Fallout: New Vegas is an action role-playing game that takes place on the West part of the American continent, just like Fallout and Fallout II. The game uses 3-rd person perspective as well as first person view, making the main character easier to control in combat situations.
The game was brought together using the graphical engine of Fallout III, a very controversial choice that made New Vegas inherit some of the flaws of its predecessor. If you can ignore some bugs and graphical issues, you’re in for a great adventure!
The New California Republic is a huge post-apocalyptic world where stories of violence and decadence blend with its numerous inhabitants: humans, mutated monsters, bandits, ghouls and various other factions. The quests seem endless and the map is overcrowded with new and exciting places filled with mutants or bandits.
The story will take you to the former Las Vegas, now known as New Vegas. The year is 2281, and three years have passed since the events in Fallout III. The New California Republic (or just the NCR as most call it) tries to maintain the law and the old values using a combination of human armed forces and pre-apocalyptic weapons.
On the other end of the sword there is Caesar’s Legion. With a huge army of slaves from 86 conquered tribes on their side and constant attacks on Hoover Dam (one of the most important electricity sources in the region), they are a huge threat to the stability of the region.
You will play as a deceivingly regular courier who will have to choose which side to favor. You have been chosen to take a package (a platinum chip) to the city of Prim. Ambushed on the way, your package has been stolen and you’re lying on the ground with an 18-karat gold pistol staring you in the face.
Shot and almost dead, your luck doesn’t run out, as in the near town you find a doctor (Doc Mitchell) whose hands are almost magical. Brought back from the dead, you now have to find the man who almost killed you and recover the chip.
If you played RPG games before, just forget them. This is different from anything you’ve ever tried so far. The character creation part is a very nice surprise that should be integrated in all other role playing games. The Vit-o-matic Vigor Tester, the psychological tests that you’ll get from the doctor are a like a breath of fresh air to the genre also making every game unique.
After the good doctor heals you, he also gives you a Pip-Boy. Those who’ve played Fallout III, will need no introduction to this great piece of equipment. If you’re not familiar, this is kinda the command center of your character. From here you’ll be able to switch weapons, use various items, read and choose active quests, travel around the map and even change the radio station.
A hardcore mode is available for those of you who are up for a challenge. Completing this mode will get you a special reward, but be warned that it will be hard to complete even for experienced Fallout III gamers.
The control of the character is easy and intuitive, all the weapons, ammo and other items being just in the grasp of a button.
The battles can be pretty cool if you have just one or two opponents, but if their number increases, then you can say you have a problem. It will be quite difficult to shoot a number of 5-6 fast moving targets especially if you have no companions and on top of it all, the V.A.T.S. is not charged. So the number of deaths will increase proportionally with your frustration…
One of the greatest things about the game is the set of quests available. Tons of them are just lying around, waiting for you to complete them, and that is one thing that really matters in a role-playing game. Simple or complex, be sure that behind each of them there is a great story that will tie you further to this post-apocalyptic world.
The biggest surprise when you’re going to travel outside Doc Mitchell’s house is going to be the scenery, similar to Fallout III. Of course several improvements have been added to the graphical engine, along with a nice change in the landscape, but some nagging old bugs are still there, for instance companions and monsters go around the corner instead of following you directly and you will still get stuck in between rocks.
The option to change between first person and 3-rd person view is a nice surprise, but you’ll probably stick to the first choice, because even though the second one offers a way better view of the surrounding area, thus helpful in eliminating a surprise attack, it makes the character look goofy when it moves, no matter what you’ll choose (lad or gal), and what you’ll equip them with.
Slaying your opponents will most of the times end with a brutal close-up of the scene, and you can see limbs breaking in pieces and even bloody and detailed decapitations!
There are several radio stations that keep you company, but it seems that with every nice thing there is also a disadvantage. The music will be very often seasoned with news about what’s going on in the desert and the songs will keep repeating until you’ll just give up.
Overall, voices and sounds are pretty good (also a nice improvement from Fallout III) broadening the experience and giving a sense of belonging to this cold, lonely place that is the Mojave Desert.
If you’ve played Fallout III then don’t get your hopes too high. Yes, the graphics are refurbished, and there are some other small changes (now you can craft bullets and items, new monsters, the considerably more scenic Mojave Desert, more quests and places to visit), but if you expect a totally new and changed game, you’re in for a big disappointment.
If you’re just a beginner in the Fallout franchise, then we have some good news. With over a hundred hours of game-play, and high replay value, Fallout New Vegas it’s sure to make you guys happy.