As Bethesda opens the vaults once again for Fallout 76, here's why the world of gaming still needs a Fallout: New Vegas sequel. Before the surprise announcement of Fallout 76, fans were left guessing what Bethesda had up its sleeve when it teased something new. Promising a huge E3 2018, there still might be more to come from the company this year - Starfield, perhaps? - but Fallout: New Vegas 2 won't be part of it.
In the wake of Fallout 76, developers Obsidian have fanned the flames of hope with their own tragic response to Bethesda's next game. Now that the gears have started turning again, it could be time for Bethesda to take a gamble on the main series spinoff that was an unsurprising hit of 2010. Let's take a look at the facts in case anyone's still unconvinced.
Fallout 5 Is Still Quite A Ways Off
Just as Activision churns out regular Call of Duty games - through Infinity Ward, Sledgehammer, and Treyarch - there has always been a sense that Fallout could offer more if a variety of creative minds put their heads together. Past Fallout developers have included Black Isle, Interplay, and Obsidian, and just as Call of Duty offers different styles of gameplay underneath the same umbrella, Bethesda could branch out its developers away from Bethesda Game Studios. While a Fallout game every year runs the risk of turning into overkill, the current wait between entries can be frustrating to say the least.
When Bethesda was still over the moon from the success of Fallout 3, they decided to fast-track New Vegas through Obsidian Entertainment. The result was better than anyone could've expected and it seems odd that, after all these years, Bethesda hasn't tried to do it again. Fallout spinoffs have been inconsistent over the course of the franchise's history, to say the least. Notably, Interplay's Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel claimed the title as the first console game in the series, but alongside not aging particularly well and receiving a mixed reception in 2004, it is hardly the beloved Fallout entry that New Vegas would become. There was a decade between Fallout 2 and Fallout 3, followed by another seven years until Fallout 4 released. Admittedly, there were games like New Vegas and Brotherhood in between, but history suggests that another core Fallout game is still a ways off. There may be talk of Fallout 5, but with Fallout 4 still offering plenty and focus undoubtedly shifting to Fallout 76, it looks a little early for another direct sequel.
Another Console Title
Don't get us wrong, the prospect of any Fallout game is enough to send anyone out into the wasteland and risk radiation poisoning. That being said, if Fallout 76 is heading down the rumored online route, then franchise fans may be longing for a classic Fallout experience. Let's also not forget the previous failure of Fallout Online if 76 is planning to move into an MMO-esque territory. Settling out of court, Bethesda managed to gain the rights back for Fallout Online in 2012 during a bitter legal battle, so here's hoping the studio has learned their lesson.
Although Fallout 5 is inevitably somewhere down the line, there is currently no news as to when that could be. Both Sony and Microsoft may be looking to release the PlayStation 5 and another Xbox, but neither is expected to release until after 2020. There is just enough room for another big Fallout game before this generation of consoles bows out, aside from Fallout 76, of course. Despite the odd freeze and some dodgy lip syncing, New Vegas was pretty solid for its time. As one of the most replayable titles in the series, colorful characters like Matthew Perry's mobster Benny, the dictatorial Caesar, and the Howard Hughes-esque Mr. House. There may be an argument for a remastered New Vegas version akin to Red Dead Redemption's 4K update for the Xbox One X, but just as Rockstar Games is pushing ahead with Red Dead Redemption 2, a New Vegas 2 makes just as much sense.
Fallout: New Orleans Would Be Perfect
New Orleans, New Mexico, New York? There is any number of "New" titles that Obsidian could tackle, but let's remember that Bethesda trademarked Fallout: New Orleans back in 2016. What could've been something big has failed to materialize into anything yet, leading some to think it was a hoax. Obsidian was also working on something known as Project Louisiana - adding more speculation of Fallout: New Orleans - which turned out to be this year's Pillars of Eternity II.
Although New Vegas neatly wrapped the story of The Courier, the pieces are there to go back. Fallout 76's timestamp puts it as the earliest Fallout game to date. There is nothing wrong with prequels, but treading over old ground is a big possibility with Fallout 76. Similar to the Bioshock series, the multiple endings of New Vegas were affected by the choices the player made. Any of the endings gave an opportunity for a continuation, but if New Vegas 2 was to exist, one ending would have to be settled on as canon. For more rumors of a new New Vegas game, these stem from Fallout 4's Cabot House mission. Upon completion, NPC Jack says the following line: "Maybe I'll finally travel to the Southwest. My father was always convinced that there was another alien city buried somewhere in the Mojave Desert."
If that doesn't scream potential spinoff to explore Area 51 or something a little more sci-fi, then nothing does. Obsidian Entertainment working off this as a premise would be a great tie-in between the numerical Fallout games and a possible New sub-franchise. Whether returning to New Vegas to see the aftermath of the New California Republic v Legion war or seeing society rebuild somewhere else, the fan-favorite status of New Vegas alone is enough to sell copies. Given that Fallout constantly evolves and shifts itself around - in both time and location - it's not that difficult to think about what Obsidian could do with a change of location.
Looking at the overwhelming success and longevity of Grand Theft Auto Online (effectively a clever GTA V spinoff) Fallout could be following suit with Fallout 76, but just as Rockstar isn't resting on its laurels with GTA, neither should Bethesda. Whatever E3 2018 holds for the company, gamers don't have to wait much longer to see whether Fallout 3 anniversary remaster or Starfield are in the cards. While, fans may be disappointed to hear that Fallout: New Vegas 2 is currently off the table, who knows what the future holds? Those bright lights of Sin City might be just too much to resist for the ever-growing Fallout franchise.