For me, the original Fallout game and its sequel represented some of the better things that happened during my “gamer” days. For me, these two titles represented the best two RPG games I have ever played (yes, better than Diablo or any other game you can think about). For me, Fallout deserved to be placed on the shrine of immortality and never be bothered again. You can imagine that I was pretty upset when I heard that Bethesda Softworks is planning to offer us a third in the franchise and oh, such a different one!

Because I completely disliked Oblivion and the Elder Scrolls series, as well as the blasphemical idea of moving Fallout to the first person genre, I was mad and promised myself I will not even try to play Fallout 3, just to keep the memories alive: original, unaltered, incredible. But then details hit the Internet, videos were released and I understood that evolution is what brought us here in the first place.

Now I must admit that I am thrilled I did not ignore Bethesda’s idea of a new Fallout game just because its gameplay had nothing to do with that of the original titles, just because I did not like The Elder Scrolls, just because I was kind of living in the past in my own Vault 101. I am thrilled I had the guts to open the door to a new world I knew very few things about and completely enjoy it as it is.

Fallout 3 is impressive from the moment it kicks off with an intro video that remains true to the original concept of the series – a video that perfectly describes the world you’ll let yourself carried into: post-apocalyptic and ruined, with bits of punk sci-fi elements but yet humorous and completely impressive. That’s the world you, as a character, are being born into: then you’ll choose your name, the way you’ll look when you’ll grow older and slowly you will lay the foundation of what you’re going to become by the end of the game.

I was really impressed with these first minutes in Fallout 3: a uniquely blended, charming character creation and tutorial that takes place while you’re a youngster. That’s when you first get the feeling that absolutely every decision you make has an impact on what’s going to happen next – now or after a few hours of gameplay, a big impact or a slight change in your story… you will never know for sure, but you’ll always feel that anything you do influences the world at least a little bit. And I must admit that I can’t think about any other game that offered me a similar feeling.

I have even tested this and I proved it to be right (don’t worry about spoilers in this paragraph, as I’m talking about the beginning of the game): basically at the beginning of the first mission in the game, Amata offered me a gun I did not accept and went searching for a specific door by my own. A few minutes later, I saw Amata being questioned in her room. I rushed in as an old school Rambo and killed the two poor souls and saved the girl. The result? My behavior made her mad and she refused to talk to me. So I restarted the whole thing and, instead of rushing in I sneaked by and continued my quest. Amata pulled the gun I left her and all by herself shot the poor fellows because she had “no other choice”. And I was like “WOW!” – I started to wonder what could’ve happened if I took Amata’s gun when she offered it: and here we are, with already three different possible scenarios, just two minutes after the game kicks off. Imagine endless hours of similar treats and you already have a strong reason why Fallout 3 is huge.

Because I strongly believe that these choice changers are exactly what stand behind Fallout’s greatness: the main quest is not at all a lengthy one and I do believe that if you would decide to stick to the main story and ignore all possible side quests, you’d finish the game in less than 10-12 hours. However, secondary missions double the game’s life while the replay level and possibility to explore a vast universe make it a quite lengthy game.

5 COMMENTS

  1. “Bethesda took the chance of bringing us a different Fallout experience and they managed to reach perfection in today’s terms.”

    So today’s terms are meaningless choices&consequences and poor writing?

    “now I can say that their game deserves to be placed on the shrine I was talking in the beginning, right above the first two games in the series. Fallout 3 is evolution.”

    No you can’t. It’s regression. It has nothing that the first two didn’t already bring to the table. (Except first-person-view but if that’s evolution in your book, maybe you should stop reviewing rpg’s and get back to CoD4). And it does poorly in several of hallmark rpg-issues:
    character development, c&c, story.

    Just compare Megaton and Junktown for christ sakes!

  2. “So today’s terms are meaningless choices&consequences and poor writing?”

    meaningless choices? try playing the game more than once.
    poor writing? sure. until you learn to read. idiot.

    And I don’t know where it becomes clear that this game is “regression” compared to the old ones.
    Maybe in your head that sort of thing makes sense.

    Here I thank God there aren´t many retards like you or else every game would be same old, same old.

  3. “meaningless choices? try playing the game more than once.”

    Meaningless, yes. Even if you blow up Megaton (and let’s not even go to the fact how utterly stupid the whole town is), Moira still lives and nothing else changes. Oh yes, ThreeDog whines about you but that’s about it.

    “poor writing? sure. until you learn to read. idiot.”

    Unfortunately, I learned how to read while in kindergarden. You honestly cannot claim that the writing in F3 is anything but piss-poor job. Both Todd Howard and Pete Hines themselves said that writing was their lowest priority and it absolutely shows:
    “I’m looking for my father, middle-aged guy, have you seen him?” or
    “[Intelligence]So you fight the good fight?” are just the tip of an iceberg of the fanfiction-level crap that the game spouts.

    “And I don’t know where it becomes clear that this game is “regression” compared to the old ones.”

    Maybe you should stop to think then. Bethesda took a game series which already had nearly perfect character system, logically consistent world and which was famous for both its writing and c&c. They turned out an Oblivion with Guns, ruining the character system (doesn’t matter what kind of character you create, you can easily max your stats and skills by level 20), ruining the world (where does the water and food come from? There are no farms or wells. Brotherhood of Steel is turned into a knights-in-shiny-armor thing while Super Mutants are just generic orcs to be mindlessly killed etc), and horrible writing. Megaton/Tenpenny plot has been lauded as a real choice, except its only cosmetical. And the endgame… jeesus, why I do I even need to point this stuff out?

    “Here I thank God there aren´t many retards like you or else every game would be same old, same old.”

    Oh yes. How much does Bethesda pay you? Or is it just the nagging feeling in the back of your head that you paid 50$ for a crap game and now need to mindlessly defend it everywhere?

    Fallout2 improved some aspects of Fallout. BG2 improved nearly everything about BG, KotOR2 did the same for KotOR1 even though it was made by a different studio. I don’t even cry for isometric and TB since Vampire the Masquerade: Bloodlines showed the world that you can create an excellent RPG with first-person and realtime. Too bad the hacks at Bethesda were busy believing their own hype to take notes.

  4. all i can say is wow. i thought F3 was and is a good game, its no oblivion but i havent played F1 or F2, or the other elderscrolls for that fact. but its just a game, u dont need to rag on it, if u dont like it shut up and dont play it. you need a life if your going to post an essay on how you think fallout 3 sucks.

    Drizzt.

  5. Hey Drizzt, maybe you should share your insight with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, you know the guys who award the Oscars, because, after all, it’s only movies. They probably need a life, instead of reviewing and criticizing movies.

    You admit you have never played F1 or F2 and neither have you played any TES-game before Oblivion. Why should I take you seriously then? You have nothing to compare. It’s like claiming McDonalds is the pinnacle of culinary delight – idiotic claim but understandable if you’ve never had proper food.

    And if you think that was an essay, you’ll have nasty shocks when you get to high school, not to mention college.

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