Fallout 4: Should It Borrow Shadow of Mordor’s Nemesis System?

Fallout: Shadow of The Enclave. I would play that forever.

Posted By | On 15th, Mar. 2015

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It’s been a long time since there has been any legitimate innovation in the way a game works. What we often call amazing new mechanics are, in reality, watered down versions of mechanics that already existed and have been changed in some way to appear fresh and new. Take Assassin’s Creed Parkour and Batman’s Freeflow Combat mechanics, throw them into a blender, and you get Shadow of Mordor’s amazing combat system.

It’s that simple from a design perspective. But Shadow of Mordor, unlike many games before it, actually did do something new and awe inspiring. The “Nemesis System”. It allows for real time tracking of opponents that hold grudges, real time scaling of adversary’s that have slain you, a chain of events that you can literally trace across Mordor and follow to its grim and pointy end if you’re skilled enough to take out the target.

So I ask you. Should Fallout 4 use such a system? When presented with the idea, I admit I was torn. You see, I love the Nemesis System, I think it’s well implement, sturdy and a reliable source of entertainment. But does it really fit the Fallout universe? It does and it doesn’t. While it would be perfectly within the realms of possibility to shoot a Super Mutant in the face with a blunderbuss, only to have it survive, then find and kill you, the same can’t be said of many other enemies in the game. A lot of the time you’re killing wild creatures, other times you’re killing bandits or raiders. There’s honestly not much in the game that can genuinely withstand the amount of hostility you exude.

But, and it’s a big but, the Nemesis System would be an amazing tool to implement into an ongoing rivalry between Brotherhood of Steel and Enclave forces. Both sides are human, both sides wear powered armour so we know they can take a beating. One side, the Enclave, controls the sky and the other side has a series of underground bunkers and strongholds.

This offers both factions a means of retreat that could justifiably explain the survival and eventual return of enemy forces that just so happen to hold a grudge against those that wounded them in the first place. If you can find a way to throw the player into the mix then you’ve got yourself a living, breathing, self sustaining world of combat. This is, of course, all speculatory, but you must admit that if implemented properly, even as a background system, it would change the dynamic of Fallout for the better.


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