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Subject: Fallout 4 First Impressions... 2 Years later? rss

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2pproject
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I must have been among the top 1% of people who hadn’t yet played Fallout 4. I tried it, but never finished it, and if you argue that trying it out is never truly playing it, then I guess I know where I stand! I can’t even begin to think about the amount of DLC that has been released since the game dropped. Taking all this into account, I still took the plunge, and decided to play the base vanilla game so that I could provide you loyal readers with my impressions on the game…2 years later, literally! By now, there are 1000’s of videos that review the full game, look at different mods to increase your playability, different build guides, easter egg secrets, etc etc etc. so I won’t attempt to bore you with that same stuff.

It’s funny, you know, all the reviews or first impressions I have ever done, whether written or video, have been on games that have been around for a couple of years at least. I think I might make a habit of this! We’re in 2017 and what… Fallout 4 released in 2015? I’m just now getting a chance to play the game. Some would say that playing and reviewing a game 2 years later is silly. Whatever! For your information, I’ve clocked about 20 hours into the game already. I figured I’d get a few words down before I forget my first experiences with the game. I likely won’t have a written review of this game when I complete due to the absurd amount of content in the game. The last time I played a game for over 100 hours was Final Fantasy VII and that was a long time ago.

To be honest, Fallout 4 is actually the first Fallout game that I’ve played for more than 5-6 hours. Fallout 3 was fun and New Vegas was a great game but I just couldn’t push through them. Whether my life got in the way or I just couldn’t stay engaged with the content is still up for debate. Fallout 3 was my first experience with a game outside of the Elder Scrolls universe and I think I may have stuck to wielding a blade as opposed to shooting a gun if it weren’t for my incessant need to finish a Fallout game.

Fueled by my desire to finish a Fallout game, I recently re-connected with a video game franchise I absolutely love, Resident Evil, to see if that would spark my interest in playing Fallout 4. You see, Funko released several POP Resident Evil figures that I purchased and placed on my shelf! The nostalgia was real, let me tell you, but not as nostalgic as playing the games. Honestly, I had thought about playing through and streaming the entire Resident Evil series but quickly shot that idea down as I have yet to play Resident Evil 7. I know, I know… expect a review for that in a year or two! Anyway, longing for some post-apocalyptic gameplay and with Steam undergoing their annual summer sale I bought Fallout 4.

Though I haven’t invested a lot of time into the game, nor have I experienced much in the way of things to do and see. I have had an opportunity to experience the mechanics and settlement system which to me has taken up quite a bit of time especially after tackling ‘The Minutemen’ questline and fighting the Mirelurk queen. That questline is just one among the hundreds that are open to the player. I would like to say that I’m exaggerating but I’m pretty sure I’m not. Ok, maybe 100 is a bit of a stretch but there are still a ton of quests!

The opening scene and intro of the game itself is refreshing as I’ve always struggled with finding a way to connect with the characters I’ve played as part of the Fallout universe. This is probably the main driver for my trouble with the other games. If I can’t associate with the struggle my character feels then I can’t immerse myself in the games. Mild spoilers to follow if you are in the 1% of people who haven’t played the game like me!

Without realizing it, Fallout 4 led me on a quest in search of my son before I knew what was happening. The pacing was slow enough in the beginning to establish context and to develop an emotional connection with my in-game family. Then just when I thought this could be the slowest opening to a Fallout game the in-game TV started blaring about Nuclear detonations. I was suddenly engulfed by panic and felt that feeling you get at the pit of your stomach, you know the one, as I looked to my wife and son. The game carries you through a sequence of events fairly quickly which truly defines your mission for the game. You are then thrust into the world of Fallout 4 utterly hopeless and left to fend for yourself.

Doesn’t take a genius to notice that the game had me hooked from the opening scene. I did have an issue with many of the quests as quite many them had me scratching my head as to reasons why the NPC’s couldn’t do the work themselves. I guess it gives me a sense of purpose for existing in the world. I did find some of the quests really engaging except when I waltzed into a super mutant camp where I couldn’t kill anything. How does the difficulty in a game spike so much that when a town not 200m’s away from where I died has enemies that I can kill in one hit…?

To be honest, there’s not much I’ve encountered that has really deterred me from playing the game other than the aforementioned difficulty spike and some nuances with the building settlements feature in the game. I feel somewhat disassociated from this feature as it seems to also serve no purpose other than a place to kick back and relax from the storyline and a place to make caps, buy gear, and be creative. Like I said, I haven’t played the game long enough to know if there is some sort of reward at the end, other than an achievement. Maybe after I’ve completed the main questline and the DLC I’ll focus on building my settlement to see what’s what.

There was one other issue I forgot to mention. I feel like the game was made strictly for those with a controller. So much so that the next time I play the game I’m going to be using my Xbox One controller to be able to play without having to worry about buttons I’m going to mistakenly press. I just can’t seem to get the best feel for the keyboard and mouse combination. I play on PC and I find that using the mouse and keyboard offers a bit more control. I’m not going to get into the specifics, I’m just saying that I think that the keyboard and mouse bindings should have been considered when the port was made. Fallout 3 and New Vegas do not suffer from this problem. One possible reason could be that those games were primarily made for PC then ported to console. Maybe? I dunno. This may be insignificant for some,Explosion by wife and son but for me, is awfully frustrating especially when I accidentally hit the ‘ALT’ key and cook a grenade that eventually explodes in my hand detaching my arm from the rest of my body. I don’t find it very functional either to have to move my thumb underneath my palm to hit a button… it just feels weird. To answer your question, since then, yes, I have changed the binding so no harm no foul… I’m just saying.

Despite the minimal issues, I’ve encountered I feel that Fallout 4 is an amazing game with so much content that it may feel overwhelming at times but not to the point where the game feels like I’m doing chores. I’m hoping that this may actually be the first Fallout game that I finish. Maybe even get some achievements along the way. We’ll see. There’s much more I could talk about like the wonderful soundtrack that accompanies the game, the atmosphere, the voice actors, the gear, the locations, etc etc but I just don’t have time to go through all that. I mean, really, I could write a whole article on each topic! But first! I’m going to load up some Fallout 4 after I grab a Nuka Cola and some Iguana on a Stick — er I mean a pop and Hot dog! Here’s to Fallout 4! Cheers. 2P OUT!

*Originally Posted September 2, 2017, on http://www.2pproject.ca

Update Jan 1, 2018: I have since beat the game but haven't written a piece on my final impressions or review of the game as there is just too much to piece together without having written any notes on the game. If I ever play it again I will update this review to include other information!
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Pat
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Awesome review, well written.

...I'm about 90% sure I know the exact Super Mutant camp you're talking about as well. That one is in a position where you can run into it fairly early, and not be at all prepared to deal with it.
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IceFire1424 wrote:
Awesome review, well written.

...I'm about 90% sure I know the exact Super Mutant camp you're talking about as well. That one is in a position where you can run into it fairly early, and not be at all prepared to deal with it.


Haha! Yeah! To be honest, I didn't even realize enemies could scale up that quickly and marched right in there thinking I was beast at my lowbie level. At first I thought the game was too easy. I was quickly humbled! Thanks for the comment.

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Priyanshu Kumar
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Very good review. I played the vanilla version myself for around 25 hours myself but coudn't finish it really. There's so much to do and when you finally *Mild Spoilers* Meet your son and know the truth about him and synths *end* it really kinda bored me out. Also i was playing witcher 3 at that time and i absolutely loved that game. But thanks to your review i might buy all the DLC and go back in it once more in the future.
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John O'Haver
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I loved Fallout 3. I played the main story and all the DLC. New Vegas not so much. I got to a fork and the plot line, succumbed to indecision and quit playing. I have a stupid number of hours in F4 and I never finished the main plot either. Can't decide on who to support. While pondering that decision, I've played the DLC in order and I'm part of the way through the last one, the Nuka World one. In the meantime, I've done thousands of quests and built a couple dozen settlements. In the course of all this dithering around, my character, Bess Ratatat (an anagram for my besties real name) has reached level 118. She is the alpha predator in the Commonwealth. The last time she died it was because she fired her explosive mini-gun at a target much too close. Don't know when I'll fire it up again.
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priyanshu1998 wrote:
Very good review. I played the vanilla version myself for around 25 hours myself but coudn't finish it really. There's so much to do and when you finally *Mild Spoilers* Meet your son and know the truth about him and synths *end* it really kinda bored me out. Also i was playing witcher 3 at that time and i absolutely loved that game. But thanks to your review i might buy all the DLC and go back in it once more in the future.


Apologies for the delay! Thanks for the comment! I've since taken a break from playing Fallout 4 but recently my brother played again and he mentioned to me that playing while role-playing your character really adds spice to the gameplay and atmosphere.

I haven't purchased any of the DLC yet but given that I'm close to being ready to play again with my brother's new outlook I may drop the $$$ to jump right in with all the DLC! I'll be sure to update or submit a review of all the DLC when I get a chance.
 
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scribidinus wrote:
I loved Fallout 3. I played the main story and all the DLC. New Vegas not so much. I got to a fork and the plot line, succumbed to indecision and quit playing. I have a stupid number of hours in F4 and I never finished the main plot either. Can't decide on who to support. While pondering that decision, I've played the DLC in order and I'm part of the way through the last one, the Nuka World one. In the meantime, I've done thousands of quests and built a couple dozen settlements. In the course of all this dithering around, my character, Bess Ratatat (an anagram for my besties real name) has reached level 118. She is the alpha predator in the Commonwealth. The last time she died it was because she fired her explosive mini-gun at a target much too close. Don't know when I'll fire it up again.


I feel that indecision is the culprit of many efforts to complete a game by Bethesda. I'm currently romping my way through Skyrim now and have also encountered some form of indecision and feel like it would be a chore for me to go down one path or the other. I shall persevere because one of my 2018 goals is to beat the major 'recent' bethesda games, haha!

p.s. Bess Ratata, is an amazing name. Mine was Ark Console (I have no idea how I came up with that name hahahah).

Thanks for the comment!

 
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