Fallout: New Vegas came out 10 years ago on PC, Xbox 360 and PS3. Game was praised for its complex writing, unique atmosphere, Karma system, moral choices and ambiguity and its freedom. Once the first quest is completed, you are free to do whatever you wish (only 4 NPCs are invincible in the game) and go wherever you wish on the map.
There is tons of minor factions but also 4 major players in New Vegas that the player can side with, each with their own main quests and their own reputation system:
An expansionist federal presidential republic founded in New California. The largest known post-War country. Purportedly dedicates itself to the values of the old world: Democracy, liberty, the rule of law, all in order to make the wasteland a better place. It also protects ghouls and mutants.
However, the Republic faces many challenges, is criticized for its high taxes, suffers food shortages, is threatened by famine and is plagued by corruption and internal conflicts.
The current president, Aaron Kimball, is a “war hawk”.
"Four years ago, we held this dam. Four years ago, we carried the weight. Four years ago, we drew a line through the Mojave as clear as the Colorado River, a line that Caesar cannot cross. Today, you stand here with our brothers and sisters to hold that line.
Thank you. Thank you.
(Okay, let’s get the fuck out of here. What the hell are you waiting for – do you think I want to get shot? Let’s go.)
An imperialistic and extremely brutal dictatorship founded in 2247, inspired and partially based on the ancient Roman Empire and led by Caesar, self-proclaimed “Son of Mars”, egomaniacal and former citizen of the NCR.
Caesar’s ultimate goal is to conquer the New California Republic and merge its civilian culture and infrastructure with the military strength of the Legion, creating a new totalitarian empire, a “Pax Romana” which would prevent humanity from ever fracturing itself again.
Founder of RobCo Industries, multi-billionaire by the age of 30, megalomaniac (or ambitious). He mathematically predicted the atomic war and took steps to ensure that the Chinese missiles would miss his beloved Las Vegas and the surrounding areas. The Platinium Chip, the last piece of the defense network, was set to be delivered in the afternoon of October 23, 2077. The bombs fell the day before.
Biding his time, he entered the world stage again in 2274. Securitrons under his command emerged from Lucky 38 Hotel & Casino, in order to establish his rule over Vegas.
A hacked AI program originally programmed to work for Mr. House like all the other securitrons.
He planned the ambush on the Courrier and is part of Benny’s master plan to kill Mr. House, usurp control of New Vegas and expel both the New California Republic and Caesar’s Legion.
Designed to do exactly as he is told (hence Yes Man).
Unfortunately, the game was plagued with bugs, glitches, crashes and technical issues, had outdated graphics even for its day (it was one of the last games to use the Gamebryo engine) and was largely unfinished in some places.
I still hope that someday this game will get a proper remaster / remake with next-gen graphics and performance (the game looks so bad and outdated honestly) + Fallout 4’s gunplay, sprint and crafting + the cut content restored and the original vision that Obsidian had in mind.
Story and atmosphere were A+ while graphics and engine were F-.
I think that’s the best Fallout game ever (and one of the best games I’ve played) but I’m still bitter that so much content and so many interesting ideas had to be cut/dropped (KotOR 2 all again) because of both PS3/Xbox 360 technical limitations and Obsidian’s ambition clashing with time restraints (18 months):
- a lot of Caesar’s Legion content (Legion-controlled locations in Arizona, many quests…) that would have better explained their ultimate goal and motives.
- Legionary Alexus (he has the highest charisma of the entire Legion but in the final game he has no unique dialogue at all and is useless).
proper post-endgame content and changes after the battle of Hoover Dam (you can’t play it after beating the main story actually)
cut encounters with Benny
more companions (Ulysses as a Legion companion in the base game, Betsy the Brahmin)
- a friendly miniature Sentry Bot Toy that would follow the player
- expanded New Vegas Strip, a much larger and less empty Freeside without loading zones
a lot of content regarding Primm (Powder Gangers / NCR, reputation, a new sheriff…). There’s pretty much nothing to actually do in Primm.
becoming a Great Khan
potential Vault(s) (Vault 24)
reclaiming control of Helios One on behalf of the Brotherhood of Steel
weapons, characters (like Mr. House’s Marilyn Securitron)…
- radioactive tumbleweeds
‘The House Always Wins: Lockdown’ (escaping the Lucky 38 for misbehavior)
Gojira (=Godzilla), most powerful enemy in the game, though it was never intended to be in the game and created just for fun
lots of NPSs and dialogue lines, Fiend dialogues, VR Pods (potentially)…
unused Yes Man faces
- and many more things…
Victor, the Securitron you encounter in Goodsprings, is nothing if not suspicious. There’s something about his “aw shucks” cowboy persona that makes the hairs on your neck stand up. He seems overly-friendly, refuses to answer questions about his past, or tell you who he works for. He also follows you, startling you by popping up randomly on the road to New Vegas and forcing you into dialogues. You can’t even waste him: he just inhabits another Securitron. Everything about Victor screams that he has some sinister motivation that the game will eventually reveal.
Except it never does. After you reach New Vegas he more or less stops mattering. If you get rid of Mr.House, he simply goes offline and stands outside his shack forever. Cut content does reveal that he was meant to duel you after disposing of House (there’s a mod that restores this), but even that seems anti-climactic.
Freeside and Vegas
Camp McCarran / airport
Lucky 38 Control Room and Mr. House
Lonesome road / the Divide
Vegas (very early)
The game also had a very special and almost eerie / sinister atmosphere thanks to the soundtrack:
Fun fact (not really): Quarry Junction wasn’t the worse place of the game. There was a secret and creepy unmarked location east of the Colorado river (Deathclaw Promontory) that has about several dozens Deathclaws (about 36 I think), including multiple alpha and mothers, guarding an Enclave’s advanced power armor and a T-51b power armor.
Ghostly voices can be heard when standing near an exhumed grave at Goodsprings cemetery with the radio off.
And the best example imo why New Vegas has such a good writing and a unique sinister atmosphere: