Obsidian Entertainment announced The Outer Worlds some time ago. Now, they’re talking about the humor and influences in the game.
Megan Starks, a senior narrative designer, spoke with Techradar after the hands-on The Outer Worlds demo in E3. The first thing discussed is humor and how it ties into the themes of the game. The demo featured a Boarwurst factory, where cysts growing on Cystipigs are harvested and shipped as the canned meat product, a metaphor for factory farming.
“I think it’s really interesting because the two game directors, Tim [Cain] and Leonard [Boyarsky], represent each side of the humor,” Stark told interviewers. “Tim has a lighter, quirky funny, Futurama style of humor and Leonard is very dark and almost philosophical in it. When the two come together it strikes a really good balance.”
As much as some would claim that games are apolitical, they’re not. Fallout never lacked for a message – albeit one dressed in the unique (and funny) garb of the post-apocalyptic world. And that’s the kind of influence you will see in The Outer Worlds — just check the trailer above. After all, Obsidian did make New Vegas, the last good Fallout game.
“Tim and Leonard wanted to create this new IP similar to Fallout – in the sense that it’s a dark apocalyptic world,” Stark said. “Here we wanted to create a future that is a slightly dystopian society. We thought ‘what would be an interesting take on that but also funny?’ and we just ran with that.”
More than just Fallout IN SPACE
So what will set The Outer Worlds apart from Fallout? “A lot of it is the setting and the humor for sure, it’s just that personality that you get with the game,” Starks explained. “I think what people are excited about with the game is – if you’re familiar with Obsidian games – we try to take it to the max.
“The things you love about the games that we make, we want to provide to you in The Outer Worlds. It is very player-choice driven, we want a really rich story but everything you do has reactivity to it and you can play the way that you want to play whether that’s good, evil, psychopath, whether you want to side with the scientists and try to save the system or whether you want to join the board and reinforce their agenda or if you want to double-cross both of them and do a lone-wolf thing.
“I think that’s part of it. The games people already like from the studio, you are going to get that same experience here. ”
Choose your path
That choice part – join the one side or the other, or do your own thing – will be intimately familiar to the ones who played Fallout: New Vegas and saw its multiple approaches to the final fate of the city of sin. Choice and consequence were never absent from the studio’s works – well, maybe except for Dungeon Siege III.
“There are a lot of examples of choice from the highest level, like do you want to be the board or a scientist or neither?” Starks said. “Even on a small level, say if I’m playing a dumb scientist character and I make certain choices in dialogue, other people will react to that and the dialogue will play out in different ways.”
For me, the game that had the most interesting effects when it came to choice and dialogues would have to be Alpha Protocol. That just proves how great Obsidian is at taking a humorous approach while still managing to develop an engaging work that touches on real-life subjects. And since rumors about that we will be able to use social skills in combat, one can only guess at the opportunities that The Outer Worlds will offer.
The Outer Worlds is set to release on October 25.