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I can't think of any viable explanation for weapon damage increasing with skill for ballistic weapons.. at least for melee/unarmed one can say that damage increases with skill because as skill increases one gets to know where to hit where it hurts the most.

Firearm shot placement tends to matter a lot more than caliber or raw energy.

not in burst mode, and not with explosive ammo like rockets.

 

and since we're talking about a game that supports called shots, i think a better way to represent how skill affects shot placement which in turn affects damage, would be to make the skill govern the chance to hit or critically hit specific body parts that have better damage tables. it's a fairly good abstraction.

 

yes exactly

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So if you get good enough at shooting a pistol, you can make a shot to the kneecaps damage your opponant just as much as a headshot did when you were bad at it?

I was responding to his suggestion that it makes sense for melee damage to increase because of better blow placement but it doesn't make sense for firearms.

 

Anyway, I take that to mean you aren't planning on changing it :\

Poor inference.

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Do you prefer to PLAY games that use systems where the skill level of a given weapon (say small guns or rifles or melee or whatever) affects your accuracy or your damage or both? What I'm getting at is where you think the most fun balance lies between systems found infallout 1 (ie only affects accuracy, damage is purely item based) or deus ex and morrowind where it was primarily accuracy but a little effect on damage (please correct me if I am recalling these wrong) or the systems of say fallout 3 where it was primarily damage being affected with only a small effect on accuracy.

I don't really care what system is used as long as it allows me to build my character how I'd like and the gameplay is enjoyable. I thought the effects of skills on firearm accuracy in Bloodlines (for example) were pretty un-fun. There's something irritating to me about pointing at a wall ten feet away and hitting something 45 degrees off from the center of my crosshairs (it's been a while since I've played Bloodlines, so it might not have been that extreme, but it was nutty). New shooters are inaccurate with handguns, but Bloodlines' implementation both stretched the boundaries of realism (not necessarily top concern for me as a player) and made for frustrating gameplay (biggest issue). I completely disliked Morrowind's melee combat for similar reasons. Actually, that was more bothersome to me than Bloodlines' firearms because in Morrowind you would actually see the weapon hit the target but you'd still miss. Were the gunplay abstracted and removed heavily (as it is in Fallout 1 and 2), it probably wouldn't have been as irritating. F1 and F2's implementation only irritated me with things like flamethrowers at two hexes, but edge cases and wacky weapons will always cause problems unless you just get rid of them, which is sort of like cutting off the nose to spite the face sometimes.

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Relax ladies and gents since J.E. Sawyer is active today. :p

 

FO3 is 80% shooter and 20% crpg. Maybe 10%. Maybe 5% Anyway, so yes, more player skill less character skill. Far less clunky. Playing FPS combat in Fallout 3 feels like taking a broken down jalopy out for a drive. Sure it gets you there, but its hardly enjoyable.

 

If VATS didn't completely suck, I might not care so much. But VATS does completely suck. So.

 

Actually, I don't really care at all. It would just be my preference.

A move to something like S.T.A.L.K.E.R.? It's actually a hybrid of RPG/FPS, where the players can enhance the abilities of their characters through choosing equipment. The basic design direction is similar to Deus Ex: Invisible War but, IMO, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. managed to do it much better. So, ultimately, it comes down to the balance, I guess. Also, in reality, I don't think Obsidian team will remove the character development system in combat gameplay.

 

That said, there are a few probable cons in choosing the system where character skill matters.

 

1. The invested points to skills cannot be changed compared with equipment, which reduces the range of choices available in the combat gameplay. I know it's by design but quite many combats seem to be involved in FO3.

 

2. Another possible problem with the system of FO3* is that, less influence from scaling can make the game too easy for the players who heavily invested on the combat-related skills. I'm not a fan of Oblivion but it extended favored gameplay options with skill updates while its scaling system doesn't change the difficulty. The downside of this option is, however, as many people complained, that it makes the world feel less consistent. I think this is why the opinions of the players are divided when both systems are compared. * I haven't played FO3, so, this can be pointless.

 

3.

and since we're talking about a game that supports called shots, i think a better way to represent how skill affects shot placement which in turn affects damage, would be to make the skill govern the chance to hit or critically hit specific body parts that have better damage tables. it's a fairly good abstraction.

Some players will not be happy with the lack of well-placed shot through the skill of them, such as a headshot. However, even if the damages are determined by the skill of the characters, the damages/effects can be differentiated depending on which body part is shot, which would make the results include both skills of the characters and the players.

 

PS Well...this thread should be about story and plot...

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not in burst mode

At least in real life, it always matters. You have less control over where rounds are going with increased range and felt recoil, but your level of control (or lack thereof) doesn't change terminal ballistics. Soldiers with assault rifles don't just hold the weapon at hip level and blindly fire in the direction of enemies. Even an M16 or M4 with standard peep sights can regularly score tight three-shot burst groupings at 50 yards in the hands of a competent shooter.

 

Whether this needs to be modeled or abstracted in games is definitely a separate issue, but the person to whom I was responding implied that placement was not a factor with inflicted firearm damage but did think it made sense for melee weapons. The practical effects of ballistics -- whether it's from a baseball, a bullet, or a piece of shrapnel -- always have to do with what specifically is being hit, at what angle, with what applied force, etc. It's not just a matter of the ft-lb of force at the point of impact. You're effectively breaking apart a complicated living machine, not hitting a cube of ballistic gelatin.

 

and not with explosive ammo like rockets

Rockets/RPGs, like flamethrowers, are sort of screw-up-your-nice-RPG-system weapons if you want to be "realistic" with them. "Realistically" -- putting aside issues of weight and bulk, which even in F1 and F2 were stretched to absurdity -- rockets are awesome. Like, you win with rockets. Congrats. You have something that is incredibly easy to aim and shoot and will kill virtually anything within 20-40 yards of where it hits. People, armored personnel carriers, whatever you got. We don't hear stories about "rocket aces" or "flamethower aces" because once people learn the basics of their operation, the learning curve pretty much flattens out. Again, it doesn't mean that they shouldn't be in games, and it doesn't necessarily mean that no statistical model will support them, but they are dissimilar enough from traditional firearms that they often present some conceptual issues.

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I don't really care what system is used as long as it allows me to build my character how I'd like and the gameplay is enjoyable. I thought the effects of skills on firearm accuracy in Bloodlines (for example) were pretty un-fun. There's something irritating to me about pointing at a wall ten feet away and hitting something 45 degrees off from the center of my crosshairs (it's been a while since I've played Bloodlines, so it might not have been that extreme, but it was nutty). New shooters are inaccurate with handguns, but Bloodlines' implementation both stretched the boundaries of realism (not necessarily top concern for me as a player) and made for frustrating gameplay (biggest issue). I completely disliked Morrowind's melee combat for similar reasons. Actually, that was more bothersome to me than Bloodlines' firearms because in Morrowind you would actually see the weapon hit the target but you'd still miss. Were the gunplay abstracted and removed heavily (as it is in Fallout 1 and 2), it probably wouldn't have been as irritating. F1 and F2's implementation only irritated me with things like flamethrowers at two hexes, but edge cases and wacky weapons will always cause problems unless you just get rid of them, which is sort of like cutting off the nose to spite the face sometimes.

In Bloodlines, only the more basic firearms were like that, the mid-high end guns were pretty accurate.

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not in burst mode

At least in real life, it always matters. You have less control over where rounds are going with increased range and felt recoil, but your level of control (or lack thereof) doesn't change terminal ballistics. Soldiers with assault rifles don't just hold the weapon at hip level and blindly fire in the direction of enemies. Even an M16 or M4 with standard peep sights can regularly score tight three-shot burst groupings at 50 yards in the hands of a competent shooter.

 

Whether this needs to be modeled or abstracted in games is definitely a separate issue, but the person to whom I was responding implied that placement was not a factor with inflicted firearm damage but did think it made sense for melee weapons. The practical effects of ballistics -- whether it's from a baseball, a bullet, or a piece of shrapnel -- always have to do with what specifically is being hit, at what angle, with what applied force, etc. It's not just a matter of the ft-lb of force at the point of impact. You're effectively breaking apart a complicated living machine, not hitting a cube of ballistic gelatin.

I explained myself not thoroughly enough... I meant to say that in VATS one can target specific body parts with firearms, but with skill at 100 one does more damage to the same bodypart than with skill at 50. It's this I have trouble with explaining.

 

Melee/unarmed in VATS doesn't allow one to target limbs and one can merely target the body, so I surmized increased damage at level 100 could be explained by 'imagining' that during the VATS animation one would hit more vulnerable body parts compared to lower levels.

The ending of the words is ALMSIVI.

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At least in real life, it always matters. You have less control over where rounds are going with increased range and felt recoil, but your level of control (or lack thereof) doesn't change terminal ballistics. Soldiers with assault rifles don't just hold the weapon at hip level and blindly fire in the direction of enemies. Even an M16 or M4 with standard peep sights can regularly score tight three-shot burst groupings at 50 yards in the hands of a competent shooter.

 

Whether this needs to be modeled or abstracted in games is definitely a separate issue, but the person to whom I was responding implied that placement was not a factor with inflicted firearm damage but did think it made sense for melee weapons. The practical effects of ballistics -- whether it's from a baseball, a bullet, or a piece of shrapnel -- always have to do with what specifically is being hit, at what angle, with what applied force, etc. It's not just a matter of the ft-lb of force at the point of impact. You're effectively breaking apart a complicated living machine, not hitting a cube of ballistic gelatin.

 

Since FO:NV will most likely be a FPP game (hey, I can dream, can't I?), I'd love to see ironsights in the game (shouldn't it be a case of merely adjusting the position of the model or even making a faux scope that pops into place when the RMB is hit?), with your skill with that particular weapon affecting how much the weapon wobbles and how much you have to compensate for it, reload times, how fast your weapon breaks down (since the better you are, the more you know how to treat your gun right, skills in Fo1/2 include knowledge of proper maintenance of the weapons, after all) and running speed (since it's a wee bit harder to run with a big slab of junk in your sweaty palms).

 

As for the ballistics model, Fallout: Compendium author, Dubby, was working on formulas for damage calculation in Fo3 that are based on real-life physics and include factors like penetration, armour thickness and type etc., rectifying the "10mm Pistol penetrates Power Armour always" problem Fo3 suffered from.

 

Rockets/RPGs, like flamethrowers, are sort of screw-up-your-nice-RPG-system weapons if you want to be "realistic" with them. "Realistically" -- putting aside issues of weight and bulk, which even in F1 and F2 were stretched to absurdity -- rockets are awesome. Like, you win with rockets. Congrats. You have something that is incredibly easy to aim and shoot and will kill virtually anything within 20-40 yards of where it hits. People, armored personnel carriers, whatever you got. We don't hear stories about "rocket aces" or "flamethower aces" because once people learn the basics of their operation, the learning curve pretty much flattens out. Again, it doesn't mean that they shouldn't be in games, and it doesn't necessarily mean that no statistical model will support them, but they are dissimilar enough from traditional firearms that they often present some conceptual issues.

 

I wouldn't mind for them to be universally deadly weapons, to be honest. A rocket launcher (plz bring back Rockwell's BigBazooka) is damn effective, as you mentioned, and it should be. It'll make going up against enemies armed with them a challenge, a welcome break from shooting people in the face. It's fun (and deadly) in the F3: Compendium, where one well placed explosive rocket is enough to splatter even a power armour toting foe all over the area.

 

A bit of a miniboss approach.

Edited by Mikael Grizzly

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I explained myself not thoroughly enough... I meant to say that in VATS one can target specific body parts with firearms, but with skill at 100 one does more damage to the same bodypart than with skill at 50. It's this I have trouble with explaining.

 

Melee/unarmed in VATS doesn't allow one to target limbs and one can merely target the body, so I surmized increased damage at level 100 could be explained by 'imagining' that during the VATS animation one would hit more vulnerable body parts compared to lower levels.

I am not willing to put my words to the mouth of J.E. Sawyer but I think his point is that, since it is impossible to simulate reality, it would be wise to design the game system, putting emphasis on the game play. I don't think the majority stop to think logical explanation of proper abstraction of damages although something like Oblivion's scaling can brake the immersion in a much more direct manner.

 

Hence I thought it would be more constructive to discuss probable game-plays.

 

I wouldn't mind for them to be universally deadly weapons, to be honest. A rocket launcher (plz bring back Rockwell's BigBazooka) is damn effective, as you mentioned, and it should be. It'll make going up against enemies armed with them a challenge, a welcome break from shooting people in the face. It's fun (and deadly) in the F3: Compendium, where one well placed explosive rocket is enough to splatter even a power armour toting foe all over the area.

 

A bit of a miniboss approach.

Something like limited ammunition may be good enough for game balance issue but I don't think it is good gameplay-wise... Bloodlines' flame thrower is definitely effective but they are not fun to use...it was like an obligation to use it for bosses. Your description of rocket type weapons seem to be more for spectacles in the same league of gore effects, which seems to be the role of Fatman in FO3, though.

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Something like limited ammunition may be good enough for game balance issue but I don't think it is good gameplay-wise... Bloodlines' flame thrower is definitely effective but they are not fun to use...it was like an obligation to use it for bosses. Your description of rocket type weapons seem to be more for spectacles in the same league of gore effects, which seems to be the role of Fatman in FO3, though.

 

Gameplay-wise, I'd like to see it as one of those rare weapons that you treasure and use only in the most extreme of circumstances. Yes, a bit like the Fatman, but without the silliness of being a nuclear catapult.

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I explained myself not thoroughly enough... I meant to say that in VATS one can target specific body parts with firearms, but with skill at 100 one does more damage to the same bodypart than with skill at 50. It's this I have trouble with explaining.

 

Melee/unarmed in VATS doesn't allow one to target limbs and one can merely target the body, so I surmized increased damage at level 100 could be explained by 'imagining' that during the VATS animation one would hit more vulnerable body parts compared to lower levels.

Thanks for clarifying. I usually used melee outside of VATS, and I could typically hit the body parts I wanted to hit. In that sense, non-VATS gun use wasn't much different to me than non-VATS melee use.

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The comment about Bloodlines worries me. Of course, I could infer anything from the comment because it doesn't really say anything specific about NV. However, when I aim my weapon at the bad guy and start dishing out the heat, will my relfexes be more than incidently important. Moreover, let's say I want to use a less legitimate style of combat and go into VATS mode. If I have a 95% chance of scoring a torso shot from 5 feet away, does that mean I will always hit because it would be silly to miss?

 

Of course, I know from experience that folks can miss you even at relatively close range. I have had someone shoot at me with a rifle and miss where I would have expected someone to hit. Maybe not off by 45 degrees, but you get my point.*

 

I just want to have some clarity where you stand when it comes to PC skill/player reflexes. I know some player reflexes must be involved. After all, combat is in real-time, so the player will have to shoulder some of the burden no matter what. Nevertheless, that doesn't mean that you should shrug and say it looks silly to miss close opponents and so we're going to treat this like an FPS. Hey, I've been the odd man out before. I just want to verify where the design is going so I can start complaining about it at the earliest convenience.

 

*The only thing you can infer from this is that I'm a big wimp who will run from someone shooting at me.

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The comment about Bloodlines worries me. Of course, I could infer anything from the comment because it doesn't really say anything specific about NV.

I can't talk about F:NV's content or mechanics yet. I can talk about game content and mechanics in general and explain my own preferences as a player and the thought processes behind game development design decisions. But please, everyone, stop extrapolating this information into conclusions about F:NV. I'm sorry, but it is infuriating. I'm not designing this game according to my personal preferences as a player (which are actually pretty wide), nor does any specific design methodology automatically apply to the work we are doing on this project.

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I thought the effects of skills on firearm accuracy in Bloodlines (for example) were pretty un-fun. There's something irritating to me about pointing at a wall ten feet away and hitting something 45 degrees off from the center of my crosshairs (it's been a while since I've played Bloodlines, so it might not have been that extreme, but it was nutty). New shooters are inaccurate with handguns, but Bloodlines' implementation both stretched the boundaries of realism (not necessarily top concern for me as a player) and made for frustrating gameplay (biggest issue). I completely disliked Morrowind's melee combat for similar reasons. Actually, that was more bothersome to me than Bloodlines' firearms because in Morrowind you would actually see the weapon hit the target but you'd still miss. Were the gunplay abstracted and removed heavily (as it is in Fallout 1 and 2), it probably wouldn't have been as irritating. F1 and F2's implementation only irritated me with things like flamethrowers at two hexes, but edge cases and wacky weapons will always cause problems unless you just get rid of them, which is sort of like cutting off the nose to spite the face sometimes.

 

Yes, I agree that the cone implementation of skill vs spread is irritating and bad. I also think Morrowind screwed it up by not being very clear WHY you're missing.

I think a better system is to just be very obvious about the dieroll-- have your weapons always hit the crosshair, but have the game decide whether or not it actually connects with the enemy you're pointing at. And then have a little floating number when you're crosshair-over the enemy so the player knows when to not bother.

 

There, it properly abstracts itself with the floating number, and you never get irritating spread that hits, say the wall in front of you instead of what you're aiming at. It's probably a good idea to take out the tracers, though.

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The comment about Bloodlines worries me. Of course, I could infer anything from the comment because it doesn't really say anything specific about NV.

I can't talk about F:NV's content or mechanics yet. I can talk about game content and mechanics in general and explain my own preferences as a player and the thought processes behind game development design decisions. But please, everyone, stop extrapolating this information into conclusions about F:NV. I'm sorry, but it is infuriating. I'm not designing this game according to my personal preferences as a player (which are actually pretty wide), nor does any specific design methodology automatically apply to the work we are doing on this project.

 

Sorry. It's kind of hard though. If you post something like "I HATE HATE HATE HATE HATE games with brown dogs in them!! Ok well, back to working on the Dog City in New Vegas" It's hard not to read between the lines. :)

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It would be wise of us not to do something more than glancing at the thoughts of the designers since anything can change at this stage of the development. ...Well, I guess I have written this before.

 

Talking of the thoughts of the designers, what about watching the presentation of Chris Avellone showed in this thread. It's quite long and I haven't finished watching it, though.

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The comment about Bloodlines worries me. Of course, I could infer anything from the comment because it doesn't really say anything specific about NV.

I can't talk about F:NV's content or mechanics yet. I can talk about game content and mechanics in general and explain my own preferences as a player and the thought processes behind game development design decisions. But please, everyone, stop extrapolating this information into conclusions about F:NV. I'm sorry, but it is infuriating. I'm not designing this game according to my personal preferences as a player (which are actually pretty wide), nor does any specific design methodology automatically apply to the work we are doing on this project.

It's cool, bro. I just wish I had a wolfish grin icon.

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If New Vegas doesn't have a radio station something has gone horribly wrong as it was without a doubt the best thing Fallout 3 brought to the series. So here are some suggestions

 

Johnny Mercer- Personality

Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstorng - Stars Fell on Alabama

Spade Cooley - You Never Miss the Water till the Well Runs Dry

Roy Rogers - Don't Fence Me In

Ink Spots & Ella Fitzgerald - I'm Making Believe

Mills Brothers - Paper Doll

Johnny Mercer - Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive

Al Dexter - Pistol Packin' Mama

Ink Spots - Beginning to See the Light

Bing Crosby - Would You Like to Swing on a Star

Danny Kaye - Black Strap Molasses

Louis Armstrong - A Kiss to Build a Dream On

Teresa Brewer - Music, Music, Music

Andrews Sisters - In the Mood

 

Anyone else got any?

 

One thing, if there is a radio station I hope there aren't any boring instrumental tracks.

Edited by bhlaab
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If New Vegas doesn't have a radio station something has gone horribly wrong as it was without a doubt the best thing Fallout 3 brought to the series. So here are some suggestions

 

Johnny Mercer- Personality

Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstorng - Stars Fell on Alabama

Spade Cooley - You Never Miss the Water till the Well Runs Dry

Roy Rogers - Don't Fence Me In

Ink Spots & Ella Fitzgerald - I'm Making Believe

Mills Brothers - Paper Doll

Johnny Mercer - Ac-Cent-Tchu-Ate the Positive

Al Dexter - Pistol Packin' Mama

Ink Spots - Beginning to See the Light

Bing Crosby - Would You Like to Swing on a Star

Danny Kaye - Black Strap Molasses

Louis Armstrong - A Kiss to Build a Dream On

Teresa Brewer - Music, Music, Music

Andrews Sisters - In the Mood

 

Anyone else got any?

 

One thing, if there is a radio station I hope there aren't any boring instrumental tracks.

 

Except a radio station makes no sense in the post-nuclear wasteland.

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Along with everything else that doesn't make sense. The music in Fallout 3 was great. Even if it's not a conventional radio station, I want more tunes, man!

 

I think a radio station in the basin would be great, but outlying areas are going to be screwed by the mountains. Maybe music tapes interspersed with informational VO work? I dunno, but don't let the 'reality' take away good features. Fixing up your own car and driving circles around 'tribals' riding around on bramin is no less immersion breaking.

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Almost nothing in FO3 made sense. It was all just there.

 

Regardless, Three DOg and GNR was the best and most intersting aspect of the entire game for me.

Notice how I can belittle your beliefs without calling you names. It's a useful skill to have particularly where you aren't allowed to call people names. It's a mistake to get too drawn in/worked up. I mean it's not life or death, it's just two guys posting their thoughts on a message board. If it were personal or face to face all the usual restraints would be in place, and we would never have reached this place in the first place. Try to remember that.
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Except a radio station makes no sense in the post-nuclear wasteland.

 

Why doesn't it? They have radio towers and computers and the ability to play holodiscs. Makes about as much sense as large underground vaults operating for 200+ years

 

And for full disclosure: I partially brought this up for suggestions of fitting oldies music to add to my Fallout 3 custom radio station so come on with the suggestions people >:^(

Edited by bhlaab
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funny, I hated three dog and the radio. it took me right out of the setting, post-apocolyptic fiction to me is usually very isolating and quiet and dangerous, and listening to three dog howling like a retard didn't really work for me.

 

On the other hand, I DID like walking into peoples homes and hearing the radio static and switching it off and having silence. it was a very eerie feeling and one that i enjoyed quite a bit. So I guess you could say I hated having a radio on my pipboy (i just pretended it wasn't there) but I liked the radios sprinkled around the wasteland/inside homes.

 

three dog was just plain obnoxious, same as the dj in six string samurai on which 3dog was based. It made more sense in the movie though because it was sort of a wierd rocknroll samurai PA mashup - not fallout (though fallout is certainly a mashup its really more pulp sci fi meets western PA with some retro aesthetics than samurai rockabilly)


Killing is kind of like playin' a basketball game. I am there. and the other player is there. and it's just the two of us. and I put the other player's body in my van. and I am the winner. - Nice Pete.

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funny, I hated three dog and the radio. it took me right out of the setting, post-apocolyptic fiction to me is usually very isolating and quiet and dangerous, and listening to three dog howling like a retard didn't really work for me.

 

On the other hand, I DID like walking into peoples homes and hearing the radio static and switching it off and having silence. it was a very eerie feeling and one that i enjoyed quite a bit. So I guess you could say I hated having a radio on my pipboy (i just pretended it wasn't there) but I liked the radios sprinkled around the wasteland/inside homes.

 

three dog was just plain obnoxious, same as the dj in six string samurai on which 3dog was based. It made more sense in the movie though because it was sort of a wierd rocknroll samurai PA mashup - not fallout (though fallout is certainly a mashup its really more pulp sci fi meets western PA with some retro aesthetics than samurai rockabilly)

 

Three dog is annoying, but also lead to one of the more inspired moments in the game-- where you can kill him. Then if you tune in it's some intern lady giving very very brief segues to the music.

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funny, I hated three dog and the radio. it took me right out of the setting, post-apocolyptic fiction to me is usually very isolating and quiet and dangerous, and listening to three dog howling like a retard didn't really work for me.

 

 

I hear what you are saying and I agree with you. The problem is that SO MANY aspects of FO3 were neither internally consistent or cohesive, that it didn't matter if GNR took me out of the setting because I already was.

 

FO3 was a lark. Just run around and shoot things and find stuff. In that sense it was fun enough.

Notice how I can belittle your beliefs without calling you names. It's a useful skill to have particularly where you aren't allowed to call people names. It's a mistake to get too drawn in/worked up. I mean it's not life or death, it's just two guys posting their thoughts on a message board. If it were personal or face to face all the usual restraints would be in place, and we would never have reached this place in the first place. Try to remember that.
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