The Outer Worlds, an action role-playing game created by the legendary Obsidian Entertainment, will be released this evening on PC and available shortly after for Xbox and PS4. A port to Nintendo Switch is also in the pipeline.
Who is Obsidian Entertainment?
Obsidian Entertainment was formed in 2003, just before the closure of Black Isle Studios – the studio famous for the Baldur’s Gate series, Icewind Dale and Planescape Torment. Obsidian’s early games focused on creating sequels — namely Knights of the Old Republic II, Neverwinter Nights 2, Fallout: New Vegas and Dungeon Siege III.
Most recently, Obsidian released Pillars of Eternity (a new IP reminiscent of the old Baldur’s Gate games) and a sequel called Deadfire.
Obsidian is done playing second fiddle, however, and as top-dog RPG developer Bethesda suffers bad press from Fallout 76, Obsidian is releasing a game designed in part by the original Fallout creators.
What is The Outer Worlds About?
The Outer Worlds is set in an alternate future, similar to Fallout, that diverged from our own timeline in 1901. In this reality, President William McKinley was never assassinated, which means that Theodore Roosevelt never succeeded him. Without Roosevelt’s influence, the idea here is that large businesses grew without control and became megacorporations which eventually began colonizing and terraforming alien planets.
The player begins when their colony ship’s faster-than-light course goes astray, leading to the player’s character waking up on the edge of colony space. Exploring nearby colonies begins revealing the true nature of these megacorporations. Overall, there are a number of planets to explore (each controlled by their own corporation) as you develop your characters skills and personality. The player will need to choose sides from a number of factions and a branching storyline.
Fans of Fallout will find more than just similar shooting mechanics, retro music and character development. The razor-sharp wit and assorted personalities sprinkled throughout the game are sure to delight.
Obsidian Entertainment was recently acquired by Microsoft Studios, become an in-house team for Xbox development. Rather than making the game a console exclusive, Microsoft decided to release it for free to anyone with a GamePass subscription.
Players with GamePass can download and play the game for no extra cost on both Xbox and Windows 10 PCs.
Not Without Controversy
Earlier this year in March, it was announced that The Outer Worlds would be released exclusively on Epic Games Store and Microsoft Store. An originally planned Steam release was delayed for at least one year. Steam users were rightfully outraged, feeling that their choice to buy the game on whichever platform they preferred was being abused.
So far, reviews are mostly favorable. If you enjoyed RPGs like Mass Effect, Knights of the Old Republic and Fallout, then The Outer Worlds is definitely your jam.