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The Ramblings of a Mad Man From Outer Space

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LONG BLOG

An underappreciated aspect of Fallout 3

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Fallout 3 is a game that is both hailed by critics as being an inventive, enjoyable title that pushed the boundaries of what games could do through its interactivity and player influence and looked down upon for limiting player choice and obscuring choices of morality through a Good/Evil filter. Countless blogs have been written discussing the combat, story, glitches, and ending of the game. Hopefully this blog will help to flesh out an underappreciated aspect of Fallout 3.

About a week ago I began my first playthrough of Fallout 3. I had no prior knowledge of the Fallout universe and I was expecting the game to play like a revamped Oblivion set on a post apocalyptic Earth. That assumption proved to be false after several hours of play. The game had a much slower pace to it than Oblivion did. The world itself had more personality. Already I was immersed and hungering for more, thinking about the game while I was busy working or writing.

The ending to Fallout 3 had already been spoiled to me by numerous episodes of Podtoid and Reverend Anthony's most recent Rev Rant. Originally, I was disappointed that a game with so much potential was failing to live up to it. Now that I've spent more time with Fallout 3, I think that the transgressions committed thanks to bad writing and simple storytelling are forgivable.

There is a depth and complexity to Fallout 3's world that isn't presented in an obvious way. Instead of being force fed to the player, as we've become so accustomed to our video games doing, stories are told through implied visuals and hidden meanings. Every time I entered a new empty home I was left to wonder what had happened to the family that lived there. I'd see a skeleton lying in a bathtub and flashes of suicide would run through my mind. A prevailing sense of hopelessness and despair seeps out of every corner of every room in Fallout 3.

Another layer of complexity to the atmosphere of Fallout 3 is found in the people who inhabit it. The fake happiness and sincerity over being trapped in the iron prison that is Megaton or the desperate bid for survival each of the Brotherhood Outcasts displays. The people of Fallout 3 are too afraid to move on from the way the world was before the war. Too afraid to give up on the one thing that will forever be beautiful to them. Most don't know what the world was like before the apocalypse, and from the looks of it, most don't seem to care. Just imagining a world where violence does not reign supreme, where death does not lurk around the corner for every man and woman, is enough for those who inhabit the Wasteland.

I'm likely reading into this game too much, and I think it's unfortunate that Bethesda couldn't come up with a better title than Fallout 3. I was getting really damned tired of typing that out.
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About Krowone of us since 6:05 PM on 08.15.2008



Favorite games:
Breath of Fire III
Breath of Fire IV
Chrono Trigger
Chrono Cross
The Elder Scrolls III: Morrowind
Final Fantasy series
Gradius III
The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask
The Legend of Zelda: Wind Waker
Mega Man series
Mega Man Legends
Mega Man Legends 2
Mega Man X series
No More Heroes
No More Heroes 2: Desperate Struggle
Paper Mario
Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door
Persona 3
Persona 4
Phantasy Star II
Phantasy Star IV
Pikmin II
Pokemon Gold
R-Type III
Shadow Hearts: Covenant
An assortment of other games I'm forgetting

I'm an aspiring writer, musician, and artist. That doesn't necessarily mean I'm very talented in any of those fields, but that won't stop me from throwing the titles around. I'm presently a high school graduate who has no idea what he wants to do with his life.

Contact me. I'm bored.

AIM: clumsybigfoot
MSN: [email protected]
Gtalk: [email protected]

(Last Updated Saturday October 2nd, 2010)
Xbox LIVE:Clumsybigfoot
PSN ID:Clumzibigfoot
Steam ID:clumzibigfoot


 

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