Update: We have received a reply from Chronicle Collectibles regarding the helmets.
On September 27th, we sent an email to Chronicle Collectibles asking these questions:
- Is the screenshot of the customer support message legitimate?
- If possible, can you confirm how many helmets were made? We have heard the figure was 20,000.
- If possible, can you confirm how many helmets sold?
- Did you attempt to recall the helmets prior to the recall issued by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission September 19th? Did anyone else (such as GameStop) attempt to issue a recall?
We received the following reply from Heather Ross of Chronicle Collectibles on September 27th (though due to technical difficulties, we only gained access to the email today):
“Thank you for taking the time to contact us regarding the Nuka Cola Power Helmet recall. I apologize for any confusion caused by the email I sent yesterday, as many of the Nuka Cola Helmets were sold, but only 32 were actually shipped to customers prior to the issue being discovered.
Each customer that received the product was contacted immediately, so the customers that received product affected by the recall were notified immediately.
We can confirm that 20,000 units of the Nuka Cola Power Helmet were made and that the CPSC recall notification was sent in conjunction with GameStop on their timeline.
We hope this information is helpful and appreciate you reaching out to clarify the specifics of the recall. If you have any other questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to contact us at your convenience.”
The ongoing situation with the recall of the Fallout 76 Nuka Cola Power Armor Helmet due to mold risk has revealed new information. The special edition may have sold as little as 32 copies- less than 1% of the alleged 20,000 created.
For those unfamiliar with our prior report, a recall was issued for the Nuka Cola Power Armor Helmet (exclusive to a special edition of Fallout 76 via GameStop) from the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) on September 19th. This was due to a mold risk from material inside the helmet.
Since then, a user on Reddit “Ampersanders” posted a screencap of a message they had received from Chronicle Collectibles, the manufacturer of the helmet to the Fallout subreddit.
The message, from Chronicles Collectibles customer support, states the following:
“Good afternoon, [redacted]
Thank you for reaching out and giving us the opportunity to clarify any questions.
The recall only relates to the Nuka Cola version of the helmet, not the collector’s edition helmet included with the game several months ago. The Nuka Cola variant involved in the recall is a red and white paint scheme, and only sold to 32 customers, all of whom were contacted directly by GameStop.
The possible molding occurred after the product left Chronicle Collectible’s possession and was in the possession of GameStop’s freight forwarder for this project. We do not know the cause of the mold, but all the recalled helmets have been accounted for and are being evaluated.
Chronicle Collectibles has never had a product mold where we are in control of the product from development, manufacturing, and transportation. We believe this incident to be an isolated event, and our quality control team at the factory level will remain diligent in its assessment of our products prior to shipment.”
In summery, Chronicle Collectibles claims the mold could not have come from them, and reveal that only 32 copies of the helmet sold.
Combined with the CPSC stating the recall was for 20,000 units, and if the above is true, that means 0.16% of the stock was sold.
Considering hardcore fans may have already purchased a collector’s edition containing both Fallout 76 and another Power Helmet model, it seems that collector’s edition may have undercut sales of the Nuka Cola Power Helmet. Other factors may include a lack of marketing, or the game’s poor reputation at launch.
Returning to the Reddit thread, several users claim the recall was issued as early as July. One even stating they “didn’t even get my hands on it before they told me they were being recalled.” Yet, the CPSC issued their recall on September 19th. This may be due to GameStop or Chronicle Collectibles issuing their own recall prior to the CPSC, however this is purely our own speculation.
We will continue to investigate this story, and report as we learn more.
Fallout 76 is now available for Windows PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One. In case you missed it – you can find our very thorough review for the game here.