Venture Back into the Wasteland: A Preview of Fallout 4

By Matt Brown
Junior Editor

Created nearby in Rockville, Maryland, “Fallout” is a game series that takes place in the late 21st century after the nuclear apocalypse. The latest installment, “Fallout 4,” is, in my opinion, the greatest of the games I have played. I own “Fallout: New Vegas” and “Fallout 3″ and I think that the fourth installment is the best.

The game has many new features,and  to start, the character creation is absolutely brilliant. Any kind of person you wish to create, you can, no matter how pleasant or unpleasant. I couldn’t wait to play the game, so after playing around with the character creation for a while I decided to use a preset (Preset 07 for those who want to know).

After character creation and the assignment of S.P.E.C.I.A.L. points you are introduced to the United States just before the Nuclear Apocalypse- or “Great War” begins in 2077. Previous “Fallout” games have only eluded to the time known as “Pre-War” but have never really shown us what it was like. When I began, I didn’t understand how the game was going to take you from the Pre-War era up to 2077, to the latest year that “Fallout” has ever shown: 2277. Despite this time jump the game handles the transition very nicely. I won’t reveal any crucial plot points regarding this, so no need to worry.

The Boston Commonwealth “Wasteland” (the term used for the post nuclear landscape) is my favorite so far in the series (and yes, I know Fairfax is a visitable location in “Fallout 3,” which takes place in the D.C. Metropolitan Area). I love this wasteland because of how it is set up. This game features a nice mixture of urban, suburban, and a bit of rural, which is different than “New Vegas’” large desert and “Fallout 3’s” predominantly urban “Capital Wasteland”. There is also more exploration to be done. In “Fallout 4,” you can climb fire escapes and (attempt) to leap across the rooftops of Boston. It all adds a great spirit of adventure to the game.

One thing I have always loved about Bethesda games is that your choices matter, and “Fallout 4″ capitalizes on that. The characters that you associate with can open and close different plotlines, so be very careful when making decisions! For instance, if you are going to side with the faction “Brotherhood of Steel”, you won’t be welcomed with open arms into the “Minutemen” faction, so always do your research about your factions, because it will change the way people talk to you.

The companion system the game features has had many additions made to it. Your companions all have special perks and can approve or disapprove of decisions you make. My current companion is Piper, the reporter from Diamond City, which is supposed to be a settlement in the ruins of Boston’s Fenway Park. Piper will tell you that she wants you to help people, so whenever I do this, she approves of me. If Piper likes me, then I get a perk from her. However, if your companion doesn’t like you, then they can refuse to travel with you and leave. You can also began a romance with your companion, this is something other “Fallout” games have not explored.

Another thing the game has added is the ability to build bases in different settlements. You can send your other companions that you aren’t traveling with (in my case, Dogmeat, Cogsworth, Preston, and Nick Valentine) to go and live in said bases, along with other random characters. You can outfit your base with the necessary defenses it needs and other items such as beds to sleep in.

Other features added to the game are crafting, modifications, radiation storms (self explanatory, I hope), “legendary” enemies, and power armor that necessitates a fusion core to operate (which proves to be very bothersome). Legendary enemies are villains that are very powerful, and if you defeat them you can get very nice rewards. Just a heads up, if you are killed by a legendary creature, it will be gone forever.

The atmosphere of the game is great; the streets and rooftops of Boston hold many different secrets to uncover. Peter Montwill ‘17 describes the game as “Mr. Opfer singing “If You Believe and I Believe” but accompanied by a choir of one million angels.”

My overall opinion of the game is that it is very enjoyable. The new features are a breathe of fresh air into a game that easily could have been repetitive and gotten stale. “Fallout 4″ is definitely a must have and could be a contender for Game of the Year. If you haven’t already, be sure to pick up “Fallout 4″ and start playing today!


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