Spoiler Warning S5E36: Murder, On the House

By Shamus
on Jun 23, 2011
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning


Link (YouTube)

When I went through the game, I didn’t even notice that Mr. House didn’t pay you for a majority of the work that you do. By that point in the game I had lots of chips and I just sort of assumed that each quest turn-in was putting some caps in my pocket.

I believe there are four endings to the game: House, Legion, NCR, and Wild Card. Within those endings, some of them have options, like what to do with the dam and Helios One.

Out of curiosity, which ending(s) did everyone go for? Did anyone do them all?

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  1. Mincecraft says:

    I’ve never actually managed to finish New Vegas. Everytime I start to get near the end, something or someone prevents me from actually finishing it :( .

    • Greg says:

      I’ve never managed to finish it either. The furthest I got was completing the Boomers, Great Khans and Helios One along with a bunch of stuff for the NCR. I usually end up stopping out of frustration with the game engine, it just feels so damn clunky. Especially as I prefer to play as a gun char, so I either so the not-smooth ironsights (which I normally enjoy in games) or I use VATS and feel like I’m just pressing buttons while something else has all the fun.

      That’s part of why I can’t help but get hyped for Skyrim, no more Gamebyro!

  2. Eschatos says:

    Wild Card ending for me. I kept a save right before I had to split off to that one so I could still do all the other endings, but after I finished I didn’t feel like any more New Vegas.

    • Amsus says:

      I did the same thing. After putting 50 odd hours into the game and experiencing three crashes during the endgame i couldn’t be bothered to try again honestly.

    • Crowbar says:

      I was originally going to go with Mr. House, but when I met the Yes-Man a grin of malevolent greed spread across my face. It really was a surprise to me that the game was letting me do something like that.

  3. AlternatePFG says:

    I’ve done every single ending multiple times except for Mr. House. Halfway through the game he always says something that pisses me off, so I react by putting a bullet in his head. The first ending I went for was the NCR ending, then Independent and after many playthroughs I finally did the Legion ending. But never Mr. House.

  4. hardband says:

    I chose wild card, but only because (new vegas as buggy as it is) one of the critical NCR missions bugged out and i COULDN’T get NCR :(

  5. Vipermagi says:

    Only completed the game once (end game didn’t seem worth replaying). Yes Man + genocide.

  6. krellen says:

    I’ve done every ending (I did Independent twice, once by accident on my first playthrough because I cornered myself into no other options, the second on my most recent playthrough doing a homicidal kill-everything run). I think non-homicidal Independent and NCR are the most satisfying endings.

    • Someone says:

      Legion’s ending is really boring, cause you end up locking yourself out of many interesting quests which show up in the ending.

      I’m actually a bit annoyed they don’t show you the endings to all the quests even if you haven’t started them.

  7. Aelyn says:

    Honestly, I found the game to be less than engaging. I finished and went for the Wild Card ending simply because I knew it would be the only time I’d finish the game and I WANTED TO WIN.

  8. JPH says:

    “Alright, Mr. House, let’s go talk to you!” I love how much sense that sentence makes.

    EDIT: Also, I went with the Wild Card. It seemed like the most logical choice for me. I don’t trust any of those assholes.

  9. Airsoftslayer93 says:

    First time i went yes man, this time im going a wierd sort of ncr route that includes lots of odd stuff, that i shouldnt be able to do going that route

  10. Piflik says:

    I did all the major endings…House, Wildcard and NCR aren’t that different though, including the final gameplay hours…the only difference between NCR and House/Wildcard is the starting point (inside Hoover Dam or outside). Caesar is different in that you storm the Dam instead of defending it, and I have to admit I found it much more interesting, although I hated the Legion itself…I also played a female character in my Legion Run, that made it even harder to sympathize with their cause…

    • psivamp says:

      I did all four major endings and three different combat build play-throughs. My melee/unarmed run was the easiest.

      I had a heck of a time with the Legion ending because I was 2 points shy on a Speech check and the autosave plunked me down right into the conversation I needed the magazine for…

  11. Greygore says:

    I went for the (benevolent ruler) Wild Card as well, following this reasoning:

    *Caesar’s Legion – Slavers, I kinda massacred them before realizing House wanted me to negotiate (or some such).
    *NCR – Bad memories from the Fallout 2 playthroughs, plus that ambassador dude came across as a total sleaze.
    *House – Pompous and insufferable to a fault, I killed him by accident but I guess if given the option I would let him live (after making sure he wasn’t a threat)

    As an aside, did anyone else murder the Great Khans on sight? Again, I reckon I was conditioned by the original Fallout games to just attack ’em on sight (maybe the *one* point I’d change if I ever got round to playing NV again).

    • Neil D says:

      I didn’t, but I always kind of felt like I should. I kept expecting to have to at any minute.

      • Dee_Dubs says:

        I went into red rock canyon planning to kill every Great Kahn in sight. I’m a bit hazy on what happened next, but when I left the canyon I had been accepted as a friend of the tribe, stopped them from siding with the Legion and retasked their drug labs to make medical supplies instead.
        Sometimes things just don’t go the way you plan…

  12. Kelly says:

    I always side with House because he’s the ONLY choice that would actually offer long term stability for the area. The NCR overextends themselves and is a corrupt bureaucracy controlled by simpletons, Yes Man is obviously set to go murderous psycho robot in the future, and the Legion is just plain dumb.

    Plus, he’s the reason Vegas exists in the first place, he’s the only one with any legitimate claim to it, on top of being the only fit ruler.

    • Andrew B says:

      Although, at least in terms of endings as presented by the game, all four choices actually work out as “civilisation comes to New Vegas”, in one shape or another. Even if you purposefully screw up your ending (say by destroying the Securitrons and then going Wild Card) you tend to get something “after a period of violence and bloodshed, New Vegas rose to take its place as an independant power in the Mojave”. Even the Legion ending is pretty positive, with a “uncompromising, but secure” tone. (It makes sense, I suppose. It would suck badly to finish the game and then be told “oh, by the way, you lost after we stopped playing”, but it does mean that all the endings are positive, which is a little odd.)

      • Kelly says:

        Well yes but it’s rather obvious that’s not going to last. The game repeatedly makes clear that any sort of Legion rule will collapse without Caesar himself and the the NCR isn’t even able to control its current holdings, never mind New Vegas. And of course a psychotic mailman and a robot that’s becoming “assertive” aren’t a proper government by any means.

        • Zukhramm says:

          But my mailman was not psychotic, and if the robot becomes too assertive, I’ll just shut him down.

          • Kelly says:

            Then you’d lose the Securitrons, and thus your one force that holds all the others in check, aside of the Boomers, who can’t fight every battle for you.

            • Zukhramm says:

              House can run the Securitrons without Yes Man, why coudln’t I?

              • Raygereio says:

                Do you happen to have a conciousness inside a computer?

                • Even says:

                  That doesn’t mean they couldn’t be controlled. The Lucky 38 hacking quest proved it’s possible to access the network externally, if from behind a firewall or two, but given that you have access to the mainframe I don’t see why there’d be any problems.

                  • Kelly says:

                    Actually it didn’t prove that at all, as the bug is immediately crushed, even if House is DEAD.

                    • Even says:

                      That’s actually listed as a bug in the wiki, since the quest giver still states that it’s House frying it, even though he’s dead.

                      You could argue about the intent of the writing staff, but even if it was just so well protected, it doesn’t mean it couldn’t be broken into. It still wouldn’t make much sense to have the Penthouse mainframe all locked up.

                • Zukhramm says:

                  No, but neither did House and whatever tools he used I have at my disposal as well. I just don’t get how Yes Man is supposed to be some insanely powerful omnipotent monster AI suddenly, he was thrown together by some Follower who although considering she got past whatever security the Securitrons have is still probably not the most amazing genius programmer on the planet.

                • I always have 100 science skill and 10 intelligence – if anyone can run them it’s me.

    • Deadpool says:

      Weeeeell… The NCR is a foil for the growing united states, and this is a reverse “Wild West” type thing (the west colonizing the east). Growing societies always overextend themselves (Caesar’s Legion hasn’t yet because it’s relatively small), as did the United States when colonizing the west. Bureaucracies will always be corrupt. In the end, the US ended up relatively stable, so to say the NCR would NEVER keep stability is a bit of an overestatement.

      House and Yes Man are megalomaniacal choices (the only difference is WHO the megalomaniac IS) and, truthfully, the most likely to fall. Vegas would have little way of expanding, and once everyone else DID expand, with superior resources and time to catch up (and surpass) technologically, holding Vegas through force alone would be impossible.

      Caesar’s Legion has been described by every wise man in the game as not lasting long after Caesar’s fall.

      Meanwhile the NCR is a return to the old ways. Although one could argue that way has failed before (the bombs!), it does seem to take the longest to fail.

      Edit: Accidently deleted half the post before… Dammit…

      Anyone else hate how editing gets done here? Damned thing keeps scrolling up…

      • Kelly says:

        But House never intended to use force alone in the long term. That’s why Kimball staying alive is so important, so the NCR citizens see him as the reason why the Mojave failed and House as merely a benevolent neighbor who Kimball and Oliver tormented. In the long term, he talks about nothing but research and trade, implying that his ultimate goal, once the expansion crazed Oliver and Kimball were dealt with he planned to engage in diplomacy.

        • Even says:

          Or maybe he just says these things to get you to trust him. For all the sweet talk, he’s still an egotistical asshole of enormous magnitude.

          Actions speak louder than words, and for all he’s willing to do for his pipedream, I could never find enough trust for the guy.

          Generally, for his plans to work, he would in the long run need to earn the trust of his people (unless he plans to do all that work with robots), and frankly, nobody does, due to the fact he’s just that self-centred. I can only remember some White Gloves actually being upset if you kill him, everybody else is just practically cheering at you.

          I can only agree with the Omertas: Fuck Not-At-Home.

  13. Juggernaut246 says:

    I have only finished New Vegas once. Sided with the NCR and managed to get the brotherhood and the boomers to help out.

    • BenD says:

      This was my first playthrough. Then I did Wild Card, trying to make as idyllic a wasteland and Vegas as possible (it’s tough – a lot of the ending slides seem programmed as gotchas. ‘Oh, you did such nice things for Westside, but it pretty much went to hell after you left!’). Then I did Legion, killed the boomers and the brotherhood and all the NCR I could stand to kill (but total NCR-cide seemed like it would take days and I got weary of it). The Legion endgame IS very, very good.

      So I didn’t do the ending that really seems most obvious and most like the player is led toward it – House’s. I’m working on a slow, exploratory, pleasure playthrough now that will end with House winning. House being an ass is kind of frustrating, but after having seen the other three endings I have come to realize that this game really does not want to let you WIN. You never get to save the world, you just get to sort of settle this one little skirmish. Sort of.

      • Someone says:

        I think that’s a part of it’s charm. There are some things you just can’t “fix”, not even with your 100 speech, science and repair, and some people will always end up getting the short end of the stick. That’s life. That’s Wasteland.

        • Bret says:

          But it’s not particularly Fallout.

          First game and the second, you could not only save everybody, most places it wasn’t that hard.

          • Someone says:

            I think it’s quite Fallout, or at least post-apoc.

            I may misremember it, but in Fallout 2 Broken Hills eventually ran out of uranium and dissolved even if you solved the racism problem, New Reno’s path to “salvation” was quite well hidden (and, as it turns out, non-canon)… you certainly couldn’t save the Enclave or New Khans. Besides, both Fallouts had a fairly linear storyline.

  14. silentStatic says:

    My first run-through was with Mr. House. Since then I have completed it with both NCR and The Legion. I have never really bothered with the Wild Card ending as it from a mechanical viewpoint seemed almost identical with the Mr. House path (that, and the fact that I am in the distinct minority that didn’t fall in love with Yes-Man).

    Fun tip: For the PC Steam version you can view the percentage of people who got achievements, and since ending has their own achievement, you can see how great how many completed each path.

    I think it goes something like this:
    1. Wild Card (by a fair margin)
    2. NCR
    3. Mr. House
    4. Legion

    Though I might be mistaken about the order of NCR and Mr. House.

  15. Vect says:

    If you go “OK I’ll put you back in, Mr. House”, he’ll just say “Too late! I’m already infected with outside germs! I’ll die in a year! Just kill me now!”. You can also totally tell them that “Oh the NCR/KAE-ZAAAAAR/Yes Man wants you out of the way”

    I’m suddenly reminded of the Commando line “You’re funny, Sully. That’s why I’ll kill you last”.

    Yes Man’s confirming that the Mk. II Upgrade was installed, not installing it himself. He only does that if you didn’t have House install it.

    You can ally the Brotherhood with the NCR. Colonel Moore gets pissed off and they dislike you just a tiny bit. Caesar and House wants them dead though (Caesar wants them dead he hates tech and House wants them dead because they’re assholes who will totally start shit after he gets rid of everyone else).

    Fun fact about the White Glove Society masks: Everyone who’s not the WGS hates the masks because they’re ugly and creepy. It’s because their leader Marjorie thinks it makes them look cool.

    • Hitch says:

      I tried to side with Mr. House, but he just kept rubbing me the wrong way until I had no choice but to end him and let the Yes man take over the Lucky 38. I was pretty vindictive towards House by that point, so I didn’t kill him. I took the option of, “I’m going to let you suffer, powerless for as long as possible before you die.”

      If you throw in with the NCR, Crocker tells you to find and wipe out the Brotherhood. But if you find them and talk to them. (And do all their fetch quests — but hey, it’s a computer RPG, fetch quests are par for the course, what were you expecting?) You can convince them to ally with the NCR. Then tell Crocker he was an idiot for wanting them dead.

      Also, as I’ve said before, if you put up with the Boomer BS, they agree to use their bomber on whoever you want.

      I think there’s a very difficult option for convincing the Great Khans to join the coalition, but it was too much hassle. I just convinced them that the Mojave was becoming too civilized and bureaucratic so they should move out into new territory. (Thinking to myself, that I’d be following them as soon as I was done with the idiot NPCs in this game.)

      • Vect says:

        It’s not Crocker who wants to kill them. It’s Moore. Crocker’s all about doing things diplomatically while Moore thinks that diplomacy is for pussies and that the best answer is to just send in guys to kick ass and take names.

        Also, not sure if this happened for anyone else but for the Great Khans, I convinced them to go and leave the Mojave peacefully via Speech. Come Hoover Dam for the Wild Card ending, the Khans appeared as my backup (not that I was complaining though). I thought you have to go a specific route for them to ally with you/NCR, namely assassinating Papa Khan and putting Regis in power.

        • Someone says:

          I can actually understand Moore’s point of view, even though I don’t agree with it. She was in the trenches from 14 years of age, fighting the brotherhood, the khans , seeing her comrades killed by them. No wonder she just wants to kill everyone who’s not NCR.

      • Someone says:

        I just sneaked into Papa Khan’s bedroom through the backdoor, put him out with a silenced Sniper Rifle shot to the head and then watched Regis throw in with the NCR out of desperation.

  16. Sagretti says:

    The Brotherhood quests are definitely boring’sh fetch quests, though unlike the Boomers you can fast travel to most of it. The only part that requires decent effort is the junk you need from 3 of the vaults, but Obsidian was nice enough to have that stuff exist in the game world even if you don’t have the quest yet. By the time I go to the Brotherhood, I had already picked up two of the the three required items, and the last was located in Vault 11, which I wanted to explore anyways. Felt nice to have my exploration during other quests rewarded instead of punished with more backtracking.

  17. Even says:

    I went through them all on different characters, though I have to say I did my Legion run mostly for the achievement. At the end I grew to prefer the Wild Card path the most. NCR is too corrupt, greedy and inefficient to deserve any of it, Legion is too retarded/stupid/savage and House’s ego just could never fit the Mojave so going with Yes Man and a free New Vegas just felt like a natural choice to make.

    About confronting House, the lack of options is EXACTLY what bothered me the most about it. I wanted to call him out on his bullshit, but there’s nothing you can say. There’s not even an option to argue him before that about his methods. If you protest he just starts insulting and berating you.

    “I hate to do this, but New Vegas deserves something better than you.”

    That would have been my line.. Goddamn you, Obsidian.

    Edit: Thing is, I didn’t really want to kill him, but the choices you’re given is either leave him to rot in solitude or give him the dirtnap (which is really only the merciful thing to after he’s plugged from the chamber). I don’t see why they couldn’t have given an option to wrestle the control away from him without plugging/killing him. Reprogram the network, replug some wires, or something..

    • BenD says:

      Yeah, but depriving House of his outside stimulus, control of the Securitrons, ‘sight’ through his cameras etc. would be as good as leaving him there to rot. Because of how he built his network, if you wrest control from him, you also rob him of what remains of his life. Killing him is the only kindness. I, too, wish for options that allow me to tell him that before he dies.

      • Even says:

        But if kept safe inside the chamber, you could always just come up with some way for him to regain a part of that stimulus, if only with restriction. With all his knowledge he could still be of some value to the Courier and New Vegas. Killing him just feels like such a waste, especially considering the actual good things he did for the city despite his overzealous ambitions.

  18. Neil D says:

    First time through I went NCR — they seemed the lesser of all evils, and I didn’t even consider that you could stiff them all.

    After watching a bit of Josh’s playthrough I decided to play through again to check out the unbalanced-ness of melee and unarmed combat, and also to see what happened if you just flat out killed everybody you met, everywhere. I decided my courier suffered severe brain damage from the bullet, and so Shiva the Destroyer went on a completely pan-genocidal (and cannibalistic) rampage, terrorizing the Mojave in her hockey mask and Sexy Sleepwear.

    No quests (at least, not intentionally), no dialogue (if forced into it, go for the quickest and most anti-social ending), just non-stop murder in the most gruesome and spectacular ways possible. Punching, chopping and exploding people into tiny bite-sized chunks.

    To tell the truth, it got to be pretty rote and boring after a while, with some moments of excitement and amusement. I killed Victor three or four times (every time I saw him). Him I could understand, being a transplantable AI, but it was disappointing to see people respawn after a while — usually generics, but I killed the Misfits at Camp Golf twice.

    Anyway, eventually you get to a point where if you want to proceed, the only thing to do is to talk to Yes Man (I killed him a dozen or so times — he just respawns in front of your eyes after about twenty seconds). So I got the Wild Card ending. I probably should have blown up the dam, but I didn’t, so the final narration spoke about the Strip being somewhat prosperous, when it really should have been about me killing and eating everyone who wandered into it.

    Anyway, maybe some people play like this all the time, but I usually tend to go the White Knight route so this was quite a departure for me.

  19. Factoid says:

    I did the house and NCR endings. Spoiler Warning has inspired me to go through and do a melee/unarmed playthrough, so I’ll do the legion and wildcard ones during that playthrough.

  20. Zukhramm says:

    I can’t bring myself to side with any of the factions, I’ve tried but every time I just feel like everything would end up better without them.

    The Great Khans seemed nice enough from what I saw of them, and they probably got the happiest ending in the game for me.

  21. Irridium says:

    Did the wildcard ending. As for all the little details, well I don’t really remember. Been a while since I beat it.

  22. therandombear says:

    Only done Wildcard, currently playing through a Mr.House ending, I’ll have to make a alternate save before I go to Endgame though so I can continue to play and don’t have to start over again to play Old World Blues.

  23. Snake says:

    I actually did the White Glove syndicate just before I watched this episode and came across an annoying bug where no matter what I did they would attack me if they spotted me so I eventually decided to kill them all using a flamer, it was very fun.

    Also, still not finished the game here but I think I’m on the wild card path, I’ve kind of been doing NCR and Wild Card missions.

  24. Dys says:

    First time through I went with House, since he seems to know what he’s doing. The NCR have no claim that far out, and frankly they don’t need to push their borders any further. That’s how empires collapse. The Legion are dumb and pointlessly cruel and so deserve to fail.

    I did go Wild Card on later playthroughs, but in the first run, when I actually cared about my decisions, I figured I really didn’t want to run Vegas, sounds far too much like hard work.

  25. Myth says:

    I basically played through the game trying to balance working for both House and the NCR, and doing the Wild Card quests. Basically, I wanted to be a good guy – so I figured I would turn down any quest that requires me to really hurt someone. So since Wild Card required taking out House, I figured I would never complete it.

    Of course, then I get to the part in the NCR quest where they also want House taken out. So I figure I’ll ditch them and leave House in charge.

    And then he wants me to go kill the Brotherhood of Steel, who I’m buddies with, and he doesn’t accept any of my peaceful proposals to deal with them.

    Thus I’ve ended up with literally every quest chain requiring murdering somebody to advance. So at that point, I pretty much snap, take out House, lay down the law via Wild Card, atomize the Legion, and tell the NCR to get the hell out of there or I will bomb them to pieces and have my army of securitrons stomp on the remains.

    No one willing to play nice? This is what they get.

    • Andrew says:

      I have three characters who could probably wrap up the game with ease, if not for this exact problem. No matter which faction you choose, they demand that you murder people who, despite whatever faults they may possess, don’t really deserve a bullet to the head (or their base exploding around them).
      My solution for each character was to ignore the main plot, and stick to the side quests. If possible, I’d also have liked to shut down New Vegas itself- Casinos feel like the sort of excessive luxury that has no place in a civilization that’s just starting to get back on its feet.

      • Someone says:

        I think the NCR route gives you most opportunities to get factions to play nice with each other, but some of them still won’t agree and some will get shafted even if they do. I kinda liked that no matter how much you try to get along with everyone, you have to pick your allegiances sooner or later.

  26. SlowShootinPete says:

    I sided with Mr. House the first time because I actually thought he was kind of cool, like David Xanatos. I can handle killing and destroying things, let someone else handle the actual responsibilities.

  27. reg42 says:

    I’ve almost played all the endings. I did NCR first, then I did House, reloaded and did Wild Card (sorta cheating but meh), and I was about to do the Legion but my save got wiped about 5-8 hours in.

    I’ll get around to it eventually though. Hopefully.

  28. Gale says:

    Does anyone else feel vaguely threatened by Yes Man’s constant… well, yes-manning? One of the reasons I went with House on my first run was that I completely expected it to go rogue on me. It’s not just a matter of the whole “robots are evil” trope – the way it fawned over your every word raised my hackles, especially when its lines seem to border so closely on biting sarcasm. It was the character I was most suspicious of, far more than anyone else. Excellently written, and perfectly acted.

    • Raygereio says:

      It did make me uneasy at first. I was expected the betrayal any moment the first couple of missions, but by the time the endgame came around I had no reason not to trust Yes Man.

      And then the ending happened…

      • BenD says:

        I suspect they wrote the ‘more independent’ line for Yes Man into the ending because they wanted it to be possible for the Courier to walk into the sunset, which means out of New Vegas. If Yes Man had no future but being the Courier’s lapdog, the Courier would have to stay and lead New Vegas.

        That was what we all WANTED when pursuing Wild Card, of course, but Obsidian doesn’t want us to GET what we WANT.
        In any case, I don’t think it was meant to imply ‘robot insanity!!’ I think it was meant to imply that Yes Man becomes a sort of ok leader for the Securitrons, is capable of making some decisions on his own, and the Courier can leave with a clean conscience.

        • Vect says:

          Exactly. I never took “Assertiveness” as “I’m sorry Courier, I can’t let you do that”. It’s meant to be ambiguous.

          Of course they probably couldn’t code in a Playable Epilogue since the ending does affect the world heavily.

          Also, I did the Independent ending while trying to do things as good/pragmatic as possible. I stopped the Omertas from killing Vegas, got the White Glove Society to kick that nasty People-Eating habit for good, got the Khans to leave peacefully (and somehow getting them as backup for the final battle even though I didn’t ally them with the NCR). I pretty much never play evil because most evil actions tend to be too assholish/nonsensical in my eyes. I don’t like playing a stupid asshole so I just try to make the best of a situation that I can.

    • Hitch says:

      I would have definitely gone Wild Card and sided with Yes Man to take over, except I simply could not accept that Yes man was sincere. I couldn’t listen to him without feeling the tickle of an impending knife in my back.

    • Dodds says:

      The First Time I opened the Door to reveal Yes Man, I made a save as soon as I saw him. Creeping around Benny’s room and there’s suddenly a Securitron staring at me with a Smiley Face? Creepy.

      My first playthrough was with the NCR ending and I’m in the process of a Legion run after watching Spoiler Warning (If only to kill an important VIP via Giant Space Laser.). I’ve been stringing Yes Man along thus far and I really do expect a backstab from him at some point. I’ll do a YM/House runthrough at some point, probably months from now…

  29. mixmastermind says:

    I did wildcard and was working on Caesar’s Legion when my computer basically exploded. I’ll try it again in 5 months when I can afford a desktop again.

  30. TheAngryMongoose says:

    Brazil; exactly what I was thinking. There’s a reason I systematically murdered every single one of their members.

  31. swimon says:

    This choice seems to mimic the end choice in Deus Ex. You have to choose a system of government for this region and your choices are a dysfunctional but well meaning democracy (NCR), an enlightened despot (House) or the past (the legion) except here you could also choose anarchy/unenlightened despot. I think the similarity of the choices highlights both why Deus Ex was so great and why I really didn’t care for this choice in NV.

    In Deus Ex everyone gives you their best argument. They treat you nicely so that you will sympathise with their ideas and then they’ll give you honest and insightful arguments, the choice is about the ideas not about the people behind the ideas. In New Vegas everyone treats you like an asshole. No one gives you arguments for why you should side with them instead they only sort of assume that you do. Because of this it becomes less about the underlying conflicts between ideologies and more about avoiding characters you dislike. For example I went the anarchy route the second time through my game because I wanted to avoid House and that equally annoying person you get the latter NCR quests from (I forget her name but she essentially just yells at you and acts like this is full metal jacket the game).

    I also think they really dropped the ball on the NCR. Theoretically they offer stability, democracy and prosperity but they’re also corrupt, stretched to thin and most NCR citizens don’t care about places like Vegas. The problem is that we’re just told about this. I took all the NCR quests I could and I never once got the impression that they were all that corrupt (everyone in the wasteland is corrupt but NCR didn’t stand out is what I’m getting at), to thinly stretched or didn’t care about the people. Actually except for the followers of the apocalypse NCR were the only ones who did anything for anyone with their police force, jails, concrete manufacturing and electricity. There is something to be said about a government who sees itself as “your” government without your consent but compared to all the other factions NCR seem like an army of messiahs. Because I never saw the faults in NCR first hand the complaints from the NPCs seemed less like indictments of NCR and more like the NPCs were a bunch of whiny assholes. This also lessened the impact of the major choice of the game since to me it seemed like the NCR was the only rational choice… Of course I still went with the wild card ending, I’d rather irrationally doom the future of the citizens of Vegas than take more quests from that idiot.

    • Hitch says:

      I agree with your assessment of the NCR. I went with them even though they’re certainly no better than anyone else. But the biggest arguments against them could be dismissed as, “Everyone complains about the government. No matter how good they have it.”

      I would have gone Wild Card and put myself in charge, but I didn’t want the responsibility.

      • I think the only real ‘official’ proof is from the end of that really long ranger station quest, where you find out from a veteran just how badly he thinks things are going, and it’s a very honest, moving performance, which you practically never get anywhere else in the game.

        Oh, and the situations at Mojave outpost and bitter Springs do a pretrty good job at showing the NCR is understaffed and thinly spread. One of the brotherhood scouts makes a similar comment regarding the fact nobody’s cleaned up the NCRCF yet.

        In fact, now I think about it, almost all the NCR quests are about them being undestaffed and needing outside help, you just don’t notice because that’s what you expect from an RPG.

        • swimon says:

          You’re right, every station and position they have is understaffed but that always seemed like the realities of war to me not that the NCR is spread to thin. I mean if the NCR is spread to thin the problem would be that it’s inefficient with inadequate infrastructure and excessive red tape, that a few places gets forgotten and lost. To little manpower wouldn’t really be a symptom of spreading to thin since you can recruit from wherever you spread to. Adequate forces with inadequate training would be a believable scenario but except for that quest where you specifically deal with the worst of the worst the NCR seem well trained.

          Really what these quests seemed to imply to me was that the NCR was in a tough spot with powerful enemies not that there was a problem with the NCR itself. Their problems seem external but the opposition towards the NCR and the central choice in the game hinge on the player perceiving them as internal.

    • BenD says:

      Caesar does explain his ideology, methods and beliefs if you give him a chance to do so. His dialogue is easily the most intellectual in the game. If you give him dumb answers, he treats you like you’re an idiot – but he’ll STILL explain his theories of leadership and government, as if he’s not above explaining complex things to an idiot (as long as it’s HIS idiot). For this reason I really enjoyed serving Caesar; I wish that House and the NCR had been given some way to befriend them enough that they’d treat the Courier with such respect.

      • swimon says:

        I never really gave ceasar a chance to be honest. I saw “women are slaves” and I thought well there’s nothing that justifies this so I never tried to talk to him really.

      • Someone says:

        I liked that he had a really detailed plan, which he explained to you if you did his questline (and which you would never hear otherwise), but at the end of the day it’s nothing solid, really. It’s just a bunch of vague philosophical concepts thrown together, which Caesar hopes will work but doesn’t seem to know exactly how.

  32. Museli says:

    I’ve taken control of Vegas myself twice, aided the NCR twice, and helped Mr House and Kaizarrr once each. On my first playthough, I didn’t know much about the possible endings, but as soon as I found Yes Man, I said ‘yep, this is the one for me’. I’d learned enough about the other three factions to know I didn’t really like any of them much, and decided I was the lesser evil.

  33. Eärlindor says:

    I pretty much stuck with Mr. House up till the point he wanted me to kill the Brotherhood.
    I have a hard time bringing myself to hate the Brotherhood, I don’t know why. I also entered their bunker for the first time with Veronica, so they were never really jerks to me.
    But since I was so close to the end game for House Always Wins, I went ahead, saved the game, and did the House ending before going back. I’ll kill House at some point, but I’m not finished running around.
    I also have a NCR and/or Wildcard ending planned out.

    • Hitch says:

      The Brotherhood are supposed to be scary guys in powered armor with advanced weapons that cold-bloodedly kill anyone who shows any potential at all for being a threat to them.

      As soon as they have faces and personalities, that goes away and they aren’t someone to be frightened of anymore. If they’re willing to explain what their goals are and admit that they might have to accept a new recruit or ally before they die out, they become downright reasonable.

      • Eärlindor says:

        That’s probably part of it. But I also never really knew the Brotherhood of Steel for who they were suppose to be since, admittedly, my first introduction to the Fallout universe was Fallout 3.

      • Someone says:

        Problem is, they aren’t willing. Veronica’s quest revolves around the fact that their ways will ultimately lead them to die out, but they are unwilling to change them no matter how convincing a case you put up. I think the only way to ensure a future of any kind for the organization is to get them allied with the NCR.

  34. Mortuorum says:

    On my first playthrough (the one I consider canonical, even though it makes no difference to anyone but me), I went Wild Card. Like so many others, none of the other options really worked for me. I also played through the House ending, though I felt guilty for wiping out the Brotherhood base.

  35. Ambitious Sloth says:

    I don’t know what weirder, the reference that Rutskarns makes to Brazil or the fact that I just watched that movie for the first time last Sunday and was thinking the same exact thing.

  36. RTBones says:

    I am nearly there (first playthrough). I am on the NCR path. Currently, I am to go either get the Great Khans to join, or deal with them.

    I actually stopped playing the main quest for a while because I wanted to figure out a way to deal with Deathclaws, as they seem (to me) much more powerful in this game. Only thing I have figured out so far is to run away from them if they are in a group

    • Andrew says:

      The ones in and around Quarry Junction are literally twice as tough as the normal ones. I was never able to kill them in an honest fight- it was either sniping, or hooking myself up to an IV containing every drug in my inventory (especially Turbo, which turns melee characters into a unstoppable whirlwind of death).

  37. Kana says:

    I went for Wild Card the first time I finished, and had almost no help from anyone because of a few screw ups. I got the Boomers and Brotherhood of Steel, but the latter I only made friendly with so I can cross my eyes and pretend they were the enclave. I mean, not even Josh could join them and he blew up the Brotherhood home base, so the best I can do is pretend.

    All the other tribes I ended up ignoring, either because I screwed up and ran out of options, like the Kahns, or just couldn’t deal with them anymore, like the Omertas. Oh well, with an army of robots and a B-52 bomber on my side, who needs friends?

    Special note to my friend’s playthrough. She complained about not being able to speech-check her way through the Brotherhood option and being about 20exp short of a level (but stuck in the room). A few .addnpc commands later, and I solved all her problems for her. I mean, those Deathclaws were pretty angry, but if you need to kill the Brotherhood and orbital canon’s aren’t available, might as well go for the next best thing.

  38. burningdragoon says:

    I’ve said it here before I believe, but I never actually finished the game because I didn’t like the situation I had gotten stuck in.

    Never got flagged for NCR questline.
    Murdered Caesar and the whole Legion camp after doing the chip stuff for House.
    Did all the tribe missions from Yes Man.
    Didn’t want to kill the BoS (mostly related to Veronica), so I killed House.
    I kept getting warnings that the NCR wouldn’t help me if I kept doing stuff for Yes Man.
    Basically I got bored after both House and Caesar were dead and didn’t have the NCR to keep the story moving and didn’t care for the independent branch.

  39. X2-Eliah says:

    Twice the independent route, once.. House, with leaving the BoS alone (or was it NCR?).. Basically, I play a good guy, more or less, so going with Kaizarrr is out of the picture, and.. Yeah, now I forgot whether I ditched house for NCR, or NCR for house. They both have issues, frankly, and the independent route seems to be the best.

  40. BenD says:

    I like how Cuftbert nicks a key out of the pocket of the guy who just searched him for weapons.

  41. Slothful says:

    Why is Mr. House so emaciated? That is not what I’d expect technology for keeping someone alive indefinitely would do. Has it not been giving him any nutrients for the last 50 years?

  42. Kelly says:

    Incidentally you absolutely can say “oh I’m killing you for Caesar” or whatever. Josh even moused over the Yes Man option for awhile (the response is something like “your vanity project, doomed to failure!”

    But yes there’s not really much option to argue with him about his reasonings, much like how you can’t really argue directly with ANY of the other faction heads. Unless you count Oliver and Lanius. As with most cases amongst faction leaders, you can only ask about his point of view.

    And the only tolerable Brotherhood members are Christine and Veronica. The rest are huge assholes and idiots, who I murder with glee.

    • Someone says:

      Well, you can argue House’s methods as you’re following his questline, but he just brushes aside anything you say because you just can’t understand the genius of his incredibly complex master plan. My favorite moment in the game is when you get to Fortification Hill bunker, link up with House and tell him you’re gonna blow up his robots. The way he tries to threaten you into activating them even as he realizes he has no control over you and is completely powerless in the face of your whim… you can practically hear his massive ego collapsing on itself, it’s priceless.

  43. McNutcase says:

    I love how the greeter is so concerned about the refined image they wish to project, and yet when he stops ganking the camera the very first thing I see is a guy in overalls waving a shotgun around. Very refined, guys, having this random redneck in your tux-and-ballgown party.

  44. DNTZ says:

    I’ve done them all – Plus a hardcore mode playthrough where I went with NCR just because it’s easier.

    One weird thing I noticed was that the NCR path seems buggier than the others… I had a startling number of freezes and crashes in the endgame. A breathtaking number in fact, even for this game.

    Another weird thing… Hope you aren’t a big fan of the Followers as it will not really end well no matter what you do. The Legion ending is the best ending for them, which I wasn’t expecting.

    I’m doing a “shits and giggles” playthrough right now – trying to get the achievements for picking fifty pockets and winning 30 (even though you actually have to win 35) games of caravan. But I really really want to do a Hardcore mode Legion playthrough – it seems like it would be extra rough because after a point with the legion everybody hates you so much that you don’t have very many good hidey holes in civilized areas, not to mention that the legion’s quest line is much shorter than any of the other ones – you start to cut off access to quest givers really fast with the legion, what with them requiring you to be such a horrible, evil cunt.

  45. Fang says:

    First time: Independent with Yesman and was pretty much “nice” to both sides(NCR and Legion)
    Second time(aka current): Independent with House and killing the NCR on sight save for the Strip ones while kind of being “nice” to the Legion.

  46. S says:

    My currect playthrough I’ve got a lovely Seven working her way into each groups hearts before she claws them out. So yeah ‘Wild Card’ but first she needs the caps, influence, and power. So when she had the time Seirra Madre and Zion here comes the whirlwind. I’m finishing Dead Money today and with her new prize House is no longer needed.

    First playthrough was with the mentally damaged Clark. High Strength, Endurance, Agility, decent charisma and perception, low intelligence. He met people they tell him things he do them. This resulted in Dead Goodsprings and Powder Gangers, giving dog tags to man in shiny armor, petting the dog headed man, talking about laser eyes with pretty girl that don’t like him so he break her neck. Find other preety girl, she stay, he help her kill mean people. She help him break mean man. Got doggy used it to kill man trying to kill doggy headed friends allies. Blew up Repeconn because funny ‘Not Ghoul’ said to. Found grandma reminded her medicine bad. Blew up shiny men found other people who eat people reminded them people taste good. Killed man in tower and ate him, failed operating on nice old man felt bad ate him later, blew up chew chew. In the end he stormed Vegas with the Legate.

  47. Mailbox says:

    First playthrough I used a central save point before killing benny to revert back to and got all four endings with the same character (Achievement purposes). House, then NCR, then Yes Man, and finally Legion. Every subsequent character I have created I planned out which route they would take as part of their character and have done one for each ending.

  48. Sozac says:

    Yeah I went for all the endings. My favorite was going with the Legion. It was my melee character, and the only ending that was a little challenging.I was a little lower level, but I fell into a lot of the traps and if stimpaks weren’t so abundant I would’ve died. I used like 20 stimpaks.I ran right into the sniper headshot and the heavies wrecked me and it was all around fun.

    Just wondering, what everyone else’s favorite was.

  49. poiumty says:

    Did House’s ending, even though I really didn’t want to kill the Brotherhood. But at the end of the day the choice I was stuck with was either House or myself, and I’d be dead way sooner then there’d be no one left to run Vegas. So regardless of the Brotherhood, House turned out to be the best choice.

    The funny thing is I got the enclave remnants to “fight for the NCR” then they totally turned against me when I went with House. Had to kill them all. Not great.

  50. Daemian Lucifer says:

    House for me.Yeah he is a dick,but he is a smart dictator,which I genuinely believe to be the best option for a nation to grow.I dont want to replay the game before all the dlcs come out.Im not sure if Ill try just the yes men then or the ncr as well,but Im sure I wont do legion,because I prefer being female.

    Also america,fuck yeah!!

  51. Sleeping Dragon says:

    On my single playthrough I went independent but on the non-essential stuff I usually kept with the NCR. Largely because I usually assume that the devs want you to play with the “good” faction and so this offers the most explanation and background info. I think House would be an ending of choice for me if he gave more “amoral genius” and less “condescending asshole” vibe.

    I plan to only replay the game once the big DLCs are all released and I’m thinking of going the Legion route simply because it sounds like the most different one and I would like to see the “evil” side of some quests.

  52. kreek says:

    last time i played
    i was playing a female who did the ceasers legion ending

    it didnt make a lot of sence at all and ultimately the end left me with a bad taste

    next time i play i think im going to do something that makes more sense

    • krellen says:

      Do they make a female Courier a slave after it’s all said and done?

      • Someone says:

        No. They mint a coin with Courier’s image on it. I believe that’s all you get, either way.

        The sexism thing is kinda disappointing. I always thought it stemmed from Caesar’s personal chauvinism, but I played through his questline as a female character and he never once mentioned my gender. In fact, the only halfway significant change I’ve noticed is that you can’t fight in their little arena, and the arena dude keeps telling you to go do the dishes or something.

  53. Reet says:

    My first playthrough was independent because it’s awesome. I have started a ton of playthroughs since but I haven’t finished any of them. Currently I am right at the end of the NCR line and I actually just did the brotherhood quest and I did the whole negotiating thing because I’m playing good so why the hell not. I never actually went to the brotherhood without veronica so I don’t know how big of a bunch of assholes they are.

  54. Ramsus says:

    I went the Wild Card route and haven’t played another game of it yet. If I do I’ll probably go the House path and then the NCR. And I guess if I got really sick of liking myself I’d do Legion.

  55. Jonathan says:

    Off topic comment: Just got an e-mail from Bioware that the decade-old NWN forum server may have been hacked, and hackers may have gotten access to passwords, phone numbers, etc. Yeesh.

  56. superglucose says:

    I played NCR the first time and I really, really liked it. The NCR was kind of… they’re mostly good people who are mostly trying to do good things. There are, for sure, a few bad eggs among them who screw it up for everyone else, and more than a couple times you end up shafted by them, but they’re big. What do you expect?

    Basically my line of reasoning went like this:

    “I don’t really want the NCR to run the region, they’re too formal and stiff for my tastes.”

    “I don’t want Mr. House to run the region because he’s a dick and would make the worst sort of dictator.”

    “Speaking of dictators, Caesar is an even WORSE dictator… it’s like a Mr. House that believes in sexism and genocide. Well, more genocide at least.”

    “Hmmm… Yes Man could be interesting… but I don’t really want to put a robot in charge. Especially not one who has previously been hacked and can’t say “no.”” (I knew right from meeting Yes Man that I wouldn’t actually be in charge of New Vegas, that only Yes Man would be.)

    Given the four options the NCR was the only one that my reasons for not wanting them in charge were superficial and a “Eh I just don’t like them.” But I really, really respect obsidian for the “Lesser of two, er, four evils” approach. None of the options are “good.” The only real issue I have is that one of the options is clearly just “bad” (stupid Legion).

    C’mon Skyrim, bring this type of writing back to Elder Scrolls!

  57. I did all of the endings. All of them.

    They all turned out mostly good, but I liked the independant one best.

  58. CalDazar says:

    NCR & PROUD!

    Really I think the NCR is the best of a bad lot. I mean it’s not as if each group is nothing but bad, except maybe the legion because I’m not the antagonist of a Stieg Larsson novel and thus don’t hate women, but helping the NCR helps the largest number of people.

  59. Thor says:

    I did Wild Card on my first playthrough, then House. I’m on my third playthrough and I sort of want to finish the game siding with either the NCR or Legion, but neither have given me any reason to want to help their cause.

  60. axiomaticbadger says:

    Obviously the problem isn’t killing hookers. It’s killing hookers without a permit

    In the post apocalyptic wasteland, flocks of hookers are rare and are regularly tagged to track thier migration patterns.

  61. Someone says:

    I ended up killing House, and even though I wasn’t exactly thrilled about his attitude it was mostly by accident, or rather out of curiosity.

    I was playing a high Science character and at some point I went looking around House’s lair to find his hidden room, mostly for giggles. Checked all the books around the place I did, and only then noticed the little monitor hanging from the inconspicuous wall. Then I started getting flashbacks about messing with the Shi “Emperor” and hacked my way to the cryopod.

    I just couldn’t believe that after all the hype, tarting up House in all the E3 interviews and press-releases and whatnot, they would just let me kill him, just like that, out of curiosity. And I did, and then almost reverted to an earlier save but thought to myself – what the hell, I might as well stick with it. Sided with the NCR, probably got the happiest possible ending.

    I really dislike Great Khans. They aren’t quite as bad as the Boomers, but they are still bad and I was planning on killing them all, and only allied them with the NCR because they asked me to. My main problem is that the game seems to want you to believe that they are good people wronged by the NCR, but they are not. They are, and let me make that perfectly clear, raiders. They come from the Khans, another group of raiders killing every single one of which was a perfectly acceptable, even good ending. They openly admit themselves that they attacked NCR settlements and caravans, they burned, raped, pillaged and they long to return to that lifestyle. Sure, NCR killing their women and children wasn’t cool, but it’s a wartime atrocity and they brought it on themselves.They started the war. And they have the gall to blame everything bad that happened to them on NCR. The Followers seem fascinated by their tribal traditions and culture, even though this is a destructive culture of violence and chaos. Everyone is always talking about how poorly treated they are, being stuck in Red Rock Canyon, and always forgets that they used to be bandits and murderers, and now became drug dealers misusing the generous and selfless gift of knowledge the naive Followers provided them with.

  62. Marlowe says:

    I appreciated the Adam West reference, young man. A line which I often recalled while trying to dispose of bodies behind the backs of patrolling guards in the Thief series.

    So Mr House turns out to be a hybrid of Lucius de Beers and Davros. A shame one can’t give him a new job as a dancer in the casino.

  63. Gilf says:

    The first time through, I honestly didn’t know the game was ending when it did. I got the House ending, but I had been hoping to murder him (as I do to overbearing, unbearably smug people) and get the wild card ending. Sadly, I wasn’t paying attention in the final hour or so of gameplay, so House got control of everything.

  64. WEs1180 says:

    I haven’t actually played through fallout new vegas…

    I should probably do that sometime, huh?
    I do actually have it on steam, so its there for when I get round to it.

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