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Press Start with Fallout 4, Mario Maker and women in gaming

Fallout 4 fell in on Tuesday, and we could easily recap this week with nothing but stories about the wasteland role-playing game. (For my money, the unlimited-adhesive strategy is probably the most valuable spoiler-free tip yet. Check it out.)

All was not rads and mods and perks and specs, though. Nintendo returned with a ton of news in its first Nintendo Direct presentation since the summer. And EA Sports announced a sequel to its UFC series, arriving two years after the original, and the cover star promptly lost her first bout after that announcement. But yeah, it was Fallout, Fallout, and Fallout 4 this week.

We're still rebooting on Sunday with a look back at the past seven days of reports, opinion and insight into games and gamer culture with Press Start, recapping the week to get you ready for the one to come.

Last Week in Five Stories

  1. Fallout 4 Guide

    How to win friends, kill Raiders and influence survivors after the nukes drop. We've organized quests based on the likely order many players might experience during their playthroughs. It assumes you're taking your time with the game rather than mainlining the story.

  2. How the leading women of Assassin's Creed syndicate and Halo 5 are changing games

    This year, the traditionally male-fronted series of video gaming feature women at the helm. Major fall releases like Fallout 4, Call of Duty: Black Ops 3 and more each allow players to select a female character. It's a trend whose significance was not lost on Laura Bailey, who portrays Halo 5's Spartan Olympia Vale, and Victoria Atkin, who made her video game debut as the Assassin's Creed Syndicate heroine Evie Frye.

  3. The case for weird Mario

    In developing Super Mario Maker, Nintendo threw out many of the rules that it had established and used to guide Mario games for 30 years. In letting players make their own levels, it had to decide how much freedom to give them, and how silly to allow them to be with ideas that might not fit in a traditional Mario game.

  4. Does Fallout 4 know how to say your name?

    Fallout 4 introduces a companion named Codsworth, a robot butler who, among other talents, can say a whole bunch of names. According to Bethesda, more than 1,000 names were read by voice actor Stephen Russell — but is your handle one of the lucky ones?

  5. From sex symbol to icon: How Crystal Dynamics saved Lara Croft

    Lara Croft faced one of her deadliest situations in 2008. Tomb Raider: Underworld failed to meet sales expectations. After 12 years, it was uncertain if gamers were still interested in her. The Tomb Raider team changed everything in 2013. Gone were the skimpy wetsuits and sexually suggestive marketing, and Lara became one of the best written, emotionally relatable women in gaming history.

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