of these cards offers a different perk, with three ranks for each, and players can choose a single card to invest the perk point in and keep.
Each perk card has its own upgrade system, with a 1-star, 2-star, and 3-star rank. Each rank offers a better version of the base perk, similar to most of the perks in Fallout 4. While the process of unlocking perk cards is different, the way to use them is also very different. Instead of having permanent access to all perks that you invest in, you have a limited number of perk card slots. You can choose to assign any perk card which you have invested in to one of these slots, thus gaining the perk’s benefits. Although you can’t use all of your perk cards at the same time, you can switch them around on the fly. This should allow you to re-specialize your character at will, adapting to any situation you come across.