For the first time in over 20 years, we are heralding the return of a much loved piece of gaming history with the classic RPG, Wasteland! Mutants. Again. Even more than there were last time: they seem to materialize out of the very grains of the radioactive desert sand. Venomous yellow eyes.
User reviews: Very Positive (159 reviews)
Release Date: Jan 1, 1988

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"You like Wasteland 2 and want to try the original created in 1988? Here it is - for oldschool CRPG fans - two thumps up!"

About This Game

For the first time in over 20 years, we are heralding the return of a much loved piece of gaming history with the classic RPG, Wasteland!

Mutants. Again. Even more than there were last time: they seem to materialize out of the very grains of the radioactive desert sand. Venomous yellow eyes. The black gunmetal glint of Uzis as they close in for the kill. There's nowhere to run, and nothing to rely on but your MAC 17 machine gun. What a way to save the human race.

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.

Now something more secretive and sinister than the usual roving bands of mutants and raiders is menacing humanity, and it's your job to investigate. Recruit the help you need, follow any leads you find, but beware. The wasteland is lawless desert and a lonely place, and the choices you make will shape the world around you. Better choose wisely. Your life depends on it.

Key Features

  • The godfather of the modern post-apocalyptic cRPG
  • One of the first reactive and immersive worlds that delivered persistent consequences to player choices
  • Featuring toggle-able modern updates such as new paragraph voice over, new music tracks and updated portraits. Play in classic mode to get the original experience
  • Awarded "Adventure Game of the Year" in 1988 by Computer Gaming World
  • Contains backstory and tie-ins to its long-awaited direct sequel, Wasteland 2, coming soon for digital download through Steam! [/list]

System Requirements

Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux
    • OS: Windows XP
    • Processor: 2 GHz Processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 3D graphics card
    • DirectX: Version 7.0
    • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Minimum monitor output or 720p.
    • OS: OSX 10.6 or higher
    • Processor: 2 GHz Processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: On board Intel GFX
    • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Minimum monitor output or 720p.
    • Processor: 2 GHz Processor
    • Memory: 1 GB RAM
    • Graphics: 3D graphics card
    • Hard Drive: 100 MB available space
    • Additional Notes: Minimum monitor output or 720p.
Helpful customer reviews
35 of 41 people (85%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
34.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 8
I permadeathed a 32 hr run of this game.

Yep, fell into a ♥♥♥♥ river in the vegas sewers and got washed out to sea.

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14 of 15 people (93%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
12.2 hrs on record
Posted: January 18
Review: So here I am playing a RPG Text-Adventure game from 1988 (I guess I should mention that I have not yet played too many CRPGs) - and well, i knew games from back then were rather complicated compared to the newer games and it happens that you get stuck and dont really know what to do to go on. But surprisingly it only took me a while (okay to be honest i watched a gameplay video or two :p ) to get into the game mechanics and I started to really enjoy the game. The game plays pretty well and compared to the original DOS version the steam version has nicer Aesthethics like redone artworks (sadly not animated like in the DOS version tho) and Built-In game documentary (that even gets read to you). From the Game mechanics side, I did not experience any Bugs, only some difficulties (my party missed alot in the beginning and there are places where the direction that you use your Skills in matters where - in my opinion - it shouldnt. Also when the mayority of your party is unconcious you end up in a never ending cycle of a fight until you eventually die). The game Dynamics went pretty smoothly aswell but you kind of have to know what skills you need have in the beginning whn creating your own characters.

So here are my personal Pros and Cons about the game:

Pros: + What the game lacks in graphics it makes up in Storytelling and Gameplay
+ Alot of fun and addicting gameplay
+ For the read-lazy people: The Game-Documentary has voiceovers (but then again: Is a game like this for read-lazy people at all? Either way I like how they did the Voiceovers :3)
+ Its the Grandfather of all Post-Apocalyptic RPGs... i mean that should be reason enough to play it!
+ Good Humor

Neutral: - Needs some getting used to but honestly you cant really blame the game for it
- You get pretty much thrown into cold water at the beginning and have a hard time figuring out where to go but hey cant go wrong with the nearest visible town, right? (Cold start is kind of like in Skyrim to give you some example to compare to... Good for emergent gameplay and I like that but I would just like to atleast get to know a bit of background knowledge PRO-TIP: The documentary gives you some hints about what is going on)

Cons: - Small tileset because they wanted to save up on disk-space back when the game was created... i was told it fitted onto 2 Floppys (why do bunnies look the same as opossums tho ;w; <- and yes these are enemies, and no they dont want to be cuddled, trust me i tried and died)
- Like I mentioned in my Review above there are parts where you can get stuck if you dont know some things (simple things mostly but you really need to know them)

Tips and Hints:

>Try to get a high IQ-stat when creating your character and skill them wisely (the highest of any stat is 18)
for example the Perception skill lets you "see" things that you cant see directly...
>Your CON (Constitution/Hit-Points) regenerates over time. You should search for safe places to "rest". Time passes
when you do any Action: this includes Moving, "View" whatever that does, holding down ESC.
>Dont get frustrated when you get stuck... it happens occasionally. Try to search the web and/or try things out.
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8 of 11 people (73%) found this review helpful
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: January 21
I played the hell out of this back on c64, love this game. Having the paragraphs built in is awesome, and having music is awesome. Other than that it's basically true to the original, which is fine.
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5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
26.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 13
I played the original game in the 1980s but never had the time to finish it. When it came out on Steam, I was excited to try it again; this time I managed to play it right to the end. A timeless classic, very much for 1980s classic RPG fans. Highly recommended to anyone interested in the evolution of RPGs.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
24.6 hrs on record
Posted: March 27
A seminal game for me back in the day. I was a whippersnapper, had all my hair and a disk drive for my C64. To be honest I was pretty crap at the game, I never did finish it, but it did not matter; I loved it. I imagined every trigger pull, every smoking shell case falling to the dirty floor (though imagining a fight with armoured fluffy bunnies took some doing some times).

The game has aged but it is still fit for purpose. And no longer must I endure the dread of one of the C64 disks crapping out on me.

Highly recommended.

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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
26.4 hrs on record
Posted: May 16
Wasteland is pushing 30 and is still one of the best games I've ever played. This game is better than many of its successors and that includes Fallout (which I also adore). The main difference here is a shocking amount of freedom and the sense of playing a pen and paper RPG. If you can use your imagination and role play you will love this game. The patch that added a soundtrack really made a great difference.
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3 of 4 people (75%) found this review helpful
26.6 hrs on record
Posted: December 27, 2014
This game is a classic. If your a fan of RPG's, this game is a must play.
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140 of 160 people (88%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 9, 2014
So here I am - heading back home on a bus from school, early 1989. The only real thing on my mind? Firing up the Commodore 64 and rejoining the bunch of Desert Rangers that have just escaped from their first encounter with the Scorpitron. Clips of various calibres were burnt through, LAW rockets fired, two mortally injured - but the team survived. Just.

How had this game got to captivate me so much? To this day, Wasteland ranks as my No.1 game of all time. Not a maybe, not a floating possibility amongst five other great games - but the clear front runner and sole contender. One that I doubt will ever be usurped in the immediate and all-consuming effect that wandering into the radioactive barrens of the American mid-West had on me.

Wasteland is a top-down RPG that follows the 'good guys' of Desert Rangers - attempting to put right the wrongs and work out what strange events are happening in post-nuclear desert around Las Vegas. Fully customisable characters are still fun today, but in late 1988, this was unheard of. Brawlers, pistoleros, ranged specialists to hi-tech geeks were all here - including murderous cyborgs, dodgy gamblers, bar owners and lethal, radioactive vermin. Wasteland introduced the options of restraint, or over-kill - depending on your mood and temperament. Do you carefully take a single shot at your target? Or burst fire of a trio of bullets? Or to hell with accuracy and lead count and simply rip through a magazine? Your ammo, your choice.

A newcomer to Wasteland in 2014 will be woefully unimpressed. What's all the fuss about? It looks archaic has virtually no sound and the main storyline can be completed in a very short time span. But a quarter of a century ago, this game shattered the adventure genre apart and set a whole new level of benchmark. The highly influenced offspring of the Fallout games show plenty of direct lineage back to the original game. But none enthrall in quite the same way that Wasteland did.

Even Steam refers to Wasteland 1 as 'The Original Classic'. For those lucky enough to have been around on its first release - that phrase sums it up perfectly.

10 out of 10.
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150 of 177 people (85%) found this review helpful
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 14, 2013
Classic CRPG, but I'm gonna warn anyone going in: we're talking a game from an era where you lost people permanently if they died, you need to know what to type into the text parser to get plot information at times, and there WILL be events that leave you going "Wait, but I thought I just did that right, why did I have to shoot a boy and his dog" (NO NOT THAT BOY AND HIS DOG IN A WASTELAND) because you didn't read a situation the same way as a developer dreamed it 30 years ago.

That said? If you know what you're getting yourself into, Wasteland still holds the hell up and is full of its own crazy charm. I'D recommend turning off the new graphics, just because the vectorization filter it puts on everything drives me apeshit, but if you dig it, don't let me stop you. You've gotta remember: this is the game that the Fallouts were paying homage to when they were new. That should tell you all kinds of things about the world in question.

Make sure someone learns Toaster Repair.
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67 of 74 people (91%) found this review helpful
87.7 hrs on record
Posted: September 6, 2014
The classic that started it all. This game brought rpg's from the dungeons to bombed-out cities and deserts. This was one of the first games to have memory and be able to save your progress, so when you made a change in the game world by killing someone or doing a mission it stayed that way! If you've never played this game I'll tell you about it. You're going to need imagination, like a lot of it. Because of limitations of Commador 64 this game relies on descriptive writing to give you a picture of whats happening in and out of combat. You'll need to when fighting with your party to find the right rhythm of attaking, dodging, and relaoding. Just like the first fallouts and most old rpg's, don't get to mad if a rat takes you down early on.

Over all if you want to play this make sure you know what you're getting, this is 26 years old. Its basicly a table top rpg program. You'll need to imagine the acton if thats what you desire.

p.s. Don't run right to Vegas
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71 of 86 people (83%) found this review helpful
7.7 hrs on record
Posted: November 25, 2013
While other rpgs of the era had you running around dungeons slaying rats and fighting generic evil wizards or abusing the limited memory of the game as you ransacked villages of innocent people only to leave and kill them all again, Wasteland was setting a new trend of making your choices count and forcing you to live with them. No clerics to raise your dead back to life, no instant magical healing and no one to hold your hand and tell you where to go. Wasteland had no qualms about letting you try to go where you please and if you could survive then by all means break the sequence and go exploring.

The storyline may seem simple compared to gems that came a decade later, but it still stands up far better than most other rpgs of its era and indeed a good deal of the ones we've seen today. It was hard, it was unforgiving, it expected you to think and take your own notes and it was great, this is what rpgs were in the late 80s and it's defintely not for everyone especially if you've been raised on modern games the whole time you've been playing.

But, if you're patient, if you can look beyond 16 color Enhanced Graphics Adapter art, if you can handle having to read things and keep track of information on your own, then maybe, just maybe you're cut out to be a Desert Ranger.
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37 of 45 people (82%) found this review helpful
4.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 23, 2013
Wasteland is a very old game, it comes from the days when having a mouse was a luxury, and having a 1 mb harddrive made you the coolest kid on the block.

It has very little in terms of graphics, apart from the portraits there are no animations in the game. Don't get me wrong, it was par for the course at the time. But compared to it's spiritual successor Fallout and basically any modern game. Playing it today will make it apparent how dated the game is.

While dated is a very strong word to throw at this game, if you've played a tabletop RPG in your lifetime and have an afternoon to kill Wasteland is a fairly engaging game. It portrays a post apocalyptic wasteland fairly well, and it has a lot of personality. Just bare in mind that it's not going to wow you, and you will have to print out a reference card and potentially the entire manual to properly understand the controls and storyline.
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42 of 55 people (76%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 14, 2013
I'm not sure if a game like this can still be appreciated in these modern days of fancy 3D graphics and short attention spans... but it damn well should be. For whatever my opinion may be worth, I hereby go on record to state that this is one of the greatest RPGs ever made. Of course, that bold statement does come with a couple of caveats: first, my thoughts may very well be colored by nostalgia to a fair degree; and second, I haven't actually played this game in over 20 years, so it's entirely possible I am just forgetting all the bad parts. At any rate, if you are into RPGs, classic games, or at all interested in revisiting the early days of PC gaming, this is one of the very few games that should be near the top of anyone's "must-play someday" list. While I can't guarantee playing this game will captivate and inspire you the same way it did for people back in the day, I am at least fairly confident that the game itself is probably fundamentally solid, even if the underlying technology and graphics don't hold up. So definitely give this a look if you're open to embracing "the classics", or if you're just an old man like me pining for the good old days.
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47 of 66 people (71%) found this review helpful
5.0 hrs on record
Posted: July 7, 2014
Wasteland is a product of its own time - low-res graphics, clumsy user interface, and a habit of not exactly telling you how to accomplish things like, say, giving the Visa card to Head Crusher (the game wants you to use one member of your party and put the Visa card on the seat you were previously sitting in opposite of Head Crusher, rather than, say, walking up to him and giving it to him directly).

This was fine back in the day. This is because that game was released in the era of computing known as The Bad Old Days, where you had to manually configure your PCI/ISA cards to avoid IRQ conflicts, where you had to make DOS Bootdisks to free up enough memory just to get the damn video game running, where you could write a little graphical menu in DOS where you could park the heads of your incredibly expensive 10 MB hard drive. You know, just in case the FBI comes around to ask you why you've been pirating so much ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ software to the rest of your Warez buddies on the BBS networks. Computer users had to put up with a lot of ♥♥♥♥ just to get games like Wasteland running, and so games like these were walks in the park compared to knowing the exact DOS commands to Telnet into the Matrix or some ♥♥♥♥♥♥♥♥ like that.

This version of the game runs entirely in a custom emulation environment. It includes a custom soundtrack written by a fan which is pretty cool. The game also allows you to read the paragraphs inside the game (complete with voice overs) when it asks you to read paragraph 38 or another random arbitrary number. The storytelling is pretty good. Other than that, it's pretty much just like the old PC version, which is as accessible to new players as noise music is to regular people. It will definitely make the old, bearded crowd sigh and reminisce about The Bad Old Days.

I recommend you give this about five hours, read a summary and the paragraph book, and then wait for Wasteland 2 to finish up.
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27 of 34 people (79%) found this review helpful
53.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 12, 2014

In days of old when knights were bold... there was no storage room for things like plot points. Go to steamapps\common\Wasteland\Extras and read the PDFs - at least the wasteland-hintbook.pdf

I beat this 20 years ago. Even with that this is an amazing amount of content that took 4-5 years to create. It'll be a 60 hour game.

There's a crapload of amazing value here, but only if you can manage the old-style UI. Otherwise don't bother, just play Wasteland 2.
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17 of 19 people (89%) found this review helpful
1.9 hrs on record
Posted: November 30, 2013

I used to love playing this on my old Apple ][e. Me and my friends would huddle around the computer and play coop before it even existed. Each of us created unique characters inside of Ranger Station slamming on the SPACEBAR forever to roll up the best stats and get the best points. We essentially would play cooperatively on 1 computer where we would take turns actually using the computer. The player would type and move around, while the other people simply watched the game and spoke aloud what they wanted their characters to do. "Attack, Burst, Leather Thug to the left". "Disband, move up." This last statement our close combat character would literally say 100 times each session. It was all part of the fun, and while it sounds painful, it was actually a blast. We'd make our party consisting of a "gun guy", a "brawler", a "doc", and a "nerd". The gun guy we'd load up with gun skills like SMG and Assault Rifle (M1989A1 NATOs baby!) and AT Weapon, this guy was clutch for making sure he shot and actually hit stuff in the game, where even if you have a really good DEX stat you might not hit what you shoot unless you take the skill too. The brawler would get pugilism and melee weapon skills (basically a tank in close quarter combat) and of course he'd get dibs on the Manglers and Clubs and stuff. Of course he never really relied only on melee and could take out some punks at a distance with a .45 or whatever. The doc is well, a medic with loads of Medic skill and a ridiculous INT stat, and the nerd was a well-rounded character that had a maximum INT but took skills that were not medic; forgery, metallurgy, lockpick, etc. IT IS NOT EASY I can't tell you how many hours of my life I spent huddled in front of the glow of my color composite monitor swapping disks playing Wasteland. It is a brutally difficult game by todays standards with permadeth period. No options for ressurection unless you save your game ahead of time, when you die you're dead. Perphaps part of what made this game so compelling to me and my friends was that we actually had to focus, use our brains for team work, and have a strategy instead of just mindless button mashing like we were doing on our NESes with Rush'n'Attack, Rygar, and Ikari Warriors (among others). We would die often and we would regroup and rethink of our strategy. We would pick better skills learn more about the attributes and when they played a role and for what and this whole time we were actually having a boatload of fun. I can remember TPD (total party death) once we reached Las Vegas (♥♥♥♥ I remember this happening in Quartz too, the game is freaking hard and the deck is definitely not stacked in your favor) as we got shredded to pieces by a cyborg with energy weapons (up until then we didn't even know energy weapons existed). It took hours to rebuild, start over, and level up to be strong enough to get back to Las Vegas and actually take those bots down. AND WE CHEATED We used to build 4 characters in Ranger Station, only 1 of which would we actually try to make decent. This character was the "courier" he would be escorting the cannon fodder other 3 characters straight to Quartz, where they would sell EVERY piece of gear they owned, then he'd Pool the money and walk them back to Range Station, and we'd delete them. Do this 100 - 300 times, and you can amass an enormous cache of weapons, armor, money, etc. Then when you have your loot and gear all sorted, you build 3 other characters and you give a ♥♥♥♥ about them too. After those 3, we would give the couriers ♥♥♥♥ to another remaning character either kill the courier to create a better character, or sometimes we'd just keep him. We used macros to automate most of this. In essence, this is cheating against the spirit of the game, but it was ♥♥♥♥ing hard and we were young and thought we were clever. I can tell you even then it wasn't always easy after. Yes we might have SMG's and NATO Assault rifles with boatloads of clips and TNT and Kevlar armor, but we still got our asses handed to us in Vegas. WE NEVER BEAT IT We got ver close to beating the game, but we could never find the Sleeper Base to make it to space. IT IS OLD THOUGH... I know, right? It' s pretty old, and it doesn't age super well. If you didn't grow up playing this game you might hate it. If you can get past the old-ness of the game, the graphics even with this re-release are not great, the SA antialiasing helps, but I kinda like the crunchy pixels better. The music and the voice overs are pretty awesome in this version; we had a paragraph book we'd use to read from (which doubled as a form of copy protection). If you like oldschool RPGs that are top-down (like Ultima, or 2400AD) and you are ready to commit to actually trying to win (if that's your thing) and don't mind getting your ♥♥♥ whipped until you learn some tricks and techniques, this game will reward you. There is a lot of game in ths small package, and there is a lot of personality and character that this game had that no other game did. EA innovated on many fronts with Wasteland, and not just in the computer but the paragraphs really added a ton of story and immersion to the game that other RPGs of the time lacked sorely. It was like living in the best "Choose Your Own Adventure" (don't get be started about how awesome those books were in my childhood) computer game ever made. THIS WAS WHAT STARTED THE FALLOUT(s) If you're a fan of Fallout at all, you will probably like this game. It takes time and dedication, but this is the precursor to all the others. For that reason alone you should check it out, but the game has tons of merit as well, and the re-release really does try to polish an old title to a more modern standard. I think it does a pretty good job, but I had some issues getting the mouse to work. The keyboard is the way to go and it works no problem. GIVE IT A SHOT I RECOMMEND IT You needed an imagination in the old days, and you still need it today, but the voice overs really do help make this game a lot better than it was. The music is OK too. Is it going to blow your mind? Probably not. Is it going to keep you coming back, maybe. Is it going to make you work for the reward of the story? Without a doubt. Wasteland is one of my favorite games and I highly recommend it.
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16 of 18 people (89%) found this review helpful
9.7 hrs on record
Posted: February 4, 2014
I think i its one of the best games of all time. It aged really well. Its only 6 bucks too so thats another plus. It can be a bit hard at times with the way to do things and the game can be rough on begginers. There is plenty of guides on the internet however so this should not be too big of a problem. Its 26 years old and in my opinion is better than 98% of those mindless games that come out today.
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28 of 40 people (70%) found this review helpful
2.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 27, 2013
Well. Where do i start....
Yes. It is old. The controls are funky and complicated. The game is difficult. BUT:
THIS GAME was the game that came before Fallout. And its better, at least storywise. And whats even better:
The original developers of Wasteland 1 and Fallout 1+2 are currently working on Wasteland 2.<
So, if you wanna see what started it all, and play a game with insane humor and great story, try this. It's a steal, and will get you into the mood for Wasteland 2, which will be released early 2014.
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21 of 28 people (75%) found this review helpful
49.5 hrs on record
Posted: February 10, 2014
“A mind that is stretched by a new experience can never go back to its old dimensions.”

Even by today’s standards Wasteland remains a very good turn-based RPG with a balanced mix of combat and quest related problem-solving. It has a non-linear design, customizable character statistics and skills and multiple puzzle solutions. Especially the last point gives you the chance to advance with a variety of tactics. You can open closed door with the lockpicking ability, or you use the climb skill, or force it open with a crowbar or blow it up with a rocket launcher.

Your group starts with four people and can be extended to seven members by recruiting certain civilians and creatures. And you should do it as fast as possible, because this game has a high and sometimes unforgiving difficulty level.

Most people will be discouraged by the outdated graphics and initially rough gameplay. But if you are willing to give this game a chance, you will experience a classic role-playing game with all its charms and challenges.

Fun fact: Wasteland’s general concept and setting became the basis for Interplay’s RPG series Fallout.

My rating system consists of six categories in descending order of importance:

- Atmosphere
- Combat & Controls
- Tactical gameplay
- Characters
- Details
- Story

Based on the performance each category will receive one of the following grading:

- S-Rank: excellent
- A-Rank: very good
- B-Rank: solid
- C-Rank: satisfactory
- D-Rank: inferior

If the S-Rank is awarded, a quote from the game or personal comment will be added as a token of my respect (in brackets).

Atmosphere: A-Rank

Combat & Controls: B-Rank

Tactical gameplay: S-Rank

(Dummy! You should be smart enough not to touch cactus. – Hell Razor gets hurt for 6 points of damage and knocks him unconscious.)

Characters: A-Rank

Details: A-Rank

Story: B-Rank

There are no achievements to conquer.

Achievement difficulty: none

Wasteland 2 (PC) – Turn-based role-playing game
(Post-apocalyptic Science Fiction) – 2014
Link to Steam review for Wasteland 2.
Wasteland (PC) – Classic turn-based role-playing game
(Post-apocalyptic Science Fiction) – 1988
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14 of 17 people (82%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
1.0 hrs on record
Posted: December 11, 2013
A million years ago I was playing this classic on my 8086 before Steam, before the Internet, before 16 color graphics cards, before Fallout. I would spend hours and hours playing this game, it's the first game that I know of where you build an android, clone yourself and all around blow ♥♥♥♥ up or talk your way through. If you don't have a tolerance for older graphics that make your eyes feel like someone is pouring hot lava on them or you can't stand antiquated interfaces then I would say you should play this game any way. It'll toughen you up.
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