Fallout 76 free weekend and double XP weekend both start on Thursday

(Image credit: Bethesda)

Fallout 76 is hosting a free weekend, giving you the perfect chance to try out the newly NPC-inhabited wasteland.

The free weekend is set to run from Thursday, May 14 at 9am PDT / noon EDT / 5pm BST through the same time on Monday, May 18 across PC, PS4, and Xbox One. It will offer complete access to everything included with the base game as well as the big Wastelanders expansion that rolled out last month. Wastelanders finally added NPC human survivors to the game, injecting new life into post-apocalyptic Appalachia.

That weekend will also offer double XP gain in the game, which goes both for free players and current owners. It should be a good time to catch up with Fallout 76 whether you've been watching it from the outside since it first arrived in 2018 or if you're a lapsed player who's been thinking about coming back to try Wastelanders.

It's a bit late in coming, but Wastelanders may represent a turning point for Fallout 76. A recent developer AMA revealed that the developers are talking about potentially adding pets to the game in a future update, as well as a more active role for the Brotherhood of Steel and a new friendly mole miner character.

Even while we were pining for NPCs and other series staples, loyal Fallout 76 players like Doc CJ Martin were devoting their in-game lives to helping out the rough-and-tumble inhabitants of Appalachia - and the Fallout 76 player base returned the favor after a tragic house fire. 

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Connor Sheridan

I got a BA in journalism from Central Michigan University - though the best education I received there was from CM Life, its student-run newspaper. Long before that, I started pursuing my degree in video games by bugging my older brother to let me play Zelda on the Super Nintendo. I've previously been a news intern for GameSpot, a news writer for CVG, and now I'm a staff writer here at GamesRadar.