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Fallout The Outer Worlds quickie

Discussion in 'Obsidian Entertainment' started by Konjad, Nov 9, 2019.

  1. Konjad High on potatoes Patron

    Konjad
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    Obsidian Entertainment is very well known by now by everyone who enjoys RPGs. They have released many titles catering to fans throughout the last decade, after their debut in 2004 with Knights of the Old Republic and Neverwinter Nights 2 in 2006. In 2010 they have released Fallout: New Vegas, which I’d argue is the best game they have managed to make, and since it is Bethesda who owns the franchise Obsidian decided to make their own Fallout-like game. This game is what has finally realized in 2019. Knowing all the well-written dialogues, quests and stories from Fallout New Vegas, but at the same time its below average gameplay and clunky mechanics, one probably expects The Outer Worlds to be a similar product. In theory it is, if one asked me what’s so different about these two games I’d have to think about differences, on the other hand albeit at first similar they seem yet to be so far apart once you begin to play. Let me explain what The Outer Worlds is.


    The beginning

    Starting the game the player gets to watch the intro which basically explains the major points of the whole story as well as create a character. The story is fairly simple – the powers that be decided to freeze lots of people in hibernation and leave them at that state for a prolonged time as it was infeasible to sustain them due to overpopulation. However, lone old guy wakes you up and sends on a quest to oppose the corporation and make it possible to wake everyone up.

    The character creation is simple and clear and what we’ve seen in many other RPGs. There’s a set of attributes and skills to raise in order to be better at some particular action. It’s important to note that whatever our choice is during character creation will not have a huge impact as there’s no problem to become master of the sword or a gunslinger even if you completely ignored statistics required and created person dedicated to diplomacy. I wanted to make a pacifist run, but few hours later gave up on this and just murdered lots of people, including city guards, and had no trouble doing it on ‘hard’ difficulty.



    How I became empty and humorless shell of a being

    Once the game begins it doesn’t take long until the player meets the first NPC on their path. It was then that I already realized the writing is definitely not on par with many previous games made by Obsidian. The very short dialogue was full of unfunny jokes that threw away any hopes of absorbing writing out of the window. The next few NPCs I’ve met on my path did not reverse the feeling and once I got into the first settlement, I fully understood the game is not about interesting story or side stories. Neither it is about any future utopia, hopelessness of resistance against powers, future scientific discoveries or technologies, or any cultural, moral, political doctrines or dilemmas. It is none of that. While playing Deus Exes one could see the accumulation and surge of various social issues closing to a boiling point or at least lying in wait, it was not a game Obsidian ever took any example from. Instead, The Outer Worlds is about cracking jokes. Not even funny ones, in fact in hundreds or thousands of jokes I read in this game I did not laugh even once. Perhaps they were so unfunny, perhaps there was simply too many of them that even if there was something entertaining, I was already too insensible. I couldn’t stand it. It is probably the first RPG where not only I did not feel bad about murdering random passer byes or even quest givers, but in fact I enjoyed it. It felt like even if I doom humanity by killing too many people, it will save the entire universe in the long run by ensuring not one more joke will be ever articulated. Hence, this was the first role-playing game in which I became murderous psychopath to push story forward as it let me avoid listening to more NPCs and dialogues.
    Story has its moments

    If one endures the jokes then there might be something in-between them. While the story unveils and the player learns new details, the main quests does have intriguing quests, albeit not many of them. If not for the constant humor that feels out of place and if for a bit more polish and details, the story might have been engrossing, but as it stands it is not enough to make one play the game. The worst offender is that the main quest is too linear. The player has only two choices at some point – to side either with the odd scientist from the intro, or the corporation he opposes. I was trying to figure out a way to act against both of them and doing both sides’ quests in order to undermine any of them as much as possible. Unfortunately, try as I might, the game forced me to choose one of them. I could not be a third option or ignore the issue. I was not given an obvious choice as I believe. I understand that it was supposed to be a difficult moment showing there is no clear safe choice and the player must decide between two insecure options. However, why must one either support a bizarre overzealous old guy without a clear plan or a corporative tyranny that is efficient but punishes any sign of discord with death or has no problem removing people they do not need anymore. Why is there no middle ground at all? The Witcher allowed the player to side with no one. It was a punishing choice and the worst one for the player, however, the choice was theirs to make. Many other RPGs also give players different choices, including Fallout: New Vegas that allowed siding with different factions or none of them. Why is it not the case here?

    It is worth to be noted there are minor choices throughout the game. Alas, it often feels there’s not enough of choices or the consequences are minor or non-existent except the ending slides. Side quests get boring quickly as they are usual fetch quests. Similarly, I did not feel compelled to do quests issued by my party members unless something was on the way, because neither they were interesting nor I felt anything about any of these characters. As a matter of fact, there are no interesting characters whatsoever in the entire game, besides perhaps the person from the intro. I finished the entire game remembering only NPCs that were most annoying, not most amusing. The characters in the entire game are atrocious.

    The very peculiar thing of the future is, apparently, complete lack of children. In the future there are only adults. I don’t remember the game mentioning humans to breed in any different way than nowadays, so unless I missed it, it seems extremely odd to me. There was no information about it in the game to which extend I could find. I must have missed it somehow?



    Open world with HP sponges

    The moment I met the first enemy I partly hid behind a rock, pointed my gun at the enemy’s head and shot. I was so surprised that he did not die. He just turned around and started shooting at me. Then I had to shoot him about 10 more times until he dropped dead. I understand that such games have their fans. Popularity of Borderlands seems to be a proof. Nevertheless, for a person who enjoys more realistic approach to combat, this is simply backward mechanics that evaporates any enjoyment of gunplay. However, it is a subjective feeling and I’d not be surprised if it has its fans.

    On a positive side, the world is almost fully open after the first area. It is up to the player when and where to go and what to do. It’s possible to ignore the main quest and just travel around doing side quests. This is something that needs to be regarded high as many games tend to diverge towards linearity. Although the main quest does not provide enough choices, the order of any quest is up to the player. It is also possible to finish, botch or otherwise never find out quests due to death of NPCs, especially easy when it is caused by the player themselves. Everyone is mortal and sometimes third party can die in a crossfire, which positively adds to the (already significantly lacking) realism and setting.
    Audiovisuals

    The game world looks fair. It has some decently looking locations, but at the same time outside locations seem tiny. One could run from one side to the other of most locations within one minute, maybe three across the largest one and mostly only because of artificially extended time due to avoiding enemies. None location will make anyone stop and appreciate surroundings, but at the same time I cannot say there was something wrong with them. However, some places are way too colorful, mixing the palette so much that it’s hard on the eyes. Characters look well detailed and equipment looks silly, but detailed as was clearly the game’s intention. Overall, graphics are well done. Surroundings could use more though-through and planning as they seem to tiny and too many minor locations are tightly packed. Nonetheless, outsides are acceptable, one could wish they were larger though.

    Voice acting is decent. I imagine it might have been a joy to listen to dialogues if only they were well written. The same cannot be said of any other sounds – there are way too few sounds of surroundings. Being outside is just being in a big room. It all seems too quiet and empty. The sounds during combat, such as gun shots, sound flat and fake too. Perhaps they fight with pop guns, hence one needs so many bullets to harm anyone. Audio is certainly an aspect that lacks a lot in this game.



    Conclusion

    To sum up, The Outer Worlds has been a huge disappointment in multiple aspects, but especially in writing. Dialogues and quests are not keeping one’s attention, the main goal seems not to engross the player in an intriguing story and possible humankind ascension into the age of high-technology, but instead the game’s aim is to crack jokes and if you don’t find these jokes funny the entire game will be a chore to play. It certainly does not seem to have much in common with Fallout: New Vegas, although in theory the gameplay does look alike until one starts to play it and realizes that developers’ vision is completely different. One cannot enjoy open world exploring much as areas are too small and there is too little to see. Combat might find its fans but most will probably dislike it. Therefore, my final conclusion is that I cannot recommend this game to any fan of role-playing games. I doubt FPS players will find entertaining gameplay either, but some might give it a go for a cheap price. This is a game to be forgotten by those who decide to play it and never to be looked back at.

    PS. Thanks to Wunderbar and Daidre for screenshots!
     
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2019
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  2. LizardWizard Arbiter

    LizardWizard
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    This is really dumb. I question how much you actually played the game. Your 'HP sponge' claims stems from from fighting something with starter gear at level 2? Comparing it to Borderlands is also laughable

    Once you throw on a mod or two, tinker equipment, raise your damage skills or simply pick up a plasma rifle that same enemy you're deeming a HP sponge can easily be deleted in a second or two
     
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  3. Konjad High on potatoes Patron

    Konjad
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    I finished the game.

    The combat system strikes me as stupid and an afterthought. There's basically no damage system besides "detract 10 HP from 100". It's something that is acceptable in games where combat is only an addition to a gameplay (and still stupid, but acceptable), but in a game that looks like an FPS and plays like an FPS it is an abomination.

    Shot in the head should cause death. In this game you can waste a whole magazine on an enemy and he's still at his best fighting ability because it just detracted some health points.

    I did not use mods and I did not review mods. My review is about pure unmodded game, obviously. Should we consider Oblivion what it is only after 100 GB of mods improving gameplay?
     
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  4. Grauken friEndly mUrderpUmpkin Patron

    Grauken
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    It's sold as an RPG not a FPS
     
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  5. LizardWizard Arbiter

    LizardWizard
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    No you didn't :lol:

    Headshots in TTD can blind etc and most everything in the game is deleted in less than 1 TTD clip via headshots with a guns build
     
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  6. Junmarko Arcane Patron

    Junmarko
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    Grab the Codex by the pussy Bubbles In Memoria Pillars of Eternity 2: Deadfire
    In-game "weapon mods" you nonce lol.
     
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  7. agentorange Arcane Patron

    agentorange
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    Great review. One major problem I agree with about Outer Worlds and so many modern games in general is the writers have a seeming inability to take themselves and the their fictional world seriously. Even if they dance around the fringe of a serious subject matter they always have to immediately lay a few jokes in so as to make sure things do not get too serious or dark and thereby risk offending someone. This has nothing to do with presence or absence of humor either, you can have a game filled with humor and even jokes that takes itself seriously (Fallout and VTMB for example.)
     
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  8. Reapa Doom Preacher

    Reapa
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    you forgot to mention the player character's inventory is just 2 slots.
    you forgot to mention the player character is butt ugly.
    you forgot to mention the itemization even for those 2 slots is both weak and ugly. which of course leads to other problems like every merchant and vending machine having the same shit on display making both them and the game economy completely useless.
    you forgot to mention the sjw agenda.
    and level scaling on items with mk 2 types for weapons.
    and the retarded weapon types that don't allow mods like silencers for no reason.
    and the huge food/beverage/drugs variety with shit like +something stupid for 20 sec just for the illusion of itemization and loot.
    and fast travel.
    and respawning enemies.
    and npc hubs / enemy territory. with one or 2 exceptions everything you meet out in the world is hostile by default. the game is a fucking zombie shooter. literally. it even acknowledges that and vomits some reasons at you for why marauders are always hostile. and then fails to give any reason for why they don't just kill each other. that's just how much thought was put into the zombies.
    and while you can side with the corporations, the game doesn't really want you to and makes sure to remind you of that at every step. even the npcs that are naturally on the side of the corporations because of their high position in the chain of command usually tell you they don't like the corporations but need them for survival for some reason. maybe because the planets they live on have invisible walls so gathering any resources that happen to be on any other side of the planet then the one you happen to be exploring is impossible even with access to spaceships...
    you forgot to mention the size of the explorable chunks on the planets. it's fucking small.
    you forgot to mention the huge abundance of loot containers all containing the same food/bullets/1 of ~6 possible weapons and credits which can buy you food/bullets and 1 of ~6 possible weapons.
    you forgot to mention that the game does have unique weapons with very common effects like cycling the 4 dmg types on hit instead of just one type. wow
     
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  9. ScrotumBroth Disco balls Patron

    ScrotumBroth
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    Grab the Codex by the pussy
    Great effort OP, inB4 a positive neutral review is posted in News.
     
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  10. Darth Roxor Prestigious Gentleman Wielder of the Huegpenis

    Darth Roxor
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    why is this content not on the front page
     
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  11. Nael Arcane

    Nael
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    Guess I'll wait for discounted Steam price 10 years from now. I watched a LP of it last night and the writing is what stood out to me. Just cringy and awful.
     
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  12. laclongquan Arcane

    laclongquan
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    Bad writings is bad news.

    Because it's impossible to fix bad writings.

    See Fallout 3 for examples~
     
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  13. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    Too shit a game for the amount of threads it's getting.
     
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  14. Bricker Educated

    Bricker
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    I like reviews like this! Thanks for posting.
     
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  15. Atchodas Savant Edgy

    Atchodas
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    because its not shill enough :negative:
     
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  16. MadMaxHellfire Arcane

    MadMaxHellfire
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    forgive my devilsadvocateness, but there's more to it than that. hits to legs can slow down, to the arm can disarm (pun not intended), to the head can confuse or cause blindness... the issue here is that you can notice this only on supernova, where they make no difference, while even if they're present at lower difficulty levels (i didn't check firsthand) it'd not matter because stuff dies with a single hit anyway.
    "a shot in the head should cause death" yes, most of the times yes, but most of the enemies wear helmets. first muskets couldn't perforate plate armor, tech levels could be different.

    but the game sucks anyway.

    edit: no, no no, nonononono, wait, just noticed this:
    are you serious? are you fucking serious? for real? he's talking about WEAPON MODIFICATIONS, IN-FUCKING-GAME FUCKING WEAPON FUCKING MODIFICATIONS, not mods. you can't have finished the tutorial and not met a mod. just can't.
    congratulations, you just voided your review, and maybe past and future.
     
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  17. Konjad High on potatoes Patron

    Konjad
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    Well, the meaning flew over my head at the time. What can I say. My mistake.


    My guess is that Infinitron insta-trashed it as it wasn't neutral-positive enough. But that's a wild guess, I have no access to content sub-forums but I was told my review did not even appear there (hence I know it was insta-trashed). Infinitron told me there's "already another review in works" hence mine is worthless.

    We can't just criticize Obsidian on the store page, can we?


    EDIT:

    Maybe I should have written a paragraph on combat. I skipped it thinking people wouldn't be interested much anyway, but it seems it led to misunderstandings.

    Yes, you can one-shoot enemies. The thing is, it depends on the weapon and skills. However, in my opinion, even unskilled person should just one-shoot kill anyone assuming the person doesn't miss. It should be hard to hit the enemy, but not just decrease the amount of damage.
     
    Last edited: Nov 10, 2019
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  18. Fedora Master Arcane Patron

    Fedora Master
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    Tow isn't funny for the same reason the left can't meme: Intellectually sub-par employees and a culture of walking on egg shells.
     
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