Fallout 3: The Black Sheep

Source: Wikipedia.org

Source: Wikipedia.org

Ethan Clark, Journalist

Reading Time: 3 minutes

After the release of Fallout 2, Interplay/Black Isle suffered from massive debt, and was forced to cancel a planned Fallout 3 (now dubbed Van Buren), and online game: Fallout Online. In 2004, Bethesda Softworks purchased the Fallout franchise for 5.75 million dollars from the now bankrupt Interplay. Bethesda soon revealed plans for a new Fallout 3 with a new view on the series despite weariness from fans. On Oct. 28, 2008, Fallout 3 was released to critical acclaim, and scored 9’s and 10’s on almost every review site. After the hype and similar, yet better, games began to come out, fans began to question Bethesda’s “masterpiece” and if they had simply latched onto the game because it was the one of the only modern first person shooter (FPS) role-playing games (RPG) available.

Source: Amazon.com

Fallout 3 is one of my least favorite games ever made. Bethesda had everything going for it, even the benefit of the doubt from many old school players. However, Bethesda threw away most of what made the original Fallout great, and replaced it with a generic shooter that had speech elements. The main point Bethesda advertised in trailers was a new combat system called VATS even, and it basically was Fallout 2’s targeting system with slowed down bullet sounds and a rotating camera. It was still a neat concept, but the FPS mechanics were awful.

Bethesda had never made good ranged first person combat before, so iron sights, proper targeting and lock on were off. You could shoot something point blank and completely miss or do so little damage because the shot wouldn’t register correctly. Not to mention, every characters outfit was tinted a sickly green and gray, and it was very hard hit shots from far away when you couldn’t tell what was a person, and what was the ground. Considering Dead Space, Left 4 Dead, and Gears of War 2 were released in 2008, the graphics were kinda sad.

Source: Amazon.com

The perk system became a lot easier, with the ability to get more perks and level-up points for skills. Due to this the difficulty lowered severely, making the game super easy. The only real challenge became the deathclaw, and even that became easy at higher levels.

Unsurprisingly, the story was even worse this time around. Even Fallout 2 had a few little things that made the story worth it. Not this time, as it was the same formula as Fallout 2, but with a half hour tutorial, Liam Neeson, and a DLC locked ending (I will be covering all DLC’s in another article). Even the GECK and Enclave were back, with Fallout 1 and 2 canon defying reasons. Yay.

Fallout 3 is not just a bad Fallout game, it’s just a terrible game in general. I really wish that Black Isle would have sold the rights to another game developer, but I guess that was due to TES IV: Oblivion being so highly received. Fallout 3 DLC’s are next up, and the inevitable Curse of Osiris review is being delayed again (trust me, it’s coming).

Ratings (Out of 10)

Graphics: 3

Music: 5

Cinematics: 3

Story: 2

Content: 7

Controls: 4

Gameplay: 4


Final Rating: 4


-Ethan Clark