Minor spoilers for the main, Shaun-finding plot
Got out of the vault, then some settlement crap, then decided to go talk to Nick (did I do that too fast?) and got the whole “Show that to the dog” bit, and was surprised when the dog showed up (even though you mentioned he would) and then, of course, off he went, which took more time than I had, so I got to the bit where some half dead robot said some stuff and hit save.
First, this isn’t too big a step ahead, right? Still lots to go after this?
Second, so in Skyrim, the only, paltry themes were in the main quest. Here? I’m….not seeing them yet. I’ll chill, and wait, but I feel I moved story along and…for what?
I think a problem is the extended exposition in the main quest. Valentine’s cool, but I’m meeting him like 60 damn hours into the game, and, what, four story missions in? Five? And he seems to be a key player in the story.
If you’re going to give the player in a bigassed open world game enough free rein to go spend 50 or so hours doing whatever, you gotta get the exposition out of the way fast. Look at TW3. Sure, there were characters that popped up later, but we met Vesimir, Yen, Ciri, The Emperor and the Hunt dude in the first half hour. We heard about Triss in the next half hour. Imagine if, in TW3, we hadn’t even heard of Yen, say, until hour 62. That wouldn’t have been good. And that’s what I’m feeling happened in FO4 last night.
Oh, dude, there’s way much more. I pretty much talked to Nick immediately after getting him out of the vault too, and followed up on that, and…I’ve barely advanced the story. It will come around to involve other things that I’ve also barely begun to investigate.
I don’t know about themes, but the plot stretches onward. I agree that your being able to avoid the ‘main’ plot this way for 700 hours does diminish it in importance compared to the more cohesive narrative of TW3. But that’s the risk when you have 8,000 things to magpie and no real push forward. Other than your parental interest in finding out what happened to your son, and, well, turns out maybe that’s not the kind of push one would think when compared with hauling loads of desk fans to settlements.