Fallout 4: Vault-Tec Workshop – PS4
Developer: Bethesda Game Studios
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Release Date (NA): July 26th, 2016
Genre: Action RPG
Nerd Rating: 6 out of 10
This review is going to cover the contents of Fallout 4’s fifth DLC pack, Vault-Tec Workshop. 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 this 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 anti-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.
Vault-Tec Workshop is the fifth DLC pack released for Fallout 4 and the final Workshop DLC. Although it was leaked around last year’s E3 with Contraptions Workshop and Nuka-World, it wouldn’t be released until last July. If you’ve read my thoughts on the previous two Workshop DLCs, Wasteland Workshop and Contraptions Workshop, this may surprise you…but I don’t actually hate Vault-Tec Workshop.
Unlike the previous two Workshop DLC packs which were only items that could be built the moment the DLC was installed and enabled, Vault-Tec Workshop actually makes an effort to deliver content to make it worth the $4.99 spent on it. This is in the form of a multi-part quest-line which includes newly voiced NPCs and a huge new dungeon-like area to explore, welcome to Vault 88.
The quest-line for Vault-Tec Workshop begins in a manner similar to Automatron; the player receives an emergency broadcast from Vault 88, an area added near the Murkwater Contruction Site and Quincy Quarries. When the player arrives, they find the exterior overrun by raiders intent on breaking into Vault 88 to plunder its supplies. Once dealt with however, the player can open up the Vault with their pipboy and meet the Vault’s ghoulified Overseer, Barstow, who requests their assistance with running a series of experiments on a population of new Vault residents.
You can choose to kill Overseer Barstow, or even ignore the quest-line completely and just use Vault 88 as a new settlement instead, but I don’t recommend it. The Vault-Tec Workshop quest-line is actually pretty funny, and even allows players to choose how they ultimately wish to proceed with experiments, such as using a vision test to test the effectiveness of propaganda vs bettering their Vault residents’ vision. It isn’t a perfect recreation of Fallout Shelter, as some may have been expecting from the DLC pack’s trailer, but it’s better than just being handed random items and told to build a Vault.
Vault 88 itself is pretty special too. Not only is the main area, required to clear out for the DLC’s quest-line, huge, but there’s also an extra quest in which the player can increase the settlement’s size by about four times, by activating several other Workshops by finding their control-boards. If you aren’t huge on the building aspect of Fallout 4, but love dungeon delving and combat, you’ll get a kick out of fighting through the many tunnels of Vault 88 with its large variety of enemies, including Mole rats, Deathclaws, Mirelurks (and at least one Queen), feral ghouls, radscorpions, and more. At the end of at least two areas you can also find exits to the Commonwealth, one at the University Point Pharmacy and the other by Milton General Hospital, both of which are a pretty decent distance away, so you know Vault 88 covers quite a bit of ground.
The items added through the Vault-Tec Workshop aren’t as spectacular though, just your standard fair Vault structures, rooms, and decor that existed in the vanilla game. The only real unique bits here are the items the player is required to build as part of their experiments with Overseer Barstow, which each grant slightly different boons to a settlement depending on how they choose to use said item during its experiment. For example, there’s a mini-slots machine from one of the experiments which could have been set to win every time a Vault dweller used it, setting that mini-slot in the Vault will help raise happiness among the settlers.
So in a strange twist of fate, Vault-Tec Workshop is less “crappy rip-off settlement items found in the vanilla game” DLC and more “unique, but short quest-line and area DLC with some settlement items from the vanilla game thrown in.” It might not sound that different, but there is a difference. Vault-Tec Workshop actually gives players their money’s worth this time around with a series of decent quests, a huge new dungeon-like settlement to build on, and some new items that no-one cares about. But the best part is…Vault-Tec Workshop was the last DLC pack holding players off until Nuka-World’s release.
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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