Fallout: New Vegas
Gamescom 2010: Fallout: New Vegas Preview - Viva New Vegas!
Written Thursday, August 26, 2010 By Lee Abrahams
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Fallout 3 is possibly the finest example of a western RPG as you are likely to find in recent years. With a massive open-ended world, intriguing characters and a wonderful mix of superb storytelling and sly humour, it pretty much has it all. A sequel was inevitable, though considering the gap between the last two games it's safe to say that no one expected it quite so soon.

Luckily we were allowed an hour of hands-on time at this year’s Gamescom in which to immerse ourselves in the game, hopefully to find out what makes it tick while at the same time, seeing if this title could step out of the shadow of its older brother. Considering the game world on offer, the real problem here was simply that an hour was nowhere near enough.

A lot of the voice cast from the last game make a welcome return, and hearing the gravelly tone of Ron Perlman during the intro brought fond memories of the last game flashing back. Gone is the Capital Wasteland though to be replaced with the Mojave Desert and sunny New Vegas, a town that still welcomes anyone with money as long as you steer clear of the seedier elements and don’t tangle with the local law droids. However, this time around you do not start cooped up in a Vault trying to figure out the world above as you go. Instead you begin as a courier who seemingly gets wound up in a spot of trouble and has to go looking for some payback. It does seem a trifle clichéd, but the opening sets things up perfectly and prepares you for the kind of open world experience that this series thrives on.

While the game looks a lot smoother than its predecessor, those looking for a total overhaul are going to be in for a bit of shock. The game still has vast swathes of open areas made of little more than rocks and shrubs, but thankfully, the real difference comes from the gaudy lights of Vegas itself which looks superb; not to mention a wide variety of friends and foes that you can tussle with. The character models seem like a vast improvement this time around, although you can still have some issues with questionable AI path finding.

This being Fallout, you can pretty much make anyone into a foe depending on how you approach the game. But the real change is the fact that every township now comes with a level of acceptance towards you depending on how you act. If you help out a town then your reputation in that area will increase, which in turn can lead to new dialogue, missions and the like. Obviously not every town thrives on good deeds, so some places may well be more welcoming if you stray into evil behaviour. Obviously it is impossible to keep everyone happy, but that has always been at the heart of Fallout: how every moral choice has a consequence. Only now those repercussions could be far more damaging in the long term.

Other little tweaks come in the form of the new ability to create beneficial items, which is something of an extension to the workbench areas from the last game. As well as being able to make new weapons and helpful equipment, you can now mix up health draughts and statistic boosting elixirs. Obviously you will be required to scour the wasteland for suitable ingredients, but the results are well worth it. On another note, the skill books seem to have been subtly changed. Now they give you much more of a boost but will actually wear off after a certain amount of time. Whether of not you can still get permanent boosts remains to be seen, but this way may well stop the creation of practically invincible player characters.

It was impossible to see everything in such a short amount of time, but the major addition we did see is a pretty intriguing one. Welcome to Hardcore mode, where your equipment deteriorates faster, Stimpacks and Rad-X only heal over time rather than instantly and ammo now weighs you down. Not to mention the fact you will need to eat, drink and sleep regularly or risk exhaustion. These may seem like small changes but trust me when I say they make a big difference. Now your weapons will break down during combat with alarming regularity, not to mention the fact that if you take too much damage, then you can’t rely on just a Stimpack to get you back on your feet, so you may have to flee or end up face down in the desert. It is also surprising how much you can take for granted the weightlessness of ammo – once it starts to become a burden you really have to pick and choose your equipment with care as you cannot possibly carry it all. Gone are the days of being a one man tank. This mode will truly separate the men from the boys and is the perfect addition to those that blitzed through Fallout 3 and wanted a bit more of a challenge.

Being a trophies site it was obvious that we would take a sneaky peek at what was on offer and the list is pretty much what you would expect. There were plenty of rewards on offer for story based missions, as well as tasks off the beaten path. There were also a lot of challenges that required you to dish out 10,000 points of damage with a variety of weapons and even your fists. The real reward though was a juicy trophy for polishing off the game on Hardcore mode – without once changing the difficulty during your entire playthrough – so good luck with that. Thankfully with so much going on the game has added a nice tracking system that pops up on screen when you are closing in on certain challenges and trophies.

Any minor quibbles aside, the real lure of Fallout is just how easily it draws you in. The second you step out into the desert you have a wealth of choices at your fingertips and every time you turn around there is a question of “What do I do next?” That is the brilliance of this game and one that will keep you coming back for more. The New Vegas desert offers a whole lot more to see and do, plus the varied storyline and interesting characters all combine to make this a vastly different experience to Fallout 3. Be prepared to step into New Vegas and lose yourself for months.

Fallout: New Vegas is scheduled for an October 19th and October 22nd release in North America and Europe respectively.


User Comments
Forum Posts: 2020
Comment #1 by YurtleTehTurtle
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 02:44:09 PM
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Hmm, this is THE game of the next six months for me. Not sure about Hardcore mode though, the first ten hours of Fallout 3 when you're at your weakest we're my least favorite. Having to constantly repair, eat, sleep and heal may just suck a lot of the fun out of the game.

Does anyone know if the Bobbleheads are back?

Forum Posts: 3339
Comment #2 by micco12
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 02:56:26 PM
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This will be the best game ever made. (Putting Fallout 3 to the second place)

Forum Posts: 25
Comment #3 by LeoDecurses
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 03:02:56 PM
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i disagree. I am actually looking forward to Hardcore mode. It is just that in Fallout3, you carried all the stimpacks, bandages, and ammo, even for guns you did not have. it made it convient, but for the most part, it made the game easy. too easy compared to the beginning. i think Hardcore mode will separate New Vegas from other RPGs and make it a true role-playing game.

p.s. The plot synopsis sounded like Infamous.

Forum Posts: 395
Comment #4 by Cromag2
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 03:09:34 PM
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Deathclaws + Hardcore = me failing...

Forum Posts: 49
Comment #5 by crystal27
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 03:20:11 PM
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along with everyone else......

anyway, i have mixed feelings about hard core. Trophy-wise, i gotta, but if it wasn't a trophy i wouldn't bother. Oh well, three cheers for death by dehydration!!!

Forum Posts: 0
Comment #6 by HappyNoodleBoi
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 03:35:47 PM
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Too many good games = not coming out of the house until Avengers comes out...

Forum Posts: 158
Comment #7 by SGTquig
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 03:43:40 PM
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Can't wait for this! Got the Collector's Edition already paid for! This will be my next platinum unless I finish Dragon Age: Origins before then.

Forum Posts: 1067
Comment #8 by Sly-Creed
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 04:51:57 PM
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This game will be awesome. At first, I thought Fallout 3 would be a bad game, but when I started playing it, I started liking it. I havent played it in a month, and I am just two trophies away from platinum, and I jus bought all the DLC. All the DLC, the Platinum, and the game itself will keep me busy until this game comes out. A definite buy for me.

Forum Posts: 1125
Comment #9 by GOLDENGAMER2
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 05:03:46 PM
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Forum Posts: 2919
Comment #10 by manga13
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 05:14:24 PM
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This looks awesome, but I definitly won't get the plat if you have to finish hardcore mode.

Forum Posts: 62
Comment #11 by T-K47x
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 06:03:56 PM
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Can't wait for it, Ill probably play first on normal mode as I don't wan't to ruin the game worrying about Hardcore mode, will probably go for it after though. Again GOTY for me just Fallout 3 was in 2008.

Forum Posts: 48486
Comment #12 by Terminator
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 06:12:52 PM
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So long as the crash and freeze bugs are dealt with then I'll be happy :)

Forum Posts: 34
Comment #13 by gazzer09
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 06:49:53 PM
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Forum Posts: 42
Comment #14 by RojoScrolls
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 06:55:51 PM
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Hardcore mode sounds like a fun challenge, probably do it on my 2nd playthrough though

Forum Posts: 70
Comment #15 by The-Jack-Burton
Thursday, August 26, 2010 @ 09:21:25 PM
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Just pre-ordered this the other day. Can't Fn wait.

Forum Posts: 454
Comment #16 by Jjos
Friday, August 27, 2010 @ 01:53:30 AM
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Fallout 3 = real boring
Fallout: New Vegas + Hardcore = challenging

The best improvement between these two games in my eyes.

Forum Posts: 714
Comment #17 by K12UDE
Friday, August 27, 2010 @ 05:02:38 AM
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Sweeeeeeeeeeet, cant wait!!
As with others i'll not try hardcore straight off & leave it for the 2nd play through :0)

Forum Posts: 714
Comment #18 by K12UDE
Friday, August 27, 2010 @ 05:03:33 AM
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No mention of online play... did I read somewhere that there was online play for this or was I dreaming??

Forum Posts: 4
Comment #19 by thedriffter50
Friday, August 27, 2010 @ 07:39:02 AM
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Fallout was a dull and grey game that bored me to sleep. After trading Fallout 3 in 4 times trying to get into it I just couldn't.

Forum Posts: 62
Comment #20 by T-K47x
Friday, August 27, 2010 @ 08:45:27 AM
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@18 you must have been dreaming.

Forum Posts: 1
Comment #21 by gtaguy95
Friday, August 27, 2010 @ 02:47:33 PM
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damn pussies! hardcore ON straight from the beginning

Forum Posts: 72
Comment #22 by tugasx
Saturday, August 28, 2010 @ 03:54:33 PM
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oooooohhh yeeaaaahhh

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Game Info


US October 19, 2010
Europe October 22, 2010
Japan November 04, 2010

Resolution: 480p, 720p
Sound: Dolby 5.1
Players: 1
ESRB: Mature
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