A lot of games make a big deal out of player choice, but few in recent memory offer so many intricate, meaningful ways of approaching any given situation. You fulfill or dash the spiritual hopes of an idyllic society, side with slavers or their slaves, and decide the fate of more than one city over the course of your postapocalyptic journey through the Washington, DC wasteland. Your actions have far-reaching consequences that affect not just the world around you but also the way you play, and it's this freedom that makes Fallout 3 worth playing--and replaying. It's deep and mesmerizing, and though not as staggeringly broad as the developer's previous games, it's more focused and vividly realized.
* Freedom to explore what you want, when you want
* Fantastic, intricate quests can be completed in a variety of satisfying ways
* VATS combat system results in all sorts of tense and gruesome encounters
* Outstanding art design makes for a desolate DC
* Rewarding mixture of excitement and atmospheric exploration.
* The story and characters can feel a bit sterile
* Combat feels mildly clunky.