Spoiler Warning S5E16: Ave, True to Cuftburt

By Shamus
on May 13, 2011
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning

166 comments


Link (YouTube)

I talk a lot about idealism vs. pragmatism, and I think the NCR vs. Ky-SAR’s Legion would have been a great place to do this. Have the NCR dedicated to the ideals of democracy and bureaucracy to a fault. “Oh, your town is being raided nightly by fiends? We’ll table a motion at the next meeting to form a fiend oversight sub-committee and investigate possible solutions to this fiend issue.” At the other extreme would be the Legion. “The fiends are going to wipe you out. Pledge to pay us exorbitant taxes, and we will place your town under the protection of the Legion. We might need to take some of the men to serve in the legion and a few of the women for other stuff. Basically, sell yourselves to us, and we’ll see to it you survive.”

The game came close to this, but the Legion is just a bit too buffoonish to be a proper foil. They aren’t just callous. They’re bloodthirsty, incompetent, short-sighted, and ignorant.

And they dress like clowns.

Enjoyed this post? Please share!

Footnotes:


A Hundred!2020206Many comments. 166, if you're a stickler

From the Archives:

  1. Joey says:

    The video is marked private… why?

  2. acronix says:

    I was annoyed by Caesar`s Legion design. They are the obvious “neccesary evil side” with no redeeming qualities except that they are better at protection than the NCR is (which is sort of a big issue, really). But it`s hard to sympathize with them in any way… unless you like fancy and correct latin pronunciation, I guess?

    • James says:

      i Liked the Idea of a faction based on Ancient Rome, the whole Legion thing is really cool and interesting, but the Legion does seam a bit to evil. sure have them as bad guy slavers, but don’t make them insane. on a parallel with ancient governments this is like Rome vs Greece (not exactly like it but obvious enough i noticed it) Democracy vs Oligarchy. all we need now is a Governor or something of the NCR to be called Leonidas. or change Kimball to Agamemnon.

      Romanes eunt Domus (thank god for google)
      The People Called Romans they Go the House

      • Chris B Chikin says:

        [Don’t tempt me to quote that whole sketch here!]

        • James says:

          lays down obvious bait

          ” All ways Look on the Bright Side of Life ”

          Life’s a piece of shit when you look at it
          Life’s a laugh and deaths a joke its true
          you’ll see it all a show
          keep them laughing as you go
          remember that the last laugh is on you

          Annnnnnnnnnnd

      • AyeGill says:

        On the other hand, if there’s an NCR governor called Leonidas, nobody will ever side with anyone but the NCR

    • Phoenix says:

      Yeah, unfortunately they don’t appeal very much. I suppose there are people that likes them anyway. Initially I was undecided then I saw too many crucifixions and mad things. Legion’s women are comically overburdened, it was an amazing sight! That’s perhaps a mistake, perhaps not. They look fools even compared to other factions (Khans, Bombers).
      Only for those who finished the game:
      Anyway I accidentally won with the indipendend vitory, “betraying” NCR at the last moment, having killed House and upgraded his bots. I wasn’t thinking of using the bots in that way, I even evaded some NCR guards to do a quest using cloack to have not to kill them. But the game didn’t give me a choice at that point. Well, I guess I could be better than NCR since I resolved far more problems than them :)

    • Zukhramm says:

      As big of a deal that is (that’s why I couldn’t play Rome: Total War), not even correct Latin pronunciation can make me side with the Legion.

    • Chris B Chikin says:

      This episode is Josh’s karma for the survival streak last episode.

      I was really excited when I first heard about Caesar’s Legion. I’m studying Roman law as part of my degree and I’m really fascinated by Roman culture and such. Really, if I could pick a year to be born in it would be a really hard toss-up between the late 1940s (so I could be a teenager in the 60s) and pretty much any time in the late Roman republic/early empire.

      So for me, the idea of getting to play as Romans with laserguns was, like, the greatest thing I could imagine in the game. I wanted to be muthafuckin’ Marcus Aurelius in the muthafuckin’ twenty-third century. I wanted to lead my legions out across the wasteland and bring civilization to the barbaric New-Vegan tribes. I wanted to see scholars and scientists (toga’s optional) on the cutting edge of technology, law and philosophy. But what did we get?

      A bunch of evil-stupid assholes cosplaying as Romans by wearing hockey pads, who were probably written by someone whose only knowledge of Roman history came from the time that he maybe, just maybe, saw the first thirty seconds of Gladiator.

      Maybe.

      • ? says:

        Found in ancient history book owned by Ceasar:

        “Julius Ceasar is one of greatest military commanders known to history. Under his command [20 pages missing] hordes of Huns burned to the ground every human settlement in their way.”

        Only in game he is supposed to be educated by Followers, so it is unlikely that he got his facts wrong. What a shame…

        • Chris B Chikin says:

          That’s just it though; I can’t make sense of how you could base your society on the Romans and make such a meal of it.

          I get the reasoning behind it. You want to rebuild civilisation but you’re not really sure how to go about it. In those circumstances it would make sense to base your society on one of the greatest civilisations that ever existed. But in order to know that the Romans were that great civilisation you’d have to know a lot about them; know enough that you wouldn’t be making the sort of mistakes evident in Caesar’s Legion.

          For one thing, the Romans did not generally mistreat their slaves. Aside from anything else, slaves were bloody expensive and, as the law developed, a lot more rules started popping up about how you could treat them.

          And that’s a major point that the designers here missed and which anyone who knew enough about the Romans to really want to base a society on them would know: The Romans weren’t just the best because of their military strength. They were the best because they had one of the most advanced legal systems in the world. It’s so advanced that it’s still the basis of most legal systems in Europe, as well as the US, South Africa and even Japan. Their philosophy and their technology too were just as important in making them great. A person who realistically wanted to recreate Rome would know these things and want to emulate them too.

          If all Caesar (or whoever founded the Legion) knew about the Romans was that they had a good army then he would’ve gone “Meh,” and turned the page to read about Hitler. It’s the rest of their society that made Rome great, and which would make someone want to recreate it. The fact that none of that was there kind of turned Caesar’s Legion into a Little Lamplight scenario for me. It just didn’t make sense!

          • Daemian Lucifer says:

            If you think of ceasar as a neo-nazi who likes roman outfits,it makes much more sense.He is basically hitler,only with a different fetish.

          • Bobby Archer says:

            While I agree that Rome was made great by their legal, philosophical, and technological advances, they also had the greatest army of their era (or a number of other eras). It isn’t the hardest thing to think that someone could read “one of the largest empires the world has ever seen” and “unparalleled army” and ignore any parts in between that he thought were unnecessary.

            • Chris B Chikin says:

              Yeah, but if you’re just going on pure military strength for the basis of the society you’re ripping off then there’s plenty of others who would be just as good – Ghengis Khan, Alexander the Great, Adolf Hitler and the British Empire, to name a few. What distinguishes Rome from the others is the non-military details.

              What I’m trying to say is that, unless they were aware of these details as well, I find it hard to believe that a person would fall so much in love with Roman culture that they would base their society on it. So I have to assume Caesar was aware of these details, or he’d have just as likely decked out his troops in red coats and pith helmets, but if he knew about these details then why aren’t they there?

    • Hitch says:

      can’t really add much to this conversation. Everyone seems to be saying the same thing I felt. It would have been nice if anyone in the game presented a positive case for the Legion. I guess Raul does a bit, but he seems to say anything he thinks you might want to hear and contradicts himself so much I can’t believe he means anything he says. I mean someone in the Legion that makes it sound like a good idea.

    • Khizan says:

      I like the Legion. They’re a brutal organiztion, but it is a brutal time.

      Citizenship in the Legion trades freedom for security. It may not seem like the best deal to us now, but in the Mojave Wasteland, we maight thing differently. Caravans are burned out and the drivers killed to maintain a business advantage. The Khans roamed and the Fiends will capture your women and children and cook them alive, or maybe rape them to death, or maybe both. And the NCR says “We’ve got a whole fort full of soldiers here, but we can’t do anything about it! Sorry dudes, but some dude with a golf club just massacres us when we try!”

      That doesn’t happen on the Legion’s watch. The Legion would not tolerate that shit, and it would put it down decisively, and pretty much everybody you talk to admits it. They don’t like it, they hate the Legion as a pack of filthy slavers… but Legion territory is safe and they admit it. Caravans travel freely and there are no Fiends or Khans or the like. Provided you live by their rules, you are safe.

      I can see a lot of people being willing to make that trade and being grateful for the chance. After enough time under Legion rule I can see them getting disappointed, though that may change if Caesar lives and takes New Vegas.

      I’m not entirely pleased with how they treated the Legion. A bit less emphasis on slavery and women would have been nice and made them far more sympathetic, but I like the idea of the barbarian Legion in barbaric times.

      • Bret says:

        You avoid raiders by being ruled by some of the worst of the lot.

        It’s like avoiding Athlete’s foot by chopping off your legs. Sure, it works, but…

    • Yeah! What have The Legion ever done for us?

    • Eric says:

      The thing about the Legion, for me, is that the idea has so much potential that is never fully capitalised on. They desperately needed some more likeable and sympathetic characters, but everyone in the game we see on their side is a vicious, misanthropic asshole, with the exception of Caesar himself, who still comes across as under-developed.

      I have to wonder if it’s a case where they just didn’t have the time, or alternately, felt that they needed to have a more obvious villain in the game or else the mass market would be confused about who to point their guns at. The ideas of good and evil are easy to understand, and compelling for players – you’re either a “good guy” or a “bad guy”, and for many, choosing between one is basically what role-playing and choice are about in these sorts of games. For anyone looking for something more substantial, though, New Vegas kind of falls flat on its face.

      The Legion is nuanced enough and certainly has the depth there if you want it, but its organisation makes little sense and it’s illogical that the whole thing hasn’t degenerated back into warring tribes. Stripping the lives, the culture from people, and unifying them is a damn hard task, especially in only a couple of decades. This is like the same problem some have with tribals in the Fallout universe: in a world with latent technology and communication, it just doesn’t make much sense for people to devolve to the point where they start worshiping ghosts, spirits and live in huts. The world has gone to shit, and life is hard, but unless you’re talking about extremely small, isolated groups of people with absolutely no contact with the outside world, no technology, no education, no means to reproduce technology… I mean, what, did the nukes make people stupid too? Same thing applies to the Legion: it just doesn’t make sense that a huge band of tribes could be united as it is over such a short time span, and literally under nothing but fear, where 50% of the population is horribly repressed. That’s not grounds for a great army, that’s grounds for mass rebellion and chaos.

      To Obsidian’s credit, it’s implied that life in the Legion is much better beyond the front lines. Apparently the slaves and whatnot are treated poorly for the purpose of breaking them and indoctrinating them into the ways of the Legion, not just out of petty cruelty. But when all you see are scores of crucified people, women horribly abused, and the GODDAMN SKY TURNS RED ANYWHERE NEAR THEM, it’s really hard to maintain a sympathetic point of view.

      • Johan says:

        On the other hand, the background music that plays when you’re in Legion territory (like at the Fort) is better than what plays when you’re in NCR territory (like the Dam). I do like their theme music, I might join just for that.

        • Eric says:

          You realise that the “Legion theme” is the Boneyard theme from Fallout 1, right? Specifically, it’s called City of Lost Angels on the soundtrack.

          Yeah, pretty much all the good music in New Vegas is reused.

    • Lance says:

      I found their other issue was that you had to live with the NCR. The Legion are a few camps here and there and a big fort across the river that you can completely avoid with no trouble at all. The NCR are patrolling the wasteland, they’re in the towns, they’re all over the Strip. So if you piss them off, you have to deal with them. You can piss off the Legion and forget they exist.

      • Chuck says:

        That’s one thing to keep in mind concerning the Legion: most of what we know of them comes from their leaders, their enemies, and their victims. Very little of their true, settled society is revealed to us, because most of it is in Arizona and the eastern southwest.

    • Ronixis says:

      If you like fancy and correct Latin pronunciation, you’d be much better off recruiting Arcade.

  3. Alexander The 1st says:

    Okay, that was worth it. Ballistic Fists look REALLY awesome.

    And finally, Josh is using a weapon he actually has skills in.

    EDIT: 14 minutes in…Nevermind…

  4. Klay F. says:

    All thats happening in my brain right now is blind rage at how easily (more or less) Josh killed Caesar compared to how hard a time I had.

    I eventually resorted to using a Holy Frag Grenade, but I couldn’t find a position to use it where I didn’t kill myself with it.

    I finally just gave up and went a bought the mini nuke launcher. I popped into the tent, shot one off, almost killed myself in the process, and fled. It still didn’t kill those damn bodyguards though, so I had to Benny Hill my way around Caesar’s Tent to kill them all.

    • Johan says:

      Yeah, Caesar’s tent can be either impossibly brutal or hilariously easy, my first time through I was sneak/small guns, and of course it’s impossible to get any sneak attacks there. I had to travel all the way back to the Van Graffs’ place, steal some plasma mines, lay them in front of the tent, run in, run out, wait for everything to stop exploding.

      My second time I was much higher level and had the meltdown perk for energy weapons. I hit Caesar in the head from across the tent, he exploded which caused one of the dogs to explode, which caused the other dog to explode and all of his guards too.

    • Khizan says:

      I was playing a Cowboy perk game and shot my way to him with Boone. Chemmed up, went in, full VATS round of headshots later and Caesar and half his guards were lying headless around his chair.

  5. Abnaxis says:

    Is the displacer fist really that bad, or is it only bad because you don’t have the skill requirement of 100 needed to use it effectively?

    • Vipermagi says:

      It has the same knockback effect that the Bal. Fist has (maybe a smidge stronger, but not notably so in any case), but deals less damage. You also find fewer of them, since all the Praetorians use Bal. Fists :P

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      Ballistic fist is about 40 points stronger,though displacer glove is a bit faster.This leads to an interesting situation where the unique displacer glove has a higher dps than the ballistic fist.Though its not really important since youll rarely need more than 2,3 hits to kill something with it.

  6. Zukhramm says:

    Good thing he brought that incinerator, right?!

    Also, the biggest flaw of Ceasar’s Legion is that these were not in the game.

  7. Harry says:

    Josh: “WHAT THE HELL’S HAPPENED TO MY NECK?”
    Rutskarn (very quietly, almost to himself): “nope”

    This is why I love Rutskarn.

  8. GTRichey says:

    Finally stealing everything from under the Van Graffs’ noses at the start of the week paid off! Imagine how poorly this surely would’ve gone had Josh not decided that he didn’t want to fight anything with only 4 stimpacks.

    So having not seen the batch of episodes that was ditched in order to bring us this week I can only go by assumption, but I think this has been the best week to date for Spoiler Warning and for one am glad that last weeks didn’t turn out well (not for the wasted time of all involved). Even if they had been good episodes they couldn’t have topped the levels reached by this week.

    As an aside, wasn’t it Josh’s intent to recruit Cass at some point in this playthrough? Cass being the only companion that reacts to negative karma seems likely to make this impossible considering Cuftburt’s karma is already pretty negative and by the time you are able to recruit Cass is only likely to be even more negative.

  9. Vect says:

    I think it’s pretty heavily implied that Caesar is in love with the artificial trappings of the Roman Empire as well as just being a egomaniacal psychopath who’s more Caligula than Caesar. While he might have some good ideas here and there when it comes down to it he just wants to play God-Emperor. According to the backstory even as a Follower of the Apocalypse he was a self-absorbed git. Hell, even Lanius has a better understanding of logistics than he does if he’s brought down by Speech/Barter checks but at least he makes it clear he’s in it to be a Post-Apocalyptic Roman Lu Bu than anything.

    Of course, my character opposed them on the principle of being a woman.

    There’s actually some cut dialogue from Arcade in which if he could come along with you into Caesar’s tent and hear his schpiel, he pretty much shoots down any point Caesar might make.
    http://fallout.wikia.com/wiki/Arcade_Gannon#Caesar

    Also, I had a feeling that Josh was really just stacking it all up for the Ballistics Fist so that he can shotgunpunch the Mojave to death.

  10. Vipermagi says:

    I looove Turbo. It’s one of the best chems in the game if you ask me. You can get a recipe for it at the great Khans, and it’s fairly cheap even; broc flower, turpentine, Jet and one Caz. gland. Using 20 of them increases duration by 50% or so (+1 perk), and Chemist then doubles that, making it last quite a long time. So awesome <3

  11. LurkerAbove says:

    I really wish the game had given me the option to officially join the NCR army or the Legionnaires instead of remaining an independent contractor. Especially since you can join so many of the minor factions.

    • Rayen says:

      thats my problem with alot of games. they have the one narrative, that of the independent good guy. I can’t be the bad guy, i can’t join something fully I’m just a contractor loosely affiliated with someone. in morrowind maybe i want to join dagoth ur and kill the tribunal? I want true choice of what i do not what he story says i do in either asshole or angel flavors.

      • Michael says:

        Play table-top games then. With a human sitting directly across the table, it’s easier to get what you want.

      • Khizan says:

        There’s only a distinct amount of freedom a game can give you, and NV does a very good job in that aspect, imo. I mean, sure, you can’t up and join a side formally, but there are FOUR possible factions to side with for the end and every one of them is distinct.

        Support the despot of New Vegas and maintain his iron grip? Bring democrcy to the Mojave via the NCR? Raise the Legion standard over New Vegas? Or do you tell all the sides to screw off and set go independent? You get a lot of choice as to what you do.

  12. rrgg says:

    Caesar strikes me as a guy who read a 5 sentence summery on the Romans once and decided ‘alright, I can fill in the blanks’. The idea that these guys are supposed to be a credible force seems to say a lot about the rest of the fallout universe.

    • Khizan says:

      There’s a lot of them, they train constantly and heavily and are promoted by merit, they’re in much better shape than the average NCR trooper, and they’re amazingly disciplined when compared to the NCR.

      It’s not surprising they’re a force to be reckoned with.

      • rrgg says:

        Aside from the whole ‘using swords, throwing spears, and metal boxing gloves instead of guns’ thing?

        Btw
        @SpoilerWarningGuys
        Yes your let’s plays are funny, but I’m afraid you have sort of taught me that I do not need to play either Fallout game, ever.

        • droid says:

          Either? Don’t you mean the latest two?

          • rrgg says:

            The two they’ve reviewe then :P. Although I suppose I haven’t been too keen on any of the games they’ve done so far. Maybe I’m just broken.

        • Bret says:

          Don’t forget the awful medical care, and lack of air support!

          Dumbasses.

          • Khizan says:

            The only air support in the game is the Boomers and you can get them to side with Caesar.

            Ok, technically the Remnants, but that applies to them as well.

            • Johan says:

              The NCR has a Vertibird, true they only use it for an Air Force 1 type deal, but if everything goes ploin shaped they can still just fly it over the Legionaries’ heads and roll barrels of lit dynamite out of the side and the Legion can’t do anything about it. This is assuming Vertibirds have some protection from small arms fire, of course, but with most of the Legion throwing spears anyway…

    • Chris B Chikin says:

      See my comments a bit further up. A guy who only read five sentences on the Romans would not fall so in love with the idea of their civilisation that he would base his own society on it. Caesar must have known more about Rome than is evident in the game, so how did he mess it up so badly?

      • rrgg says:

        If we want to pretend like the game makers sort of knew what they were doing it might be that he got all his knowledge from really old 50s movies.

  13. gebiv says:

    All in all though, Ceaser killed Cuftbert 5 or 6 times (I know I should have been counting, but I wasn’t) and only died once, himself.

    Sure, Cuftbert ruled the legions at the end of the fight, but the score wasn’t as one-sided as that result indicated. :P

  14. Nick says:

    Off topic – as the new DLC for ME2 is quite so bad, are we likely to see a special episode of Spoiler Warning for it?

    • Raygereio says:

      Arrival is pretty bad, though hardly the worst thing ME2 has to offer.

      I personally loved the desperate attempt from BioWare to make the Reapers an actual threat as they suddenly have an actual plan B out of nowhere following Sovereign’s undignified demise.
      It’s as the writers looked back at ME2 and thought: “Dear lord, that was awfull. How about we make a DLC and base ME3 of that, instead of working with the mess we made?”.

      • LurkerAbove says:

        I disagree. I don’t mind [much] if they make my character act stupidly but to FORCE my character (full paragon, imported from ME1) to act in exactly the opposite manner he would have acted is borderline unforgivable.

        I won’t be able to use that character in ME3. I’m not saying that for dramatic effect. I won’t import him, the DLC did worse than kill him. I wish it had just killed him, and put up a black screen saying I just gave the galaxy to the Reapers. I quite honestly would have preferred that ending for that character.

        • Bret says:

          You killed BATARIANS. That’s as Paragon as an action can get!

        • Raygereio says:

          I’ve got two points to make to that:
          1) So your Shep would rather stand by and let the galaxy be destroyed, rather then killing a few Batarians? Your Shep’s an irresponsible dick… Perfect man to save the galaxy! ^_O
          2) That’s what drove you over the edge? All the other instances in ME2 where your character is railroaded through awfull writing to do utterly insane and out-of-character things are fine?

      • X2-Eliah says:

        Such a shame that the new ‘plan B’ makes the whole 1st and 2nd game pretty much redundant, plot-wise.

  15. Christopher M says:

    All this just makes me wish Bethesda/Obsidian would put WILDERNESS in their games. Stretch the terrain out (while keeping the same “pockets” of activity and questing that exist in the current games), add long-range travel systems (horses/chariots/whathaveyou), and let us feel the scale of the world. Less miniature RPG sandbox, more adventure, please!

    • Khizan says:

      And that would add what? Longer travel times? The need to find a transportation method other than feet? Unless you’re going to add new towns, new camps, new “dungeons” into all that extra wilderness, what does adding it really accomplish?

      And when you take quick travel into consideration I can’t see these changes adding anything of value to the game. It would just make it take longer to reach a place for the first time and walking more miles of empty road really doesn’t seem that fun.

      • Christopher M says:

        It would add exploration value – the ability to just set out into the wilderness, forage your own food and water, fight wild animals… to feel like you’re living in this imaginary world. Give us gameplay through procedural content, not just a set of predefined quests and dungeons that make up “the game.”
        To borrow a buzzword, it’s all about immersion.

        • Sleeping Dragon says:

          That would be pretty cool, kinda like the free exploration space simulators only in the Fallout wasteland realities. The problem, IMHO, is that it would require more than just stretching the landscape a bit. It would take severe alterations to the gameplay mechanics (What’s the use of working for extra XP if you reach the cap by just following the campaign? What’s the use of extra caps if you have nothing to spend them on? What’s the use of foraging for food if the need to forage only comes from you staying in the middle of nowhere?), a lot more content (you have to populate those areas with something, killing radscorpions and geckos for 20 hours just for the sake of survival and not even getting anywhere would get rather boring) and a lot more testing (procedurally generated content tends to be unbalanced and bug prone). In short, an entirely different game. Still sounds like a potentially cool game though.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      I think someone mentioned how they wanted to add cars,but the engine didnt support them,so they decided to make the game smaller instead.

    • Jarenth says:

      If you haven’t played Morrowind yet at this point, you really should. It pretty much has what you’re describing now.

    • Jakey says:

      Ever played Call of Pripyat? It really pulls off the atmosphere of an empty, endless wasteland populated by merely a handful dozen of people whom you’ll hardly ever run into out there in the Zone, save for when you head to the designated safe-zone for the night.

      Stalker’s one of the few games so immersive it made me feel the world didn’t revolve around me and any NPC’s weren’t there solely for the sake of appearances. On the contrary, the Zone’s atmosphere would constantly remind you that no one gave a flying shit about whatever you would be up to and the scope of the game further reinforced that.

  16. Bentusi16 says:

    I like the legion in the sense that it’s kind of a child’s or megalomaniacs interpretation of the information about how the roman empire worked. It’s like someone who read about the roman empire without context, and then applied all the modern ethos to the situation.

    The slavery is colonial, not Roman. The misogyny is blown out proportion, like a modern feminist interpretation of the patriarchy in Rome. Caesar sets himself up as the reincarnation of Mars and deifies himself. The legions power comes from numbers and fanaticism, rather then tactics and training and formations.

    I think it was intentional they be this way. They weren’t terribly written, but written terribly.

    • Sleeping Dragon says:

      The real problem with that is that, as you pointed yourself, Caesar comes of as a megalomaniac, and, I dare add, a fairly dumb one at that. Far as I recall the lore tells us that he’s one of the brightest minds among the Children. It’s the thing that’s mentioned all the time in SW, the Legion doesn’t have the “cruel, but getting results” vibe, at best it’s “evil for giggles and the devs tell us it somehow works”.

      • Bentusi16 says:

        I think part of that might be because he’s losing his mind and his temper due to I can’t get the spoiller thing to work so if you know what I’m talking about you know what I’m talking about. If you talk to the Ghoul companion, he mentions that he’s been through arizona, where it used to be nothing but feral tribes, and you couldn’t get to the next town down the road without being ambushed a few times. With the legion, it’s cleaned up.

        This is also the front line of the legion operations, and he’s trying to fight a psychological terror campaign as well as a more traditional one. He’s trying to intimidate the NCR and New Vegas and everyone else west of the river.

        It doesn’t really excuse some of the stuff though.

  17. Jibar says:

    Did Rutskarn just quote me?
    Is he showing appreciation for something I’ve done?
    Does he… like me?

  18. Halfling says:

    Rejected episode titles:

    Reginald fists Caesar and the Legion.

  19. Raygereio says:

    Someone really ought to grab that footage with the Reginald sitting on Ceasar’s throne and dub it over with the theme from Conan the Barbarian.

  20. Daemian Lucifer says:

    That neck death,and the last scene were so awesome.

    The problem with the legion is that they arent based on actual roman empire,but on the nazis actually.Think about it:A charismatic leader who wants to take over the world,but has this crazy idea to enslave a big part of his people and use them for crap instead of letting them benefit his empire.

  21. Littlefinger says:

    Damn it, I was really looking forward to Josh dynamite-pantsing Caesar. It’s my favorite way to killing that guy (well, technically it’s C4-ing his entire bodyguard unit, but the distinction is small).

    • Klay F. says:

      Its actually impossible to sneak by Caesar’s bodyguards.

      • Vipermagi says:

        You can just simply walk past though. Mark of Caesar.

        Of course, what with Josh blowing up an entire outpost, that didn’t work out.

        100 Sneak and a Stealth Boy activated while Hidden rather than while Detected also works. As does not running if you don’t have Silent Running yet! :p Really, Josh hardly tried it seemed.

      • Josh says:

        Wait, it’s impossible to sneak past Caesar’s bodyguards? Did they do that in a patch or something? Because I did it on my first ever playthrough. House told me not to kill Caesar – so I didn’t – I just snuck into the tent and sneak attacked every single one of his praetorian guards one by one, leaving him to rule over his tent full of dismembered corpses.

        And then I left.

  22. X2-Eliah says:

    Such a shame that Obsidian didn’t go for making the imperialistic Legion the good guys and the post-US-like NCR the actual bad guys.. That would induce a bit more interesting split.

    • Christopher M says:

      Interesting in that it basically paints the same revisionist “US are evil imperialists” picture that crops up in fully half the media these days, sure.

      I don’t think I like the sound of that very much…

      • Raygereio says:

        Agreed. I’m glad OEI decided not to go there.
        I for think it’s a shame they didn’t do more with the “The legion are bastards but have the manpower to actually do something” vs. “The NCR are goodygoodguys but are stretched thin to the point where they don’t have any teeth”.
        It could have proved some nice grey vs. gray options.

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          Ncr already is grey.Whomever you talk with tells you how ineffective they are due to their outdated system of bureaucracy.Yeah,it works,kinda,but its not something you want when resources are scarce.

    • Sleeping Dragon says:

      Doesn’t the Enclave have that covered? In fact if it was Legion VS Enclave rather than Legion VS NCR it could be kinda interesting. Neither is what we would call good, both are strongly militaristic. One is violently anti-tech, the other is violently pro-tech. One of them is desperately trying to build on the leftovers from before the war, the other is trying to wipe the slate clean and start anew…

      Of course this wouldn’t change my opinion that Legion needs to be written better but IMHO it does sound more like an interesting search for lesser evil as opposed to “boring good VS stupid evil”.

  23. Johan says:

    I have to say, the Legion may be bloodthirsty, incompetent, short-sighted, and ignorant, but I do sort of like their getup. The NCR is dressed in brown, which blends in to the background for a brown on brown look that may be incredibly smart to have in a camouflage sense, but is not fun to look at. The Legion, meanwhile, is dressed in a pleasing red with the occasionally frilly headpiece that makes them just about the most colorful thing in the wasteland. Again, this may be less smart than blending in, but it is so nice to see some variety, rather than the seemingly endless shades of brown worn by the NCR.

  24. blizzardwolf says:

    I hate to be a downer here Shamus, but it seems like you guys are doing an inordinate amount of complaining about a game everyone said they liked so much at the beginning of the series, particularly compared to Mass Effect 2, or even Fallout 3.

    I may not have all my facts right, I’m mostly just going on my memory right now, and admittedly it’s a bad memory so it’s possible I’m seeing things skewed, but it just seems like there’s been A LOT of complaints about this NPC, or that environment, this quest, that weapon, how this-and-that doesn’t make sense and is immersion-breaking, and it seems like that’s been the trend for 16 episodes.

    I’m trying to get my point across without any bile or fanboy ankle biting here, I don’t want you guys to take it that way. I like Spoiler Warning, and in the past I’ve liked hearing what you guys have to say about the games, you give insightful, intelligent deconstructions of concepts. themes, and plot devices, what works, what was interesting and what wasn’t, all while also having fun, or at least as much as can be had (I’m looking at YOU Bioshock). But it’s hard to keep listening when it’s the same thing being said repeatedly. Today was honestly the first Spoiler Warning I was watching, and got so bored with I quit halfway through.

    Likewise, I was looking forward to seeing the crew embark on some of New Vegas’ better sidequests, Something like Vault 11 with the election bloc, visiting the supermutant town in the northwest (the name eludes me).

    It’s not for me to tell you guys what to do or how to play a game. This is your site with your show that you put the money, time, and effort into. But I know you care about fan reactions and opinions, good or ill, so I thought maybe I should share some dislikes in with all the praise coming from everywhere else.

    • Josh says:

      Well, Ceaser’s Legion is probably the worst part of the game. Or at least, a close contender. Also, I’ve discovered it’s much easier than you might think to end up finding yourself nitpicking about little things when you’re consciously turning a critical eye towards a given game. And a lot of that nitpicking (Rutskarn complaining about House) is really just us joking around and making fun of the line delivery than anything else.

      And ironically, doing sidequests around Vegas was part of the reason our last batch of episodes went so bad, because we didn’t really have a plan for what to do at the time. We decided we needed to get a few skills up before we did that sort of thing, but rest assured – we will trudge off the beaten path before this season is over.

    • Shamus says:

      To be clear, I’m having a great time.

      The “I wish the Legion wasn’t so shallow” is more of a wishlist / polish issue. This is very different from Fallout 3, where (say) the Enclave was a mess of mustache-twirling evil, nonsense motivations, and terrible blandness.

      It’s the difference between “I wish this pizza had a bit more green peppers” and “this pizza is make of poisonous spiders and the bones of infants”.

      • bit says:

        Well, you know, as long as you remove the poison…

      • blizzardwolf says:

        Thank you both for getting back to me, and hopefully not taking what I said as an attack. I hadn’t thought about how much easier it becomes to nitpick when you’re critically evaluating a game until Josh mentioned it, and then I realized “y’know, it kinda is.”

        I’m glad everyone’s having a great time, and I don’t intend to do anything childish like boycott Spoiler Warning over this. Just wanted to make my voice heard, that’s all. I’m looking forward to more episodes.

        Also, thank you for that infant bones joke.

      • Vect says:

        Well, they do seem to lampshade the Legion being not nearly as effective as they believe. Silus, the Centurion in McCarran thinks Caesar’s losing it and has practically lost faith in the Legion. Lanius at least is understanding enough to to listen and agree with you if you say that the Legion won’t be able to support itself in the long run. Caesar “losing it” is probably due to his brain tumor, which causes him headaches and probably affects some other stuff too.

    • Sekundaari says:

      They didn’t touch the side quests in Fallout 3 either, I recall. Except if you count the DLC quests of course. Oh, and Power of the Atom. I remember Shamus mentioning he likes the Wasteland Survival Guide quest, for example, but they wouldn’t do it because it’s so long. I assume this game too has enough main quest that the season would reach a huge length if they included side quests.

      Now that I mentioned it, in some previous episode there was talk of a very, very long quest starting in Novac, I think. How long is it compared to Wasteland Survival Guide?

      • Daemian Lucifer says:

        The ghoul one?Yeah,its pretty long.Unless,of course,you choose the “go there and kill everyone” option,in which case its quite a short one.I dont know how it fares compared to the wasteland survival though,I simply couldnt play fallout 3 past its beginning.

      • BenD says:

        Short. Wasteland Survival Guide is arguably as long as or longer than the main quest in Fallout 3. You go forth, come back, go forth, come back, go forth, come back… if you choose all the “best” options and do it very thoroughly you will spend many hours on it. By comparison, Come Fly With Me takes a couple hours.

        That said, most players probably do Wasteland Survival Guide in amongst other quests, as they come across relevant areas naturally, so it doesn’t really double the game’s length. Contrast this with Come Fly With Me, which is pretty much all you’ll be doing for the couple hours you’re at it, so it’s a single solid chunk of one thing. I suspect the issue isn’t so much ‘ugh this quest is so long’ as it is ‘ugh do we really want 3-4 straight episodes of Spoiler Warning to be nothing but this quest’.

        Also, Come Fly With Me would probably take longer if you’re underleveled (Cuftbert), don’t have skills that will help you pass some of the checks (Cuftbert), or don’t have a little pocket change (Cuftbert prior to taking everything from the Van Graffs except their underwear). So that would make it even worse. Almost like doing a DLC, but without the variety and different environment that DLCs usually offer.

  25. Sydney says:

    Come on, Josh. You know better than to #sit on thrones until you have a unicorn horn and shock resistance. Now look what’s happened.

  26. Another_Scott says:

    Some of the incredible things that have been happening in combat these past few episodes would make for a good closing credits montage eh? *wink* *nudge* *nudge*

  27. Dumbledorito says:

    The Romans weren’t necessarily all about technology. They had the first professional army, which helped, but there’s evidence they weren’t as advanced as some of the peoples they conquered. I’d say if they were being true to the Romans, they’d mostly be grabbing all the weapons they could, if nothing else. And besides, how many modern-day groups do we have today that claim to be the new version of some older organization, yet they don’t go very far beyond the costumes and the popular view of how they behaved (for example, any outfit that says they’re modern Vikings and yet they wear horned helmets).

    • Vect says:

      I’d just say it’s more that Caesar had a hard-on for Romans and modeled his Legion exactly like it.

      Doesn’t stop him from having an autodoc and trying to do trade with the Van Graffs however.

  28. Deoxy says:

    Heh – your meta-comment for 69 is a Bill & Ted reference. Nice.

  29. Eärlindor says:

    Aw man, I love how this episode ended.

    And man, that has to be one of the coolest melee weapons I’ve ever seen.

    I really need to get this game…

  30. Jarenth says:

    I for one am excited about this new Spoiler Warning direction: instead of talking to plot-relevant NPCs, and thus spoiling their precious dialogue like the tasty RPG filling that it is, just punch them to death!

    It’s still entertaining, and as an added bonus, the dialogue remains fresh for me to play through myself. Once I can be bothered to finally get New Vegas.

  31. Blanko2 says:

    so you beat the game, right? we’re done!
    :D
    thats how it works when you kill the big bad, isnt it?

  32. ClearWater says:

    There’s this episode of Fanboy and Chum Chum where, whenever anyone says “robot claws”, Chum Chum repeats it like this.

    That’s what I imagine Mumbles looks like when she says “Kaizarrr”.

  33. blizzardwolf says:

    (Sorry for the thunderous post here)

    I think Caesar’s Legion makes more sense than it first appears, and there’s in-game evidence to support it, but for whatever reason the game doesn’t draw as much attention to it as it does for the NCR. The player has to go rooting around the dialog trees of certain otherwise unremarkable NPC’s to find those clues.

    But the reasoning is there. The NCR is the stand in for America; freedom, liberty, ideals, and independence for all. Except that very idealism is what makes their society unsustainable in the long term, at least at this point in human history. They’re trying to run a civilization like it’s still the 20th century, where there weren’t mutant scorpions, giant poisonous flies, and Deathclaws on every doorstep.

    Problem is, those dangers (and others besides the Legion) DO exist, and the NCR isn’t equipped in a societal capacity to deal with them. Even if the Legion were gone as a threat the very next day, all the other “regular” dangers of the Mojave still exist, and the NCR as a result of it’s government’s ambition, has stretched itself way too thin to adequately protect anything it lays claim to.

    You see this throughout the game at every NCR camp and outpost you visit. The soldiers and officers are always complaining about how understaffed and undersupplied they are, even when you visit their largest base in the region. NPC’s like Cass and some merchants mostly have the same opinion. “Nice guys, but too far spread to do any good.”

    In the balance of idealism/pragmatism, they’re erring on the side of the former, which is going to doom them. Because it’s not the 20th century anymore, it’s a post-apocalyptic wasteland where 20th century luxuries don’t exist. When basic survival is everyone’s number one concern again, practicality becomes the law of the land.

    Contrast the NCR with Caesar’s Legion. The Legion has an extreme focus on the physical conditioning of everyone in their society who’s not a slave, and on conquering and uniting every piecemeal tribe they encounter under one rule. This conditioning is necessary when literally no one is safe anywhere, and the “join us or die” route helps prevent a lot of disagreement and arguing by making sure everyone wants the same thing. Whether they like it or not.

    That sort of thing has a lot of downsides, but one major benefit is it lets you make and implement decisions a lot faster, and across a wider area. The Legion also aren’t as far spread as the NCR, which allows them to more effectively guard their trade routes, (y’know, those things that guarantee them a steady supply of food, water, raw materials, weapons, and other supplies). Traders like Dale Barton, or Cass will remark on this if you talk to them, and in this the Legion is making a much smarter decision than the NCR, because an army, and even a civilization lives and dies on it’s logistics.

    The Legion’s disdain of meds and some technology is another extension of their pragmatism. A person who’s reliant or becomes that way on meds, or labor-saving technology IS essentially weak as far as a wasteland is concerned. In a more civilized and developed society you can tolerate that sort of thing, but when it’s literally survival of the fittest, people like that will get other people killed, and have to be culled somehow for long term survival.

    It’s a pretty ghastly solution, and the Legion has a lot of things wrong with it that need to be fixed over time, like their treatment of women, and the extremely inefficient use of slave labor.

    It ain’t perfect, but then none of the choices in the wake of societal collapse are, and what you have here is a pick between short term accomplishment and long term viability, and that’s about the best that can be said for any of your options in the game.

    • Tizzy says:

      The technology issue can even be expanded on, though the setting does not really do it justice (given the number of years that have elapsed since the collapse of civilization). But rather than phrasing it as “weakness is intolerable”, a more compelling point could be: since we’re going to run out of magical tech gizmos in the short term, the group that will thrive in the future is the one that learns to make do without them straight away.

      It’s a tough pill to swallow for any individual (don’t use that stimpack or that gun), but you can’t reject it out of hand because it would make so much sense for society at large.

    • Corsair says:

      Problem: The game shows that stimpacks are both magical healing objects and easily made out of common wasteland plant life.

    • Klay F. says:

      Yeah, but their pragmatism only gets them so far. Especially when you compare to the Brotherhood of Steel. One Brotherhood paladin in power armor is basically worth 10 legionaries give or take a dozen.

      Pretty much every Fallout game makes this case for how unstoppable one can be with properly maintained tech.

      • Bret says:

        Yup.

        Also, the NCR not being sustainable?

        They’ve already been around for… nearly a century now.

        They run California and a bit beyond. Won a war with the Brotherhood of Steel. In other words, they’re doing badly in Vegas because, honestly, they’re treating it as a minor issue, sending token detachments for an unpopular war.

        Caesar’s Legion has this expansion as goal #1. They’re losing.

        As for ideals? They’re how people win, if I may borrow from Chesterton:

        “It is imagination that makes a man outwit his enemy, and it is imagination that makes him spare his enemy. It is precisely because this picturing of the other man’s point of view is in the main a thing in which Christians and Europeans specialise that Christians and Europeans, with all their faults, have carried to such perfection both the arts of peace and war.

        They alone have invented machine-guns, and they alone have invented ambulances; they have invented ambulances (strange as it may sound) for the same reason for which they have invented machine-guns. Both involve a vivid calculation of remote events. It is precisely because the East, with all its wisdom, is cruel, that the East, with all its wisdom, is weak. And it is precisely because savages are pitiless that they are still—merely savages. If they could imagine their enemy’s sufferings they could also imagine his tactics. If Zulus did not cut off the Englishman’s head they might really borrow it. For if you do not understand a man you cannot crush him. And if you do understand him, very probably you will not.”

      • Khizan says:

        Fortunately for the Legion, they have way more than 12 Legionaries per paladin. :P

    • Zukhramm says:

      Now I was not aware that the world was supposed to be some kind of horrible resourceless starving, Goodsprings, Primm, Novac and Vegas seems to do pretty good, and so did Nipton before the Legion, and there are two working power plants and a robot army to protect it. Sure, there are dangers, it’s not perfect, but to me the most problem seem to come from the two invading forces, the NCR and Ceasar’s Legion.

      • Tizzy says:

        That was kind of the point of my remark about the setting not doing the situation justice. The Fallout stories are mostly written from a point of view of scarce resources and struggle for survival.

        But strictly adhering to this concept would make for boring gameplay. (A couple of hundred years after the Fall, you’d expect it would be hard to find a single gun, let alone ammunition for it).

        Hence the contradictions between what you *see* (and loot) and what you *hear* from certain characters/factions.

        • Bret says:

          Uh, that’s the thing.

          Fallout’s a wasteland, but there’s a LOT of detritus of the old world, and civilization is more or less recovering.

          Did you SEE the NCR in 2?

          They’ve gone from one tiny resource deprived village to pretty much modern standards. Maybe better.

          And the reason the NCR has guns? They make guns. They’re stable.

          The Legion will die with Caeser, they can’t make jack, and they’re generally useless for anything but committing war crimes. There seems to be an idea from time that brutality is strength, that moral decency is a weakness, and that simply condoning more atrocities means you’re better equipped to survive. It’s a folly.

          Heck, Machiavelli knew it was folly. His rule #1 was “Never be hated”, and his official verdict on atrocities was “Avoid. If you must, get it all done in one swoop, so they can forgive you. Drawing them out is suicide.”

          • Vect says:

            Caesar just wants to be like Raoh from Fist of the North Star: “Blah blah blah choking some order into this world by kicking everybody’s ass”. Thing is, aside from having a Displacer Glove he is not Raoh. He also doesn’t have the Bloody Mess perk.

    • Ziggywolf5 says:

      “The Legion’s disdain of meds and some technology is another extension of their pragmatism. A person who’s reliant or becomes that way on meds, or labor-saving technology IS essentially weak as far as a wasteland is concerned.”
      The thing is, this not a practical idea; it more or less ensures that you get beaten by someone with better firepower. Just ask the Inca.
      Besides, technology doesn’t necessarily make a group weaker. For example, mechanized farming could easily improve the yield and quality of a crop for the Legion. More food = more people, quality food = better diet = healthier people.
      As far as medicine goes, that line of thought is great up until cholera rears its head and no one knows what antibiotics are.

    • TommyBiondillo says:

      Agreed. The US in this world needs to be reunited by force.

      Of course the best option would be to rebuild the technology which I really don’t understand why in Fallout this is such an issue.

      If radiation has subsided then why can’t things be rebuilt?

      The society that got nuked was more advanced. Surely a wikipedia of info could have been kept in every single vault.

      They must of had super flash drives before the war. None of them survived?

      Also why would everyone with this knowledge just descend into chaos.

      Why would tribes form? I don’t think that is what would happen in the real world.

      But anyway the NCR is too lenient and so that is why the Legion needs to kill all who oppose so things can be reimplemented. Although if Caesar dies as you all know if Lanius wins he doesn’t care and is just a barbarian. (In his victory ending)

  34. Fang says:

    “I am going to glare at Ceaser’s throne till it also explodes!”

    That’s what I think Cuftburt was thinking when the game bugged out.

  35. Reach says:

    Rutskarn, if you’re worried about your “nope” going unnoticed, fear not.

  36. sebcw1204 says:

    just checking in. still bunny-hopping i see. i think i’m going to watch something less nauseating, like 2 girls 1 cup.

  37. ProudCynic says:

    Just something I want to throw in: the women you guys point out in the beginning of the episode, that have huge packs on their backs? If you check in VATS, their legs are crippled. Ouch.

    I think the game did do an alright job with illustrating the pragmatism vs. idealism thing with the Legion vs. NCR conflict. If you talk with Raul, or that merchant near the Fort’s front gate, they’ll tell you about how their lands are almost completely safe and bandit-free. And the stories you hear from how the Legion started indicated that Caesar basically did exactly what you said, Mr. Young. But I think they do leave a bit too bad a taste in your mouth to be considered a legitimate alternative to… well, anyone else. I wouldn’t call them incompetent, just… Assholes.

    Oh, and are you guys planning on checking out Honest Hearts when it comes out tomorrow? Then you guys might have a chance of actually spoiling something.

  38. Kel'Thuzad says:

    “Oh, your town is being raided nightly by fiends? We’ll table a motion at the next meeting to form a fiend oversight sub-committee and investigate possible solutions to this fiend issue.”

    I know this is a bit late and constitutes needless nitpicking, but tabling a topic means putting it away for later review, not proposing it.

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>