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Thread: Sequel Slump: Fallout 3 - Editorial

  1. #1
    Dread News Editor RPGamer Staff Fowl Sorcerous's Avatar
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    Angry Sequel Slump: Fallout 3 - Editorial

    War may never change, but franchises can. Not always for the better. Sometimes you gets shallowness and terrible plot contrivances. But war, that never changes.

    you all pants-bombed three dog admit it.

  2. #2
    I didn't blow up Three Dog, but I did steal his bandana. It's a pick-pocketing trick.

    Frankly, I'm just happy the franchise was given another chance to shine. I never played the originals, but I never liked half-serious, joke filled storylines anyway. I was on an Elder Scrolls kick and a different setting helped make it all feel fresh again (I'm having trouble getting back into Skyrim simply because it feels like I've played it already). Sure, the story was a little blah, and you can actually start it from the halfway point, but it's better that they brought the game back, with great resounding success I might add, so they can worry about making it right later. And Obsidian did pretty well with New Vegas (I like it more than F3).

    And while I agree many aspects of the game are ridiculous, I find it even more ridiculous there are people who walk into a sci-fi/fantasy setting and then expect it to be realistic. Why stop at the water and bullets? Radiation sure as heck doesn't create Super Mutants or Ghouls or Mirelurks. And since when can you take a giant concrete hammer to the head and survive it? Or a bullet? And laser and plasma guns are totally stupid because, like, they SO don't exist yet.

    I'm sorry, but if your measure of quality storytelling is based entirely on getting all of the facts straight, then you shouldn't be playing video games. Or reading. Or watching movies. You just don't get it, plain and simple, and you're ruining the enjoyment of those who do. I'll put up with the inaccuracies and continuity errors until it torpedoes the story dead in the heart (such as Wolverine entirely regenerating from nothing more than a drop of his blood), but until then, I'd much rather enjoy whatever story the developer is trying to relate to me. It's SO much more fun that way. I mean, come on, life is stressful enough. You really want to find more reasons to stress about stuff?

    Note that while I'm replying to Fowl, I'm speaking generally. I don't believe he is one of those buzz-kill jerks who plays video games with a stick up his butt.
    Last edited by TG Barighm; 03-25-2013 at 09:04 PM.

  3. #3
    Member Kiralyn's Avatar
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    Yeah, I know it isn't Fallout 1 (never did get around to 2), but...... I still enjoyed FO3 more than FO:New Vegas. Mostly because (as someone who just played FO1 once, years before; rather than a Huge Fan™), I approached it as a "Bethesda game" rather than a Fallout game. So I went in expecting not-so-strong story, basic characters..... and an amazing "open world explore" experience. And I got that. Just like with the TES games I've played, most of my characters don't even bother with the Main Quest after the first playthrough - they just wander around the ruins seeing what Interesting Thing might be beyond that pile o' rubble.

    And then I made the mistake of expecting the same thing from FO:NV, just because it used the FO3 engine. Which was foolish of me (and unfair to the game), since it was made by completely different people. So we got a sorta-standard generally-linear ("step off The Path and a deathclaw/cazador/ghoul will eat your face!") WRPG that happened to be in an open-world engine. Better story/characters/choice, but terrible exploration - almost any location of note was tied to some sort of quest, and many locations were just plain small & boring. The world might have made more "sense" from the standpoint of Hey! They're rebuilding! But it wasn't as fun.

  4. #4
    Better story/characters/choice, but terrible exploration - almost any location of note was tied to some sort of quest, and many locations were just plain small & boring.
    I can't say I agree because there were way more unique and powerful items to find in NV, but I can see why some people feel that way. New Vegas was definitely designed to be more RPG-ish where levels, better gear, and careful planning generally prevailed over raw headshooting ability, which I preferred over F3's "flattened" stats. system (pick the same key perks over and over again, pick any decent weapon, level up the correlated weapon skill, and headshot your way to victory for the rest of the game). NV was also shooting for something a little more realistic and the terrain made it difficult to just walk in one direction and find something. F3 had cooler locations, and they were fun the first time around, but there wasn't nearly as much to find in F3 besides skill manuals. There were also more "challenge thyself" locations in F3 where you could find powerful items way too early if you could figure out a way into a dangerous location without getting insta-killed. NV's only challenging bit is figuring out a way into Vegas at Lv.1 (not hard at all, actually). Everything else is nigh impossible without dozens of Stealth Boys (haven't played NV as much though).

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    Dread News Editor RPGamer Staff Fowl Sorcerous's Avatar
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    I never said the game was bad because it was realistic. I said it was bad because it stupid, contrived, frustrating and lacking in verisimilitude. over the course of a story playthrough the game forces you to:
    • dance to the tune of sociopathic scientist (or do an annoying puzzle)
    • run errands for an obnoxious 12 year old to open a door througha settlement that by no means should exist 200 years after the bomb (or burn a perk)
    • get dragged into the non-engaging non-conflict between President Evil and the Brotherhood of Doesn't do ****, neither of which are in character for the previous games
    • forced into a binary decision over a roomful radiation that shouldn't even happen as a radiation immune companion watches (or spend 15 dollars to avoid that element only to be railroaded for 4 more hours of content)

    and as you sit an ponder each new morsel of frustration a Dante Hicks-style complaint arise from the back of your mind 'all this for a problem that should even exist'.

    The fact that the pivot upon which the plot turn can be debunked by wiki-how doesn't ruin the whole game but the second something bugs you that detail is there rub salt in the wound.

    the 200 years since the bombs is an element that is forever dragging me out of my sense of immersion. At this point the game should be trope checking Canticle Leibowitz more often than Mad Max. Think about everything in fallout 3 ask yourself why this is and how it could be, if 4 out of 5 times the answer is 'the designers thought it would be cool' your setting is terrible.

    It's not that I have no sense of willing suspension of disbelief, I watch giant robot cartoons. Minovsky particles make sense, hell super-mutants being the result of an irradiated sample of the FEV virus can slide because supermutants are neat, but 200 year-old twinkies don't fly with me when there's no reason for them to work other than designers being unwilling to set a sequel in similar time-frame to the original.

  6. #6
    I never said the game was bad because it was UNrealistic.
    That is ultimately what your arguments equate to and I'm not sure why you would see it any other way. Everything you've said includes some variant of what should be possible and what shouldn't be based on the principle of what things should be like after an atomic bomb and 200 years of time. If you feel every tiny little thing in the game needs some kind of explanation to justify its context, okay, I can accept sci-fi is meant to have some scientific grounding...to a degree. These days so many devs. spend so much time keeping their butts clean they forget to make the story and characters INTERESTING, and it's very difficult to be original while trying to make sure everything satisfies some scientific law or whatever. That said, as Kiralyn said, F3 was better than NV because the locations were cooler. I agree they were cooler.

    If you're just talking about the game not being able to recognize your ability to overcome certain challenges by way of sound decision making (such as having rad. res. in that final scene), then you didn't make it very clear. You justified your arguments with stuff about "this" and "that" not being possible "because this shouldn't be like this after 200 years", not "because the game talks about freedom yet restricts your decisions for the sake of story". Now THAT I can agree with.
    Last edited by TG Barighm; 03-26-2013 at 02:57 PM.

  7. #7
    I realize that this is set in a more real-world situation, but why are much more non-sense JRPG plots are easier to suspend disbelief for, but a game like Fallout 3 doesn't get the same respect? While you bring up obvious good points when taking the real-world into account, we are also talking about a world that was stuck in the 1950s for decades without ever really advancing their technology any more in what we would consider obvious ways. Honestly, the points you bring up here for sequel fatigue bother me much less than virtually the entire plot of say Final Fantasy X, or any Kingdom Hearts game. We accept that Deus ex Machina is the major plot device used in pretty much all JRPGs, so I can accept in this fake parallel Earth in the Fallout universe lived in the 1950s for several decades and had more than just twinkies that could survive a nuclear explosion, and that their physics may be slightly different from ours resulting in irradiated water after 200 years.
    Last edited by smacd; 03-26-2013 at 07:38 PM.

  8. #8
    複線ドリフト!! RPGamer Staff Quin's Avatar
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    Don't forget the nuclear powered pintos.

    befriend (v.): to use mecha-class beam weaponry to inflict grievous bodily harm on a target in the process of proving the validity of your belief system.

  9. #9
    Member Kiralyn's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TG Barighm View Post
    I can't say I agree because there were way more unique and powerful items to find in NV, but I can see why some people feel that way. New Vegas was definitely designed to be more RPG-ish where levels, better gear, and careful planning generally prevailed over raw headshooting ability, which I preferred over F3's "flattened" stats. system (pick the same key perks over and over again, pick any decent weapon, level up the correlated weapon skill, and headshot your way to victory for the rest of the game). NV was also shooting for something a little more realistic and the terrain made it difficult to just walk in one direction and find something. F3 had cooler locations, and they were fun the first time around, but there wasn't nearly as much to find in F3 besides skill manuals. There were also more "challenge thyself" locations in F3 where you could find powerful items way too early if you could figure out a way into a dangerous location without getting insta-killed. NV's only challenging bit is figuring out a way into Vegas at Lv.1 (not hard at all, actually). Everything else is nigh impossible without dozens of Stealth Boys (haven't played NV as much though).
    Hmm. I've seen people say similar things about the "exploration" in Oblivion & Skyrim compared to Morrowind.... that they explore to find powerful objects/etc. Personally, the thing I enjoy about exploring in Beth games like Fallout 3 is - just the places themselves. Reading the stories on the terminals, seeing the arrangements of "clutter" that tell things about what happened there, etc. Unique items? Skill books? Yeah, I suppose those are in some of those places, and it can be nice to find them, but that's not why I want to see what's in that ruin, or over that hill. That's what I mean when I say that NV's locations were more "boring".

  10. #10
    A Serious Man Drav's Avatar
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    All the hate I had for this game washed away when New Vegas came out. Bethesda have my blessing to suck forever as long as they let Obsidian make the real Fallout games afterwards.

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    Dread News Editor RPGamer Staff Fowl Sorcerous's Avatar
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    Smacd, you do realize i'm the guy that will rip the hell out of your average jrpg setting right? i've got a whole thing about nomura's setting design in the percolator.

  12. #12
    Bethesda have my blessing to suck forever as long as they let Obsidian make the real Fallout games afterwards.
    I doubt Obsidian will want to work for free again.

  13. #13
    A Serious Man Drav's Avatar
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    They're dead.

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