Saturday, 2 January 2016

At A Glance: Fallout 4

One of my biggest concerns with Fallout 4 was that the opening, with the pre-war section, Vault 111 and then emerging into the post-apocalyptic devastation that is The Commonwealth, would be too similar to the opening of Fallout 3 to have any impact. Fortunately, due to a clever use of dramatic irony and some very sensible pacing, Bethesda created an opening that sets up the world, your character and the story in a way that really motivates you to play it. They then throw you, head first, into a world of Super Mutants, Power Armour, Raiders and exploration.

A world of endless freedom...
The game wastes no time in introducing its superb new Power Armour mechanics - Power Armour is accessible early on and is customisable but requires Fusion Cores to power it and they need replenishing. It then moves on swiftly to introduce the rather excellent settlement crafting mechanics which allow you to build a home for people, attract settlers and set up a fully functional town.

Admittedly the new settlement system is the only sizeable new mechanic to the game, otherwise the game largely focuses on taking everything good about Fallout 3 and New Vegas and making it better. Don’t think this is a Call of Duty or Assassin’s Creed style sequel though, from little touches like Power Armour altering your HUD or VATS being more time constrained to larger touches like infinitely more satisfying gunplay, better graphics and noticeably improved conversations this game is a marked improvement over its predecessors.

I have noticed a few issues; sometimes to move a conversation forward you have to back out of it and then go back into it, occasionally companions get stuck in your way and certain enemies may glitch through objects and get stuck. It’s strange though, this is never an annoyance. It’s almost acceptable from a Bethesda RPG, all of their RPGs have similar issues and are great despite them. The glitches are part of the charm and are oddly forgiveable.

Fallout 4 makes a strong first impression on all fronts and it only goes from this strong impression to bigger and better things and, before you know it, your first hour turns into ten hours turns into a hundred hours.

...and endless settlements to save. 

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