Fallout: New Vegas

Fallout: New Vegas Preview for Xbox 360

On: Xbox 360PS3PC
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9Out of 10
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Fallout: New Vegas screenshot
Fallout: New Vegas screenshot

Oh, Fallout 3's companions. They were annoying, weren't they, often getting lost and stuck in endless pathfinding conundrums? Hopefully, that'll be a thing of the past, because in New Vegas you can control your buddies with a companion wheel interface. It provides all of the options that were present for managing your companions in Fallout 3 without having to go into dialogue. You can have them take stimpacks, change their status from passive to aggressive and switch their loadouts all with only a couple of button presses.

So far, we only know two potential companions: Craig Boone, an ex-New California Republic soldier now defending the town of Novak from Ceaser's Legion troops, and Raul, a Mexican ghoul held captive by the super mutants inside the Black Mountain radio hut. I live in hope that a dog once again tags along for the ride.

While New Vegas' combat looks to have more depth than Fallout 3's, and there are a number of new weapons that look inspired, it's the quests and the locations that most impress. There's a clever one in the Black Mountain. Here, you'll find Nightkin, tough first generation super mutants who were part of the Master's army in Fallout 1. You'll also find a group of second generation super mutants that came from the military base in Fallout 2. Thankfully they're not as strong or as smart as the Nightkin. Tabitha, the Nightkin's disturbed leader, calls them "dumb dumbs".

The quest here involves turning the super mutants against each other by exploiting their paranoia. To do this, you interrupt the warning broadcast, convincing Tabitha that the dumb dumbs are revolting with a unique dialogue option prompted by your high speech skill (New Vegas will have loads of specialised dialogue options, tied into all of your abilities). Then, you sit back and watch the mutants go at it. But, as is often the case, you also get roped into the killing – and the situation calls for some serious firepower. Luckily, Chris has the grenade machine gun. Yes, the grenade machine gun. "It still makes me laugh when I hear about it," Chris says with a smile. "When I heard about it from our project director, he was like, it's a machine gun, but it fires grenades!" A mod increases its rate of fire, which just isn't fair. Poor super mutants.

Fallout: New Vegas screenshot

The great thing about the Fallout games is they allow you to complete quests in different ways, often via some gleefully sadistic choices. In New Vegas, however, not only will you have multiple options, but you’ll also have to contend with reputation. Back at Goodsprings, you end up deciding the fate of the entire town: After a Powder Ganger called Joe Cobb threatens to burn the place to the ground, you can convince the locals to get together for a last stand, ally with Cobb, or just ignore the whole situation. Help the town, and your reputation with Goodsprings will improve. In an NCR base called Helios One, what was once a solar energy plant built by Poseidon Energy, you can activate an orbital beam weapon, called Archimedes II, and destroy the entire encampment, reducing your reputation with the faction to rubble.

The reputation system is one of New Vegas' most interesting new mechanics. Chris promises that you'll be able to gain and lose reputation with all the major factions in the game, including the two potential "bad guy groups": the New California Republic and Caesar's Legion (the Brotherhood of Steel are in the game, but we don't know why). If you fancy it, you can piss them both off, which should make traversing the Mojave Wasteland particularly dangerous. But just how sophisticated the reputation system is, and how it can affect the story, remains a mystery, as does much of New Vegas' intriguing plot.

So yeah, first impressions can be misleading. After spending an hour with the game, I'm convinced New Vegas will be a brilliant, albeit familiar experience. The doubters will no doubt continue to doubt (though the Strip, yet to be revealed, may help in this regard). The quests we've seen look interesting, complex and fun. The writing strikes a similar tone to Fallout 3's, which will either disappoint if you're a Fallout traditionalist or delight if you're a Fallout 3 enthusiast. The combat looks the same, frankly. And the graphics... well, they do look tired. But digging beneath New Vegas' dusty surface reveals an open world role-playing game of huge promise. Second impressions, here we come.

Fallout: New Vegas is due out on the PC, Xbox 360 and PS3 this autumn.

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User Comments

dazzadavie's Avatar


Can not wait for this to be put in my cd tray as I don't think it will be coming out for a long time just as Fallout 3 did.

Great preview to Wes
Posted 23:18 on 05 May 2010
scaz2244's Avatar


sounds awesome cant wait for this game!! yeah fallout 3 did have its problems i hope they sort them out but either way im going to buy this maybe day 1 iif they show some of the strip at e3!.
Posted 17:57 on 05 May 2010
jakeistheman's Avatar


great preview, still my second most anticipated though(Red dead redemption anyone).
Posted 21:25 on 04 May 2010


sounds friggin' awesome
Posted 18:15 on 04 May 2010
K3RT's Avatar


On the graphics my main gripe was the third person view it just didn't look right when he was walking or running so I hope thats improved.
Posted 18:13 on 04 May 2010
Wido's Avatar


Really enjoyed Fallout 3. New Vegas sounds very good besides looking like Fallout 3 with no graphical improvements. I guess the "why change something, when it isn't broken?" comes into play?

I'm looking forward to this game and I can't wait till E3. Hopefully New Vegas will get a spot like Fallout 3 did.
Posted 17:58 on 04 May 2010
Clockpunk's Avatar

Clockpunk@ SexyJams

Oh yes - Fallout, Fable, Borderlands, Oblivion, Mass Effect, Dragon Age - even Street Fighter 2!! - any games of that ilk and we tend to have to barter for console time - especially now she's really gotten into them. ;) It's quite nice just chillaxing and watching someone else play, especially when they go for evil options more than yourself. :p
Posted 16:59 on 04 May 2010
SexyJams's Avatar


Gosh, what an awesome preview.
You're lucky you have a partner that likes games as much as you Clockpunk,
I can only imagine it's awesome, even if it does pose problems with sharing games :p
Posted 16:25 on 04 May 2010
Clockpunk's Avatar


The ONE problem I forsee with this title is that my partner is going to want to play through it as soon as it arrives, as well as myself... Looks amazing, and the Hardcore mode sounds challeging but fun!
Posted 16:17 on 04 May 2010
K3RT's Avatar


Well I for one am looking forward to this esp the hardcore mode as fallout 3 was very easy once you levelled up abit.
Posted 15:15 on 04 May 2010

Game Stats

Technical Specs
Release Date: 22/10/2010
Developer: Obsidian Entertainment
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Genre: RPG
Rating: PEGI 18+
Site Rank: 2,140 327
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