Fuck my tits until they bleed, this game is what Fallout 3 should have been and it may be Obsidian's first ever, good game. After a worrying time because I learned the game was made by people who fucking ruined KOTOR and made that turd fest Alpha Protocol, it all becomes clear that they abandoned that garbage to make this fucking awesome game. As far as I know, Obsidian actually has people in it from Black Isle who actually worked on the original Fallout games. There are a shit ton of references in the game and it is pretty much better in every aspect than Fallout 3.
First thing to note, is most of the graphics are the same, and are not the best but more than suitable. The wasteland itself is a desert environment but still has a surprising amount of variety to it from the abandoned buildings, cities, small towns, quarries, and just random shit scattered throughout the wasteland. The first thing you will notice about this game is it doesn't feel like a fucking empty abandoned game like Fallout 3 did. The wasteland is actually alive and packed with a shit ton of people all over the place who you can actually interact with. Every place you can go is uniquely designed and memorable. Unlike Fallout 3, which was a big fucking wasteland that was 90% and you couldn't remember where anything was except DC, this game has a memorable wasteland. You won't even need to use your map after awhile because every part of the wasteland is completely distinct. Fucking hooray.
Now the game is still using the shitty facial animation system from the first game which makes it look like rough and some of the textures are pretty bad. However, we know we can blame that shit on consoles fucking ruining video games like they have been. Anyways, most of the weapon models and things are the same from the first game but the Wasteland has a shit ton of stuff that you can see from everywhere. Everything in Freeside, New Vegas Strip, North Vegas, and Camp McCarran all have unique and memorable designs and make the expansive wasteland look quite fucking good.
So the game has you starting out getting popped in the fucking head for carrying a platinum chip and this becomes your quest to get it back. No one fucking shoots me and gets away with it, so I set out on a vengeance filled Journey to kill everyone in my path. The game now has a shit-ton and a multitude of factions that you can all have different allegiances with, such as the NCR, Caesers Legion, Brotherhood of Steel, and individual towns all have reputations as well. This gives you different ways to play the game which means fucking re playability already! Going with different factions means you can ally with different people and get different quests based upon how you act. The reputation system is still in the game as well which actually affects how other people react to you, as well as your faction alignment.
The leveling up system is pretty much the same except the level cap is 30 and you only get a perk every 2 levels which actually helps to balance out the game quite a bit. The game is no longer so fucking easy that you will fall asleep zooming in with VATS. The VATS system is still the same exact system from Fallout 3 but the actually gameplay has been fixed. Enemies are actually fucking tough this time around and you aren't killing super mutants with a 10mm pistol in this game. If you run into them, you better have good fucking armor or they will shit into your lungs. Same with Deathclaws, even being higher than level 20 and having a high Damage Threshold, they will still fuck you up. Speaking of Damage Threshold, a new armor system was implemented where you have a damage threshold level and any damage under that number doesn't do damage to you, and damage above that number is delt with the DT subtracted from it. This finally makes fucking sense because taking damage from small arms fire in Power Armor was fucking retarded (FALLOUT 3 COUGH). Pretty much all of the features are vastly improved and work much better in this game. Also, having enemies who are actually as fucking strong as they are supposed to be helps quite a bit.
Of course, you want to know how the combat is? It is very identical to Fallout 3 but that is a good thing as it was fun in the first game. However, the weapons are vastly improved in this game as now they are much more fluid, and there is a shot ton more weapons. Another new feature is having weapon modifications as well to speed up the weapon, add scopes, do more damage, improve conditions, etc. This is fucking sweet because you can get the Cowboy Repeater and get the weapon speed mod and fucking blow people away. It actually makes the smoother combat a lot more fun and you don't feel like you have to use VATS for every situation. You actually want to walk around and just shoot things in first person. Another thing they fixed, as well as the enemies, is that no longer do you get a billion super powerful weapons. Miniguns, Missle Launchers, Laser Miniguns, and other super powerful weapons in the game are either rare or expensive to purchase them from higher end weapon shops. The combat in the game is vastly superior, a lot more fun and filled with more and better weapons to choose from.
Moving back to the wasteland, every city, town or village you go to is filled with quests and many things to do. Each town is completely unique and doesn't reuse the same models over and over again. They each have their own design and filled with unique characters who all have unique quests that you can help them on. This is a fucking welcome relief from the empty town and cookie cutter bullshit we saw in Fallout 3.
Another major improvement? The game is much darker and contains much more of the black humor from the first two games. There is more blood in this game, people being crucified, drugs, cannibalism, and just other brutal shit going on in the game giving it a much darker atmosphere that belongs in a fallout game. Also, none of the factions are completely good or completely bad, so you cannot be just directly good or evil in the game. The NCR is somewhat good but they have problems too that cause people to hate and the Brotherhood of Steel is more like their former selves and not the fucking good-two shoes they were in Fallout 3. They will actually go around and kill people to steal their technology like they have always done (and they are absolutely badass by the way). Another improvement, companions actually have fucking personalities this time! They talk and comment about things that affect them or about the main story line, and they actually have side quests which can improve them.
Overall, everything about New Vegas is better. The quests and gameplay is much smoother, more engaging, the wasteland is much more detailed, unique and memorable. The world is actually fucking alive in this game as there are people everywhere throughout the wasteland and not just in sectioned off cities. The story is darker, much more interesting and can end in over four different ways due to their being numerous factions to choose from and how you want to complete the main quest. The game is fun as hell and I would recommend it.
New Vegas is what Fallout 3 should have been. I fucking enjoyed it immensely in every aspect, the whole game was a huge step up. 9.5/10