I finally started playing Fallout 3 on David's recommendation. I'd watched him play it last fall when he first bought it and I didn't think I would like the game mechanics. David encouraged me to try it out a couple weeks ago and I did because of the promise of achievements (see post below).
It turns out that I love the game. I'm hooked on the story, even if the mechanics are strange. It's an alternate reality post-WWIII story set two hundred years after nuclear war. My character, Jennifer (original, I know), was an inhabitant of Vault 101, a large fallout survival shelter. Mysterious things happen and I end up going to the surface which isn't what the Vault leaders taught us it would be. David is also playing through it and he's started a great blog that journals his experience from the point of view of his character. Tales of a Vault Dweller is just starting out, but it's a very good read so far.
This game is huge. There's so much to do and explore that I found it overwhelming at first. The game has been lauded for how open it is, but personally I could really use a little more linearity. It's very easy to get distracted from the main story by side quests, and also easy to get so caught up in side quests that you get burnt out and never finish the story. Also, some side quests have an unannounced time limit. For example, you can agree to help a friendly town out of a jam, but taking too long will turn them hostile towards you. I'm trying to balance both the side quests and the main story so I can get it all done. It's a really good and compelling game.
Perhaps I will learn my lesson from this and try out games a little sooner when David recommends them instead of waiting six months.