Well this arrived on Saturday and I’ve been playing it every day since, first day was a bit annoying as I battled with some of the bugs primarily a sound bug that would cause major sound lag, voice overs playing 10 seconds after the conversation text appeared or gun shots and ambient noise being completely none existent.

I tried various community fixes such as raising the priority of the game in task manager which at first appeared to fix it but then I suffered terrible keyboard lag leading to me running past places I wanted to stop and running onwards long after I needed to change direction because my system resources were being diverted away from basic peripherals so I couldn’t keep playing like that. Eventually I discovered that playing in a window seemed to solve the sound problem and then all was well.

Once my initial frustration was over I started exploring and at first glance it feels a lot like Fallout 3, which isn’t a bad thing considering how good that was but as you play through the game you start to see subtle changes and improvements. I chose to play on “hardcore” mode which meant I also had to remember to eat, drink and sleep aswell as only being allowed to heal over time rather than instantly so it added some new challenges and richness to the world.

It’s not a huge inconvenience and seems to be something you don’t have to worry about every moment but it comes up enough to remind you to keep looking for new food, water and rethink how much ammo you need to carry since it also weighs something as opposed to normal mode.

Overall so far I’m really enjoying Fallout: New Vegas, its familiar and new all at the same time and while there are some bugs which might cause you problems, if you enjoyed Fallout 3 or even if you think the original Fallout games were better, New Vegas definitely seems to blend the two styles together into a much more engaging experience.

Obsidian seem to have captured the essence of the original Fallout games while maintaining much of the Fallout 3 goodness combing just the right amount of adult content and humour to the dark uncivilised world around you, there are many times when Obsidians writing outshines that of Fallout 3 and this definitely is a good thing.

Further to the improvements in New Vegas you will find your skill choices more meaningful as they have reduced perks to one every other level which makes them more important and stops you ending up with almost all of them by the time you hit the level cap of 30.

I also find myself focusing on only 5-6 skills overall giving more scope for new games to create alternate characters that focus on alternate skill sets. It appears all stats and skills play a bigger role in conversation options this time too, allowing you more variety of advancing or solving quests.

I’m only about a 3rd of the way through the game I think…assuming I will hit the level cap when I finish so theres still plenty to do and explore but If you have played Fallout games in the past you should definitely pick this up despite it looking like Fallout 3 it is superior in many ways and a great rpg!

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