Fallout 4: Nuka-World – PS4
Developer: Bethesda Game Studios
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Release Date (NA): August 29th, 2016
Genre: Action RPG
Nerd Rating: 8.5 out of 10
This review is going to cover the contents of Fallout 4’s sixth and final DLC pack, Nuka-World. This isn’t an overview of the base game, nor the Season Pass. For those interested in the other DLC packs, be sure to check out their individual reviews below.
At the beginning of last year I covered Fallout 4 for the PlayStation 4 for Nerd Bacon, since then six DLC packs have been released for the game so I figured it’d only be right if I returned back to give the fine folks here my thoughts on each of them. Note though, that although the screenshots I’ve used for many of the DLC packs come from a modded saved game, I did in-fact play though each DLC pack at least once without mods (as trophies are disabled for modded saved games) and I’ll be judging them on that.
Not that it really matters though, because you can’t get the Unofficial Fallout 4 Patch for the PlayStation 4 version of Fallout 4 anyway, since Sony’s piracy paranoia has turned the sweet prospect of mods on consoles into little more than legal game cheats. So if anything, you’ll want to stay away from this lesser version.
Nuka-World is the sixth and final DLC pack released for Fallout 4, and in my humble opinion, one of the only ones worth caring about. In-fact, I loved Nuka-World so much that I played it over…a dozen times so far. Some may compare it to Fallout 3’s second DLC pack-which I also loved (but not as much as Point Lookout)-The Pitt, similar to me calling Far Harbor Fallout 4’s Point Lookout 2: Electric Boogaloo. However, this isn’t The Pitt 2: Electric Boogaloo, no…it’s more like The Pitt 2: The Dark Knight.
As typical with Fallout DLC, our adventures in this DLC pack begin with an old radio broadcast from the assumed to be abandoned Nuka-Cola Theme Park from West of the Commonwealth. When the player reaches the Nuka-World Transit Station he or she finds a patrol of Gunners along with an “injured” man named Harvey inside complaining about how he was shot trying to escape with his family from the Raiders-blah blah blah. It’s obvious he’s bullshitting the player but whatever…
The Sole Survivor, while riding in on the Nuka Express receives an ominous message, or a follow-up if you killed Harvey, from someone named Porter Gage who lets you know that you’ve been led into a death trap but offers a sweet reward if you can kill his current boss, the leader of the Nuka-World, Overboss Coulter. What you don’t know however, as you stroll through the easy-as-hell-at-level-90 Gauntlet, is that by killing Coulter, the player becomes the newest Overboss-inheriting the on-going Raider drama along with it.
As it turns out Coulter and trusty-turned-backstabbing sidekick Porter Gage have been planning to take control of the entirety of Nuka-World to turn it into a Raider stronghold, however Coulter fucked around and the leaders of the three Raider gangs under his control got fed up with waiting and conspired to remove him. Now as the new Overboss, the player is tasked with finishing Gage’s plan by clearing the five parks: Galatic Zone, Dry Rock Gulch, Safari Adventure, Kiddie Kingdom, and the Nuka-Cola Bottling Plant, while also fairly dividing up the areas between the three Raider gangs; the Disciples, the Operators, and the Pack.
Or you can go the Weenie route and kill all of the Raiders in Nuka-World, giving the park back to a small group of enslaved asshole merchants, and missing out on some of the best writing, perks, character development, and romance of Fallout 4…but well, that’s your choice.
The majority of the main quest line, should you not go the Weenie route, is spent clearing the aforementioned parks by completing each park-specific quest. For example, Dry Rock Gulch’s main quest can’t be completed without receiving the key to Mad Mulligan’s Mine, which requires the player to either help the robotic sheriff and townsfolks, or by passing Robotics Expert speech checks. Galactic Zone, on the other hand, requires the player to find a specified number of Power Cores hidden around the amusement park (and around Nuka-World) to hack into the park’s mainframe and disable the army of frenzied robots out to kill you. All of the park quests are also a pretty decent length and are all unique enough that it doesn’t feel like as much of a chore.
Along with completing the parks, the player must also assign one of the three raider gangs to control it, providing the player with some loot (dependent on the gang) and a bit of brownie points to ensure said gang doesn’t turn on the player. In addition to that, the player will also be required to take control of at least three Commonwealth settlements either by force, or by convincing the settlers to leave (even ones the player is in charge of). I’d advise the player to disable any turrets and traps and move settlers when taking a previously owned settlement as an outpost, much less trouble that way. These raider outposts, like the parks must also be divided among the three raider gangs, but beyond the raider presence and inability to connect trade-lines, operate like any other settlement. It’s also worth noting that it isn’t possible to equally distribute everything between your gangs, so it’s worth it to just hash out everything to your two preferred gangs and leave out the last one completely.
Beyond the power struggle in Nuka-World USA, the Nuka-World DLC has plenty of neat smaller settlements to check out, including a haunted house which seems to be based on the Winchester Mystery Mansion and the story of Lizzie Borden; a tribute to Reddit user NoohjXLVII’s brother, and some smaller settlements with strange Scientology-like people, and at least one Dark Souls reference. There’s also some collectibles in the form of new Nuka-Cola recipes (that sometimes don’t appear where they’re supposed to…) and tickets/tokens for Nuka-World USA’s arcade, which can be accessed regardless of the player’s choice in route.
Like Far Harbor before it, Nuka-World introduces a new companion to complete DLC pack with-Coulter’s former trusty-turned-backstabbing companion Porter Gage. Luckily, he’s actually loyal to the Sole Survivor, as long as the player doesn’t decide to go the Weenie route and “liberate” Nuka-World. In addition to conditional unwavering loyalty, he also doubles as a romance option and merchant (provided you’re in Nuka-World). Although at first I didn’t believe it, Gage is total bae material, with some of the best lines of the DLC pack just from his approval conversations. And, unlike Longfellow, his character development wasn’t wasted trying to make him an expy of Jericho or a generic raider, but a complex character.
However, like every Bethesda Softworks product Nuka-World also has its share of glitches, such as Nuka-Cola recipe books sometimes never appearing, the game crashing every time I exited the Operator’s headquarters, and Gage disappearing or teleporting around while stuck in the downed position. I’ve come to expect nothing better from Bethesda, but I at least could generally finish the main quest-line without encountering any game-breaking bugs like certain other titles…
In the end, Nuka-World a real change of pace from the main game’s angst-filled story of lost children and body doubles that evolved into more angst when Far Harbor arrived. Instead, Nuka-World was simply funny; funny quests, funny dialogue, funny characters, etc. The storyline may have not been an edgy sci-fi Pulitzer’s prize winner, but I had enough fun in Nuka-World to warrant the absurdly high price of Fallout 4‘s Season Pass.
Looking for my thoughts on the rest of Fallout 4’s content? Check out the following:
- Fallout 4 – PS4
- Fallout 4: Automatron – PS4
- Fallout 4: Wasteland Workshop – PS4
- Fallout 4: Far Harbor – PS4
- Fallout 4: Contraptions Workshop – PS4
- Fallout 4: Vault-Tec Workshop – PS4
- Fallout 4: Nuka-World – PS4
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