Anyone who's familiar with the Fallout franchise, from its isometric beginnings to its current 76-form, knows it's a complicated one. Nevertheless, true fans feared that the Fallout we knew was done for until Obsidian rode in on a white horse.
Many younger fans seem to have this perception of Bethesda being the company behind Fallout. While this is true when it comes to IP ownership, it's Obsidian and its key personnel who are the real Fallout guys, and the franchise's creators are among their ranks.
We won't be going into the long history behind Fallout ownership, but let's just say that Fallout: New Vegas was no fluke. Unfortunately for Bethesda, it was a fan favourite and it set the bar for what a Fallout experience should feel and play like.
Fast forward many years later, and Bethesda was yet to reach those heights, and the launch of Fallout 76 made that painfully clear. Apologies to those who think it's awesome and still have the time for it, but it was literally the Fallout nobody asked for or wanted. Heck, this was barely Fallout.
Thankfully, Obsidian saw their opening and credit to them, because developing a singleplayer RPG in the time when live-service games are the norm was no small feat. Doing it with a completely new IP in The Outer Worlds - doubly so.
Could they do it again? Could they even do it without the rich tapestry that Fallout's years of storytelling provided? Do these guys still have their mojo? And the answer to each of these was - damn straight!
The Outer Worlds didn't even care for being launched close to Call of Duty: Modern Warfare, which for most games means commercial suicide - it was out of this world.
The writing was top-notch and the exploration of what-ifs of hard-core capitalism on the outer reaches was just splendid. Obsidian delivered a cast of colourful characters that can readily rival any that Fallout produced, and it did so in a technically superior package.
Whether it's the dialogue, the missions, the world, the companions or whatever else - The Outer Worlds turned out to be not only the spiritual successor to Fallout - it should've been called its spiritual preferred destination.
Fallout 76's launch may have caused us to lament the franchise's direction and long for the days of old, but Obsidian didn't take long to set us back on track, albeit with a few changes.
Knowing that it exceeded the dev's expectations, it's safe to assume there will be more. Which is awesome, because who doesn't want more Fall....excuse me, more of The Outer Worlds' experience.