Bethesda fulfilled the dreams of fervent Fallout fans everywhere when it unveiled last year’s limited-edition Pip-Boy, a smartphone receptacle styled after the series’ iconic wrist computer. But the collectible wasn’t perfect — it lacked any hardware of its own, instead relying on a snugly fit smartphone’s hardware and a companion app to drive the experience. But at Bethesda’s E3 event in Los Angeles on Sunday, the publisher unveiled a successor, the Pip-Boy Deluxe Bluetooth Edition, that does the old model better in almost every facet.
The Pip-Boy Deluxe Edition, importantly, features an “integrated screen” and packs its own “on-board software and hardware.” It’s technically capable of functioning independently of a smartphone, then, but it won’t be able to do much without one — short of Bluetooth, it lacks any sort of wireless connectivity. But paired to a handset, it’ll show your Fallout character’s various in-game stats (including Status, Perks, and Special) as you traverse the wasteland. And in addition, it’s capable of letting you take and answer phone calls, view contacts, read incoming e-mail and text messages, and, thanks to a charging stand that doubles as a speaker, streaming ‘tunes from your music app of choice.
The new Pip-Boy is replete with working dials, buttons, and knobs, and features a cushioned foam interior “designed to fit most human arms.” It’s not something you’ll want to wear for a prolonged period, likely — it weights about two pounds, according to the listing on Bethesda’s store — but if true immersion during late-night Fallout play sessions is your ultimate aim, the new Pip-Boy seems the right tool for the job.
The Pip-Boy Deluxe Bluetooth edition is priced at a hefty $350, and is available for pre-order in the U.S., Canada, and Australia. It’ll release in November in limited batches, Bethesda said — only 5,000 units will ship.