The Fallout 4 patch 1.3 is now available to the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 bringing new features and bug fixes to a game that was in desperate need of them.
For months, Fallout 4 owners have been complaining about a number of problems with the game. From broken quests to performance issues to irritating bugs, Fallout 4 problems have piled up on Xbox One, PS4 and PC.
In late December, Bethesda addressed some of these concerns with its 1.2 patch. The Fallout 4 1.2 patch alleviated many problems but it also left some lingering issues and caused new problems for many gamers.
In January, Bethesda responded again with a 1.3 patch. Earlier this month, the company took it out of beta bringing a laundry list of bug fixes for Fallout 4 problems and some new features including improvements to the game’s graphics and physics.
Earlier this month, Bethesda rolled out a similar patch to the Xbox One and PS4. The Fallout 1.3 patch is here for console and I, like many of you, downloaded it and installed it on my platform of choice: Xbox One.
I’ve spent over 30 real-time hours with the Fallout 4 1.3 patch for Xbox One and I want to run down my initial impressions of the update including the installation, some problems, and some things that’ve impressed me so far.
Fallout 4 Patch 1.3 Installation
I have the Instant On featured turned on on my Xbox One so my update was already waiting for me when I logged in to play Fallout 4 early this morning. As I’ve noted, Instant On will save you a ton of time.
The Xbox One’s Fallout 4 1.3 patch is 529MB in size. I own a 2TB external hard drive so that’s not a problem for me. It might be a problem for you if you’re running out of space on your Xbox One or external so keep that in mind when you fire up Fallout 4 to download 1.3 and play.
From what I’m hearing, the update takes just a few minutes to download and install over a fast Wi-Fi connection. I’d set aside 15 minutes to monitor the download and installation, more if you’re on a slow connection.
It might be smart to plug an ethernet cable into the Xbox One (or PS4) if you can manage. It could speed up the process.
Saves Still Work
I’ve encountered corrupted Fallout 4 saves on the Xbox One but I haven’t run into any problems on 1.3. Not yet at least.
Patch 1.3 Performance
Fallout 4’s performance on 1.2 left me wanting more. I experienced frame rate issues in a number of different places including Vault 81, Diamond City Market, and the Financial District. On 1.2, I also experienced slow down every time a Vertibird appeared overhead.
I’ve been using the 1.3 patch for about 30 hours now but I haven’t been able to check every single location in the game. Sorry.
That said, I’ve been able to spend some quality time in some of the more problematic spots and I’ve seen some noticeable improvements. I’ve also encountered some of the same sluggishness and slow down I saw in 1.2.
(For the record, I have Fallout 4 installed on a fast external hard drive.)
It’s still early so I don’t want to rush to judgement yet but the 1.3 patch appears to have helped with the frame rate in key areas.
Vault 81, Corvega and Diamond City Market were all very fluid during my time spent there. I noticed a bit of drag in the chaotic Financial District but it also felt a little smoother than 1.2.
I’ve encountered tons of Vertibirds overhead and each time I’ve run into a bit of lag. The instances weren’t as bad as they were in 1.2 but the game still hiccuped. It’s not a experience-breaking issues but it’s pretty annoying.
I’ve also noticed lag during radiation storms. I’ve encountered 10 or so during my time with the 1.3 patch and I’ve had to endure hiccuping each time.
It’s also worth mentioning that I haven’t seen any crashes yet. In the two weeks leading up to the 1.3 patch release, my game locked up and died 17 times. So suffice to say, the 1.3 patch is already off to a great start. I’m going to keep these fingers crossed though.
If you’re running into a number of performance problems on the Xbox One, my advice is to install Fallout 4 on a fast external hard drive. It could help.
Patch 1.3 Has Helped
Before the 1.3 patch arrived, I laid out a small list of changes I desperately wanted. The list included fixes for busted sound and broken fast travel. At one point the wish list also included a fix for the disappearing Pip-Boy.
The 1.3 patch change log didn’t mention any fixes for these issues but so far I haven’t run into any of them during my extended time with 1.3. (I’ve played on 1.3 for about 30 hours.)
I should also mention is that I’ve yet to come across the disappearing Pip-Boy bug that had been plaguing my game since November.
Some Annoying Issues
One issue that I am starting to see more frequently with 1.3 on board is a problem with settlement information displayed in the Workshop tab in the Pip-Boy.
I’ve seen water drop down to zero when I know I have several pumps working. I’ve seen beds drop down to zero when I know I have enough the accommodate the settlers there. It’s annoying because once I fast travel to the settlement, everything is normal.
I’m confident that this isn’t by design and others are seeing the same issue on 1.3. It’s not an experience-breaking bug but its wasted precious game time. I’ll continue to keep an eye on it but it’s something you should be aware of.
I’ve also seen numerous enemies and items fall through the floor. I saw it a few times on 1.2 and below but I’ve already seen six enemies vanish into thin air including a legendary enemy with legendary loot. Frustrating, especially since this wasn’t a problem for me on 1.2.
I’ve also seen the occasional floating NPC though a quick reload or a fast travel seems to alleviate that issue.
Object Fading Distance
Bethesda’s 1.3 patch “dramatically increases object fading distances.” You can see the company’s example of this in the tweet below.
Fallout 4's 1.3 consoles update dramatically increases object fading distances. Have a look… pic.twitter.com/9I728wSpm2
— BethesdaGameStudios (@BethesdaStudios) February 9, 2016
It’s a nice little touch, especially in areas with lots to look at in the distance. I noticed it right off the bat when walking outside of Diamond City and in the wastelands around Concord.
If you have a bunch of settlements built up, you’re going to love the 1.3 patch because it comes with a new settler menu that helps you delegate tasks to your various settlers. I wish this would’ve been included in the game’s initial release, that’s how good it is.
If you’re not familiar with how it works, take a look at the image above. I’m not sure how I lived without this but I did.
I’m now 30 hours in on the 1.3 patch (250+ hours overall) and the game, for the most part, feels very stable with 1.3 on board.
I’ve seen some annoying issues but I haven’t run into any major problems. That doesn’t mean I won’t and that doesn’t mean you won’t either. This is a huge game. There are also plenty of 1.3 problems swirling around.
The new 1.3 patch’s new features are excellent and welcomed additions, particularly the new settler management menu. It’s also nice to be able to build wires without having to use precious copper.
I plan to spend even more time with the Xbox One Fallout 1.3 patch and I’ll continue to update this post with additional thoughts about its fixes, performance, features, and problems.
At this point, I’m not in dire need of a Fallout 4 1.4 patch so that’s good.
Fallout 4 DLC Beta
Yesterday, Bethesda confirmed plans to host a closed Fallout 4 DLC beta and there are a few reasons why I'm excited about these plans.
First, entry into the beta program is free and it doesn't require you to buy the add-ons. Simply make an account on Bethesda.net, sign up, and keep those fingers crossed. Bethesda will be sending out emails to lucky participants in the near future.
It's also exciting because it will help Bethesda catch major problems before its releases each DLC to the public. This benefits everyone because it will help Bethesda wipe out the most glaring issues and catch smaller issues the company's might've missed without these additional eyes and ears.
I encourage you to sign up for the Fallout 4 DLC beta today because it's not clear how long Bethesda will be accepting applicants. It's also nice to ge free paid content for your favorite game from time to time. Give it a go.