It’s been awhile since I’ve entered the wasteland. I burned through NukaWorld shortly after the DLC was released and ashamedly haven’t scorched any ghouls since. Still, I was right back at home when I strapped on the VIVE and found myself at the Red Rocket Truck Stop. I looked over and saw Dogmeat to my right, and nothing was more pleasing to a Fallout Fangirl than to pull up my left arm and see an enormous Pip Boy in my face.
The Fallout 4 VR demo allows you to play through the fight at Concord that introduces you to the Minutemen. Standard controls use click-jump movement which I was hesitant about at first, but decided to give a go. Before I made it to the outskirts of Concord I encountered a group of ghouls, and true to Fallout fashion they seemed to come out of nowhere. At this point I had already adjusted to click-jump movement and found myself effortlessly and instantly atop a car to deal with my foes. The car seemed to shake as I blasted ghouls with my laser rifle and I’m pretty sure I screamed a bit. It was definitely more terrifying than my previous experience with the irradiated vermin and I’m not sure my little heart is ready to face a glowing deathclaw in VR just yet.
I was especially impressed with the combat control accuracy. While I’ve played around with mid-range combat on the VIVE before, I found my shots connecting with distant Bloodbugs that were a challenge on my PC playthrough. As I continued towards Concord there was a power armour suit waiting for me. I heard the fight and began to blast some raiders.
I am a Fallout pusher. I absolutely love the world and want everyone to love it too, so I had to force myself to look for negative aspects of my experience. Yes, I had a little trouble entering my power armour suit. While I enjoyed the simplicity of click-jump movement for the majority of the demo, it was a little annoying to position myself exactly next to the suit and I could see where tight spaces might be a problem. Thankfully my attendant told me I could easily switch my preference to navigate with the left hand control. Whatever you choose, I honestly think overall accuracy is improved- though I’ll be interested to see if that continues with a sniper rifle. I could foresee confusion with various hotkeys. Also, I didn’t pull up my Pip Boy in combat to see if it would let me pause the fight to heal as easily as my desktop. What I did experience was so well done I’m not very concerned, other than how building your settlements is going to work out (but let’s be honest, that’s frustrating no matter how you go about it).
To anyone who loves the Fallout franchise, playing in VR is a dream come true. At its release on December 12, 2017, Fallout 4 VR will be exclusive to the HTC Vive. Still, Bethesda has already hinted via Twitter that other platforms may be coming. I believe the Vive is properly equipped to handle the mechanics of the game and my experience at QuakeCon has done nothing but build excitement. Check out the official E3 trailer and mark your calendar!