Arlington Adventure (Fallout 3 mod) review…

Arlington Adventure (Fallout 3 mod) review after the break…

Arlington Adventure (Fallout 3 mod) review…

Learning a second language is always a daunting proposition. If it is an international language (like Ido, Esperanto, etc.), then it might take upwards of a year before you can create truly fluent and intricate sentences. If it is a natural language (like English, Chinese, Russian, etc.), then, as they say, “the learning never ends.” Native languages are significantly tougher to become fluent in because of all of the irregular vocabulary and rules that the language in question has absorbed throughout the generations.

“Arlington Adventure” is a Fallout 3 mod written by “Spalny_Vagon.” It is evident even before playing the mod that Spalny’s first language wasn’t English even though the mod is written in that language. The language translation is rough, somewhere between the fictional character “Borat” and “All Your Base Belong To Us.” Be prepared to read between lines for as long as you can.

The mod’s premise itself is fairly interesting. You talk to a Brotherhood of Steel scribe in Arlington Library. There, you learn that an Initiate (a “rookie” in BoS slang) has gone missing while investigating the possibility of a secret (they’re always secret, aren’t they?) Enclave base at Arlington cemetery (Arlington cemetary, Arlington library, Arlington Adventure… Get it? Get it?!) and since you’re so nice, why not investigate the possibility yourself?

The mod author clearly knows how to write a mod and this is never in doubt. Fairly sophisticated events occur within the mod, including a detailed “interrogation” scene should you accidentally decide to use your wits while interacting with a particular character.

Like with a certain percentage of mods, this mod tries to be a “hard” adventure, meaning that you can’t always rely upon a quest compass to guide you from one objective to the next. I have nothing against such types of adventures – They can be immensely rewarding but, at the same time, can also be immensely frustrating if not written clearly enough. For instance, at one point, the player encounters a locked door that can only be opened by finding a very small key in the hand of a skeleton some distance away from the door. Once you figure it out, the “solution” sort of makes sense but how many are going to invest all of that time to figure it out? Why not have a gentle reminder for when someone tries that door that says something like, “This door is locked. Perhaps the key is nearby…” See? You don’t need to make it a quest stage, you haven’t given the exact location away and now it draws the player’s attention to the immediate area.

I was able to power my way through the mod until I got past “Doctor Zelda” (hint: Play dumb) and needed to get a book for one of her patients. Having reached my level of frustration with the “hard” adventure style of game play coupled with the “I is much gooder at vault play” babel fish English translation, I decided to call it quits. It’s a shame that I had to stop playing the game because a better English translation might’ve inspired me to continue onwards.

Overall, the vault design was nice. Radroaches infest the abandoned part of the vault and the only significant lapse of design that I could see was a bathroom stall door that attached to nothing at all. Also, I could never get Jenkins to comment on much of anything even though, according to the “GECK” (construction kit for mods), he’s supposed to say a whole lot more.

Buried underneath some questionably-translated English and some frustrating game play is a serviceable enough mod. My advice, for what it’s worth, is to find someone willing to convert questionably-translated English to understandable English. Only then will this mod have the chance to be honestly judged on it’s game play merits.

3 Responses to “Arlington Adventure (Fallout 3 mod) review…”

  1. Spalny Vagon Says:

    Text translation was done by my daughter. Unfortunately, I don’t have familiar Englishmen who play Fallaut.

  2. Lutonaut Says:

    Thank you for reading my blog.

    Creating a mod in Fallout 3 is tough. Learning a second language is tough. Combining the two probably doesn’t make either one any easier. You should be commended for your accomplishments. Unfortunately, the English translation needs further work for it to be considered fluent English rather then just serviceable English. Having re-read my review, my opinion stands: The translation needs to be refined in order for a sufficient amount of people to properly play your mod as it was intended to be played. This recommendation should not take away from the accomplishment that you have achieved in having created a mod with sophisticated events, an accomplishment that not many people are capable of achieving even with practice. Thank you for creating your mod and making it available to be played from Fallout 3 Nexus.

  3. Spalny Vagon Says:

    I thank you for interest to my work.
    I have brought in the mod two hints after your review. (This door is locked. Perhaps the key is nearby … ”. Besides, now the player will know the reason of indecision of Jenkins when he sits on a sofa).
    I know three languages, but alas, among them there is no English.
    Mod has two endings. The long one has enough of hints, unfortunately all of them are buried by translation. As to a short ending. I haven’t understood, whether it was possible to you to find it. If no – that is pity. In my opinion, it is the most interesting moment in the mod. If you yet haven’t removed mod from system you could load the saved game and to choose “science” in dialogue with doctor Zelda. I am sure, you won’t regret. Once again thanks.

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