Fallout: New Vegas – Lonesome Road DLC

 

Review by · October 1, 2011

Fallout: New Vegas’ latest DLC, Lonesome Road, continues a tradition of impressive add-on content for the franchise. At its core, Lonesome Road supplies everything that has become standard with Fallout DLC: fun weapons to play with, new enemies to defeat, and new characters to interact with. Lonesome Road takes this a step further, however, by providing a serious narrative that ties into New Vegas’ main storyline and provides much needed background on the Courier character. It also finally lets you meet the elusive Ulysses, a character that has been referenced multiple times before this release. Lonesome Road’s story is not for the faint of heart, however, and does away with much of the humor that has often been tied in with Fallout’s post-apocalyptic universe. As you walk through the barren new Divide zone, you’re presented with dialogue regarding the history of America and conflicts both old and new, as well as reflections on the choices you have made as a courier in the Mojave Wasteland. Though some of this dialogue comes across as a bit too cryptic at times, especially coming from Ulysses (one of the only characters you interact with during the DLC), it ties together well enough in the end to create a satisfying experience.

Unfortunately, the strong narrative I just praised also detracts from the add-on: Lonesome Road is entirely linear and more akin to Fallout 3’s Operation Anchorage than Point Lookout, for example. There are few places of interest to explore outside the main path and no sidequests at all. This makes the experience relatively short and, while you may go back to sniff out all the available upgrades, such as those for Lonesome Road’s signature Red Glare rocket launcher, it’s still a very compact experience that can be completed in one or two sittings.

Luckily, Lonesome Road is fairly challenging, and the game explicitly tells you that it’s recommended for characters level 25 and beyond. Seeing as how most people playing Lonesome Road will likely have played some or all of the previous New Vegas add-ons, this is perfectly sensible and helps extend the length of the add-on by forcing you to ponder strategies for certain groups of enemies and prepare the right weapons and skills for the job. Unlike the New Vegas main game, you aren’t able to speak, barter, hack, or lock pick your way out of many of Lonesome Road’s challenges (like staring down two deathclaws), so hopefully your skill in combat is up to snuff. You do get a companion to assist you, however: another Ed-E model for whom you can find various upgrades throughout the Divide.

Despite being short and linear, Lonesome Road delivers a solid experience for diehard Fallout fans and casual fans alike. The narrative spurs you on to continue walking the Divide in search of answers about who you were before the events of New Vegas and who your choices will eventually force you to become.


Pros

Serious narrative that rounds out the New Vegas story, interesting new weapons and enemies, challenging.

Cons

Linear with few places to explore, no sidequests.

Bottom Line

Solid, though brief, piece of DLC that sets itself apart with its strong though compact story.

Overall

Positive
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Joe Czop

Joe Czop

Joe rejoined RPGFan in 2019 as a Reviews Contributor. He has experience with a wide variety of game genres, reads board game rule books for fun, and has 2 Velvet Room attendants in the form of his two guinea pigs, Elizabeth and Margaret. He has also watched anime in the amount of about 5 months run time and counting. Still a proud member of the SOS Brigade!