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Default Fallout 3 - Preview & Interview @ NMA

August 29th, 2007, 02:47
What happens when you let NMA go to GC and view Bethsoft's Fallout 3 demo? Well, you get a good walkthrough of the demonstration, some "conclusions" at the end and an interview. Here's an early snip:
Outside, the PC turns on his PipBoy flashlight, which has a kind of greenish light. Near the vault door are a few skeletal remains holding up signs saying "Let us in motherfuckers!" and the like, Hines joking that these are people they wouldn't let in. The vault door can be seen closing as Hines turns around near the end of the tunnel, before opening the shed door which closes the tunnel off from the outside world.

Initially the light "blinds" the PC, making the entire world look blurry until your eyes adjust in about 5-10 seconds. The PC walks unto a ridge marked "scenic overlook" by a sign (perhaps for the demo), where he stands to look at the desolate, rocky, desert surroundings, with some ruins of buildings and of a bridge. Hines notes this is the wasteland surrounding DC, and that you can walk to whatever you see. The wasteland itself looks fairly empty, but ruined remains form clear landmarks in the distance. The sky was grey and dreary, which is how it remained all throughout the demo.
…and a clip from the interview:
NMA: How do you explain the omnipresence of nuclear explosions -both from nuclear powered cars, from the Fatman and from Megaton- in the game, while in the original games nuclear power (especially explosions) was treated with much consideration and respect, thereby making it a rare occurrence whenever it was used. The same goes for radiation itself. In the originals, it was extremely lethal if you didn't take the right precautions, but in the demonstration we see plenty of times where radiation is more seen like a trivial matter. Standing next to an exploded nuclear car barely gives off any radiation.
Pete Hines: In the demonstration there are a lot of nuclear explosions, like the Fatman, that seem very present, but this won't be so in the actual game. I can assure you that ammunition for the Fatman will be very scarce indeed and that it won't be treated lightly. As for the strength of radiation, much of it is simply game balance. While we want the game to be raw and cold, we also want the game to be fun. We're, of course, still balancing the radiation strength and impact.
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August 29th, 2007, 02:47
What do you get? The apocalypse is what!

Your opinion, Dhruin?

I'm curious to hear everyone's opinion, since there're a lot of posters with good heads on their shoulders here. One thing I'll pre-emptively state: yes, there is some bias and yes, there's quite a bit of bias in the third page, though a lot of that is more a matter of NMA's perspective being different than that of reporters*. I wouldn't write it off whole as just a biased piece, tho'. At least I hope not

* As Desslock once discussed it with me:
As you mentioned, a lot of gaming press probably doesn't have that perspective - in fact, many of the people writing for gaming publications today probably weren't writing when those games initially came out, and a lot of them have never played them, at least to any significant degree. So they just see a "new" game, and evaluate it with a clean slate, and could care less how faithful an experience it offers to the franchise.
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August 29th, 2007, 08:12
I say that if it ends up like the demo then it won't be as good as I hoped but like I have said before and was patially confirmed here the demo isn't relevant to what the game is going to be like. They probably just threw this together so they would have something to show the press.
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August 29th, 2007, 08:42
The undercover dark ops slant is somewhat amusing. I am happy that the article rightfully rejects the "Oblivion with guns" simplification which I always found a bit off the mark.
It is clear that this is observed from a certain critical perspective, and that you were out to substantiate that perspective. Since we all know where you are coming from, there is nothing wrong with that. In fact it seems you tried hard to be as objective as you could. In addition this is of course the most detailed account of the demo we have had. So I say good work.
The question to me is really about what you discuss in the conclusions: is there a real design vision here, or is it the mere hotchpotch of ideas and styles, all simmered down to a casual gamer digestible broth, as you suspect? I am sceptical too, because Todd does not seem to have the kind of vision that lead to great games in that sense (though admittedly highly amusing and successful ones as Oblivion) and it is completely open how Emil performs as a lead designer. He has certainly shown a talent for smart and involved level and quest design in the past, but can he craft a story and a coherent world too, especially when limited by the canon of the Fallout universe?
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August 29th, 2007, 10:36
Good article. Very refreshing to read a write-up of the demo that's beyond the "ZOMG that's awsum!" level we've been seeing. As I've said before, I don't know whether Bethsoft has the talent and passion to pull it off; your write-up certainly hasn't done anything to reassure me on the point.

Interesting point about the name of the game. I can't say I fully understand what difference it would make if the game was called Fallout: Capital Wasteland rather than Fallout 3 (and frankly, I don't think many people other than our friendly glittering gems of hatred do either).
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August 29th, 2007, 11:08
NMA infiltrates Bethesda press presentation as undercover journalists and asks the pr head man himself some serious questions? Hah hah, good show fellas!

The three page preview like itself says shows the same demo of Fallout3 that has been shown already in E3 and maybe somewhere else. So it was pretty (indepth story) much of what was already known of the title, Oblivion with guns. But the picture of B.None staring face down right next to the paragraph with the future prospects of FO3 is hilarious.

As for the Q&A part it was pretty nice job asking questions other "journalists" haven't asked before. For Pete Hines' sake I have to say that he gave pretty detailed answers considering that was just a demo of the full game that is still far ahead from being completed.

NMA: Apparently not everyone is pleased with Bethesda's interpretation of Fallout. NMA, RPGcodex and DaC are a few of the oldest Fallout communities around and none of them seem to accept Bethesda's view on things, or are at least very skeptical about the game. Why is it that the communication with those communities is difficult at best?

Pete Hines: We are in contact with those communities and they receive the same treatment as all the other communities. We frequently read them and we understand exactly what it is they want. The problem is however that they've had years to think about what they wanted and create a view of what Fallout 3 should be that could never be possible today. They're still stuck 8 years back in their views of Fallout 3. It simply wouldn't work.
Lol the irony of this question. That's some solid comedy gold. Did Hines have a clue at that point?
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August 29th, 2007, 12:39
is there a real design vision here, or is it the mere hotchpotch of ideas and styles, all simmered down to a casual gamer digestible broth, as you suspect?
That's the million dollar question right there. A few criticisms so far seem to come from not very well thought previews and misunderstandings, although Beth has it share of blame by only now starting to get things straight, as Emil did recently.

And other specific problems that are still in the air might be resolved, there is still time for that.

But what it isn't clear by now, even with this very detailed account of the demo and good questions is if there is a coherent vision across the project. That's what keeps me in the fence, although the game overall seems to be a step forward regarding Oblivion (it will never be my desired Fallout 3, but one has to move on).

A former BIS dev complained at NMA a few days ago about that, the lack of a consistent and coherent vision on Beth's discourse about the game. Maybe they do have that consistent vision, we'll have to wait on that and keep pushing for more info in order to finally answer your million dollar question, GhanBuriGhan.
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August 29th, 2007, 13:53
Very nice work - it was really nice walking through the demo and then getting some (admittedly biased) perspective.

One thing that stuck with me was the bit near the end of the demo about the group of reporters who all clapped and laughed at all the right moments. You know most of them have seen this demo more than once before, and are engaging in a ritualistic dance with Bethesda … who knows how *that* will end …

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August 29th, 2007, 16:35
Originally Posted by Surlent View Post
The problem is however that they've had years to think about what they wanted and create a view of what Fallout 3 should be that could never be possible today. They're still stuck 8 years back in their views of Fallout 3. It simply wouldn't work.
Did Hines have a clue at that point?
I think Hines is dead-on right.
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August 29th, 2007, 18:52
You wanted to be disappointed and you were. Shocking how that turned out.
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August 29th, 2007, 18:59
Nice work. Will never stop to amaze me how retarded Hines is.
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August 29th, 2007, 19:23
Originally Posted by BillSeurer View Post
I think Hines is dead-on right.
Really?

The problem is however that they've had years to think about what they wanted and create a view of what Fallout 3 should be that could never be possible today. They're still stuck 8 years back in their views of Fallout 3. It simply wouldn't work.
Someone tell VD that Dragon Age is not possible today. Oh, and ignore Van Buren which was being worked on four years ago.

I wonder when the Modern Age started.
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August 29th, 2007, 19:49
Originally Posted by mactbone View Post
Really?
Yes, really.

Someone tell VD that Dragon Age is not possible today. Oh, and ignore Van Buren which was being worked on four years ago.
Dragon Age is a commercially successful follow-on to Fallout 2? Then why is NMA complaining? Oh, wait, it's a fantasy RPG that hasn't been released yet despite them demoing it in 2004 already. Bioware's claiming it is a "blockbuster" before it is released is like Disney declaring every one of their movies is a "classic".

When was Van Buren released as a successful commercial game? Oh, wait, it was abandoned.
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August 29th, 2007, 19:58
Since Arena and Dagerfall predate Fallout we also can say Bethesda is ripping the fruits of work done over 8 years ago with their Elder Scrolls games, that they are using gameplay and a setting that is even older on Oblivion than the gameplay and setting of Fallout.

So they should be kinder to the old games.

And I didn't read much disappointment on the articles, there's some confusion there.
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August 29th, 2007, 20:00
good recon mission, NMA
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August 29th, 2007, 20:42
Originally Posted by father lamat View Post
You wanted to be disappointed and you were. Shocking how that turned out.
You want to think we were inherently pre-biased to the point where we couldn't be convinced of anything and you do. Bet you didn't even have to read the preview for that

Originally Posted by txa1265 View Post
One thing that stuck with me was the bit near the end of the demo about the group of reporters who all clapped and laughed at all the right moments. You know most of them have seen this demo more than once before, and are engaging in a ritualistic dance with Bethesda … who knows how *that* will end …
One of the Gamespy reporters was seeing it for the fourth time. FOURTH. And he still laughed at all the right queues.

The group I was with seemed to be more international and level-headed. Good thing too, I would've been pretty disgusted by the behaviour in SuA's demo
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August 29th, 2007, 20:48
Sounds great.

Shame NMA were so scared as to use aliases. Not being let in for being NMA would be a much bigger event. Bethsoft have never cared who people were from for press events in my experience.

VATS sounds completely different to RTwP, and looks like it's good as well. Good article
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August 29th, 2007, 21:20
Silencer did apply under NMA and was turned down, kalniel.

VATS looks completely the same as RTwP. Believe me.
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August 29th, 2007, 21:32
You want to think we were inherently pre-biased to the point where we couldn't be convinced of anything and you do.
You lived up to my expectation in the exact same manner the game did to your's. We all win.
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August 30th, 2007, 00:43
Originally Posted by mactbone View Post
Really?



Someone tell VD that Dragon Age is not possible today. Oh, and ignore Van Buren which was being worked on four years ago.

I wonder when the Modern Age started.
To be clear:

VD's game is called 'age of destruction'. Dragon Age is PC RPG, made by Bioware.

I also find it interesting that Sander who applied in the name of NMA got turned down…
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