The Outer Worlds, Obsidian Entertainment’s own Fallout in Space?

Robby Tight
Read Time4 Minutes, 16 Seconds

The Outer Worlds is an upcoming role-playing video game developed by Obsidian Entertainment and published by Private Division. The game will be released for PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows on October 25, 2019, with a Nintendo Switch version to be released later.  Obsidian Entertainment is best known for games such as Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic 2: The Sith Lords and Neverwinter Nights 2 as well as Fallout: New Vegas. 

Announced last December, The Outer Worlds is a role-playing video game featuring a first-person perspective. In the early stages of the game, the player can create their own character and unlock a ship, which acts as the game’s central hub space. Though the player cannot control their ship, it serves as a fast travel point to access different areas in the game and the player’s inventory.

The player will have the freedom to develop and customize their very own character in whichever way they would like. The Outer Worlds features a selection of six skills including Charm, Intelligence, Dexterity, Strength, Perception, and Temperament. One example of how these skill choices affect your character comes from Boyarsky, who told IGN that if your intelligence is low enough, your character will have the option to choose “dumb” dialogue responses. There will also be a host of perks on offer to enhance certain aspects of your character’s skill set. A lot of these skill sets and choices seem to take some influence from Fallout, which Obsidian did help make New Vegas so you can’t really blame them. 

An interesting mechanic that will be in the game is something called the “Flaw System.” The Flaw system offers you a negative trait that will debuff you as a result of a certain in-game experience. So if you were to take a large amount of damage from a particular enemy, for example, you could develop a phobia of that foe. The flaw will be presented to you after a particular event, and if you choose to take it, you’ll also be given an additional perk to make up for it. But that debuff will stay with you for the rest of the game, so really you have to weigh up if an extra perk is worth the flaw.

The player can encounter and recruit NPCs as companions who have their own personal missions and stories. When accompanying the player, the companions act as an aid in combat. Each companion has its own individual skills and special attacks, and it can also develop its own skill specialization. When exploring, the player can bring up to two companions alongside them, while the rest stay on the ship. This companion system sounds a lot like the Pawn system from Dragon’s Dogma which was a huge success in that game, so if it is anything like that I am sure it’ll be great in The Outer Worlds. The player can make numerous dialogue decisions, which can influence the game’s branching story. They can also respond to NPCs in various ways, such as acting heroically, maniacally, or moronically.

The game is set in an alternate future that diverged in 1901 when U.S. President William McKinley is not assassinated by Leon Czolgosz at the Pan-American Exposition. As a result, Theodore Roosevelt never succeeded him, allowing large business trusts to dominate society well into the future, where megacorporations have begun colonizing and terraforming alien planets. Originally bound for the furthest reaches of the galaxy, a colony ship’s faster-than-light travel goes astray, leaving it abandoned at the edge of colony space. The player character awakens on board from cryosleep only to find that most of the passengers are still in hibernation and begin a journey to a nearby colony to investigate the true nature of the corporations. The game features several factions and a branching story that reacts to the player’s choices.

During combat situations, the player can use various weapon types such as melee and firearms, which have three ammo types: light, medium, and heavy. These weapons can be customized to add elemental damage. The player can use stealth or social skills (persuasion) to avoid combat altogether. As the player progresses, they gain experience points, which the player and their companions can use to level up and unlock new skills. The player can develop their technical skills, which are further divided into three categories: Science, Medical, and Engineering. For instance, the player can use a shrink ray to shrink down an enemy. The player is able to invest points into these skills, which will unlock new perks that enhance combat efficiency. The player can also enter a “Tactical Time Dilation” state, which slows down time and reveals opponents’ health statistics, which grants the player tactical advantages, much like the VATS system in Fallout. As the player leads their companions, they improve their companions’ combat strength and resilience.

Players can expect to take to the stars on October 25th for the suggested retail price of $59.99 for PlayStation 4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and Computers. For more updates as the game rolls out, be sure to follow us here at CriticalStrike and follow Obsidian Entertainment on twitter for more.

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