Review by Vincentsdream
"Who said looking in trash cans wouldn't be fun?!"
Bethesda has continued the Fallout series by creating what can only be described as the greatest game in the Fallout line up, Fallout 3. Where the previous two games had holes, this one filled it, and with radioactive waste to boot! Taking everything they learned, both good and bad, from the "Elder Scroll Series" Bethesda was not only able to build a realistic post-apocalyptic Washington DC, but were able to make walking through a bare desert land scape fun, and if that wasn't enough they made rummaging through trash, yes trash, a fun time as well. And we're not just talking about graphics or game-play, the story line has proved once again that the Fallout Series will have one of the most intriguing stories to tell in for a long time.
Story: The Story, to say the least, is always the most important part of a game. And this one does not fail to deliver and intricate story. As usual in a Bethesda game, if one simply plays through the main quest they will find the game lacking in the story department. However the world is made of hundreds of "Alternate Quests". Quests that not only build the world around the player, but allow him to experience what the game has to fully offer! The Main story alone is a great one, it tells of a boy separated from his family, and thrust into a world full of dangers, and it is up to the player on how that world will change the boy. Whether it will twist him into another Raider, or only press him further to better the world that was horrifically scared by war. The Player will have complete control over their character, from his physical appearance (Which is greatly improved from Bethesda previous game) to his "karma" or to put is more simply whether he is good, neutral, or evil. I will not go into detail of the story so as to ruin it, but your Karma level will determine certain events in the world, and even give you access to certain quests. Finally I would say the most interesting part of the story is the radio stations, who will from time time speak of your deeds. 10/10
Graphics: The Graphics are amazing, to date I've yet to see a game surpass the graphics of Fallout 3. And this was before I plugged my X-box into a High Def television. After doing such, I was just blown away. The detail is absolutely amazing. The character models are very detailed and realistic, the only issue with characters is at times pieces of clothing will bleed through objects, but even that is not a huge issue. The backgrounds are stunning, they really put into the setting, in fact I would say they are exactly what a Post-Apocalyptic world would look like. The only issue there is at times they will load "late" but no where near as much as Oblivion or Mass Affect. On top of all of this the armor and weapons all have a nice "worn down" feel to them. 9/10
Game-play: Here is another key element in making a great game. The game-play for fallout 3 seemed odd at first (seeing clips) but once you start playing it really envelopes you. On top of it being an rpg they have given it the distinct feel of a First Person Shooter, allowing the player to choose how they wish to play. If you wish to simply point and shoot you can do that, or you can go into V.A.T.S. and choose specifically where you would like to shoot/attack and it will show you your percentage of hitting the target and so forth. Upon creating a character you choose your stats, and starting skills. Like a traditional RPG you gain XP to level up, leveling up will allow you to increase your skills, and choose "Perks", perks allow you gain bonuses so you can customize what you want your character to be, a melee fighter, a sniper, or a thief? Up to you. However there are some more bigger pressing issues with the game-play then any other aspect of the game. For one, there is a level cap, and it is a stressful one. Upon reaching level 20 you can no longer gain XP, and let me tell you, if you are like me and just love a sandbox and go through every bit of it, you will reach that level cap before the games end, and maybe even before half way being done. This can be a very stressful thing, however doing actual quests and fighting are their own reward, but this is still a very annoying thing. Luckily the Level Cap will be increased with further released DLC.. 8/10
Sound: For me voice acting is a big part in a game, if it has a horrible voice acting cast, then it just really pulls away from the realism. One of my major issues with Oblivion was it seemed to only have a cast of 7 voice actors, who voiced every person in a certain race. This game fixed that, and provided what seemed to be individual voicing even for random characters you find. On top of that, Liam Neeson voices the father which is, lets just face it, really cool. But aside form the voice acting the sound in this game is amazing. The guns all have great sound, and at times they are given an extra edge to show wear and tear. 10/10
Replay Value: There is so much potential in this game, it truly is one you can, and will have to, play several times with different characters. First you have the replay value of your character, obvious being male/female, then their "class" whether they focus on strengths or stealth. Guns or Melee weapons. Then you have the Good/Neutral/Evil aspect. And finally the several quests, some of which are Karma based, you really can't get everything in one play. This is a game I'll be playing for a while. And no doubt I'll always find something new. 10/10
Overall: The game provides great entertainment for the player, aside for some very minor issues in the graphics department, and the annoying level cap this game is great! This is one you will be able to pick up and play for ages, and never get bored. I highly suggest you buy this game, as renting it wont do it any justice what so ever. And on top, there is more to be released in the future. Already they have DLC out, Operation Anchorage, which only adds to the greatness of this game!
I give it a 8/10, and to be honest the only major reason it gets 8 is because of the level cap. Yes DLC is fixing it to 30, but even that is very very low for me. But that doesn't change the fact that this is a must own game! Go get it! Now! Before the Apocalypse happens!
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 02/19/09
Game Release: Fallout 3 (US, 10/28/08)
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