It’s no secret that both Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas were less than impressive in terms of story. Sure, both had some truly entertaining and diverting side stories, but both lacked creativity and depth. Bethesda’s first attempt at a Fallout game was certainly very fun, but the story was ripped right out of Fallout 2. The only real difference was the name of the bad guy. Fallout: New Vegas, on the other hand, was an original story (even though Interplay had already written parts of it for their failed Fallout 3 game), but let’s face it, it was flat and uninvolved.
The point is, there are a lot of places out in the world that haven’t gotten the “post apocalyptic” treatment that I’d like to see them get, and there’s almost no end to the ways the overall world recovery story lines can be explored from the viewpoint of any number of important factions from the Fallout series games.
So without further slackjawed rambling, I bring you number 8……
It really is the most obvious item on the list, isn’t it? A Fallout game based in the world’s largest city just had to happen, eventually. But there’s more opportunity in Tokyo than just the city itself. No, there’s opportunity to completely rock the Fallout narrative and explore a completely different perspective on the game.
First, I’d like to take a moment of your time (and the time of the students in my class who are just staring at me as I type) to talk about the opportunities for stories in Tokyo. For the unfortunate gamers of the world who never finished Fallout 2, the game ends with the main character pretty much stealing a ship which is fully functional and capable of traversing the ocean in order to …….well……spoilers. So, let’s just say you just steal it for shits and giggles. The end cinematic tells you that everyone lives happily ever after, but never really addresses what happens to the ship. For all we know, the Brotherhood of Steel could have commandeered the thing and taken it for a joyride across the world, landing in any number of cities, and opening the door for familiar characters and plot elements in a totally new environment.
And even if the Brotherhood of Steel going round the world in 50 days doesn’t suit you, Tokyo itself would be a powerhouse of a place in which to set a Fallout game completely removed from all other Fallout stories. Tokyo itself is probably the most impressive city anyone can ever lay eyes on. It has everything that would make video game exploration fun, skyscrapers, mountain regions, farm land, rivers, bays, subways, highways, and a hundred parts of the city that put the downtown of your home city to shame. It is, in short, an open canvas on which a developer could draw literally any story that came to mind.
But what really sells the idea of Tokyo to me is the Japanese culture. There are two things about Tokyo that people who haven’t lived there probably don’t know. A) If it can be imagined, it is at least one Tokyo resident’s total obsession B) People who live in Tokyo may be technologically modern, but many still adhere to traditional codes of behavior. One might seem outlandish and silly in Southern California would be totally understandable in post apocalyptic Tokyo, which already has gangs of strangely dressed crazies (see bagelheads, Japanese Nazis, Harajuku and well….anything) roaming the street.
Finally, in all the world, Tokyo seems like the one place that might be able to save technology on a major scale. The people of Japan put massive importance on technology in general, and it permeates every single aspect of the culture, right down to the streets. You could even call it the city’s one true love. With so much technology focused in such a small area (relatively), some would surely survive. It would be nothing short of awesome to play through a wasteland that had to struggle for water and food, but still had underwear vending machines and 8 story arcades.