Well, Fallout 4 is finally here. After a … long wait? Short wait? I guess it’s relative: Long compared to the release of Fallout 3, short compared to when it was announced this summer at E3.

I’ve got the game preloaded, and will definitely give it a try on my beast of a PC tomorrow. However, before I dive in and fully commit, I really want to finish The Witcher 3. Man oh man, is TW3 good. I have no doubt Fallout 4 will pale in comparison to TW3’s storytelling, narrative, character development, etc. But Fallout 4 will have the wasteland, and there’s something oddly fun and familiar about being the most powerful person roaming the post-apocalyptic world. Throw in a base-building mechanic and, from what I’m seen so far, a MAJOR graphics overall vs. New Vegas, and Fallout 4 will surely stand on its own as an award-winning open world RPG. CD Projekt Red just did a phenomenal job with TW3, and I’d bet parts of it will be unmatched for many years to come.

What’s your favourite game that takes place in the wasteland? There are quite a few to choose from!

Friday, 12:00 pm – Albert

Of course I would only come up for breath from the wasteland to give some initial thoughts on Fallout 4 on a Friday!

Fallout is a great series Gavin! I would give it a shot. If you’re into retro games, I would start at Fallout 1. FO 1 and 2 are isometric turn based games that have a lot of lore and very different from Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas (third person shooting/looting). I recommend all of them since I am a fanboy of the series. If you’re looking for something more modern (that is turn based) Wasteland 2 just came out last year and that is what inspired Fallout in general. I believe they had the same writers but some IP laws and what not prevented them from continuing the series.

What I will say about Fallout 4 is this — there are so many great aspects of the game but there is something I can’t quite put my finger on for negatives. The “feeling” of the game has been slightly altered. There has been so much catering to consoles that a lot of what made Fallout great was the options and these have been stripped. The PC UI is terrible and only has four options (i.e. four buttons). This affects everything from conversation choices to the inventory system. The switching of weapons is janky. The settlements portion (which I had been super pumped about – and consequently spent 2 points into local leader) has been a tremendous let down and is more of a distraction considering the benefits that i’ve seen (only level 20). The feedback on why a settlement isn’t doing well is lackluster as well.

That being said — this game still holds a lot of the greatness that had come 5 years prior. The lore and the story has been sprinkled in generously as we take on a new space in Boston. The customization is undeniable although a lot of it is unlocked through perks which I have not (as of this time) gained. It sounds like I hate this game but I definitely do not. It is easy for me to pick on things that I wish were different (ex. no weapon degradation?) but it is actually a lot harder for me to write out all the things I love since there are so many aspects.

I am literally a scavenger in the wasteland — picking up fans, vases, paintbrushes, plates, wrenches, telephones, toy cars, ANYTHING really that I will break down into components. I turn these components into objects in my settlement, or use them to upgrade my rifle, my pistol, make mods for those guns, add more pockets to my armor, or reinforce those pieces… everything is possible in Fallout 4. I want to explore every nook and cranny. Finding ways to carry all the things that have limitless potential. This is also the first Fallout where i’ve used companions! I am weak in the wasteland (no longer are you a god — i’m playing on normal) — so having an ally I can command to check this door out, or grab that gun, shoot that Deathclaw while I run away… all those things are amazing and extremely useful. There is a feeling of dread when I run into a building and hear noises. What was that? Deathclaw? Synth? Raiders? Death ROBOTS?! WHAT IS IN THERE?! Maybe i’ll come back when I have my power armor. Maybe i’ll come back when I get my Fat Boy (nuclear rocket launcher). There are many aspects… (bobbleheads are back) that drive me to play Fallout 4 and I think Bethesda has catered to most: the ability to wear your vault suit and put armor on top, custom everything (guns, settlements, player), feeling of surviving (making food, radiation, meeting), human interaction (raiders, helpless people, mutants, robots, etc), factions and story, radio (MY GOD THE RADIO IS GREAT)… all these things together are what make Fallout great. While people will make comparisons to Witcher 3 and Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain – there is only one Fallout. Sure it comes with some bugs, but with those bugs comes survival.

War. War never changes. (and neither does greatness). This game is worth playing at full price. Full stop.

Also, console users — you’re ruining PC games! That means you matt

Monday, 3:40 pm – matt

I’m back, and just in time too! The wait for Fallout 4 has been perfect, not too long of a wait where we start wondering if there will ever be another release (skate.) and not quick enough that the series won’t suffer from burnout (Assassin’s Creed). I’m looking forward to this game immensely, as Fallout 3 was a game I unlocked every Achievement in the Xbox version, and then proceeded to get every trophy in the PlayStation version. I was generously gifted this game from my best friend in life, and I cannot wait to test it out. If only my game glut was growing by the day.

I just picked Hyrule Warriors and can’t say how much fun it is to hack and slash 1,000 enemies as Link.

Monday, 3:10 pm – Gavin

When you say “takes place in the wasteland”, are you referring to a specific series (Fallout) or just a specific setting?  I’ve never actually played a Fallout game – they’re too big for me to get into at this point.  But in that particular setting?  It’s hard to argue that Half-Life 2 isn’t mostly a wasteland with a few outposts, and HL2 is just exceptional.  They really captured the desolate feeling well, with ramshackle buildings interspersed by lots of abandoned areas.

Glad to hear you did well with Extra Life!  I’m not certain I could have kept up with that.  My last all-nighter was about a year and a bit ago, when I stayed up until around 5:00am starting and finishing Bioshock Infinite in one sitting – perhaps not the best approach as I’m sure I missed a lot of good detail.  I’ll have to re-up in the near future, but I’m too busy working on other games.  I’ve wrapped up all of the Nintendo Indie Humble Bundle, and now I’m going to move on to Majora’s Mask 3D once I finish the book I’m reading.  I’ve had a bit of a break from Zelda, so we’ll see if this captures my attention or if I need to shelve it for a bit.

Monday, 9:35 am – Ricky

Extra Life was a great success this weekend! We raised Almost $500 for SickKids in Toronto, and had a blast playing video and board games throughout the day. As always, I appreciate all of the support – looking forward to doing it all again next year. For the kids!