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Got bored and reinstalled Fallout 2


Scylla

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Back in the days I had never been able to complete Fallout 2 due to blocking bugs. Now we have all the patches and mods we need though, and 22 years after the release I reached the final cinematics. And WHAT A BLAST!

It motivated me to write an extensive review: https://steamcommunity.com/id/stscylla/recommended/38410/

Have you played it? Any feedback is very welcome.

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Fallout 1 & 2 are must-plays really! They are, in my mind, basics of computer RPG's in the same vein as Baldur's Gate 1 & 2, Jagged Alliance 2, The old X-Coms, Silent Storm.. I might be forgetting a few, but yeah..

I'll go check out your review, thank you!

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On 5/18/2022 at 1:32 AM, Hendrix said:

Every few years I tend to reinstall Fallout 2 and it's depth of atmosphere always slightly surprise me.

I also think the atmosphere in that game to be... refreshing? (especially after having played a good amount of Fallout 4 and 76).

What is it exactly? I have these conversations with my brother about movies/series.. Star Trek, Star Wars, Alien, Jurassic Park.. the list goes on. The old ones seem like works of art compared to anything recent that doesn't understand how to create atmosphere, suspense and a FEELING.

Is it because movies and video games used to take a slower approach? They give you time to really take in the atmosphere & let you feel the world you're thrown into.

Half-Life 1 & 2. Long intros. It lets you focus on what the setting is, it gives you time to get into the mood, the feel, the artistic side the devs wanted to express. Same goes for games like Fallout 1 & 2. The early part is you simply getting your bearings, no hand holding. YOU have to explore of your own will, no restrictions. You have time to feel the emptiness of the land, the despair, the void. Then you get into small towns, Junktown, Shady Sands, the Hub... and they all have their own feeling, their own type of inhabitants. Very few words need to be expressed to get the sense of what they society must live with.


You play Fallout 4, and well.. everywhere feels exactly the same, very generic. Every settlement and town are just like one another. The visuals are nice, but that's about it. A big sandbox with no feeling.


This is always one of those things where I try to be like that old grandpa smoking his pipe on his rocking chair, telling stories of old to his grand-children!! ūü§£

... and the kids nowadays, JUST. DON'T. UNDERSTAND!

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On 5/22/2022 at 8:23 PM, GODSPEED said:

What is it exactly?

Late reply, RL is a cruel master.

The first things that comes to my mind is actually the music in Fallout 2. IMHO the music instantly gives you a feel for whatever new area you visit and what to (to a degree atleast) expect from it.

I have found the writing of the game to be awesome aswell, it is just amazing how much character they were able to give the npcs with nothing but words (and yeah in a few cases the talking heads aswell).

In a way I belive this "simple" way of presenting npcs to the player actually puts Fallout 2 in an advantage over Fallout 4. Because there is just so much more you have to do and get right with a 3D model to give it the same "life" as a well writen, no sound, isometric npc. Why? Because the players imagination (if they have one) fills out the gaps.

Through the years I have come to view the old Fallout and Baldur's Gate games as interactive books rather than games.

For me there is also the constantly gritty feeling that Fallout conveys to the player, that the world is a dreadful place and it is not likley to get any better. Thats something I never feelt in the Bethesda games.

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2 hours ago, Hendrix said:

Through the years I have come to view the old Fallout and Baldur's Gate games as interactive books rather than games.


That is so true! Everything you said is spot on actually, I must also, again, agree with you. ūüėÜ

But this is the most interesting aspect you mentioned; imagination and filling in the blanks it the best part of storytelling. Naturally, I do believe that each of us have different ways to be compelled, immersed or entertained, and I will rant about that a little more in the next topic below.

I've actually explained this concept of storybook to some family members who do not play video games (like my parents, who almost think video games are for little children, it's like they never came out of the stone age or something).

Those two games are actually pretty intense, mature and gritty stories... probably a good thing my mom doesn't know about Viconia. ūü§£
 

2 hours ago, Hendrix said:

For me there is also the constantly gritty feeling that Fallout conveys to the player, that the world is a dreadful place and it is not likley to get any better. Thats something I never feelt in the Bethesda games.


Yep, I remember a few months ago, I believe we have also agreed that the Bethesda worlds are the most "interesting" ones out there. But this is where they create worlds in different ways.


I like Bethesda games in the same way I like going somewhere, I like seeing nature, an old village... there is little drama, but it's beautiful, relaxing and heightens your senses of exploration and curiosity. What if I go towards that noise of rushing water, or what are those cracking branches? A bear? A wolf? (ends up being a chipmunk ūüėā).

On the flipside, they don't know how to create atmosphere to play with your emotions, to make you feel something a little more powerful. Fallout 1 & 2 did this very well, as you explained. The feelings of loneliness, despair, survival.. it's a brutal world and you don't even need to have someone SAY it.

You realize this by the way the residents of that world live, how they are dressed, the state and condition of their homes, the land they live on, the community they must survive in.

On the other hand, you look at a game like:

1. Skyrim. Civil War??? What there is a war here?? WAIT!! let me just go explore the landscape first please, I'll be back later if I feel like it. Pesky dragon, just leave me alone please, I just want to see what is over the horizon!

2. Fallout 4. Single merchant "caravan" (yes, because a single cow with a few suitcases is enough to trade) going from settlement to settlement with 2 guards... when they could easily get jacked by a gang of roaming ghouls... sure.. makes sense.
I mean, it's supposed to be despair and decay, but I play it because I enjoy "exploring" the landscape and finding power armors to decorate my settlement.  !?!?


There is a huge disconnect between the emotions you SHOULD be feeling and what you actually feel. Nothing is left to the imagination... it's all VERY visually clear and kind of "mindless".


Sorry for repeating in my own words what you kind of explained, but I lose control when talking about the difference between the entertainment of the 90's and todays generic "junk".

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On 5/29/2022 at 6:54 PM, GODSPEED said:

Sorry for repeating in my own words what you kind of explained, but I lose control when talking about the difference between the entertainment of the 90's and todays generic "junk".

Yepp, so I started a new topic for us "old timers" to rant away in. Feel free to add to it. ūüėā

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  • 1 month later...

Good review Scylla! I especially like your recommendations at the end.¬†ūüĎć

 

On 5/29/2022 at 5:54 PM, GODSPEED said:

There is a huge disconnect between the emotions you SHOULD be feeling and what you actually feel. Nothing is left to the imagination... it's all VERY visually clear and kind of "mindless".

This is exactly my problem with modern games. No imagination required! I showed my sister Fallout 2 a few months back, and she said she couldn't tell what she was looking at, and that my character looked like a black smudge!!!

 

Oh and like Hendrix says, music is very important. Any music from the early Fallouts instantly drags me straight back into the good times. I still find myself looking up soundtracks from the older games like Fallout, Baldur's Gate, Rainbow Six and such.

 

On 5/29/2022 at 2:38 PM, Hendrix said:

Through the years I have come to view the old Fallout and Baldur's Gate games as interactive books rather than games.

That's a great way to describe it.

 

Has anyone tried the big Fallout 2 mods like Resurrection, Nevada, or Olympus? I finished Resurrection and it was very high quality. It actually felt like an official sequel/prequel... It takes place between 1 and 2.

Olympus was good too but very different... I haven't tried Nevada yet.

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  • 1 month later...

I am an old-school gamer as well, having started my experiences with the Atari 2600 and early handheld games in 1980, and then moving onto the Atari 800XL (while sidelining into a few Nintendo Game & Watch handhelds), the Amstrad CPC 464, the Commodore Amiga A500 and A1200, before finally going on the PC, back in 1994. I have alternated between the PC, XBox (1st Gen and 360) and the iPad but I consider myself for the most part these days, always a PC gamer.

I have great memories of old games and while I still enjoy new games, I am more select in what I pick as so much these days just bores me as soon as I hear about them. It seems the more a game is pushed and talked about by every website, magazine and modern gamer, the more I want them to shut up talking about them. Elden Ring? I couldn't care less. Talk about a MOBA, Battle Royale or MMO? Personally not interested. I even thought Call Of Duty was overrated when it reached the height of its popularity and any criticism I made about its multiplayer, you'd think I was hitting a kitten with a sledgehammer. I've pretty much stuck to single player gaming in the last 10 years as well, only really missing co-op gaming. All the trends that the big games publishers insist upon such as season passes, pre-order bonuses, live services, microtransactions, etc. just seem so far away from the games of yesteryear. You don't really get to play games you want to play, instead you get to play games they want you to play.

I think creativity has waned in the last 10-15 years, with none of the big publishers wanting to take risks. Instead, it lies within the hands of smaller companies and indie developers (kind of like the old days then?). They are making the games I find myself more interested in but still more could be done. I'm still waiting for someone to remake Covert Action!

I loved Fallout 2 with it being one of my favourites of the franchise. I have played all of the Fallout games (including Fallout: Tactics, Brotherhood Of Steel and the "freemium" Fallout: Shelter) except for Fallout 4 and '76. I haven't felt the urge to play 4 and seeing that you encounter a Deathclaw near the start of the game without the actual threat of it just seemed wrong to me. I know people that had never played a Fallout game before start with 4 and have no idea of the mythology of Deathclaws and to fear them until strong enough.

Fallout 2 had so many great locations, characters and weapons. The game was huge as well. When I once went back and played Fallout 1 again after finishing 2, it seemed so short in comparison. There are purists who don't like the 2nd game and say that there are too many pop culture references, especially for the random encounters with Star Trek and Monty Python references, to name a few, but I loved it. There is also a Mike Tyson reference in there with one of the boxers, called The Masticator because he can bite your ear off.
 

1 & 2 were amongst the first games that I made note of the voice actors and then looked out for them in any other game, having been familiar with them already in movies. Actors like Clancy Brown, Keith David and Ron Perlman.

I enjoyed Fallout 3 and New Vegas and in certain ways, their move to 3D was better. In the earlier games you didn't really travel through the wasteland between each location and only really saw it if you experienced a random encounter, caravan or got attacked. Instead, your travels were more around each specific location.

Those earlier games handled the depiction of Super Mutants better though as they were always heavily armed. In 3, their basic weapon was a rifle. In 1 & 2 their basic weapon was a minigun (which also meant you needed to keep your finger near the Quick Load key on your keyboard). The Vaults were better depicted as well. Shiny looking and high tech when in use, creepy when abandoned. Encountering a Vault in 3 and New Vegas never felt as thrilling as the earlier games in my view, simply because they never looked expensive enough. Spending so much time in the wasteland with rusted out wrecks, damaged buildings and scrapyard metal walls in 1 and 2, and then finding a place like The Glow or the Sierra Army Depot was really stepping into the unknown, especially when there was only backup power on and robots were all around, silently waiting on standby for something to activate them.

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On 8/29/2022 at 10:20 PM, Solaris_Wave said:

I think creativity has waned in the last 10-15 years, with none of the big publishers wanting to take risks. Instead, it lies within the hands of smaller companies and indie developers (kind of like the old days then?). They are making the games I find myself more interested in but still more could be done. I'm still waiting for someone to remake Covert Action!

I like to put it like this; game publishers used to be handled by nerds and gamers until businessmen noticed gaming was a sector they could capitalize profits with. It has since fallen into the neverending loophole that, unless the crowd screams in terror and hate, they simply make the business move of doing as little as possible for the most profit as possible.


In the late 90's and early 2000's, I used to look up to Electronic Arts for sports games and there was a time they seemed to be really hitting the market with great ideas: Battlefield 1942, Battlefield 2... then, well.... we all see that has gone.

Creativity is replaced with productivity. Quality replaced with quantity. Gaming replaced with capitalism (and I hate using the term capitalism as if I was some anti-this or that, not the case).
 

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For me, Electronic Arts was known around the time you mentioned, for publishing great games with good production values, but at the same time buying up and shutting down some of the best developers around.

Ubisoft had a lot of variety and plenty of great games under the Tom Clancy banner (even if Clancy had no connection to it). I enjoyed a lot of their games. Their problem was later following the same open world format. I was finding (and still find) that new games come out faster than I can play them and there is always lots to do (or lots of travelling around to do).

Activision for me is the difficult one. They seemed to only end up releasing and updating the same few game franchises. I thought Call Of Duty was fun enough but definitely not God's gift to gaming and first-person shooters that everyone else pertained it to be, and that was at its peak (Modern Warfare 1 and 2). I enjoyed many of their games before that era though and have fond memories of the Battlezone reboot from the late 90s. I don't think I have bought an Activision game in the last 12 years and probably wouldn't at the moment anyway because I despise Bobby Kotick with a sincere passion.

My favourite publisher was Microprose. They brought out Gunship and Gunship 2000, Silent Service, F-19 Stealth Fighter, Pirates!, Covert Action, B-17 Flying Fortress, Civilisation, X-Com/U.F.O.: Enemy Unknown, Master Of Orion 1 and 2 along with so many others. During the mid to late 80s and throughout the 90s, their games, particularly the simulators, came in big boxes (before everyone was doing it), with big manuals, maps and plenty of background data. I really felt I was getting more than just a 'game'.

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  • 10 months later...

I like the old oldgames, like Fallout 1&2 better than the newer ones, too.

Like you all mentioned above; cause of better athmosphere, more authencity and it felt, like, they had more SOUL in it.

Why is that so? Maybe different reasons. 2 of them might be:

The creators from once had more fantasy. There was a time, netflix and amazon and so on doesnt exist..."Really?!?"

So reading books was more common. This helped develop your OWN fantasy. Not just follow some pictures in screen, somebody created with his imagination of the Storyline.

Second, nowadays superb grapix shall compensate unimaginative storylines (games, movies).

Maybe also a reason, why classics are reborn over and over again, there are too little new ideas. So cover something old, everybody liked. And most of the Times, ruin the try.

So lets hope, Ja3 isnt like that (but im optimistic :).

I just hope it will a bit like a 'back to the past' feeling.

 

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