Frag Doll Friday On a Monday

Newly posted old interview to be found over here.  Some nifty footage of the PAX trailer and of course, Fallout 3 being played in or around said trailer.

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Win A Puppet at Joystiq

Photo Joystiq

Photo Joystiq

Want to win Vault Boy puppets or Survival Guides? Joystiq has a giveaway contest just for you:

All we want to know is what perk you would want in real life, whether it’s an actual Fallout perk or something you just made up.[…]

  • Leave a comment telling us what perk you would want to have in real life. Be creative and descriptive!
  • You must be 18 years or older and a (non-zombie) resident of the US or Canada (excluding Quebec and Megaton).
  • Limit 1 entry per person per calendar day (comment more than once and the Brotherhood will pay you a visit).
  • This entry period ends at 10:00pm ET on Friday, September 26th. We’ll randomly select three winners at that time to each receive a Vault Boy puppet (valued at approximately $15); two of those will also receive the Vault Dweller’s Survival Guide (approx. $0.15). Please check your e-mail!

For a list of complete rules click here.

Joystiq Fallout 3 Special

Fallout 3 booth at PAX/Picture Joystiq

Fallout 3 booth at PAX/Picture Joystiq

Joystiq also played Fallout 3 at PAX, and has an interesting piece to prove it. Here’s a snippet from some quick notes at the end:

  • On the topic of sex. “We haven’t pushed the limits with sex,” said Pagliarulo. “We found that the whole adult content thing, we knew we’d have crazy over-the-top violence and have kids in the game, and dealing with attacking them.” Pagliarulo cited Mass Effect as a game where it was important to the story. In Fallout 3, he said, he didn’t want to make sex “a joke and cheesy,” much like excessive profanity (a lot was cut out, apparently). “The closest you come to any of that is renting a room and [a woman] sleeps next to you. It’s implication.” That happens for either gender.
  • There are characters you can infer are gay. “We don’t make a big deal out of it,” he said. “To us, they’re people.”
  • Here’s an SAT analogy. Computers : Fallout 3 :: Books : Oblivion.
  • For more, check out our interview with Executive Producer Todd Howard.

Again thanks to Incognito.

That Videogame Hands On Fallout 3

Bye bye Megaton

Bye bye Megaton

That Videogame Blog also went to PAX and played Fallout 3:

I ran down to the bomb, planted the charge, and turned around to see the town sheriff, Lucas Simms, asking me what I was doing. At first I was afraid that I had been caught red-handed, but surprisingly I was easily able to convince him that I was just wandering around and was just about to leave. I left the settlement, and started hoofing it towards the meeting place, a tower out in the distance. It took a while to make it out there, but looking around and seeing the post-apocalyptic ruins around me was enough to stay occupied. When I finally reached the tower, I met Mr. Burke at the top on a balcony, where I was then instructed to throw a switch to detonate the nuke, and along with it the town of Megaton. I did, and the explosion was like nothing I have ever seen in-game before. After watching the innocents die, and being told my demo was over, I decided to end it in style. I pulled out a bat I had in my inventory and beat Burke to death, then jumped off the balcony with a good five seconds of free fall ending with an instant death, which was no surprise after such a high fall.

After my time with Fallout 3, I can safely say that I am excited to see what Bethesda will deliver this Fall. The open-ended nature of the quests, the post-apocalyptic setting, and the well-implemented battle system all blend well to me, and I hope that will carry on to the retail version. Fallout 3 will be released on October 28 in North America, October 31 in Europe, and December 4 in Japan.

Fallout 3: The Whole Package

From the PAX booth - Picture GayGamer

From the PAX booth - Picture GayGamer

GayGamer takes a second look at Fallout 3 at PAX:

Entering the expo floor, it wasn’t hard to find the Fallout 3 booth with its neon sign and arrow pointing the way. Once I arrived I was thrilled to see that the Bethesda folks went all out in decorating their booth. A giant 50’s Airstream camper on a lawn of Astro-turf surrounded by a picket fence. One side was clean and shiny, featuring a nuclear family of 50’s mannequins sporting nifty vault suits while the other side had nuclear blasted mannequins covered with dirt and ash. It was quite effective and upon further inquiry, I discovered that the booth was put together by the special effects team that worked on The Hills Have Eyes remake. In my personal opinion, Bethesda won the prize for the best decorated both in all of PAX. Accompanying the booth were also some extremely well crafted promotional materials. Fallout 3, as they say, has the whole package.[…]

My second look at Fallout 3 was invigorating and definitely strengthened my resolve to clear out my gaming calendar before the game comes out. Much like my experience with Oblivion, I can tell I will be completely sucked into the world of Fallout 3 and hopefully you will too.

RP Gamer At PAX

Impressions from the game by RP Gamer:

Lastly, I set out to explore the region but ended up getting stuck on a wall. The helpful staff came over and suggested I recall away (the player can recall to any point of interest they’ve discovered), so I zipped back to the vault and then teleported to the nearby school, which hung the game. Guess I really am good at breaking things…but it is still in development after all, and just think: I found two bugs for them to fix for the final product!

Once the game was loaded again, I handed over controls to Mikel, who ran into some friendly bandits who were kind enough to give him some armour and weapons, including a flamethrower. This is where the macabre chuckling began, as Mikel quickly figured out the aiming system built into the game, and all three bandits went down one way while their seperated heads rolled another. Funny, but utterly disgusting. His crowning achievement came when a dog mole rat leaped towards him, he aimed with his flamethrower, and the dog was fried mid-air — flying over Mikel’s head and rolling down the hill behind him for several seconds. A pause as all three of us dropped our jaws, then insane giggling began.

Fallout 3 is a gritty, dark game with a cheeky sense of humour. Those that enjoyed the previous games will undoubtedly enjoy this one, and new fans can flock to the resurrected series.

Spotted at NMA.

Fallout Three in a Row

Image Kotaku

Image Kotaku

Let’s start with Gamersglobal interviewing Pete Hines:

GamersGlobal: Pete, at E3, Fallout 3 seemed to be rather easy to play by due to the V.A.T.S. mode. By queuing up all those headshots or shots into the legs, I could win nearly all fights very easily. I was playing in normal difficulty, by the way. Is this something you’re going to tweak? Or do you want to have it so easy in the beginning?

Pete Hines: For the most part the stuff that you find in the beginning should be fairly easy for you to deal with. We certainly don’t want it to be like you come out of the vault and start fighting and keep dying. So the enemies you face in that part of the world, will not be that difficult to deal with for someone who just turned level 2. As you go out in the world, you definitely find tougher enemies, folks that are bigger and a tougher challenge.

GamersGlobal: Was the E3 version “simplified”, e.g. by making the hero’s character more powerful than he would be in the finished game at that early stage? Or was every V.A.T.S. hit in the E3 version a critical hit?

Pete Hines: It was simplified in terms of giving you the highest stats for the weapons you start off with. Every V.A.T.S. hit in the E3 version was not a critical hit. Far from it. It’s random, so some folks may see more or less of it when they play for any period of time.

GamersGlobal: Will V.A.T.S. head shots be always fatal, if they hit?

Pete Hines: No. There is an amount of damage it will do to the limb, and an amount it does to the enemy’s overall health. In the easier creatures you would have faced early on, they don’t have much health so they die easier. As you explore out and fight tougher creatures, you find that you can cripple one or more body parts before you can kill the enemy.

Now for the IGN impressions:

The raider encounter was interesting because it showed how it’s possible to stumble into an area of the game that you are simply not quite ready to tackle yet. That’s a departure from Bethesda’s fantasy RPGs; those games scaled the difficulty to your experience level, so the game always feels “just right” and you can never get into too much trouble. These raiders were armed with sniper rifles and worse, and while I managed to kill three or four, they still managed to cut me down.

This is my second or third time to play around with the turn-based VATS combat system, and I’m now really feeling comfortable with it. It also helps that they’ve done a lot to polish the system. You have an action point meter that’s usually full when you enter combat; hitting the right bumper pauses the game and kicks you into the turn-based targeting system. Since this was a demo and I was never going to see this character ever again, I dumped all my points into small guns skills, which made me especially lethal with pistols, hunting rifles, and assault rifles. This let me target the heads of my opponents with a decent chance of hitting. If you have a full meter, you can queue about four pistol shots or three rifle shots up. Then hit the execute button and watch how the combat unfolds.

I’m an old school fan of the Fallout series, and the one thing I will always remember is the over-the-top level of violence in those games. I’m glad to say that Fallout 3 made me chortle and laugh and gasp as I saw gunfire blow heads apart or even saw heads off of bodies. Blood doesn’t just squirt; it fountains out of severed arteries. It’s graphic, and gratuitous, and thoroughly awesome.

This one I saw at Kotaku, Bethesda is donating the Fallout 3 Airstream to Child’s Play:

Now you should be getting enthused about the Nuclear Airstream too. Turns out that Bethesda plans to donate the amazing piece of schwag to Child’s Play following the launch of the game. Can you imagine winning this bad boy and parking it in your front yard for late night gaming sessions. The whole thing, I’m told, even runs on electricity.

Spotted the rest at the excelent NMA PAX coverage.

The Fallout 3 Shack

Megaton

Megaton

Shacknews dwells into Fallout 3 at PAX:

The thing about the VATS system–the slow motion approximation of Fallout’s tactical limb targeting system–is that, while it at first seems to function more like a bullet time system, it fundamentally works on the same level of Fallout’s original system. There’s that same decision between a sure shot or a low-percentage attempt, and that same glorious anticipation before a 99%, skull-exploding, point-blank blast to the eye.

Case in point, the minigun-wielding giant I faced. With only a handgun to take him down, I switched over to grenades for saving throw. Using the VATS, I targeted him with three throws and let them go. I watched the lifespan of each grenade, heard the pin pop and saw the pineapple land right at the feet of the giant mutant, resting there for a moment before dutifully shredding the monster’s legs.

After dispatching the mutants, I noticed a tied-up human in the church they were guarding. I wasn’t given this quest–this was simply a building I found out in the middle of nowhere. After choosing to untie the poor sap, he thanked me, then offered me his supplies. I had the choice of taking them, or acknowledging that he needed them more. I took them. Screw being nice.

They also feature an interview with Pete Hines and Istvan Pely:

Shack: Sometimes it takes a long time before you find any enemies. I assume you guys have carefully balanced their placement so that it feels just right?

Istvan Pely: Yeah, and we try to find the right balance, so that it feels like I’m not running into something every minute, but it doesn’t take long before I come across something.

And our encounters, there are some very creative encounters. You may come across a hit squad going after some guy, or a melee fight going on that has nothing to do with you–you can just watch them, let them kill eachother, help one side or the other. There’s a lot of neat little things to discover there that are unpredictable. It’s not always going to be, “Oh, Radscorpion coming at me.” There’s some of that, but there’s a lot more to it.

Pete Hines: I think the Super-Duper Mart is probably one of the best examples of that. In front of the Super-Duper Mart is just this complete, every time you come around the corner you have no idea what’s gonna be going on. Sometimes there’s a robot fighting some stuff, or a Radscorpion attacking some guy. It’s so great every time you go see it–it’s one of those watercooler things.

Istvan Pely: Sometimes you get there and everybody’s dead. [laughs]

Shack: Are you guys getting sick of the comparisons to Oblivion? Like, “It’s Oblivion, but with guns”?

Istvan Pely: It’s two-sided, you know. It’s a compliment, and at the same time we set out to make a very different game. We did not start with the design of Oblivion and decide how we were going to change it to make Fallout. We started with, “How is this going to be Fallout?” But we built on experiences we learned with Oblivion. So obviously it’s a similar kind of open world–there’s experiences with how to make that work, how to keep it exciting, so we applied our lessons learned. It works both ways for us.

Pete Hines: I think the thing that makes it most annoying is that it’s said in a tone that’s sort of like, that’s the best that we could do. For guys like Istvan who have spent literally four years making this game, it really sells short how much time and effort they’ve put into making this a Fallout game that is true to Fallout. As opposed to just the bare minimum we could do, let’s just re-skin all of our creatures to look sort of post-nuclear and just be done with it.

So much more time and effort went into it by the designers and the artists. That’s really the only thing that gets me. We love Oblivion, we made it, of course we’re proud of it. But just to say that that’s all we did, the least amount of effort, really sells short the four years we’ve put into making this game.

Spotted at NMA and various other places.

Howard in PAX MP3

Picture Joystiq

Picture Joystiq

Joystiq has an audio interview with Todd Howard:

In an interview with Bethesda executive producer Todd Howard we discussed Fallout 3’s lack of a MOD support and this generation of consoles. While Howard admits the team wants to add support for user generated content he confesses adding the feature — which was included in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion — is a daunting task for a team eager to complete the epic adventure.

Also check their puppet gallery.

Kotaku Talks Fallout 3 at PAX

Picture Kotaku at PAX

Picture Kotaku at PAX

The good and the bad from the impressing Fallout 3 display at Penny Arcade Expo for Kotaku:

Hands-down the best booth on the Penny Arcade Expo show floor is Bethesda’s Fallout 3 homage.

The central booth features kiosks of playable Fallout 3, singed mannequins, and an honest to god Airstream motor home on a patch of faux grass surrounded by white picket fences.

The Bethesda folks tell me that the Airstream is an authentic, not a replica, that the company purchased and then paid someone to clean-up and retro fit. Inside the refrigerated air of the mobile home is a wealth of retro goodies touched-up with a Fallout ambiance.

There are, for instance, old Life magazines, a refrigerator packed with ice cold Nuka Colas, a wood panel framed flat screen television and a waffle iron of the future. You can tell it’s from the future by the mini radar dish protruding from the top griddle.

But there were a few problems too:

The Fallout demo was schedule to run in the Main Theater at 2:30 –the exact same time as the Harmonix: The Rockening panel ended. The demo would also run over the Warhammer Online demo by a good half hour, ending at 3:30.

I ducked out of Hamronix 45 minutes early mostly due to technical issues, but also because I wanted to head off a huge line for Fallout. My plan failed as I encountered well over 200 hundred people ahead of me. Dutifully, I waited in line, suffering through all the misery of yesterday all over again.

But 2:30 came and went and still the line didn’t move. It was nearly 2:50 by the time the big partition blocking off the Main Theater from the line-waiting room was parted, admitting the first of well over 1000 people that wanted to see this game. I was fairly hopeful because I was in the first third of the line – but when I was within 10 people of the opening, the line stopped.

After some muddled arguments and confused muttering, a meek marketing chick was sent out with little cardboard consolation prize. We were subsequently turned away. Or not even turned away since no one said “go away.” They just stood there, staring at us as we stared at them, not letting us into the demo. The passive-aggressive shun, if you will.

That’s the trouble with mega-huge game expos – there just isn’t enough room for everybody. Looks like PAX has succumbed to E3 syndrome.

You can see a small gallery of the retro and falloutish stuff in there here.