Developer: Bethesda Softworks
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Release Date: November 10, 2015
Platform: PS4 (Reviewed), Xbox One, PC
Genre: Open-world RPG
Gamers have been waiting half a decade for a new Fallout game, and Bethesda has made up for the lost time with one of the most engaging and truly enjoyable open-world RPG's of all time. Rather than being a new iteration or sequel, Fallout 4 completely redefines the old formula with a complete overhaul that injects a staggering amount of content without changing familiar core concepts.
The progression system is both intuitive and expansive, and exceedingly well balanced. When I heard that traditional skills like Science and Repair would be absorbed into the new crafting system, I have to admit I was quite reticent: but Fallout 4 makes these changes feel so natural you don't even notice.
The new Perk system is absolutely massive. We'll go more in-depth on the Perks later on, but the general gist of the changes is that players now have a huge offering of endgame character development. You're not done filling out your character once you hit level 20 like you were in Fallout 3; with this new system you can just keep going and going and going as long as you want.
Other additions like environment crafting--yes, Fallout 4 literally gives you the tools to customize and create your very own bases and settlements--and item modding represent even more endgame customization to the fold. It's like Skyrim's enchant system only infinitely more expansive, making Fallout 4 feel like it already has mod support on day one. Other Skyrim favorites like cooking food and chems are on the menu, and you can even mix and match chems to make Buffjet and Psycho Jet.
In many ways, Fallout 4 feels like a doorway into a new dimension of post-apocalyptic survival. Everything has been enhanced, tweaked and perfected to add such depth to gameplay that you can easily shave off hours upon hours without even noticing. The building blocks are still intact, but Fallout 4 is to Fallout 3 as Legos are to Megablocks. The changes are obvious but exciting, bringing a genuine thrill to every new moment of exploration.
Players are engaged on such a level that there's authentic motivation to continue: you want to keep playing to discover everything that irradiated Boston has to offer, whether it's finding hidden items and loot, talking to quirky NPC's, taking on memorable quests or conquering the most fearsome Super Mutants around.
The FPS combat is really really strong this time around. With the help of id Software, Bethsoft has created a Fallout game that really does feel like a modern shooter. Adventuring in the wasteland is now pretty challenging and risky thanks to different grades of baddies, adding a true sense of danger to every single encounter. Power Armor helps mitigate these risks in a huge way, but we'll cover that in section three.
Right away the game instills a true and profound sense of awe that only compounds the more you play. A good portion of the awe is inspired by the majestic environments. Bethesda has made a ruined world look truly beautiful, and the environments are very much like living, breathing works of art. Atmospheric mist curls around the broken shattered streets of Boston while post-apocalyptic cities like Diamond City stand as gems throughout the chaos.
The other portion is from that distinct feeling of being on an epic scavenger hunt for amazing hidden treasures. I don't just mean loot, I'm talking about the entire picture: hilarious NPC's, amazingly tough baddies, synthetic Humphrey Bogart android detectives, human-robot marriages, Super Mutant companions, snowball-shooting superweapons, Power Armor suits with jetpack upgrades, and a whole galaxy of delicious sci-fi wonders. Fallout 4 not only brings that authentic Fallout feeling to the table, but it completely redefines the recipe for a delicious new meal you can chew on for years to come.
One thing console players will notice is that the graphics aren't so good. Fallout 4 does make use of great-looking lighting and atmospheric effects both indoors and out, but we noticed basic console graphics trade-offs like lack of detail on distant textures and a few graphical hiccups here and there. Overall things look great, but the PC experience conquers that of PS4 and Xbox One.
Although this review will dive deep into Fallout 4, the game is so massive that it still feels like we're barely scraping the surface. All those jokes about being able to spend thousands of hours in post-apocalyptic Boston are starting to look less like jokes and more like reality. Even Bethsoft has said that a single playthrough of Fallout 4 will last over 400 hours, and this is 100% true.
Now, fellow traveler, it's time to venture into the hazardous wastes of Boston. On our journey, we'll find treasures and terrors alike, and meet tons of unforgettable survivors. You have your Pip-Boy, right? Good. I hope you've brought lots and lots of ammo. You're going to need it.
Editor's Note: While we reviewed the PS4 version of Fallout 4 this time around, we'll be making a more direct push towards PC game reviews in the future. The PC version was sent to us a bit later than the console versions, and we had made a lot more headway on PS4. As a result, we stuck with PS4 to maintain progression.
As for the reports of considerable frame-rate drops on PS4, I personally didn't notice any real instances of substantial game-breaking lag. Overall the game feels smooth on all platforms, but you'll get the best experience on PC.
Gameplay - Key Changes, Perks, and Character Progression
Although Fallout 4's character system is quite different from Fallout 3, the basics are still there. Gunning down baddies earns EXP, as does picking locks, hacking terminals, completing quests and crafting item mods, chems or workshop additions.
That being said, Fallout 4 does issue some key changes to keep things quite fresh. Just about everything has been adjusted or downright overhauled, including Perks, stats, item mods, enemies, radiation, chems, dialogue, combat and even elemental affinities. We'll be going into more detail on the combat, items and crafting in the other sections.
Items except for Power Armor suits no longer need to be repaired. This is a huge weight off our collective shoulders, and I'm extremely relieved to see gear repairs have been cut. Given the huge dynamism of the game's crafting system, item repairs just don't fit.
Power Armor has changed in a big, big way. It's no longer treated as just another set of armor you equip; now it's more like a vehicle that you enter and exit at any time. Power Armor also runs on fuel in the form of fusion cores, and at first they'll be hard to find. By level 20 I had about 17 of them, but all in all you generally want to use your Power Armor more sparingly. I'll go into more detail about Power Armor in the items section.
Radiation is much more crippling this time around. Your RAD count actually temporarily knocks down your total active HP, acting as a pretty severe handicap in battle. The more radiation you rack up, the less and less total health you'll have, so RadAway is a total must. Or you can just pick up a Hazmat suit, or mod up your armor with active radiation resistance.
Radiation is much more commonplace in Fallout 4 and generally is treated in a much more realistic fashion. RADs aren't just accumulated from environments, but monsters as well. Super Mutants and Feral Ghouls will afflict you with radiation with strikes, adding even more danger to the mix. Sometimes wildlife will have a modifier called "glowing" which means they'll inflict radiation.
Dialogue is still basically the same but has been slightly tweaked in a very intuitive way. Instead of being locked into a closed off dialogue screen, you can break the dialogue simply by looking away from an NPC. This is super handy when danger is nearby, or when you need to swap out your Charisma-boosting gear to successfully persuade an NPC or get better barter prices. Sadly we've triggered a few glitches in the new dialogue system, so it's not always perfect.
On the raw character progression side, Fallout 4 makes some bold changes. Skills like Medicine, Small Guns, Heavy Guns, Energy Weapons and Repair have been scrapped. I know it sounds really strange, but honestly this is a welcome change and feels quite comfortable from the get-go.
SPECIAL stats are still intact and are basically the foundation for any character's abilities. Certain stats are much more important than others: this time around Agility has much more weight as it determines AP. Other than Agility, Charisma is much more useful for its persuasion opportunities as dialogue options open up very frequently.
Action Points are now tapped for an array of active abilities in Fallout 4, including sprinting, melee attacks with firearms, power attacks with melee weapons like sledgehammers, and V.A.T.S. targeting. When I started I only put 2 points into Agility thinking that I could get away with it...and throughout my adventures I've really felt it every time I run out of AP while sprinting, or try to melee attack a Ghoul only to realize I'm out of AP.
I also skimped out on Charisma with my character but quickly found that the stat is quite useful. Luckily you can find in-game items that boost your missing stats, so I was able to equip Reginald's Suit (3 CHR), a Formal Hat (1 CHR) and a pair of Black-Rim Glasses (1 CHR) to boost my Charisma up to 9.
If you've read our past coverage, you'll know that SPECIAL points are entwined with the new Perk system in a kind of grid formation. Think of the Perk chart as a parking garage: each level requires a certain stat ranking to access. To unlock a Perk on level four, you'll need to have the specific SPECIAL stat at level 4.
Most of the Perks can be leveled up multiple times to give extra bonuses. Typically the last tier of a given perk gives a substantial "Mastery" bonus for devastating efficiency. Fallout 4 has some pretty insane Perks too: be sure to take a close look at the tenth level Perks like Gun-Fu, Ricochet, and Four Leaf Clover. Mixing and matching some of these Perks gives players the chance to really annihilate their foes with strategic brilliance, adding a whole new dimension to Fallout gameplay.
A lot of these abilities like the crafting skills--Gun Nut, Science, and Chemist--as well as the terminal hacking and lockpicking skills are gated off behind level requirements. You'll find that Fallout 4 is really exceptionally balanced to make sure progression isn't too fast or too slow, ensuring gameplay can continue as long as you want.
Bethesda has done a fantastic job in making every Perk useful in its own way. Every single ability has an actual use that will come in handy in any given situation. You might turn away from the Pickpocket perk at first, but those opportunities to grab a quest item off an NPC pop up quite often. Also, consider the Lead Belly perk for the beginning, as you'll be slugging down irradiated water and chomping on rad roach meat to gain missing HP.
The Perks all reflect all the different kinds of characters players can create. There's a pretty substantial web of possibility here, from the sneaky ninja who uses silenced pistols to execute devastating criticals in VATS to the explosively loud machine-gun toting, Power Armor-wearing gunner. Or you can get up close and personal with a customized saw-bladed baseball bat and decapitate your foes with grisly precision--whatever your fancy, Fallout 4 gives you the tools to make your dream character.
These changes are absolutely amazing and considerably change the scope and replayability of the game. Even though I've played the game as much as possible since I received the review copy it still feels like I've barely scratched the surface of what Fallout 4 offers.
Combat and Enemies
Fallout 4's new fluid FPS mechanics are among the first new things you'll notice when you start playing. The gunplay has received a tremendous upgrade in every regard, arming players with a huge array of new weapons to choose from. Being able to aim down iron sights really does revolutionize Fallout's FPS dynamics, making every firefight feel authentically frenetic.
Every weapon from missile launchers to assault rifles and shotguns can be aimed via iron sights. That being said, some weapons don't have the greatest sights, and you can actually craft light-assist iron sights to improve accuracy. Or just slap a reflex sight, medium scope, or long-range sniper scope to your rifle.
Hip-fire is still preferable for enemies up close, and sometimes I find myself going into the third person for the pin-dot targeting reticle. Crouching also improves accuracy across all firearms, adding a nice bonus for those devastating sneaky headshots.
With iron sights and scope aiming, players now have a nice combination of methods to use outside of VATS-assisted targeting. If you have low Agility or AP like me, then you'll have to make up for it in other ways. I personally use my companion, Strong the Super Mutant, to smash enemies up close with Grognak's Axe while I blast baddies from a distance with a combat rifle.
While iron sight aiming is a great addition, it can be pretty terrible for a lot of the fast-movie enemies like Feral Ghouls, Mirelurks or even those pesky Bloatflies. It's sometimes hard to hit these enemies even when scoping. Bethesda doesn't have any aim-assist on so you'll need to perfect your aiming, and it's definitely easier to do on PC with a keyboard and mouse.
VATS also has a nice bonus with its new critical hit function. Every time you strike a blow on an enemy in VATS you fill up a critical meter, and when its full, you can unleash a devastating strike. This works on both melee and projectile weapons, of course. Some weapons--like the Righteous Authority laser rifle that Paladin Danse gives you as a quest reward--can actually improve the critical charge rate.
To offset the advantages gained from enhanced aiming, Fallout 4's enemies are now much more deadly. Any given encounter can smash you to smithereens if you aren't careful. I absolutely love how tough some battles can be...gone are the days being able to jump right into a group of Super Mutants and just smash them to bits without even losing half HP.
Take Feral Ghouls, for example. These undead crazies are straight out of 28 Days Later, tearing at your character while inflicting horrible radiation burns. The first few encounters are pretty scary to say the least, and actually invoke a true sense of gritty horror. Super Mutants are just as deadly, especially when they have rapid-fire weapons that ping and pepper away your HP. Sometimes they'll even have missile launchers that can quickly wreck your Power Armor.
Fallout 4 has "legendary" enemies that can drop randomized high-grade loot. There's a chance for one of these more powerful upgraded baddies to spawn in any given location, and they have a star in their name. I tested the drops for a legendary Ghoul and found that the base item type will remain the same, but the mods on the item can fluctuate.
Enemies also have a varying set of weaknesses and strengths against certain weapon types. Super Mutants, for example, are immune to radiation. The four main affinities are ballistic, fire, cold, poison, energy and radiation. Synths are strong against energy weapons but are weak against fire. The game has a perk for identifying weaknesses and immunities, and I highly suggest you pick it up.
Let's talk about Deathclaws for a bit. These monsters are going to give you a hard time, and rightly so: Deathclaws are basically the bosses of the wasteland. You'll encounter them sparingly in the irradiated wilderness, but when you do, you'll need to load up on chems and bust out your Fat Man to dish out some serious hurt. These ferocious monstrosities will slash you up and chomp on your guts in no time flat, and I honestly love every minute of it. Even no Normal difficulty these baddies are a serious challenge.
Assaultrons, a new cross between synthetic android and a Mr. Gutsy, are also pretty deadly. These baddies can actually kill you in a single hit with their terrible face-laser attack. As you level up and get stronger, so do enemies, and they will start to drop higher level loot as well. This means every encounter proves to be stimulating and difficult, making sure players keep their wits and skills about them at all times.
Crafting, Items, and Workshops
Fallout 4's crafting system might be the most ambitious of its kind, at least in recent memory. One of my biggest gripes about Fallout 3 and Skyrim was all the extra junk that had absolutely no use. Remember all those frying pans, hot plates and miscellaneous knick-knacks you'd find in the Capital Wasteland? Yeah, all of those things have been transformed from crap into scrap.
Everything in Fallout 4 can be scrapped for raw materials. Everything. It actually gets to the point where you'll be madly scrambling through garbage bins looking for aluminum cans or beer bottles to break down for glass, or lightbulbs to smash for copper wire all so you can build up a new turret or string up wires to power your settlement. You can also bust down useless armor and weapons to fuel weapon mod upgrades, which add even more customization to character progression.
Weapon modifications represent one of the most revolutionary leaps forward in Fallout 4. Players can now completely customize their loadout as they see fit, transforming an everyday pipe rifle into an insane skull-smashing monster. The fun really starts when you start upgrading legendary-grade weapons earned from special monsters and quests.
The weapon mods are much more dynamic than just scopes and ammo tweaks. Players can change up the stocks, frames, barrels, scopes and muzzles on every weapon in the game. That being said, every gun is different, and some offer more customization options than others. The mods are extremely balanced, adding and taking away in the same stroke.
A lot of different things come into play when customizing a gun: build type, Perk setup, function and specific trade-offs. For example, sniper barrels have increased damage and accuracy but offer poor hip-fire and melee attacks.
When you find that perfect combination of mods on a specific weapon, it becomes extremely satisfying every time you use it. Slapping a reflex sight on an automatic rifle injects a feel of Call of Duty to every firefight, and adjusting a missile launcher to fire four explosive missiles at a time is just amazing. Getting headshots with a high-powered sniper rifle is just as satisfying, or maybe capping down a baddie from the shadows with a silenced pistol for 3x sneak damage. You can tailor-make every single one of your guns--or skull-bashing sledgehammers--to fit your playstyle.
Armor modding is conceptually similar to weapon modding, but in many ways it's better. You can get really strategic with your armor mods, tailoring them to any given situation by infusing elemental resistances. Let's say you're going to fight a band of marauding Super Mutants. You want to fire up your forge and craft some armor that's high in raw defense with a tinge of radiation resistance.
Maybe there's a huge army of synths just waiting to zap you into dust. In this case, you'd want to smelt a full set of gear that has high energy resistance. For those scavenging trips out into the wasteland, you can take advantage of the Pocketed or Deep Pocketed mods--my personal favorites--to increase your carrying capacity.
Power Armor can be customized for endgame mastery. To get high-tier Power Armor you'll need to level up your Armorer and Science perks a fair ways, but ultimately this will be a tremendous boon for late-game havoc-wreaking. One of the best things about Power Armor--including the massive boost to defense, radiation, and energy resistances--is that it stacks with the armor set you're currently wearing. You can jump into a suit of Power Armor fully decked out in stat-boosting gear to gain some huge bonuses.
Bethesda has given players the tools to create endless combinations and possibilities with their armor and weapons. To keep things balanced, the devs have locked the more powerful modifications behind the Gun Nut and Science Perk trees for weapons and the Armorer tree for armors. Melee weapons are gated behind the Blacksmith tier. Leveling these Perks up is a must for any adventurer.
In some ways, this new "scrap anything" system is cumbersome and is a huge distraction. A lot of the time I find myself meticulously scavenging every area for scrap that I might need later on. If I get too full, I just lighten the burden and offload a couple hundred pounds of junk on my companion. On one level, it's a fantastic addition that means there's a use for every single item, but on a different level, the system turns everyone into crazed scavengers.
The raw scrapped materials are used for every kind of crafting: weapon mods, armor mods, workshop/settlement crafting, and chem stations. There's also cooking, which combines ingredients like meats carved from Ragstag Does and Yao Guai as well as carrots and corn.
Would-be survivalists would do well to make active use of chems. As with weapons and armor, Bethsoft lets users create their very own stat-boosting chems. Sure they can be risky and addictive, but chemists can brew up some insane bonuses by crossing chems to make Buffjet, Psychojet, and other insane combos. You can also craft the extremely necessary Stimpaks and RadAway.
Everyone needs a home in the wasteland. Fallout 3 gave us miscellaneous homes in various towns like Megaton, but Fallout 4 gives you an entire settlement to shape and mold as you see fit. These settlements can grow into towns and then evolve into cities over time and careful curation.
The workshop system is the heart of any settlement. Raw scrapped materials like wood, steel and various grades of copper, aluminum and ceramic are used to create walls, structures, floors, ceilings and everything else. The real key to any settlement, though, is people.
In the workshop, Fallout 4 takes on a kind of RTS/tower defense scope with Minecraft-level customization. As you build and fortify your village people will come in, and you have to play Overseer for a growing populace. That means consistent food, water, shelter, and defense. Denizens can be assigned to various tasks from guard duty to corn-picking, but it's always your job to make sure their needs are met.
When your settlement gets too big, Raiders will actually attempt to raze your hard-earned village. Setting up traps and gun turrets are vital to the safety of your people, and you're given total freedom on what to build and how to assign roles to your townspeople.
Quests and NPCs
I found myself really digging Fallout 4's quest lines, largely due to the rather amusing NPCs. Bethesda is quite famous for its ability to inject humor, whimsy, and plain bizarre behavior into its games using non-player characters.
In this respect Fallout 4 not only delivers but steps things up quite a bit. The quests are so widely different and generally take you to the very ends of the Commonwealth and back. NPCs are a refreshing patchwork of flavor that really make the game come to life, making it more of an experience and less of a grindy RPG.
Throughout my adventures, I came across dozens of memorable characters, but some of my favorites reside in Diamond City (aka the "jewel" of Boston). Take the schoolteacher Mr. Zwicky, for example. Old Mr. Zwicky is a lonely man without a wife, but he happens to have a female Mr. Handy named Edna to help teach the class. Mr. Zwicky and Edna are...well..." close". Actually, they're in love, and I was able to help convince Edna to pledge her love for the teacher, which led to the two getting married. Only in Fallout, folks.
Then there's Nick Valentine. Nick is a synthetic android with a total 1950's Humphrey Bogart detective style. Valentine makes a living solving cases just like an old-fashioned gumshoe, and sports a classic trenchcoat and fedora to boot. Diamond City might be decidedly synth-phobic, but they know and love Valentine for all his good deeds.
Moving a bit East we see the town of Goodneighbor. This is a city of misfits, a place where all the flotsam and jetsam of the Commonwealth end up to eke out a living. There's tons of hilarious NPCs here, all with their own quirks and style. We have Whitechapel Charlie, the British Mr. Handy bartender in a rundown dive called the Third Rail. Then there's K-L-E-O, a female Assaultron, who sells some serious firepower. Irma runs the Memory Den, a VR-like sleaze pit that let's you revisit your old memories... for a price.
Quest opportunities will spring up like weeds, and many times are triggered by certain events or visiting certain locations. In one memorable quest, I dressed up as the infamous Silver Shroud comic book hero and dished out justice to ne'er-do-wells in Goodneighbor. In another quest line I helped re-establish the Minutemen, a faction of NPCs inspired by the Colonial Era that spreads help and goodwill throughout the Commonwealth. And at one point I swear I saw a UFO fly overhead and crash to the ground...
Fallout 4 also has a ton of factions all vying for control over irradiated Boston. These include the fanatical plasma pistol-toting Children of Atom cult, the iconic (yet ruthless) Brotherhood of Steel, the synths at the shadowy Institute, raiders and scavvers, bloodthirsty Super Mutants and miscellaneous gangs like the Gunners. Most of these will gun you down on sight and have their own distinct code of ethics. Unfortunately, it doesn't look like you can join up with raiders or nefarious groups, and I'm not sure there's any real way to be "bad" in the game.
Even after six pages of content, it still feels hard to condense a huge game like Fallout 4 in a review. The experience can be so vastly different for every player. Bethesda has created a game that really transcends the trappings and boundaries of normal RPG's to create something really unique and special this time around. A journey in the Commonwealth can just keep going and going and going, continuing to take shape long after the game's beaten.
If the game is this massive on its own, we can only imagine what kind of expansions that user-created mods will bring. It's kind of like comparing a galaxy to a universe; once mods are introduced Fallout 4 will jump to a universal status with a near infinite amount of playtime on tap.
I personally have thoroughly enjoyed every moment spent in the Commonwealth. Fallout 4 does have its tedious moments--especially when you're scrapping everything in sight to fuel your crazed mats addiction--but these moments are more user-dependent than anything. If you don't want to scrap items or waste time picking everything up, then you don't have to. It's all up to you. Fallout is all about player choice, it's all about freedom, and Fallout 4 pushes that concept to the limit and beyond.
The game's character progression is designed to carry players well beyond end-game, complimented with the high-grade weapon and armor modifications. Being able to mix and match mods on gear sets is a huge boon for every Fallout fan, who can now customize every facet of their overall experience. Power Armor is deliciously effective but is perfectly balanced, so it's not exploitative, but it's oh-so-satisfying to use.
We also have to mention the game's atmospheric effects and dynamic weather systems. Day to night rolls by seamlessly to immerse players in a digital world, complimented with early morning fog and beautiful fiery sunsets that ignite the coastal waters in crimson.
Not all of the weather is beautiful, though; in a world ravaged by radiation, it's only natural to have freak atomic storms. These storms cast a sickly yellow-green light across the world, with cruel lightning strikes and tainted acid rain that inflicts radiation. It's completely enchanting watching the Earth cycle poison from 200 years past, and every time I see a storm I always wade in the eerie chaos.
One of my favorite features of Fallout 4 has to be the settlement creation system. Every time I go back to my home base at Sanctuary I'm overcome with pride at the place I've created for myself. Properly curating and maintaining a settlement does wonders for your experience, and I actually find myself equipping all the denizens with high-defense gear and weapons to boot. I fully look forward to creating a massive metropolis one day, complete with floating houses and walkways that stretch into the sky.
All of these things come together to make Bethesda's new post-apocalyptic venture one of the most memorable and amazing games of the year. When it comes to overall value and replayability, Fallout 4 is up there with The Witcher 3 regarding scope and gameplay. It's the kind of game that keeps on giving the more you play it and is earnestly worth the effort.
Weapon and armor crafting: Bethsoft gives players the tools to make their own specific armor sets and gear, adding scopes, frames, muzzles and barrels to a huge assortment of weapons for full customization.
Huge map to explore: Post-apocalyptic Boston is pretty huge, and there's tons of treasures and quests to find throughout your adventures.
Overhauled Perk system: Perks are incredibly dynamic and designed to compliment certain builds, with every single ability having key uses.
Creating settlements and bases: Being able to piece physically together your own home base is an extraordinary experience, especially since Bethesda gives you a ton of different construction pieces to work with. You can even make whole buildings and platforms float in the air--I have a bunch of floating defense turrets set in enclosures.
Fluid FPS combat system: The shooter mechanics are quite adept thanks to a few additions like iron sights aiming and refined scopes. Even with reflex scopes and quick-aiming it can be hard to hit faster enemies outside of VATS, and I'd still like to see a close-quarters roll maneuver to boot. Even still the FPS system feels just like a modern shooter and adds a new level of fun and challenge to the game.
Graphics: Since Fallout 4 has such a staggering amount of content it gets a pass for its graphics. On Xbox One and PS4 the graphics are definitely more noticeable, with the Xbox One having a few issues here and there, but both consoles have problems with distance shadows and detail.
Loading times: We know all of those textures and renders take a while to prepare, so again this is understandable with a game like Fallout. But you will start to notice the load times, especially with loading your saves at the main screen.