Thursday, February 12, 2009
My review of the Fallout 3 expansion, Operation Anchorage, is up at thephoenix.com. The short version: It probably would have been really neat as an included quest in the original game, but it's not good on its own and not worth the money. One way to look at it is that Fallout 3 cost $60, and I got 50 hours of gameplay out of it, while Operation Anchorage cost $10 and I got 2 hours of gameplay out of it. I don't expect or demand a game to meet an ideal cost-to-playtime ratio, but that seems out of whack.
The worst part is something that was too convoluted to explain fully in the review. I think it'll only make sense if you've already beaten Fallout 3. My last manual save, with my level 20 character, was in Vault 87, or past the point of no return in the main storyline. I didn't think I could backtrack from there and take care of the Operation Anchorage quest. Instead, I loaded up my last save before that one, which was about 10 hours earlier. No real problem there, except that playing the expansion also overwrote my lone auto-save, which had been at the end of the game. If I ever want to experiment with the different choices the ending sequences offers, I'll have to re-play a bunch of stuff that won't be any different.
Not that I ever planned to do that. But still. It's the principle of the thing.
Like I said, if you're still on your first playthrough, or even starting a second or third playthrough, this expansion probably would be worth it, if just for the Winterized T-51b Power Armor. But since I'd already wrung everything I could out of the retail version, Operation Anchorage did not scratch my itch.