Fallout cover art


Fallout is a famous post-apocalyptic RPG game series. The first part of this series was released in 1997. This first game is today not as well-known as the later games, so let me tell you something about its development, story, and other interesting things.

Fallout was originally intended to be a sequel to Wasteland. Although Wasteland was created by Interplay and they wanted to continue the series, they did not get the rights from the publishing company. Fallout is therefore similar to the game Wasteland and easter eggs from the game refer to it. In 1994, Tim Cain began programming the game. He wanted to use a license that Interplay already owned. He originally wanted to do a fantasy RPG, but the Interplay bosses stopped him because at the time, fantasy was one of their most popular genres and they didn't want his game to parasite on it. So, he had to choose between these three game base systems: “Vampire: The Masquerade”, “Shadowrun” or “GURPS”. He chose GURPS, which is a set of rules created by Steve Jackson Games and applicable to any topic. But in the end, Fallout didn't use the GURPS system. Steve Jackson Games ended their collaboration with Interplay after seeing how violent the game is and especially its intro.

The violence in the intro - Soldier shot civilian in TV and then waved to the camera

This meant for the development team to find a new game mechanism that they could use. And so, Chris Taylor came out with the SPECIAL character system. Originally, this system was called ACELIPS, but then by switching letters, SPECIAL was created. SPECIAL stands for Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility and Luck, it determines the mechanics of the characters in the game.

Demonstration of the SPECIAL system when choosing a character

Scott Campbell, the game's screenwriter, defined the main principles of the game. Every task must have more ways to solve it, no unnecessary skills, no slapstick humor, every action has a reaction. Side Quests were created so that they had to be completed to complete the game. However, the players found a way to finish Fallout in five minutes. The speedrunners use Fallout glitches to get in locations normal players can’t go. There is an open world in the game in which more can be done than the developers expected. Non-player characters have a daily routine and even treat the player according to the time of day. For example, if you go to a merchant at night, he won’t trade with you. In addition, NPCs use the A * algorithm, which helps them find paths to their goal destinations. The idea of turn-based combat was taken from the game UFO: Enemy Unknown (X-COM: UFO Defense). Originally, Fallout was supposed to run on a 3D engine, but eventually the developers approached a rhombic 2D view using cavalier axonometry. The partners who accompany the main character on their journey were added to the game only a few months before the end of the development, one of the helpers came up with this idea. You may think that specific developers have been assigned to develop Fallout. In fact, it was different, Tim Cain went to Interplay's offices and said a few words here and there about the game he was preparing. In this way, he got people from various other projects to help him, which was a great displeasure with the management.

The story of Fallout is quite simple and perhaps easy to remember. The countries of the world are collapsing in the financial crisis. Technological progress has almost stopped, for example a transistor is not created, so everything uses vacuum tubes. On October 23, 2077, the nuclear war began. Within two hours, all the capitals of the world were destroyed. In America, only those who hid in anti-nuclear shelters survived. Anti-nuclear shields are called Vaults and each has a specific number. To get into such a Vault, one had to have a contract with Vault-Tec Corporation, which built the bunkers. Each Vault is a social experiment and tests the human personality. For example, in Vault 11, they must sacrifice one person each year for the others to survive. The main character of the game lives in Vault 13, where one day a chip that filters water breaks down. It is our main character who is embarked on the task of finding and bringing in a new chip.

Vault ad from Fallout intro

At the end of the article, I would like to add a few interesting facts from the game. The origin of Vault Boy, an iconic character from Fallout, is interesting. It was created as an assignment for graphic designers to make a character similar to Rich Uncle Pennybags from Monopoly. Vault boy has his thumb up because it measures a sufficient distance from the atomic mushroom. The game also contains many easter eggs. In the game, for example, you can meet the TARDIS. To get a dog as a partner, you have to put on Mad Max's jacket, which means that the dog also belongs to Mad Max. Or, for example, you will be attacked by guards in Hub, and one will tell you: "Have you ever danced with the devil in the pale moonlight?", Which is a quote from the movie Batman.

The first appearance of Vault boy in the intro of Fallout

Fallout has really become a popular game. A number of sequels have been released, which still have a lot in common with the first part. If you would like to play Fallout, don't forget to save your current position, because the game really crashes if you don't have the right patches installed and sometimes, they don't help either.