The original Fallout games show their age – but newer fans should still give them a shot

In the wake of the excellent Fallout TV adaptation, everybody is talking about the resurgence now being enjoyed by the Fallout video games. Fallout 4, 3, 76, and New Vegas have all vaulted into the top sellers on Xbox. On Steam, Fallout 4 has squeaked its way into the top concurrently-played games on the platform – putting it up there with multiplayer mainstays like Team Fortress 2, Destiny, and Rainbow Six Siege – and alongside hot new games like Helldivers 2. It’s an impressive summit.

But do you know which Fallout game has enjoyed the highest month-on-month percentage increase, at least according to Steam Charts? That’s the very first game in the series, 1997’s Fallout: A Post Nuclear Role Playing Game. Sure, there are significantly less people playing that game than most of the others, but whereas Fallout 4’s player base has jumped by a little over 50% since the show launched, the first game’s player base has jumped by 160%.

This stat speaks to a truth about Fallout as a series; many people only encountered it with 2008’s Fallout 3, and few decided to go back to play the games that started it all. Folk can hardly be blamed for this – they are different sorts of games, deeply old-school and traditional, and by no means guaranteed to click for people who fell in love with the series in its shootery, VATS-powered Bethesda Game Studios iteration. With that said, I’m thrilled to see the original games getting a bit more attention, even if it’s only a couple of thousand people returning to Fallout and Fallout 2 at any given time.

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