A Love Letter to Fallout: New Vegas

Dear Fallout: New Vegas,

It’s been almost one year since we last saw each other.

“It’s not you, it’s me.” That’s what I told you back then, after that long summer.  “I’m sorry, this just won’t work out. I’ve got school. I’ll be too busy for your open world, your complicated multi-part quests, your endless PSN trophies.”

We both know why I really left, though.  I was on the rebound, and you were just a fling.  I had just finished Fallout 3 and was looking for the same sort of thrill, and then there you were, a dead ringer for my lost love.  How could I resist? How could things possibly go wrong?

Rebounds never work, though.  I know that now.  Only time can heal the pain of a loss.  It was too easy to notice what I believed were your flaws, your seeming-imperfections:

“Well, Fallout 3 took place in D.C., and that was awesome. That was a METROPOLIS wasteland. What the hell is this Nevada shit you’re pushing, Fallout: New Vegas? Nevada looks like a wasteland even without a nuke.”

 

Can you tell the difference?

 

NEITHER CAN I.

 

“And where are all the Supermutants? Oh, hiding on a goddamn mountain playing at being radio DJs? What sort of threat is that? Why am I shooting at GIANT SCORPIONS and STRAY DOGS instead of Supermutants?? YOU AREN’T TRYING HARD ENOUGH, FALLOUT: NEW VEGAS.”

That was then.

I never thought I would say this, but…

I want you back.

The distance has helped. I’m now charmed by your endless wasteland — I mean, I always hated getting stuck in the mazes of metal in Fallout 3, right? You saw me, pounding my fist into my controller with each dead end that looked like it should have led directly to my next objective.  And hey, Fallout: New Vegas, your quests are actually pretty good, the closer I get to Vegas.  The human enemies in your warring factions and doped up gangs are also kind of cool, and the Classics major in me finds massacring dudes who speak Latin kind of heartwarming.

So, um… if it’s not too late… I was wondering… do you want to give this a second chance?

No promises. I mean, summer is kind of short, and I’ve got real life stuff to do too, and a couple other games I might want to fool around with a bit (sorry!!!), and there is just a boatload of content packed into you.  Way too much for a busy gamer to consume in just a few weeks.

But if you think you can handle all of that, I’d like to give this another shot. I think we could have some fun.

So, what do you say, Fallout: New Vegas? Will you forgive me?

Love,

Barb

  • http://padinga.com/members/don-jaime-2/ Don Jaime

    Fallout 3 was the first game I bought after I got a 360, and I was certainly not disappointed. I can’t remember how many hours I dumped into that exploring and doing sidequests before accidentally stumbling across the plot again (and causing some minor quest glitches in the process).

    The Mojave Wasteland certainly has a much different feel to that of the Capital’s.
    I’ll admit myself that while having only a few formerly civilized ruins to plunder felt like a setback at first, I got over it and actually appreciated decimating varmints in the wide open desert and exploring what little ruins that surround the Strip even more. While it had a bunch of bugs (you probably made the best decision coming back to it once most of that was fixed) and some of the same annoyances as its predecessor like the crappy outdated randomly freezing Gambryo engine, stupid “every floor sandwich” maps, lackluster framerates / unnatural humanoid and small enemy movement that make them hard to shoot when not in VATS (might just be the 360 version, I have no idea), I felt it’s still worth the money and playtime.

    Good on you for crawling back to its loving embrace.

    It does come with its own new problems though, like feeling like a giant expansion pack at times. About half of the locations seem somewhat pointless as well as all you get is a mazagine that gets you excited at first as you’re thinking you’re about to pick up a skill book, or you have to trudge through a nest of night stalkers just to find yet another unique melee weapon which doesn’t beat whatever you picked up five hours ago (although to the game’s defense you can’t just stumble around anywhere realistically and expect everything you find to be horribly useful). There’s no more freakin’ bobbleheads (sorry, snow globes that only sell for caps I can win from playing Caravan or selling stuff out of my “storage oven” and a limited number of stat improvements based on my endurance don’t count as a replacement). You only get a perk every -other- level now (which does require a little more specialization/forethought in contrast to the last game). The new guns and special ammo don’t seem to stand up to my weapons of choice from Fallout 3, and speaking of which I’m more than sad that you can’t add mods to unique weapons and even sadder that they nerfed the original DAM/DPS for the sniper rifle then turned around and nerfed that sucker again. That was my most used weapon in 3 and I’ll be damned if they didn’t pull the rug right out from under me. In exchange for that grievance, however, they did bless us with the Pulse Gun, the best darn-tootinest anti-robot weapon ever. I can’t believe I used to dread Sentry Bots. Heh, don’t let that piddly displayed damage in the item screen fool you, that thing’s a freakin beast to machines.

    I feel like breaking it out again now and making an evil character that sides with scum like the Legion and the Powder Gangers. I’m really curious as to how some of that plotline would go, as my first meeting with Vulpes Inculta when I was at level 5 or 6 left him and his men missing heads, limbs and various other parts thanks to crafty trapping with frag mines, frantic shooting and running like hell. While that was fairly taxing playing on normal difficulty with Hardcore Mode on, I had a lot of fun doing that. That’s one thing I liked about New Vegas, was that I found myself being more crafty and trappy than before thanks to prior experience with 3.

    I also liked the fact they took an idea from that one PC Fallout 3 mod and added Hardcore mode. The survival skill was useful for that and actually gave foodstuffs a purpose which was mostly missing from 3. Combat’s got consequences as well when you can’t just use stimpacks to instaheal or repair busted limbs or carry every weapon you want because ammo now has weight. It’ll make you better at combat, that’s for sure, but man… is it freaking annoying. I never had an issue with food, water or rest but it was merely a chore in which I had to keep 5 waters and 5 gecko steaks on hand at all times and I was forced to make Goodsprings my permanent base of operations as it was sorta in the middle of the map and halfway between most of my heavily travelled locations. Good riddance. My next character won’t have to endure that crap at least, but they could have given you more for your troubles than just an achievement. Oh well.

    I could go on for a few more paragraphs about what’s awesome, but anyone who’s ever played it and liked it knows already. In closing, you owe it to yourself to pick it back up. Even if there is a severe lack of supermutants, there’s still plenty of people and creatures with an appetite for hot lead and energy beams. Even if there’s no complexity on the surface, it lies within. There’s still way more to explore than meets the eye. And most importantly, whenever grandma’s got a present for you…I suggest you take it!