GameTap: Obviously, the Fallout series has its share of fans that are expecting a certain look and gameplay mechanics out of Fallout 3, but how do you take that into account while making the game accessible to someone that has never even heard of the series before?
Emil Pagliarulo: As for look, Fallout has some amazing art direction, thanks to our lead artist, Istvan Pely. The game has that classic Fallout vibe--it’s postapocalyptic, yet mixed with the remnants of pseudo-1950s sci world.
For the player--and for right now, that player is me, testing the game--it’s just an incredibly visually interesting world to explore. You know, you’re walking down an abandoned street...you pass through a blown-out wall of one building, climb up some rubble to get onto a low roof...and then, in the distance, you see the destroyed Washington Monument. It’s pretty surreal. I don’t think any player is going to have trouble “getting” or appreciating the setting, not by a long shot.
Now, as far as mechanics are concerned, Fallout 3 definitely is a lot different than the previous games. In that regard, it’s much more accessible. It’s first- and third-person, and it will be pretty easy to pick up and play, whether on the console or the PC. This, in my opinion, is one of the best things about the game. I mean, if you’ve played a game in the last 10 years, playing Fallout 3 will be second nature. (...)
GameTap: I never played the game all the way through this way, but I will admit that in Fallout 2, I mucked with my character's stats and did a good few hours with a character of intelligence of 2 or something, and it was interesting seeing the reactions to my character’s mental deficiencies--I couldn't even speak, I just grunted. I’ve heard that in Fallout 3 intelligence doesn’t affect dialogue, that it’s almost all in speech or charisma. Is there a specific reason? Why can’t I wander around as some sort of nuclear cro-magnon?
Emil Pagliarulo: It really all comes down to the best way to balance our resources and our time, and concentrate on the things that really matter. Throughout the game, the player has so many choices, so many ways to define their character, we don’t want to get hung up on something like that.