Spoiler Warning S5E2: Aren’t Tutorials Fun?

By Shamus
on Apr 7, 2011
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning

222 comments


Link (YouTube)

I mentioned my brother in this episode (Patrick, in the comments) and how he tried to go for Vegas. He ran into a chorus line of Deathclaws. We both agreed this was stupid. It looks ridiculous to see them standing shoulder-to-shoulder like that. And if you’re so adamant that it should be impossible to go that way, why not just build a wall?

Oddly enough, I stuck to the rails. I resented them, but I was afraid I’d miss something.

Enjoyed this post? Please share!

Footnotes:


A Hundred!A Hundred!202222 COMMENTS? What are you people talking about?!?

From the Archives:

  1. Fat Tony says:

    Hey Shamus Pretty soon the youtube channel (Holy fuck i seem to have forgotten how to spell chanel???!!!!) will have this secon seires and the possibly a third (sooner or later) so after this seires It’s be advisable to start setting up the playlists on the SpoilerWerningShow’s Channel (???) so that we can choose to watch the episodes from certain seires easyer.

    1st Comment. =P

  2. therandombear says:

    I tried the same thing when I first started New Vegas, ran towards it but I got raped by mutant bloat flies ;_;

    Also, you are not alone Shamus, I too haven’t completed New Vegas yet.

    • Even says:

      They did put the warning signs there for a reason. I like the fact that they still made it technically possible if you try hard enough. I managed to find a cliff path past Sloan that hugs the Black Mountain on another run that completely skips the Deathclaws and lets you drop off far away from them. It was a pretty easy jog from there.

      • therandombear says:

        I don’t mind the spoilers, I enjoy this series ;)

      • Daemian Lucifer says:

        One of the dlcs also gives you a stealth boy,so you can use that to run past the deathclaws.

        Just like with the first game,where you couldve sneaked into the military base in the very beginning,if you knew your way around the game,and with some luck.

        • Kanodin says:

          Actually there is a bandit leader at the top of the Primm hotel who has at least 1 stealthboy, and I think there might be another up there somewhere. So no DLC needed to sequence break.

        • PurePareidolia says:

          There’s another stealth boy in the Good Springs School, but I always just took the Cazador route anyway – now at level 6 I have the Q33 matter modulator, 2x reinforced combat armour and all the mid-high level guns I could find on the fiends I killed.

          Then I got bored and just killed all the deathclaws by abusing the rocky terrain and the balcony on that train station place near the other end of the quarry.

          Sequence breaking is fun in this game.

      • Tizzy says:

        In the old Fallouts (*drink!*) you could move around the world as you pleased. It was dangerous, especially in the second one before you got your car, but the designers did not make it (almost) impossible. The result was that some stories could get a bit screwy if you visited places in the wrong order, but it was a price worth paying for that feeling of freedom.

        • Adam says:

          I dunno, I like a bit of solidarity in my stories, and am willing to put up with a little railroading to get it. Probably why the story in Fo3 didn’t bother me. (Until Lamplight, but we’ve been over that. :P)

      • acronix says:

        I actually passed by the cazadores infested road (the one that passes by Red Canyon). There`s always three big ones and four young ones. You can kill them if you have enough ammo (I had a laser pistol and the caravan shotgun and it was enough to pass there). Of course, after that I had to dodge the raiders, but those are a cakewalk in comparison since they require less terrain abuse (cazadores can`t fly to your high-position)

        • PurePareidolia says:

          Alternatively, melee weapons somehow help a lot, as long as you have a doctor’s bag and some antivenom on hand then just run back and enjoy the constant, reasonably high damage output. Then, once you get to the burned out camp, some guys have fire axes there and you’re officially in the money.

  3. Kanodin says:

    After clearing out Primm I decided it was time to go to Vegas. Didn’t even know I was sequence breaking at the time, though having to use stealthboys probably should have given that away.

    Also your running speed is actually based off of agility, so the reason tutorial lady seemed so fast is you didn’t put any points into it.

  4. Sydney says:

    Why do I get the feeling that the Trainz jokes will return once you get sick of the railroading again?

    CHOO CHOOOOOOO

    • Alexander The 1st says:

      I’m sure they will claw at the railroad tracks trying to get out.

      • Dantian says:

        I’m starting to think Shamus just likes to bitch, because he’s just plain wrong on this. New Vegas definitely leads you a certain direction, but you aren’t forced that way on rails. I’ve done each of the following on hard-hardcore immediately after finishing the tutorial quests:

        1. Head straight north. You get a trail carbine and some good armor. Dangerous, but entirely doable.
        2. Go through Hidden Valley.
        3. Sneak past the Deathclaws. Yes, you can do this.
        4. There is a spot northwest of Nipton with super mutant masters that carry seriously heavy weapons early (light machine gun, super sledge, mini-gun), bring chems and ammo and take one out. There, now the entire map is open to you. You’re welcome.

        • Patrick the Placated says:

          I think you’re missing the point.
          How many times did you have to try all of that over and over before you got it right? How many times did you die failing to sneak past the claws? Or killing a super mutie at level 4? How did you know those things were even there? The point is not that it can’t be done at an early level, ( it can be done, which is nice that the game does let you break off the rails if you want ). It’s that the game forces you down a path that you don’t clearly see initially, using save/die/reload as the tool to teach you where to go next. Sure you can jump ahead on the path if you have the patience to die 12 times fighting a mutie, but thats not obvious until you have played through at least once.

          While it is nice that the rails aren’t rigid like some games, they also aren’t very obvious either. Some people don’t mind dying and reloading. I hate losing the last 25 minutes of gaming because I didn’t know this road was infested with deathclaws and muties.

          • Daemian Lucifer says:

            “It’s that the game forces you down a path that you don’t clearly see initially, using save/die/reload as the tool to teach you where to go next.
            .
            .
            .”

            Not true.If you talk to people they tell you there are deathclaws to the north and that it is dangerous and you should follow the roundabout road.Its not obvious only if you dont want to talk to people and decide to explore on your own,in which case you deserve to get killed by the monsters.

            These are very good rails here,and they feel quite natural.Its a wild wasteland.Its supposed to be dangerous and tough to navigate.You are supposed to rely on all the help you can get in order to live in it.Loners are quickly being disposed of,as they should be.

            • acronix says:

              Also, the mentioned warning signs. There`s one on each “way” out of Goodsprings. But also there`s Victor, who will spawn close to you if you take the wrong road and warn you about how dangerous it is out there.

              • Lame Brain says:

                and honestly, shouldn’t exploring be dangerous? If there was no risk, why would it be fun?

                Why are people complaining that it is too hard to break the rails? If the game didn’t present you a path to follow, then there is no narrative. If the game just said “meh. fine go directly to Vegas” then it wouldn’t be an accomplishment when you were able to do so.

                Honestly people, If New Vegas is too much “On Rails” for you, go play Minecraft.

                • Daemian Lucifer says:

                  But that game forces you to punch things before you can make any tools.And you must dig down if you want to find metal.Why cant you just find metal floating in the sky?Its just one huge railroad![/superboy prime whiny voice]

                • Even says:

                  As far as I can tell it’s mostly due to a misconception of where the potential rails might be going to. The game’s not exactly subtle about showing you the city as a point of interest. Still, I’m surprised to see so many people complaining about the monster walls specifically. I didn’t get the itch to go there straight away, but explored around the area nevertheless, despite the NPC warnings. But after seeing the warning signs, dying once or twice and talking with the guy in Sloan I pretty much concluded that I should probably try not to tempt fate any further. I’d say that’s the better sort of railroading when compared to some other games.

                  Personally I had more problems trying to get interested and immersed in the main plot, when they basically just shoehorn it onto you. The Goodsprings questline felt even more awkward when you’re just a stranger barely back from the brink of death and suddenly you’re all game with protecting/murdering people you’ve never met. That’s mostly why I’ve never gone the Powder Ganger route, because it makes no sense. The townsfolk at least saved your life so you sort of owe them, even if it was just the robot and the doc doing all the work.

                  Thankfully it does get better the further you get.

                • Daemian Lucifer says:

                  @Patrick
                  Woah there,cool your jets a bit.That comment about rails in minecraft was not directed at you,and was not serious in the least.The comment that I did direct to you was the earlier one.You say the rails are not obvious,and I disagree,because everyone you ask about directions tells you that north is dangerous.Plus,as acronix said,there are numerous signs on the street telling you this.The only more obvious way to tell you to go around would be to have a huge blimp with neon letters pointing you to the south.

                  And sure there are problems with the game,lots of them.I even harped for quite a while about the damn bugs.I didnt defend the game because it was my creation,nor because I think it is perfect,but because I do not agree with your statement the rails are not obvious enough.

                • Jeff says:

                  I think some of these people have it completely backwards.

                  The idea that certain areas are dangerous coexists perfectly with the idea of a sandbox. In fact, that’s the ideal sandbox. You don’t run to Vivec and expect to kill an Ordinator at level 1.

                  The idea that you can go wherever you want “because it is a sandbox” is a stupid one. It’s the same kind of thinking that leads to every enemy in the world being the exact same challenge to you, regardless of if you’ve achieved demi-god status or are so inept you can’t kill a rat.

                  A sandbox means you’re free to go where you want and do what you want – and suffer the consequences for doing so.

                • Abnaxis says:

                  Exploring isn’t dangerous. It’s impossible. If you deviate even slightly from the rails, a deathclaw/cazador/giant radscorpion comes down and smacks you straight. That’ll teach you for trying to do your own thing, instead of what the developers intended.

                  I’ll admit, If you come to the game expecting a linear path a la Final Fantasy, you won’t find this disappointing. For you, it is a better method of putting the player on the rails than, say, and invisible forcefield. But if you’re like me, and don’t give a whit about the main narrative–you just want to explore–it starts to reach DIAS levels of discouragement.

                  “Oh check it out, a cave!” *smack* *reload* “Oh, guess the developer doesn’t want me to go that way…Hey, an interesting looking building!” *smack* *reload* “Ugh, well what about the cool looking patch of desert that’s only slightly out of my w-” *smack* “GOD DAMNIT!!” *shuts game down*

                • Daemian Lucifer says:

                  @Abnaxis

                  Like numerous people have already pointed out,its not impossible.You can go to the city early on.Just because you didnt find a way,it doesnt mean the way doesnt exist.

                  Plus,what are you talking about no room for exploration?I explored numerous things before I should,like the prison,hidden valley and the solar array,to name the few.Of course,it required me to down a whole pharmacy and abuse vats every second,but it was never impossible.

                • Jeff says:

                  @Abnaxis
                  The problem, quite bluntly, is you.

                  You went in expecting Bethesda’s sandboxes. FO3 was built like that, to the dismay of the FO gronards. FNV was built precisely to avoid Bethesda’s sandbox, and be more like the original FOs. Guess what? If you ignored the towns and accidentally wandered into the basin back in FO2, the mutants there will eat you up. Accidentally wander near the Enclave troops and they’ll melt your tribal ass.

            • Abnaxis says:

              The way I see it, the problem with the soft rails are:

              Most importantly, it punishes players who approach the game with what could otherwise be consdiered a reasonable set of expectations. If you hand me a sandbox game, I expect to be able to flip the designers off and wander off the rails. To me, that’s what sandbox means. I’m not saying it’s unreasonable to play and RPG expecting to be lead around by the nose (heck, it’s par for the course in most RPGs that aren’t Fallout), but neither is it stupid to approach Fallout expecting to be able to color outside the lines a bit either.

              The rails don’t feel natural to me. There aren’t hotspots of danger you need to avoid, there are corridors of safety where any slight deviation in course results in immediate punishment. When leaving Goodspings, the only direction you may go is south–there are deathclaws to the north, cazadors to East, and map edge to the West. Once you reach Nipton (not sure if the name is right), you must immediately head east, or you will run into giant radscorpions, but not before then or you will run into either the aforementioned cazadors, or super-mutants, or giant radscorpions, or toxic waste, or impassible terrain, depending on just how soon you try to escape your pre-ordained path. Next, you must double back and head back north, lest you run afoul of some other severe death-dealing obstacle which I haven’t discovered yet because I ran out of patience by this point.

              And yes, you can get past all of these things, but only by metagaming, for metagaming reasons. You have to either save scum your way through or take advantage of the fact that even though cazadors can fly, they aren’t samrt enough to attack you if you stand on a seven-foot-tall rock (and Deathclaws are similarly disadvantaged, but that’s at least understandable since they aren’t obviously flying and they should be able to reach you so cheap AI). And for all of this, if you don’t know where you are going, you will run into–surprise!–more cheap death at the hands of overpowered foes.

              Now, I’m not saying this system isn’t an improvement. I feel like we’ve moved out from the normal video game realm of railroading via waist-high fences and invisible forcefields (which, while still present, are at least relatively rare in FNV), and we’ve moved into the realm of bad-DM railroading–the sort where an inexperienced DM will use brute force to make his players follow his campaign with little concern for thier own free will.

              Just because it is better doesn’t mean there isn’t anything to criticize, however. I prefer the straightjacket a bit looser, because the game lost all interest for me when I realized I couldn’t explore anything outside the small area alotted to me by the plot–at least, not without completely pulling out of my character and meta-gaming.

              • Even says:

                I’d say that the one major advantage it has it that it introduces to you a lot of the Mojave in a relatively short span of time. You get to meet two of the major factions upfront, 4 different companions (3 of which you can potentially hire almost straight away) and all in all pretty much gets you on the level with recent history and the current situation in the area. When you reach Outer Vegas, the worst of the railroading is mostly over and you’ve got pretty much free reign from there on.

                For all the bad things, I’d argue it still does its job fairly well (in this game anyway).

              • Someone says:

                The best, easiest and most low-level friendly way to get to Vegas is through the Scorpion Gulch – Hidden Valley mountain pass. It’s not that hard and it doesn’t require savescumming. I didn’t feel that I was metagaming when I discovered it, on the contrary, I felt like an outdoorsman navigating my way through a dangerous area.

                The problem with this one is that noone thinks to look for it. Everyone just sees the wall-o-deathclaws and thinks: “Welp, the designers don’t want me to go there”, since our meta-knowledge of gamedesign tells us that. To counter this, the game should have acknowledged that there is an alternate route by having NPCs in Sloan mention it or, better yet, having a quest where an NPC really wants to get to Vegas, knows about the passageway but is too scared to follow it alone.

              • Daemian Lucifer says:

                Sandbox is a very broad genre and should not be used so all encompassingly.Minecraft is a sandbox game,and it is waaaay different than fallout games.So expecting new vegas to play like minecraft is wrong.Second,you are entering a world that is unknown to you,and instead of asking people about it you just venture blindly and then say how its the games fault for not making the boundaries clear enough?If you ask for directions,you are led point by point to the city,avoiding the unsurmountable dangers and having to deal only with the lesser things until you get stronger.But,if you adopt the “I dont need to ask for directions stance”,dont go blame the game for not telling you that youll die quickly(and hey,even then it tells you in other ways).

                The inexperienced gm way you mentioned earlier is not whats being used here.You dont get this open road leading to a death pit,you get this open road behind a town full of people happy to tell you that the road leads to a death pit.Its your own fault if you dont want their help and think you can just trounce wherever you want.Not to mention that the game shows the dangers of the wasteland in the very intro,yet you think it is a safe place where anyone can stroll whistling nonchalantly without any help?

                Just because players got used to being hand held through games and never had to scrounge informations on their own doesnt mean the game where you have to inform yourself before you tread into danger is designed badly.

                Now is it perfect?No.Can it be improved on?Heck yes.But the way it is now is pretty good already.

                • Abnaxis says:

                  First, the broad sense is exactly what I meant when I said sandbox. Yes, Fallout and Minecraft are different. But there are fundamental attributes shared by both games that makes them fit into a “sandbox” category. Those attributes–specificly, freedom to explore and immerse youself in the world rather than following a linear narrative–are exactly what I am referring to here.

                  Second, your “People should know better” argument takes a very narrow view. Just because the NPCs tell you something is dangerous doesn’t make it so. In Borderlands, I walked by so many “KEEP OUT” signs in that game, I stopped noticing. Heck, in FNV, when the NCR tells you it’s too dangerous to cross to the other side of that one town with the casinos where the powder gangers are holed up, then you can go over there anyway and slaughter the convicts rather easily. It’s a common technique for making the player feel more badass, like their character is a force to be reckoned with. It’s not stupid for a player to take warnings from NPCs with a grain of salt, and it’s not fair to expect them to know the difference between a trope and a warning they are supposed to take seriously.

                  Most importantly, the problem isn’t just that there is a death pit that you need to go around, it’s that every single direction the writers don’t want you to go in will kill you. I’m fine with there being hotspots of danger I need to avoid. It makes exploring more fun. But there are literally walls of level-inappropriate foes in every cardinal direction that isn’t where you need to go for the plot. It’s like a bad DnD game–any action that doesn’t conform to the DM’s well laid out campaign results in an immediate rocks fall, everyone dies response. If you bought the game expecting more freedom than that (not unreasonable, since you could stretch your wings considerably more in FO3) it is very discouraging.

                • Daemian Lucifer says:

                  @Abnaxis

                  So you think the game is not fair because it doesnt conform to the cliches established by numerous other games?Thats a very weak argument.

                  Also:
                  “it’s that every single direction the writers don’t want you to go in will kill you”

                  Is completely untrue.The prison is populated by numerous foes with lots of weaponry,and should not be explored early on.But,by chugging down all my pills(mostly stolen),using a stealth boy,and not shying away from the vats button,Ive cleaned it out fairly early(around level 6 or so).It resulted in me getting some serious cash very early in the game,plus some energy weapons,which was very nice.Was it difficult?Yup.Was it impossible?Heck no.

                  But no,just because you werent able to do it,it means no one is able to do it,and thus its a badly conducted railroading.I never used me not being able to go past all the deathclaws at the very start as an excuse to say that its not possible,and lo and behold,people with more skill than me proved it very well is possible.

                  Personal experiences differ,and you may not like the game because of your experience,but dont go accusing it of doing something it does not.

                • Abnaxis says:

                  @Damien: “So you think the game is not fair because it doesnt conform to the cliches established by numerous other games?Thats a very weak argument.”

                  Where do cliches come into this? When I go out and buy a piece of intellectual property, there are things I expect out of it, escpecially if the company advertising gives me no reason to expect otherwise. FNV is a games that promises freedom and exploration; after I shill out fifty bucks for it, I expect freedom and exploration when I play.

                  “Is completely untrue.The prison is populated by numerous foes with lots of weaponry,and should not be explored early on.”

                  The prison is a bad example, because it misses the point entirely. I have no problem with there being nests of foes too tough for me to defeat at a low level. It’s fine if I have to turn tail and run from something tough while I am exploring.

                  My problem is, explicitly, with the exterior map. The only directions you can go in are the ones the designers have chosen for you. Any deviation, and you will run into foes which are not level appropriate.

                  “But no, just because you werent able to do it, it means no one is able to do it, and thus its a badly conducted railroading. I never used me not being able to go past all the deathclaws at the very start as an excuse to say that its not possible, and lo and behold, people with more skill than me proved it very well is possible.”

                  You presume too much. I am, in fact, one of those people who ran the gauntlet and made it to the other side. But the only way it can be done is if a) you have a decent level of skill not possessed by all gamers, b) you make a dedicated effort to breach the defenses at a specific point, including blowing most–if not all–of your resources and c) you break immersion (I don’t care how good you are, you’re not going to find the weak points without dying a few times unless you have a substantial amount of luck or you look it up online).

                  All of these things contribute to discourage exploration. ‘A’ is bad because–believe it or not–there are some people who like exploring but aren’t good at shooters. ‘B’ is bad because if it takes all of my combined resources to walk off the road, I can’t exactly do it very often, can I? ‘C’ is bad because the whole point of exploring is to immerse yourself in the world the designers have created.

                  “Just because players got used to being hand held through games and never had to scrounge informations on their own doesnt mean the game where you have to inform yourself before you tread into danger is designed badly.”

                  Note that example in my post above, where the NCR officer tells you it’s too dangerous to go somewhere and he’s full of shit? Like, from the game where you’re saying players need to pay attention to NPCs? The only difference between the people in Sloan wanring me not to go North and the officer warning me against going to the East side of Primm is that I, the player, knew what the difference is between a convict and a deathclaw before I booted the game up. When half the warnings are bullshit and the other half have merit, how do I know which I am supposed to believe?

                  “Personal experiences differ, and you may not like the game because of your experience, but dont go accusing it of doing something it does not.”

                  I am accusing it of punishing people who came to it expecting a sandbox world they can enjoy exploring–a feature it is advertised as having. Sure, maybe eventually, after you jump through enough hoops and appease the writers enough, you can; HOWEVER, I don’t think it’s invalid to criticize a game for making you sit through the stuff you don’t enjoy for hours before you actually get to move on to the content you like. I know many people who gave up on the game before they got to the part they would have enjoyed.

                • Daemian Lucifer says:

                  @Abnaxis

                  “Where do cliches come into this?”

                  Here:
                  “and it’s not fair to expect them to know the difference between a trope and a warning they are supposed to take seriously.”

                  “FNV is a games that promises freedom and exploration”

                  Yes,and it also promises lots of combat,enemies,and post apocalyptic wasteland.Yet you expect there to be just one of those?Again,this is not minecraft where you can turn the enemies off.Its a game about a post apocalyptic wasteland,a very dangerous place.And you want it to be tame?

                  “The prison is a bad example, because it misses the point entirely. .
                  .
                  .
                  .
                  Any deviation, and you will run into foes which are not level appropriate.”

                  So,you dont mind there being hotspots of tough enemies,but you mind there being hotspots of tough enemies preventing you from seeing whats behind the hotspots of tough enemies?And how is prison the bad example?Its one of the numerous ways you can take to go from west to east,you know one of the many roads you keep saying there is only one of.

                  “You presume too much. I am, in fact, one of those people who ran the gauntlet and made it to the other side.”

                  Then why do you keep saying how its impossible to do when you yourself did it?

                  “But the only way it can be done is if
                  .
                  .
                  .
                  ‘C’ is bad because the whole point of exploring is to immerse yourself in the world the designers have created.”

                  Ignoring the c:
                  A)Why would you buy a combat-heavy game if all you want to do is see the sights without any trouble?
                  B)Whats the point of scrounging for resources if anyone and their dog can have tons of drugs,ammo and stimpaks any time they please?

                  “Note that example in my post above, where the NCR officer tells you it’s too dangerous to go somewhere and he’s full of shit?
                  .
                  .
                  .
                  how do I know which I am supposed to believe?”

                  Yeah,and I can kill a nest of deathclaws with my 30h level character with ease,so those folks telling me how dangerous it is are full of shit.That is the whole point of your character leveling up:You gain strength to overcome the dangers which were impossible for you in the beginning.Of course that those dangers you manage to overcome after several levels will become trivial when you gain even more levels and stuff.

                  Also,the guys in primm telling you of the danger,they tell you its the convicts that took over the town.The same convicts you already encountered before and learned bit about what they use and how tough they are.So you dont have just the word of the npc,but your own experiences to go on.Deathclaws,you only have the npcs words(not considering the metagame aspect).Big difference.

                  “I am accusing it of punishing people who came to it expecting a sandbox world they can enjoy exploring
                  .
                  .
                  .
                  I know many people who gave up on the game before they got to the part they would have enjoyed.”

                  And mario was advertised as a game with numerous fun levels to see.Does that mean all the difficulty shouldve been removed from the game so that everyone would be able to see them?You are neglecting everything else the game was also advertising,some of those things being combat,post apocalyptic wasteland and various monsters.

                  Fallout is not a hiking game,its a role playing game,where the role you assume is of a person in(and Im stressing this VERY important thing one more time)a dangerous wasteland.Not expecting any danger in a world of radioactive mutants and raiders is silly.

              • theLameBrain says:

                @Abnaxis
                I find your statement to be contradictory. First you Express a desire to jump the rails of the narrative, and then complain that the only way to do so is to metagame.

                Isn’t sequence-breaking inherently metagaming? I have played the beginning sequence of New Vegas MANY times (I like to make new characters) and the only time I ever ran into these obstacles is when I deliberately tried to. I wasn’t even aware they existed until I read about them here.

                • Abnaxis says:

                  Again, we’re getting at the fundamental outlook and expectations of the game.

                  You play the game and you expect a narrative. You watch the opening sequence and you create a character who you expect to follow the narrative. To you, breaking that narrative is metagaming.

                  I watch the narrative and I decide meh, I don’t want to make a character who is bent on revenge. I want to make a character who has just been handed a second chance at life, who wants to wander the wasteland and do good deeds for random strangers.

                  You never notice the rails, because the writers had you hooked from the opening cinematic.

                  I notice the rails, rather disastrously, within seconds after I leave Goodsprings.

                  I am now in a position where the only way to do what I want with my character is to completely break immersion and take advantage of the fact that this is a video game and I have the special powers of befuddling the AI and save scumming as a result, also known as metagaming. Either that, or I have to allow myself to be shoehorned into the narrative of the game.

                • Daemian Lucifer says:

                  @Abnaxis

                  Um,you very well can explore quite a huge stretch of land,in fact half the map,before you even get into new vegas.Heck,you can even bypass new vegas completely and explore another huge chunk of the map around it.And there is a plethora of side quests to do there.The only thing you have to avoid is going directly to the north.And somehow that means you are on the rails?Because there is a huge den of tough monsters directly to the north?And yes,there are monsters to the east as well,but you can outrun those.How is that not sandbox?

                  Again,sandbox in minecraft is not the same as sandbox in new vegas,and both differ from sandbox in prototype.Sandbox encompasses a huge number of games and is as a definitive as rpg.Diablo,final fantasy,zelda,baldurs gate,fallout and new vegas are all rpgs,yet they have very little in common.So why should sandbox games be different?

                  The ability to do something is not the same as option to do something.And sandbox games give you the option to do something,but dont necessarily have to give you the ability to do it right away.

              • Jeff says:

                “Most importantly, it punishes players who approach the game with what could otherwise be consdiered a reasonable set of expectations. If you hand me a sandbox game, I expect to be able to flip the designers off and wander off the rails.”

                This is the problem. You consider it a reasonable expectation. You also consider it a “sandbox game”. Sandboxes are for Bethesda. FNV was built by people who don’t like Bethesda’s sandboxes, for those who hated that Bethesda won the license.

                • Shamus says:

                  But now we’re arguing over the designer’s intent.

                  “This sucks.”

                  “The designers did that on purpose.”

                  “Okay then. So… I like it?”

                  We can argue about what they intended all day, since none of us know them personally. Saying you dislike an aspect of the game is still perfectly valid.

                  I think a big part of the problem is how abrupt the shift is. Level 1 stuff right next to level X stuff, where X is the level you would need to traverse that area without save-scumming. (Which is probably near the level cap.) If it got gradually harder the player could get the idea before they ran into a group of deathclaws. It also would feel less like “walls”.

        • Shamus says:

          What? You basically outline what a fantastic pain in the ass this is, proving that I’m right. Yes, I’m sure your route works. IF YOU KNOW IT AHEAD OF TIME.

          And then you accuse me of “bitching”, which is a major part of this series. It’s sometimes called “criticism”. You know: That thing I do all the time. Do you go watch Penn & Teller and complain that they spend entirely too much time doing magic?

          Sheesh.

          • Patrick the says:

            @shamus-please remove obnoxious post.

            @ damien…sorry…. i may have um….overreacted…. i sometimes do that. sorry….

          • Dantian says:

            There is rational criticism (basically everything you said about Fallout 3 counts as this), and then there is bitching. There is a difference between the two. One is calling a flaw out, and one is inventing a flaw to complain about.
            The game -does- make it difficult to break off of the beaten path the first time you play, but not impossible. The definition of railroading (as I understand it) is being literally forced down one set path, like in Final Fantasy. That isn’t even close to the case in New Vegas, you just have to be ready to kill some tough monsters (or sneak past them) to break off the rails.
            That annoys you? Well, sorry, but it isn’t an objective criticism of the game.

            • Shamus says:

              If something bugs me during a free-flowing conversation I’m going to say so. THAT’S WHAT THIS SHOW IS ABOUT.

              It’s true, it IS possible to bust through that ham-fisted, artificial-looking blockade. But I’m not going to memorize all aspects of all games before I do a show about them. If you can’t handle me saying not-nice things about a game – fair or not – then this will never be the show for you.

              • Deadpool says:

                Y’know, I never understood the need people have to have everyone agree with every single word they say… Seriously. Must be somehow related to the human tendency to gather together for safety or something…

                Seriously, if the hosts of the show were to curb their thoughts every second Spoiler Warning would SUCK. That’s what sets this apart. This is on the spot, unscripted conversations about the game. Some we agree with, some we don’t, but hell, that’s just their opinion.

                If you don’t like hearing other people’s opinions, what are you DOING here?

                For the record, I LIKE soft rails. I think they work, they give the developer some control while still keeping the universe logical. AND, it’s a Fallout tradition (Fallout 3 is the one who broke tradition!). But hey, to each his own.

              • Dantian says:

                I can handle you saying mean things, true or not, all day long. I’m just calling you on what I consider to be a six foot tall pile of bullshit. Doesn’t mean I don’t like the show, and I’m aware that if the show was nothing but praise it would be boring.

                How is the blockade more artificial than any other part of the game? They give reasons for the deathclaws being there, warn you ahead of time, and there are lots of ways around them. I think you’re just annoyed that the deathclaws ate you, that isn’t the same thing as you being railroaded.

  5. Ernheim says:

    You missed the snowglobe at the graveyard. Good grief, it’s almost as if you aren’t looking up every single secret on the wiki whilst playing it!

    I was kind of disappointed by those. Replacing the bobbleheads which gave legitimate skill bonuses and were generally hard to find, aside from a few, like strength and medicine, putting snowglobes in fairly obvious locations which are only worth 2k each feels kinda weak. Especially given that this game’s economy is if anything more broken than most RPGs, so that by the time you can cash in the snowglobes 2000 caps is chump change

    • Brother Pain says:

      On the other hand, the snow globes meant that you didn’t feel like an idiot for not hunting down every single one, or for maxing out attributes or skills.
      And on my first playthrough, 2k caps was a nice injection of cash at the point where I got into the Lucky 38.

    • Sekundaari says:

      Don’t get me started on how many wiki secrets they missed during the second season. I remember at least… one. Sort of. They did the puzzle quest in the Museum of Technology, but never went to retrieve their proper reward, the Xuanlong Rifle. Granted, Reginald wasn’t much of a gunslinger, and the diner with the reward was a long hike away. But I’m sure they missed many books and bobbleheads too.

    • Someone says:

      I thought it was a great change. It meant I could finally leave the shiny object collection to obssesive-compulsives and not worry about my character build not being unique and interesting because I can always find a bunch of bobbleheads and beef up all my skills and stats to at least reasonably-competent levels.

      ‘course then I found the New Vegas Clinic, but at least that one was a money-sink.

  6. Chuck says:

    I really liked the crafting system, but I really like crafting systems in general. Since I mainly play video games to kill things and take stuff, crafting items from that stuff is a logical extension, I guess. And I really liked the reloading bench, but that’s probably just because I like guns so much. To each his own, of course.

    • Grag says:

      The reloading bench is excellent.

    • Captain2990 says:

      You would probably enjoy monster hunter 3 have you played it? because you basically just described the premise.

      • RejjeN says:

        Herp. Didn’t notice this comment JUST BELOW the comment I replied to. But yes, Monster Hunter 3(or Tri) is pretty good, though I haven’t had the chance to try the other games in the series (Wasn’t even aware of the series until some time before Tri, and I own no PSP)

    • Kavonde says:

      I played through as an Energy Weapons guy with Science my first time through, and I found the workbenches to be pretty handy (yay ammo!), but nothing special. This time around, I’m playing as a Guns guy with Repair, and wow, workbenches are a little more useful. And awesome.

    • Someone says:

      I thought the crafting system was interesting, but there were WAY too many resources to keep track of. Each bullet type required, what, at least 4 different kinds of crap? And some of it you couldn’t even find, you had to buy it from vendors. And what’s the difference between buying 50000 (ounces?) of lead to make fifteen 10 millimeter bullets and just buying fifteen 10 millimeter bullets? The latter doesn’t require keeping track of dozens of shell casings, primers and powders of different kinds, which clutter up the misc. section of your inventory at all times.

      • A Viewer says:

        I feel the intended primary purpose of the casings, primers, powders, etc. is to create variant ammo, like 10mm hollow point or .308 JSP ammo, or when caps are tight you can create a few regular rounds on the cheap. One thing I am annoyed about though is the inability to create some of the rarer forms of ammo, like .223, 12.7mm (pre-patch, but my 360 isn’t connected to Xbox Live), or 9mm +P.

  7. Even says:

    I thought that Survival was fairly useful in Hardcore mode for cooking food and increasing the health you get from them. Saves you from having to bother with traders and running back to base for resupply (unless you want to waste valuable companion cargo space). It also gives some incentive to hunt for food if you’re running low. Gecko and bighorner steaks were my main dish for majority of the game. Still, have to agree they could have really fleshed it out more.

    • psivamp says:

      Yeah, my Hardcore playthrough ended up with close to 100 Survival because I found it to be quite useful. It would have been better to be able to make a campfire so long as you had some minimum skill and something flammable.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      Hardly.I found so much food and drinks that I ended selling them because I couldnt get hungry fast enough.Plus,with increased survival,your needs rise slower,so you need even less of the food and water.I used campfire only for drugs,which require science to make,not survival.

      • Even says:

        Well my apporach to carrying food was simply quality over quantity to minimize the carry load, since I had a low strength character. I tried to keep around 5 of any food items and 5-8 bottles of water on me at any one time. Sure enough, food is not really that hard to come by, but trying to keep up with a supply of food that feeds you well and also heals moderately well, the crafted foodstuffs are really the best way to go. Some of them even give additional bonuses. For what its worth, it fit my playstyle. It never was my main skill to invest in, but having it around 50-60 was good enough to keep those steaks rolling in.

        Have to admit though that towards end-game it loses its meaning when you’ve become the God-Emperor of the Mojave Wasteland and with being the hoarder I am, my fridge ended up pretty bloated with the steaks.

    • BenD says:

      Gecko Kabobs. They restore food and water with minimal hit to radiation, and are lightweight. Get Survival to the point where you can make them, and you never need to make anything else! :D

  8. Grag says:

    I’m guilty of trying to get through quarry junction much earlier than I should have tried. Spent a lot of time sniping deathclaws by
    1) using vats to get a target lock
    (Note that they’re too far away to hit)
    2) exit vats, leaving the deathclaw still actually visible
    3) squeezing off a few rounds before they become invisible due to long range again.

    Also guilty of skipping Caravan. All I could think of when I tried to read the game rules weren’t “Why can’t this game just be like Pazaak? Pazaak was fun and I understood it.”

    • Someone says:

      Oh yeah, I tried to conquer QJ three times, at level 5, at level 15 and level 30. Only the last try was successful and even then the Matriarch was brutal.

      What’s interesting is that there is a Fat Man floating in an irradiated puddle not far from the Matriarch. I believe that was left for the sneaky players as a way to deal with the tenacious deathclaws.

  9. psivamp says:

    Am I the only person who actually learned how to play Caravan? The rules are completely retarded, but I figured out how to always win — I only did this on one run through because the economy is so broken though.

    What actually bothered me was that you could only win ~10k at each casino before they kick you out. That’s not chump change exactly, but it’s not breaking the bank either. I made a char with a natural 9 in Luck and all I got was ~35k measly caps?

    Edit: Apparently it’s only about 35k caps total. Thanks, Vault wiki.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      Nope,caravan was pretty easy for me too.I mean just get a bunch of 10s,9s and 7s,and youre guaranteed to win every single time.It lost its charm after that became obvious.

    • Gantidae says:

      Caravan made me all of my money. It was interesting in theory, but the rule were simplistic and the AI didn’t have the smarts to compete. Completely exploitable.

    • Halfling says:

      I played a lot of Caravan on my first play through. I have no idea why everyone finds it so baffling. I guess years of always being the DM and learning like 20 different pen and paper RPG rule-sets has made me immune to confusion when dealing with stupid and arbitrary systems.

      Anyway Caravan’s greatest sin is being way too easy for the player if he knows what he is doing. While I consider Pazzak an even worse game at least the comp had very good chances against me.

      • Vipermagi says:

        I think one big problem is that you may not pass on the first draw, but the game does allow you to. If you do, however, you are forced to dump all your cards one by one. I have no clue how that ever passed alpha, but there you have it. Had me utterly confused. I played four hands and always got, like, a three as my first card. That’s pretty crappy, so I’d toss it, and subsequently be forced to toss every card in my deck, automatically losing the game.

        On that note; did they fix that bug already?

        • BenD says:

          I doubt they’ve fixed any Caravan bugs. They haven’t fixed the one where this happens:

          Player has a sold caravan with a good value (say, 24-26)
          AI has a jack in hand and wants to mangle player’s sold caravan
          AI puts jack down on caravan opposite player’s sold caravan… his own
          Player’s caravan remains at awesome number while AI’s caravan loses a card

          This alone makes the game ridiculous.

        • Gantidae says:

          @Vipermagi

          But a 3 is not bad to start. In fact it’s a great start. You just build up instead of down.

  10. Sekundaari says:

    I think the Dart Gun, Deathclaw Gauntlet, Shishkebab and Bottlecap Mine were good craftable weapons, the Railway Rifle or the Rock-It Launcher not so much, though I never went with Big Guns as my only skill. Nuka Grenade was good, but those Quantums were rare.

    The firefight in the end was downright weird. I imagine a 14th century hand cannon would have resolved it quicker than those things.

    Wait, did Reginald actually hear Cobb’s name before asking about him, by name?

    Oh, and I’m glad to see the chaotic stupid evilness and pickpocketing starts again. Together with the constant training of Acrobatics, it feels familiar in a good way.

    • Hitch says:

      You know his name before he speaks. It’s right there when you mouse over him.

      What? You mean Reginald doesn’t have HUD-vision?

    • Andrew says:

      The Rock-it launcher was useful if big guns was your primary ranged-fighting skill, and you had enough strength to lug a million tons of junk around. Outside of that, yeah, basically just a fun-for-thirty-seconds gimmick weapon.
      The shishkebab and deathclaw gauntlet were easily the most powerful weapons in their respective classes, when combined with the right perks (pyro and crit-stacking, respectively).
      The dart gun I rarely used on anything but deathclaws, although its effectiveness in that one function still made it useful enough to carry around.
      The railway rifle was actually one of the better rifle-type weapons in the game, given liberal usage of VATS mode, and a few select perks. High crit rate, decent rate of fire, respectable damage (especially to limbs), and a fun choo-choo noise when you fired it! It wasn’t broken like Lincoln’s Repeater, but it had its niche.

      And yeah, both of the craftable explosives were ridiculously powerful, to the point where there was literally only a handful of enemies with enough hit points to justify their use.

      • Sekundaari says:

        The Dart gun was useful against Yao Guai too. Stupid bears on Jet…

        I guess I always got the Railway Rifle too late for it to be useful then. I would have the Xuanlong Assault Rifle for normal shooting, Lincoln’s Repeater for sniping, and the last or some Combat Shotgun for stealth criticals. I did carry other guns, like the Perforator and the Dart Gun, but the Railway Rifle felt a bit too heavy when I had the first three, and it was also harder to repair. Similar to one of the Sniper Rifles which I did carry for, well, sniping.

        • Vipermagi says:

          Yeah, if you only get the Railway when you have some of the best guns in the game, it kinda stinks :P

          Its terrible duration was the biggest turn-off for me. Eventually just modded it to triple or so.

          • Sekundaari says:

            Modded duration to triple…?

            Do you mean durability?

            • Vipermagi says:

              Herp. Yes, I did mean durability :)

              • Sekundaari says:

                Yeah. Anyway, the problem was that I’d pick up the XAR early, because I’d gain access to it during an early main quest (that everyone loved in season 2). Then, as I wouldn’t even have the schematics yet, the Railway Rifle would have mainly novelty value (lots, but still).

                Maybe I should try a more restricted playthrough at some point… Ooh, I know.

                1) Organize all the weapons to approximate order of effectiveness.
                2) Restrict the usage of better weapons to higher levels. Maybe 2nd level with the BB gun, rolling pins, pool cues and other random junk, 3rd with the Chinese, .32 pistol, nail boards, and so on. XAR, Lincoln’s Repeater and other unique goodies come very late.
                3) Mod for huge XP requirements.
                4) Feel like you’re playing vanilla Oblivion, waiting for the highest level before getting levelled quest rewards. Success.

          • Andrew says:

            If I was using it frequently, I’d usually keep an eye out for the material components, and just build extras for repair fodder as needed.
            Using crafted weapons tended to work best if you focused on the repair skill early, as it helped make up for how relatively tricky they were to maintain. I thought this worked out nicely, as all of the weapons you can build tended to look like something out of the doodles of a crazed inventor-type (strapping a flamethrower onto a sword, making sub-nuclear explosives out of common household ingredients and a fizzy drink, etc).

    • Halfling says:

      Josh totally jumps around because of too many online FPS.

      I for one usually train acrobatics for the first 10 minutes of every game before I realize I am not playing Morrowind.

  11. Vipermagi says:

    You can find two Caravan Shotguns in Primm. One is in the Bison Steve Hotesino, top floor. It’s in really bad shape, though. The other one is a random spawn, so it might not always appear. Also not 100% where exactly, but I think it was in one of the two shacks.

    Still, they’re not quite as good as a 100% repaired Sturdy version, so to speak.

    Also. *sigh* bunnyhopping. At least it looks smoother than during FO3, so it’s not as bad.

    Also also, I am totally not editing this while watching.
    You need like 8 strength to squash the bugs.

    Bloatflies are easier to kill in Fallout than in real life.

  12. Daemian Lucifer says:

    You punched that fly in the but,and in slow-mo no less!

    As for being good to the robot,why?You cant bone him,so why be nice to him?

    I played a melee character,and even with kick ass hammer and power armour,I still used plasma rifle for the deathclaws.

    Crafting is great for converting energy cells into other energy cells,and for overcharging them for maximum damage.As well as for brewing uber drugs(why use regular mentats,when party mentats are sooo much cooler).

    Bah,caravan is so easy.You can fix a deck so that you always win,no matter what.

    Oh,are you guys going to do dead money?

  13. Piflik says:

    You get NCR Infamy for killing Ringo, since Crimson Caravan is part of the NCR.

  14. Entropy says:

    Woo, come on Wild Card! Do it!

  15. Sydney says:

    The “Jump Street” joke would have been better suited to making fun of Josh’s…“gait”…in these games.

  16. Deadpool says:

    I like the soft rails. It was also a Fallout tradition, since 1 and 2 both had it (Super Mutant patrols in Fallout 1, Enclave patrols in Fallout 2, now Deathclaws and Cazadores in New Vegas).

    • Irridium says:

      Much better than invisible walls. Like the ones around the map. Seriously Obsidian? There are ways to justify keeping you contained to the general Vegas area, and you go with the most immersion breaking? Why not go with the desert route? Your surrounded by desert, so when you venture out very far, you start dieing due to the extreme heat(or cold, if you go at night). Maybe add in a thing about getting de-hydrated or something.

      Just… anything would be better than invisible walls.

  17. Nyctef says:

    I don’t understand all the Sunny Smiles hate. She just sounds like a normal person to me :|

    • Grag says:

      With the name “Sunny Smiles” she should be more like Moira Brown.

      • Alexander The 1st says:

        I’m sure her parents thought of that when they named her.

        Not everyone needs to stick to the conventions of their name.

        If you saw someone Chaotic Evil and named “Alexander” (For example), and he was slaughtering civilians in FO3:NV, you wouldn’t be going “But that’s supposed to be a defender of the mankind!” You’d think “Well, he’s Chaotic Evil. That’s what they do.”

        Sunny Smiles is probably True Neutral.

      • krellen says:

        Sunny Smiles is just her porn name.

    • Kavonde says:

      A normal person’s voice, when combined with Bethesda-style zoom-and-freeze dialogues, does not an interesting conversation make. If characters in this game behaved more naturally while speaking, she probably wouldn’t stand out. With the engine’s technical limitations/quirks, though, you need your VA’s to put some extra life into their performance so the players actually want to listen to the dialogue. Thus, “sounding like a normal person” = “awful voice acting.”

    • Someone says:

      I thought that Bethesda voice actors overacted, and Obsidian’s voicers underacted. I generally prefer underacting, as it suits the down-to-earth, no-pathos Fallout setting and feels more realistic, as the people I know tend to be droning and monotonous rather than emotional and overreacting.

  18. Patrick the Placated says:

    I mostly found the wall of deathclaws uneccessary. the map is huge and mostly empty towards the bottom left (or southwest if you rather) So if you don’t want the player making a route straight to Vegas (north), don’t drop them in the middle and expect them to go the south, then east, then north and then west. It’s pointless to make a counterclockwise route AWAY from the main city in the game. Even if you are chasing *****, why would he come this way? wouldnt he just go straight north? Once you leave the ‘tutorial town’ there arent any missions that bring you back, so having it in the middle of the map isnt an advantage so to speak.

    Basically, if you want to make the player wander around first, Start him off in the large and mostly empty southeast corner of the map and have him work his way straight north. It just makes more sense logistically.

    And the wall of deathclaws isnt something you realize is a wall until you die 4 times trying to go around the last one that killed you. The deathclaws are EXTREMELY fast in this version, running is not an option. Until you reach level 10ish, they are lethal.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      I disagree.Its much more natural to have an obstacle that is a tough monster that everyone just avoids.Whoever you ask,theyll just tell you only idiots would venture there.And if you are an idiot who doesnt listen to what people are talking,you deserve to be raped by deathclaws.We had this in the real world for a long time(and still do in some cases).There is a reason you follow the road and dont go through thick woods,especially on foot.Its just that modern society has made us so comfortable with having things safe all around us that we dont think avoiding natural dangers as a logical thing.

      Also,even at leve 20,those things are deadly.But thats what deathclaws should be,not the pushovers in fallout 3.

      • Patrick the Placated says:

        I liked the tough deathclaws. I didnt mind them at all. I was saying, that having 10 of them standing in a straight line, spaced equally apart so as to maintain line of sigtht with each other was an akward way of enforcing light rails. To be clear, I don’t mind rails. They are neccesary to any game ( to a point). These rails by comparison are what most designers should aim for.

        My point was that it would have been preferable in my opinion to simply start the player in a corner and have him play his way through the terrain instead of aound it. Remeber where the giant staue is down south by the outpost? how about the player starts there and heads north? Would have still had light rails, without the need for any deathclaw sodomization….

        The same light rail system could have been used rather than have 10 deathclaws inexplicably maintaining a blockade line in the middle of nowhere. Even if they had made the Deathclaws NCR soldiers instead, keeping a line to keep people away from New Vegas it would have made more sense than deathclaws.

        • Kelly says:

          Something tells me this chorus line thing was an odd quirk of how they spawned for you, rather than something explicitly placed in the game. I’ve literally run around to every single location in the game with the systematic use of Explorer and never saw anything of the sort in my wanderings.

          • Patrick the Remorseful says:

            South of Good Springs, just past the bottom of the road leading to Black Mountain, is junction 15 train station that for all my times playing through (three) I havent found a use for. At this train station the road kind of splits from north/south to east/west. Here’s a map:
            ( http://fallout.wikia.com/wiki/Fallout:_New_Vegas_map )
            Now on that road going east to west by the train station, stretched between Whitaker Farmstead and REPCON Heaquarters are about 12-14 deathclaws on the southern side of the road, within sight of each other and the road. Further west by the Great Khan makeshift camp is an area pretty much infested with Cazadores.
            So no it isn’t a literal ‘chorus line’ but it is a very left-handed way of denying access to the north. In the first 2 installments, deathclaws mostly lived in caves. Here they will apparently take up sentry poitions along an otherwise empty and useless stretch of road. It isn’t a TERRIBLE way of enforcing rails, it just could have been done better.

            • Kelly says:

              In 1 you saw them exactly once, in the Boneyard ruins. In 2, they and many other powerful creatures were random encounters in the southern areas, just out in the wastes. Meat Gates essentially (and as in New Vegas, entirely passable for those honestly willing to take the risk).

              Indeed, I’d say that New Vegas is BETTER than 2 in this regard because it WARNS you repeatedly that these areas are infested with dangerous monsters, whereas in 2 if you decide you don’t want to follow directions and wander off in ignorance, BAM Fire Geckos, Deathclaws, Aliens, Nightkin remnants, you name it, it will try to murder you.

              I must echo the general sentiment that it makes SENSE that avoiding the specific path of progression should carry risks for those wishing to take it, especially when the game TELLS you that the dangers are present in the area but doesn’t say you CAN’T take that route if you’re really willing to risk it.

              On the other hand, most things off the beaten path in New Vegas aren’t very interesting anyway (oh boy, a cave with a dead guy and some monsters!), with most flavor being confined to the populated areas the game guides you to (and some that it doesn’t), so maybe this is the wrong argument to be having entirely.

      • Michael says:

        Wait… the deathclaws should be deadly at level 20? Did you even play the first two games?

        They’re actually weaker than they are in Fallout 3.

        At least they could damage you in 3; in 1 and 2 they were just big damage sponges. If you blind them (by shooting them in the eyes, which also often does x2-x5 damage) they were effectually useless.

        Also rendered useless if you have a companion. They seem to go for your companion first, regardless of how much damage you’re dealing.

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          Well it was long time ago that Ive played the first two games.Though you were a damage dispensing god after some time,so combat wasnt that big of a deal.

          As for them going for your companions first,thats actually a bad thing with hardcore on.Which is why Id usually go with boone against them,instead of veronica.

      • Shamus says:

        “And if you are an idiot who doesnt listen to what people are talking,you deserve to be raped by deathclaws.”

        What the hell Daemian?

        Are you suddenly new here or something? Idiot? Rape? If you weren’t a regular I would have nuked this comment. Straighten up.

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          Sorry about the idiot part,maybe that was a bit rash.

          But raped by monsters?Come on,thats a common enough term for when you get stomped by something way above your level.You never had a policy against brutal images painted by metaphors.

          • X2-Eliah says:

            There’s a difference between a metaphor and crude obscenity. Just because it exists doesn’t mean you have to use it, you know.
            Especially since the aggressive tone of your post does kinda imply the non-metaphorical meaning of the ‘metaphor’.

    • acronix says:

      The solution is obvious: atomize them from orbit!

      Or use a ballistic fist.

    • BenD says:

      Benny probably goes around because he doesn’t want to be eaten alive by deathclaws. XD Even the NCR and caravan routes have altered their paths to avoid I-15’s deathclaw problem. It’s not fun for the player who wants to sandbox, but it is at least consistent in-game.

    • PurePareidolia says:

      What I want to know, is why you still ask about Benny and Co everywhere you go, when it’s so obvious they’re from New Vegas. The checkered suit, the gambling allusions, the fact the game is called New Vegas. Gee, I wonder where the important plot points are going to happen? Better go ask all around the southern half of the map.

  19. Jokerman89 says:

    I tried like 3 different routes to try and get a shortcut to Vegas on my 2nd playthrough. Everytime there was something that would kick my ass.

    Cazador’s. deathclaws and Super mutants to be exact, I got there in the end by jumping on some rocks where nobody could get me the straight running for vegas with a few deathclaws and Mutants behind me, ignoring each other trying to kill me. Deathclaws are damn fast and i had to outsmart the AI i few times but i got there in the end :D

  20. Hitch says:

    I played the last quest last night to be sure I got it out of the way before this series got there. (Like there was any hurry.) Shamus, if you haven’t done it yet…

    …you’re not really missing anything. It’s as anti-climactic as possible.

  21. Starwars says:

    I loved that they put some of the toughest bastards in the game so close to the starting point. Like someone said, it’s entirely possible to make it through there early on if you wish, it’s just that you can’t run basically wherever you want like in Fallout 3. Much more fun this way I think.

    And Survival is certainly a highly useful skill. I believe the best healing item in the game is a food item, if you have high Survival (the bonuses get better the higher Survival you have). Plus there are some great buffing items as well. I can see how the collecting isn’t a gameplay element for everyone though but really. All skills in this game are disposable, you don’t need a weapon skill, you don’t need speech, you don’t need lockpicking, stealth, medicine, science etc etc etc. I also loved how they re-introduced the ammo system and introduced weapon mods.

    Caravan is a fun card game I think (and come on guys, it’s not that complicated). But it’s severely broken in the game since the AI just isn’t up to speed. It’s way too easy to abuse it unfortunately.

    EDIT: I also think it’s a shame to call the Powder Ganger choice stupid. It may be so when viewed from the comfort of our computer chairs but Fallout has always been about roleplaying, the type of game where you can create a character concept and act it out in the game because the game has choices enough to cover all sides. It’s not like ME2 where you’re forced into stupid situations without any choice. A game like this leaves the choice up to you. I would never support the Legion for example, and I think their overall plan is stupid. That doesn’t keep me from designing a character that *would* find joining them appealing.

    • Chris B Chikin says:

      I assume when you’re saying Fallout allows for more roleplaying than Mass Effect 2 you’re excluding Fallout 3. Otherwise good luck trying to think up justification for why any evil character would follow the Broken Steel storyline. After all…

      “You are not a mercenary.”

    • Vipermagi says:

      I don’t see how roleplaying a stupid choice makes it less stupid. It just means the character you’re roleplaying isn’t very bright either.

      • Starwars says:

        I’m definitely excluding Fallout 3, yes.

        Vipermagi, and that’s kind of the point. The game at least gives the option of playing a brutish thug (or in my case, a rather stupid Tribal type of character). It’s about freedom to create a character and rolling with it. Or hell, if you’re a total psychopath, the game allows you to wipe out both Goodsprings and the Powder Gangers if you’re so inclined.

        Gist is perhaps this, yes, it might not be the most intelligent choice (and we’ll see more of choices of varying intelligence in the main quest as well). That doesn’t mean that the choice shouldn’t be there.

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          “The game at least gives the option of playing a brutish thug”

          And unlike fallout 3,it is fun again to play a dumb guy bumbling around the world.

          • acronix says:

            I tried playing with a single point in intelligence once. I only noticed some grammar changes on a (I`d say small) number of dialogue choices. After getting to Nipton, I decided it wasn`t different enough to be worth it, and rerolled a genius.

            • Starwars says:

              Yeah, the game does have the whole “miss the point” thing when you don’t make skill-checks, but unfortunately no full low INT dialogue like the older games and Arcanum. A shame.

            • Daemian Lucifer says:

              Ahh,you missed the plant thing and arcade gannon taking pity on your stupidity.

              • Starwars says:

                Nah, I know there are occasional lines like that (my fav is when the Followers Doctor in the medical clinic recommends the INT implant for you) but it was a bit more elaborate in the older games. :)
                Which one was the plant one though?

                Or like in Arcanum where your entire goddamned journal was stupid, that was great.

                • Daemian Lucifer says:

                  Oh sure,I too miss the random grunts of the older games,but this is still an improvement over what you get in fallout 3.The plant was the one with the doctor you just mentioned(“so you sell plants?”)

            • Someone says:

              I still think they just didn’t have a chance to properly develop the feature.

              There is a lot of this in FONV. You see these loose threads all over the place, you see a feature or a location and realize that the developers probably had great plans for it, but couldn’t see them through.

        • Vipermagi says:

          Ah, I see now. I can agree on that :)

          My first playthrough was a ‘vanquish’ run; kill everything you find (after you get what you need off them). I failed more quests than I started, let alone completed. Also the only character with which I completed the main quest. Quite enjoyable.

  22. Jennifer Snow says:

    Two things:

    1.) the credits sequence you did is so awesome that I’ve watched it all the way through both times thus far. Kudos to Kevin Macleod of the clan Macleod for making it awesome.

    2.) JOSH STOP HOPPING EVERYWHERE LIKE YOU’RE SOME KIND OF DERANGED JACKRABBIT ON SPEED OMG.

  23. Gantidae says:

    This goes to show you can’t please everybody.

    Monsters scaling so you can go anywhere any time you want? That’s terrible because you never feel like you’ve grown as a character. You can just about kill anything you encounter, and you end up with bandits on the road with high end weapons.

    Complete railroading with the complete inability to go where you want when you want? That’s terrible because we need the freedom to explore.

    True freedom to do what you want when you want? Well, now I have no direction. The game just feels like nothing is happening and pointless.

    A world where there are opponents that are very tough at any point and almost impossible early on? You’ve taken away some of my freedom again, and really wanted to go exactly where you put those tough opponents.

    No matter how a game is set up you will find those that don’t like it and those that do. There are positive points to all the above listed negative points also. Some people will even argue against a set up one breath after arguing against a set up that goes in the opposite direction. They’ll complain about the rails in one game then the openness in the next.

    Fallout: New Vegas delivered exactly what everybody said they wanted when they were playing Oblivion. A world that is open but with monsters that don’t scale or at the very least scale only mildly.

    • Alexander The 1st says:

      The last option, I would argue, is the best option possible.

      It’s the difference between railroad tracks that are 30 cm tall versus railroad tracks that are 10 m tall. Yes, I’m more than likely to stay on the 30 cm tall railroad tracks, but if I try hard enough, I can very much indeed jump from rail to rail, grinding like Tony Hawk.

      The 10 meter one? Only if I act like Josh or walljump a lot.

      • Jennifer Snow says:

        I like the way the first two Gothic games did it. The mobs do not scale (oh god, do they ever not scale, just about everything kills you with one solid chomp early in the game), but they put the really tough mobs in dead-ends and cul-de-sacs or blocking routes to later plot areas where you’re not too likely to encounter them in your initial explorations–and those same mobs add an element of risk to your exploratory forays, so you actually come to fear the night and the deep forest when you can’t see where you’re going.

        Also, there are ways to cheese out these mobs much of the time, and it doesn’t *break* anything if you DO manage to get past them early on. The game feels very free, there’s tons of stuff to explore, but it also feels dangerous and there’s a very real sense of progression even when you do something as minor as upgrade from a 15 damage weapon to a 17 damage weapon.

        • Someone says:

          Oh yes, I still remember that time when Lester escorted me to the swamp camp as a rare example of an escort quest where THE NPC was escorting ME and not the other way around. And not in a stupid way, like Liberty Prime at the end of FO3, but in a way that actually left me grateful because the monsters he killed left valuable trophies which were the only way to make some cash early on.

  24. McLokast says:

    Oh god the dog eyes!

    I still have that glitch… late at night it haunts me…

  25. Alexander The 1st says:

    Oh hey, since you have the awesome shotgun, you should try taking on the Deathclaws!

  26. BenD says:

    o/~ Little Reginald Foo-Foo, hopping through the wasteland
    hopping to the geckos, and shooting ’em in the head o/~

    Also, I think it’s seven geckos.

  27. X2-Eliah says:

    Also, who else felt regret when shooting the Geckos when they (when hit) curled up and hid their head between their hands? SO CUTE.

    • BenD says:

      Yeah, that really bothered me. It makes me mad that there’s such a high charisma requirement for Animal Friend (I don’t see how what we call “charisma,” applicable only to human society, is even related to being an animal person, frankly) because shooting geckos is kind of agonizing.

      • Someone says:

        I remember the first time I ran into fire geckos: “come here you snuggly-wuggly AH SHIT, NO, FIRE, NO, AAAHH!”.

      • Daemian Lucifer says:

        “(I don’t see how what we call “charisma,” applicable only to human society, is even related to being an animal person, frankly)”

        Charisma comes from many things,like posture,body language and such.Those things animals can understand.And one can argue that as charisma rises,first few levels improve on your looks and your speech,and later levels focus on how you present yourself before you even say anything.

        • Josh says:

          I’ve had an intense hatred of Geckos ever since I first played Fallout 2 and they pitted me against a bunch of them with only a friggen spear. On my small-frame low strength high perception character.

          • Kelly says:

            Always sequence break in 2. ALWAYS.

            The Geckos will be helpless against your level 7 tribesman in Advanced Power Armor with a Pulse Pistol.

          • SpammyV says:

            That is one of the things that I hated about FO2, is that I usually go with a high Perception Small Guns build, and it felt like forever until I got a real gun. Pipe gun doesn’t. Count.

            • Andrew says:

              When playing a small guns character, it was usually prudent to rush to the Den, grab a decent weapon there, then come back and do everything. There were a few options for obtaining a firearm in that area- the simplest method I can recall was just killing Tubby, that merchant nobody liked, and helping yourself to his stock.

              • Someone says:

                The simplest method is signing up with Metzger’s crew, letting them do all the dirty work and then gathering the trophies, but that’s evil and you get a tacky tattoo for the rest of the game.

                I think the best way to get to some decent firearms in one piece is to take Sulik and let him crush your enemies.

  28. Bender says:

    Hey baby, wanna kill all humans?

  29. Kibbin says:

    Finally Reginald Cuftburt (?) is back with alcohol and simply taking a job off the first person he approaches instead of all that namby pamby talking to people stuff.

    P.S can you please show us Felica Day’s character. I’m unlikely to get the game myself and wonder what she’s like, I don’t expect you to recruit her, don’t want nobody cramping Reginald’s style ;)

  30. M says:

    There’s a really cool mod for New Vegas I found, which puts a bonnet on your gravestone. Can’t find the link, but it’s at the Nexus.

  31. Mailbox says:

    I too have never sided with the powder gangers at the start. However if you ignore the quest in Goodsprings to fight them off the Powder Gangars do remain nuetral at the NCRCF. There are a couple on the roads between Sloan and Primm that are hostile for whatever reason, but killing them does not gain you infamy with them.
    Josh’s jumping did immediately make me think he was trying to level up his acrobatics and I thought for a second that there would be a choir like chime that would indicate he had succeeded.
    Cass is a great character. “Whoa! Why are you leaning in all of a sudden?”
    Hooray for forth wall jokes.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      “Josh’s jumping did immediately make me think he was trying to level up his acrobatics”

      Glad Im not the only one.

    • Starwars says:

      Actually, in my experience killing those hostile Powder Gangers between Goodsprings and the NCRCF *do* wreck your reputation. Perhaps it was changed in the patch, I know it was the case on my latest playthrough.

      I think it’s a bit annoying but I also kinda like that I have to use sneaking or a disguise for that particular part.

      • Mailbox says:

        I’m gonna say this Powder Ganger phenomena is biting me in the ass. Cause to double check I took a new character and ran down the road and killed one hostile PG enemy and immediately went from neutral to vilified. So I’m gonna call this a bug and leave it at that.

  32. Will says:

    You guys hate Caravan?

    All my friends who have played Caravan enjoyed it. Most of them regularly play it at school. Its become as natural and common as Black Jack to us. Hell, we even had a small tournament of Caravan at my comic book shop a month ago.

    Just surprising to hear some people hate it so much.

    • acronix says:

      I think the reason is that it`s very easy to make the “win-all” deck, filled with 7s, 9s, and 10s. (in case you don`t want to know how to break it). There`s also the fact that the comp doesn`t use the face cards on the player, so there`s no reason to ever use anything but those few cards in your deck. Because of the aim of this particular strategy, it`s particularly weak to kings (and maybe queens?).

  33. burningdragoon says:

    Funny thin happened doing the Gecko quest for me. Sunny Smiles got caught running in place because the dog was standing in her way. Sat there for several minutes just watching and wishing I could easily capture that moment.

  34. Jokerman89 says:

    Im gonna stick up for Sunny Smiles here and say you missed the greatness of her voice acting.

  35. brashieel says:

    Ah, Spoiler Warning returns to Fallout games. I’m looking forward to the chaotic stupid shenanigans and hopefully some pants exploding.

    Bonus points if the whole thing is murderously angry by the end.

  36. Ramsus says:

    It’s really weird how little your choice for Goodsprings matters. Either way you side you’re just picking which NPCs are there later and if the town, but not the actual people in it, hates you. In my playthrough I sided with the Powder Gangers in Goodsprings and then against the other group later and over the next thousand times or so I visited (I used a crate outside of the store as my storage space for the whole game, yes one of those ones you can walk into and send flying off into the horizon on accident) the ones in Goodsprings never seemed to notice/care I had basically killed everyone else on their side.

  37. Johan says:

    Wow Josh, you are rolling with that rifle there. I was never good at ironsighting most of the rifles, for the same reason that Yatzee mentioned in his review, it looks like aiming down a brick.

    The campfires aren’t just crafting for food, you can also make poisons I think.

    Not that I know, I’ve never had Survival above 20

    Also, wow, no one did any crafting? I was turning ALL my microfusion cells into Overcharge and Max Charge cells (which are really really awesome, but degrade your gun like no other)

    The “recipes” for regular arms are pretty weak though.

    • Johan says:

      Ooh ooh, one last thing. The Deathclaw Congo Line would bother me in retrospect once I actually made it to Vegas.

      Ostentatiously, your find yourself in the position at the beginning of the game because you were delivering the package to Vegas, but why the hell were you taking that route if it was filled with god damned Deathclaws? The only way is if it is SO recent that word hasn’t reached Primm (or any other town you might have stopped through on your way from wherever point A was to point Vegas), but when you talk to the miners at the opposite end of Deathclaw City, if memory serves they say the Deathclaws appeared because mining stopped, and mining stopped because the Powder Gangers rose up and killed their overseers.

      And yet the Powder Gangers seem quite well set up, at least well enough to have started raiding merchants and towns, and long enough for the NCR to decide to do something about them. If you side with the powder gangers, a quest you can receive from their boss in the Corrections Facility is to find out what the NCR is planning, you can find out that they are planning a raid on the facility (and also doublecross the gangers and side with the NCR troops).

      So if there has been plenty of time for the powder gangers to do all this, then it must have been a few months at least since mining stopped (in my mind), and I seem to recall that the miners said the Deathclaws moved in very soon after this. Which means that either:
      -You are the most badass/desperate courier in the Mojave, as you were willing to brave Deathclaw City to deliver the package
      -Word about a whole nest of Deathclaws travels at a snail’s pace.

      Finally, Deathclaws to me seemed to get an ENORMOUS power boost from Fallout 1/2 to Fallout 3, and now again to New Vegas. I never had a problem with them in 1 if I recall correctly, I found them after I had received a really awesome Sniper Rifle from the Brotherhood (I think it was 7 AP for an aimed shot, totally worth it), and I just aimed for the eyes, I could start combat from far enough away that I would have plenty of shots, and with my >100 small guns score, I always hit (pretty much). Of course combat in 1 and 2 was brutal at the best of times, but it does seem that relative to the rest of the games, Deathclaws have only gotten more powerful.

      • guy says:

        Yeah, well, my memories of deathclaws are more along the lines of desperately pumping combat shotgun shells into their eyes and praying I could kill it before it closed to melee range and tore me in half. Then I went after the deathclaw queen with the fanciest gear in the game and very narrowly took her down with the aid of ~20 stimpacks.

        So really, it depended very heavily on your build.

        • Johan says:

          Yes, but the thing is that basically all of Fallout 1/2 combat was like that. You played really the entire game on the razor’s edge between victory and defeat, a few bad rolls and even mooks could mess up your game. But relative to the rest of the (brutal) game, Deathclaws were very much in line with the difficulty, they were a step up in difficulty, rather than an enormous leap ala Fallout 3 and New Vegas

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      You can make poisons,but theres no need for using them.And really,was there any need for the player to use poisons in any game?Its always something that hurts the player,but never help them hurt the enemies in return.

      Well ok,it is useful in tbs games.

      • Mumbles says:

        Poison apples in Oblivion made for pretty hilarious gags, not gunna lie. My favorite moment of all time was when I broke into the barracks, threw a bunch of poison apples everywhere and then ran outside. I payed a trespassing fee as I saw the officer I wanted to kill drop dead and then went on my merry way.

  38. SimeSublime says:

    I noticed you guys praised the weapon modding. I’m partially in agreement with you, it was fun to do. Problem was there were never enough of them. In the entire game I think I found two, three mods at most for guns I was using.

    • X2-Eliah says:

      Most guns only have two-three mods; the guns that carry 3+ mods are very, very rare/specific.

    • Someone says:

      I only ever found the mods for a wrong weapon class on sale. Every bloody time this happened.

      When I was playing a gunslinger, useless mods for energy weapons and heavy weaponry were everywhere, I only got about 5-6 mods for small arms, 3 of which were for the guns I never used. Of course, come my heavy weapons playthrough the small arms mods were everywhere and the ones for heavy weapons disappeared off the face of the earth.

  39. Dante says:

    So much anger in the comments, can’t we all just get along?

  40. wtrmute says:

    Josh,

    “This breaks with a pretty honored Fallout tradition” of not using real towns in the map? I guess San Francisco must be a desert mirage, then, because I recall going there in Fallout 2…

    ;-)

  41. JPH says:

    So Mumbles mentioned Ringo, John and Paul… Am I the only one who’s saddened by the fact that she didn’t mention George? He’s my favorite Beatle!

  42. Beep says:

    @your comment attached to the episode, Shamus–

    I actually made it to New Vegas by heading directly north yesterday night on a character I just started, a sciency/sneaky type. Getting past the stretch immediately surrounding and extending somewhat to the north of Quarry Junction is by far the hardest part, but judicious use of my solitary Stealth Boy and a relatively high Sneak (well, high for level 3) got me thru OK. Past the Junction, the available terrain for sneakin’ about increases, and dodging the deathclaws gets easier.

    Mind you, if you don’t play a sneak build, I’ve got no clue what you’d do in that situation.

Leave a Reply

Comments are moderated and may not be posted immediately. Required fields are marked *

*
*

Thanks for joining the discussion. Be nice, don't post angry, and enjoy yourself. This is supposed to be fun.

You can enclose spoilers in <strike> tags like so:
<strike>Darth Vader is Luke's father!</strike>

You can make things italics like this:
Can you imagine having Darth Vader as your <i>father</i>?

You can make things bold like this:
I'm <b>very</b> glad Darth Vader isn't my father.

You can make links like this:
I'm reading about <a href="http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Darth_Vader">Darth Vader</a> on Wikipedia!

You can quote someone like this:
Darth Vader said <blockquote>Luke, I am your father.</blockquote>