Massive Fallout 3 interview at SPOnG


Pete Hines answered a great number of questions for SPOnG, let’s see the result:

SPOnG: For those that don’t really know about the history of Fallout – can you give us a quick potted history?

Pete Hines: The original Fallout was released in 1997, developed by Black Isle Studios for Interplay. The team changed a little, some of the principals from that team left, and Fallout 2 was made by a slightly different team. F2 was put out in 1998 and then, after that, there were a couple of what you might call ‘derivative’ games: there was a Brotherhood of Steel game that was kind of like a hack‘n’slash – it was supposed to be kind of like Baldur’s Gate: Dark Alliance but in the Fallout universe. There was a Fallout Tactics game, which captured the turn-based strategy part – but there’s been no true Fallout game, no true role-playing game in the Fallout series since 1998. So, it’s been sitting around for a long time with nothing happening.

A lot of us here were – are – big fans of Fallout, and we finally said, “Well if nobody else is going to do another one, why don’t we do it?”. So, we went out and acquired the rights to do it and we’ve been working on it since 2004, in some way, shape or form – and now we’re finally at a point where we can start showing you guys where we’re up to.

SPOnG: Do you have any of the guys from the original Fallout or Fallout 2 teams involved?

Pete Hines: No, it’s our team. Mainly the Oblivion team.

SPOnG: What’s the whole deal with rabid Fallout fanboys desperately worried that Fallout 3 is not going to be a proper RPG?

Pete Hines: Well, at its core Fallout 3 is definitely a role-playing game. If you are of the opinion that any Fallout RPG has to be exactly like the games that came out in 1997 and 1998 down to every feature and detail, that’s definitely not the game we are making. We are trying to make a true successor in the Fallout franchise, something that is a true role-playing game that immerses you in this world, and hopefully brings out the best of what that series is about – which is great tone and setting and themes and characters and player choice… You know, it’s a really interesting, special role-playing system.

If folks are interested in a new Fallout game (as opposed to being slavishly interested in a specific list of demands relating to Fallout or Fallout2); or [they] are just interested in role-playing in general but may not have played the original games; or they are just looking for the next big RPG or the next big RPG coming from Bethesda… we certainly hope all of those folks are interested in what we are up to with Fallout 3.

Actually there was no BIS division at Interplay when the first Fallout was made. But the idea that the game is directed more to people that never played the previous games, Bethesda RPGs fans and people that don’t care about anything but the name in the box makes sense, I think.

SPOnG: Have you considered bundling versions of those earlier Fallout games with Fallout 3?

Pete Hines: No. They are still out there. Interplay still has the ability to sell and distribute those. They are also based on a completely different generation of hardware and operating systems. It can be difficult to get that stuff to run. We’re basically moving forward with where we want to take it and not re-treading stuff that came out nearly ten years ago.

Actually Fallout 2 works fine in both my Vista computers.

SPOnG: One of the features in Fallout 3 that really stands out is V.A.T.S. (Vault-tec Assisted Targeting System) – can you explain how this works?

Pete Hines: V.A.T.S. was really born out of a desire to make the game work best as a first-person game – remember that the original games were third-person with turn-based combat. We feel that first-person is the most immersive way to put a player in a world. However, at the same time we wanted something that stayed as true as possible to role-playing. We don’t want something that rewards the ‘quick-twitch’ FPS player. We’re not trying to reward players who are good at Call of Duty or Halo or whatever.

We want the skills and abilities of your character to determine success or failure. So, one of the things we’ve included is this V.A.T.S. mode allows you to stop time and queue up moves for your character to implement, in almost a compressed time mode. And then we play it out in a cinematic fashion.

We already saw that Emil Pagliarulo and Todd Howard went to Halo and CoD for inspiration regarding the combat, so this statement was odd.

SPOnG: There has been a lot of speculation about this ‘Corpses Eaten’ statistic that we can see in the game from the current demo you are showing – does this mean that you can play as a zombie in the game?

Pete Hines: We’re not talking about ‘Corpses Eaten’ right now [smiles]. There is an awful lot of stuff that we still have to tell folks about Fallout 3. Don’t forget that we are not coming out till Fall 2008 – we have a long way to go still!

SPOnG: Great stuff. Thanks for your time Pete!

Pete Hines: No worries. Now let me show you this new demo. You’ll like this.

I would probably enjoy watching it too 🙂

There’s much more in there, go and read the entire piece, it’s worth it.


26 thoughts on “Massive Fallout 3 interview at SPOnG

  1. We’re basically moving forward with where we want to take it and not re-treading stuff that came out nearly ten years ago.

    like the
    super mutants

    lulz. why don’t they just come out and say fuck the fans at DAC and NMA? HEY PETE, FUCK YOU.

  2. Good lord you’re starting to sound like Morbus on a really bad day 🙂

    You are right, of course, but I wouldn’t shout at him for that, he’s being honest, and that’s rare in PR work, good for him.

  3. Isn’t the part about them going out an acquiring the license a crock as well? As I remember it: Interplay was ready to sell it, and those in the industry knew it. There were certainly other interested companies, Bethesda was simply the first to meet the asking price. It was more along the lines of picking up something in an auction than strong action on their part.

    I dislike the assertion that they ‘saved’ Fallout.

  4. If I had feelings, the constant barrage of calling me a maniac might get to me. Loved, absolutely loved, Pete Hines underhanded “spend every day of their lives” stab at us. Good demonizing, Pete.

  5. Well, look at all the media sources that refer to us as “rabid.” Far too much use of a single word for it to be natural, I’m pretty sure that this is the term Bethesda has been using to describe us.

  6. I love watching Bethesda and Fallout fans react to each other — its like watching a car accident; You can’t help but watch, you wince as the two things collide, you hope nobody gets hurt, you’re glad it wasn’t you and you continue on about your day.

    I know, I know, Bethesda is the big bad corporate machine ass raping your memories of an all time great game, and though plenty of stones are cast from the Fallout fans, they’ll gleefully cry Martyr every time they think Bethesda is taking a personal snipe at them. I think you guys read to much into things and take things too personally.

    By the way, did anyone listen to this weeks 1up games for windows podcast? High-larity ensues 🙂

    I don’t want Fallout fans to think I’m only making fun of them though, so from now on I’m poking fun at anything and anyone– I want IN on this mutually inclusive demonizing, dammit!

  7. Mutants are the biggest threat again?It’s quite boring the same plot was in first game and something similar was in that horrible FOBOS.So they can’t come up with something new?!?Is it so hard?!?

  8. So, we walked around. For the demo, we tried to lie to our father, but with only a 29 percent chance of succeeding, it was a failure, and he ordered us to go take the G.O.A.T..

    Does anyone honestly believe that the only reason you couldn’t lie to your dad here was that the speech skill was too underdeveloped? You have no choice but to take the GOAT it seems like. God forbid your character act the out o step fool and go do his own monkeying about in the Vault. Rebelliousness in teenagers? NEVAR.

  9. Fallout fan A: They’re adding *what* into the game? Those didn’t exist before! They’re totally ignoring canon, those assholes!

    Fallout fan B: Wait…What? You mean they’ve got most every creature, weapon and item from the first 2 Fallouts in this game too? They are so unoriginal, those assholes!

    Fallout fan C: They’re just assholes!

    Fallout fan D: Anyone who has ever played the originals would know the BoS would never be on the east coast, and we all know that the model t-51 b suit of armor would never have pauldrons that large from time period, as you can clearly see from the carbon dating of that tree bark in this screenshot. Furthermore, the chronology of the Supermutants clearly crested with the FEV of the Vault 13, so thje lineage of Supermutants would have died about 5 years after the events of Fallout 2, so obviously there’s no way that vault 101 could exist, but if it did (and that a big IF), they clearly would have been using the luxomatic 3000 garment creator to make the form fitting nut hugging vault suit of the previous games, and not this baggy jump suit looking thing they wear now. And to add insult to injury, they are using the wrong color blue, which should have a Pantone color swatch of 10A056D. Can’t those guys get anything right?

  10. Oh C’mon, you can’t take a little good natured ribbing even though it wasn’t directed directly at you? You aren’t seriously going to start crying troll are you? Did I get the Pantone color swatch wrong?

  11. Good lord you’re starting to sound like Morbus on a really bad day 🙂

    Tell me about it. I’m refraining from commenting this shit. You can probably imagine the fury and anger and all those things… -_-

  12. Fallout fans gotta stick together if we wanna survive the blast… Anyway, seems as though this thing here didn’t mean shit for bethesda. Together? Pff… Maybe if the green gloved and the blue wearing hands were replaced by the hands of mainstream gaming sites…

  13. Why don’t you send that picture to gstaff, Morbus? Isn’t he supposed to be the community manager? But that wouldn’t be complaining, would it, and where’s the fun in that!

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