Derik Badman's Journal

2019-11-09 03:04

A lazy Saturday afternoon. I finished The Outer Worlds which turned out being a smaller game than I expected. The space navigation map had a lot of places on it that it turns out you never actually go to. In the end, it was a fun game but not a particularly great one. Certainly not one I will be revisiting. I do have a tendency to replay games when I really like them. I've played the Dragon Age, Mass Effect, and Witcher games multiple times each, and always enjoyed my replays: finding new parts of the game, trying out different characters, making different decisions to trigger different stories and endings.

The Outer Worlds had decision elements, but most of them felt pretty limited and once you made them didn't do much more than effect the long ending where a narrator tells you all about what happened to all the different groups, people, and places. The game also ended up feeling both small and... excessive. I was playing on the "normal" difficulty level and there were all these consumables and equipment mods and such that I just never really needed. It ended up being just a lot of stuff to pickup, carry around, and ossacionally sell for not enough money to make it worthwhile. While occasionally going the extra mile to explore and find secrets brought out alternate ways to resolve a quest or just extra narrative information, a lot of the time it was just discovering more crap that mostly you didn't need anyway. One of the things I always liked about the Mass Effect games is they didn't overburden you with stuff, and instead focused on character and story. This game felt like it was trying to go a little too far into the first person shooter mode but also maintain a rich narrative.

There were also a few other aspects of the game I literally never used, like some kind of time stopping power that I kept forgetting I had, and my NPC companions had special abilities that I never remembered or used. They seemed completely extraneous.

At least it didn't end up being a game I wasted weeks on. I was entertained, but also felt like it was not totally worth the time I put into it. Back to other endeavors. I really have a lot of books I need to read, I should devote the time I spent on games to more of those. The piles in my office are getting a little ridiculous and I have more books to pick up the library.