Review: The Outer Worlds for Nintendo Switch
The Outer Worlds aren't necessarily new. But for Nintendo Switch fans, because since Friday 5 June the game is also available for Nintendo's hybrid console from 2017. Does Obsidian finally answer that Fallout cravings for the Switch players? We'll figure it out for you.
Nintendo Switch ports are a well-known phenomenon. We have already seen many pass by and undoubtedly we will see many more. It is true that you sacrifice a lot on the Switch to be able to play a game that was originally intended for Playstation 4 and Xbox One. Still, we've seen that Nintendo's little device is more than capable of doing this. What about The Outer Worlds?
We see the hidden powers of the device, especially in games such as The Witcher 3 and DOOM. Not the most beautiful versions of the game, but damn impressive to see that such games still shine on the Switch. Each and every one of them surrenders, but retains their magic, charm and identity. Something you can't really say about Obsidian's Outer Worlds.
Sure, it's the same game, with the same story and gameplay. Yet it lacks something very crucial. The magic, the charm, the identity. You could say 'I don't know any better' if you haven't played The Outer Worlds before, but you really shouldn't want to. You're playing the same game, but not really.
The Outer Worlds is a wonderful game. But I've already tried to make that clear to you in our original review for the Playstation 4 Pro . The whole corporation's bad story may quickly get out of your head, but everything around it is well put together. A real RPG with clear influences from the 'modern' Fallout games. Especially Fallout 3 and Fallout New Vegas. Especially Fallout New Vegas, because they are the same developers after all.
The Outer Worlds was developed with a much smaller budget than New Vegas and you quickly notice that. You notice that the developers want to go in the same direction as years ago. However, the money tap stops somewhere and sometimes that disappoints a bit. The attention, love and accuracy remain unharmed, but you do miss a kind of large-scale. Especially with all the RPG elements that are ingrained in The Outer Worlds, it sometimes feels like a missed opportunity not to use them indefinitely. Anyway, nevertheless it remains a strong RPG from Obsidian.
The big question remains, however, whether this Switch port finally fulfills that Fallout crave. Personally, I say no, for the reason that this Switch version does not benefit the game at all. It's not just that you're playing an 'uglier' version of The Outer Worlds, but playing more of a stripped-down presentation of.
Look no further than your nose is long
My mother has always taught me to look beyond my nose. But short-sightedness is something that might just save you in The Outer Worlds on Nintendo Switch. I mean it very literally. Up close, in closed, closed spaces, it can pass. You can clearly see that the textures are much less sharp, but have much sharper edges. Details are difficult to make out and that's a shame, because the details are one of the elements in The Outer Worlds that give the game so much character. Almost all those details are lost in a constant haze that you play into.
It gets much worse once you play in the more open areas. Cities, villages and mainly open plains and basically everywhere where you are not surrounded by walls within 2 meters. It's just hard to see clearly what you're doing. It kind of feels like your character is a glasses wearer, but forgot to put it on. In areas with tall grass, bushes and other forms of overhangs, enemies are very hard to see and more likely to catch me with a surprise attack than the other way around, as it should be.
The environments do not give the same atmosphere as in the other versions. Crucial details are missing such as plants, colors, grooves, small objects and you name it. Anything further than 10 steps ahead has yet to be loaded as you get closer and this leaves a sour taste every time. The compromises made are too great to still consider the result as good.
Not only graphically, but also technically, the Switch version leaves a lot to be desired. In handheld mode, the game plays very awkwardly. Playing via the TV with a Pro controller already makes it a bit more pleasant, but there seems to be a kind of delay in it so that every firefight does not run smoothly or naturally.
View below the clear differences between the presentation in handheld mode and docked mode. Try to read the text on the facade of the tower in both images.docked handheld
The Outer Worlds is a beautiful game, but not suitable for Nintendo Switch. At least not in this way. We have seen many impressive Switch ports over the years, but unfortunately The Outer Worlds is not one of them. In too many ways, Obsidian's iconic RPG has to compromise to deliver a playable experience. And that experience offered is simply not that good.
The game is playable and if you really only have a Switch it's worth considering, but do you have another console? Then play it there.
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