Thursday, July 16, 2009

Fallout 3 - Surving the Post-Nuclear Capitol Wasteland

Yeah, I haven't posted much in a while, but after three travel weekends, (Origins, Steamboat Springs, and a day trip to Ogden) I'm taking things easy for a while. I like to spend a weekend bumming around the house now and then.

The only things of interest happening right now are work related, and I can't discuss those any more than this: We discovered an expensive problem with something, and there another thing going on right now that were doing to expand our service, but working with the other company involved is proving to be frustrating for several reasons.

So instead, I'll discuss a little PS3 game I've been playing in the evenings and on weekends called Fallout 3.

Here's the deal: The story is sort of an alternate time line of 1900's history where WWII never happened, and instead, the United States gets a face full of Nuclear Warheads detonated on them, mostly in the Capitol. in the 1940s or 1950s. Millions die, but some of the population make it into underground bunkers called Vaults (Built by the Vault-Tec corporation). About a hundred years pass since the apocalypse, and you decided to go out for a stroll in the devastated DC area, hearby named The Capital Wasteland.

For rest of the game you walk around shooting mutants and Mad-Max Style Raiders, while trying to scrounge up ammo, Medical supplies, food and water, and Nuka-Cola Bottle Caps, which are the defacto currency of the Wasteland.
The Art direction is interesting, with 1950 style advertising and naming conventions displayed all around, music that I'd have to say is from the 1940s and early 1950s, and your wrist-computer (big, clunky, and named the Pip-Boy) prominently displays cute illustrations involving this guy to the right.

I'm not going to painstakingly explain why the game is amusing, so I'll just leave it at this little anecdote. As you progress in the game, you may choose special abilities that suit your tastes and play style. These abilities (called Perks) have odd names and descriptions. There's the one called Lady Killer, that gives you some unique dialogue options when dealing with the opposite sex, and deals %10 more damage to female enemies.

Some of these perks are only acquired through in-game actions. I found one today, after I successfully performed a speech where I convinced the perky inventor lady that she ought to stop writing her Wasteland Survival Guide that she's been working all her life. It took the wind out of her sails, but she agreed, and I got the perk Dream Crusher. The description: "Something about your prescience dampens others' desires to exceed. Any enemy's chance of getting a critical hits is reduced by 50%." A game that rewards you not just for saving the world, or shoot things, but dashing the hopes for somebody's life's work. That's just deviously clever.


ninjaterp said...

Clever, yes! But your virtual mother would be SO ASHAMED! But there's probably extra points for that, too, huh? And this is how society collapses, with the sound of virtual Dream Crushing!

Benjamin said...

You know there's an expansion for that game where you can travel to "The Pitt", right?