‘Fallout 4’ is the bomb

Bethesda games elicit a certain feeling of curiosity and lust for exploration from their players, and Fallout 4 is no exception. Since Fallout was released in 1997 by Interplay Entertainment, gamers have enjoyed the series, which centers around the aftermath of a devastating nuclear apocalypse.

It was made increasingly more popular when Fallout 3 was released in 2008 by Bethesda Game Studios. The newest addition has been long awaited, and the trailer in June of this year sparked much excitement on the Internet.

It seems as if Bethesda has reused certain elements that fans have thoroughly enjoyed from Fallout 3 in Fallout 4. For example, the landscape in Fallout 4 is similar to Fallout 3, which has a mix of barren terrain as well as the ruins of famous cities. Fallout 4 is set in Massachusetts, in an area known as “The Commonwealth.” The map of The Commonwealth is rich with fictional locations, such as Diamond City, Goodneighbor, the Institute, the Glowing Sea and Sanctuary Hills. Every nook and cranny in Fallout 4 is full of details and stories, with enough content to keep players occupied for hundreds of hours.

The premise follows a character in the year 2077 who escapes nuclear annihilation by hiding in an underground vault with his/her family. The protagonist is cryogenically frozen and awoken over 200 years later, in a now-destroyed Boston. The game’s theme is about hope and trying to continue life after losing your loved ones.

As far as gameplay goes, Fallout 4 plays like a combination of Fallout 3 and The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim, a major Bethesda success from 2011. Fallout 4 borrows and improves upon Skyrim’s crafting system while still utilizing gameplay mechanisms from Fallout 3, such as the aiming system and Pip-Boy.

The Pip-Boy is a machine that the protagonist wears on his/her wrist, which can be used to access the map, inventory and information about the current quest. Both Skyrim and Fallout 3 are made in the Creation Engine, so character animations look similar, although Fallout 4’s animations are noticeably more realistic.

Graphically, the game has received complaints because it is not as visually pleasing as other 2015 titles, but many players such as myself have no issue with the look of Fallout 4. What is surprising, however, is that even though the game’s graphics are not anything amazing, many fans’ computers and consoles have framerate issues. Certain locations, such as Diamond City and downtown Boston cause players to have a noticeably lower frames per second, leading to a much less enjoyable experience. Even though the visuals should not be so taxing, they still are, meaning that Fallout 4 is poorly optimized.

Fallout 4 brings a lot to the table and could easily satisfy someone who enjoys role-playing games. It manages to successfully combine fast-paced action, tough decisions and trekking through a barren wasteland, while still making it interesting. There is so much to do that I can hardly imagine anyone getting bored of Fallout 4 soon.