Tobold's Blog
Saturday, November 02, 2019
Walking Simulator

I finished The Outer Worlds. There is a degree of satisfaction in getting through a game with a somewhat depressing setting, and trying to achieve a "happy end", as far as that is possible. And the fact that I "rented" the game for €1 via the Xbox Game Pass for PC, instead of paying €60 to "own" it in a more permanent fashion, somehow encouraged me to play through the game to the end.

Having said that, through the whole game I never really clicked with the gameplay experience. As as shooter, The Outer Worlds isn't working all that great. In the last part, which is the only hard part if you play on "normal", many of my favorite weapons simply didn't deal enough damage per shot, and were thus ineffective against the armor of the enemies. I ended up sneaking through that last dungeon with a sniper rifle and using headshots to take enemies out. The exploration part of the game is marred by the fiddly business of picking up thousands of trash items as loot. And the puzzles are of the extremely simple variety, like hacking a terminal to unseal a door.

So in the end I felt as if I was playing a walking simulator, a game in which only the story is important, and the gameplay isn't. Not really my favorite genre. While I did like the dialogues, and the story is okay, The Outer Worlds for me compares unfavorably to a game like Fire Emblem: Three Houses, which offers the same good dialogues and story, but enhances the experience by tactical gameplay.

Yeah the Outer Worlds is such an odd case for me because it feels like a game from 2010 was released in 2019. I like the game for the same reasons I liked Fallout New Vegas, but man do I hope they improve upon the genre in their next release.

Like I said in your last post about the game, Western RPGs are in a sad state. There really hasn't been any major innovation in the genre in years. It's getting tiresome when every game that comes out is just Skyrim or Fallout but with a different coat of paint on it.

I have 0 excitement for the next Dragon Age due to the shape Bioware is in and I never got into Witcher 3 which many people love. I'm hoping Cyberpunk offers something new to the genre but that still a whiles away.
Having read your earlier comments about the lack of challenge in the Outer World I started the game on a harder difficulty setting. I hit the issue you talked about much earlier and my default weapons were simply useless against most enemies so I pretty much already defaulted to a sniper rifle for headshots with shotgun for backup in case something gets close. It feels like a pretty cheesy way to play but it seems to be necessary.
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