The Fallout series has always been one of my favorite video game franchises. It has always evolved with every release. Being able to explore post-apocalyptic environments brought fun and exciting gameplay moments. That was especially the case with Fallout 3 when it was released back in 2008. All you needed was a PC with modest specs and you were off into the wasteland. The game received lots of praise and was one of the best open-world RPG games ever. I still believe that to be true even until now. Two years later saw the next iteration in the series with Fallout: New Vegas which was created by Obsidian Entertainment. The game maintains the open-world apocalyptic setting but is this latest visit into the desolate wasteland worth it? Read the review to find out!
This time around the game takes place in Las Vegas whereas; the original took place in the nation’s capitol Washington D.C. You happen to be in the wrong place and at the wrong time when you get a bullet to the skull. You are dug up by a helpful robot and then you set off to find the person who emptied the bullet into your head. Somehow the city of Vegas has emerged from the nuclear war unscathed with its lights still shining bright. Sin City’s people have access to electricity and clean water, resources other areas wished they had. There is also heightened tension between the New California Republic (a group of people who value old government values) and the Legion (a dictatorship lead by a man who renamed himself Caesar). These two groups are at each other’s throats for the sake of power and control.
Not much is known about your character other than being a courier. You can either play as a male or female. Your goal is to deliver a package and that’s where things get really crazy and hectic. Twists pop up here and there and help to move the story along. Fallout: New Vegas has several different endings based on how you played the game’s main campaign. I was anxious to find out what was going to happen next. You still lose Karma for killing NCR troops and you again Karma for killing Legion members. This is similar to Fallout 3. Much like its predecessor, Fallout: New Vegas has a compelling main story to go along with the many side missions which you can tackle. Exploration is endless because just when think you have fully discovered a certain location; you end up uncovering a new area to explore. Some of the game’s quests are long while others are long and epic. Companions will join you on your adventure. They can also gain you boosts and experience points. People will react differently to you based on how you treat them. For example, you can help small town people by attacking hostile groups. This has a great deal of an effect on your character. Fallout: New Vegas much like its predecessor will require 100+ hours if you want to do everything that the game has to offer. You can even find and harvest fruit which can be used to create healing powder.
The game features a wide variety of character types; such as, monsters, thugs, mutants and friendly people. The main threat of course comes from the monsters. The game features a pretty good number of weapons that can help you throughout your journey; such as, Flamethrower, .357 Magnum Revolver, Plasma Rifle, 99mm Pistol, Silenced .22 SMG, Riot Shotgun, Pulse Gun, Gatling Laser, etc. So the game has no shortage of ways in which you can dispatch your foes. The game can be either played in first-person or third-person view. You can aim down your sights in first-person view. The V.A.T.S. (Vault-Tec Assisted Targeting System) returns once again. It allows you to target specific body parts. The downside is that a certain amount of points are used every time you utilize it. The game has a perk system called S.P.E.C.I.A.L. which stands for Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility and Luck. Your perks can be leveled up as well and it is crucial knowing which ones to choose. You still manage your character via the Pipboy. Caps are the game’s main currency however, this time there are more ways to earn them by playing a slot machine, Caravan, Blackjack, card games, etc. Sleep, food and water are very critical or else your character will die. Weight also plays an important role so you can’t overload on item which greatly affects your movement and will cause you to get tired.
Fallout: New Vegas uses the same engine that was used in Fallout 3. The graphics haven’t changed very much since its predecessor which isn’t necessarily a bad thing. However, the graphics could have been improved at least a bit. The game doesn’t feel as much as a wasteland as the predecessor but you will still see buildings that have fallen apart and are worn down and they look really good. Character and enemy models look good. The lighting is well done. Fallout: New Vegas is a solid-looking game however; I don’t understand why the game runs on an engine that was used back in 2008.
The audio aspect of Fallout: New Vegas is a high point much like it was with its predecessor. There is even voice work from some big name stars; such as, Matthew Perry, Ron Perlman, Kris Kristofferson, just to name a few. The game’s score was created by Inon Zur and is very well done. There is some really good music by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Bing Crosby, just to name a few artists. The voice work is pretty good for the most part. Weapons themselves have a convincing sound to them. Ambient sounds are well done and effective.
Fallout: New Vegas was a great game and provided a solid gaming experience. I enjoyed the main story along with the many side missions that the game had to offer. The variety of weapons was really good. The V.A.T.S. system was as enjoyable as it was in Fallout 3. The game looks fine but I wished it used a new graphics engine rather than utilizing one from 2008. The voice work and music are both good aspects. Having big name celebrities helps to further immerse players into the game. I really liked Fallout: New Vegas a lot considering I’ve always been a huge fan of the Fallout series and Obsidian Entertainment’s latest release is no different.