After having played more than 30 hours, I have seen all the possible endings, yet I still feel that I haven’t even touched the surface of Fallout 4’s expansive open world. Its unique character, crazy enemies and moral choices that will make you question every decision you make, opening hundreds of more possibilities around every corner.
A story that begins with a quest to find your family evolves into a darker tale of moral dilemmas. Just like in previous entries you’re thrown into the middle of several groups that want control of the land, all with their own beliefs that make you consider who will be your friend and who will be your foe.
The Commonwealth of post nuclear Boston
Of course, as in tradition with Bethesda games you are introduced to a wild and wonderful world, which is full of enemies and even a few allies. Even though the well written story is your main objective you can’t help but be captivated by the open terrain given to you. I found it difficult to do even the most simple point A to point B missions without becoming sidetracked along the way, because I saw something that looked interesting in the distance. The Commonwealth is the most expansive game world I’ve seen from a Bethesda project and is the best when it comes to setting the mood of a post apocalyptic wasteland.
Your own character, home and new family
From the start of the game your character is yours to create. You’re given the basic customization choice’s like sex, hair, and skin color, but you’re also given the ability to sculpt the face of your character. After making your character you are able to customize your characters attributes from the S.P.E.C.I.A.L menu, where you add points to your character’s strength, perception, endurance, charisma, intelligence, agility and luck. These attributes are key for how you play since the skill you can unlock later in the game depend on which ones you add points to. With these things combined you feel more connected to your character than in most games, enhancing the story for the better.
However, your character isn’t the only thing that is a hundred percent customizable. Settlements are a brand new addition in Fallout 4 and are areas where you can build your own base to assist survivors in the Commonwealth. I’ve spent probably a good three hours just perfecting my own settlement into a fortress. However, settlements themselves don’t have real purpose when it comes to your story, but I couldn’t help myself when it came to walling of Sanctuary hills and Red Rocket Gas Station, perfecting my version of a safe haven away from the dangers of the Commonwealth. But, I can’t help myself from feeling disappointed from its lack of connection to the story and impact on the surrounding areas.
Even though Fallout is a single player game, you’re never really alone when your playing. Right after you awaken from vault 111 you meet your robot maid Codsworth. He is only one of the 13 different companions. Your companions can vary from a newspaper writer named Piper from diamond city to a super mutant named Strong. These companions follow you around and are open to conversation. However, the thing that makes each character different is the special perk that you can unlock from having a full friendship with the character. This can be a perk that makes you do more damage or gain more xp from doing specific actions. This is an amazing feature since you tend to grow a bond with these companions unlike any other game.
Combat in a new light
Bethesda games has taken a new route in Fallout’s combat system and gave the option of aiming down the sight of your gun. This decision was made to make the more casual person get a faster grip of the game. This vastly improves the feel of the game and allows for the game’s iconic V.A.T.S system feel more smooth.
Power armor, clothes and guns
The Commonwealth is a dangerous place and that’s why you’ll always need a handy weapon at your side. With Fallout 4’s new clothes and weapon stations you can customize your weapons and clothes in order to make the simplest items into something amazing. You have a terrible laser pistol? Craft it into a high powered laser sniper from scrap you find on your adventure. Because of this other peoples trash is your treasure, since every item you find can be torn down for parts used in customization.
Power armor, the paramount of the series, can also be customized at a power armor station. You receive a set of power armor at the beginning of the game, but better more upgraded versions can be found in different locations around the commonwealth. Along with the weapons you customized, you can find legendary enemies that drop rare weapons and armor. These weapons and armor look and work like their un-upgraded counter parts, but have a unique perk. These perks vary from 50 percent more limb damage to incendiary bullets. Because of the customization and special perks, players will be hoarding weapons, armor, clothes and power armor till they feel fit. This makes the game different with every playthrough which vastly improves the overall experience.
Not so game breaking bugs
Bugs are a staple for Bethesda games and Fallout 4 is full of them. Elevators aren’t my best friends when it comes to bugs, since I either see my dog companion get cut in half to just reappear again or I just see a glimpse of a location I was at ten minutes earlier. Another bug that I came across was that my companion would occasionally enter a constant fall, resulting in them not being able to attack. Other than those specific bugs I haven’t been too bothered by them.
In the end Fallout met my expectations for the scale of the game. The beautiful open word and characters make you feel like you truly are in a post apocalyptic Boston. The games settlements are fun, but doesn’t really add much to the experience overall. The weapon customization adds a fresh style into the game and the new Power armor system adds a more survivalist feel. Overall, I’d give Fallout a 5/5.