Fallout 4 Preview
It seems like only last year that I played Fallout 3, Bethesda’s reboot of the Fallout franchise from the 1990’s. Yet the game was released back in 2008. I remember having borrowed a PS3 from a friend who went on holiday because my PC was rubbish and I just had to play Fallout 3. Strangely enough I also remember fallout 2, a game I received as a birthday gift in 1998 but which I traded for WarGames. Later on I managed to get Fallout 2 regardless and it was brilliant, in an isometric perspective kind-off way. For a while I just couldn’t stop playing turn-based strategy games. If you’re keen to punch the way back machine try out the 1999 game Gorky 17, also known as Odium in the US by Polish developer Metropolis Software.
Fallout 4 official trailer…
I have digressed a great deal without yet having written a word about Fallout 4, the latest Bethesda game. Fallout 4 was formally announced at this years E3. In a surprise twist the game publisher announced it has set a November 10th, 2015 release date. Some fans openly joked they only need to survive 5 more months to play it. Fallout 4 continues with a similar gameplay style as Fallout 3, whereby a player can switch between first and third person view. The experience level up system also remains, which players of Skyrim will also find familiar. However, Fallout 4 has some notable improvements including base-building, separate armor maintenance and in-depth crafting system. The in-game protagonist, who can be a man or a woman depending on the players choice, is a mix of Mad Max and Snake Plissken. They are also accompanied by a dog, Dogmeat, who is incapable of dying. Which solves one gameplay problem. So what is the story about Fallout 4?
E3 gameplay video…
Well, Fallout 4 takes place approximately 200 years after a war over resources that ended in a nuclear holocaust in 2077 – roughly the same time as the events of Fallout 3. The setting is a post-apocalyptic retro-future, covering a region that includes Boston, Massachusetts and other parts of New England known as the Commonwealth. Unlike previous titles, Fallout 4 ’s story begins on the day the bombs dropped: October 23, 2077. The player’s character (voiced by either Brian T. Delaney or Courtenay Taylor) takes shelter in Vault 111 with their family, just to mysteriously awaken 200 years later unaged and as the vault’s sole survivor.
Some serious shit…
As mentioned players can also do base-building. What this means is that pretty much any kind of structure can be converted into a HQ. Players can also arrange for towns to be hooked up to the power grid for electricity. Players can grow food and build defense. This will in time attract merchants. If I didn’t known better I will say Fallout 4 is almost like an MMO. Just without the online aspect. To further help the player traverse the dangerous wastelands of Boston the Pip-Boy also returns. This device, attached to the wrist, can help a player exploring. There are also game cartridges that can be collected to play mini-games in the Pip-Boy. So far, this all sounds too good to be true. Until you think Bethesda has had 5 years to work on the game, ever since Fallout New Vegas. So far the game has been a E3 favorite, with Deus Ex Mankind Divided a close second. But are there any concerns? Some fans complained the story of Fallout 3 wasn’t engaging. I certainly don’t remember it wasn’t. Others complained the post-apocalyptic Washington DC was rather dull. I will partly agree with that. Too many moments were obviously contrived by the game designer and not really in the hands of the player. From what I have written that seems to change. I wonder whether the story won’t become muddled underneath all the base-building, crafting and exploring.
Fallout 4 is set for release on Xbox One, PS4 and PC in November 2015. Gamers will also be able to use their smartphone as the afore-mentioned Pip-Boy.