Title: Fallout Shelter
Developer: Bethesda Game Studios
Platforms: iOS; Android
Release Dates: June 14, 2015 (iOS); August 13, 2015 (Android)
Players: Single player
ESRB Rating: N/A
Kid Friendly Rating: 12+Violence in the form of raider and monster attacks. Fights involve swords and guns but blood and gore is minimal. Vault dwellers sometimes move out of view to get “friendly” with each other and return pregnant. In-game purchases.
Personal Rating: 3.5/5
You have been appointed Overseer of your own vault. Rescue dwellers from the wasteland and put them to work generating resources in return for their protection. Equip your dwellers with the skill and weapons necessary to fend off mole rat, raider, and Death Claw attacks.
This game is surprising in its depth for what is, essentially, a clever marketing tool for Bethesda’s upcoming Fallout 4. Each dweller has his/her own skill attributes across seven categories. These skills determine how effective the dweller will be in a particular room. For example, dwellers with high S (strength) attributes perform well in power generating rooms. You can create rooms to generate resources, as well as to level up a dweller’s skill categories. Unrelated male and female dwellers assigned to living quarters will sometimes create babies, who grow up to become adult vault dwellers. You can also send your dwellers out into the wasteland to gather gear, weapons, and caps (cash), but make sure they are well-equipped, or they may not survive for long.
The game is addictive, especially early on, as you attempt to scrape your way toward a happy vault. As your vault becomes bigger, resources become easier to maintain, but occasionally more difficult foes come along to keep you on your toes.
It’s not the most heart-pounding game in the world, but for a casual gamer who enjoyed Fallout 3, and other simulation games like Sim City or Rollercoaster Tycoon, this is a good bet.