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Fallout: New Vegas: Lonesome Road
Score: 65%
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Developer: Obsidian Entertainment
Media: Download/1
Players: 1
Genre: RPG/Adventure/First Person Shooter

Fallout: New Vegas: Lonesome Road attempts to answer a lot of questions. As the last bit of DLC for New Vegas, Lonesome Road finally answers one of the larger questions surrounding the original game by bringing players face-to-face with Ulysses, the mysterious "other courier" who passed on the job that got you into your current waste-walking predicament.

Though Lonesome Road is an important piece of DLC, it is also one of the more disappointing entries, especially coming off Old World Blues. As the name suggests, you're all alone as your travel through a linear plot leading to your final confrontation with Ulysses. It's a nice post-script on the player's story, though the decision to pull the trigger on a purchase is a judgment call.

What I Liked:
Fallout: New Vegas: Lonesome Road begins like any other piece of Fallout DLC, with a message on your Pip-Boy. This time you are contacted by Ulysses, who offers to reveal a couple of choice secrets - including the reason he rejected the Platinum Chip job - if you're willing to travel to The Divide, an irradiated stretch of land deep in the Mojave.

What initially sounds like an incredibly promising adventure quickly becomes a dull trudge through a linear patch of land. As always, your companions aren't allowed to come with you; instead you're left with ED-E, a clone of your first eyebot. ED-E is a good friend to have and one of the DLC's better additions. While ED-E doesn't provide much support during combat, it is an invaluable addition. It provides you with upgrades and is one of the download pack's few endearing characters. Other than Ulysses, who talks way too much, ED-D is the only non-lethal entity in The Divide.

Lonesome Road tosses in a few new weapons, including an upgradable, multi-fire rocket launcher, flare gun and Deathclaw-related melee weapon. The pack also ups the level cap another five levels and drops in a new, ultra-powerful Perk.

What I Didn't Like:
As much as I've enjoyed past DLC packs for Fallout: New Vegas, I couldn't get into Fallout: New Vegas: Lonesome Road. While past pieces of DLC were packed with personality and offered different sorts of adventure, Lonesome Road never breaks from what feels like guided exposition. The road to The Divide is straight with few detours outside a missile detonating side-quest. Even this deviation feels too straightforward and, at times, feels like it was tacked on just to give the illusion of Lonesome Road being something more than it really is. You'll come across a few difficult battles, but there isn't a whole lot to see or do as you make your way to Ulysses.

While gameplay sometimes come up short, Obsidian has always done a great job of at least giving players an enjoyable story. Even here, Lonesome Road even comes up short. Other than promising answers to lingering problems, there's very little to the game's tale. You venture through a section, listen to Ulysses's rambling and repeat. Although he offers a couple of interesting comments, I felt the entire ordeal was bland and took way too long getting to the point.

Lonesome Road introduces a few new enemies, though most aren't much more than amped up versions of enemies we've already seen. Early on you'll run into the Marked Men, a group of mutants bound together by their pain. They're a cool idea, but are little more than incredibly accurate versions of other mutants. Eventually you come across Tunnelers, packs of small enemies that are a challenge for even the strongest of Deathclaws. Speaking of Deathclaws, you'll eventually run into a huge Deathclaw you can kill you in one hit regardless of your armor. These are neat additions, but were more of an annoying frustration than a challenge.

Up until this point, I've enjoyed the steady stream of Fallout: New Vegas DLC. No matter how hard I tried, however, I couldn't get behind Fallout: New Vegas: Lonesome Road. Although it provides a big piece of the overall story puzzle, it doesn't provide gameplay to back it up. After the excellent Old World Blues, I expected more from Lonesome Road.

Unless you're a Fallout fan dying to have questions answered, it is best to skip Lonesome Road.

-Starscream, GameVortex Communications
AKA Ricky Tucker

Related Links:

Microsoft Xbox 360 Pinball FX 2: Ms. Splosion Man Sony PlayStation 3 Fallout: New Vegas: Courier's Stash

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