Fallout 4 DLC: what we want from Bethesda

Thursday, 7 January 2016 11:14 GMT By Brenna Hillier

fallout_4_bethesda_e3_2015

Fallout 4 DLC: what we want from Bethesda

Bethesda has promised to introduce new features and content to Fallout 4 with a series of DLC drops. Assuming the publisher takes a similar approach to additions as it did with Skyrim (and why wouldn’t it? Some of Fallout 4’s coolest ideas have roots in Skyrim DLC), we can hazard vague guesses as to what sorts of things we might see. Plus, there are definite gaps we’d like to see filled in.

With this framework in mind, here’s our wishlist for future content drops. See to it, B.

fallout_new_vegas_mounts_mod

Mounts

If you’re yet to try a no fast travel playthrough of Fallout 4, you’re really missing out. There’s oodles of content out there which you’ll only ever see if you hoof it from place to place.

And yet, it’s so tempting to just bring up the map and shortcut, isn’t it? Our solution is mounts of some kind. Maybe they could have an inventory so you could leave them at the door to a dungeon and load them up with goods. Maybe they could go sell all your stuff in town…! Maybe they could include Deathclaws. That’s probably asking too much. How about a Giddyup Buttercup? Or a molerat, like the one in the image above, which is part of a Fallout New Vegas mod.

fallout_4_dlc_weapon_racks

Loot display stands

Either I’m missing something, or Fallout 4 containers are super boring. The Bobblehead display stand and magazine racks are cool, but when it comes to the best looking weapons you’re reduced to shoving them into trunks or spending hours trying to balance them on shelves – where they can be knocked to the ground by the faintest of breezes. Skyrim had weapon stands, and there are even instances of weapon display cases in Fallout 4 itself, so it doesn’t seem like this would be super difficult to implement. (In fact, modders have already done it – hence the image above.)

Throw in the ability to make and dress up mannequins, collect it together with a bunch of new decorative and functional settlement items (food planters!) and an increase to the settlement building limit, and you have yourself a Sims-style expansion. Money in the bank.

fallout_4_the_legend_of_zelda_mods

UI overhaul

Bethesda could simply patch in some improved interface options, like the ability to sort items by various filters or more inventory category tabs, and we’d be chuffed. But that would be 01) admitting the original UI is a bit pants and 02) missing an opportunity to make some money.

In introducing Pip-Boy customization terminals! These rare workshop benches, only available in vaults or when crafted for a bazillion resources, grant you the opportunity to download skins and operating system updates from VaultTec’s long-dormant servers. Of course, you’ll need to complete a lengthy fetch quest to awaken these servers and set up wireless transmission, but it’ll be worth it.

Fallout 4_20151108162342

Better settlement management

A set of new perks and a workshop bench provide the perfect excuse for Bethesda to make settlement management easier. I’m talking naming your settlers, managing the resources assigned to them and finding them easily on the map. This might not sound like much, but if you’re trying to set up supply lines between all your settlements and manage large populations, you spend a lot of time changing NPC outfits and running around shifting bed assignments, and it’s a total pain in the butt – especially if you only turn your attention to it later in the game after letting towns grow organically.

This add-on could also quietly introduce a bunch of fixes to things like broken workshop stat displays, and nobody would complain.

falout_4_underwater

Underwater adventures

Well, duh – there’s pretty good reason to believe this is already in the works. Plopping a vault down underwater is an easy way to expand the map, and would provide some context for the various perks and items you can use for underwater exploration – which are otherwise only very rarely useful.

We’d probably need to do something about the visibility down there, though, and some sort of special underwater power armour for those who used their perk points elsewhere. Still, seems pretty achievable.

fallout_4_dlc_children_of_atom

More Children of Atom content

The Children of Atom aren’t a big deal in Fallout 4. You meet them in a friendly fashion during the main quest, and you might come across hostile squads around certain dungeons. But they seem strangely under-utilised for such a compelling faction. Maybe it doesn’t make sense for them to be a joinable group like the other factions, but there’s certainly some great story-telling potential along the edges of the Glowing Sea.

We know there are adventures to be had out there, because Piper’s had one. Maybe that’s a good starting point? (Image credit.)

fallout_4_07

Tougher baddies

Admittedly Fallout 4 is as hard as you make it; stick to a weak build and turn the difficulty up and those Legendary enemies become terrifying. But those of you who planned your playthrough carefully and hoarded resources will get to the end of the game with masses of loot, near-invincible characters and nary a challenge in sight.

So yeah, throw something bigger and badder at us. Up the available perks and weapons if you need to, but we want to face down enormous beasties and barely live to tell the tale.

fallout_4_explosion

A fifth or “true” ending

Once you finally finish all the “find Shaun” business, Fallout 4 turns into an inter-faction struggle. It’s pretty cool that players are locked into their final choices, making a lasting impact on the Commonwealth, but many players were disappointed to find there was no peaceful resolution to matters, or closure on the Institute’s machinations.

Any expansion would necessarily have to account for the fact that the player has chosen and ending and changed the world forever, so it doesn’t seem impossible that even players have already saved in the aftermath of one of the four endings could be allowed to sidetrack into a continuation of the story of the Commonwealth.

fallout_4_piper

Expanded romances

Romance in Fallout 4 is pretty bare bones, consisting of a charisma check and an additional perk welded onto the existing company affinity system. Why not jazz it up a little bit for players who find themselves strangely attached to their packhorse offsiders and want to make things more official?

Skyrim’s marriages showed Bethesda is capable of implementing such a system. Maybe getting married could lock you out of your other romances, provide extra bonuses when travelling with a specific companion, and prevent loss of affinity with that companion. I’d suggest kissing cutscenes too, but honestly? It’d probably be a horrific nightmare of clipping and wooden faces.

fallout4_guide_mama_murphy

Guide to the Commonwealth

If you’ve finished all the side quests and main story, you’ve still only seen a fraction of the story content in Fallout 4. A whopping number of dungeons litter the map, and a good number of them are tied up in quiet little sideplots that are a delight to uncover.

Bethesda could hugely increase its “quest” content simply by foregrounding these materials; a side story log in the quest menu could list dungeons you’ve yet to explore as well as story materials like terminal entries and notes you haven’t found. Or, for a more organic feel, Perhaps Mama Murphy or a suitable replacement could suggest places of interest to visit.

fallout4_guide_strong

Transformations

Wait, wait, bear with me here. You know how in most Elder Scrolls games you can become a vampire or a werewolf or both? What if you could become a ghoul (a real one, not just the perk) or a supermutant in Fallout 4! Eh? Eh?

As well as providing a cool new way to play, there’s a heap of story hooks related to both possibilities. The threat of an army of supermutants, maybe being manipulated by a third party, makes a formidable potential antagonist. Virgil and Strong could both provide a way in here. There’s a lot of tension in the Commonwealth between humans and Ghouls, as evidenced by the Slog and Hancock’s backstory, and that latter sideplot never really got resolved. Plus, the pathos of being a Ghoul – waiting to eventually go feral – is pretty compelling.

cthulhu

A Lovecraft adventure

Bethesda loves Lovecraft; several of its games include loving tributes to the Cthulhu mythos. Fallout 4 includes one memorable dungeon with a nod to the horror master, but given the setting and the proximity of the landscapes that are woven intimately through Lovecraft’s work, there’s a prime opportunity for Bethesda to go for broke and do a whole campaign with elder god overtones.

Would an entirely Lovecraft-themed Fallout game be a good idea? Heavens no! That would be straying too far from the franchise’s roots. Would a mission chain and some spooky locations go amiss? Not in any way.

fallout_4_e3_2015_concept_art_2

A Minutemen expansion

The Minutemen are the only faction guaranteed to survive the end of Fallout 4, so they make a natural jumping off point for extra content. But also: these guys could really use a bit more love. After a solid start finding and connecting settlements, then several memorable missions related to claiming The Castle, the Minutemen story just goes off the rails. Preston arbitrarily decides two factions are a threat to the Commonwealth, and breaks from the faction’s pacifist behaviour to date in wiping them out. What?

This awkwardly shoehorned ending is probably the most interesting thing about the whole faction, to be honest, so let’s address that with some more story. Maybe Preston could develop a personality along the way?

fallout_4_dlc_glowing_sea

Put something in the damned Glowing Sea

Look Bethesda, I didn’t spend the whole game hoarding fusion cores only to discover that everything falls down before my might even before I put on my power armour. You know those big baddies I mentioned wanting? Put them in the Glowing Sea. Give me a reason to adjust to the weird UI and clunking movement of the suit. Make that reason a burning desire to stomp about in the Glowing Sea, which has an awesome atmosphere but very little else to justify the effort.

What might be out there? Glowing Sea whales. Radiation pirate ships! This shit writes itself.