Get the game. End of review.
Ok, seriously, the game is good. I’ve been feeling rather plucky in the game lately because I see a quest and I just go do it. I’ve upped the difficulty a little since I started, since this was my first Fallout game. My build went really well and I had some very nice armor drops. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, I will explain in a bit. If I still need to sell you on the game, I will compare/contrast to a few other games. Fallout 4 is made by Bethesda, so the first comparison is to Elder Scrolls. I loved Elder Scrolls. Loved it. I even bought the MMORPG and convinced some good friends to buy it. The MMO was not as good as Oblivion or Skyrim, so we really stopped playing. I personally stopped playing because I was a level 25 warrior who got killed by a level 11 wizard in some quest and I was so pissed off. I actually logged back into the game just recently and found my still lifeless body on the ground in front of the wizard. I love the commitment, but I’m angry about the results. Fallout 4 continues the awesomeness of Skyrim (which was way better than the MMO and in my top ten games of all time) except you have guns. I spent an hour in the character creation screen getting my character’s (Benjamin’s) lips just right. For reals. Then I unleashed him upon the world. He was super strong, very charismatic, quite lucky, and moderately intelligent. He was just OK at looking around and fighting and stuff. I knew I wanted him to carry all the things (I heard there is basically a hoarding mentality with FO4 before I started playing it…that part is true). I didn’t go for quite a melee build with the character creation, but I wound up with one anyway. Once I started leveling up, I added in sneakiness, since stealth was one of my favorite builds in Skyrim. I loved shooting a single arrow and having a dragon crash into the ground at my feet, dead. Sadly, FO4 does not have any dragons, but Bethesda did re-use a few things I noticed, like the sound it makes when you pick up a bottle of liquid (or potion in Skyrim), and the way the sun looks with clouds passing between you. That’s pretty cool. There are swords, but I tend to stick with my silenced sniper rifle. You can build better swords (like adding chainsaw blades or electrifying them), so there is a wonderful crafting element, like in WOW and other games. I saw a minigun with big swords on the front and barbed wire wrapped around it. That was pretty cool.
So, I’ve wandered the ‘Commonwealth’, as the world in FO4 is named, and I encountered Legendary (very strong) enemies who dropped stealth armor (remember the chameleon effect in Oblivion? Same thing). So, now I have a nearly invisible character who can snipe enemies from afar or sneak right up next to them and punch them to death. If none of that sounds good, I have another comparison. Do you like the Sims? FO4 is basically the Sims in first-person (or third-person) with guns. You encounter followers who you can impress or disappoint. You can build your own home base (or multiple home bases) and decorate it just the way you want. I have spent at least a dozen hours building up my ‘settlements’ and trying to romance my followers. So, you could also compare this game to Mass Effect (Bioware game), because you can do some similar stuff there with the romancing, plus the conversations are like Mass Effect, where you pick ‘Sarcastic’ and don’t know what your character will end up saying. FO4 doesn’t have a ton of selection when building, so it’s not as cool as the Sims, but if you go to the library to get a new book (I don’t know why this ‘quest’ is so prevalent in Sims games, but it is also in FO4), you get to bring a gun and shoot enemies before you get the book back to your ‘house’. Also, the game isn’t really turn based, so Mass Effect still holds that distinction (and KOTOR, another Bioware). It has been rumored that modifications to the game (mods) built by normal people will be fully integrated with both the PC and console versions. It might be the first time this has happened with console games. Mainly because as soon as you open up that stuff, some guy decides he’s going to use it to hack your console and control it or something. Bro, nobody cares that you stole my Yahoo account.
If you still aren’t convinced because you play sports games or racing games, then I have failed you. You should still play Fallout 4, but I have a big spoiler warning: the game is sad. Like, I’m not ruining anything for you, because the story is nuclear holocaust, but the problem is that people will be people even after a nuclear holocaust. You encounter horrible stories of love and loss, of revenge and penitence. Bethesda is very good at making you feel sad for people. For example, I stumbled upon a Raider hideout. Raiders are bad guys, because they hurt other people and steal their stuff. Well, it turns out that this Raider group was only trying to get back the leader’s sister, who had been kidnapped by another Raider group. Of course, I didn’t know about this noble cause until after I had wiped them all out and started reading some sad e-mails on a leftover computer terminal (they all look and sound like Apple IIe desktops, which makes me laugh). Turns out that the leader had been trying to get the little sister back, and the kidnappers were forcing them to do bad things to try and ‘win’ her back. That’s pretty sad. I also saw some children’s toys left behind in an abandoned house, and chalk had been used to write a sad note, ‘Goodbye’. Or the sad story of a skeleton I found with a note explaining how she was running away from home because her parents weren’t going to be happy that she was pregnant and the boyfriend was going to dump her, so she died alone in a shack in the middle of the woods. See? Sad. Oh god, there’s also the Railway Rifle location. That might be the saddest. There isn’t a happy ending to any of the stories I’ve come across in Fallout 4, but I haven’t finished it yet. Maybe there is a light at the end of the tunnel or something. Anyways…you should play it.