Fallout 4 is a post-apocalyptic open-world action-adventure game that can be played in first and third person. You play as a survivor exploring the ruins of Boston after a nuclear holocaust.
Pro Solid gunplay with an interesting twist
The gunplay plays so well it almost feels like a pure FPS. You can shoot from the hip, aim down the sights/scope, or even just run and gun. However, what makes Fallout 4 stand out is VATS (Vault-Tec Assisted Targeting System). When you activate VATS, the time slows down to a crawl, allowing you to mark body parts of enemies. When you execute it your character will automatically shoot the marked body parts. This is very useful for getting out of tight spots, allowing you to instantly clear groups of enemies or kill a really tough enemy charging at you. It also has the benefit of making you feel like an expert gunman, even if your aim isn't that great.
Pro Addictive to collect loot
You can pick up most of the stuff you see laying around in Fallout 4. Every item, including weapons and armors, can be broken down into reusable crafting materials. This makes it hard to stop yourself from going around and collecting everything in sight because everything has a purpose.
You can also find unique versions of equipment on the corpses of legendary enemies. Each of these items has an additional effect such as speed boost or extra damage. This may cause you to constantly pick fights you'll probably lose, but it's worth it once you get your hands on that extremely good piece of equipment.
Pro Deep perk/skill system
Fallout 4 has a great selection of perks centered on surviving in the wasteland. You'll gain a point each time you level up, allowing you to select one of the perks. The perks can give you an increase to your sneaking ability, improve your lockpicking skills, or even add unique effects such as causing bullets fired by enemies to ricochet back and killing them. There's easily enough variation to make multiple playthroughs feel fresh and exciting. To make it even better, if you don't like multiple playthroughs, you can just unlock every single perk on a single character, albeit with a much longer playtime.
Pro Diverse enemy types keep the gameplay exciting
There a lot of different enemies found in the game such as super mutants, feral ghouls, robots, mutated wildlife, and many others. All of them have their unique behaviors, strengths, and weaknesses.
For example, robots often use heavy weaponry such as rocket launchers and lasers, making it really hard to deal with them. Fortunately enough, they're very vulnerable to EMP grenades and can also be hacked.
Another example are the feral ghouls that will almost always charge at you. They can surround you really fast, clawing away at your health and affecting you with radiation, but they lack any intelligence. So if you plant mines infront of you and attract them with gunshots, they'll lose their legs in the minefield, leaving them at your mercy.
The various enemy types and methods you can fight them with keeps the gameplay fresh for a long time.
Pro Companions can help make the game a little easier
There are a bunch of companions to find in the game, starting with Dogmeat, the dog. Each companion has their own skills that can help you. For example, Dogmeat can dig up hidden items and bring them to you. They can also distract the enemy, causing the combat to be a little easier since all the attention won't be on just you. The only real downside is that you can only use one companion at a time, but you can easily swap them out. Using a companion is not mandatory either, so if you prefer the added challenge you can travel without a companion.
Pro Great storyline
The main story has a very personal theme of family and revenge, featuring a main character looking for their lost son in a post-apocalyptic version of Boston. The side-quests also provide a decent backdrop, expanding on some of the plot elements of the main story. There are many twists and mysteries, but the narrative remains coherent throughout the story, creating a very enjoyable experience.
Pro Addicting building mechanic
One of the more interesting parts of managing your settlement is the house building aspect. There are various preset houses you can put down quickly, but you can make large structures entirely from scratch, starting with the foundation and ending with the roof of a 10 story building. While there are some constraints such as limited building area, you can really let your imagination loose, allowing you to spend countless hours on it.
Pro You can adjust equipment to suit your playstyle
In Fallout 4 you have a lot of options when modifying your equipment, giving you a chance to make equipment that matches your playstyle.
You can take an assault rifle and change most of its parts. Each part you can change has an upside and a downside to it. For example, adding a long range scope would make the rifle useless in close quarters, but it would be great for pick off targets from afar.
You can also tailor your armors for various situations. You can lower the weight or add pockets to make carrying loot easier. Or you can add additional linings or padding to gain increased protection against various hazards such as radiation.
Pro Interesting settlement management
In Fallout 4 you can set up thriving communities in various locations. You'll have to provide the settlers with housing, bedding, water, food, and protection. Over time you'll be able to establish trade routes between the settlements and expand into an empire spanning the entire territory of Fallout 4. This really gives it the feeling like you're trying to rebuild society, which is a welcome change in a post-apocalyptic game.
Con Pipboy UI feels unpleasant to use
When you open your Pipboy (a personal computer that manages your quests, inventory, character data, etc) the screen containing the useful information only covers about a fourth of the entire screen. As a result some of the elements are too crammed, requiring a lot of scrolling. This can be really annoying if you're trying to find something in a list of 100 items.
Con The dialogue choices are confusing
Most of the dialogue choices will only show a few words that don't actually reflect what your character is gonna say. This creates a disconnect between you and your character, making it seem like you don't control what your character is gonna say at any point.