I'm beginning to think that this is going to be the generation of the RPG. We've had great RPGs before, no doubt, but previous to now they've often been hamstrung by the limits of the technology available to them. Skyrim couldn't ever really be any more than it is without sacrificing other things, Bioware have openly said that they couldn't make the Dragon Age game they wanted with this gen tech and by the looks of Witcher 3, the same goes for CD Projekt. With the next gen rolling in soon, we can see just how much more RPGs can offer, complete open worlds with intricate side quests such as this. The variation and the detail on offer just couldn't be managed on such a great scale previously. Between this and Dragon Age we already have 2 contenders for 'holy jesus this is the f**king greatest shit I have ever played ever ever', and we still don't know what Bethesda are going to do next, the potential in Fallout now is incredible. Imagine a Fallout game where you play a Vault Dweller who is tasked with heading into the wastelands to acquire materials to keep the vault running, then once you are in the world, the game requires you to meet other wastelanders in other settlements and rather than just being a lone wolf accidentally saving the world, you end up having to make your own settlement throughout the story and the game is set up so you spend your time roaming and questing like always, but at all times you have to be mindful of your status in this world, if you side against a particular faction, they may attack your settlement for example. The potential for Fallout 4 to be a mix of previous Fallout games and State of Decay like need for resources plus management of a settlement and relationships with other survivors offers incredible diversity. I have no idea if it would ever happen, in fact, I highly doubt it will, but one thing I know is that this generation of consoles couldn't ever have offered that, not without sacrifices, but next gen offers the potential for all this to happen, for an open world Fallout game to not be entirely tied down to scripted quests, but a variable range of quests that spawn dependent on choices you make that aren't arbitrary but are natural and feel important to the player, "do you take these resources for yourself, upsetting your friends but benefiting your settlement, give them up knowing it could hurt your own settlement but help your friends when they need them or share them down the middle so neither side benefits but just maintain the status quo for a bit longer?" Imagine this quest mentioned in the article in this Fallout game, where the results go further than just 'what happens to village' but instead it directly impacts your world. If you side with the oldies, you then have a village that are friendly to you and offer regular supplies whereas if you'd killed the monster, you would earn some immediate caps, but the village is later abandoned meaning you get no benefit from it for your settlement. It's a fantastic prospect for an open world RPG the likes of which Bethesda excel at.
I don't know about anyone else, but for me, the prospect of what next gen can bring to RPG gaming is the most exciting, compelling part of this who new generation. I can't wait.
One. Warrior. Nation.