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War…war never changes. Unless it has. Has it? The war has changed. November 10th marked the release of Fallout 4 in the US, and it was heralded as the perfect next step in the Fallout series. The numbers from that release prove its notoriety. Seeing higher first-day player numbers than even Skyrim, Fallout 4 is easily the breakout hit of 2015, and it’s easy to see why. Bethesda brought back a lot of the features that players loved from previous incarnations of the series. The Vault-tec Assisted Targeting System (V.A.T.S.), the open world exploration, the Brotherhood of Steel, and everyone’s favorite wrist mounted tech, the Pip-Boy.

Even with this return to some of our favorite features, we’re seeing innovation as well as all new features. Exploration takes place in a whole new location, the Boston Mass area, including iconic cities like Concord, Lexington, and Cambridge. Despite these cities being ruined by nuclear war and fallout (wink) the cityscapes are excellently rendered and offer you a wonderful view. Exploring these areas can help you locate new places for settlements, as well as unlocking new quest points. Settlements, being a new feature, allow you to actually build a new life within the world of Fallout 4. You can customize buildings, plant farms, grow your population, and even gather resources such as: Power, Water, and Food. All is not safe in the aftermath of Nuclear Apocalypse, however, so you’ll need to fortify your settlements against Raiders, and the occasional mutated animal.

Aside from the settlements, V.A.T.S. has also seen a little upgrade. It no longer freezes time, merely slows it down, keeping the battlefield dynamic and offering alternate targeting options for the more tactical player. Should you take the proper perk, V.A.T.S. can even give you directions to your next quest objective. As in previous Fallout games, you will encounter both Raiders and the Brotherhood of Steel, however, due to the game taking place mainly in Boston, a new group can be encountered. This new group, known as the Minutemen, offer the player additional options for quests and rewards. The Brotherhood of Steel has also seen a bit of improvement. You can join the Brotherhood, and upon finishing a quest chain, obtain your own suit of Power Armor. Acting more like a mech than just a suit of armor, the Power Armor has its own stats, and upgrades, and can even be customized with parts from other Power Armor sets.

As of this writing, we haven’t played through the entire story mode yet, and we’re excited to see what the world of Fallout 4 has to offer. The following is personal opinions of both casters on Fallout 4.

Gooberjack: I’ve taken a co-pilot seat for the game, and even though I’m just watching it being played, it still feels immersive. I’ve panicked at the sight of Deathclaws, laughed at the dialogue options, and cheered during victories. I will eventually have the opportunity to play the game for myself, and I’m certainly looking forward to it. With the many options available for players, spoilers don’t really apply as the game adjusts to the player as they go.

Valendro: The game is beautiful and incredibly immersive. There is so much going on on-screen that it almost feels like the FOV is smaller than previous games when, in fact, it isn’t. You can get attacked from any side without warning, increasing the immersion and tension. As someone who enjoys games with a party mechanic, I don’t like that they’ve limited your companions to a single A.I. companion, however, that is the only negative mark this game can get. Everything else has been positives.

As with any game that has ally A.I. there are bugs. Your companion can get stuck on doors and walls, won’t follow properly, and will even sometimes run into hostile areas while you are trying to be stealthy. This doesn’t really hurt the game play much and is pretty much just an understood issue with ANY game that relies on companion A.I.

So, on a scale of Daikatana to Final Fantasy XI, we here at Random Encounters give Fallout 4 on Xbox One: A solid 9 oudda 10 would Fallout again. Godspeed Vault-dweller! The wasteland relies on YOU and what makes you S.P.E.C.I.A.L.!
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Gooberjack

  • About the Gooberjack

    Alias: Bobby Spencer
    Age: 29
    Favorite Game: Star Wars Battlefront II (Xbox)
    Favorite Genre: Action Adventure
    Special Move: Pork Fat Express

    Bio: A throwback gamer from the days of yore, Gooberjack’s first gaming system was a Nintendo Entertainment system. At the time, his favorite games were Tiger Heli and Super Mario Bros. Since then, his tastes in games has evolved and expanded. Now knowledgeable in table top games, card games, PC and console games, his quest for the Ultimate Gaming Experience continues. 

Valendro

  • Valendro's Details

    Alias: John Fruitger
    Age: 30
    Favorite Game: Final Fantasy XI (Xbox360)
    Favorite Genre: RPG/ARPG
    Special Move: Unimaginable Narcissism

    Bio: While other children were raving about their new Sega CD systems, Valendro was rocking out oldschool to Atari. Whether it was blasting space boulders in space in Asteroids, bombing warships in Sea Hawk, or braving the harrowing jungles of Pitfall, his gaming ability stayed true. It wasn’t until gainful employment allowed him to purchase a PS2, that he joined the mainstream with the original Kingdom Hearts. He yearns to revive the Gaming Communities of old, promoting brotherhood and oneness across all platforms.

LumberMoose

  • The Lumbering LumberMoose

    Alias: The Wild Canadian LumberMoose
    Age: Unknown
    Favorite Game: Unknown
    Favorite Genre: Unknown

    Bio: Not much is known about this (gentle?) giant, like is he gentle? Or a giant? Okay, we do know he is a giant. His first console was a pinecone tied to a pigeon. This discovery of entertainment left him looking for more. After a chipmunk in a hole with a squirrel, bicycle horn, handful of acorns, the plastic rings from a soda six-pack, and a vinyl record couldn’t keep his attention anymore, he joined Random Encounters to see where his imagination could go.

Gaming Systems

  • Xbox 360
  • Xbox One
  • Potato-tron 3000 (Gooberjack's PC)
    1. CPU: Intel Core 2 Duo (3.16GHz)
    2. RAM: 4GB
    3. GPU: XFX Radeon HD 6850
    4. Motherboard: EVGA


Gaming News

Confessions Of A Criminal Mastermind

So I have a problem. I like stealing things. It is a challenge to see if I can get in and get out with the goods without getting seen. One time I even stole my own pants from me while I wasn’t looking. That being said, I have to say that Payday 2 is a game I can really get into.
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Opinions of a Vault Dweller

War…war never changes. Unless it has. Has it? The war has changed. November 10th marked the release of Fallout 4 in the US, and it was heralded as the perfect next step in the Fallout series. The numbers from that release prove its notoriety. Seeing higher first-day player numbers than even Skyrim, Fallout 4 is easily the breakout hit of 2015, and it’s easy to see why. Bethesda brought back a lot of the features that players loved from previous incarnations of the series. The Vault-tec Assisted Targeting System (V.A.T.S.), the open world exploration, the Brotherhood of Steel, and everyone’s favorite wrist mounted tech, the Pip-Boy.
Hits: 326

Springfield G.A.M.E.

Our journey began with a phone call. We had no idea what would come of it, and honestly, we didn’t expect anything to happen. John (Valendro) had put a call in to the Springfield offices for Children’s Miracle Network simply on a whim. We’d attempted the 24 hour Extra-Life game day the year before, and though we made some donations, we felt it wasn’t enough. We wanted to do more, and BE more. With that as his motivation, John left a message with the associate director Justin Bess. It wasn’t much longer until we got word back from Justin that we were just what CMN was looking for in Springfield. We were ecstatic about this as it was our chance, as Random Encounters, to do something amazing as gamers and as a company.
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