While the real world currently deals with a global pandemic of COVID-19 outbreaks, the urgent need to practice social distance has caused many to retreat into the world of video games. Friday’s release of both Doom Eternal and Animal Crossing: New Horizons has certainly helped those stuck inside hoping to escape for a little bit.
If you’re looking for a game that might remind you a bit too much of the real world, Fallout 76 certainly can do that. The game’s post-apocalyptic setting is a bleak West Virginia after the bombs fell and what’s left of humanity is left to pick up the pieces. That includes a lot of junk and, in this case, a sudden run on toilet paper.
As Kotaku pointed out, the real-life hoarding of toilet paper, which has spawned a million memes as people try to understand why some are so afraid they’ll run out of No. 2 supplies, has impacted the game’s own sales of toilet paper.
meanwhile, in fallout 76 pic.twitter.com/j1ZLHyYn40
— Patricia Hernandez (@xpatriciah) March 18, 2020
— GRAZ(𝖈𝖔𝖗𝖊) (@GrazCore) March 15, 2020
— Stix Selvain🌹 (@Stix_Selvain) March 17, 2020
The game’s users have their own digital economy that’s based on buying and selling goods, and though the item is largely worthless, it’s still getting high markups that reflect some of the more heinous actions taken by hoarders looking to make a quick buck in the real world. And since the economy reflects those sale prices, you can actually make some quick caps selling it.
— christopher (@crizzonet) March 18, 2020
Given the tongue-in-cheek nature of the game’s apocalyptic canon this all certainly checks out, and it’s funny to see the game’s actual economy change in a way that mimics the currently inexplicable lack of toilet paper in real stores across a real panic-stricken America. Hopefully no one actually runs out of supplies in the real world, and those that really need to make paper in Fallout 76 find some other items to make due with until it becomes a bit less funny to price gouge for a relatively inessential supply.