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Fallout: New Vegas 5-Years Later Review

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Here we have another review from the Fallout franchise following the release of the much anticipated Fallout 4. Fallout: New Vegas was released in 2010 and while it uses the same engine as Fallout 3, it is not a direct sequel to the earlier title. Unfortunately, because of the time it took me to complete this review I will not be able to visit the original Fallout games ahead of the Fallout 4 release. (Real-life crept in and kept me busy with other things.)

Like other titles in the franchise, New Vegas is set in a post-apocalyptic world, and as the name suggests, you will be primarily exploring Nevada, with some trips to neighboring states. The playable character is a Courier who was supposed to deliver a special chip to the Lucky 38 Casino, but was intercepted and shot in the head by Benny. Despite having a bullet in your brain and being buried in a shallow grave, you were alive enough to be rescued and nursed back to health by Doc Mitchell of Goodsprings. At this point you start on your quest to retrieve the Chip and discover its purpose, which eventually leads to you shaping the larger future of the region.

Because I had purchased the Ultimate Edition of the game some time ago, I have all of the DLC for New Vegas, from the various content packs to the campaign content of Dead Money, Honest Hearts, Old World Blues, and Lonesome Road. Instead of what I did with the Fallout 3 review, I waited to play the campaign DLC until I had completed the base game and I also recorded play times for each.

As with the Fallout 3 review, I installed some mods partway through the game. The mods only affect the graphics of the game and do not directly impact the gameplay, which is the one restriction I had for the Fallout 3 review. If I review more modded games in the future, I will most likely keep this restriction.

As has been covered in other reviews, I have been using OBS or Open Broadcaster Software for video capture and FFmpeg for editing. This is actually the fourth review using this software, and with it I made an important change to the recording profile. Previously I had OBS set to record at 50 MBps, matching the option I had in ShadowPlay. It appears that OBS has difficulties working with such a high bit-rate, resulting in stuttering in some of the videos. For this and future reviews I lowered it to 30 MBps, solving the stuttering problem. (I have found it necessary to record at these rather insane bit-rates to ensure the quality of the original videos, as they cannot be intelligently compressed at the time of recording. Fortunately FFmpeg does a good job of re-encoding the videos at significantly lower bit-rates, without sacrificing quality.)

New Vegas has earned itself an M rating from the ESRB for blood and gore, intense violence, sexual content, strong language, and the use of drugs. As the media in this review contains some of that content, if that content would be inappropriate for you, chances are this review is as well.

Now that all of that has been addressed, time to see if it is worth visiting New Vegas or if this post-apocalyptic American Southwest is best left on its own.

  1. Fallout: New Vegas Review - Introduction
  2. Fallout: New Vegas Review - Graphics
  3. Fallout: New Vegas Review - Story
  4. Fallout: New Vegas Review - Gameplay
  5. Fallout: New Vegas Review - Downloadable Content
  6. Fallout: New Vegas Review - Additional Gameplay Media
  7. Fallout: New Vegas Review - Conclusion
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