Will we ever get a Fallout: New Vegas 2? Who knows, and maybe it’s time to stop asking, because at E3 2021, Obsidian Entertainment has made it clear that The Outer Worlds is now a franchise of its own. The Outer Worlds 2, the follow-up to the acclaimed sci-fi RPG, will let us continue its absurd capitalist hellscape…in space!
There’s no release date, no gameplay footage, nothing really—a fact that Obsidian points out in its teaser, poking fun at itself. Lots of developers do exactly this during showcases, but at least Obsidian has the self-awareness to cop to it. We do know that the next RPG will be coming to Game Pass on release day. But as the trailer points out, don’t expect many of the things in it to actually make it to the final game. It’s just there to be dramatic and, as Obsidian put it, bolster preorder sales!
So, what can we expect? Likely, more of that classic Obsidian DNA found in the first game. Not only are there a variety of companions to befriend and saddle with all your extra weapons, The Outer Worlds is also big on player choice. And like Fallout before it, The Outer Worlds also lets you play as a character with low intelligence—something that will then vastly change the options available to you.
Throughout the original game, there’s an ongoing concern with class and corporate power. One of the most prevalent motifs belongs to the always-smiling Moon Man, mascot of the all-powerful Spacer’s Choice corporation. Spacer’s Choice has overtaken nearly everything in this world, with employees always repeating the company motto.
Everything about the social order, then, revolves around your ability to work. If you can’t work, you are labeled lazy and incompetent—and then promptly ostrasized. The problem is that, in this world, the reason for your inability to work never matters. If you’re sick, the twisted logic in this world goes, it was probably because you weren’t a good worker. Productive members of society have access to medication, while poor workers are denied nearly everything, making the flawed hierarchy a self-fulfilling prophecy. As our interview with senior designer Brian Heins put it, “The hardest thing in this world is to live in it.”
Obsidian has released two packs of DLC for The Outer Worlds, Peril on Gorgon in late 2020, and Murder on Eridanos in 2021.