Fallout 4 has been out for a while now. Since I reviewed it in November, we’ve continued to have adventures together; we’ve laughed, we’ve cried, I’ve asked why there must be Deathclaws and Fallout has responded by sending me, yes, more Deathclaws. It’s our little joke. But it’s going on four months now and we want to keep things fresh – the honeymoon period is over.
Thankfully Bethesda have revealed their DLC plans to keep me coming back for more. Fallout 4 has been the company’s most successful game ever so it’s really no wonder that they want to take this success and build on it now rather than later – like most things in Fallout, game success has a half life and they’ll want to make it as long as possible.
So, what are these DLC plans? What will they improve? How much will they cost? Will you get lost more? Here’s the low-down.
Automatron is the first release, due in March for £7.99. It involves robots. A lot of robots. A new villain called the Mechanist has unleashed his evil robots on the Commonwealth and it’s your job to hunt them down, harvest their parts and build your own robot companions. The robots will be moddable and you’ll have the ability to mix limbs, armour, abilities and weapons. You can even change their paint and choose their voices. My first move will no doubt be to try and replicate Bender from Futurama. It’ll be nice to see some new enemies populating the Commonwealth, and although I really didn’t need a feature that would make my ridiculous hoarding tendencies worse, I can’t wait to scavenge and build myself a little metal buddy.
Up next in April for £3.99, Wasteland Workshop is going to build on settlement features. I really liked the idea of settlements in Fallout 4 – it’s nice to feel like you have something akin to a home to go back to in a landscape as harsh and unfriendly as the Commonwealth. But it’d be hard to say that the settlement system was perfect; overly fiddly and definitely not for impatient players, it left me feeling as cold as my constructions looked.
Wasteland Workshop certainly doesn’t fix the construction problems the settlement system has, but it will provide more design options to make your three walls and precariously balanced roof feel like home with new lighting options, letter kits and, incredibly, taxidermy. Nothing says home sweet home like a wall-mounted molerat carcass. So lifelike!
A further feature this DLC will offer is the ability to build your own kind of Colosseum. Players will be able to design and set cage traps to capture enemies and then be able to tame them or have them face off in battle. It’s like if Pokemon got too real. NPC enemies fight each other all the time in open world games like Fallout, but the idea that I would be directly involved in making this happen makes me feel a little too ‘Emperor Nero’. That said, I love the idea that I could tame a Super Mutant and possibly have it accompany me around the Commonwealth. The wanderer, her robot and the Super Mutant. That’s a Cartoon Network ready idea if you ask me. Whether or not tamed enemies will be able to become companions hasn’t been made clear, but I’ve got my fingers crossed.
By far the biggest DLC, Far Harbor makes port in May for £19.99. Nick Valentine has proven to be one of the most popular companion options in Fallout 4 (it’s his snappy dress sense and dulcet tones) and Far Harbor is taking his involvement further. A new case comes into Nick’s detective agency which sends you to a whole new island location off the coast of Maine to search for a missing woman and a secret a colony of synths.
Far Harbor isn’t just a new location, it’s one of the largest add on landmasses Bethesda have ever created and if you’ve ever played any of their location DLCs, you’ll know that means this place is going to be huge. Bethesda have promised new settlements, new factions, new quests, new weapons, new armour, new creatures, new dungeons, and new choices. It sounds like you’re going to need new hands and new eyes by the time you get through it all.
All this DLC will be available to download separately at the costs listed above, but if you’d rather have it all it will come as part of the £24.99 season pass. That price will soon change though and Bethesda are giving fair warning. From March 1st, the cost of the season pass will go up to £39.99, which is a fairly big jump. This is no doubt due to the amount of DLC they’re planning to release across 2016, so if you’ve been thinking about purchasing a season pass but haven’t been able to decide if it’s worth it, we advise you get it cheap while you still can because all of the planned DLC will be available at no extra charge when you have it.
For anyone that can’t wait for these add-ons, Bethesda will be running closed betas and you can sign up for them now on the website when you’ve created an account. Not everyone will be selected to take part, but those that are will receive a code to download the full version of the content and won’t have to purchase it afterwards, so it might be worth throwing your name in just in case. Everyone loves a freebie.
But wait, there’s more!
Seriously, there is actually more. On top of paid DLC, Bethesda have announced that they’ll still be providing free updates to the game for everyone else. These free updates will involve optimisations of gameplay and quests as well as a complete overhaul of Survival Mode that will change how you play the game. Bethesda are also working on the Creation Kit which will allow players to create and play mods for free. Though the mod creation will be focused for PC players, the mods that are created will be playable on consoles. The new Survival Mode and Creation Kits are being tested now, so we can expect to see more details soon.
It’s nice to see that Bethesda will continue to offer free updates alongside paid DLC; the game is huge as is so any additions that don’t have to be purchased feel like a really positive extra.
I don’t know why I was ever worried I might be allowed to lose interest in Fallout 4. From what I can tell Bethesda have enough in store that I’ll be wandering the Commonwealth for the rest of 2016.