Hey, remember that gray little RPG Bethesda dropped on us last Halloween? The one with the wasteland, the super mutants, and the rusty locker full of GOTY awards? Well, I've reviewed it for PopMatters, and here's an excerpt:
How do we fairly assess an unquestionably excellent game that succeeds far more than it fails, even when those “failures” are largely related to execution? How many points do we deduct for quest bugs? How many do we credit for mastery of audiovisual aesthetics? Can we assign numerical value to a game’s emotional power and to the intensity and resonance of the experience it offers? When so few games reach these heights, how bothered should I be by the formulaic sameness of Fallout 3‘s interiors or the awkward compromise of its combat system?
Of course it's quite possible to assign a score to Fallout 3, and I did. The wisdom of doing so, however, remains an open question.
You can read the full review here. Thanks to Mike Schiller, my editor at PopMatters, for giving me the time I needed to finish and reflect on the game.