Prilladog, thanks for chatting with us during this busy time for you. Fallout: London was first revealed during last year's E3. Can you tell us a bit about how this project started and how it has evolved over time?
The project in its form today started in 2019, originally as a conversation with one of my friends about the idea of an Atom-Punk London. Simple chats about the double-decker buses, the landmarks, the Queen, all of it. That really set the seed. And whilst I went away backpacking, I couldn't stop thinking of the idea. We'd started getting a team together to discuss the plausibility of everything, but it was only when I got grounded by the pandemic did the project truly begin to become what it is now. We've worked tirelessly to make this the best Fallout 4 mod there is and we hope, in the snippets everyone has seen, that they see how much work and passion has gone into this.
The scope of this mod is incredible. You have shown us areas like Eastminster, the Tower of London and much more. How large would you say the world will be in comparison to that of Fallout 4?
We aimed originally to have a main world space the same size as the base vanilla game, which we more than achieved. From end to end, the map is as large as the Commonwealth. But we also have 5 'hub' worlds - think Diamond City, but larger. If you were to combine all of those, they are roughly the size of Far Harbour. So, Fallout: London in its entirety is about the size of the Commonwealth and Far Harbour combined.
The previously mentioned areas are only a few of the iconic landmarks present in London. What others have you included in your world and how have you tackled introducing them?
The divergence is an aspect of the Fallout lore which we have adhered to 100% As such, all of the historical buildings you'd expect are there. Big Ben, St Paul’s, British Museum etc. But we have even included the ones only a person from London might recognise, like UCL or the Cutty Sark. Due to the split in time, however, it has allowed us to diverge the newer buildings and create some cool and Atom-Punk styled landmarks, such as a revised Millennium Dome, the Shard and One Canada Water.
Obviously the setting of this mod is unlike any previous Fallout. What are your favourite new ideas that you have been able to introduce as a result of the mod being set in the UK? And what classic Fallout tropes have British counterparts?
My personal favourite idea that we’ve included is 'The Family' from the Protect and Survive series. We were lucky enough that all of the content regarding it was fully in the public domain, so its inclusion (especially since Vault-Boy was loosely based on them) seemed obvious. For anyone who saw our gameplay trailer, you'll notice a distinct lack of Vault-Tec and Vault-Boy, instead, you'll notice the Pindar stations and 'The Family' from the Protect and Survive series.
As we all know, British weather has its own special rainy charm. What sort of weather can we expect in the post-apocalyptic UK?
For the ease of filming, we decided to use a brighter day so you can see everything more clearly in the train section of the video. For the entirety of the game, however, you can certainly expect that those bright days will be few and far between. Those classic grey skies and rain will certainly be a mainstay of the mod. We are also utilising, with permission, some of the weather systems included in the Polluted Climates mod which is already on the Nexus. Most excitingly, however, we are also planning to include a new system which utilises an 'Acid Rain' mechanic.
Weather variance can change a lot in a game's feel. With this in mind, what kind of biomes have you created for players to explore and immerse themselves in?
We realised quite early on that playing in only London's city centre would be both boring and bad on the FPS. As such, we extended the world map out to include some of the greener areas around Wandsworth and Bromley - this should allow the player to really get a different feel than that in the centre. We also have distinct biomes such as the fracked land over in Croydon, and the Blight in Greenwich.
Congratulations on your recent gameplay trailer, which has received nearly 2 million views. In it, we can see that you capture the eerie sense of mystery that is so common to typical Fallout game starts. Would you say that the intrigue between Mr Smythe and the Wayfarer will be the driving force of the story, and has it taken inspiration from other games or will it go in a new direction?
Whilst one cannot deny the importance of Smythe, nor the mystery that surrounds them, it is not the be-all and end-all of the mod. In fact, we made sure that our story worked similar to that of Fallout: New Vegas, in which each of the faction’s leaders are vying for power and are all as important as each other. We wanted to do this so the player can really feel the consequences of their actions when they interact with one of the main factions.
We also saw from the trailer that you cast Colin Baker and Sylvester McCoy, known to fans of the Doctor Who series as the Sixth and Seventh incarnations of the Doctor, to voice the two scientists who take the player character through the customization process. How did they get involved with the project?
When working with famous people, it is worth remembering that at the end of the day, they are just humans. If you can get in contact with them and pitch your idea, they alone will decide if they are interested in helping you or not - it really is that simple. The real challenge is obviously getting in contact in the first place, as well as getting past their agents. For example, we did reach out to Liam Neeson. However, he informed us he didn't wish to be a part of the series anymore; we respected that choice and are just thankful he gave us the time in the first place. But if you don't ask, you don't get.
It seems from your logo, as well as the phrase "Mind the gap", that the London Underground is an important part of your mod. Can you elaborate on what role the Underground will play in this world you have created?
We would be foolish not to have such a famous transportation network featured in the mod. The 'tube' really is the lifeline of London, and this is no different in the mod. The original plan was to make the Underground work like in Fallout 3, in order to cut down what we needed to build, but after time we realised - why not have both? Thus, the underground system will work closer to how it does in Fallout 4, as dungeons and hideouts, but also have elements of Fallout 3 where it will help you get to closed-off areas.
What are some of the greatest challenges your team have faced on this journey and what are the most daunting obstacles still to come?
The most daunting challenge for our team is making sure we create something that everyone enjoys. The entire purpose of the mod was to make something that people will have fun playing and can enjoy immersing themselves in. We have never done this for fame, glory or industry jobs - the fact it's happened is a bit mind-boggling, to be honest. Our only intention was to develop the best project we can for the community, and that will forever be our greatest challenge.
We know that a release date is not something that can be indicated for a fan-made project as large as this one, but how far along in the process would you say you are roughly?
Actually, we can indicate a release date! We will be announcing our planned release window during our panel at the FalloutForHope event with Wes Johnson's "VoiceAPalooza", which aims to raise money for charity. We hope to see everyone there!
You have previously released several standalone mods that are part of the larger project such as the Bren gun mod and the You got a licence for that pack. Are there any more upcoming standalone mods we can look forward to?
Certainly. Due to the pandemic, our last 'Roadmap' got side-lined quite significantly and although we finished it, it wasn't without its delays. However, the new one we are planning to announce should be smooth sailing and bring plenty of new outfits and weapons for everyone to use.
If other modders want to help and make Fallout: London a success, how can they get involved?
We are very much getting to the end of development in a lot of departments. However, if you're a level designer, a scripter or an animator please drop us a message on our Discord or over on our Website!
Thank you for taking the time to talk to us today. Is there anything you and your team would like to convey to the Nexus Mods community?
The biggest point we’d like to convey is just to help us spread the word about the mod. We do this for the community and the more people who know about it, the more people will play it - and that’s all we’ve ever wanted!
A big thank you to Prilladog from Team FOLON for taking the time to talk to us! If there's an author or mod project you'd like to know more about, send your suggestions to Happybara.