Review: Fallout 4

I had the opportunity to take a closer look at the post apocalyptic open world RPG Fallout 4 and give it my thoughts on the game. With this review were going to go over the story, graphics, and replay ability of the game, as well as get opinions from other gamers who’ve experienced the game in some capacity.

The main story line of Fallout 4 is that the player is a father or mother, depending on character choice that has woken up in an underground vault that has kept the player cryogenically frozen for one hundred years. To the player’s surprise they find their spouse shot dead and their newborn son missing. At this point it’s the player’s goal to find who killed their spouse, as well as find their missing son.

I found this to be an interesting start for the open-world game. Right off the bat the creators try to rope the player in with their emotions in order to feel more inclined to continue with the story. If the player were to only do the main story it could take roughly 30 hours to complete. But there is far more to explore and discover and there are hundreds of side quests that the player can complete, which I highly suggest to get the full experience.

With a lot of games one of the first things gamers look at is the graphics. I was able to analyze and compare the graphics in Fallout 4 to other games.

It’s easy to tell from the first Fallout game to the current there are amazing improvements. Even from newer games like Fallout New Vegas there are tremendous improvements, from things like skin textures to player movement and even better A.I. movement. There’s always room for improvement in any game graphics-wise, but the developers did a fantastic job with the graphics even though the game is massive.

The biggest priority for game developers is being able to make a game that has high replay ability. If a player has a game that they can only play through once, gamers will lose interest fast and the developers start to lose profit.

I myself have played multiple games in Fallout 4. The thing I find that the developers of the Fallout series do a fantastic job at is the replay ability. They give players hundreds of side quests as mentioned before, which all of them can assist the player in beating the main quest. They sometimes also have their own little stories that can pull a gamer in making them more devoted to the game. With this gamers will want to try and complete all the side stories to find out the whole story Fallout has to offer.

It’s not always the story that people replay the game for either; sometimes it’s to find all the hiden secrets developers have left for gamers. Fallout always has hidden secrets or “Easter eggs” as gamers call it, weather its in reference to other games they have made or something from pop culture. No matter what it is, its fun and exciting to go back through and find these hidden gems that the player might have missed in a previous play through.

I had the pleasure of talking to some fellow gamers online and get their opinion on the game. The first one I talked to went by the name of Extra IQ and he stated “I don’t consider myself as a mega Fallout 4 fan but what I can say is that I had a fun time playing through the story, and I plan on buying the next game in the Fallout series if one were to come out.” Dankaudib8 was the next gamer I met online he expressed, “I absolutely love this game! I haven’t played the previous games so I was surprised on how much I enjoyed the game.”

From all the information I have gathered, as well as my own personal opinion it’s safe to say Fallout 4 is a fantastic game and I would highly recommend it to any gamer. If I had to give an exact score on the game I would give it an 8.5/10.

Fallout 4 Workshop

Review: Fortnite Battle Royale

 

Fortnite Battle Royale is a third-person shooter game.

Becoming Viral

Fortnite: Battle Royale has been able to high-step its way through the crowd of average video games and become something truly great. The game has a standard setup, where up to 100 players are dropped on a large (but shrinking) map with the goal of being the last person alive. Although the game was only recently released in September 2017, the developer reported Fortnite having roughly 3.4 million players. Fortnite has become a viral sensation, with famous rapper Drake and Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster being current players.

A Game for Everyone

Part of what makes Fortnite great is that it’s suited for all ages. Unlike most Battle Royale games, Fortnite doesn’t have any blood or gore. Everything about the game has a funny and lighthearted tone. Players start out the game by jumping from a party bus that is held up by massive balloons. Even all the cities on the map use alliteration; such as Tomato Town, Flush Factory, Snobby Shores and Lonely Lodge. Fortnite has incorporated the ability for players to dance and send funny gestures to their opponents as well. Players can also find loot inside piñatas called supply llamas. Even when an enemy is killed, they don’t really die. Instead, they’re teleported away after losing.

Hard Hat Suggested

Fortnite’s simple building system has also been able to help set it apart from other games in this genre. Players must scavenge the map for materials (wood, stone, metal) before they can do any type of construction. Each material has unique properties in strength and the time required to build. Although the set-up is basic, Fortnite’s building system gives players endless options to creatively build. Some options include building ramps down the side of a mountain so the player doesn’t die from the fall or building a floor to run across Loot Lake. One of the most popular option among players is to build makeshift bunkers or bases when under attack. In general, the building system gives players the ability to improvise and adapt to their situation in the game.

Game Style

With no two Fortnite games being the same, it can be difficult to get bored. The style of play is dependent on what weapons you scavenge. Players might second guess shooting at an enemy if the only weapon they have is a pistol. Epic Games has created an arsenal for players to choose from, with options ranging from a simple pistol to a destructive rocket launcher. Weapons are also color-coded to show their level of strength and uniqueness. Another aspect that makes Fortnite stand apart from their competition is the addition of traps and explosives to gameplay. The combination of weapons and traps makes players have a strategic plan on how they’re going to play offense and defense. Through multiple updates, Fortnite has added additional items including Cozy Campfire, Slurp Juice, and Launch Pad. Although Fortnite seems as simple as a game of checkers, it’s more like a strategic game of chess.

Although only having one life per game makes enemy confrontation risky, most matches still have a quick game pace. As players die a “storm” moves to the center, causing the map to get smaller and smaller. This eliminates the possibility of running around the whole map trying to find the last enemy. Players also have the option to drop at more populated area, such as Titled Towers, if players want a more action-packed game. If players prefer to loot for resources first, they’re also able to drop at unpopulated areas along the map.

Customization

Fortnite has also added more player personalization than most games in this genre. They’re able to earn (through tasks/goals) or buy “skins” to customize their player. The game offers seasonal outfits, such as an Easter Bunny costume, if players chose. Other options include making a player’s pickaxe look like a children’s toy. Overall, Fortnite is a strategic, player-focused game.

Troublesome Tender Tuesday

Chicken tender Tuesday, what a day. After glancing at the menu options for that meal, people stampede to swipe into the Marketplace, eager to get their fair share of a full plate of chicken goodness. Timing is key on this day. If you are the unfortunate soul who happens to have a class that runs past 2:00 p.m., forget it, you’ll be too late. Yet, hopeful, you rush out of class, shove your ID at the person sitting to swipe you in, push past anyone in your way, RUN TO THE PLATTER… and gaze into the empty steal bin that once held the glorious fried sticks of meat.

I can’t relate to this sad sap. Chicken tender Tuesday gets a turned up nose and a face of disgust from me. See, I’m a vegetarian, a difficult position to be in on this day. I wish I was one of those folks who drooled over the excellent display of stacked tenders, but I can’t stand the texture of meat. Ever since I was young, I turned away from it and would be forced by my parents to “eat at least one bite.”

Here at college, the food doesn’t really suit my dietary desires. On this Tuesday, I find myself standing alone at the peanut butter and jelly bar, spreading my peanut butter over a wilted piece of wheat bread, yum. After tossing my pathetic sandwich on an orange plate, I head over to the soups, hopeful for something to add some flavor to my meal: chili and chicken noodle are the options, nothing I will enjoy. One glance at my sad little sandwich sitting all alone on my tray and I head to the salad bar, my only saving grace. Thankfully, things are looking up over here. I fill my bowl with fresh green spinach, crisp iceberg lettuce, an excessive amount of green peppers, and overfill the bowl with as many cucumbers as I can grab before the person behind me starts to judge.

The issues lies with my options available at each meal. I understand that my opinion, especially on this Tuesday, is the minority, but I can’t eat cucumbers and bread for every lunch. Glancing at the menu for the week, anyone can see the sheer amount of green highlighting, signifying the vegetarian options of the day. Looking closer, however, shows the lack of real meal options. For example, Wednesday lunch’s vegetarian options are steamed peas, broccoli and cauliflower, not much to fill up on.

The only positive about my lack of main dish vegetarian options are my developed relationships with Lori, who makes the omelets, and Bob, who works at the grill. I am a very active person and I need a lot of protein and iron to maintain my lifestyle. Peas and cauliflower aren’t going to cut it. So, almost every day I go to either Bob or Lori. From the grill, I get their black bean burgers. After making eye contact from across the room and a little nod of the head, Bob knows to start cooking up a patty of rice, beans, corn, and a little extra spice to make the flavor something to indulge in. If I shake my head no, that means I’m headed to see Lori. She knows my order too: regular eggs, spinach, green pepper, broccoli, feta cheese and salsa on the side. Thankfully, these options are available every day allowing me to get my full serving of protein.

Still, my options are always limited to a few select items. Etown is a small school. So I understand the Marketplace cannot hold or manage many more food options. But imagine, one day I walk in, and there is a whole new array of Italian, and Mexican, and Thai, and Chinese, and gourmet salads, and all the broccoli and cheddar soup I could ever have!!!… I wouldn’t be complaining. For now, I will sit quietly eating my peanut butter sandwich as my friends rave on about how excited they are it is tender Tuesday, in between shoveling chicken tenders into their mouth.

A chicken tender lover’s lunch.

Etown’s Got Talent Review

Elizabethtown College’s student senate class of 2020 presented the annual talent show at Leffler Chapel Friday, April 6. Students at Etown performed dancing and singing duos, beatboxing, juggling singing and instrumental pieces to benefit The Church World Services or CWS refugee center.

The night commenced with sophomore Emily Perry and Ethan Waugh co-hosts cracking jokes. They represented the student senate club by serving as co-hosts. Personally, I found the jokes unentertaining. I am biased because I do not find knock-knock jokes funny. I deem that this took away from the show because it was uncomfortable to watch and seemed disorganized. The co-hosts would pause awkwardly or move in front of each other, making it hard to hear what they were saying. Emily and Ethan have great stage presence, and I think they could have utilized this characteristic better in a different capacity.

“The most difficult part of hosting was trying to plan funny bits in between every act. Ethan and I went through over a dozen different ideas and even switched things we were going to do the night of the show, right before we went on,” Perry said.

The first act contained four performances. Juniors and roommates, Cheryl Errichetti and Sara Palatnik performed the song, “This is Me” from the Greatest Showman. The interpretive dancing by Errichetti was well done; her costume was gold with glitters, adding to the theme of the movie. I am biased because I love the movie; however, audience members seemed to like Palatnik’s singing and piano playing skills combined with Errichetti’s dance.

The second performer was Joseph Wunderlich who played an original song on the guitar. He utilized a photograph of his girlfriend facing away from the audience to give the performance an artistically appealing image to look at while he played guitar. It was creative of Wunderlich to display a photograph of his inspiration for the piece without specifically stating the song was about the girl.

First-year John Duttenhofer performed popular songs in beatboxing form. It was a unique and unexpected performance. By having a beatboxer in the mix of performances for the evening, it added a surprising and diversified talent to the group. The crowd and myself were impressed by Duttenhofer’s talent.

Josh Fisherman,  performed an original song called “Hello World” singing and playing guitar. While he was talented, his song was very long, boring some audience members. Some audience members were even yawning.

Sophomores and friends, Hannah Paymer and Dylan Warner took the stage to sing “You and Me, but Mostly Me.” They both are excellent singers, but the song choice was not familiar to me, or any other members. The audience seemed to lack interest because they could not get into the song. It would have been wiser to select a show tune that is popular and relatable to viewers of different ages.

First-year Elise Stendal sang and played guitar to an alternative original song titled, “Rising.” I am biased because this is not my preferred style of genre, so I personally did not love it. However, Stendal is talented and the audience cheered loudly for her.

Junior Bradley Vasilik juggled and rode a unicycle. His performance mastered stage presence due to the use of upbeat music and dramatic usage of lights. The performance was exciting and received enthusiastic screams from viewers.

Junior Megan Stone performed “Danny Boy,” in an opera-like fashion. She was very talented in her alto pieces but got pitchy during her soprano parts. Some audience members nearby cringed. She should have selected a song that showcased her excellent alto skills.

Lastly, first-year Hunter Reiner, his father and friend, Austin Brown gave a rock concert vibes to Leffler Chapel. Reiner came out playing his electric guitar and audience member screamed with excitement. The group played a number of songs, but it did not feel too long. This is so because Reiner and his band were clearly having an awesome time performing.

After voting polls closed, the winners were announced. First place was awarded to Reiner and his band, second to Stendal’s singing and third place to Vasilik’s juggling act.

Overall, Etown’s Got Talent was a fun and well-organized event. There was a diversity of talents in the production; the proceeds helped a worthy cause. To better prepare for the event, there should have been more practices and rehearsals to ensure that performances were audience ready. Additionally, the co-hosts should have practiced transitions between acts to make them smoother and more informational for the audience members. This annual event could be better advertised in the future by sending emails weeks in advance and asking for auditions from a variety of talents.

Hunter and friends celebrating Hunter’s first place win at Etown’s Got Talent.

Article by: Brianna Titi

Humans of Etown 2018 Kaley Frantz

Meet Kaley Frantz by Brianna Titi 
            Kaley Frantz in her dorm room

About Kaley Frantz

Sophomore Kaley Frantz is a social work major at Elizabethtown College. She describes herself as an extremely extroverted individual who is bubbly, determined, motivated and caring towards others. When not in classes, Frantz can be found studying, spending time with her roommate and best friends and seeking fun adventures on and off campus.

Attraction to Etown

Frantz was initially interested in the College because of the social work department. “I was impressed by the social work department and all they had to offer,” she explained. Frantz also preferred going to a small college because it seemed like an ideal fit for her. Furthermore, she loved the atmosphere of the campus. “Everyone I met had a friendly and welcoming attitude, which attracted me towards selecting Elizabethtown,” she commented.

Roommate Memories

Frantz reminisces the first day of college when she met her roommate. Frantz was excited that they were both social work majors, hoping that they would have common interests. However, her roommate was random and the two had never met before. “I remember seeing that she had the exact same bedroom sheets as me and I instantly knew we would be best friends, Frantz said with a huge smile. “Julianna and I could literally not get along any better as roommates than we do. Our relationship is simple and great.” Frantz and current sophomore Julianna Giannantonio will be rooming together for the third consecutive year as in the fall of 2018.

Daily College Life

On a typical weekday, Frantz attends her classes. On Tuesday’s and Thursday’s, she works at the local nursery, Elizabethtown Community Nursery School, which is within walking distance. Frantz loves helping with the children. She is in the process of becoming a tour guide and is involved with the social work club on campus.

Frantz does not have one particular fondest memory of Etown, but rather a compilation of fun times. “I love hanging out with my friends and taking the time to enjoy college,” she says. While Frantz is known to study hard, she takes time to relax and relish campus life.

Community-Based Service

As a part of the social work major, students are required to participate in community-based learning. Currently, Frantz has done 15 hours at three distinct locations: Conestoga View Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, Joshua Group in Harrisburg and GEARS in Elizabethtown. From these experiences, Frantz has gained valuable knowledge. “It is helpful to have these exposures on a personal and a professional level,” she explained. “I have discovered so much about myself, others and the world in general through community-based service learning.”

Nicaragua Trip

This past winter break, Frantz went on a service-based trip to Nicaragua. It was her first time leaving the country, so she felt a mixture of feelings of nervousness and excitement. “It was truly a life-changing event for me; it was incredible to immerse myself in the culture and the children there,” she explained. “The world is so much bigger than you think; eons bigger than small town PA.”

While in Nicaragua, Frantz and other students helped teach the children English. Each week, the children learned vocabulary and this week they focused on body parts. Frantz and other students also incorporated arts and crafts in the children’s day. “Many of the children have never seen a paintbrush or canvas,” Frantz said. “We taught them how to express themselves through art, which was transformational for the kids.”

Frantz reflected on how the trip has altered her life. “I and my fellow students may have only made a small impact on them, but the children have made a huge impact on me,” she said. “People in the U.S. and other developed countries complain about going to school every day, but the children of Nicaragua would die to have that experience.”

Not only did Frantz love helping the children, but she also enjoyed visiting Nicaragua. “The country itself is incredibly beautiful,” she said. “The mountains and landscape are breathtaking.”

Future Aspirations

Post college, Frantz dreams of working as a social work major with children in some capacity. She first plans on attending graduate school. Frantz hopes to obtain a steady job that she loves. “Working with children will make me really happy,” she said.  “I am very excited to start using what I have learned in college and becoming a real adult in the world.”

 

Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania Citizen Journalism