Many fans and critics declare Fallout: New Vega the purest 3D adaptation of the franchise’s original philosophy. Developed by Obsidian (founded by original members of the Fallout 2 team), New Vegas deeply embraced the realistic grey areas of tough decisions. Obsidian was hampered however, by Bethesda’s control and the limitations of the Fallout 3 engine. Developed in just 18 months, New Vegas was a productive experiment I’d like to see more of. Starting with another game as the base ingredient saves resources and allows another perspective to be enjoyed.
Eurogamer has been covering Obsidian and posted some great quotes about their development history.
Triple the races, triple the fun
“Originally we had this idea where the player would be able to choose between three races: human, ghoul and super mutant…” – Obsidian CEO Feargus Urquhart
But the engine held them back
“It really had to do with how all the weapons and armour worked. Trying to have them all work with ghouls and super mutants was just going to be – [Bethesda] felt like it was going to be a nightmare. It wasn’t like they said no but it was a very strongly worded, ‘We would really suggest that you not try to do that.'”
About New Vegas’ role in the franchise
“We knew from the start it was not going to be Fallout 4 – that was the internal team’s. It was meant to be not the sequel. It was meant to be an offshoot project. But we were actually worried about that, about people thinking of it as just a big expansion.”
About getting a chance to work on Fallout again
“I didn’t leave Black Isle because I wanted to make another Fallout. I love making Fallout. I was lead designer on Fallout 2. I’m not in any way instrumental in the creation of the SPECIAL system but I absolutely participated in the creation of it.”
On the setting
“Someone threw up New Reno as one of the crazy things we did and then we saw Vegas and, we just went with it. From there it was like the ’50s had the Rat Pack, then someone threw out the idea there was the scene in Goodfellas where you get taken out into the desert and whacked and thrown into a grave, and it it all kind of turned that way.”
“The first time we pitched it we pitched it as Fallout: Sin City. Very quickly it got changed to Fallout: Vegas and then became Fallout: New Vegas.”
If you’ve never played New Vegas, check out the first hour of play I did last year. If you felt Fallout 3/4 had a lot of potential but didn’t win you over, check a look and see if it’s worth your time.