The biggest reason I’m waiting is because of something that happened to me with Skyrim. Last year, I got a new gaming PC and decided to take it for test run with Skyrim (my favorite game of 2011). I wasn’t expecting to go through the whole thing again. I just wanted to play something familiar to see what my new computer could do and dip my toe into the wide array of available mods – but that’s not what happened.
With just a few mods installed, I found the game completely transformed. When people talk about mods for Skyrim, they usually talk about all of the visual enhancements. However, those weren’t my favorite part. As much as I like Bethesda’s games, they tend to have a lot of annoying little things that I just have to put up with – except I suddenly didn’t anymore in Skyrim. Hate lockpicking minigames? Get rid of them. Don’t like the user interface? Get a better one. Tired of not being able to carry your loot? Take encumbrance out of the equation. I couldn’t believe the difference; Skyrim was great before, but after a few alterations, it became one of the best games I’ve ever played.
I enjoyed playing both versions of Skyrim, but I wish my time with the game had not been fractured into two experiences. I was constantly comparing my fun-but-flawed playthrough on 360 to my more refined PC run. I regret that the power of certain quests and moments was diluted on my first playthrough because I was distracted by the minor inconveniences that were fixed on my second.
I don’t want the same thing to happen with Fallout 4. As good as the game may be, I only want to play it once, and that will be on PC. The way to ensure that I’m getting the experience I want is to exercise restraint and wait until it’s closer to the best game it can be. That doesn’t mean that I want to wait years like I did with Skyrim, but a little extra time will go a long way.
Of course, that means that I’m placing a lot of faith in Bethesda and its mod community, but given the precedent set by the studio’s previous titles, I doubt that trust is misplaced. Not only does Bethesda regularly patch its titles after release, but it also is one of the best developers in terms of opening up its games for the community to play around with. Some mods and hacks are available already, but that number will grow and their quality will increase. As fun as Fallout 4 is right now, it will only get better. The trick is deciding when to finally start playing – finding the sweet spot for optimizing my experience without waiting too long. Considering the buzz that Fallout 4 generates, resisting temptation isn’t easy – but I’m hoping it will pay off for me when the time comes.
the author Joe Juba