Fallout 4 is one of the biggest PC game releases of the year.
Also available for Xbox One and PS4, Fallout 4 has been attracting mostly positive reviews since it was released (although the version with the best graphics and greatest customizability will always be the PC version).
Trying to decide whether or not to spend $60 on Fallout 4? Here’s a review roundup to give you an idea of what critics smarter than me across the internet are saying about this fall’s biggest RPG release.
Metacritic is a review aggregator that tracks movies, games, TV shows, music, and other media. It doesn’t use an overly complicated aggregation method: it just takes the review scores from all verified reviews, then averages those scores onto a scale of 100.
Metacritic, so far, has awarded Fallout 4 a score of 87 based on reviews by 19 critics. That indicates “generally favorable reviews”. Of the 19 game reviews, 18 were deemed to be positive while 1 was judged as “mixed”.
Oddly enough, Metacritic’s users don’t have the same positive attitude about the game. Just kidding, that’s not odd, because Metacritic’s user reviews are notoriously awful. These reviewers have either awarded Fallout 4 positive reviews (typically a “10”) or negative reviews (typically a “0”), resulting in an aggregate user review score right in the middle, for 4.7.
If you’ve ever wanted to see what nitpicky things people complain about when giving a soapbox on the internet, check out this list of the Metacritic user reviews. Then, keep reading this article to see what real reviewers have to say about this game.
IGN’s highly-anticipated Fallout 4 review was written by long-time PC gaming enthusiast and former PC Gamer staffer Dan Stapleton.
Stapleton and the IGN editors awarded Fallout 4 a score of 9.5/10, which is the highest score granted by any major media outlet thus far.
Stapleton praised Fallout for its outstanding world, excellent crafting system, and interesting story. His only major complain was bugs:
“The world, exploration, crafting, atmosphere, and story of Fallout 4 are all key parts of this hugely successful sandbox role-playing game. Great new reasons to obsessively gather and hoard relics of happier times, strong companions, and sympathetic villains driving tough decisions make it an adventure I’ll definitely replay and revisit. Even the technical shakiness that crops up here and there can’t even begin to slow down its momentum.”
GameSpot awarded Fallout 4 a 9/10 “Superb” rating, praising its dense world, hybrid combat system, and huge number of quests and rewards. The reviewer, Peter Brown, was also intrigued by the thought-provoking narrative, which forces you to confront some big questions about yourself – especially towards the end of the game.
On the other hand, Brown disliked the companion management system, the lackluster inventory management, the poor world map, and the less-than-stellar graphics. Like virtually every review listed here, Gamespot also complained about bugs.
“In the grand scheme of things, Fallout 4’s minor issues pale in comparison to its successes. When you put the controller down, you think about the friend you betrayed to benefit another, the shifting tide of an incredible battle, or the moment you opened a drawer and found someone’s discarded effects, making you wonder how they felt before the bombs fell. In moments like these, Fallout 4 can be an intoxicating experience.”
PC Gamer moderately shocked the world by giving Fallout 4 a score of 88/100. That’s an excellent score for any game – but PC Gamer has always been favorable towards Bethesda games (it gave Skyrim 94/100 and Fallout 3 91/100).
Thus, some people are taking the 88/100 score as a “disappointment”.
The game was reviewed by longtime PC gamer Phil Savage, who called Fallout 4 “a loving production” that was “filled with care and attention to detail”.
Nevertheless, Savage complained that he was “more conscious than ever of the flaws of the engine”. Although he didn’t experience as many bugs as other reviewers seemed to have experienced, he did report a lot of quirks:
“AI NPCs, for example, like to run off at inopportune moments in some faraway threat that they’ve decided to deal with. In one instance, a pair did this during a forced scripted sequence—leaving me stranded and unable to move. With so many systems working to create interesting, emergent experiences, sometimes things break down.”
Bugs didn’t seem to be as big an issue for Savage as they were for other reviewers. Ultimately, PC Gamer’s main complaint with Fallout 4 seems to be that it was the same gameplay we’ve been playing in Bethesda games for nearly a decade.