|Release date:||31 October 2008|
Leave Vault 101 for the first time in your life and explore the post-apocalyptic wasteland that was once Washington DC.
Vault 101 is where you were born. For 200 years it has served the surviving residents of Washington DC after the global atomic war of 2077 left the US all but destroyed. Its residents enjoy sanctuary from the dangers of the outside world, now known as the Capital Wasteland. Yet one morning, you wake to find your father has defied the Overseer and left the vault for reasons unknown.
Barely 19 years old, you emerge from the vault into the harsh wasteland sun and begin searching for your father, and the truth.
Fallout 3 is the latest game from Bethesda Game Studios, creators of The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion. Set in Washington DC years after a nuclear explosion, it gives the player total freedom to explore the wasteland and make the choices that define not only their character, but the world around them.
The game also features an incredible arsenal of weapons, ranging from lead pipes to nuclear bomb catapults, which you'll need to take on giant insects, mutated zombies and super mutants. The V.A.T.S system allows you to stop time and target specific body parts to blind, cripple or disarm enemies.
- Revolutionary dialogue system - you decide how your player interacts with those around him and they react accordingly
- Create detailed characters using a flexible character creation tool and the S.P.E.C.I.A.L attribute system
- Beautifully detailed environments featuring real life monuments destroyed by nuclear war
An apocalyptic world filled with everyday folk and mutants. Welcome to Fallout 3
This third game in the Fallout series takes place in the year 2277, 36 years after the events of Fallout 2 and 200 years after the huge nuclear war that almost ended the world that the Fallout story takes place in.
Beginning with your birth into the hands of your father - voiced by Liam Neeson - Fallout 3's opening segment, which takes place deep underground in Vault 101, allows you to shape your character from childhood into the man or woman you intend to become once you venture outside into the perilous wastelands.
Aside from choosing your characters facial features, hair style and colour you are also handed a book called You're Special, which allows you to tweak your character's seven main areas of aptitude including health and agility. During these childhood years, each of the various milestones you reach as you develop your skills are marked by birthdays and tests you must complete.
On your tenth birthday, for example, you are awarded the PIP- Boy 3000, one of the most important tools in Fallout 3's gameplay. When you step outside the confines of Vault 101, it's the PIP-Boy that will save you in many a sticky situation by using the Vault-Tec Assisted System, or VATS.
The defensive system pauses combat temporarily as you select points on an enemy to hit. Each hit will cost you Action Points, so actions during a VATS assisted attack are limited to ensure you make those hits count. However, each hit's impact is determined by elements such as distance from a target and the angle at which you're shooting from. It will change each time so what may seem like a weak hit first time around, could vastly increase in power on a second attempt from a closer range and alternate angle.
Another interesting aspect that adds an additional level of challenge is that once you've picked up a weapon and begun using it in combat, it will eventually wear down over time. Aiming will become more difficult, rates of fire will lessen and you'll become much more exposed to attack, especially from enemies carrying more powerful weapons than yours. What you are then required to do is to combine these beaten firearms together to form much more reliable ones.
Brilliantly blending RPG gameplay with first and third person camera perspective, depending on what your particular preference is, Fallout 3 offers up huge number of intriguing ways to upgrade your character's abilities as you progress throughout the game.
You can also find weapons building plans littered throughout the world that will allow you to craft new and somewhat kooky weapons including the Rock-it Launcher, a device that shoots everything from teddy bears to lunchboxes at your enemies.
Be good be bad
Along the way you can also collect various different outfits such as a mechanics' overalls and chunky sets of armour that will improve character statistics such as the ability to repair items. However, you do have a locked weight limit which will stop you from loading up on too many items as you explore the wastelands so, like a lot of other things in Fallout 3, you will have to choose wisely.
One of the main aspects in Fallout is karma. Should you decide to spend your time committing acts of violence and crime towards the populace, your karma will be hugely affected; folk in certain towns you have been causing trouble in will recognise you as an immediate threat and attack you on sight.
Fallout 3 is such a huge game, you could spend hours upon hours exploring the various towns, nooks, crannies and countless side missions. Not only that, once you've ventured from the confines of the first town you end up in after leaving the vault, there lies a mammoth underground network of tunnels that span the whole wasteland.
An instant classic
Like many games in the RPG genre, you're awarded skill points that, while capping out at twenty, aid towards levelling up your character each time you kill an enemy or complete a mission successfully. Levelling up isn't just tagged to killing enemies and finishing missions, scavenging areas aids in upgrading too.
Missions themselves can be completed in a variety of ways making for excellent replay value. For example, you can either opt to take the aforermentioned dark path by killing everyone who stands in your way, which is likely to dent your karma levels, or you can try and bribe someone to succeed, the choice is yours. And choice is something Fallout has in abundance, offering up one of the richest gaming experiences on PlayStation 3 to date.