Hilarious The Outer Worlds companion death bug finally fixed

One particular bug has been plaguing players of The Outer Worlds for some time now. Developers practically pulled out their hair trying to solve The Outer Worlds companion death bug and it seems that they’ve finally licked it in Patch 1.2, and the cause of the bug is absolutely hilarious.

Obsidian’s QA Lead (and Vice President of the Dell Mibbler Fan Club) Taylor Swope took to Twitter to talk about a bug that he believes he “spent more time investigating than I have for any other individual bug in my career.” This particular problem with The Outer Worlds was tough for players to deal with and even tougher for the QA team at Obsidian to figure out.

The Outer Worlds companion death bug ship

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The basics of it are this: at some seemingly random point in the game, a companion quest would be marked as “failed” in the quest log. The problem with The Outer Worlds companion death bug was that your companions weren’t dead at all. This was especially strange as the only time companions can actually die is in the game’s super-difficult SuperNova mode.

There are a few reasons that this could be happening. As an example, a trigger in programming could be firing off incorrectly, so Swope did the only sensible thing and  investigated literally “every script and line of code that could possibly make the game think that a companion was dead.”

Eventually, he narrowed it down to a script that kicks in when a companion’s health reaches zero. Companions in the party will be knocked down and revived at the end of combat, and those not in the party would die. The issue got even stranger, as the only place something like this could happen is on the ship, a location where companions are protected from death… mostly.

It seems that the only thing that could actually kill a companion (or at least, cause the game to consider them dead) on the ship with the way the code was written was fall damage, but there isn’t any height large enough to cause lethal fall damage. This discovery led to more investigation and eventually led to the source of The Outer Worlds companion death bug.

For this bug to happen, several things had to happen at the same time:

  1. You had to be on the ship.
  2. You had to be in a conversation.
  3. Another companion had to be climbing a ladder.

The ultimate problem was that the other companion climbing a ladder would keep climbing straight up, off the ladder, and into space.

Thankfully, the team at Obsidian managed to track down the source of The Outer Worlds companion death bug and get it fixed. You can see video of this hilarious bug in action in the tweet below.