It is fair to say that Fallout 4 is the most anticipated game in recent years, the excitement that is being experienced in the video games industry for Bethesda’s newest instalment into the post-apocalyptic franchise has only been fuelled by how soon it will be released.
The journey from announcement that it was actually happening to the imminent release of the game is a decidedly short one. The announcement trailer, which gave fans an introduction of sorts to the story they would adventure through made its world premiere at E3 in June. Fallout 4’s release it set to be November of this year. That is an insanely fast turn around and thank God it is because after seeing the footage that has been released as we creep closer and closer to when it hits shelves, I don’t think many gamers could wait very long to get their hands on a copy. So while we wait to finally jump back into that awe-inspiring, strange and messed up world let’s take an inventory of what we know about the game so far.
That incredible gameplay demo at E3 let us in on quite a few things, for starters we finally get to experience that retro-futuristic 1950s society that is referenced and reflected upon in the previous games. It is that kind of white picket fence neighbourhood complete with the kind of robot servant people in the 1920s thought 1950s America would have. The character creation is the most intricate and powerful of any game in the franchise. It may even be the most involved character creation of any Bethesda game. This being due to the fact that there are no sliders, everything can be changed by grabbing and moving. There is nothing about the character that you can’t change, providing you have the skills of character moulding, you can make the character you want in insanely accurate detail. You can also play as a woman, whoever you leave the bathroom as at the end of the sequence is the character you play as going forward. The game even renders a child based on what the couple you create looks like. We also know that we play as the last survivor of Vault 111 and emerge into the wasteland 200 years after the events of the prologue.
The game world looks absolutely incredible, so much detail has been put into it in order to create an immersive experience for the player. It has been said by the game’s creators that it is the biggest open world they have ever made, it is so large that twice as many assets were created for the game than Skyrim. The lead producer of Bethesda, Jeff Gardiner actually told Official Xbox Magazine that he has played the game for almost 400 hours and is still finding new things. That is insane. In an interview with IGN Pete Hines said that Fallout 4 is the most ambitious game Bethesda have ever made and it shows from the amazing detail in the gameplay videos.
What I love about the combat experience is how the monsters of the wasteland react when you attack them. It used to be that enemies in Fallout games would hardly react when you shot them. Their health would go down and they would stop for a second when you landed a critical hit but apart from that they would pretty much just keep running at you and attacking until you killed them. However in the gameplay demo you can see the Mole Rats react to every bullet and move in a very organic way. This kind of gameplay is going to make combat feel amazingly real. The V.A.T.S system has been greatly improved since the last iteration, it appears to be more detailed and rather than stopping time completely it just significantly slows it down. You can see your enemy moving in slow motion as you pick your shot, it is a sight to behold. Enemies now appear in a much more dramatic way, for example there is footage of Deathclaw’s appearing out of the ground to surprise the player, or more to the point, scare them shitless. As if they weren’t terrifyingly dangerous enough they can now jump you without warning. What I love about the footage we have seen so far is that the locations look gorgeous. Even though it is a post-apocalyptic environment there is a lot of vegetation and colours. Furthermore the news has come out recently that there will be occasional updates, not only to fix bugs but to actually add features to the game. There will also be downloadable content for Fallout 4 after release. Before any of it is released players can purchase a season pass so as to get every bit of DLC.
To ensure a truly immersive experience Bethesda have gone to extreme lengths with their recording of dialogue. It was recently revealed that they have recorded more than 111, 000 lines of dialogue to ensure that characters do not constantly repeat themselves, this is something that often takes the player out of the RPG experience. I also love what they have done with the Pip-Boy it looks amazing, they detail they have gone into in creating it is impressive. Rather than seeing an arm come up and the entire screen being taken over by the menu it is actually like the player is looking at the Pip-Boy. Bethesda have even gone as far as to make game cartridges that can be found and played on the Pip-Boy. If all this wasn’t cool enough Bethesda have said that the game will be completely moddable, like with Skyrim I can imagine people creating some pretty insane mods. Players will know doubt take advantage of the size of the map when it comes to creating custom gaming experiences. Fallout 4 is looking fantastic at this point, there are too many awesome details to talk about all of them but check out some of the videos I have embedded in this post and prepare to enter the wasteland.