Thin-skinned reaction to an on-topic reply
Insult you? When did I do that? You're the one hurling profanities. For someone who is putting him/herself forward as an authority on all things Fallout, I'd assumed you were familiar with the phrase "glittering gems of hatred" as a calling card of hard-core Fallout fandom (c.f. http://www.nma-fallout.com/article.php?id=34542 ). You're clearly of this camp.
As for the rest of my comments: just because a something works as designed, it doesn't mean it isn't broken; the design itself may be broken. Just because something like dialog trees are a staple of the genre, it doesn't mean that they are, defacto, correct. Your comments of "choice and consequences" in gaming is an illusion. There are no consequences as long as you can restore to previous savepoints; I suppose it's possible that you're some kind of true-blue CPRG'er who's never restored to a previous save when you weren't happy with the outcome, but I'll assume you play computer games like 99.99% of the rest of humanity and use the save game feature for more than just allowing you to play a campaign over multiple sessions.
CRPG characters are cardboard cutouts. Having someone completely freeze me out because I asked what I thought was an innocent question or a well-intentioned jibe does not map with my real-world experiences. If I piss someone off in real life, I'll be given a chance to make amends or apologize, but in CRPGs it's a door that slams shut.
I find exploring dialog trees boring. If I want to read a book, I'll read a book. I play games for interactivity, and choosing someone else's idea of what I want to say is not fun for me, and suffering the "consequences" of being made to parrot someone else's words.
Sure, I wish that the interaction model in F3 was more sophisticated, and I understand that some people like the idea of being able to replay a CRPG multiple times with different dialogue choices to see how things turn out, but F3 is too long for that. It looks like it's going to be taking me 80 hours at least to finish it; when I'm done I want to move onto something else. A shorter game (like the original) could afford to have more branches and dead-ends - replay was a real possibility. Remember, we're old gamers here - I don't have hundreds of hours to devote to playing games anymore.
As for bugs - you have a point there. The original games were mirror-bright in their perfection, completely lacking any sort of bug that prevented you from finishing the main quest or becoming rich by selling goods to vendors for more money than you just paid for them.
I started 'PC' gaming on an Atari 800. It's been a long road...I can't play Sins of a Solar Empire on a console even now. Having said that, I am primarily a console gamer today for these reasons:
1. It cheaper...I'm not upgrading all the time to play the latest PC game.
2. It's easier...my printer driver will never crash or lock up the game.
3. Many really great games are now console-only.
The game developers are flocking to consoles because:
1. Piracy is minimal compared to the PC.
2. It's much cheaper and much faster to write code for consoles, especially the Xbox.
3. There is a lot more profit.
The games I play on the PC are strategy and RTS games. Shooters and RPGs are on the console. If there are great games out for the PC, then I will play them if I don't have to drop a wad on upgrades. I do agree that many PC developed games are simplified and even 'dumbed down' in order to run on a console. I also believe that the average IQ of PC gamers is higher than console gamers, but that cannot be supported by any scientific studies. It doesn't matter anyhow. I play the GAMES and not the platform. Give me a great game and I will play it on anything I can. That's the point of it all---GIVE ME THE REALLY GREAT GAMES!
It's not that we don't think other games are rubbish, its that we haven't had any games like the ones we used to enjoy for years. Coupled with that we get alot of new games that claim to be like the ones we used to like... and are not, they lie, they pretend to be what we used to like but are in fact not it at all.
I emphasize, I really do. But it's simply a matter of economics. To a developer, resources spent creating content that the gamer never sees are resources that could have been applied to another title. You have to pay people's salaries, and for a huge, A-List title like F3, they need to make sure that the effort they spend ends up hitting they eyeballs of their customers or they're going to end up closing shop.
It's a huge problem, IMO, if you're someone who wants to see many branching outcomes (with custom-created content) in a big blockbuster game. It's not going to happen, which is why I mentioned stuff like Dwarf Fortress (even though the content there is mostly generated, the idea is the same). Consumers with "taste" in any medium learn to accept that the mainstream stuff (and F3 is mainstream, like it or not) is not going to cater to their refined palates, and it's stupid to rail against them because of it.
F3 has been stripped of it's "Pick Your Path to Adventure" elements; so be it. If that's the kind of stuff that really turns your crank, there are still outlets for it ( http://ifcomp.org/ ), but you're going to have to accept that it won't be displayed in glorious technicolor with HDR lighting and expensive voice actors.
For me its not a question of adapting its a question of lowering my standards and then pay two or three times as much for a oft not lousy product.
Gaming is teething on its "teen's" or a better saying its going through puberty shallowness over substance, and with the cost of development and the high cost of retail compared to the film indutry I wonder for how long can this "kid" called the game industry stay in cocaine and shallow relations until it burns out....
The phrase "glittering gems of hatred" was used to insult the Fallout fanbase by a goon. I don't like being insulted. It's like someone calling a black guy a "nigger" and then getting all pissed off at him being insulted because other black people use the word "nigger" between themselves.
If you load from a previous save, you have not made the choice you just made, thus you won't suffer from the consequences because you haven't made the choice. If you make the choice then continue on and there's no consequences, then it's a meaningless choice.
The character's Jeannette and Therese Voerman aren't cardboard cutouts, Prince Lacroix isn't a cardboard cutout, Baron Isaac isn't a cardboard cutout. They aren't cardboard cutouts because they've got well portrayed personality, their voice actors and animations bring them to life.
I'd rather have 5 hours of incredible gameplay with a well written story, well written characters and believable world than 80 hours of boring, badly acted dialogue, shoddy game design and stupid world.
You're judging a 2008 game to a 1997 game. They both have bugs. Fallout 1 and 2 have a shitload of them. Fallout 3 has a shitload of them. That something was done a bad way in the past does NOT excuse it from being the same way now.
Hm. And here I just wanted to sign up for the "Crotchety old gamer" camp, having Xyphus and DungBeetles (weeeee GOTCHA!) on the Apple II as some of my formative gaming memories, but I seemed to have stumbled into a flame war.
Oh, and if we're discussing gaming franchises to resurrect, will somebody please bring back Syndicate/Syndicate Wars?