Fallout 4: Automatron DLC Review

Fallout 4 was all about building things. Well, not all, but whilst the rest of your adventures in the Commonwealth felt remarkably similar to those encountered in the post apocalyptic wasteland of Fallout 3’s Washington DC, base building was a completely new experience. Automatron takes that level of customisation and creativity and applies it to the  coolest thing on the planet: Robots.

This is the first of three DLC packages planned for Fallout 4 – and given that its predecessor’s DLC was unmatched in its day, we were keen to see what Automatron would offer. Although not a big addition, there is enough meat on the bones to make this DLC worthy of consideration.

The mysterious Mechanist has unleashed a horde of evil robots into the Commonwealth, including the devious Robobrain. Hunt them down and harvest their parts to build and mod your own custom robot companions. Choose from hundreds of mods; mixing limbs, armor, abilities, and weapons like the all-new lightning chain gun. Even customize their paint schemes and choose their voices!

The NPC star of Automatron is a robot named Ada. From the start it’s apparent she’s a little different from the Commonwealth’s other mechanical denizens. Upgraded by her owners, Ada has a personality chip making her a little more ‘human,’ with basic feelings and ideas. Less of a ‘yes sir’, more of a ‘we can’ robot.

Ada becomes your mechanical companion in your quest to stop the Mechanist’s march across the Commonwealth. She will be the first of many as you experiment with the new robot customisation mechanic, transforming Ada and her kin into veritable death machines. You’ll need to equip them with the defenses and weaponry needed to counter the threat of the Mechanist’s metal army.

There are a lot on new ‘bits’ added into Fallout to make this DLC, and robot customisation, work: new items, weapons, robots, places and characters are all included.

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Customising your own robots means killing and looting every robot you come across, harvesting their parts for the betterment of your own companions. Your creations are initially limited – our first creation (Automatron-620) presenting as the demented mashup of mini digger and crash test dummy. Robot Wars, here we come.

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Robot customisation is carried out on your newly-installed robot bench – which persists after the somewhat brief Automatron story has been completed, affording you the opportunity to make countless robotic variants. The most challenging part might be naming each of them!

Soon you will have a massed enough robot parts and general scrap to begin creating bigger and better robots – be warned however not all robots are as useful as they may seem. Our attempts at creating a larger robot which utilised sentry bot legs was only a partial success, as it had a tendency to get stuck in tight spaces, especially when it followed us indoors.

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Along with your own unique robots, there’s now a bunch of new ones to defeat – all spawning from the mind of the Mechanist. Gone are the usual overpowered Sentry Bots and the slow Protectrons; now you face robots that will rush you with all new weapons, including one with a nasty stun effect. If you get stunned with a few bots around you, you’re in a whole world of pain!

The DLC also includes new weapons and armor to combat this new breed of robotic terror – the Tesla Rifle and the Tesla Power Armor, names for noted physicist and futurist Nikola Tesla – and a new faction, The Rust Devils.

Although not terribly long or taxing, the DLC provided a few hours of story and some new mechanics with which to tinker. It also provided a few interesting bugs, but that’s (sadly) par for the course for a Bethesda offering.

Automatron costs £7.99 (UK) and is available from the Xbox Store.

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