I have made no secret that 1988’s Wasteland from Interplay is my favourite game ever. It was ground breaking for the good old Commodore 64 and saw many, many hours of play from me. It even accounts for my greatest gaming achievement. So to see a official sequel in Wasteland 2 was just fantastic. A third, Wasteland 3, well, it is definitely a highlight of an otherwise pretty shitty 2020. With names like Deth, Vargas, and Brygo bringing a big smile to my face. I was ready to return to the Wasteland.
Welcome to the frozen wastelands of Colorado, Ranger. After being ambushed enroute you are the last remaining Rangers from Team November. You are tasked with establishing a new base of operations and with the help of a local ‘Patriarch’ you may just achieve this. But at what costs? Already upsetting some gamers with its lack of clear direction when it comes to in game decisions, Wasteland 3 continues to blur right from wrong. Decisions made will have consequences, short term gain might come round to cause a long term problem. Is an eye for an eye the right thing to do? Your call. I have many regrets already in Wasteland 3. What if, seems to be a common thought.
Another Day in Iso.
Just like the recently released, and quite excellent, Pathfinder: Kingmaker, Wasteland 3 is viewed from an isometric perspective. The big difference with Wasteland 3 is that you have the ability to swing the camera around the full 360 degrees. After stating how a fixed camera wasn’t the end of the world, I am thankful in Wasteland 3 it can be moved. Because of the heavy reliance on ranged combat, finding targets in cover or not in you line of sight is much more important. The post apocalyptic visuals are great, and really faithful to the whole Wasteland vibe. Fans of anything post apocalyptic will love many of the well design locations, which are now moved between by armed vehicle. Treated like a party member, the Kodiak armoured vehicle can even be upgraded.
You Have A Potty Mouth, Boy.
The dialogue and cut scene language is definitely not for children. Hell, even much of the ambient audio snippets are down right brutal. That said the whole context and content of Wasteland 3 is very, very mature. From the crass humour to the serious moral choices. I love not being told what to do or having harsh realities censored. It is how the world, well, America, would end up post nuke. But not for kids, even the wife gave me a sideways look at some of the content. But what kind of brothel would it be if it didn’t have ‘that’ option? And to counter all this nastiness why not have a greenhouse full of Cabbage Patch Kids. Planted in the dirt, of course.
With skills like Sneaky Shit, Weird Science, Animal Whisperer, and of course, Toaster Repair you know you are in for something different from the outset. That is if you are new to the Wasteland, old fans will smirk and reach for some Snake Squeezins. I have restarted three times already because I want to create a perfect party. But each time I get further in the game only to find another choice would have been better. There is pre-set party members for those who want to jump straight in, or the decent creation options.
There is multiplayer. Something I haven’t even looked at. Wasteland will always be a glorious single player role playing experience in my books. Many of the choices are just too personal to have to share. Anyway how do you explain to your co-op partner that you ‘just felt like mowing down that particular group of teens’? Maybe they wouldn’t get off your lawn?
Wasteland 3 is beautifully familiar, but an all new adventure. New friends and old enemies. With Wasteland 3 in my hot little hands I’m ready for another lockdown. Thank you Mr Brygo, I mean Mr Fargo. I love your work.