I'm currently at Gamescom in Cologne, here to bring you my very own impressions on Fallout: New Vegas. I've only had the opportunity to play the game for a short while so far - the lines are huge, unfortunately, but I'll try to get another peek at the game later. Lots of spoilers ahead, so beware! Just some facts about the game here, I'll also post my personal impressions later. For now, here's just a random collection of facts and names.
The demo, which you've probably read about in dozens of previews already, starts just outside The Strip, in a settlement called Freeside. The active quest at the start of the demo is Ring-A-Ding-Ding, and the objective to confront Benny in the Tops casino.”
An excerpt of Dealspwn's preview:
We’d heard about the incredible roster of guest talent lending their voices to the project, we’d read about and witnessed the drip-fed, carefully released additions to the burgeoning narrative, marvelling at the possibilities of what relocating to Vegas might mean for the series, we’d drooled over the new features, the factions, the companion wheel, the hardcore mode and context sensitive VATS.
We saw absolutely none of that.
After carefully sidestepping several borked preview stations, I managed to leap into the game and for a moment I thought something had gone terribly wrong. For a moment I thought I was back in the Capital Wasteland. The preview took place in a rundown part of town that seemed more sparse than the air in between Katie Price’s ears. All of the skills were minimal, the opportunities for missions bland and, as Jon found out when his quest giver mysteriously vanished off of the face of the planet, or when my character suddenly developed the ability to walk halfway into the wall of a building and get stuck, somewhat buggy.
Now I don’t expect every game to astound or wow me, I don’t expect the merits of a 20-30 hour title to be squished completely into the space of half an hour but a little bit of effort would have been nice. Something tangible to highlight something different would have been nice. That’s not too much to ask is it?”
Joystiq adds its own preview about FNV. Here is a little taste:
The main difference here is that rather than just wandering out into the Wasteland looking for Dad, you start out with a conflict. While there is the expected opening montage ("War" still hasn't changed -- surprise!) explaining the in-game factions like the New California Republic and the Caesar's Legion, the scene quickly changes to a first-person view, at which point a Vegas swinger type in a zoot suit apologizes for your bad luck, shoots you in the face and leaves you for dead. That's a far cry from the first game's Vault mini-story, and while I appreciated Fallout 3's buildup at the time, I think I prefer New Vegas' quicker kickoff. Actual character creation is handled by one Doc Mitchell, who is there when you wake up to tend to your wounds, customize your character's looks, and distribute skill points through word association and Rorshach tests. (.....) There are a few other additions as well -- perks are back, along with "traits," which are returning to the series after being absent in Fallout 3. They're special abilities that come with a price -- "Good Natured" will boost your social skills at the cost of some attack damage, and "Wild Wasteland" will create some "interesting" encounters, both good and bad. Traits are optional, but they seem like they could both add some variety to the game, and make for some excellent replay value. Radio stations are back, but I only heard Mr. New Vegas playing some swingin' tunes for the desert denizens.”
Crispy Gamer brings another QuakeCon preview:
Until Fallout 3, the Fallout game had always contained a certain amount of mature sexual content. Fallout had brothels and a quest where you had to talk down an angry john in order to save a girl’s life. Fallout 2 let players get married (gay, lesbian or straight), pimp out their spouses, and even become a porn star. Though in Fallout Tactics and Brotherhood of Steel these themes were more story based than interactive. While a bit risqué at times, the depiction of sexual content in Fallout games was never actually pornographic. Instead sex was treated the same way it is in the Fable games. Intimate interaction was initiated and then the screen would go black for a second or 2. With Fallout 3, the team at Bethesda decided to completely avoid those themes. To quote Emil Pagliarulo at the QuakeCon “Building Immersive Worlds and Stories” panel, regarding sexual content, they “didn’t want to do it…it would be goofy, cheesy and set the wrong tone.” However, sexual themes are a major part of the post apocalyptic genre and some classic movie titles like A boy and his dog center around them entirely. With that in mind, I asked Ms. Treadwell if Fallout: New Vegas would see the return of these mature themes to the Fallout series. Her response was that so far the folks at obsidian hadn’t shown off any of that content but to a certain extent, yes that sort of content would be present in New Vegas. While Fallout: New Vegas will have more mature content than Fallout 3, it won’t be quite as much as we saw in Fallout 2.
I was never a big fan of Fallout 3, and I feel that in many ways it failed to live up to it’s predecessors. However after getting my hands on Fallout: New Vegas I can’t help but feel optimistic about this game. What the folks over at Obsidian have produced has little in common with Fallout 3 aside from the software engine it uses. Fallout: New Vegas looks and feels like the sequel Fallout 2 deserved, and i can’t wait until it finally ships this October.”
Yet another preview from allaboutgames.co.uk:
Once you're done with finding out who you are, you want to find out who shot you, and so begins the quests. Things here are working pretty much like Fallout 3 with the game offering flexibility over which missions to take and when. I found myself spending most of my time in the desert, crossing from town to town, but despite the lack of Vegas, I still got to enjoy some colourful neon lights, some new enemies, and a guy taking shots at me from a rollercoaster. I also had experience of some of the new gangs who took a disliking to me very quickly; though I blame the dodgy beard for that. You will find yourself spending time to gain both good and bad reputations for the various gangs, tribes and alliances in the game, but in my playthough I decided the consequences of getting in trouble were fairly minimal.”