In a new interview, Fallout 3 DLC Lead Designer Jeff Gardiner talks about what players can expect from the game's upcoming new content and how the team has integrated it into the game.
In Operation: Anchorage, the first of three new add-ons coming for Fallout 3, players will take part in a simulation of the liberation of Anchorage, Alaska, from the Chinese Red Army. The mission will take place in a simulator much like the one encountered in the game's main quest, placing the player in an entirely new environment without actually leaving the Capital Wasteland. And, like that first simulator, players will lose their equipment and have to survive within the boundaries set by the simulation's designers.
"The Chinese Red army is everywhere, and the player will first have to secure the surrounding mountain side and then fight their way into the Chinese base," Gardiner told IGN. "The player will have to use a lot of their standard combat skills, along with several new tools that will only be available in the downloadable content. These include interactive Strike Teams under the player's command and unique armor, weapons, and other exotic gadgets."
The add-on will focus mainly on combat and stealth, he said, adding that the team is using DLC as a way to "try new things" and insert cool content that they simply didn't have time for in the original game. Even so, he stated that Bethesda is remaining true to the series' gameplay, saying, "We're trying something a little different with all of our upcoming content so there will be plenty of the morally gray, multiple path quest lines everyone loves the franchise for."
Operation: Anchorage will be available through a new quest objective and map marker that will be accessible at any point in the game, and is estimated at four to five hours in length. New weapons, armor and achievements will be included, as well as a new perk, "Covert Ops," while "animation vignettes" will "make the soldiers and other NPCs interact with the world in better, more convincing ways then anything we were able to do with the Fallout 3 main game."
Gardiner also briefly touched on the other two DLC releases, The Pitt, set in a heavily-irradiated Pittsburgh, and Broken Steel, which will actually continue the main storyline, increase the level cap and add new enemies, perks and other material.
Operation: Anchorage is coming in January 2009 for the Xbox 360 and PC (sorry, PlayStation 3 fans) for 800 MS points, with the other add-ons following in February and March. To learn more, have a look at Bethesda's Fallout 3 website.