Locked in the Vault: First Hour with Fallout 3

Last night I finally got to play Fallout 3. I only got to play for about an hour or so, so this is just a short impression post. For the most part, it was all about getting to grips with your character from his/her birth to late teenage years, growing up among the jumpsuited citizenry of Vault 101. My character was born, got her Pip-Boy wrist-computer at age 10, became a teenager and then a young adult. Along the way it was clear I was close friends with Amata, the daughter of Vault 101’s Overseer- the undisputed leader of the Vault who had the power of life and death over his subjects. I also crossed swords with a young gang of bullies, though I eventually ended up helping the gang leader out and making perhaps a friend to count on in the future.

Unfortunately, once the shiz hit the fan and trouble broke out due to my father escaping the Vault and the Overseer’s men targetting me for liquidation, things got a bit messy. I ran around in circles in the labyrinthine Vault, got into some skirmishes where I bludgeoned both guards and giant roaches to death. I collected various trinkets and a load of uniforms (leaving half-naked corpses in my wake, just like Oblivion) and doo-dads, but unfortunately I couldn’t find my way out of the place. I forgot where the Overseer’s room was, and I couldn’t pick the Vault’s main door lock. So in the end I just quit the game.

Once I return, I’ll make sure to restart from the very beginning- for starters I’ll probably make a male character instead (the game’s better played in First Person anyway) and then I’ll make it a point to scrounge up more stuff, study the map and layout of the place so I don’t get lost again.

First impressions- while the game looks slick and definitely nice… Oblivion surely looks a lot better. Character models are notably less detailed (but still nice), and the animations of the various characters are stiff. Controlling your character is easy but I found myself struggling a bit with using the VATs and firing guns… this should be remedied by longer playtime though.

Anyway, despite any negatives I may have said, the game is pretty exciting, and an intriguing world where you can do whatever you want- be as mean or as nice as you wish to be. I can’t wait to plunge back into the Apocalypse and really get irradiated by Bethesda’s latest.

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