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Fallout 3 out today in North America! - Virtual Sacrifice Log
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Fallout 3 out today in North America!
I've got a long history as a gamer. Those of you who know me well, know that. Beyond early Pong/Atari/ColecoVision/Commodore memories, it was the Apple ][ that really got me into gaming. And while the submarine simulator that took half an hour to load and the Olympic games with their tinny rendition of the Soviet anthem were fun, it was role playing games that hit me hardest. Eternal Dagger, picked up on the way back from a family trip to upstate NY, really bit me in a major way. Once we got an 8088 IBM compatible PC the SSI "gold box" games wasted away many of my evenings. I still have vivid memories of clearing out certain sections of Phlan (particularly Sokol Keep) while listening to Metallica's …And Justice For All. The Ultima series, when I finally got into them through Ultima III for the NES, would end up becoming a major influence on my development.

But Wasteland was always my favorite.

It was a post-apocalyptic RPG, where you played a squad of desert rangers tasked with bringing order to the chaos and ultimately saving the world. Witty humor, beautifully written jokes and plot points, and vast improvements over the Bard's Tale engine that had already wasted so many of my evenings. Bard's Tale III was a wonderful game that kept me hooked from world to world, but Wasteland kept me hooked and replaying the same world over and over again. What originally hooked me on cybersphere were the Wasteland references.

My first play through was rather rocky. I wandered north into Darwin Village, way out of my league. Then I tried to actually assault the Citadel instead of get around it. Finally, I found challenges appropriate to my level, and ultimately fought through the Las Vegas sewers through a painful war of attrition. When all was said and done, I was proud to have beaten that game. One summer, I played Wasteland over and over and over again, resetting the game world and keeping my characters. I had it down pat, and could cut shortcuts to beat the final area in no time at all. By the time the summer was over, my characters were a group of grizzled veterans who could walk into Vegas and beat the Scorpitron apart with their bare hands.

Years later, I was excited to hear about Fallout, the spiritual successor to Wasteland. Sure, there had been the Wasteland sequel Fountain of Dreams, but we'd all like to forget that one. Fallout 1 and Fallout 2 both came out during my initial time at drewuniversity as a student, and I played through the latter in my quadmate's room while he and his girlfriend watched television. From the epic intro, I was hooked.

Beautifully stylized, full of the irreverent Wasteland humor, and open-ended in the way only the best of Ultimas were. Slaughter bad guys across the field as a sniper, sneak in and turn their own guns against them, talk your way past them, go in guns blazing, send your faithful allies in, whatever. You got to explore, come up with solutions to problems that might have been different than your friend also playing the game, and experience consequences for your actions. The endgame movies, telling you what happened to the local area due to what you did, were freakin' awesome.

The two games came out in the late nineties, then we waited. A long time. The dumbed-down tactics came out, which I enjoyed playing just because it was Fallout. We had our moments of hope. After Van Buren died, the population became angry. Moreso because all they had to play was a dumbed-down advertisement-filled console adventure game that seemed an insult to everything Fallout was in their minds. Oh were they pissed. Impossible to placate, probably. We got a teaser, the tenth anniversary passed, and today Fallout 3 is released.

The fanboys won't be pleased. I've already read their rabid angry comments on sites such as NMA. Every time someone complains about hardware issues or DRM or their game crashing, the angry rabble yells a bit more. Even a seemingly loving tribute such as this one is picked apart for its factual errors and the narrator not sounding excited enough. Even if Fallout 3 was released with the ability to fix the economy, peak oil, and climate change? They would still be pissed that some plot element they thought was cool from Van Buren was left out (or included (because they're impossible to please)).

While rabid fanboy graye is probably shirking work to play his copy today, my Amazon exclusive collector's edition doesn't arrive until Halloween. And it's arriving a bit too close to WotLK. But I'll give it a chance, expecting no more than fun, yet secretly hoping for a game that at least tries to follow the theme of the originals. There's a shot that might happen, and Bethesda has proven their ability to do open-ended well. Worst case scenario, I've already played this. And just like watching Episode 1 after seeing the Star Wars Holiday Special, things just don't seem that bad once you've sunk that low. If things are that bad, I might just forgive Molyneux and give Fable 2 a shot.

Current Location: Drew University, Madison, NJ
Feeling: hopeful hopeful

Chorus of 44 demons || Preach it
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kingfox From: kingfox Date: October 28th, 2008 06:22 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
There's always the console version, if you've got one of those!
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From: graye Date: October 28th, 2008 06:41 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
I'm working!

But tonight?

Tonight, War never changes.
kingfox From: kingfox Date: October 28th, 2008 06:45 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
I'll let you know how Felmyst is.
abmann From: abmann Date: October 28th, 2008 06:49 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
I was pleased to learn today I mixed the US and Europe release dates. Yay getting it earlier than expected!

Edited at 2008-10-28 06:49 pm (UTC)
kingfox From: kingfox Date: October 28th, 2008 08:21 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
Let me know how you like it.
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agentorrange From: agentorrange Date: October 28th, 2008 08:23 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
Molyneux always kind of amazed me, he's kind of like the industry's own Jack Thompson or just a fat kid continually belly flopping for every increasing heights at the local pool.

I still find it fairly amazing that Fable came out a year after KOTOR. Still one of the best RPGs I've ever played. KOTOR that is.

Edited at 2008-10-28 08:25 pm (UTC)
kingfox From: kingfox Date: October 28th, 2008 08:25 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
Excited for The KotOR MMO?
alex_adventures From: alex_adventures Date: October 28th, 2008 08:49 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
I fully expect to skip food and sleep for a substantial period once this comes out. Not quite as much as the glory days of Fallout 2, natch, but enough to do damage to my puny mortal form.
kingfox From: kingfox Date: October 29th, 2008 10:36 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
I fear for my girlfriend, my job, my World of Warcraft guild, and my health.
From: the_azure_storm Date: October 28th, 2008 10:02 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
Would you recommend console or computer version?
kingfox From: kingfox Date: October 28th, 2008 10:05 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
Depends on your computer.

If you've got a smoking gaming rig, go for the computer version if you don't mind the DRM fears.

If you've got a sweet 1080 HDTV, get the console version.
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kingfox From: kingfox Date: October 29th, 2008 03:44 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
Considering how much more picky than I you normally are, insofar as games and movies in particular, this gives me hope.

But I'll be waiting to hear your take on the combat system.
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whymercy From: whymercy Date: October 30th, 2008 04:03 am (UTC) (Hard link)
Dave got it today so he's been playing it all night. I guess it was supposed to come Thursday but arrived a day early. He got some collector's edition which had a watch? lunchbox? Very neat indeed. Game seems good so far although I just watched tonight.
kingfox From: kingfox Date: October 31st, 2008 04:15 pm (UTC) (Hard link)
Mine was supposed to arrive Friday, arrived yesterday instead. Spent all night Tuesday in WoW, Wednesday in Fable, and Thursday in Fallout.

It is a sheer act of will that's bringing me out this weekend. jedimentat already offered to let me stay home for the weekend and catch up on games instead of going to parties. It was tempting.
Chorus of 44 demons || Preach it