A short article about game UX issues that have been on my mind (somewhat succinctly, as it was originally written for Twitter).
Game designers spend a lot of time tuning the difficulty of combat and puzzles, but what about the narrative or campaign? Obtuse campaigns can be frustrating, while others “hand-hold” – rob players of gratification – if the golden path is too obvious. How can design balance these issues?
A month or two after Fallout 4 launched I started my second character and something immediately bothered me: the male and female player characters have different backgrounds. This has been criticized for falling short of gender neutrality and for practical reasons – the character’s skills and knowledge – but my big issues are with the character’s emotional journey. Continue reading Everyone’s War: Backstory and engagement in Fallout 4
Every day that goes by without an official Fallout 4 announcement is just another day of doom and gloom for the legions of fans. Me? I’m not worried.
I’m a huge Fallout fan – take ten seconds to browse my articles if you’re not sure – and I’m very excited for the prospect of Fallout 4. So are millions of other fans, many of whom are writhing at the looming five-year anniversary of the last installment, Fallout: New Vegas. This was exacerbated by Bethesda announcing their first-ever E3 press event in June, 2015, sending fans of both Fallout and The Elder Scrolls into a frenzy of speculation.
The Fallout series of role-playing video games have been well-received and popular since Fallout was released in 1997 as â€œAmerica’s first choice in post-nuclear simulation.â€ Post-apocalyptic video games have been numerous, yet the Fallout games stand out for their immersion and complexity. Fallout has managed to transcend the traditional combat- and leveling-focused RPGs to satisfy players on a much deeper level.
At least, the Fallout games transcended the typical genre offering until Fallout: New Vegas. Never before has a canonical, major release Fallout game received such hedged reviews from fans and critics. Yet, New Vegas seemed to have all the ingredients of a stellar Fallout game: an expansive world, factions to meet, choices to make, and excellent casting, all centered around a sweeping and nuanced regional conflict. Why, then, did it feel incomplete? There was something missing from New Vegas that, as players and critics have remarked, makes it feel more like a really big Fallout 3 expansion rather than a Fallout game in its own right.
my EDC radio – and my only amateur band transceiver, in fact – is a Yaesu VX-170 topped with a Diamond SRH-320A antenna. this radio was a gift from my late Elmer, WA6UBE (“Elma”, “Elmette”?), and came with the Diamond antenna. as you can see, it’s a really big antenna, but it performs well in urban areas (and i don’t have the original duck). it pulled a fairly line-of-sight 5W 26-mile run to a repeater at S3-4 so, hey, not too shabby.
so i’ll just say it: it’s everything we wanted. Â (except for the performance glitches. and losing a couple hours worth of saved games. Â sigh. back to Goodsprings.)
i’ll have more from the midnight release in Sunnyvale, CA… Â but that’ll wait. Â you think i’m gonna wait this long and put it all on hold for a silly blog? Â no, no, i’m just killing time ’til i’ve woken up enough to face the Wasteland again.