Bethesda has been ramping up information about Fallout 76 over the past week or two as the B.E.T.A. is getting ready to kick off. In a pair of Twitter posts on the game's account, fans are reminded about a pair of old "friends" that will also be present in FO76: The Enclave and The Brotherhood of Steel. Also introduced is a group of Appalachian doomsday "preppers", they are called the Free States.
The Enclave has been around since Fallout 2 and are the remains of the government as it was before the War. Its goal is to reestablish order and has spread its influence to specific locations throughout the country.
Just before the bombs fell, US leadership relocated to a remote Oil Rig off the coast of San Francisco. The Enclave’s mission – to re-establish governmental control of America from key locations, like a secret bunker hidden somewhere deep in Appalachia...
The Brotherhood of Steel has been somewhat more controversial. According to Eurogamer, a lot of fans have been upset at the Brotherhood's inclusion in FO76 as it does not fit the established timeline.
The discussion stemmed from an in-game note from Fallout 76 which mentions the Brotherhood of Steel's extended involvement in Appalachia - the Fallout name for West Virginia. For many fans, this was problematic, as according to established Fallout lore the Brotherhood of Steel should not have emerged from their Californian bunker until around the year 2150. Fallout 76, however, is set on the other side of the country - in 2102. As such, the question on everyone's mind was: how on Earth did the Brotherhood get to Appalachia so quickly after an apocalyptic nuclear war?
However, Bethesda has explained how the Brotherhood can have a presence in Appalachia:
November 2077, a month after the Great War, army Captain Roger Maxson arrived with survivors at the Californian bunker of Lost Hills. There he formed the Brotherhood of Steel, who used a functioning satellite to extend their reach across America...all the way to Appalachia.
The Free States is a group of former doomsday survivalists:
On October 23, 2077, the world was plunged into nuclear war. But what if you expected the worst? And planned for it? In Appalachia, a group of doomsday preppers did exactly that. Organized as the Free States, they holed up in their bunkers. And survived. At least, for a while…
The Responders are the "brave fire fighters, police officers and medical professionals who selflessly served their communities. After the bombs fell, the formed a group. Their mission -- help each other...no matter the cost.