It's still, I should note, not a first-person shooter though. I was a lot happier once I started responding to a lack of action points with hiding instead of trying to target manually. Don't play it like Call of Duty and you'll be much happier.
"You could be anything from an evil medical genius who's got a way with rocket launchers to an angelic scientist that can decapitate a mutant with a single hammer swing."
Considering my satisfaction with the new combat and beautifully detailed wasteland, imagine my surprise to find that (despite a completely ingenious opening half-hour) the first few hours of the post-apocalyptic adventure left me just the slightest bit cold.
It's not a result, as you may suspect, of trying to stretch the Fallout
skin over the Oblivion
skeleton. By lifting some of Fallout
's core systems and aesthetic cues, this current-gen entry does an admirable job of capturing the spirit of the series. Honestly, if you're still wishing for an isometric, third-person view by the end, you're just being contrary.
No, the problems didn't come in the merging of setting and engine, they're the problems that Oblivion
already had and the baggage that Fallout 3
is still saddled with.
Physics glitches are still there, with plates and the like occasionally catapulting across rooms with the slightest provocation. There's also some of Oblivion's trademark AI weirdness, with characters able to act somewhat human within only narrowly defined parameters. Try to get clever at all and they almost certainly won't know how to react. They're not huge game breakers, but they were often enough to take me out of the experience.
I think hoping that issues like this would be non-existent was my problem with the early hours of Fallout 3,
and I didn't have much trouble getting past them. I mention them because if problems like that put you off of Oblivion
, they're still present, though reduced.
But that's the trade-off you're going to make here. Once I realized that, like in Oblivion
, I needed to bring a little something to the table, a little imagination, a little forgiveness, I was able to enjoy Fallout 3
for what it is: A gorgeous, terrifying, utterly engrossing world to explore. I really hope that you can do the same.Second Opinion
Two characters and 20 hours in, I feel that the game is not "Oblivion
with guns" so much as it is Fallout
with Bethesda's game creation blueprint. The game is expansive, and certainly more colorful and vibrant than previous Elder Scrolls
titles, but there's a feeling of soullessness. Environments are aesthetically pleasing, but not what I'd call interactive. The character's voices are much better and more varied, but in a post-apocalyptic world everyone's faces have been injected with an overdose of Botox. It's a little unfair to the title at hand, but after seeing Fable 2's
brilliant use of a canine companion, I'm hoping a stronger relation with Dogmeat is explored in future DLC or a sequel. But despite those flaws, it's everything I wanted: Another Fallout
game that stays very true to the series.