Answer me this. Have you ever crawled out of your bed in the morning, and stumbled across your floor to an old school locker? Picked through its contents searching for a radiation suit that will keep you alive through your daily routine of scavenging food from overly radiated shopping centres and searching the ruins of military complexes in search of ammunition suited to your hand repaired rifle? No? I didn’t think so; I would’ve been surprised if you said yes.
But if that sounds appealing to you, then perhaps you better prepare accordingly. Make sure you’ve got some supplies and armour; a weapon would certainly help as well. So let us together, travel down the dusty roads The Capital Wasteland.
Fallout 3 is considered by a great many people to be the title that brought the post apocalyptic age into gaming in its truest rendition yet. Fallout 3 is one of the largest games on any gaming platform in existence, the area that the game takes place in, known as The Capital Wasteland has an area of just over 400 square kilometres.
And packed into that massive area is a plethora of features. Including striding monstrosities called Behemoths, the Super mutants make the triumphant returns as rules of certain areas of the wasteland and many, many others.
The Brotherhood of Steel play a great part on your quests and we are even introduced to the Ghouls once again, the zombie like creatures that are mutated humans left over from the fallout of the nuclear fire. There are even a multitude of appearances from the Brotherhood of Steels outcast faction.
What’s more, The Enclave makes a comeback, and this time they are angrier than before. They have returned with their Vertabirds and Powered Armour, but that to has been improved. Having harnessed the powers of Tesla technology, they have doubled the effectiveness of their plasma based weaponry and they have even crafted Hellfire Armour, designed to boost the effectiveness of their flame wielding shock troopers shattering the morale of all those before them.
What made this title another interesting hit was the fact that the various factions across the wastes didn’t just exist side by side. They would actively go to war with each other. When walking through the wastelands you can come across Brotherhood Outcasts scavenging parties searching for lost technology when they encounter an Enclave science team. Both parties will instantly engage each other, and fight it out with much gusto.
We have the superior training of The Brotherhood of Steels Outcasts Vs the mighty Plasma weaponry and advanced power armour of The Enclave both duking it out in a battle to the death where the winner takes all. Missiles and plasma, flamers and laser: all these weapons being wielded by your opponents can also be used by the player, giving you the chance to bring the fight to your enemies in style.
The main quest begins after the player is forced to flee Vault 101 when James leaves the vault, throwing it into anarchy and causing the paranoid Overseer to send his police force after the player. The search for James takes the character on a journey through the Wasteland, first to the nearby town of Megaton, named for the undetonated atomic bomb at its centre, then the Galaxy News Radio station, whose enthusiastic DJ, Three Dog, gives the player the moniker of “The Lone Wanderer”.
The player travels to Rivet City, a derelict aircraft carrier now serving as a fortified human settlement. Here the player meets Doctor Li, a scientist who worked alongside the player’s father. Doctor Li informs the player of Project Purity, a plan conceived by Catherine and James to purify all the water in the Tidal Basin and eventually the entire Potomac River with a giant water purifier built in the Jefferson Memorial. However, continued delays and Catherine’s death during childbirth put an end to the project, and James took the player’s character as a new born to raise them in the safety of Vault 101.
Fallout 3 also seen the return of the much loved system known as VATS. The fans have always loved VATS and seeing it for the first time in a fully 3D world in all its up close and personal gory glory. The Vault-Tec Assisted Targeting System, or V.A.T.S., plays an important part in combat. While using VATS., real-time combat is paused, and action is played out from varying camera angles in a computer graphics version of “bullet time”, creating a combat system that the Bethesda dev team described as a hybrid between turn-based and real-time combat.
Various actions cost action points, limiting the actions of each combatant during a turn, and the player can target specific body areas for attacks to inflict specific injuries; head shots can be used for quick kills or blinding, legs can be targeted to slow enemies’ movements, opponents can be disarmed by shooting at their weapons, and players can drive certain enemies into a berserker rage by shooting out things like antennae on various overgrown insects and combat inhibitors on armoured robots. Although using VATS wrenched control away from the player, completely removing the first person and third person shooter elements. Some players didn’t like this, but for the most part it was a well-received implementation for the most part.
Being both revolutionary in terms of gameplay and AI, size and scope and the sheer magnitude of your choices make this game on of the most important titles in the current generations’ library. It’s no wonder it has received a great deal of expansion content and a multitude of awards. So join us next time as we look at some of the lesser known, and lesser loved games in the series. The horrible creation known as Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel.