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Turning back the clock on Fallout

So, not happy with Fallout 3? If so, you’re crazy. Game of the year, in my not-so-humble opinion.

But even though this irradiated epic is one totally fine modern RPG, loaded with the actiony, first-persony stuff that you just have to have in the post-Oblivion era, the new game is worlds apart from its predecessors, released by Interplay in the 1990s. Wake up from a decade-long coma and you’ll wonder what happened to the isometric camera and turn-based combat. Oh, and Monica Lewinsky.

In short, the new boss is not the same as the old boss. As great as Fallout 3 is, hardcore types still in love with the first two Fallouts’ third-person point-of-view and oh-so-calculated battle mechanics must have a hard time accepting that these role-playing conventions went out of vogue at the same time as beret-wearing interns. Thankfully, these grizzled folk don’t have to come to grips with a new apocalyptic RPG, as modders have been putting in long hours to renovate the old ones for contemporary computers.

To get started, be sure to visit No Mutants Allowed immediately after digging those old Fallout boxes out of the closet. But be warned: this is a capital-H hardcore site filled with fanatics who think Fallout 3 pissed on the graves of its predecessors, so skip the attitude in the site’s forums and go straight to the mod index (hands up if you think the site admins screwed up by not naming this section the Vault), which has the most complete collection of Fallout files on the net.


With a few tweaks here and there, Fallout 2 shines up pretty nicely

As with most mod communities, the one here blends good and bad. Your mileage will vary as to which is which. But everyone will want to begin with Matt "Mash" Wells’ patches to get the 640x480 games running in higher resolutions for modern widescreen monitors. Then be sure to install Timeslip’s Sfall mods, which do a lot to remove the sluggish feel of the turn-based games. These small files make the Fallouts more palatable in today’s A.D.H.D. gaming world by cranking up movement and combat to ten times their original speeds, adding mousewheel support, and allowing play in a window.

From there, continue to get your mutated feet wet. Consider TeamX’s Patch 1.3.4, a handy file that addresses lingering bugs in the first Fallout. Look at Pal’s Fallout Update Mod for its introduction of three new quests and 27 new characters. And be sure to check into  Killap’s huge Restoration Project for Fallout 2, a veritable expansion pack that adds in a pile of locations, characters, and quests cut out of the original game by the developers at Black Isle Studios. All of the mods also seem to play nice with both the original Fallout games and the revamped XP- and Vista-compatible downloadable versions of the duo from Good Old Games, so you can go homebrewed without hunting around in a bargain bin.

The lone drawback to all of these great mods is that they can draw you into the past so often that you don’t take the time to fully appreciate Fallout 3. Try not to miss the classic-in-waiting that modders will be also obsessing over in a decade—unless, of course, a nuclear holocaust drives us into our Vaults.

MOD OF THE MONTH
FarCrysis (Crysis)


FarCrysis is exactly what it sounds like: the incestuous union of two great games

If you didn’t get enough of hunting the Jackal in the real Far Cry 2, soon you’ll be able to hunt the evil arms dealer again in the FarCrysis total conversion for Crysis. Creator Simon “Simrad” Radivoev is keeping the rough outline of the plot while crafting all-new missions to mix everything up. No word yet on a release date, although the mod has been in production since early 2008, so we just might see something playable soon.

December 16, 2008

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10 comments

  • berryween - January 7, 2009 12:40 a.m.

    PSSS: I love making people Mad (AKA I'm not that much of a geek to get angry over a comment)!!
  • berryween - January 7, 2009 12:38 a.m.

    izosity, when you create FO4 and it becomes a masterpiece, come back and talk, until then just realize FO3 is a fresh of breath air. PS: Awsome Article guys. PSS: I had my hand raised then felt stupid.
  • izosity - December 24, 2008 11:04 p.m.

    fallout 3 - characters seem 1 dimensional - doesnt matter what you do in fallout 3 you always end up in same places with the same choices(blow up megaton doesnt make a difference) - optional quests are not satisfying - its too ez - its not the isometric view we miss~ its the depth (and ability to kill children) + graphics loki_racer "Is Fallout 3 a great game? Yes. Is Fallout 3 a great follow-up to 1 and 2? No." especially 4 2008
  • Dinkymod - December 19, 2008 7:25 a.m.

    I've been looking forward to FarCrysis since I saw it on ModDB. I would love to mod Crysis, but they don't have any Maya exporting tools, only 3dsmax tools. I don't have 3dsmax, but more importantly, I HATE 3DSMAX.
  • loki_racer - December 19, 2008 4:05 a.m.

    Calling Fallout 3 has to be the largest overstatement of 2008. Please explain to me how being able to pick a few limited skills is anything more than a feeble attempt at an RPG. The zooming cut scenes are extremely annoying after the first two times. Is Fallout 3 a great game? Yes. Is Fallout 3 a great follow-up to 1 and 2? No.
  • may.be.vital - December 16, 2008 11:44 p.m.

    Crysis really is an amazing tool..... if my computer werent so old I would buy it
  • tunerracer - December 16, 2008 11:26 p.m.

    SECOND !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! ftw
  • Deathcon56 - December 16, 2008 11:09 p.m.

    FIRST Wow Farcrysis? Looks amazing
  • GamesRadarJoeMcNeilly - December 18, 2008 2:59 p.m.

    I <3 Interplay's old-ass RPGs - some of the best videogames EVAR!!!
  • Sebastian16 - December 16, 2008 11:53 p.m.

    All the kewlkids pirated Fallouts 1 & 2 before the release of the third to not be dumb.

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