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The Earth Still Burns: Wasteland 1 Re-Released At Last

War never changes but sometimes upscales

On the day that the great Rumour Dance begins throwing initial shapes about a possible Fallout 4, it seems appropriate to also herald the re-release of the original Wasteland, the proto-Fallout. InXile, currently working on Wasteland 2 and Torment: Tides of Mahnamahna, have been trying to wrangle download store rights to the 1988 Interplay RPG for some time, and a couple of days ago their plans bore post-apocalyptic fruit. An enhanced edition of the game's now available from the usual suspects, and apparently this is its first official availability for two decades.

'What's new?', I can't hear you ask, because I'm a man sat alone at a keyboard, but I can provide an answer anyway. Primarily, it's that the old dear won't grumble at modern Windowses, and even supports a few new resolutions via upscaling trickery. Looking at the screenshot above, I'm not entirely convinced the optional smoothing effect is a good idea, however. The font's a bit blurry, and the characters look a bit Windows Paint, rather than lovely, chunky old pixels.

On top of that are some new bits of text, voiceover and music, and the option to have Brian Fargo personally drop a nuclear warhead on your home town in order to add to the game's atmosphere.

The game's available on Steam and GoG for $6/£4.49, but if you helped Kickstart Wasteland 2 you should have a free copy of Wasteland 1 already. Here's the plot summary, not that one is really needed for such an archetype of a setting:

The year is 2087, eighty-nine years after an all out nuclear war between the United States and the Soviet Union turned vast swaths of the Earth into a hellish wasteland where survival is a daily struggle against thirst, hunger, radiation sickness, ravaging raiders, and mutants - always mutants. You are a Desert Ranger, one of a band of stalwart lawmen born from the remnants of a U.S. Army detachment who survived the nuclear holocaust by holing up in a maximum security prison. You may wear ragtag uniforms and carry make-shift weapons, but the Desert Rangers are the only law left in what was once the American southwest.

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Alec Meer avatar

Alec Meer


Ancient co-founder of RPS. Long gone. Now mostly writes for rather than about videogames.

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