Launch Day Impressions: The Outer Worlds

When it comes to The Outer worlds, I would be doing it a disservice by comparing it to those titles it unabashedly takes influence from; Fallout, Skyrim, Dragon Age, Mass effect. Doing so would imply that The Outer Worlds is a lesser product than those, that the game can’t stand up on its own as a shining beacon of what an RPG can be rather than act as merely a patchwork of ideas ripped straight from the developer Obsidians previous titles. I have only spent a handful of hours with The Outer Worlds at this point in time, so I still have quite a while to go before I can offer any sort of comprehensive viewpoint on the game as a whole, however the time I have spent traversing through edge of the planet colonies, the people I’ve met in my time there, all of my limited experiences with the game so far have slowly started to paint a picture of what Obsidian’s vision for The Outer Worlds is.

            In my opening hours of the game, I was greeted by a Delusional corporate loyal merchant clerk whose inner character dynamic is humorously disturbing. Interacting with him leads you down a rabbit hole of a highly entertaining dialogue chain that had me enthralled through its entire run. And while the charm has left a lasting impression on me, this type of engaging and memorable encounter is not uncommon, just about every single conversation so far has been impossible to ignore their just so enthralling due to just how much your decisions feel like they have substantial consequence. It’s rare for me to ever truly feel like my decisions are impacting the way I play a game, Questlines in modern gaming are aggressively from point A to point B, without anything else other than the main quest objective being able to affect it at all. Yet here in The Outer Worlds, I very quickly found out that the things I do, the people I kill, the items I steal all have a big impact on how my character is viewed and what opportunities im given.

Very early on in the game, I came across an injured worker who pleaded with me to assist him. This was the very first test the game threw at me, this particular moment is designed to make you question yourself. What do I do? Who is this guy? What has he done? Who am I? What will I do? Having no weapon I felt violence was off the table, so maybe I could ignore him and just keep walking on my way, but for some reason, I decided to talk to him, this is where I first realized just how fleshed out and dynamic the dialogue system could be. I had a bevy of options, the most appealing being due to how I distributed my skill points. I had poured a good number of my initial points into the “Dialogue” tree, which very conveniently gave my character the ability to talk the guy into handing me his gun so I could go get help. After charming him out of his weapon I felt a rush of adrenaline, I was absolutely jacked up by the idea that in a modern-day game I was given the option to be who I want to be, do what I wanted to do, if I didn’t want to settle a dispute with violence, I could settle it with words. So in celebration, I immediately pulled the trigger unloading the contents of the gun into the skull of the guy who had previously been so hopeful that life might just turn around for him because of the kindness of a stranger. However, in a game that gives you so much liberty and freedom to truly be who you desire to be, I knew in that moment that my dreams of being a smooth-talking gun-slinging moral deficient bounty hunter were finally coming to pass. While I so far have attempted to live the high road when possible, that doesn’t mean I was entirely avoiding the gunfights. I’m going to be plainly honest, I don’t have much I can really say about the shooting, yet I can’t say it was anything incompetent. That’s not to say that the shooting here Is anything revolutionary, its mainly just serviceable, but I feel the main draw for people here is less in the gunfights and more for the other various ways the developers have designed for you to solve problems. While the gunplay didn’t impress me, everything around it did. From the world design to the enthralling Dialogue systems. I cannot wait to discover what else you can achieve in this game as I play through it further.

Yet there is no doubt in my mind that anyone who has been felt deprived of the classic Fallout style will instantly be hooked by The Outer Worlds, it absolutely exudes style and charm, that only heightens the beauty of the character interactions executed by the dialogue system, even after just around 8ish hours of playtime I can wholeheartedly say that if you were a fan of Fallout: New Vegas, or Mass Effect, there is no way you do not adore this game. That’s not to say that this game cannot stand on its own without those titles, however The Outer Worlds takes those styles and mixes them together to create something that is a true gem in a industry currently saturated in high quality releases. I cannot wait to see where my journey on Halycon takes me.