Video game Sunday

Brown on white

It's been a while since I posted a picture of moss texture, so today you get another one of those. I never get tired of it.

Today disappeared on me remarkably fast, mostly because I spent much of the day playing Fallout 3 (and the rest of it sorting through mail and straightening up the apartment). I still need to do shopping; tomorrow will have to be the day for that.

Fallout 3 is brilliant but also frustrating so far, mostly due to the first-person play controls. I found it obnoxiously difficult to get around Megaton to the point where it occasionally took me fifteen minutes to stumble on the right path to some destination, and one time thought I was going to have to reset the game because it managed to get me stuck behind some buildings. (Thankfully, resetting to third person temporarily got past the glitch and unstuck me.) This is, needless to say, not "fun." I really loathe first person perspective in video games. It feels claustrophobic and confusing to navigate. It's particularly bad in games, sadly like Fallout 3, where the in-game map both isn't available as an overlay and is almost completely worthless in some areas (like Megaton).

All that being said, the story and branching are spectacular, easily the most creative and open that I've ever seen on a console. I care about the story, I'm enjoying the possibilities, and I even rather like the combat (which I was expecting to hate). The combat is actually more fun than the general movement around the screen.

The graphics are... not as impressive as I was hoping for a current generation video game, honestly. They're great in places, but (again because of the damn first person perspective) they break down a lot. As with a lot of first-person games, you spend a lot of your time looking directly at walls, which are just as ugly and horribly pixellated as they were in Wolfenstein 3D. The few times there's a good vista, it's great, but the moment-to-moment graphics experience is only good.

The best part is the sense of humor and the little touches of sarcasm built into the world. This is the first RPG I've played in a long time that I can remember making me laugh out-loud. The whole post-apocalpytic setting isn't my cup of tea — I actually prefer the mystical SF of Japanese RPGs — but it's so well done that I'm loving it anyway.

I think once I get more used to the controls and more used to navigating around Megaton in particular (bad idea to make the first town built on multiple levels that aren't shown on the map and full of "you can't get there from here" catwalks), I'll be less frustrated and more engrossed. I'm trying to turn off my "I wonder if I'm doing it right" sensors and just play without looking at a walkthrough, although I did skim a few just in case there was anything that I would have been spectacularly annoyed to miss. I think I'm satisfied now that there isn't and I'm trying to just do whatever occurs to me and not worry too much about it. The goal is to enjoy a free-form first playthrough and then go back a second time armed with a walkthrough and see more of the neat stuff that I missed the first time because I didn't minimax my skills or know exactly the right dialogue branches to take.

Posted: 2009-02-15 23:05 — Why no comments?

Last spun 2013-07-01 from thread modified 2013-01-04