Fallout 3 patch boosts 360 graphics

Specular maps are back.

The nondescript Fallout 3 update released to PC and Xbox 360 owners earlier this week has quietly restocked the 360 version with missing visual effects.

According to Eurogamer's Face-Off maestro Rich Leadbetter's blog, Inside Digital Foundry, the auto-update patch introduces specular maps to certain areas, delightfully illustrated with shots of bugs and a comparison video.

The Xbox 360 version was the better of the two console releases when Fallout 3 released in late October last year, but as Leadbetter points out, "despite its superior frame rate and full-on 4x MSAA, [it] had flaws of its own - notably some inferior textures when viewed close up, along with a lack of specular maps on the monsters and characters, resulting in a somewhat flat look compared to the other versions of the game".

In the end we concluded in our Fallout 3: Triple-Format Face-Off that a reasonably-specced PC was the best option.

Meanwhile, the Fallout 3 patch you've probably already downloaded also prepares the PC and 360 versions of the game for the release of the next downloadable content update, The Pitt, which is expected before the end of the month.

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