Dogmeat will be your faithful companion during your quest
Dogmeat will be your faithful companion during your quest

Dogmeat will be your faithful companion during your quest

It'll take something pretty special to follow The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Bethesda Softworks' must-own next-gen RPG ushered in the new generation of consoles spectacularly well, offering hundreds of hours of gameplay in a world impossible to imagine only a few years ago. Its success, though, must have put some pressure on the developer. With a legion of new fans and a hardcore army of long-time followers, only something of truly epic proportions could follow Oblivion. It's a good job Bethesda had Fallout 3 up its sleeve then.

For Fallout 3 to have the success of Oblivion it's going to have to be more than a game for hardcore fans. Vault 101 and Pip boy mean nothing to most people, and they didn't to me either. This didn't stop the game, demoed by Bethesda's Peter Hines, looking extremely promising and very different to the fantasy setting of Oblivion.

The game starts, strangely enough, at your birth, inside Vault 101 - an underground facility sealed off from the post-apocalyptic world. Your birth is actually a clever way for the game to handle character creation. It's all completely in-game (you can press A to cry) and you're asked to choose whether you wish to play as a boy or a girl and what your name is. As your father picks you up (played by Liam Neeson, the only confirmed voice talent in the game) you can't quite make out his face, but again, this is a trick employed to get you to create your character. His face will resemble your own, so as soon as you're done sculpting your appearance his face comes into view. There are complications with the birth, resulting in the death of your mother, leaving you in the care of your father.

Time skips forward one year. You're now a toddler, walking around in a play area. Again, this is all in-game, and a disguised tutorial. Your father calls you over, so you slowly stumble over to him, pressing A to shout out "Dadda". It's incredibly immersive, and serves to familiarise new players with the controls in a non-threatening situation. Dad soon leaves, giving you time to wander about freely in the room, before finding a book called 'You're Special'. Reading it with your father allows you to choose your 'Specials', your base character attributes.

'Your father has left the vault, and you go after him, putting you face to face with the monsters that now roam the earth.'

You're then whisked forward in time once more, this time to your tenth birthday party. In the vault ten-year-olds gain responsibility and that means you're given a Pip boy 3000 - the gadget that acts as your in-game menu. Again, although completely in-game and under your control, the party acts as an intro to the game's conversation system. Peter chooses to lie when asked a question, but our character's conversation stats are low, meaning the NPC can see straight through him. As you progress through the game you'll increase your stats in key abilities, allowing you to tackle situations in different ways. At the age of 10 lying isn't something you're particularly good at.

This marked the end of our time in the vault, with Peter skipping on to life outside in the desolated Washington D.C.. Your father has left the vault, and you go after him, putting you face to face with the monsters that now roam the earth. You won't be alone though, with friendly dog Dogmeat being your faithful companion - if you treat him well. Dogmeat can be sent off to find items for you, but he isn't immune to the dangers of the wasteland. If you send him into an area and he gets into trouble, he could die - gone from the game forever. It certainly seems like a brave move on Bethesda's part, putting the dog's life in your hands, but we're yet to see how awkward it'll be to constantly keep him out of harm's way.

On to the dangers you'll face then. During our demo these came in the form of mutants and Ghouls. Super mutants are your biggest foe in the game, with super mutant strongholds being set up across the wasteland. You'll also face Ghouls (humans exposed to extreme amounts of radiation), with one particular variant being so full of radiation that it glows. How easily you spot these enemies depends on your perception stat, with high level characters seeing enemies on their radar much sooner than beginners.

Those super mutants often face an unpleasant end

Those super mutants often face an unpleasant end

You of course need to take these enemies down. All combat in the game is stat based, but you can choose to play using a real-time system if you wish. Menu-driven combat is activated through the Vault-Tec Assisted Targeting System, or V.A.T.S.. From here you can see what chance you have of hitting a certain part of an enemy and how many action points you have. Each attack move costs action points, so you can only string together a certain amount of attacks. Over time these points will be regenerated, but you may need to switch to the action-point-free real-time mode if your targeted attacks aren't sufficient.

There's far more to weapons combat than just targeting an enemy and pressing fire. For one, weapons can take damage and jam during use, meaning you need to keep them in tip-top condition if you're entering a dangerous area. You can also acquire schematics for special weapon variations of each gun in the game - although these will take some finding. One area, set in what looked like trenches, saw numerous grenade traps. Peter was able to avoid them, but the pursuing super mutants weren't so lucky. Fallout 3 isn't a game for kids, so expect plenty of gore too, with limbs flying off in all directions.

Despite the lengthy demo, it still seems as if we've only seen a fraction of what the final game will have to offer. Bethesda is currently targeting an autumn 2008 release on Xbox 360, PS3 and PC, although it seems as though it won't ship until everyone is completely happy with it. There's no denying its potential to be a grittier, more action heavy RPG than Oblivion, but until we get some extensive hands-on time, it's hard to say if it'll be just as epic.

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Lollipop's Avatar
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Lollipop

No offence to anyone but most of us play games like Oblivion because this are the best on the market at this time ..

what is wrong with wanting a really good game once in a while ?!?!
and why not make this game Fallout , the ONE game for open minded players who are looking in a game for more the just bashing someones head off , but they still have the option to do so !
Posted 14:38 on 15 May 2008
sanya's Avatar
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sanya

Fallout 3 First Look
Posted 13:31 on 11 May 2008
Anxious Waiter's Avatar
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Anxious Waiter

Wow, stop your crying!!! If you don't like the game, don't buy it or make your own freaking game.......or maybe you could start by moving out of your parent's basement or getting that all too coveted GED :D

But seriously, why don't we wait to see what happens. Bethesda has been good at least making something a bit different and new, which is something that isn't often made these days (shooters, shooters, shooters.....) Give'm a chance and then start complaining if you don't like it..........truth is, Oblivion sold well, so judgments of Bethesda's Oblivion are based on fact......rather than two or three "fanboys." GIVE 'M A CHANCE
Posted 18:08 on 01 May 2008
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FallenDreamL

And... we don't always have to shoot our way through quests do we?

If we are skilled in charisma or stealing... we can talk our way through things or sneak, picklock and steal our way through things right?
Posted 10:11 on 30 April 2008
FallenDreamL's Avatar
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FallenDreamL

I recommand...

Fallout 3 to be... >>>> DIFFERENT <<<< then Oblivion

* Elder of Scroll series = Real-time fighting*
* Fallout series = Tactial turned-base fighting *

I don't understand why Bethesda Softworks wants to make every game series to follow HIS way and not the Original Fallout Fan's way. For you hardcore lovers, yeah your in luck... bethesda softworks is making games your way... ALL the games your way which they even plan to change the all-time originally wonderful game with Turn-Based into a Oblivion with miniguns...

But I believe that this is not fair for the loyal Fallout Fans, the turn-based game should stay turn based.

For hardcore fans, if fallout 3 will stay turned-base as it always been and popular with...
You can always play another Real-Time shooting RPG like stalker or whatever...

Bethesda Softworks... please consider my proposal... if you are willing to try to win both sides of this debate, why not... before the start of the game you give us the choice to play [Turn-Based or Real-Time] game?

Lastly... your not planning to make 90% of the enemies mutants and ghouls are you? In the original fallout, the enemies consists of aliens, deathclaws and more are even just humans who gets on our nerves too...

I know without you, there won't even be a Fallout 3, but please just consider my proposal so that it could be truly a wonder game as it's series originally has been and you can truly be statisfied if you really could make it happen...

PS: Graphics is 3rd,
Personailzation of character must come in 1st
And make the storylines, and side quests make us feel like there's really the stories sadness and sorrows of post-nuclear people's lives losing their loved ones and how they feel fear.
Posted 10:04 on 30 April 2008
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Anonymous

"It'll take something pretty special to follow The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Bethesda Softworks' must-own next-gen RPG ushered in the new generation of consoles spectacularly well, offering hundreds of hours of gameplay in a world impossible to imagine only a few years ago. Its success, though, must have put some pressure on the developer. With a legion of new fans and a hardcore army of long-time followers, only something of truly epic proportions could follow Oblivion. It's a good job Bethesda had Fallout 3 up its sleeve then."

Tom, you've got something brown on your nose... Seriously, are you paid to be so flattering? Oblivion was a good game, but it had a lot of heavy flaws behind its shiny shiny pretty graphics. Generic and uninteresting setting (a big let down compared to Morrowind), a total lack of political intrigue despite the events (a big let down compared to Daggerfall: no emperor and no heir, the counts should have motivations other than speleology or knowing why there's an orc in the castle!), rushed and badly told questlines (so full of plot holes it's not even funny, years after there are still people wondering why the bad guy of the story could wear the Amulet of Kings)...

The hard-core fans of previous Bethesda games have been the most angered by the disappointment that Oblivion was. And the Fallout fans... Well, they're not even giving Bethesda a chance to prove itself, and frankly I can't blame them much.
Posted 14:00 on 28 April 2008
wookie 2112's Avatar
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wookie 2112

I liked oblivion still play it to this day, and I loved fallout still play it to this day,
even if fallout 3 is oblivion with guns (wich it isn't) it's going to be a new fallout game wich makes me very excited because how many times can you play the original before you want something more
Posted 19:47 on 27 April 2008
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A Fallout Fan

I agree with the poster above, there's not many fans of Fallout that likes Oblivion, and to quote the reviewer ; "Each attack move costs action points, so you can only string together a certain amount of attacks. Over time these points will be regenerated, but you may need to switch to the action-point-free real-time mode if your targeted attacks aren't sufficient." This is not what I want from a game in the Fallout series, it should be turn-based like the prequels, granted it may cause problems in a 3D environment... Well needless to say, I'm not satisfied with the look of the game so far, I'm one of those fans that just want another Fallout 1-2, in classy old 2D with a brand new storyline...
Posted 01:55 on 27 April 2008
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Anonymous

About complaining - I think that it's the review(s) that goes like "Bethesda's Oblivion was good => FO3 will propably be good as well" irritates poeple. Hard to imagine FO fan who likes Oblivion.... really.

Ps. I hope this game will deserve the name "Fallout"
Posted 23:44 on 25 April 2008
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Taldrezam

This game is a must have for anyone who enjoys dark humour and the lessons to be learned from human hubris, All in splatterhouse 3D! The first two games opened up the realm of moral ambiguity and the first true sense of right and wrong hand didn't give you a super-human main character. Just some poor guy who was pigeon holed. I won't lie at being concerned about game mechanics , but its safe to say the Bethesda has the story element down already and as long as they take some ques from the Tactics game on integrating real-time with Turn-based. This will be more than worth my time.
Posted 23:28 on 25 April 2008
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Rostifur

Agreed, without bethesda there would be no Fallout three. I loved the first two and tactics, I thought they were amazing games but they only had a cult following and for games to survive in this day and age they must do more then appeal to a select few. Quit your complaining and ignore the game if your that mad.

PS looks great to me..
Posted 20:58 on 25 April 2008
Anonymous's Avatar
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Anonymous

Shut up, please your all so annoying just adimit it it looks good and most likely will be good so get over it you bunch of babies
Posted 13:29 on 24 April 2008
Iain_McC's Avatar

Iain_McC

If I had any confidence in Bethesda's ability to create an RPG levelling system that's not utterly broken, I'd be excited about this. Unfortunately, I don't, so I'm not...
Posted 13:00 on 23 April 2008
willofiron's Avatar
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willofiron

i think we should give beseda a chance at least... i mean oblivion was good, it had massive flaws though. so as long as they listen to the gamers and change them we should be okay, since them seem to be staying close to the source material.

in the end tho, if it sucks we can ignore it like we did fallout tatics carnt we?
so lets just prey its good

Posted 05:44 on 23 April 2008
ping's Avatar
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ping

ditto!
Posted 23:09 on 22 April 2008

Game Stats

Release Date: 31/10/2008
Developer: Bethesda Softworks
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Genre: RPG
No. Players: One
Rating: BBFC 18
Site Rank: 1,032
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