Monday, August 30, 2021

Tech: Wasteland 3

Due to the tastes of the "Fortnite"-crazed gaming public, there are very few turn-based RPGs being made nowadays, and almost none that support online co-op. InXile Entertainment's "Wasteland 3" is the exception that proves the rule.  The title only saw the light of day thanks to a $3 million crowdfunding campaign, the know-how of Brian Fargo and his ex-Interplay devs, and perhaps most importantly, the 2018 acquisition of the studio by Microsoft. Thankfully, all that firepower resulted in a really good game:

Like prior entries in the series, "Wasteland 3" tasks you with leading a band of Desert Rangers through a vast and mostly-hostile world. This time, you're stuck in frozen Colorado to get supplies for Ranger HQ back in Arizona.  An early ambush kills most of your team, and from there the game opens up with lots of branching choices. Do you ally with the local strongman to get the supplies you need? Plot to overthrow him? Or ignore all of that to pursue revenge for your fallen comrades?

It's refreshing to have a 2020 mid-budget game offer that kind of freedom - not the lazily-plotted "sandbox" of other open world titles, but multiple scripted events that affect both each other and your Rangers' reputation in the game. What's more, the full 35-hour main campaign can be played in online multiplayer, as my friend Ziggy and I did. In trade for that, I will gladly accept the unbalanced combat (which typically snowballs into either a rout of the enemy or your untimely murder), weird interface quirks, and the occasional bug or two.

Rating: 83/100 (add 10 to the rating if you're looking for a co-op RPG)


Post a Comment

<< Home