While the recently announced Fallout 76 might be diverging from series standards, it looks like fans of traditional dialogue and roleplaying-heavy Fallout adventures won't be entirely left out this year. Originally announced in 2010 as Project Brazil, Fallout: New California is effectively a whole new Fallout game built on top of the New Vegas engine by modding crew Radian-Helix Media, and it's due for release on October 23rd. Within, a quite dramatic announcement trailer featuring some decent enough amateur voice-work and a whole lot of shooting.
Right now, the main quest of Fallout: New California is finished - present, correct and playable from beginning to end. The developers will be looking for beta testers soon to help work out any kinks before the final release, as well as help them flesh out the mod with some side-quests. Apparently the branching main story (replete with 16,000 lines of dialogue, so say Radian-Helix) isn't quite enough, so they're aiming just that little bit higher. They also hope to squeeze in tweaks before launch so that less beefy PCs can run everything smoothly.
Considering the limits of the engine they're working with, that trailer is genuinely impressive when stacked up against the original one for Fallout: New Vegas, featuring detailed environments and some impressively big battles. I do hope that New California is compatible with my gameplay mod of choice - Project Nevada - however, as I don't think I can comfortably return to New Vegas's gunplay without the slew of enhancements it brings.
The initial release of the mod will be under the 'Beta 2.0' banner, but it should be feature-complete at the time - presumably Radian-Helix are just hedging their bets and waiting until the swarm of eager new players have tripped off any bug-related landmines before putting a neat Version 1.0 bow on the project. Plus, don't forget the other mega-scale mod for New Vegas - Fallout: The Frontier - released a new trailer in time for E3 last year, so hopefully we'll get to see some more of that too in the next few weeks.
Fallout: New California will be landing on October 23rd, and will require Fallout: New Vegas to play. You can keep an eye on the project on its ModDB page here. Beta sign-ups should be opening up sometime this July.