After being named ‘Best Game in 2016’ by the BAFTA Game Awards, Fallout 4 has given us more content to play with in its first DLC – Automatron. This additional content gives players the ability to build and customise their own robots as you play through a 3-5 hour story of four quests.
The story can be started at level 15 after purchase of the DLC so it isn’t something that you have to be particularly powerful to complete. That being said, there are some enemies within the quests that can be a nuisance to kill, but I would say that’s more down to their use of heavy weapons and increased armour so you just have to be more careful when facing them. The story begins after a distress call is heard which leads to a robot named Ada. You are told that there is a villain known as ‘The Mechanist’ who is a threat to the Commonwealth. It is your job to then hunt down this villain by gunning down various robots until you come face to face with him.
I have to admit; I was a little surprised when I realised that there were only four main quests to be completed. By the end, I was wondering whether the DLC was really worth it after such a short narrative. Not only this, but I also felt that the story wasn’t one of Fallouts strongest as there were ways which could have made it better. For example, the ending wasn’t as striking as I would have hoped after the repetitive build-up of robo-wars. But then I realised, the story is the minor aspect of the game. The real additional content is the robot customisation.
In classic Fallout style, when you want to craft something you have to find the resources. This is true when creating your beloved robots as well. The customisation options are varied and the great thing about it is you don’t need to endlessly invest your skill points to make a half-decent robo-pal. Of course, if you have a higher robotics level then you can acquire more things, but my robot certainly wasn’t useless even though I had no invested points in the skill.
Another great aspect is that you have the choice of customising robot companions that you may already have like Codsworth, or you can create your own! I favoured creating my own just to give a robot some originality. Although, an issue I found with this is that as creative as the robot looks, its personality is somewhat lacking. That being said, the fighting abilities alongside the appearance of my robot really made the fights more interesting as I made an effort to utilise my robot the best that I could.
In addition to the main quest, there are also smaller settlement quests available. These are particularly useful to find resources to use on the robots which is key as certain robots may be more favourable over others depending on the quest. Some missions will be better suited to a slow, armored up robot where as others may be more suited to an agile, flying robot. With this much customisation available, I found it difficult to even go back to having a human companion!
There are also a few new weapons introduced through the DLC. I can’t say that I have used them all and I’m sure hardcore players will uncover more secret and even better weapons, but from what I have used they are definitely tailored to fighting robots. Whether it be a weapon made from a robot head or a weapon that jolts enemies upon impact, you’re certainly kitted out to taking on the robot armies.
The narrative may not be as enticing as I’d hoped and the added characters may not have interesting personalities, but I don’t think it has a huge impact on this DLC. After looking back, I would say the aim of this DLC is to unlock the robot crafting station and the added story is just a bonus. The customisation of robots really makes you feel like you have a true companion. Something that you can rely on to help out in any situation. I would definitely recommend this added content, simply to spend those hours creating your perfect robotic companion.
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