Free to Play – After five years, Fallout Shelter is still a great choice

by Nathan Dutil

Marcelo Jabulas – Free games can be a good option to have fun without putting your hand in your pocket. But one should also be aware of developer tricks that trick the player into spending on small in-game transactions. But for those who have the patience and resilience to

Fallout Shelter, which was a hit on mobile phones, also won the console edition. The game that places the player in the administration of a Vault – which in a literal translation from English means safe, but in the game means the shelter from the nuclear apocalypse radiation that affects the series – has arrived on consoles mid-2018 and still trails as one of Bethesda’s highest-grossing games and also one of its most addictive.

Free, Fallout Shelter asks the player to build the facilities of the shelter. Electricity generation, water treatment, dormitories, laboratory, gymnasium, restaurants, workshops and all that is necessary to live underground.

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In the game, it is not enough to build. You have to know how to delegate tasks to the right people. During the game, people appear looking for shelter. Each of these characters has an attribute bar called SPECIAL, where each letter corresponds to an ability such as strength, perception, agility, charisma, and intelligence.

And each task in the vault requires a type of skill. It is therefore necessary to delegate the functions according to the best skills. In addition to making the inhabitants happier, there is a productivity gain in basic inputs: water, food and energy. If any of these three items become rare, chaos can ensue in the vault.


The console version also features so-called quests (out of cover missions), which were included in the PC edition. The player can delegate to the members of the refuge who go to discover the “Lost Land”. These excursions are good opportunities to get weapons, clothes, leftovers and experience points. These costumes are essential for the best performance of the characters.

The missions, on the other hand, allow the player to form a team and lead it through different scenarios, which in the explorations were not playable. However, to access the missions, you need to build an office, which requires at least 20 dwellers in the vault. The missions are quite fun and help to break the routine, in a repetitive way, from the shelter, giving more dynamism to the game.


Playing in front of the TV is much more comfortable than on the phone screen. On the other hand, it is not easy to control all the functions of the game with your fingertips (or with the mouse, in the PC version). On consoles, it takes some practice to navigate with the directional pads.

With them you arrive in each room and then with the same you control each of the inhabitants. It’s a bit of work at the beginning, especially in moments of tension, when there is an invasion of looters, mutant cockroaches or fire in the places.

Moreover, the mobile version has the convenience of playing anywhere. On the bus, on the subway, on the plane, while waiting for the dentist, in the bathroom, which is not possible in the console edition.

Fallout Shelter was named one of the best mobile games of 2015. The console edition is welcome. However, one must be aware of the temptations of in-game transactions. There are several packs of equipment, upgrades, credits, among other benefits with prices ranging from R$ 3.50 to R$ 350. In 2015, this small market brought in Bethesda’s coffers no less than US$5.1 million in the first two weeks the game was made available.

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