Want to get a sense of how big Fallout 4 is? At least one player is already trying to figure that out.
More and more of Fallout 4 has been leaking to the internet, ahead of the game’s release. The latest spoilery bit of information that’s floating around is the size of the Fallout 4 Boston-area map, which is notable given how cagey Bethesda has been regarding Fallout 4’s size. Recently, however, Redditor RedBeardedT shared a link to a video that showcases a player running from one end of the map to the other. You can view that here, if you’d like. There’s also a re-upload by bconn below. Both may be gone by the time you read this, but I’ll describe the footage below.
In total, it takes the player about 10 minutes and 40 seconds to traverse the main map. Along the way, the player encounters a lot of, well, desolate wasteland. This is the post-apocalypse, after all! Curiously, you can also spot areas of the map that seem particularly volatile, complete with lightning-like flashes and plenty of irradiated ground. It almost looks like a radiation storm or something, but I digress.
Comparing Fallout 4’s size to other games is difficult—many walk-throughs uploaded by players often take the longest route possible, or the speed is affected by the mode of transportation used. Walking—not running—through Skyrim, for example, takes a little over two hours. The Witcher 3 also takes around two hours, but the game’s map is also segmented in a very different way. It seems difficult to judge whether or not Fallout 4 is “bigger” or “smaller” than other games...and maybe it doesn’t matter.
Consider the density at play here. The amount of time it takes to travel through a space has no bearing on how much you can actually DO within that area, or how much stuff is contained within that space. Notice, for example, that there’s a segment of the video where the player discovers three different areas within 15 seconds. Who knows what those areas contain, or the number of buildings you can explore? What is the quality of the stuff contained within those spaces, anyway? In an interview with Game Informer, Bethesda says it used a task force that balanced how much a player can interact with and do in Fallout 4, with the hopes of hitting a sweet-spot of not too busy, and not too empty. In that same write-up, Game Informer says that Fallout 4 is Bethesda’s most “vertical” than any game they’ve released before. So, that’s all worth keeping in mind here.