Universal acclaim - based on 57 Critics What's this?

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Generally favorable reviews- based on 716 Ratings

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  • Summary: Vault-Tec engineers have worked around the clock on an interactive reproduction of Wasteland life for you to enjoy from the comfort of your own vault. Included is an expansive world, unique combat, shockingly realistic visuals, tons of player choice, and an incredible cast of dynamic characters. Every minute is a fight for survival against the terrors of the outside world – radiation, Super Mutants, and hostile mutated creatures. From Vault-Tec, America's First Choice in Post Nuclear Simulation. Vault 101 - Jewel of the Wastes. For 200 years, Vault 101 has faithfully served the surviving residents of Washington DC and its environs, now known as the Capital Wasteland. Though the global atomic war of 2077 left the US all but destroyed, the residents of Vault 101 enjoy a life free from the constant stress of the outside world. Giant Insects, Raiders, Slavers, and yes, even Super Mutants are all no match for superior Vault-Tec engineering. Yet one fateful morning, you awake to find that your father has defied the Overseer and left the comfort and security afforded by Vault 101 for reasons unknown. Leaving the only home you've ever known, you emerge from the Vault into the harsh Wasteland sun to search for your father, and the truth. [Bethesda Softworks] Collapse
Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 55 out of 57
  2. Negative: 0 out of 57
  1. 100
    After this game-experience negative points are hard to find. Sure, the radio program is not mind-blowing and the third-person-view is suboptimal. But this doesn't matter, as Fallout 3 is wonderful and even a class better than Bethesda's last title - Oblivion.
  2. 100
    This is the kind of hugely ambitious game that doesn't come around very often, and when it does, you'd be a fool not to play it and enjoy the hell out of it and look forward to the day (next-next-gen?) when the fidelity of open-world RPGs takes another big step closer to the uncanny valley's far side.
  3. Fallout 3 is a game that hits all the right notes and excels in being a role-playing game that wishes to challenge the genre to bring something bigger and better.
  4. And that's the draw of the game: interacting with a living, breathing world that centers on you as the star. [Holiday 2008, p.60]
  5. A flawed masterpice for the ages. [Summer 2009, p.76]
  6. Kids, Fallout 3 is Oblivion with guns hands down. Again, that's not a bad thing, but it feels like Bethesda missed an opportunity here by playing things safe and that's fine.
  7. Yet the final product has been injured by this ambition, by having too many options and locations, the quality is spread thin and the lack of restrictions can daze some players.

See all 57 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Negative: 17 out of 162
  1. Oct 14, 2012
    Utterly amazing. Long hours of game-play, amazing story line, many side quests, large map, and amazing DLC. This is my favorite game, my previous being Fallout: New Vegas. Expand
  2. BrianTomson
    Feb 2, 2009
    This was the best game i have ever played. I have beet in three times in the last week once i start playing i can't stop, it is very addicting. This totally blows away any other games i have ever played in the past, if they ever make a sequel i can not wait to get it and hopefully it will be as awesome as Fallout 3 Expand
  3. Aug 22, 2012
    A great game, a change of perspective in RPG, amazing story-line a must buy and play, like all other Bethesda games had some problems in the launch, but like always they fixed with the patches, game is amazing, suck you in, game play difficulty can be changed on the run, like the other Bethesda titles and everything else that makes a perfect game. Expand
  4. BilltheWhizz
    Nov 2, 2008
    First off i think that this game is better than oblivion, i don't understand why it scored less on the metacritic score. it does have a few bugs (don't go playing around in the ruble) and it can be frustrating at time's (be careful how you shoot), plus the conversation can be a tad lame; but overall a great game i can tell its going to very lengthy, well worth the money. one huge tip i would give is to keep plenty of different saves, and make sure you save before you do something drastic. A GOOD BUY. Expand
  5. Oct 2, 2010
    Wow. Only 5,000 character reviews allowed? That's not nearly enough to describe the beauty of this game. But anyways, guess what? This game is one of the best games ever. Bioshock and Fallout 3 are the best FPS-RPG hybrids in the world. And guess what? They both came out for the PS3 at roughly the same date. Bioshock came a week earlier on the PS3, and I say the PS3 because Bioshock didn't come out on the PS3 until about a year after every other version. Anyways, what can I say? You're born, and you make your gender, name, looks, etc. Then you're suddenly 1 year old, and you're introduced to the actual mechanics. Then you're 10, and you're given your Pip-Boy, along with a BB-Gun for your birthday. Then you're 16, and you have to take a test to see where you fit into in the world. Then you're 19, and for some reason, your dad is gone. He disappeared and escaped from your home, vault 101. Vaults are underground shelters, and were created because of the ongoing Nuclear War. Everyone is looking for you since they apparently think you know where he is, which you really don't. After a few tasks, you get out into the real world. Now, this is all the reason why this game got a 9 instead of a 10. The intro, and that's really my only grudge, other then a few glitches. The real world is nothing like you're used to. It's a barren wasteland that you don't even recognize. You go to a nearby town to find more about your father and where the hell he went, and that's about the point that I got to. Now, the great thing about this game is the amount of options. You can choose to shoot the head, the torso, the right arm, the left arm, the weapon, the right leg, and the left leg in the brilliant system known as V.A.T.S. You can choose side quests. You can choose to save people. You can choose to kill people. Even the conversations have options. No matter what, you always have a say in what you do. The combat is the weakest part, though. Even though that's not saying much. That's like saying that 1 YouTube video is worse then the best YouTube video. The combat doesn't feel like how combat in a FPS should be. Bioshock did combat better. But other then that, this is one of the greatest games in existence. And this is where I draw the line. Expand
  6. Oct 19, 2010
    Fallout 3 is a massive game and to this day I still haven't even scratched the surface, but I've played for about 10 hours on my current character and it manages to at least nearly equal Oblivion. It's not quite as amazing as Oblivion was when it released, but it comes close. The combat is great and the quests dynamic. There's little to complain about, except for the bugs which are common in every Bethesda game. Expand
    Nov 5, 2008
    In comparison to the earlier Black Isle Studios Fallouts, Bethesda's Fallout has: One-dimensional, illogical and forgettable characters with little to no personality. Simple, linear, unoriginal narrative. Poorly-written narrative. Poorly-written dialogue. Poorly-voiced dialogue. None of the series' trademark moral ambiguity. No real freedom (there are unkillable NPCs, unavoidable combat etc.). No real choices or consequences. Tactical combat has been removed. Importance of skills/perks/traits removed. Traits removed. Psychologically and emotionally complex quests no longer present. Nuclear power was a feared thing in post-apocalyptic Fallout, and the issue was dealt with intelligently with much subtle social commentary. In Fallout 3, you can shoot nuclear-powered cars with your nuclear catapult (early in the game...), in a town built around an unexploded nuclear bomb. Fallout 3 fails to deal with any of the interesting human issues that Fallout did. The game lacks any semblance of thoughtfulness. It's also shorter. And easier. The game abuses and contradicts established lore. Fallout 3 fails to even pathetically imitate it's decade-old predecessors' design, originality or meaningfullness. Let alone exceed it. Even when considered, unfairly, outside the context of being a sequel, it is an exceptionally arrogant, incompetent and poorly designed game all on its own. The animations are clunky and awkward. AI is atrocious. Combat is awkward. World textures and character models are ugly and lacking. Art direction is poor. Much of the crowded (who would have thought nuclear winter would be so claustrophobic?) "wasteland" is sloppily and lazily copy-pasted from place to place. The musical score is uninspired and in the style of LOTR-esque epic-fantasy (in fact it sounds very similar to Oblvion...) - which is completely inappropriate in this game's setting. To top it off, the whole thing is buggy and poorly optimized. And Bethesda's attitude towards the original games' fans has been utterly pathetic. Expand

See all 162 User Reviews

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