Fallout: New Vegas mod turns power armor into the beastly tank suit it was meant to be, might finally get me to play something other than a sneaky sniper

 Fallout power armor wearer holding up a defeated NCR ranger.
Fallout power armor wearer holding up a defeated NCR ranger.

The Titans of the New West mod for Fallout: New Vegas recently got a 2.0 update and a fresh trailer showing off its complete reinvention of the game's power armor. Titans of the New West aims to nail the power armor fantasy of the 2D games, turning you into a lumbering hulk straight out of Warhammer 40K.

When it comes to first-person RPGs like the ones on Bethesda's Gamebryo/Creation engines, I always want to be a sneaky bastard, play it like Thief or Deus Ex, some variation on Skyrim's vaunted stealth-archer. It doesn't help that Fallout's iconic power armor is kind of diminished in its first two 3D entries, 3 and New Vegas. You're basically choosing to be a slower, clunkier version of your guy with few mechanical benefits, and you don't even look that cool⁠—the games' weird, bulky but not imposing power armor almost augments the flaccidness of that classic Gamebryo Stance™.

Comparing New Vegas' OG power armor to a Titan of the New West is like looking at one of those Charles Atlas cartoons where a skinny wimpy guy transforms into a huge and beefy guy by eating his greens and doing 50 push-ups a day. The animations really help sell the suits' new mass as well⁠—the basic walking cycle looks like it was modeled after a muscle beach bully looking to kick sand in some nerd's face.

Don't even get me started on the one-handed firing animations for everything from SMGs to rocket launchers (complete with Terminator 2-style flip cocking for the lever rifles). That, coupled with an enhanced capability to no-sell enemy gunfire, reminds me as much of the gameplay in Robocop: Rogue City as it does of the more tank-like suits in Fallout 4 or 76.

I also appreciate how the enhanced armors accomplish the powerful, tank-like fantasy of Fallout 4's power armor without turning the suits into a sort of limited-use, battery-dependent "vehicle." The modified power armors still look like part of the game's gear system as opposed to being siloed off as their own thing.

The Titans of the New West armors might be a wee bit OP, but so what? It's power armor. I might consider making my next New Vegas character a beeflord in a mini mech suit instead of another sneaky bounty hunter dork, though the allure of my old favorite fits will be hard to resist. You can check out Titans of the New West for yourself over on the New Vegas Nexus.