First of all, let me just say, I absolutely love the new open-world style Bethesda and Obsidian seem to be favoring lately with their DLC packs. Honest Hearts, and now Old World Blues, just had great wide open areas with lots to explore and no feeling of being rushed to finish the story/mission of the DLC pack. The earlier attempts at DLC for the revamped Fallout series had a tendency to feel small and linear, and well, to be honest, sometimes forgettable.
Old World Blues is anything but forgettable. Looking at the title, one would probably be lead to think of something somber, serious, and maybe even sad. This DLC pack is absolutely anything but though. With Old World Blues, Obsidian has brought the old humor we all know and love from the earlier Fallout games back to the series. There’s just so much funniness going on in this DLC pack. Granted, sometimes it can get a little annoying, like the talking equipment, but overall this DLC pack feels a lot more like ‘Fallout’, to me at least, than a lot of the other DLC packs have.
The story for Old World Blues takes the old-school sci-fi approach. But have no fears, it’s a lot better done than the previous sci-fi DLC entry Mothership Zeta. You’re transported to a research facility in the middle of an area referred to as the Big Empty, which is rumored to be deadly and from which there could be no return. The name Big Empty ends up being a derivative of the actual name: Big Mountain Research Facility or Big MT for short, which over time just got replaced by Big Empty it seems. It is a classic tale of a team of researchers who have split, leaving the ‘good’ Dr. Klein against the aptly named Dr. Mobius. Oh, and another minor point, they’ve taken your brain, along with your spine and heart. You didn’t need those anyway right? All in all, it’s a very fun story, complete with a nice opening cinematic to explain it all and get you on your way.
The Big MT crater isn’t the largest area ever added to a Fallout game via DLC, but it is pretty densely packed for its size. There are over 30 locations to explore. It has a nice open world feeling to it, where you’re not pushed in any specific direction. You’re free to explore at your own whim and approach quests in whatever order you’d like. There’s a lot of great narrative and backstory to be found scattered around the crater. There’s even a lot of backstory stuff that applies to the main game and New Vegas region outside of the Big MT and stuff related to previous DLC. And to top it all off, you get a new residence in this DLC that is packed full of great features that you’ll unlock and fix as you progress.
As we’ve come to expect, Old World Blues brings some new toys to your toy box. There are easily more new weapons and gadgets and perks and everything else you’d expect to see than we’ve seen in past DLCs. Stuff like the Sonic Emitter and Protonic Axe are just amazingly fun and powerful. The new ‘Them’s Good Eattin’ perk is a godsend for Hardcore play throughs. And then there’s the aforementioned new residence packed full of goodies. The Sink (yeah, that’s the name of your new crib) is chock full of robots and gadgets and appliances for you to repair and upgrade that will provide great benefits and items for your use once you do.
Speaking of those items in your new residence, they, like everything else in Old World Blues, is overflowing with personality. Which is odd, considering in your time in Big MT, you’ll never encounter another living being; it’s all robots and sentient appliances, etc. Even the light switches in your apartment and the armor/suits you wear and the weapons you carry in some cases have a personality and talk to you. In some cases it can get a little repetitive and annoying, but it’s definitely a new and nice touch and brings the world to life in a way you wouldn’t have expected.
To put it simply, Old World Blues is easily the best of the available DLC for Fallout: New Vegas, and quite possibly the best DLC for the entire revamped Fallout franchise. It just brings so much fun and entertainment and personality to the table. Of course there’s the standard five level cap raise we’ve come to expect, and tons of new and very useful gear. But what really puts it over the top for me is the story, the environment and the personality. If you’re only going to buy one DLC, this is absolutely the one to buy in my opinion.
- Great Story
- Fun and Useful New Gear and Perks
- Chock Full of Personality and Humor
- Well Done Voice Acting
- Story and Narrative Tie in Well with Main Game
- Quests Can Get a bit Repetitive
- Same Glitches We Know and ‘Love’ Still Present