My Experiences with Wasteland 2: Director's Cut On Linux
Written by Eric Griffith in Linux Gaming on 16 January 2016. Page 1 of 2. 17 Comments

Wasteland 2: DC is not a "new game", its been available on Linux since October. But I wanted to call attention to it, partially due to problems I had running it, and partially due to my rather lackluster impression from Fallout 4.

Testing was done on Fedora 23 with Linux kernel 4.2.8, Mesa 11.1, with both the Intel and RadeonSI Drivers, using the latest GOG version of the game.

The Review:

The "who?" The Desert Rangers. The "where?" Post-Apocolyptic Arizona. The "when?" The year 2102.

Wasteland 2 takes place in a world set ablaze by a nuclear holocaust in 1998, due to misunderstanding between the world's superpowers. You are a member of the Desert Rangers-- an group of former US military personnel trying to keep the peace in the radioactive desert of Arizona. Your story begins by attempting to uncover the details surrounding the violent death of one of the Ranger's best. What happens after that, and how your squad changes the Wasteland, is ultimately up to you.

Wasteland 2 is a throw back to the older days of RPG's. It's top down perspective, thankfully in beautifully rendered 3D. Your party is comprised of four to seven people-- four you create yourself, or use pre-generated ones, and up to three NPC's that you find in the world. A note from one player to another: play the game a little with the default squad, just so you learn how the game plays, and then go back and make your own characters-- you will do much better.

Each character you create all have access to the same pool of skills and abilities, allowing you to designate them all as jacks-of-all-trades, or create specialists within a small subset of skills. Need a smooth talker? Invest in the skills Smart Ass, Hard Ass, and Kiss Ass, pair those with a high Charisma score and he'll start talking his way through anything. Need a soldier leading your squad into battle? Invest in the Leadership ability for one squad member and watch your squad's accuracy and morale jump considerably. Need to sneak into a place? Designate someone as your scout and start pumping point into his perception, demolitions, lockpicking, and computer science skills-- with those he'll be able to get past most technological defenses.

Some skills, a select few, are restricted to specific NPC's. What those skills do, and who has them, is left for the player to discover. I should note however, that the NPC's you pick up along the way are not lifeless faces, they have stories and personality's all their own, and the decisions you make might sour their opinion of you. Sour their opinion enough, such as by accidentally digging up the grave of the wife of the hobo you just recruited, and they might just blast you in the back with their shotgun.

Anyone who has played tabletop games, such as D&D, will feel right at home during combat. The combat is turn based, and the order depends upon the initiative scores of the individual squad members & enemies. Whenever it is that squadmate's turn, he has allotment to a certain amount of Action Points to spend. Crouching, or standing up from crouch, usually consumes 2 action points, while reloading might cost three. Shooting a gun could cost you anywhere between 3 and 9 points, depending on the gun being fired. How many action points your squad gets is determined by their ability scores. Movement during combat is done on a tile-based grid system, and yes, moving consumes valuable action points.



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