Rad Reviews: Fallout 4 (settlement system)

Rad Reviews cover all those games that a Quick Snipe just couldn’t do justice on. AAA titles, brand new IPs and just plain brilliant/awful games all find a home here. Today we’re looking at the Fallout 4 settlement system.

I like the settlement system.

But it feels half done.

The settlement system, along with the weapon and modding system, was for me one of the most interesting new additions for Fallout 4.

It was touted that you could build your own settlements, link them together, get them to trade, fill them up with useful settlers and basically retake the wasteland for your people.

It’s damn fun to be able to build in so many different regions, and very satisfying seeing your settlement grow from a little shitbox shack in the woods to a (semi) vibrant community with shops and crops and all the little amenities.

I was particularly impressed with the electricity system. Certain parts of your settlement requiring power made generator and power placement strategically important, and it was very satisfying seeing your new home light up.

But the electricity system is the only one of the settlement features that feels vaguely finished.

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Image courtesy of Games Radar.

Don’t get me wrong, the settlement system is definitely interesting, but it feels like an additional feature that was tacked on because of the prevalence of games like The Forest, Minecraft, and others that add to the recent trend of settlement building in FPS games.

With Bethesda having already made Hearthfire for Skyrim, I was expecting a little bit… more from the objects in my settlements. You could place bobblehead and magazine racks, but for some reason they omitted mannequins or even simple weapon stands. For a game that has such a heavy emphasis on loot, this seems counter intuitive and a little disappointing.

The workshop UI is also lacklustre. It doesn’t feel polished, and is often downright ugly. It honestly looks like an alpha stage mod for the game, and plays like it too with its lack of list of unassigned settlers and other basic menus that would make settlement building less of a chore.

It is need of a desperate quality of life overhaul.

I expected more of the settlement system in some ways, but I was also pleasantly surprised with the electricity system and the range of different buildings you could construct (even if the snap-to function only worked half the time). I sincerely hope that modders take advantage of the settlement system, as it provides an excellent base (hurr hurr) unto which a lot of really cool new objects, people and places could be added.

Overall, for simply existing within the game and providing a source of entertainment in FO4 behind blowing up supermutants with miniature nuclear missiles, the settlement system gets a score of:

Rad stamp
Settlement building was fun, but seemed more like a pleasant minigame than a genuine feature. Have you had fun with the settlement feature? Let us know in the comments below!

Previous article on Fallout 4 graphics.

Next article with the final wrap up: coming soon!

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