LAG – Fallout: New Vegas – Final Thoughts

September 27th, 2012 | Posted by Emmett in Games & Gaming
I finished out New Vegas a couple days ago, and looking back, I have mixed feelings about the ending. It may be worth nothing (for the benefit of my one reader) that the rest of this post contains spoilers, so if you don't want to know what happens in the game but really want to know how I felt about it, we can talk about it this weekend. I like to start by saying that I really did enjoy the game. The observations I made in earlier posts held up surprisingly well, even after 60+ hours of play time. The hardcore mode was a good way to play though the game. Although it was a little frustrating at times, the extra elements added a bit of practicality that kept you from getting too lazy. The faction system was kinda cool, but it didn't add a whole lot to the game's experience. It essentially had you choose a camp, and you could get the people in that camp to like you and eventually the ones in the other camp wouldn't like you. I might be interesting to try and play it so everyone liked you, or play it so everyone hated you (I guess that would be the Yes Man route). I was also surprised by the number of companions you could have. I figured you'd get presented with a few at the beginning of the game, but new people kept randomly showing up. There's an achievement for recruiting all followers, but I didn't get it so I'm assuming there are even more of them out there. I didn't completely exhaust the game, there's still DLC I didn't get into and I haven't explored the whole map yet, but after completing the quests left in my journal, I was ready to move on to the end. I went the pro-NCR route, which is what I saw as the good-guy path. I have a hard time playing the bad guy in games unless that's your only option, and RPGs usually give you an option. I'd need a lot of extra hands to count the number of KOTOR and KOTOR II playthroughs I've done, and I didn't do more than one dark jedi playthough with each. I guess it's just not my style. Besides I didn't want to kill everyone in the Brotherhood of Steele, and Mr. House wasn't giving me that option. The ending itself seemed a little abrupt, and not super conclusive. Starting it, I thought clearing out Caesar's forces from the damn and their staging camp would be a kind of first step toward an invasion of the main legion camp with the help of Mr. House's robots. Instead, you just kill Caesar's lieutenant and his support, walk to the gate, and boom (literally) you're done. You have a few lines of dialogue with the general and then the game ends. You don't even get to continue playing post-dam-battle, you have to load a save that's before the final sequence. That was weird to me, because - again - the final battle doesn't really wrap anything up. Maybe they figured they would have to reflect the shift in power and consequences in the environment afterward, but it's not like that's going to happen right away; Caesar's still in his camp and pissed off, the robots maintain the strip, outlying pockets of remaining groups still exist where you haven't killed them, nothing really changes. That was really my only problem with the game; a lot of good gameplay building up to a kind of lack-luster ending. Still, I will likely return to my pre-finale save game when I'm feeling like playing another RPG. I know there's still a lot I could do in that world, and it would be interesting to see if taking some bigger steps toward the ending I wanted on my own has any effect on what happens after the end. It would be pretty impressive if it did.

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