Critical dialog

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Bartoneus from Critical-Hits made an interesting article with his experiences on the Fallout 3 media gathering, so Brother None at NMA interviewd him, since he had first hand contact with the game demo. Here are some excerpts:

VATS. Ok, so I can pause to aim. Does that mean where I aim in RT doesn’t matter, i.e. if I click on the head I’d still hit the torso, in RT? Also, when in VATS, can any actions be taken, or is it just cuing actions to happen?

Correct that VATS is a pause to aim idea, but from what I saw and heard at the event the Realtime play is like any other realtime game with shooting, if you aim and actually hit the head the same effects would apply as a called shot. Again, I’m not certain, and anything about that is conjecture based on the gameplay that was shown. From what I can tell, VATS is purely a system for queuing actions and that is all, we did not get to see if your inventory can be accessed/used while paused or if that would use action points also.


Shooting in RT slows down AP recharging. What about moving or other actions?

Not sure about this one, honestly in the demo Todd was pausing every time he really wanted to fight and only a few times did he have to run’n’gun in realtime and that seemed like just when a Mutant got the jump on him. He had modified the system a bit to help the demo along faster so I don’t know how much of this was final mechanics and how much was for demonstration purposes.

Dialogue. Matt Miller caused a stir on this with his remark that “the tree is closer to Oblivion.” So how does it look (visually, like Oblivion)? The PC has full lines or keywords? Any sign of long NPC replies? Any hint (probably too short a demo) of expansive branching dialogue?

This really tests my memory on the specifics of the demo shown, but I’ll try my best to remember exactly. Looking back at Oblivion your choices in dialogue were things like “rumors, cathedral, Glarthir, etc.” The visual look of dialogue is similar to Oblivion in how it zooms in on the NPC’s face and where the text is displayed, but from the short bits we viewed it looks like PC respones will be phrases much like from Fallout 1, and typically it looked as if there were serious answers, angry answers, and funny answers all mixed in. The dialogue trees definitely looked like they had longer NPC replies also, and there was definitely a HINT of expansive / branching dialogue but really with the demo not enough was shown to say. From how Emil and Todd talked about it, I imagine the level of depth and detail shown throughout the demo expands to every part of the game.

I got a very good sense of “Fallout” from the dialogue shown, and strongly feel that this is one thing the people at Bethsoft are putting a lot of effort towards getting right.

Well I never thought of seeing a Fallout game with Real Time first person combat with a Matrix/Predator/Max Payne thing that allows called shots, but on the other hand the dialog stuff is definitely good news.

Speaking of Critical-Hits they have an editorial on the “ridiculous critiques” made by fallout fans to Fallout 3, that raises some interesting issues, leading me to comment a bit:

“In the meantime, seriously, insulting BethSoft employees, or wishing them to die?”

Yes things go too far some times, I got a kid that made threats to Steve Meister to apologize to him, and the most serious stuff is moved from the topics at NMA to the closed forum, and still silliness happens many times.

Still the reverse happens a lot too, not only insults but wishes that Fallout fans should be terminated, annihilated and similar terms. It’s on Gamespy, Quarter to Three, Something Awfull, even a couple of times at Gamespot. Hell I don’t have a serious harsh exchange of words with anyone from Bethesda since 2004 and try not to stir much drama, and I still get hate comments on the blog and Meebo, got my kids dragged into insults against me on the Codex.

And you probably don’t know, but NMA got obscene pics being posted all over the place and serious DoSS attacks that made the site unavailable, all work of Oblivion fans from Penny Arcade and Something Awfull, so being unreasonable isn’t a monopoly of a few Fallout fans.

There’s another factor that makes things worse, while, and against the perception of most fans on the Fansites, Bethesda devs do care about the input and worries of Fallout fans, at least many of them do, I know this for a fact, the Bethesda PR machine works with a strategy of disregarding and ignoring the Fansites. While I loved the idea of Critical Hits going to the media gathering (and your coverage was the most revealing and interesting, followed by IGN’s and Gamespy)still it’s strange that you were invited, while having less than a quarter daily unique hits than NMA (or even less), and NMA or DAC were barred from going there, when they had people ready to go, that live minutes away from Bethsoft.

This strategy is only making things worse, if they had showed the dialog to a few community members, for instance, then they wouldn’t have so many PR headaches and so many screams in their backyard door.

Hope this commentary brings something to the discussion, keep up the good work.

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40 thoughts on “Critical dialog

  1. so I can make the called shot to the head in real time, get all the same effects on the enemy and not be subject to the to hit %? How is that not rewarding twitch gameplay?

  2. From Bartoneus: If you don’t think a franchise can stand a technical transition into first person and retain the qualities of the original, you clearly haven’t played Metroid Prime.

    Someone give me the mail of this guy? I want to have a little conversation with him. I mean, WTF?=!”?!1!” KP”#*VC hktr.kçji First person is a technical issue? This guy clearly hasn’t played the first games, BECAUSE FALLOUT IS A FUCKING POINT AND CLICK GAME!!! It’s like saying StarCraft could go into Hidden&Dangerous style and stand it. Fuck it!

  3. Morbus you won’t get old if you don’t work on those stress levels :S

    I don’t like Metroid Prime, my kid has two versions of it and the thing is a bit mediocre, but he could make that point to games like GTA.

    Still we could make the point that other games that went with tech and gameplay upgrades turned into crapfests (Ultima IX, MOO3, X-Com-Enforcer) so that argument shouldn’t be taken as an absolute truth.

  4. Morbus: I have played Fallout 1 and 2. I welcome any “little” conversation you’d like to have on here, I will say that while the format of the old FO games is “point-and-click” that does not subject the entirety of everything that is Fallout to being such.

    Killzig: If your character’s gun skill and agility are high then the percentage for a headshot should be equal to or higher then your chances of hitting their head in realtime.

  5. thanks for clearing that up Barty. Now from what I understand about the demo narrative on the GI exclusive. The way they played the Megaton quest (to assplode the town) went point a – > dungeon crawl – > point b ka-boom. At any point did they show/hint at some sort of alternative to this quest solution (destroying the town) that didn’t involve dungeon crawling?

  6. I think the info given in the DAC interview is rather promising. I was concerned about the dialog but it appears that it is going in the right direction. I hope it continues. I’m still reserving judgement on VATS until I see more. I agree that a totally stats based system is needed. Again, I think KotOR should be the model. You can fight in realtime or pause but all your actions are based on your stats not the player’s reflexes.
    On the second section about the NMA threads, what’s the deal? I mean I love FO and played the first two games for hundreds of hours but I have a life and I’m not sending anyone hate mail over the new game. I hope it turns out great and if it doesn’t I just won’t buy it. Just like I didn’t buy either of the other two FO want-to-be spin-offs. I thik the people in this article need to follow our example. Let’s all show a little maturity and class here, OK.

  7. Killzig: I haven’t read/seen the GI exclusive stuff, but I don’t remember any part being a dungeon crawl. I’ll check those out and get back to you guys.

  8. From what Bart says, it is.

    Bart: re: the GI article said that to get the detonation solution the PC had to go under the sewers/subways and mow his way through enemies to the other side.

  9. For the record, I’ve said it each time, the bit about realtime shooting not based on skills is an ASSUMPTION of mine. It is based on seeing the game, but it could be wildly inaccurate.

    Killzig: Ah yes, he went through the metro but it didn’t look, feel, or seem like a “dungeon crawl” at all. There is no guarantee this is how it will turn out in the final play of the game, but Todd used the metro system to get into the city and avoid going through the wastelands. It felt more like progression of the story, because the metro led to the city, then a simple “dungeon crawl”.

  10. Multi Ringed Circus and Machiavellian Marketing

    All the potential players involved are as many as one allows.
    Pull back from a tight focus on ‘the news’ sites and see many magicians, clowns. and acrobats.
    Multitude of ring masters.
    Teh circus.

    After all the PR by Bethesda is launched and all the posturing by the professional game sites is choreographed,
    with the accompanying chorus of the full spectrum of independent and submissive fan sites,
    only the game in the box will be left to be played.

    FO3 will eventually be judged as a video game.

    The product will just have to stand on it’s own.

    Any misdirection,
    any unjustified blame dumped on any interested third parties is a sad tactic we know too well.
    We see it in American politics daily.
    We see it in the media as buzz that is pitched to sell ideas and products.
    Barring divine intervention, that possibility of absolutes, consider any buzz is *not* always good buzz.

    It’s Bethesda’s ‘best foot’ forward, so what shinola they wipe on or scrape off is their call.
    Expect the wide greeting smile, the firm handshake, and teh shiny shoes.
    Expect a few sliders and spit balls when batting at the pitch.
    It’s the politics of propaganda that hinders in the pretense of helping. It will be the Machiavellian Marketing that will ham string the product, and reveal the true value to the game consumer of the interested third parties, whether pro’s or peers.

    The politics of propaganda,

    it’s practiced by all players.

    The tactics of divide and conquer, and rank vilification are now routine tools to tilt ,
    to slant the perspective, the opinions. All out to sell and prosper.

    Will come a point in this continuum,

    the product will just have to stand on it’s own.

    The code of silence during development shows Bethesda has discipline.
    Possible their efforts will not be waisted.
    Possible the collaboration of focused vision will be offered to all players.
    Bethesda’s take on the RPG genre?
    Perhaps, FPS as conflict resolution, and world exploration. Over the shoulder and third person, gravy for the alternate paths. Activity circling a story that pulls together the RPG, and action rpg elements. The story and the many possible means to the end unfold, to that cinema’s fin’e and fade to credit’s.
    Perhaps, that’s too much to blend during this point in the Nex Gen Era.
    Nex Gen still only an eye’s gleam. No heir, no prodigy sired nor cloned.
    Perhaps the Beth dev’s bold claim of a living RPG forest of dialogue trees is just more Radiant AI.
    Perhaps, only, Oblivion With Guns.
    Some will be happy to squeeze this lemon for the lemonade, or the bitters of a more complex mixology, if it’s not lost in the sugar or shinola coating of Machiavellian Marketing.

    Bethesda might as well make FO 3 their FO, ”Bethesda’s Does FO”. Leave the ‘Debbie Does Dallas” smirks to the wicked among the web wits.

    Why rewrite history, when the goal is to MAKE history, and profit? ”Bethesda’s Does FO”

    Be bold and proud and let it all hang out, “‘Bethesda’s FO3, East Side PA Dues””, … whatever.

    A few qualifiers may suffice to clear the table of hidden agendas, false cues, silly little lies.

    Exit the Double Speak. Save it for Election 2008.

    Present the opportunity of seeing Bethesda’s vision, playing Bethesda’s version.

    The product will have to stand tall, in thonged fig leaf or full frontal commando,
    or Fall Out in limp pre coitus hype. Still only a gleam in a mind’s eye.

    4too

  11. that’s good to hear, Bart.

    did anyone get specifics on the conditions? (broken legs, dehydration, radiation) More specifically, how the nuke catapult/launcher will impact your rad count?

    can you give us an example of how that “interactive” character creation segment worked? What kind of questions did they ask you? IIRC, Republic/Revolution had a survey to start to determine your political alignment and Morrowind also asked you a series of questions to determine your class? Would you say it was similar to that or more freeform rather than trying to peg you into an RPG archetype?

    On the character sheets you saw did you notice any skills missing? Any new perks?

    On the item degradation. Is it possible to stem/slow this process beyond just stripping identical items for parts? Like some sort of “armorer” skill where you can clean/oil your gun regularly with some item kit (rather than a repair hammer) to slow this or keep your weapon functioning well even if it is beginning to degrade?

    did anyone ask if the crime and punishment system oblivion uses will reappear in a similar yet fractured way (given that different areas are controlled by different groups) ?

  12. Morbus you won’t get old if you don’t work on those stress levels :S

    Naw… I’m used to it, don’t worry. My keyboard is the most affected after all…

    Still we could make the point that other games that went with tech and gameplay upgrades turned into crapfests (Ultima IX, MOO3, X-Com-Enforcer) so that argument shouldn’t be taken as an absolute truth.

    No less. And don’t forget about Sonic. Although there’s little special to it in terms of gameplay, the spirit of the game is almost inexistent in the late “next-gen” version of it… -_- A shame really.

    Morbus: I have played Fallout 1 and 2. I welcome any “little” conversation you’d like to have on here, I will say that while the format of the old FO games is “point-and-click” that does not subject the entirety of everything that is Fallout to being such.

    I’m glad you came by 🙂 Now, back on the point, you’re certainly aware that games are not like movies. Unlike ALL the other media (not only movies, but music, books, et cetera), games introduce a new point that has to be taken seriously when we look at them: gameplay. Gameplay is the reason why the term “franchise” is so important in games. I’ve had a little article on standby for some time, and I’ll probably publish it in my site, so be free to stay tuned if you’re interested: megascore.biz. Meanwhile, I’ll explain a bit why there is such an important issue to franchises, and why they distinguish from series.

    Game franchises, like cinema series and franchises, have to take into consideration at least one essential part of the “thing”: setting. In games, we commonly call it “gameworld”. Game series, however, have to look at other things. Not only do they normally take into consideration the plot and the characters, but they also (have to) take into consideration gameplay. Lets look at some examples, shall we?

    Inside the Need for Speed franchise, we have multiple series, that may not be considered spin-offs themselves because the franchises’ spirit has widened with the time. So we have Hot Pursuit series (1 and 2), we have Underground series (1 and 2), and we even have other series of one single title (Most Wanted and Carbon). Of course we have the main series, which we simply call Need for Speed #.

    Ultima is the same thing (to use the example given by Brios). We have the big main series (Ultime #) and then we have separate (spin-off) series, like Ultima Underworld and Ultima Online. The same thing happens with Might and Magic (if I’m not mistaken) with the (now dead) main series (Might and Magic #), with Heroes of Might and Magic series (of which I’m a somewhat avid fan), and we have Dark Messiah of Might and Magic series (and possibly others) – this all if I’m not mistaken.

    So we have to ask ourselves a very important question: why do they need to make different series INSIDE a franchise, and how do they decide which game fits in which series. The answer is simple, and you probably already guessed it: gameplay. Gameplay is the factor that sets games apart from other already established medias, the factor that is the reason why a game fits into a series and why another doesn’t.

    To back that up, I will use a very simple and straightforward example: FIFA. FIFA, the franchise, has the main series: FIFA #. But there are spin-off separate series, that are set apart because of their gameplay. I’m referring to FIFA Manager series (an FM clone). It would be unthinkable to name FIFA Manager 2007 only by FIFA 2007. Why? Because of the gameplay. This is a drastic example (so drastic that both series are inside completely different subgenres), but I gets the point through (hoepfully).

    Fallout (the franchise) itself has different series. We have the main series, of course, with Fallout and Fallout 2, and then we have the POS series, with FOPOS (and the now thankfully canceled FOPOS2) and we have the Tactics series, with Fallout Tactics and the now canceled Fallout Tactics 2. Three series inside one single franchise. What is it that makes them BE of a single series? Setting, of course (even if raped). What is it that makes the BE of different series? You could say it’s their names (it wouldn’t be wrong), but we’re talking seriously here, so the correct answer is, of course, gameplay. Gameplay is the reason why Fallout Tactics is NOT Fallout 3, because Fallout Tactics DOESN’T play like Fallout in the wholeness of the thing: it’s a tactical RPG, not a character RPG anymore. The same happens with FOPOS. What is it that makes FOPOS’ be of a different series? Gameplay: it’s an action/adventure game, not a character RPG anymore.

    So this is all that matters in what concerns your sentence:

    If you don’t think a franchise can stand a technical transition into first person and retain the qualities of the original, you clearly haven’t played Metroid Prime.

    I certainly haven’t played Metroid Prime, but still I KNOW franchises can stand technical transitions, and even GAMEPLAY transitions. HOWEVER! However, what we are talking about here is a SERIES, and not a franchise. Fallout 3 is NAMED to be in the MAIN SERIES, and not in the Brotherhood of Steel series (where it should be). So what I really take out of your sentence is that you believe that Fallout main series can stand this kind of gameplay transitions. And I tell you: it can’t. As I said, that is like asking that The Sims 3 is a third person game without the building part of the game, or that StarCraft 2 is an MMORPG a la WoW.

    And why? Why do I think so? Because the switch between a top-down free-camera point-and-click strategy-style character RPG and a first/third-person chase-camera click-and-kill action-style character RPG is NOT, I repeat, it is NOT a technical transition: it is a GAMEPLAY transition. That is why I (and many others) ask that Fallout 3 is renamed into any other name.

    Now, I do understand your position, and I think I understand how graphics can really blind someone. All this fucking hype about graphic really pisses me off, though. You know what? GRAPHICS DON’T FREAKING MATTER IN A FALLOUT GAME. Graphics are ONLY ONE of the things you NEED to get the game content through and have it reach the player. GRAPHICS ARE NOT THE CONTENT THEMSELVES, or at least shouldn’t be. You know why? Because of Fallout’s CORE design: simulation of pen and paper RPG’s… That is why Fallout was such a praised name in the past, IS such a praised name NOW, and would hopefully be in the future (if Fallout 3 wasn’t going to screw everything up). In a Fallout game you HAVE to use your imagination, just like in a PNPRPG. I’m not asking that they make it 2D. It doesn’t matter for me. I’m not EVEN asking that they don’t make every dialog has voice overs (although I would certainly like that). What I’m asking is that they keep that specific part of fallout: player’s have to use their imagination.

    For instance, the indirectly related text-box in the left-bottom corner of the screen is GONE. Plain and simple. It is probably a reflex fact of the gameplay style (you don’t use the mouse anymore and all…), but it takes a big big chunk out of what fallout is… I mean, that is probably the BIGGEST issue about Fallout 3 not being a point and click game. Because we can have all the other things in a FPS, but not the descriptions for each and every single item and thing in the gameworld. Every rock, every weed, every window, every person, every item, every weapon, EVERYTHING (in Fallout 2, unfortunately, many things don’t have descriptions anymore, and that REALLY bothered me), everything has a description, you can look at it and YOUR CHARACTER (not you) sees it and describes it, and he will describe it differently according to his intelligence… Say what? IT’S AN RPG!!!

    OF COURSE, this doesn’t mean that the player shouldn’t be able to see things in detail, that’s not the point. In a case where player is able to see things in detail, the descriptions we would get should be logical enough and not redundant that we really see how our characters sees the world (a bit like Lara talking about the things in the world in the last Tomb Raider game). THAT is a very important part of fallout that will not see in this hell spawn (lol) Fallout 3 (which I sometimes call “FOE”, for FO3).

    Those small things, those little tidbits you find and like (or not) about a game, are what really makes a great game, and the lack of those things are what breaks it. And you should know that better than myself. The little things are the more important. Yes, how I like to be able to kick a slaver in the groins and send him flying for 10 meters, and then go there and smash his face with my sledge hammer while he was still K.O.. Guess what: no more groin shots. How I see the descriptions of items, for instance, of the “two-horned kangaroo skeleton” or of the “sleeping mattress where, even if you were to sleep by yourself, you would not sleep alone”. Guess what: no more descriptions (for those kind of objects at least). How I loved the little funny and individual descriptions for skills and stats and stuff. Guess what: Bethesda raped that. The old “Coordination and the ability to move well. A high Agility is important for any active character. Modifies: Action Points, Armor Class, Sequence, and many skills.” is not the simple and insipid “Agility affects your Small Guns and Sneak skills, and the number of Action Points available for V.A.T.S.”… How I loved to play while eating or drinking something (hot milk with chocolate in the late cold nights 😛 ). Guess what: twitch play! How I loved how there where no dungeon crawls in Fallout (Fallout 2 had them, much to my displeasure). Guess what: mutants everywhere, biggie baddie mutants to kill you with death! And who knows what more little things will be wiped out? Certainly (hopefully?) many will be there. but from the little things I’ve seen, it’s just stupid. Joke weapons? WTF?! Fallout had no joke weapons (well, actually it had one, but it was logical and retro-futurisctic). It didn’t have barbie-head-launcher-toaster style weapons, nor stupid mini nuclear explosions everywhere, nor PORTABLE PHONEBOTHS THA PROTECT YOU FROM RADIOACTIVITY AND NUCLEAR EXPLOSIONS!!! What the hell?!?! I mean, the little things I’ve seen in Fallout 3 are stupid, and not creatively neat as those in Fallout. Remember Rose’s brahmin fries? I do. Remember all the fuss about one headed brahmins? I do. Remember the rant about the description of Cat’s Paw not changing even after it was identified? I do. Remember the ingame rant about Fallout European version not having children? I do. Remember the conversation with the enclave guy? I do. Remember the BB gun in the shack? I do. Remember Tandy? Remember Tor? Remember Harold and Bod? I do, I do, I do. Remember the ingame thing about fallout 3 being 3D multiplayer? I do. Remember Vault 15 having a whole load of water chips? I do. Remember nuclear weapons, the things that destroyed the world, saving it (oh the irony)? I do. Twice? I do. Remember FEV, the thing that supposedly was going to save humanity, almost destroying it (oh, the irony again)? I do. Twice? I do. Remember Elvis painting? Remember the glasses? Remember the the radio? I do, do and do. Remember what Jet was made of? Remember *the* deathclaw? Remember that one mutant and his girlfriend? Again and again and again, I do. Hell! What do we have now? Cannon-raping vault-boy bobble heads? Nuclear grenade catapults that act like normal grenade launchers? Radiation pools that vanish after a little while? Mutants that look like uruk-hai, and not like mutants from 50’s comics anymore? What. The. Hell?!

    So, not only is fallout TONE and SETTING are being changed into something different, but it’s gameplay ALSO. No, they are not technical changes, and you certainly understand that?

    P.S.: This post was not revised and probably goes out of the way the discussion was taking. It probably focuses on a lot of different (eventually incoherent) thoughts and issues but I hope it’s a good read at least 🙂 Sorry about the occasional swearing (it’s hard seeing your car getting smashed by a truck and not to swear, and this is just the same thing).

  13. Maybe in a different format and with a revised text? 😀 It’s up to you now, brios 😉

    Also, now that I read it, 4too’s comment is very good 🙂 Don’t read mine, read his and you’ll do yourself a favor. 4too’s wittings is like poetry, no doubt about that.

  14. Nah I’m still around, just been busy with my day-job. 😛 I’ll get to it tonight hopefully Morbus, sorry! If you want to make sure you get everything you want answered make a more concise list of comments/questions and I’ll be sure I get to them, otherwise I’ll pick through the huge comment above and try to find the most important things this evening.

    I’ve mostly been trying to keep up with stuff on NMA and make sure I get all the questions there, so sorry I forgot this one. 🙂

  15. definitely understandable Bart, thanks for taking the time out to reply and share not just here but also at NMA.

    my questions again:

    did anyone get specifics on the conditions? (broken legs, dehydration, radiation) More specifically, how the nuke catapult/launcher will impact your rad count?

    can you give us an example of how that “interactive” character creation segment worked? What kind of questions did they ask you? IIRC, Republic/Revolution had a survey to start to determine your political alignment and Morrowind also asked you a series of questions to determine your class? Would you say it was similar to that or more freeform rather than trying to peg you into an RPG archetype?

    On the character sheets you saw did you notice any skills missing? Any new perks?

    On the item degradation. Is it possible to stem/slow this process beyond just stripping identical items for parts? Like some sort of “armorer” skill where you can clean/oil your gun regularly with some item kit (rather than a repair hammer) to slow this or keep your weapon functioning well even if it is beginning to degrade?

    did anyone ask if the crime and punishment system oblivion uses will reappear in a similar yet fractured way (given that different areas are controlled by different groups) ?

    and a new one since they’ve been talking about relieving the sheriff of his clothes and having NPCs defer to you as the new de facto sheriff– since the capacity is there for NPCs to recognize certain outfits/armors/items as belonging to certain roles is this going to play an additional role in stealth? (IE more Hitman style stealth based on deception rather than shadows) Fallout 1 and 2 both included this as well as deception in speech.

  16. Killzig: Most of these questions have full answers that go beyond what was shown at in the demo weeks ago, but I’ll provide what I know and keep speculation out of it.

    No idea about broken legs/limbs with regards to the player, as to the enemies when a successful or critical shot hit the mutant’s leg it looked like it was injured/blown off and the mutant fell to the ground. With Radiation and Dehydration it was stated that the player will need to find sources of water, but no idea of time intervals or what necessitates your need for water. It was shown that when drinking water on the open ground a small amount of Radiation was gained, and that when water in an underground Metro toilet was used it had less radiation because it’s further underground/safer (but it’s also gross and brown). The mini-nuke weapon’s rounds left a small amount of lingering radiation and if fired at a target too close (as Todd did) you would gain Rad immediately.

    Character Creation was not shown at all, but it was discussed. From what I remember no specifics with regards to your questions were mentioned yet.

    The skills and perks screens were shown very briefly, at a glance I didn’t notice anything out of place or any huge ommisions. I’m pretty sure they didn’t show any perks yet.

    Nothing specific was said about skills and their relation to item degredation, but I believe it was said that skills will effect how items degrade and how well you can repair them. I believe the use of other weapons just makes the process easier/better, but that’s speculation on my part.

    It wasn’t asked about Oblivion’s crime/punishment system, and damnit it really should have been. Hopefully we’ll get someone to posit this question to them sooner or later.

    Todd did mention that you can take out the sherrif and wear his clothing, and eventually become recognized as the new sheriff of the town. I really hope they utilize this towards the stealth system but nothing was said or shown about it yet.

    Sorry that most of these are pretty much null answers, hopefully it helped somewhat though.

    Morbus if you had some questions for me I’ll still get to them this evening.

  17. thanks Bart, that’s about what I expected since those are pretty specific questions. 🙂

    Did they say anything as far as WHY they were stressing the survival/horror angle so much? I really never got that vibe too strongly from Fallout.

  18. Morbus if you had some questions for me I’ll still get to them this evening.

    Ok, thanks for your time. However… erm… I wasn’t making any questions, I was saying why I didn’t agree with your statement. My comment is fairly big, but now that I’ve read it a few times, it’s actually quite easy to read (it’s very streamlined, and that’s good, I think). As for picking up the most important parts, as always in texts like these, start reading from the end to the beginning 😉

  19. Hmm… actually, start from the beginning, and stop where it says “That is why I (and many others) ask that Fallout 3 is renamed into any other name.” (about half-way thorugh). This way, you will avoid the big rant that is the second part of the comment 😛

  20. @Morbus; I think you make a few valid points in your piece about gameplay and themes. I do have a question for you though. Did you ever play a game called “Wasteland”? It was the real beginning of the Fallout series. It came out in 1987 for the Apple 2e and C64. It was created by the guys who started Interplay. For me this was the start of the whole idea. I loved this game and played it for hundreds of hours. The graphics were limited and dialogue used a book that came with the game, but the open endedness of the game was great!
    so when ten years later I first saw Fallout I was totally blown away. It was the same idea (really the same dev) and had real graphics and tons of new options. I was totally sold from the start, for me it was just like playing a version of ‘super’ Wasteland.
    I llok at the new FO3 the same way. The gameplay may have changed a little bit but at heart it’s still a CRPG. This is the key for me. I just look at the changes as was that the now 10-year-old Fallout is being made better.

  21. “Your (mis)use of the word “streamlined” pains me.”

    it’s so big that I’m turning it into an article for this blog, someone that spends one hour and a half writing in this place deserves it 🙂

    I’m going to quote you a lot too Bartoneus, on a collection of media tidbits about VATS I’m starting.

    And Critical-Hits is on the Bethsoft newsletter, now that’s free publicity for you

  22. Your (mis)use of the word “streamlined” pains me.

    Lol, it’s very possible xD

    that’s why I don’t read his posts.

    Because I misuse words or because they are “streamlined” ❓

    I do have a question for you though. Did you ever play a game called “Wasteland”?

    No. I can’t seem to find it anywhere, despite my efforts 😦

    I llok at the new FO3 the same way. The gameplay may have changed a little bit but at heart it’s still a CRPG. This is the key for me. I just look at the changes as was that the now 10-year-old Fallout is being made better.

    I do understand your point but look, Fallout is not Wasteland 2, no matter how it may feel. Fallout had very defined core design points, among which were simulation of PnP rules and feel and gameplay (to some extent, at least). All in all, I don’t give a damn about choices and consequences, becuase that’s something they should be doing in EVERY RPG out there, and not only in fallout. The way you talk, and many others, it looks like choices and consequences are something that defines fallout. It’s NOT. It’s something that defines RPG’s. So choices and consequences are a given already. Fallout is what is beyond that. Design, gameplay, setting, whatever. That is Fallout.

  23. @Morbus: I do have to say that Fallout was almost a “Wasteland 2”. Brian Fargo appears to think the same.
    –On June 21, 2007, Brian Fargo creator of Interplay said, “I am indeed looking into bringing back the game that spawned the Fallout series. Stay tuned….” in an interview with fan site DAC.–
    Both games were RPGs, both had the same theme, the same setting, the same dark humor and were based on PnP gameplay. I agree that Fallout is a better game, but that is because you could do more in 1997 then in 1986. I’m hoping that the same will be try for FO3.

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