Name: Fallout 3: The Pitt
Genre: Action RPG
Platform: Xbox 360, PC (Reviewed on 360)
The Pitt is the second installment of Bethesda’s downloadable content for the 2008 action RPG, Fallout 3. The Pitt is a return to form after the radically different Operation Anchorage, and strangely enough, it felt good to be back in the Wastes. For a guy who doesn’t really ever finish games, I’ve sure played the hell out of every inch of Fallout 3. After playing through this latest batch of DLC, I think it’s safe to assume that I’m buying whatever Bethesda’s selling.
Like the previous downloadable expansion, The Pitt begins when you receive a distress signal on your Pip-Boy 3000. A man named Werhner is seeking assistance retrieving a cure for mutations that the Raider’s in the Pitt have developed. Located in one of the northernmost spots on the map, the entrance to the Pitt is an old train station where slavers have holed up. You can either sneak in with your Chinese Stealth Armor should you still have it from completing Operation Anchorage, or by killing a roaming slaver, and stealing their clothes. I snuck in, and subsequently killed everyone, because that’s how I roll. Once you make it in, Werhner is waiting for you by a Kalamazoo, or hand-cart for the layman, to make the trip to the Pitt. When you arrive, you’ll be stripped of everything you’ve got on you, and thrown into the Downtown slavery district of the area. From there, you’ll be forced to earn your freedom into the uptown area of Haven. Then it’s all up to you how you want things to proceed. You can choose to side with Werhner, and liberate the cure from the Raiders, or defect to Ashur’s Raiders, and help maintain the staus quo of the Pitt.
There are three main quests and two side quests in The Pitt. Since one of the quests is just making it to the Pitt, which consists of fast-traveling to the MDPL-21 Powerstation, and heading north until you run into Werhner, the actual story content of this expansion is pretty minimal. So minimal in fact that you can complete this expansion in just about two hours, including doing the extra running around for the side quests. I don’t know if it’s unfair to expect Bethesda to create an entirely new city for me to run around in, but that’s certainly what I thought was going to happen when I won my freedom. Instead, I was allowed entry into a small city block consisting of three buildings to explore. The slave area consisted of a few alleys and a steel mill, and the subsequent scrap yard. While the scrap yard isn’t small, it isn’t very large either. I spent quite a bit of time in the scrap yard completing one of the side quests where I had to find steel ingots that I could exchange for some decent gear, and after thinking about it, I’m pretty sure the explorable area of the Pitt is no bigger than Old Olney and Vault 92 combined. Much of the city is closed off, and while what little there is to explore is really well done, I wish there was more of a reason to stick around instead of heading right back into the Wastes.
The moral dilemma that the content wants players to deal with came completely out of left field, and actually made me question which path I wanted to take. Either way, you’re still able to get all of the goods in the DLC, as there’s no wrong choice. There are subtleties to the story here that you only learn by talking to the various characters multiple times, and it was nice to get back to that type of content after the last batch of DLC. What makes the world of Fallout 3 so interesting is the different stories that all the inhabitants share with the player. The story of the Pitt, and how it came to be the way it is, looks to be setting up even more intriguing things for the next installment of content, Broken Steel.
While The Pitt may be a tad on the short side, there’s certainly enough content here to warrant the price. Some of the new weaponry and armor is pretty cool, and even though you won’t have a lot to do in the Pitt, it’s definitely worth a trip. After some of the events in this content, I’m curious to see what happens with Broken Steel, and whether or not the seeds planted here will come to fruition. That, and the fact that I can finally start earning more experience.