Continuing my Day of Plagiarism, allow me to pull directly from Alec Meer’s IGN UK review of Fallout 3: “So it’s tragic that the often awful production values make a fool of it so regularly. Whenever you’re really settling into the game and thinking what a wonderful world it is, it goes and does something incredibly stupid and clumsy, and the whole illusion shatters. It’s a truly fabulous RPG in so many ways, but we desperately wish Bethesda had saved the money they burned on unnecessarily hiring Liam Neeson and Malcom McDowell to voice a couple of key characters, and spent it instead on more actors, rehearsals, better script-writers and animators, another proof-reader… Clearly, it’s one of the must-buy games of the year, and it’ll prove impossible not to lose yourself to it for a good couple of dozen hours. If only Bethesda could escape their own bad habits and sloppiness though – then it would have been one of the must-buy games of the decade.”
I have to be blunt: I was very disappointed in Oblivion and I suspected that, given its overwhelming sales, Bethesda employees would make the mistake of thinking they’d done the right thing with that game’s boring, desolate simplicity and pathetic production values. I feared we’d see more Oblivion and less Morrowind in Fallout 3, and while all the reviews are racing each other to rub the game’s feet (even Meer winds up giving it a solid 8.8), these complaints are exactly what I suspected we’d see.
That said, I will be buying Fallout 3 today, despite the growing mountain of games that this holiday release cycle has borne upon my shelf. Why? Not for anything Bethesda did, but rather for everything Ubisoft failed to do.
You see, Far Cry 2 is such an immense disappointment that I’m literally enduring it rather than playing at this point, only a scant week after purchase. I’d expected to forgo Fallout 3 and stick with Ubi’s open world shooter for several more weeks, but I just can’t do it. I crave alternative sustenance, and despite the fact that I worry Fallout 3 will fail to deliver, much as Far Cry 2 has, I am a creature of weak and short attention span. With luck I’ll be wrong and this’ll be more “Morrowind with Guns” than “Oblivion with Guns.”