E3 2015: Fallout 4 Preview
Fallout 4. Fallout goddamn 4. You want to know how to hype a game? Just watch the masterclass Bethesda put up for this year’s E3. One of the most well-loved series in video gaming. One of the most anticipated sequels of this decade. And they didn’t disappoint. Everything that was good about Fallout? Better. Much, much, much better. Let’s run through the ways shall we? Oh there are small and obvious improvements. Improved graphics, HUD, interface. There are the return of series staples like the VATS system, the SPECIAL stat distribution, and a friendly and loveable dog sidekick. There are unexpected improvements to your Pip Boy that allow you to play old school video games, or a companion app that lets you use it like a Pip Boy, but there’s so much more than that to be excited about.
Firstly, character creation and immersion. Your character is now fully voiced. FULLY VOICED. Something we really needed for the next generation of Fallout games. Moreover, characters will actually use your name. Bethesda has recorded dialogue for thousands of common names, and now the characters will actually refer to you as something other than your title of Chosen One, or Vault Dweller, or Lone Wanderer. Your character is more customisable than ever, with a more robust creation system that allows you to really tweak things rather than just rely on a pre-set collection of facial parts.
Secondly, customisation of the world. Customising and creating stuff in Fallout was always a blast. The junk throwing Rock-It Launcher for example. But the new level of customisation in Fallout 4 blows all that clean out of the water. All the useless crap you could pick up and was fit only for selling? Wonderglue, toy cars, random junk parts, all of those are now useful. They can be disassembled for parts, and those parts can then be used to create weapon mods. But what can you do with weapon mods? Well, whatever the hell you feel like. Got a laser pistol? Slap on some extended barrels and a rifle stock, and you now have a laser rifle. Add a longer barrel and a scope? Laser sniper rifle. But it’s not just the weapons either, no, you can also mix and match armour parts. Want to make the most badass looking set of power armour in existence? Go ahead.
I did say customisation of the world right? That’s not hyperbole. It’s not just your gear or you. Not by a long shot. As befitting a post-apocalyptic wasteland, you can now help rebuild it in your own way. No, not by being the biggest hero or villain to roam the wastelands, but by actually rebuilding. You can create your own bases. You can create settlements. There will be areas in the Boston Wasteland where you can create your own communities. Buildings for people to live in. Shops for merchants to run. Crops to grow food, generators to provide electricity, and of course, a ton of firepower and defences for fending off the raider attacks that your thriving settlements will attract. All of this done via a Minecraft-esque creation suite that lets you put down parts wherever you want.
Thirdly, the storyline. It’s intriguing as hell. The game itself starts with a young couple living in Pre-War Boston. A man, a woman, a baby, and their Mr Handy robot butler. The same couple from the Fallout 4 trailer released earlier this month. Your protagonist is that man or woman. As the bombs begin to fall, your small family rush off to Vault 111, with a bomb detonating nearby just as you’re at the entrance. Somehow you survive this. Somehow, you manage to live, for 200 years, seemingly un-ageing, and waking up as the sole survivor of Vault 111, ready to roam the wastelands. Knowing the awful, insane, and incredibly inhumane social experiments that all too many of the Vaults in Fallout were actually built for, what messed up secret is the reason for your survival?
Finally, the coup de grace. When is this amazingly ambitious game coming out? This November. The 10th of November. 2015. That’s right. They’ve been working on this for years, and only now they’ve shown their hand. When they’re just months away from releasing it. If there was ever a better time to get on the hype train, now would be it.
About: Simon Mawson
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