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FALLOUT 4: Amazing gameplay, amazing world 9/10 would recommend

FALLOUT 4 (PS4) 9/10

FALLOUT 4 is an action adventure game and the first FALLOUT game I've played. The gameplay is a first person shooter in a massive post apocalyptic open world with lots of main quests, side quests to do and places to explore.

Audio 10/10

The soundtrack is excellent when there is no action and the combat soundtrack is one of my favourite ever where it builds tension so well. I could (and have) listen to the main soundtrack all day. There are also radio stations to listen to and I found Diamond City radio to fit the theme (futuristic 1960s) perfectly and went between that and the main soundtrack. The voice acting is fairly good and all conversations have voice acting which is nice. The guns, weapons and enemies all have distinct sounds and the sounds of some enemies are straight up terrifying even if they aren't, like feral ghouls.

Visuals 8/10

The world looks beautiful and especially the overworld is amazing, with broken, elevated motorways in the light blue sky and some areas, like the Eastern satellites look breathtaking. The problems are that the textures are low definition and the people look horrific. For a game that came out in 2015, the characters look so unrealistic it's almost comical. The overall aesthetic of the game, the sixty's theme is so beautiful that you don't notice the textures and only the characters stand out as outdated.

Story 7/10

You are in a vault during the nuclear apocalypse and your son is stolen away and you go on a quest to find your son. The story is fairly good, it was exciting enough to keep me involved and wanting to find out the mystery about my son. I also enjoyed>! the twist at the end of act 2!< and finding out about the different factions though I wish the factions had more faction specific quests like in Skyrim. The ending I did the nuclear fallout ending was mildly emotional but nothing very special. The main problem is the fast paced story where I really wanted to find my son and figure out what was going on conflicted with the way I wanted to play the game which is mainly exploring. The ending was good and looking over my son whilst he is dying in full power armour, disapproving of him, he is upset and disappointed in me and then cold-bloodedly shooting him in the chest with a shotgun whilst I'm staring down at him was a great moment.

Political themes 9/10

There were several political themes and I felt that they were navigated well. The first 2 are the world and the 3rd is part of the RPG elements. The 1st theme is that of anti-consumerism and anti-brands with the secrecy and criticism of Vault-Tec as well as the obsessive focus on Nuka-Cola. I felt that they were well implemented and they sat in the background so if I was pro-consumerism I would still enjoy the game but would have to acknowledge the political theme of the game. The 2nd theme is anti-nuclear weapons which was quite apparent and clear though was rarely touched on outside of the whole appocalypse.

The big theme is the RPG element of synths. These are synthetic people and the different factions have different opinions towards them. The main story ties into these synths a lot and most people hate them whereas some (the Railroad) try to help them. The politics and having to choose between 3 of the 4 factions is based around these synths and I felt that it was quite well implemented where I was conflicted between them all and I felt all of them were flawed. (I chose the minutemen).

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Performance: 8/10

The game has crashed on me once and I've had 2 glitches, one where my head disappeared in a cutscene but my body was still there (it was pretty funny). The second was a gameplay glitch where an enemy was stuck in a wall and couldn't attack me, but I could attack it. There are some framerate drops but I rarely notice it and they mainly happened when there was one of those big helicopter fighter things from the Brotherhood of Steel.

Gameplay 10/10

The most important thing to me is gameplay by a long stretch and there is a lot of it. The gameplay here is fucking amazing. The core gameplay loop is explore, dungeon crawl, loot, use loot to build settlements or upgrade gear, repeat.

Exploration:

The world feels lived in and real. It doesn't just look beautiful to walk around in, it is pretty terrifying to explore, especially at early levels. The enemies you come across belong to different species, like deathclaws or radscorpions and they each have their own traits and fighting styles and part of the thrill of exploring is that you never know if the next hill or river will be have a swarm of bloodbugs or other enemies on the other side. The world has 2 main parts, the wilderness and Boston. Boston is a rundown post-apocalyptic city which has danger around every corner as well as loads of places to explore whereas the wilderness is more scarce but has better enemy diversity with more creatures and less humans to fight.

The dungeon crawling is great. Each dungeon has its own unique design and a different lore behind it that you can find on terminals throughout the dungeon. There is a winding route through the dungeons that has enemies as well as siderooms that hold loot if you want to explore so there are rewards for bonus exploration but it isn't forced.

Combat:

The combat is tight and feels great with natural cover as well as a variety of spaces like corridors, staircases and multi-floored arenas. The movement is not as smooth as the gunplay but still very good and your character is easily manoeuvrable especially for a first person game. The enemy variety is ok and some enemies are terrifying like deathclaws, mireluks and feral ghouls and all have unique attack styles like charging you or turtling before pouncing. The human enemies, synths and super mutants that you find in dungeons are fairly good and some will have certain quirks like throwing molotov cocktails and they use a variety of weapons though the enemy AI is ok and nothing special. There is a good variety of guns to use and loads of customisable attachments you can add on top of drugs which give you special effects like slowing down time.

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You have a VATS system which slows combat down and allows you to hit with like 95% accuracy enemies as well as critical hit, but I rarely used it cause I like fast pace combat. There is also power armour which gives you lots of armour though I felt that it was quite boring to use it as it made the game too easy but if you struggling, you could use it. These are both used for different playstyles to mine and you playstyle changes depending on what perks you invest in, so there is lots of variety depending on how you want to play the game.

The loot and upgrade system:

The loot is not normal loot and is instead regular household items like hot plates, desk fans and cigarette cartons that you break down for parts and use to upgrade your weapons, armour and settlements. This loot system made looting way more fun as instead of just picking up all of the valuable items you can think about what materials you need to build something in your settlement. If you just care about guns and armour upgrading and not settlements, there are only a few key materials you need so if I wasn't settlement building it was easy to pick what I needed like choosing TV Dinner trays for aluminium. You can make many different mods for your weapons and armour using this loot so even though there aren't tons of weapons in the game, there is lots of variety due to the different weapon mods. There are also legendary weapons which drop from legendary enemies and armour that has extra capabilities, like my main assault rifle does an extra 15 explosion damage. These are also customisable.

The perk system has 7 main characteristics and putting points in those unlocks perks that you can also put points in. So if you have 5 points in the Strength characteristic, you can put your next points in any of the first 5 strength perks. Each perk has several levels as well like upgrading lockpicking allows you to pick different strengths of locks each time you put a point in it: BTW you get points each time you level up with experience that you get from killing enemies and completing quests. There is also an infinite levelling system, so you can change your playstyle later on the game which I really appreciate, so I found it much less punishing than Skyrim's perk system where learning new playstyles later on in the game was an unhappy slog.

Settlements are also in the game but I only used 1. You have settlements that you can build using materials to rebuild and help the Commonwealth. You make farms, water pumps, houses, beds, machinery, defences etc. for settlers to live in and use. The settlements then produce things like water, food and money for you. They are optional but I felt that the building system was quite restrictive and I have put all my settlement building time in 1 settlement because there are so many options and I cba to build all of them up. There's a lot of freedom in creation but it's too restrictive for me given how used I am to Minecraft building.

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Outside of the core loop there are other aspects of gameplay

Conversations: The conversations are really well done. You don't have to sit there and read lines upon lines of text to figure out exactly what they mean before the character saying it in a way that goes completely against what you intended. The conversation system was basically X for yes, O for no, Triangle for more information and Square for maybe. This made talking to people easy and quick (as you can just spam x), but, if I wanted more information or it was a role playing part, I had 4 options to choose from and could think about what I wanted to do without having to read several lines or figure out exactly what they meant. The only problem with speech is that when you start talking to people, they say their line first so if you are trying to trade with a shopkeeper, you have to listen to their speech line every single time and it gets on my nerves.

Side characters: The side characters are ok and are either disagreeable or boring but the companions are great. You level up your relationship with your companions and develop a relationship with them and they offer several quests for you as well as having speech inputs throughout quests that change the quests, such as Maccready who is loot driven and will interrupt conversations to go in guns blazing.

Role playing; I know role playing isn't part of the gameplay but I enjoyed roleplaying as an Indonesian Karen who walked around judging people with her fashionable sunglasses.

TL;DR: Gameplay is outstanding with a great loot, combat, customisation and exploration systems. The main problems are the fast paced story not matching the gameplay, poor textures and lag spikes.

Source: reddit.com

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