During my ongoing literature review I often discover interesting facts about things I’ve never thought about. Sometimes I can connect these facts with my own observations: The result is mostly a completely new idea why things are as they are. Maybe these ideas are new to you, too. Therefore I’ll share my new science based knowledge with you!
This week: This time, I think about Fallout Shelter, the first mobile game that really caught my interest.
So far, I neglected mobile games as they often seemed not advanced enough to really provide me with some challenging gameplay. Mobile games are video games that are specifically designed to be played on smartphones or tablets. In contrast to desktop computer games, mobile games are designed to be played for a few minutes only. For instance, most players enjoy mobile games while waiting for a particular event, such as the arrival of a friend or the end of a bus ride, or to have a quick break at work.
Thus, the gameplay of mobile games is designed to require only simple and quick interactions. The interactions can be executed by merely touching a mobile device’s display or turning the entire device to trigger some readings of other sensors. Also, the gamplay allows for an interruption at any time to avoid frustration when the player has to stop the gameplay.
While mobile games still can be very entertaining and immerse players in the resulting gameplay due to flow-inducing properties, they never have been of interest to me as I enjoy challinging computer games that require advance problem-analyses and decision-making. Additionally, I enjoy simulation or first-person computer games that require additional input techniques that can not be achieved with a smartphone’s interactive display.
However, during a recent car ride back home, I watched a friend playing an interesting mobile game that quickly gained my attention: Fallout Shelter. The goal of the game is to construct an underground shelter that protects inhabitants from the radiation of a post nuclear war wasteland. For this purpose, the player can build new facilities, assign inhabitants to work there, complete quests and gather resources that are needed by the inhabitants. The really interesting part about the game is that the inhabitants have skills affecting their performance, can gain experience points and reach new levels making them stronger, and can equip special item that even further affect their performance. In this way, Fallout Shelter challenges players with some limited micromanagement that I personally enjoy when playing complex strategy games on my regular gaming machine.
In conclusion, although this game still shows the usual limitations of a mobile game, i.e., being designed to be played for only a few minutes at a time, it is the first mobile game that really interests me and changed a bit my attitude towards this special video game type. Hopefully, mobile games will continue to increase in complexity to allow for some advanced decision making as achieved by games like XCOM 2 or RimWorld.