The Lone Wanderer has saved Alaska, saved Pittsburgh, woke from the dead and visited Point Lookout; all in a span of a few months.
Now, Fallout 3’s protagonist has one more frontier to conquer: Space!
Publisher: Bethesda Softworks
Developer: Bethesda Softworks
Aug. 3, 2009
Mothership Zeta, Fallout 3’s fifth and final Downloadable Content, takes the Lone Wanderer on a galactic adventure filled with Aliens, spaceships and, best of all, advanced weapons.‚ However, with many other DLCs to compete with, how will Bethesda’s most recent Fallout 3 add-on stack up against the competition?
Mothership Zeta opens like most other DLCs; with a mysterious radio signal that ultimately reveals a new location on your map.‚ The location, aptly named Alien Crash Site, is where a small round ship called Recon Craft Theta had crash-landed in the Wasteland.‚ Upon arriving at the location, the Lone Wanderer will notice that there is fairly heavy radiation surrounding the ship.‚ Eventually, when players approach the ship, the Lone Wander is beamed up to Mothership Zeta.
Once the Lone Wander teleports to Zeta, players find themselves trapped (and stripped of all armor and weapons) in a holding cell with a Waster named Somah.‚ Somah doesn’t know much more than you when it comes to general information about the ship, but she has learned that your Alien captors would prefer to keep their human specimens alive.‚ With this in mind, Somah suggests that you should fight her, making the Aliens have to open the cell and break up the scuffle.‚ Once you agree to the plan, it is executed perfectly and the escape begins.
One of my favorite parts about Mothership Zeta is the unique cast of characters you meet during your attempt to escape.‚ First, the Alien enemies on the spacecraft were very cool.‚ Each Alien looks similar to what we all imagine an extraterrestrial would look like: small, green and with a big head.‚ Still, even with this classic interpretation of extra-terrestrials, the natives of Mothership Zeta are quite interesting because of their beautifully animated armor and masterfully recorded voices.‚ These aspects alone were probably two of the best things about this DLC.
Also, the Aliens of Mothership Zeta seem to have been in the abducting business for quite a while, judging by the types of folks you encounter.‚ The Aliens cryogenically froze many different types of NPCs, good and bad.‚ Some of the frozen enemies that are frozen (and possibly unfrozen) include Slavers, Super Mutants and those ever-pesky Feral Ghouls.‚ The allies you meet on Mothership Zeta are from Earth’s present and past.‚ Characters such as a cowboy, a little girl who survived the Great War (and is very helpful throughout the DLC) and a medic from the liberation of Alaska.‚ My favorite NPC was a cryo-frozen Samurai, complete with ancient Japanese armor and weaponry.
Speaking of weapons, the Aliens on Mothership Zeta really know how develop some tools of destruction.‚ In addition to the massive device called the Death Ray (useable only at the end of the DLC), the fallen Aliens usually leave behind impressive loot.‚ Items such as the Shock Baton and Electro-Suppressor serve as viable weapons for melee characters.‚ The Alien Atomizer and Disintegrator are found often throughout the DLC and do considerable damage against your extra-terrestrial adversaries.‚ My favorite weapon in Mothership Zeta was the Drone Cannon.‚ This weapon, which is found on the Aliens’ security robots, fire large spheres of energy that bounce around and eventually explode.‚ This was especially helpful when I wanted to eliminate enemies who were hiding around corners and behind objects.
Sadly, the characters and the weapons were the only things I really liked about the Mothership Zeta DLC.
The great thing about Fallout 3 is the fact that it is driven by such an interesting storyline.‚ Unfortunately, Mothership Zeta fails to provide anything resembling an intriguing plot.‚ I found myself becoming bored with this DLC very quickly, not caring about whom I talked to or what information I uncovered.‚ Instead, I seemed to just be playing Mothership Zeta so I could get my character to level 30 and be done with it.‚ Though I was able to get to that pinnacle level, I still wasn’t happy with the story that got me there.
Similar to the plot, the quests in Mothership Zeta were quite bland.‚ Many of the tasks that the Lone Wanderer must complete tended to be tedious and uninteresting.‚ There was no real problem solving during the quests.‚ Instead, the Lone Wanderer is forced run from one location to another, having no say in the way he or she completes the task.‚ Fallout 3 is all about making the right or wrong choice.‚ However, for the developers of Mothership Zeta, it seems that this DLC is all about making *their* choice.
Not helping the entertainment value of the quests was the confusing nature of the spacecraft’s environments.‚ Though each room and hallway on Mothership Zeta looked clean and futuristic, I found it very easy to get lost while trying to find important points of interest.‚ The use of teleportation pads came in handy quite often, but they often made things much more confusing than they needed to be.‚ I applaud the effort by Bethesda, but they just didn’t do anything for me.
Blast Factor: Overall, Mothership Zeta was a real letdown for me.‚ Though the characters and advanced weaponry in this DLC were a pleasure to interact with, important aspects such as the plot, quests and environments were either flawed or just plain boring.‚ If $10 means little to you, Mothership Zeta may be worth purchasing if you have all of the other Fallout 3 DLCs and would like to reach level 30.‚ However, if you’re still lacking any of the previous DLCs, I suggest you invest in those first.
Mothership Zeta is currently available exclusively on Xbox Live and Games for Windows for 800 Points / $9.99.