Fallout 4 has a ridiculously priced season pass. Though it started out at $29.99, which is average for such a thing, it jumped to $49.99 not long after DLC announcements and releases began appearing. Which, initially, may not have seemed so bad. Far Harbor is $24.99 on its own and Automatron is $9.99. Once all of the add-ons are out, it’ll have saved us about $20. But, was all that additional content worth that money to begin with?
Let’s think about Bethesda DLC for a moment, shall we? Fallout 3 had five massive add-ons that added new areas, missions, and lore to the game. Fallout: New Vegas had four story add-ons that taught us so much more about the Courier and world he or she explored, as well as various packs of additional items. Even though Skyrim was rather skimpy, with only two story add-ons and one that added homes and adoption to the game, its two story add-ons were substantial and added major content to the game. All three of these games had DLC that really mattered. It would take hours to savor and play, the lore was incredibly educational, and it felt like we were getting our money’s worth. Can we say the same for Fallout 4 ?
Far Harbor is supposed to be the best of Fallout 4 . It certainly does add a rather large area, though most of that is wilderness. We learn more about Nick Valentine, one of the best companions, and get to make a decision that greatly shapes the face of the island. But, it feels more like Dragonborn’s equal than its superior in terms of scope. When it comes to things I learned as a result of Far Harbor, Fallout: New Vegas ‘ Lonesome Road felt like it did more for my character’s story.
Speaking of equivalent exchanges, does Automatron really feel like a $10 adventure to you? It certainly doesn’t seem like it, when compared to events like Operation Anchorage, Broken Steel, The Pitt, Point Lookout, Mothership Zeta, Honest Hearts, Old World Blues, and Dead Money. We get to make robot companions and follow a questline that takes us a few hours and results in a new settlement and moral decision. Fine, but all of those Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas adventures did the same, and at a lower cost. While you can’t discount the creative element, I felt like I was paying more money for an experience that, in previous games, would have been more meaningful.
Then, there are the three workshop add-ons. For people who are big on settlements and crafting, these are pretty big deals. Especially Wasteland Workshop, which essentially gives you monstrous pets. But, when you look at the catalog of items you get, I wonder about its general worth. It feels more like those The Sims add-ons than something you’d expect from a Bethesda epic like Fallout 4 . Of the three workshop add-ons we’re going to get, the Vault-Tec Workshop is the only one that seems like it actually does anything different. Though, I will admit the screenshot that makes it look like a prettier version of the Fallout Shelter mobile game gives me pause.
Perhaps all of this is part of the grieving process. When you look at the Fallout 4 add-ons, three are essentially item or settlement-based and three add new adventures and areas. It’s hard to cope when you see Bethesda gradually offering fewer and fewer add-ons that add to the story and experience, going from Fallout 3 ‘s five, to Fallout: New Vegas ‘ four, and finally Fallout 4 ‘s three. When you enjoy something, you can’t help wanting more – especially when the extras being offered may not compare with fond memories of add-ons from other games.