Obsidian’s The Outer Worlds is set to debut on the Epic Games Store, PS4, and Xbox One this fall. It’s not a game I’m remotely excited about, but people hanging around the OAG community seem to have an eye on it, mostly due to its similitude with Borderlands and Fallout. For those gamers, there have been some recent preview footage made available – more than an hour’s worth to be exact – to give you an idea of what the game will be like and what you can expect from the upcoming title.
YouTuber MrMattyPlays has several videos up on The Outer Worlds, including how the leveling system works, how the dialogue trees work, how the questing works, and whether or not the gunplay is coal or gold. You can check out his truncated thoughts in the 15 minute video below.
So there are a couple of things to cover but the first thing I want to talk about is the gunplay. It seems like a lot of games are degenerating when it comes to solid gunplay. The weapons either look stupid or uninteresting, or they’re realistic looking but with stat-based mechanics and reloading that takes place faster than Zeus’ cheeks can turn rosy red after a dribbling fart of lightning falls out of his anus and onto an unsuspecting Athens below.
I can actually say that based on what’s showcased in the 15 minute video and the longer hour’s worth of footage, the guns look good, the handle well, and the reloading looks smooth. Also, the weapons appear to do appropriate enough damage with satisfying results. It’s not perfect but it looks more compelling than what we’ve seen of Borderlands 3… in my opinion.
Melee combat, however, is one of the game’s weak points. It’s pointed out that you hit, and hit, and hit on enemies and they don’t really react to the hacking and slashing being down to their mushy 3D bodies. A shame, really, but anyone who plays first-person games often know that melee combat is always a weak point in those titles. It’s either one-and-done attacks like the stealth kills in Dishonored, which look okay, or you’re just wailing on enemies and grabbing at them with your hands like Joe Biden grabbing on young girls during a photo op at the Knoxville Catholic High School.
Anyway, there’s still room to include better hit-reactions to the melee weapons and maybe better sound and visual feedback from the effects front before the game releases. Even still, you can get a look at how the combat works with the hour long gameplay preview below.
As you can see, the guns look and behave a lot more impactful and a lot more fluid than how they handle in Fallout 4, which oftentimes has clunky or spastic looking shootouts.
One other thing that MrMattyPlays brings out is that the game isn’t about just taking one from one shooting range to the next. You’ll go on quests, do some shooting, and talk to NPCs, explore an area, or scavenge for stuff. As you complete quests and build (or destroy) relationships, you gain factional reputation points, not unlike in the Elder Scrolls. However, MrMattyPlays compares it to the light and dark meter that shapes your character in Knights of the Old Republic.
Nearly every location has something useful there so it’s not like it’s just dead-ends and glossy rocks. Some of these quests will allow you to upgrade your character, or they can be used to follow questlines for your NPC companions.
Now one of his worries was that one of his companions didn’t interact or speak much, and he feared that maybe NPC companions stop talking altogether once you complete their questline, which would be a real shame for people who like chatty comrades.
Again, since this was an early build, we don’t know if Obsidian might fix this feature later on.
Companions can also be customized with new armor and weapons that you can unlock or earn throughout play. Since the game is in first-person the player-character visual customization is kept to a bare minimum, and rightfully so. If you can’t see your character in the game it doesn’t make sense making a bunch of player-character models that you won’t be able to see unless you’re equipping stuff. It’s pointless.
At the same time it also seems weird that the companions would the ones with all the customization options, since you won’t be playing your companions.
Aside from that the game looks like a blended mix of Fallout 4 meets Borderlands. If it seems like a repetitive notion it’s because that’s exactly what The Outer Worlds looks and plays like.
Apart from the silent towns, which I’m sure Obsidian will fix, and a couple of other bugged menus, there weren’t many drawbacks mentioned in the preview.
I still have a strong feeling that this is one of those “diversity” ridden games due to the companions they’ve showcased so far and just some of the comments the developers have made about the story and world-building – none of it sits well with me. Even still, if you’re interested in this game you can look for it to launch on October 25th, 2019 later this fall.
(Thanks for the news tip GuyverOne)