Fallout 4 EP23: Hancock for President

By Shamus
on Jul 28, 2016
Filed under:
Spoiler Warning


Link (YouTube)

Here’s a spoiler for Josh: I watched the episode and I SEE WHAT YOU DID.

I never teamed up with former mayor MacCready, so I can’t really comment on what they’ve done with him. I hear people say that he’s actually a pretty good companion, but I favor stealth gameplay and companions do not mix well with stealth. I thought it was surprising that he was in the game, but it doesn’t even make my list of top 100 Fallout 4 gripes. I mean, if I was given the choice between:

  1. Re-work an unpopular character to give them another chance. (MacCready in Fallout 4.)
  2. Hopelessly butcher an existing popular character by bending their story into nonsense and mercilessly flanderizing their personality quirks. (Harold in Fallout 3.)

I will take #1 every time.

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From the Archives:

  1. Gruhunchously says:

    Wow. You guys really ought to treat your old man with more respect than pranking him behind his back. Kids these days.

  2. MrGuy says:

    Shamus likes Little Lamplight!
    Shamus likes Little Lamplight!

  3. Christopher says:

    I wasn’t feeling the invisibility at first, but it’s really great that he says “PSST!” while stealthing to get the companion’s attention.

    On another note, Hancock really does seem nice after that initial stabbing scene. It reminds me of those otherwise kinda nice Bioware companions that would be introduced by them murdering someone brutally or putting heads on poles off-screen. Of course, some of them were bad to the core.

    • James Porter says:

      The “Pssst!” Stuff is pretty great honestly, its like this beautiful marriage of cheesy Hollywood movie whispering and an actually tense bit of strategizing before pouncing some baddies. Like you can laugh at it since it should be obvious how loud you are, but I have to admit it sometimes works on me, and I find myself worrying if someone is going to spot me and Nick while I offload some junk.

    • Wide And Nerdy® says:

      I like it too. It kind of makes Hancock a smiling crocodile and gives him a bit of a dangerous edge if he can do that so casually while being so nice.

      Plus, the dialog gave me the impress that this one guy was constantly doing this.

      And its a place where that dissonance of the setting kicks in. I would think most settlements can’t afford to have a system of incarceration. So you have to punish in other ways, banishment, execution, cutting rations, etc. A show of brutal justice helps keep people in line.

  4. MrGuy says:

    Also, re: Legendaries.

    The problem is that there’s nothing “legendary” about them. There’s no reason why they’d be memorable.

    “Davey, did your grandpa ever tell you about the time he killed a wild dog with, like, twice as much health as usual? That’s where I got this silver ashtray!”

    They’re literally a walking oxymoron.

    • Izicata says:

      I think they saw people talking about the Legendary Deathclaw from New Vegas, said “We can do that!”, and failed miserably. The thing that made the Legendary Deathclaw a legend was that it was in a very out of the way cavern you never get a quest for. Unless you just randomly stumbled across it, you found it by hearing someone talk about it on a forum, in real life, or on a wiki; i.e. hearing or researching the legend of the Legendary Deathclaw. Also it wasn’t a fucking mole rat.

      • Not to mention that cave was filled with OTHER Deathclaws and the unique weapon you found there at least made sense in being there, since the implication was that a BoS member had been sent out to clear it with Mercy and failed, so it got left there since they probably weren’t going to throw away another person to get it back.

      • Gruhunchously says:

        To be honest, I actually quite like the idea of a super powerful Legendary creature that you can just run across at any point. One of my most remembered moments from New Vegas was when the Deathclaw Alpha Male from Quarry Junction glitched out and ended up in an obscure corner in Hidden Valley in steady. I was just wandering along, doing some quests for the Brotherhood, when it suddenly emerged from behind a rock and one-shotted me in a matter of seconds. It spooked me so much that I avoided that whole area of the map for multiple play-throughs.

        It sort of highlights another another Bethesda/Obsidian difference. Bethesda is just fine having Deathclaws spawn in random places, even if they have no reason to be there. It’s gamey, but it keeps you on your toes as you wander. Obsidian has the Bad Places where the Deathclaws live that have stories behind them and that you can go to when you feel ready.

        I think a merge between those two philosophies would be perfectly serviceable, as long as you had some decent worldbuilding to go with it. Have some nasty creature that could randomly spawn across a large are at anytime, but also have it be part of the world that people acknowledge. Have NPCs in the cities talk whisper about the Legendary Bloatfly that stalks the land, and let the play ask them about it. Give it some folklore, have people talk about how only the bravest dare venture it’s hunting ground, or how maybe they wouldn’t mind allying with the Brotherhood if these newcomers can get rid of it for them. Perhaps do the Dark Souls thing where you find it and it’s covered in bullet holes and has broken Shishkebabs sticking out of it.

        • Izicata says:

          Bethesda is not okay with letting Deathclaws just spawn in random places. That’s why they level scale everything; so you never get into a fight you can’t win. You might find a Deathclaw-shaped actor right outside of the tutorial, but it’ll be a level 1 Wimpy Nerfclaw.

          • Ninety-Three says:

            No, Fallout 4 uses level-scaling, but you can still face overleveled enemies. Basically, most areas are set to spawn a certain enemy type, and some enemy types (deathclaws, super mutants, robots) have no level-1-scaled version. If you hug the west wall of the map and head south to the glowing sea, you’ll pass several places that spawn level-scaled deathclaws: Alpha Deathclaw, Glowing Deathclaw, whatever, but always at least a Regular Deathclaw.

            That said, Deathclaws get way less scary in this game the moment you realize you can outrun them. The thing that terrified me for most of the game was Mr. Gutsys. The massive HP of a Deathclaw, plus a ranged attack that feels like it has Deathclaw DPS.

      • GloatingSwine says:

        There was a Legendary Bloatfly though.

        In Old World Blues where things were supposed to be silly.

        (It was ridiculous, had almost the most HP of any enemy in the game and fired an AoE plasma burst at you)

        • Coming_Second says:

          Sniped that sucker from the passageway. Never even worked out where I was.

          • Wide And Nerdy® says:

            See? And it was that one specific Bloatfly in that one place. A bunch of people here probably know the one you’re talking about. We can picture that cavern and everything else thats there. We remember the perk we got for killing it (it was a perk right? I guess that undermines my point.) It was a special event, not a random spawn that dropped unusual loot.

            Probably doesn’t help that I got the mod that lets you craft legendary upgrades (at very high material cost.) because I have no patience for wearing a random assortment of gear.

            Maybe I’m doing this wrong. Bethesda seems to think you should be wearing randomly cobbled together outfits whereas I want a clean well tailored suit with invisible combat armor.

            • GloatingSwine says:

              That also brings up the other problem with Fallout 4’s legenday equipment.

              Most of it is trash.

              There are a very limited range of affixes which are worth having at all, especially on armour where Shadowed is the important thing to have. Most of the ones on guns are massively overshadowed by Double Shot or Instigating, the effect of stats feels minor and chameleon screws the UI up (and Shadowed is almost as good anyway, standing in any amount of shadow makes you functionally invisible even if it’s the shadow of a tree trunk ten feet away in broad daylight).

              • Wide And Nerdy® says:

                The “legendaries feel minor” aspect I agree is a problem. The unbalanced aspect not so much. I think its fine to have some legendaries be more powerful than others in a game with randomized loot drops

                • Ninety-Three says:

                  Power disparities wouldn’t be such a problem if it felt like more of a smooth gradient, but instead we’ve got a system where 90% of legendaries are not just minor but completely useless (leather right arm with with 10% damage reduction against super mutants, sniper rifle with unlimited magazine size), a handful of cases where a relevant bonus combines with good base stats (stealth armour, double shot on a gun you’d actually use), and 1% that completely break the game (damage procs on automatic weapons).

                  The volume of garbage or irrelevant-to-your-build items makes the system a microcosm of Fallout 4 as a whole: An engine for dispensing disappointment, where the rare moments of joy are more about a brief respite from suckitude than anything truly good.

                  • Wide And Nerdy® says:

                    I don’t think its an engine for that per se. They just need to tweak the stuff being handed out.

                    • Dork Angel says:

                      Sometimes it works if you get one you like. I have a 10mm pistol that adds 25 points of bleed damage. It’s fully upgraded and silenced and I call it Dum Dum. I had a double-shot 50 cal. sniper rifle for a while but then found a Combat rifle that does explosive damage as well. Upgraded it to .308 ammo with scope and silencer and it’s called Bam Bam. The rest of the crap I just give to random settlers and companions.

            • MrGuy says:

              This is exactly my point.

              I loved the Legendary Bloatfly, because it was deliberately incongruous, and truly out of the ordinary. It was memorable, unexpected, and special. It actually was a tough fight that was out of proportion of what you’d expect. And it was deliberately set up in a specific place where you’d have specific expectations that it subverted.

              Then Bethesda said “Hey, we can have legendary versions of trash monsters too!” and put in….this. They missed everything that made the Legendary Bloatfly special and interesting.

              • Michael says:

                Alternately, Massachusetts simply has really terrible stories. They’ve resorted to telling stories about that one legendary radroach, or the legendary mirelurk larva, that’s claimed all those lives.

                Worst part is, when Bethesda deliberately plays with that joke in Far Harbor, it’s kinda funny.

    • ehlijen says:

      Indeed, Fallout 4 uses the word legendary the same way Ubisoft uses the word iconic: with no regard to its meaning.

      The deathclaw in the witch museum? That was legendary, ie memorable. But it’s not a ‘legendary’ creature, it’s a level adjusted regular deathclaw spawn (with a +X on the spawn table to make sure it’s tough).

      For something to be legendary, two things need to happen:
      Either the encounter must be carefully choreographed to occur and the player prepared (Mirelurk King in the ??? caves in New Vegas (where you find all the log pages on the way in), the deathclaw in the witch museum, The butcher in diablo 1, first deathclaw in Fallout 1…).
      Or enough of the encounter parameters must be random so that truly unique outcomes can occur (original XCOM, most of diablo 1 and 2 (dunno 3 well)…).

      Fallout 4 tries to straddle the middle, and it doesn’t work. There is no randomness to the world itself, it’s all pregenerated. There aren’t a lot of places where legendaries are the boss in a mini dungeon or part of a quest or even alluded to by people beforehand either. You’ll never encounter an unusual foe/location combination by chance, nor will you encounter most legendaries in cool scripted fights.

      Procedurally generated content in a preset environment just feels like the Dragon Age 2 asset reuse all over again to me.

      • Loonyyy says:

        Not sure that I can agree. There are some chance encounters that work. I remember in Fallout 3, I was travelling on some quest, and I walked past a square. A vertiberd came and dropped off Enclave troops and one of their Deathclaws. It was the first time I’d fought one, and it was tough, and it was a really memorable fight. I remember when Dogmeat got stuck in the level geometry (Stupid glitch) and I fast travelled to Vault 101 to wait for him. I saw him running back, and then I realised, that, somehow, there was a Deathclaw on the path, and Dogmeat was going to set him off. The fact that they posed a good chance of killing your companions, especially Dogmeat, really improved it.

        Areas like the Deathclaw quarry were good too, I think having some of both is a good idea. It is like reusing content, but it’s just adding a random spawn where you’re moving which could create a memorable encounter. I think it’s more obnoxious in say, Skyrim, where you’ll get missions to the samey dungeons, and then afterwards, you’ll get radiant quests to do the same thing, sometimes even to the same location for a respawned enemy. That felt really cheap, those quests feel like they’re a punishment just for picking them up.

        • Ninety-Three says:

          The bigger problem is that legendaries aren’t memorable. They have twice (I think? It can’t be more than twice) as much health as a normal enemy, they drop a random piece of legendary gear which has a 90% chance to be complete garbage, and because the game seems to roll legendary chance per enemy, you’re far more likely to see a Legendary Raider Mook than a Legendary Deathclaw, because there are a zillion times more Radier Mooks than Deathclaws. And doubling the health of one of the dozen Raider Mooks idling in the next room doesn’t make the fight substantially harder.

  5. Chris Davies says:

    You have to wonder, does the bartender pitch every customer on casual murder? How does that work? Here’s your beer, mate… and oh, by the way, if you fancy offing some mooks then I’ve got just the job for you! No? Oh well, fair enough. What can I get, sir?

    You can imagine the same quest in the hands of someone who cared even slightly about making their world seem real. Maybe the guy who tries to extort money from you at the door gets pissy when you refuse and attacks you, you kill him and get arrested and the mayor commutes your death sentence on the condition you do some dirty work for him. Anything but a British robot assuming you’re a hired gun without knowing a thing about you.

    • Echo Tango says:

      They could have even kept the bartender setup, and just made it a bit smarter. Like, you can ask for a beer, general information about the town, or if there’s any jobs to be had. A barman has the ability to offer a wide assortment of quests, since many people could come and go from the drinking establishment, and tell their tale of woe to him. Maybe an old widow farmer needs you to clear her cellar out of rats, since she can barely keep up with the animals and garden. A scientist needs you to track down a rare component for him, so he can repair his experimental robot. Or, “If a person such as yourself didn’t mind embarking on…morally grey endeavors, there might be a person willing to hire. I believe they had an acquaintance that needed…talking to.” for players who want a murder quest.

      • Viktor says:

        Or even just open it with a line like “Hey, if you know how to use that [player’s equipped weapon], I might have something you can do.” At least that makes it seem less like a quest vending machine.

        • Matt Downie says:

          That would probably cause problems for the player who specialised in unarmed combat. It’s a downside of giving you character flexibility, and the right to do things any order, and then also trying to make everything available to everyone.

    • MrGuy says:

      I guess I didn’t mind this so much, simply because it’s a pretty classic RPG trope that you see in every dwarven inn and gnomish tavern in every D&D campaign ever.

      A stranger stumbled in, they look like they know how to handle themselves, and because the questgiver needs their business handled on the QT it makes a lot of sense to assign the task to someone who drifted in and not someone who lives there. Hey, buddy, looking to make a few coin?

      The bartender makes a point here of saying he’s offering it to you because you’re new in town, he’s not really supposed to do this in his own town, and “he can’t use his regulars” on this one.

      Not that FO3 was exactly subtle with it, but it’s not at all dissimilar from what Mr. Burke did in FO3 – hey, here’s someone who’s a free agent. Let’s see if they want our quest.

      I do think having the quest “unlock” through dialogue a bit would be awesome – maybe have him feel you out, and only proceed to the quest if you answer a certain way. That’s counter to the “don’t miss out!” design philosophy that (IMO) craps all over a LOT of otherwise great roleplay opportunities, and this one is no different. But this specific instance is a lot less jarring to me than a lot of others, because it doesn’t feel out of character for an RPG.

  6. James Porter says:

    So Chris brought it up, but I think I kind of like how its up in the air if Robots are really sentient in this universe. Using Whitechapel Charlie as an example, I have actaully never done his quest because I don’t really trust he can make the call over who lives and who dies. He may have a personality, but there are a ton of things about robots that could make their worldview skewed.

    Maybe its more that I’ve been thinking a lot about Robot stories, and how every single one ends up being about how it finds a soul or something. Personally, id like to see a story about a robot apocalypse that didn’t start because a human made a robot sad, just that they gave it the wrong directions.
    Weirdly enough Good Robot kinda falls into this, but Ive been doing research, so if people have recommendations I’d love to hear em!

      • MrGuy says:

        I don’t think War Games was really on the point he’s getting at.

        War Games turns on a computer making a determination that a nuclear war cannot be won, and therefore realizing that starting a war is a losing proposition. While there’s a heavily implied “sentience”/emotional connection to Joshua, the “A strange game. The only winning move is not to play” line is purely game theoretic analysis on potential strategies. There’s no “but it’s wrong!” aspect.

    • Echo Tango says:

      This non-fiction book has several chapters dedicated to how general-purpose AI will kill us because of poor instructions. Actually, it’s worse than that, because there’s only a very narrow range of ways to get AI right, and all other paths lead to some kind of catastrophic event. Truly frightening stuff. :S

      • Veylon says:

        Like so much of AI, it boils down to limits and common sense. Human beings – most of us – implicitly understand that we want or are ordered to do is only so important and that going too far to achieve it is bad and that it only needs to be accomplished to a certain degree.

        The problem with imparting this concept to an AI is a problem that exists even among people: rules lawyering. Sure, you can tell the hyperintelligent AI that it’s not allowed to make X, Y, or Z happen, but it’s a hyperintelligent AI and can come up with a zillion ways to technically abide by your restrictions while completely negating them in practice.

        • MichaelGC says:

          This Computerphile is very good on the ‘overachiever’ aspect! :D

          https://youtu.be/tcdVC4e6EV4

        • Incunabulum says:

          The problem is those *implicit* limits are there because they’re already programmed into us.

          As humans there’s a ton of unstated stuff that we share in common in our minds and which limit the damage any one of us can do as ultimately what’s bad for everyone is bad for anyone.

          But if you’re starting from a blank slate, all that stuff has to be programmed in from scratch. And we don’t even know a fraction of the pre-programmed stuff in the human mind and are closer to enabling a self-motivated AI than we are to understanding our own underpinnings.

      • potatoejenkins says:

        ‘Golem XIV’ and ‘The Invincible’ by Stanislaw Lem deal both with A.I.. Both are fiction (and the former might seem a little bit dry in comparison), both go different ways.

        What I like about Lem in general is, he seems to try not to project human emotions/desires onto the A.I. ‘characters’ in his books. It’s very apparent with Golem XIV. Sure, it’s impossible since the writer is human, but he tries. I like Lem.

    • Daemian Lucifer says:

      [nitpick]Sapient.Dogs are sentient,people are sapient.[/nitpick].

      Anyway:
      You should really read I,robot.It has robots that are built sensibly,in that they will never harm a human intentionally,and even when they do it unintentionally they break down.Then in the last story you get these robots actually take over the human world because they took their programing to the extreme and want to protect humans from themselves.But dont watch the movie,its shit.

      Also,there is the movie colossus:the forbin project,where americans and russians build a couple of war computers that would help them annihilate the other one,and then the computers actually make an alliance and enslave the humans.

      • Ciennas says:

        If that movie hadn’t been named I Robot, would you still loathe it? It was originally something else in development until … I think the Asimov Estate threatened to sue them because it sounded similar so they just whole hogged it into being an Asimov setting. Sort of.

        I thought it was still a fun movie. The biggest eye roll was the blatant product placement, but I was glad that they did it at the beginning and got it over with.

        I also appreciated a genuinely good robot character. Those are exceedingly rare in Hollywood flicks.

        • Incunabulum says:

          I do think that movie’s greatest flaw was its title.

          Its not a bad ‘AI goes wrong’ flick otherwise.

        • Daemian Lucifer says:

          I still would think of it as a bad movie,but not an insultingly bad one.I did like the design and movement of the robots in that one and I like Will Smith in practically everything.But the story is meh,the product placement is too blatant,the main characters motivation is iffy,the villain is dumb* and the conservation of ninjutsu is way over the top.

          *And its a machine,so being dumb is even more prominent.Especially if you are a fan of the stories like the two Ive linked above.

          • Ciennas says:

            Oh I agree it wasn’t flawless. But it was fun, and the robots were all good, though the villain was good in the worst possible way.

            I really liked Sonny, and am sorry to see so few of his ilk in mainstream media.

        • Lachlan the Mad says:

          I think the story isn’t quite so sinister — Alex Proyas wanted to do I, Robot, couldn’t get the rights, and started work on a sci-fi script called HardWired. Then they got the rights to I, Robot, but they’d already done some pre-production work and casting on HardWired (including Will Smith), so they welded it together with the I, Robot concept.

          (I have an aunt who’s friends with Proyas, but unfortunately I don’t speak to that aunt any more, so I can’t slap Proyas for Gods of Egypt).

  7. Tever says:

    In what way was Harold flanderized? I never played the original games, so I’m not really familiar with him. I thought he had kind of a cool idea behind him, even though it was completely Bethesda’d.

    ETA: Apologies if this is answered in the episode. Haven’t been able to watch it, and probably won’t until next week or more.

    • Aitch says:

      He was some of the best writing and voice acting in the game. A guy exposed to FEV before becoming a ghoul, friends with the main villain before either were mutated, and very intelligent but made eccentric from being alive for such a long time. It was the kind of character written and performed so well that I instantly felt respect for him in the game world, almost like he was the player’s grandfather by proxy.

      Definitely check out his talking head dialogue in Fallout 1 on Youtube when you get a minute.

      Then if you see him in Fallout 2, they take his eccentricity up a few notches, but he’s still a solid character and plays a lead in of one of the best questlines in the game.

      Then the Bethesda Harold, and how he’s just turned into a caricature. Kind of sad they’d use up a character like that when he had no need to be there and no business being there anyway. Instead of writing their own memorable new personality, they take something great and make it lame in the worst way, and for disappointing reasons.

  8. Austin says:

    Wow, I guess MacCready has grown up. He’s a “respectable” mungo now.

  9. Peter H. Coffin says:

    “Cannot sleep while trespassing”… Well there’s a Goldilocks scenario we can’t play out then…

  10. Spongioblast says:

    Like with Danse, you can max your rep with Cait by stripping bare ass naked and just fast traveling around

    • lurkey says:

      Dance, too? I thought it’s just Cait and Hancock (“Nice clothes, Emperor”. Tee-hee!).

      You don’t even have to travel with your arse hanging out. Just don’t wear under-something under armour pieces.

  11. silver Harloe says:

    How did they forget baseball when there’s all these pre-war ghouls around who could just tell them?

    • Sleeping Dragon says:

      In the same way they forgot or mangled a few idioms while retaining regional accents (and largely not changing the language over a 200 year period of massive societal upheaval).

      • lurkey says:

        Those accents were really pushing my already thin suspension of disbelief. Are there big, insulated Russian and Irish diasporas in Commonwealth that would not let people interact with the outside world until they’re grown-ups incapable to ditch accent? Do they teach pre-accented English as a gimmick somewhere? (So that., e.g., Russian-accented barkeep would sell more vodka, like in that Geordie Apocalypse spoof :D)

  12. Hitch says:

    Shamus, if you want me to watch the episode, do not put a TV Tropes link in the description. ;-)

  13. Hitch says:

    Mungo always make me think of Mungo Jerry:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wvUQcnfwUUM

  14. Khazidhea says:

    But Shamus, if you never team up with Maccready you’ll never complete your magazine collection.

    Only companion that does this iirc, I just got a mod to maximise affinity as this was the last magazine I needed.

  15. Daemian Lucifer says:

    Question:Is there an actual unique piece of equipment anywhere in fallout 4?And I dont mean “a shotgun that does 20% more damage”,but an actual piece of equipment that does something no other one does.Unique recipes count.

    • ehlijen says:

      There are a couple of unique weapons, do they count? (Freeze ray, broadsider, junk thrower…)

    • Sunshine says:

      At the top of the Mass Fusion building are “Freefall Legs” which negate fall damage without having to wear power armour.

      I suppose the jetpack would count too.

    • Ciennas says:

      Unless I’m missing it, the game gives several unique items, more as the DLC get implanted.

      The shishkebab is unique but salvageable, the Tesla Gun is cool, and there are various swords. Automotron added the Tesla Gun and the Assaultron cannon. I never used the latter, but it seemed unique.

      And then there’s The Tooth sword. Looks wierd, unique effect that gets everything you smack it with. At heart a gussied up machete though.

      Hm. There’s the pulse gun from the Cabot House missions. Basically FUSRODAH in a convenient form, and you can mod it into other radiation guns.

      (Ulgh the Cabot House Missions though.)

  16. Wide And Nerdy® says:

    I stormed the Institute but it wouldn’t feel right not to go see Father after all we’ve been through.

    And sure enough there he is on his death bed. I knew what I had to do. In his passing, the last thing he should see is his own mother, naked.

    I’ve never been able to do this to a villain before.

  17. Micamo says:

    Is there any point in this game where MacCready’s past as the mayor of little lamplight is ever acknowledged? I don’t remember any. Seems like they could have given him the same name and I might have given him an honest chance instead of hating him by association.

    • Wide And Nerdy® says:

      I can’t remember if he mentions lamplight or his job but he does mention that he married that equally bratty girl that was with him in FO3. She’s dead and their son is having health problems.

      • acronix says:

        He does mention Little Lamplight in the first conversation, I think, and you can tell him it sounds like a stupid place that shouldn’t work in reality (or something along those lines).

        His answer is basically: “No, really, it makes TOTAL sense and it TOTALLY worker” and it’s never brought up again.
        I could almost feel their monkey-with-typewriters yelling “and shut up, player!” over his shoulder.

        • MichaelGC says:

          I’m only going by the wiki, but apparently near Vault 81 he’ll pipe up with:

          I spent my childhood living right next to a Vault. Those are some seriously bad memories I wish to forget.

          Don’t we all, mate, don’t we all? I have zero sympathy. Zip. Zilch. None.

        • Wide And Nerdy® says:

          If it was Obsidian, Macready would have a better defense or lampshade.

          Something like “you’re right. It only worked for a little while, as long as our fungal food supply held out. A group of children can be relied on to perform chores when they know its for their own survival. After that . . . well child leaders just aren’t read for that kind of pressure.”

          Or “In retrospect its amazing we held out that long but eventually some teens from Big Town came back in numbers and took over the place. Originally they were fine staying in Big Town because its better there. I mean who wants to conquer a cave filled with kids to harvest fungus? But when things turned sour, that’s when Little Lamplight fell.”

          • MrGuy says:

            Or maybe just:
            “What happened? What do you think? What always happens to kids. Bigger kids beat us up and took it. Said they were in charge now. I took off and never looked back. For all I know, they’re still there. Or maybe they got tired of eating fungus and left. Who knows?”

            • Wide And Nerdy® says:

              Much better. More concise and, unlike my awkward attempts, it sounds like something Macready would actually say. Good job nailing his voice.

              In my defense, I was trying to come up with something that could happen to the community that wouldn’t have already happened by the time of FO3. But even by that standard, I think your suggestion works.

  18. Phantos says:

    I finished MacCready’s quests, became friends with him, but I still don’t forgive Fallout 3.

    I just understand now that it wasn’t his fault. He’s just a fictional character given lines that were stupid to serve a story that made no sense.

    Granted, I haven’t gone near the guy in any other playthrough since, so maybe he’s still sort of a lightning rod for my resentment of Fallout 3…

  19. Kelerak says:

    I have to wonder why none of the ghouls call you “smoothskin” in this game.

    • Actually, the Vault-tec salesman will, I think.

      • Wide And Nerdy® says:

        Is he always in Goodneighbor?

        I think this is as close as they get to having an interesting hub. There are multiple reasons to be at that bar. You can have a fun time with the singer, and in my case, I ran into the salesman immediately after that. Man, Goodneighbor really had potential.

        Of course, it does have the Silver Shroud quest. Which is almost enough by itself.

        • Coming_Second says:

          Shame it’s so ugly and wretchedly designed. And makes zero sense logistically. People complain about Diamond City, but it’s in the centre of a big city, is very defendable and observably has sources of food and water. It passes all the things Shamus pointed out were wrong about Megaton. Goodneighbour is… nowhere in particular, and its people apparently subsist on concrete and jet.

  20. I like how Josh basically boarded the last Triggerman in the butt and it was like some offscreen props person threw blood on him.

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