Friday, March 27, 2009
Welcome to Pittsburgh!
Immeasurably Fallout 3 has always existed as a world of grey and even more morally grey choices. Entrenched throughout the lore of Fallout are stories of survival and deep moral choices. The Pitt, Bethesda's latest DLC for Fallout, continues this trend. As the name elegantly suggests, the DLC sends you to Pittsburgh. Pittsburgh carries the honor of being one of the few cities in Fallout lore not to be directly ravaged by nuclear warfare. However, over the years the city has become a breeding ground for slavery and mass disease. Similar to the "Operation Anchorage" DLC, players must wait for a broadcast signal to access the content in the Pitt. From there you are thrust into the city with naught save your wits and must make do to survive in the city. However, if you are level 20 to which I assume most people are, there is little to no challenge in the combat.
Presentation is top notch as it was with the previous DLC pack. The city looks absolutely infested with Trogs, disease, Slavers and the cancerous fumes from the industry. Bethesda has done a wonderful job of nailing the overall presentation. The city looks truly dilapidated as it seems that each instrinsic detail of destruction was painted throughout your environment. You'll explore smoking ruins, brave diseased tunnels and recoil in horror witnessing the slaves being treated like vermin. Achieving a greater sense of immersion with the overall dreary and depressing atmosphere.
The game play is still very much intact from the main game. If you enjoyed the combat in the main game, then this is a very natural and easy transition for you. However, you have two new weapons at your disposal; the Auto Axe and the Infiltrator. The Auto Axe is a wondrously crude chainsaw like blade that eviscerates enemies horrifically. The latter is a small submachine gun with an afixed scope to make combat outside of the system of VATs slightly easier. You'll be using plenty of these weapons throughout the course of Pitt's four to five hour experience. While it doesn't change the game-play in any significant fashion, it provides an innumerous amount of fun.
The story of the Pitt is a wonderfully crafted, albeit predictable tale of freedom and salvation. It provides the series staple of showing gamers the grey side of morality. Good and evil are definable concepts to you. There is no angel or devil to judge your actions, no large consequence for your overall actions. Fallout is a world where the rules of your actions governs who lives and dies in the end. Not to spoil anything, but the big reveal at the end of the Pitt is incredibly intelligent in the support of both the "good" and "bad" karma routes. This leads to one of the "better" quests of Fallout showing you there is almost no "proper" way to finish the quest. Each outcome will make you feel a little remorseful in the end. I believe this to be a brilliant approach to the overall style of Fallout and captures the very essence of the series.
This results in a fair amount of replay value seeing the Pitt from the savior of the slaves and the self-glorified bastard. Is it worth 800 Microsoft points? That depends; If your a fan of Fallout 3 this pack is for you. While it may be on the short side, it provides you with a great experience that will hold you over until "Broken Steel" is released. Eight out of Ten