The Fallout 76 beta dates have been revealed, here's when you can play

The Fallout 76 beta event finally has official start dates set for late October. We also know more about how the whole thing will actually run, thanks to some new details provided by Bethesda on the official FAQ. So without further ado, let's talk about when you can stake your very first claim on post-apocalyptic Appalachia.

When will the Fallout 76 beta start?

The main Fallout 76 beta event will begin on October 23 for Xbox One players. PC and PS4 players will be able to join in a week later on October 30. There will be some less formal testing periods before then with a smaller pool of players well. Either way, that's a good few weeks of playtime, but you won't be able to spend all of it logged on (and I'm not just talking about having to sleep).

When will the Fallout 76 beta end?

The Fallout 76 beta won't run continuously after its start date. Instead, Bethesda plans to host a series of roughly four-to-eight hour sessions during "targeted time frames." The company plans to announce these time frames well in advance so it can get as many people playing at once as possible. Expect the sessions to continue from your platform's start date to a few days before Fallout 76's full launch on November 14.

How much space will the Fallout 76 beta require?

You'll need roughly 45GB of storage free to download the Fallout 76 beta. Unfortunately, you won't be able to pre-load any of that ahead of time according to the current plan.

Will the Fallout 76 beta have microtransactions?

You'll be able to earn Fallout 76's microtransaction currency, Atoms, while you play the beta. You won't be able to buy them until the game officially comes out. However you get Atoms, you can spend them on ways to cosmetically customize your character.

How much of the game will the Fallout 76 beta have?

According to the official FAQ, Bethesda plans for the Fallout 76 beta event to be the whole game. In other words, you'll be able to experience pretty much everything that will be available in the game at launch - though probably with more glitches and lag, because it's a beta.

Will my Fallout 76 beta progress carry into the full game?

The current idea is... yes! Bethesda says it plans to save all players' progress from the beta and transfer it over into the full version of the game once it goes live. It's relatively uncommon for online games to roll progress over from the beta to the full version, so hopefully this works out.

How do you sign up for the Fallout 76 beta?

The only way to get guaranteed access to the Fallout 76 beta is to pre-order the game from a participating retailer. If you pre-order through your console's digital shop or Bethesda.net, you'll automatically be signed up for the beta. If you pre-order from a physical retailer, you'll need to head to this page on Bethesda.net, log in, and input the code you receive on your paper or email receipt to register.

Still not sure about playing Fallout online? See what you think after Fallout 76's Todd Howard makes the case for going multiplayer.