(This is part of my journey going playing through 2010’s Fallout New Vegas. You can follow the entire series on the Retro Gaming page.)
Continuing on with the tutorial section of Fallout New Vegas, I explore the starting town of Goodsprings. It’s a quaint little Western dive that is making its way in the post-apocalyptic world, and it even has a mascot — a roving robot named Victor. Who’s a cowboy. Because of course he is. Apparently, Victor is the one who saw the Caesars dump me into a shallow grave and rescued me, even though — according to the townspeople — he’s never done anything helpful in the past.
I have to say that the tutorial section is fairly well integrated into the game. Doesn’t really feel like you’re playing a tutorial, for the most part. Some easy quests, some light crafting, a bit of combat, all while I familiarize myself with the controls. It’s pretty familiar, coming from the other modern Fallout games, and I rejoice to have proper VATS working once more.
Another thing that the game does well at the onset is hitting you with the surrounding backstory from multiple angles. Various NPCs talk about what’s going on until I have a good sense of the larger situation — that the New California Republic has moved into the area to take the Hoover Dam, the evil slaver Caesars are pushing back, and New Vegas is a plum prize with its electricity and modern amenities.
There’s Vegas itself in the distance. I hope we’re not going there too soon; I don’t especially like the bigger cities in these post-apoc RPGs.
One thing that is hitting me hard about this game is how similar New Vegas and Fallen Earth are in feel. Both have that broken up desert southwestern setting, so I guess that makes sense, but in any case it makes me really glad to be exploring this game world.
With everything done in Goodsprings that I can see, I head down to the next major town and quest destination: Primm. It’s less cozy than where I came from, as the small village (which includes a couple of casinos and a broken-down rollercoaster) has been overrun by criminal elements and the NCR refuses to step in to help.
At least I’m starting to fill in the blanks as to my weird backstory. I am Courier Six, the last of a group of couriers sent out to deliver a package. I was the only one waylaid and left for dead, although a guy in Primm hints that there was something special about me that triggered this event. So to speak.
At least I get my first real dungeon crawl here. I’m not fully equipped for a heavy slog, but I have enough armor and weapons to make my way through. I find that with my large AP pool, it’s best to run up quick to a bad guy, trigger VATS, and then line up about six attacks in slow-motion.
VATS is what makes this a lot more enjoyable than it has a right to be. I’d hate for this to be a twitch-based shooter with murky rooms and hard-to-see mobs, but with this combat system, it’s a lot of fun to plan out attacks and then see how they unfold.