Five voices on an audio log
'Are we really gonna do this? It's open. We could just leave.'
'I couldn't. Not after that.'As you're wandering through the wasteland, you come across an old vault, a nuclear shelter to protect small colonies of people in isolation whilst the war to end all wars rages itself out. Vault 11. The door is open and inside the entrance are four corpses, a gun and an audio log. What happened here? You could walk back out the door and never know. Or you could go further in...
'A shining example. That's what it called us.'Vault 11 is one of the most perfect examples of environmental storytelling and videogame narrative. It deserves to be looked at and praised as a beacon of creative imagination. A short story in videogame form. There is one questline that would have you explore the vault, but otherwise it's a piece by itself, to be enjoyed entirely in it's own context. As you explore the vault you begin to notice these curious election posters pasted all over the walls. 'I hate Nate' 'Don't Vote Glover, His Family Needs Him' There are no NPCs, no conversations and only a scattering of audio logs. But through the rooms and the last remnants of the vault's survivors, you piece together a story of a women with incredible courage, intelligence and heroism. And a grim warning about power, mob mentality and the dangers of tradition. Treachery, control, politics.
'Anybody would've done what we did'
'You ask me, that's exactly the problem.'The worst and best thing is, it's entirely believable from the starting outburst to the final tragedy. People are good, but if they're left unchecked and conditions are just so, the status quo can betray them into doing things they'd never dreamed of. The creation of their situation was the one point of fantasy, but that comes from the dark humour and mythos of Fallout.
'Wait. Wait. People should know what happened. They could learn from it.'Play the game, explore the vault and when you've completed it, walk back to the entrance and listen to that audio log again
'If there's anyone out there at all, I hope they never have to find out. Ready, Harry?'
Four gunshots. A sigh. A sound of a pistol dropping to the floor.