Chris Avellone on Fallout 3

Discussion in 'NMA News and Information' started by Brother None, Jul 1, 2013.

  1. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    Obsidian CCO & Fallout 2 writer & Fallout: New Vegas DLC director Chris Avellone has talked about Fallout 3 before, but it came up again in this interview with Anon of Holland, about his favorite game of recent years.<blockquote>AoH: Taking a step away from recent developments, what would you say is your favorite ‘modern’ (post-2005) Role-Playing Game and why? Which are your favorite ‘modern’ characters?

    MCA: My evaluations are somewhat different than what people might expect, since I’m approaching it from a critique perspective, and looking at how elements were realized. I don’t play a lot of Japanese RPGs (this isn’t out of bias, it’s due to time), and I also don’t solely play RPGs (I try to branch out into other genres when possible to see how they solved some gameplay issues or how they realized their vision). One of my most recent favorite RPG in terms of design principles was Fallout 3, and aside from the sense of freedom and exploration reward, there was one other outstanding reason – they turned almost every obstacle and hazard into an opportunity for reward for the player, which I thought was great. Simple examples of this include the ability to pick up and use mines in the environment and the fact dead-ends often had containers and boxes in them embedded in the rubble – this sounds minor, but it’s a way of maximizing gameplay that I appreciate.

    My favorite characters weren’t in RPGs, they were in other titles. In Saint’s Row III, I thought Zimos was amazing (plus the voice acting and filter as well – I would call him in just to hear him talking in battle), and the way [Telltale's] The Walking Dead turned one of my habitually-hated stereotypes (escort quest and the escort is a kid – double hate) and made it compelling through execution.</blockquote>Thanks Codex.
  2. Jabu

    Jabu It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Mar 5, 2008
    In a game where danger only comes in the form of a few QTE encounters, I don't see how you wouldn't avoid the typical issues people have with escort quests.
  3. Walpknut

    Walpknut This ghoul has seen it all

    Dec 30, 2010
    You can always make it so the escortee ceases to exist uring any situation were danger arises, but that is just stupid. I don't think people would mistake that for good mechanics.
  4. Felspawn

    Felspawn It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Nov 15, 2010
    got to love this comment :lol:

  5. Dukeanumberone

    Dukeanumberone It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Jul 11, 2012

    Didn't see that coming.
  6. Lexx

    Lexx Background Radiant
    Moderator Modder

    Apr 24, 2005
    Well, "in terms of design principles" and then he mentiones loot drops at the end of tunnels, etc. So yeah, I can understand it. Even if the item quality you could find in dungeons was super shit, the idea of finding at least something isn't bad. After all, why would you want to walk through a dungeon if you are getting really nothing out of it.

    New Vegas did the same. Every dungeon / area has at least something somewhere to find for the player. Either information about the game world, special weapons or random loot.

    He is not praising Fo3 for its writing or c&c, so I see no reason to get a rage meltdown.
  7. woo1108

    woo1108 Vault Senior Citizen

    Sep 27, 2012
    :clap: good point.

    I think he made far better designed game: Dead money.
    Only good thing comes from fo3 is let MCA to make Dead money.
    there are little game that have great exploring than DM even it's small DLC.
  8. JimTheDinosaur

    JimTheDinosaur Vault Dweller

    Mar 17, 2013
    Not sure why he'd think that, the days of NMA as a glittering gem of hatred being long passed and all. Probably by the time Fallout 4 comes along the only outrage will be how Bethesda dumbed it down from the complexity of FO3.

    If only Rosh hadn't been purged, now there was a man who could <strike>kill a man</strike> enforce orthodoxy.:monocle:
  9. woo1108

    woo1108 Vault Senior Citizen

    Sep 27, 2012
    Anyway why call him MCA?
    I can't find where M came from though C from chris and A from avellone.
  10. Felspawn

    Felspawn It Wandered In From the Wastes

    Nov 15, 2010
    lets be honest here FO3 has gotten a LOT of hate around here. its seen as completely awful and without merit, its nice to see someone like Chris, whos opinion i can imagine we all value, can point out some of the positive aspects of the game.
  11. Tagaziel

    Tagaziel Panzerkatze Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Dec 10, 2003
    Mister Chris Avellone.

    CA may have sounded a bit too much like a shorthand for veneral disease.
  12. woo1108

    woo1108 Vault Senior Citizen

    Sep 27, 2012
    I don't think he is good gamer....
    He even can't beat Arcanum

    I know he is good writer and designer...but..hell....
    Why can't he beat wolf??
  13. valcik

    valcik So Old I'm Losing Radiation Signs

    Dec 20, 2008
    I'm slightly disconcerted.
    Picking up and using mines, that's concept as old as gaming itself. It was used many times before the F3, look at Jagged Alliance for example. The same goes for loot scattered in the dead ends, it's older than PnP roleplaying.
    MCA is trolling like a boss. :roll:

    edit: Ah, he's referring to his visit of Amsterdam in that article. That explain a lot, Brother None obviously supplied him with some strong drugs! Poor MCA. :mrgreen:
  14. sea

    sea Vault Senior Citizen

    Oct 5, 2009
    I think it's telling and quite conspicuous that everything Chris Avellone praises about Fallout 3 is indeed well done, yet he completely ignores things like world design, quest design, story, dialogue, C&C and so on in his praises. Although he seems to appreciate the "experience" of the game and its ideas, which is fair, he is also kind of oblivious to execution, including balance problems or things like awful combat.

    I certainly agree with a lot of the positives and do think a lot of stuff Bethesda did was clever; however I just think it's very interesting that as a writer, Chris seems to refuse to talk about the things he'd know best.
  15. FearMonkey

    FearMonkey Vault Senior Citizen

    Oct 12, 2011
    I think he's just being nice so that Bethesda will let him work in the Fallout universe again.
  16. egalor

    egalor Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    Jun 20, 2007
    Frankly, the only reasonable explanation I see behind that MCA's statement on F3.
  17. Morbus

    Morbus Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Aug 16, 2006
    How exactly did I manage to be friends with him on Facebook again? o_O I'm not sure he even knows who I am....

    Anyway, this statement is just the usual PR bullshit. And that considered, he did a heck of a job in saying something mildly interesting and relevant...
  18. Per

    Per Vault Consort Staff Member Admin

    Apr 1, 2004
    As has already been said, there's little strange or surprising about this. Clearly Bethesda are good at what they do and a designer can appreciate that. (It's just that a lot of people don't consider what they do to be particularly Fallout.)
  19. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    depends what we are talking about.

    Their visual design, which speaks for their concept artists, is stunning. But I do believe that not all of their art is done in house, many studios don't, and use free lancers in many parts or at least for a given time, because it makes sense for many projects. Once the game is past the concept phase you don't really need those people anymore and if you don't have other projects to keep them busy for the next 4-5 months ... yeah. Expensive stuff! They might have a small core of concept artists which are working for them and also freelancers they hiver again for each projects working together with those people. Afterall concept artists are people that are used with jumping between studios and companies a lot.

    At the point where you dont have to do any concept or design anymore, once the vision is down on paper to say that, its up to the level designers, animation artist and programmers to make those visions a reality, and this from my own experience, depends not so much on creativity but how to actually use the programms i am a bit of a Wizard with Illustrator, because I love the programm and thus I know very well how to use it and as far as such programms goes its a lot more important to have a certain workflow, it makes you faster, more efficient, and you do less errors or you can correct them much faster and easier its one of the reasons why they are looking today rather for people that can actually do the design AND the programming for a website and not just a designer. It is also the point where skilled and experienced leaders come in, like art directors. How well they can actually motivate their teams for example.

    Though as soon we start to talk about other parts of the Bethesda "design" things start to be different.

    Like the game UI, which is always so shit in Bethesda games that the first thing you do, is looking for mods fixing things, that should not be even there anymore ... after they made like ... countless of games, hell they even manage to make it worse over time, like in Skyrim, which is placing "prettiness" over user-friendliness. I mean allowing the use of a Mouse should be at least the BARE MINIMUM they could offer. A lot of the things that are a standart in todays gaming are totally ignored here, making it VERY tedious and frustrating to use the skills and abilities Skyrim has to offer. Again I praise them for the effort they have put in the look ... but anything else?

    Just take a look and decide for your self.

    *Also, I am not attacking you :p
    I just love to argue.

    He's not some unquestionable god though, and even a person like he ... can like "mediocre" entertainment to say that. For me F3 goes even a bit further then that, because I yeah, call it outright "bad", not just as Fallout game, but also as RPG, if we completely ignore Fallout.

    I am not holding his opinion against him. Just saying. Most of the criticism Fallout 3 has received, here at least, was justified and with a reason, not just because "we" are old-school Fallout purists or such nonsense, while I am sure SOME are like that, MOST of us, dislike Fallout 3 first as mediocre/bad RPG and then as Fallout game.

    I mean yeah, what does it help if Fallout 3 is doing something right here and there if you have 5 other things that are so bad that you don't even notice the good things. Hell, that cave filled with immortal children alone destroys half of the game because its so poorly written and so inconstant with the rest of the world ... no reason to discuss that part again, its been discussed to death already.

    Mr. Avalone can praise the game for what it does well as much as he wants. No problem with that. But it will not let me ignore the many things F3 is doing wrong, where it really counts, like mediocre yeah ... bad writing. Imagine a racing game that has the best scenery you ever seen, but the worst driving mechanics ... you can praise the scenery as much as you want ... its not the core of the game.
  20. Morbus

    Morbus Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Aug 16, 2006
    Let me disagree with you there. Bethesda are NOT good a level design. World design maybe, if you don't count the whole suspension of disbelief thing, but their level design is atrocious. Unintuitive, hard to navigate, moronically proportioned levels are paramount in both Oblivion and Fallout 3. Skyrim is a bit better, from my experience, but it's quality in terms of level design is still way bellow the vast majority of action RPGs.