Fallout 3 EP22: President Evil

By Shamus Posted Friday Mar 15, 2013

Filed under: Spoiler Warning 96 comments

The story so far: A water purifier that has no reason to exist was overloaded by a man to prevent it from falling into the hands of people trying to fix it and released radiation it shouldn't have, thus killing Colonel Autumn, who had no reason to be there. Then later we got through a village of children who fdso gah frrzlmpr blaaa huygggnl asdf;lj so we could enter vault 87 and recover a GECK, a device which would be better put to use in virtually any possible manner besides the one for which we had acquired it. Then Colonel Autumn, who shouldn't be alive, captured us with a flash grenade that shouldn't have worked and thrown by soldiers who had no way to reach us.

Link (YouTube)

The true madness is that the plot is this mangled, despite the repeated railroading and plot hacks used by the writers. I can understand that a freeform or branching story can get pretty complex and possibly tangled. As someone who has run D&D games I know that no plan survives contact with the enemy. (Your players.) And I've had some gaps in my stories. But When the main plot is set in stone and the player has no power over it, there is no excuse for not simply writing something that makes sense. In most cases I'd pummel a game over things like pacing, characterization, maintaining tension and interest, and all of those other challenges that good writers must overcome. But here we're talking about basic coherence. We're talking about simply relaying a fixed set of events that don't contradict one another. For example: Don't have multiple characters come back from the dead without offering anything in the way of acknowledgment or explanation.

Still. Fallout 4, right? Who’s excited? You excited? I know I’m excited.


From The Archives:

96 thoughts on “Fallout 3 EP22: President Evil

  1. Wedge says:

    To be honest, in spite of all of this, I *am* excited for Fallout 4. Part of it is that I live in Boston and F4 is all-but-confirmed to take place in Boston.

    1. Raygereio says:

      The “fallout 4 in Boston” rumor was false. It was made up by someone on reddit who eventually confessed it was fake.

      1. Last I heard, Obsidian would really like to do another Fallout, perhaps even something along the lines of New Vegas. But it wasn’t really an announcement. It just seemed like they were thinking out loud.

        President Evil

        On that note, Shamus, did you hear they’re putting Left 4 Dead 2 characters in Resident Evil 6? And vice-versa?

        Two terrible zombie games, finally together!

        1. Thomas says:

          I’m hoping that happens after Fallout 4 anyway. Bethesda aren’t tech or art geniuses but I imagine they’d probably do a better job of having the first run at the new console generation anyway

        2. Klay F. says:

          I’d be okay with the franchise being split between two studios working to fill two obviously different niches. That way, the people who know what Fallout is supposed to be like can stick with the west coast continuity, and Bethsoft can keep smoking crack and do whatever the hell they feel like with the east coast stuff.

      2. Austin says:

        Yeah. Fake.

    2. Jokerman says:

      I just wish they would hand off the series to Obsidian and….i dunno, get ID to bugtest it?

      I know they decide everything on Metacritic and obviously that proves Fallout 3 is better so Bethesda must make FO4.

      1. krellen says:

        Y’know, if businesses really did exist to make money, they wouldn’t care about critic scores, only about sales and profit – which would make New Vegas the one they should imitate.

        1. Jokerman says:

          I did not know Vegas sold more, interesting…

      2. X2-Eliah says:

        Hm. I actually want fallout 4, and I want it by bethesda. I am weird like that. Anyways, Obsidian should be plenty busy with their kickstarter game or something (I am sure they have one or two).

        1. Obsidian should write and set up the main quest and be responsible for characters.

          Bethesda does a good job on atmospherics, not making areas TOO much like rat mazes, and using whoever that mad genius is who sets up their trapdoor “gotcha” setpieces.

          There’s room enough for both to contribute. It’s how to mesh them together (and, if the tweet is to be believed, include Three Dog) that’ll be the hard part.

          1. Jokerman says:

            I thought the entire capital wasteland was a bit of a rat maze with all its unclimbable stacks of rubble, getting around could be quite a pain, there inside spaces were better for this though.

            1. I think that was a combination of railroading (you can’t go here until you’ve gone here, here, and here first) and making it more console-memory friendly.

              It wouldn’t surprise me if it also was meant to open you up to Talon Company/Regulator attacks more often when you fast traveled.

              1. Irregular says:

                My memory’s been pretty spotty, so I don’t know if past Spoiler Warning ever talked about the absurdity that is Talon Company.

                Who are those clowns working for? It certainly isn’t the Enclave, unless President Eden is paying them to kill his own men in plain view so nobody suspects the connection between the two groups.

                And they target people who do good stuff. What the hell? Why? Why would anybody come up with the idea of forming a mercenary band aimed at keeping the Capital Wasteland… a wasteland?

                I can’t even find the words to go into a full-on rant, they’re just so dumb. Why does Talon Company exist, beyond playing the role of minor ‘evil for the sake of evil’ antagonist group?

                1. Jokerman says:

                  Well, i thought they were just a group who takes any contract on someone…but really they are only justified in going after you if you pissed of Tenpenny and Mr. Burke, since there is a note with them putting a hit on you.

                2. They could’ve made it work, but it would’ve required Tenpenny to be more than just an idiot rich guy who had “EVIL” stitched on his shirt.

                  Best guess, they were trying to re-create Gizmo from Fallout 1, a guy who was a crime boss who you didn’t actually see committing any crimes. His handymen shoot up a bar, but I think that’s the extent of what you see. Anyway, I’d like to think that they had more in mind for Tenpenny, with his hands in other things so that if you were earning good karma, chances are you were somehow ruining his plans. As it was, if you were “good,” it meant that he was hiring Talon to come and put you out of his misery. Now that would’ve been cool, making Tenpenny the invisible hand behind some of the evil going on in the wastes, perhaps aiding the Enclave or trying to get the GECK for himself, etc. Then Tenpenny Tower could’ve been a fortress, filled with hoarded tech and weapons, with this old mastermind sitting on top of it that you’d have to infiltrate, join, or destroy.

                  I really need to learn how to mod.

                  Note: The note calling for the hit is signed by Mr. Burke, who is most likely dead. How they couldn’t put some markers in the game code that would change some TEXT based on who was alive and who wasn’t seems awfully lazy, even by current video game standards.

                  Anyway, Talon also fights the Super Mutants for some reason. Maybe they just want the same stuff or the Mutants are trying to eat the Talon Mercs.

                  I just see them as a handy source of weapons and ammo, mostly.

          2. Phantom Hoover says:

            Yeah, Bethesda have far more experience at geographical design than Obsidian, and it shows.

            1. On the other hand, Obsidian knows how to make a video game level that isn’t just green rubble. So there’s that.

  2. Daemian Lucifer says:

    I wonder now:How much radiation would you have to be exposed to for you to die in mere seconds?

    1. Patrick says:

      A grotesque amount.

      Bsically, to kill that fast the radiation would more or less have to sterilize large chunks of your body. And we’er only talking about Gamma Rays and possibly Neutron radiation. The thing is, they usually kill through slow organ failure; there’s almost nothing around which could localize enough radiation to kill that fast without also turning your body into cinders. Basically, you need the kind of radiation that a small nuclear explosion would release… but no actual heat. I’m not actually certain we have any convenient phenomenon to test this on.

      1. James says:

        i know from my studies that if you consume alpha or beta radiation you WILL die, slowly and painfully, ‘cus it cant escape the body, gamma in this case higher chance for survival, though you’ll probably still die in the end.

        on Fallout 4, im actually looking forward to a fallout game in the “creation” engine its much better then gamebryo, (even though its just a reworked version of it) plus it looks less like ass. plus the writing in Skyrim wasn’t dreadful. lets all hope

        1. Decius says:

          I assume you mean ‘have a long-lived or high-activity alpha or beta source stuck in your digestive tract’. You can’t eat alpha radiation any more than you can eat visible light.

          A small, highly active alpha source embedded in an indigestible particle would probably cause little or no problems.

          1. bucaneer says:

            That’s not quite true. While alpha particles don’t travel much farther than a few centimetres and as such pose little harm from outside, they still pack a ridiculous amount of energy which will damage any tissue in direct contact with an alpha source. A pill like you describe will create ulcers wherever it happens to be in the digestive tract and will almost certainly lead to cancer if it stays there long enough.

        2. rayen says:

          “gamma in this case higher chance for survival, though you'll probably still die in the end.”

          yes, you will die in the end. We all do.

      2. Decius says:

        You would only need enough gamma radiation that the heat would kill you. A few kilowatts at most.

        1. X2-Eliah says:

          Yeees but this is not about heat killing at all, this is entirely out of mutational rays.

    2. Paul Spooner says:

      A whole lot. Really though, to die that fast, you’re just dying from massive hyperthermia. “Radiation poisoning” kills you through cell replication failure, and really can’t act faster than a day or so. The firefighters at Chernobyl took weeks to die.

      Even if you are actually on fire, it takes a few minutes for you to pass out if you don’t inhale the smoke. To pass out in seconds from radiation exposure (ionizing or not) would imply massive, rapid overheating, like being stuck in a huge microwave. At that point, no amount of “radiation” protection would help, as the problem is you’re getting cooked, not poisoned. It’s a simple matter of heat transfer. If the heat release is ongoing, this would melt the whole machine into radioactive lava. Good luck making a melted machine work, even with a genesis device.

      The whole thing is stupid piled on top of stupid of course.

    3. oleyo says:

      If one were exposed to enough ionizing radiation (what most people mean by “Radiation”, i.e: emissions from nuclear transmutation), to kill you in seconds from straight up cellular damage, they would most probably also be exposed to enough broad spectrum EM (infra-red, light, X-rays) and the resulting heat (and shock forces from the rapid heating) that it would be purely academic to determine what in fact “killed” you.

    4. MrGuy says:

      Yeah, immediate death would probably need to be a sufficiently powerful source to cook you directly rather than kill you through radiation poisoning effects.

      According to Wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acute_radiation_syndrome), a dose of 30 Grey (Gy) (equivalent to 3000 rads) has an almost immediate onset of painful symptoms, but still takes a day or two to actually die from.

      The best estimate I can get of that compares to an atomic bomb is here: http://isnap.nd.edu/Lectures/phys20061/pdf/19.pdf. This indicates a dose of 30 Gy is about the dose you’d receive if you were standing about 500 meters from ground zero at Hiroshima.

      Compare that to the blast damageradius from the same bomb, which was about 2 miles (per http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Little_Boy), or about 6 times as far away.

      In other words, to get a “fatal in a day or two” massivevradiation from an atomic bomb, you’d be we’ll within (in fact, near the center of) the zone were everything was completely leveled by the blast.

      Certainly, there are other ways to get high-dose radiation other than standing near an atomic bomb blast, but hopefully illustrative of the fact that a not-immediately-fatal-but-very-soon level of radition requires a lot of proximity to an ungodly amount of power, which could probably find a quicker way o kill you before ration poisoning even had its chance.

      1. MrGuy says:

        Wow, sorry, comment editor appears badly broken in iOS. Hope the typos didn’t get in the way of the point.

    5. Decius says:

      ~1000 REM is LD50 (half of people die before recovering) if received in one dose. That’s lethal within days but can be incapacitating in hours.

      How long is ‘seconds’, and how dead is ‘dead’? Decapitation takes longer than most people expect to be brain-dead fatal…

      1. X2-Eliah says:

        How long dd it take for the people in the purifier to drop down after your Dad switched it on?
        That long.

        Or, how long did it take for Josh’s Cuftbert to drop down after swithing on the geck in the vault? That long.

        It’s not as if we don’t have a visual reference as to the time here :P

      2. Syal says:

        ‘dead’ as in ‘fell unconscious and isn’t going to wake up’.

        Assuming continued radiation, anyway.

    6. Pete says:

      Exactly 1000 RADs worth of it, obviously. It says so on the Pip-Boy and everything.

      (Keep in mind this is still the same magical 60s radiation and thus needs not make sense.)

  3. Patrick says:

    In Fallout 4, you will start off by pushing the button which causes the nukes to fly way back when*. You are then frozen in cryo-sleep because a vague father-figure (this time played by David Warner, as they’ve already raided the stockpile of British Character Actors pretty hard) decides you are the CHOSEN ONE. You somehow emerge in the post-apocolyptic ruins of New York… which is a giant hilly desert with a bunch of one-off subway tunnels connecting various zones. Even after 300 years, nobody has cleaned up anything and all the major monuments are still roughly intact.

    There is a pre-defined group of BAD GUYS who do BAD THINGS because they are BAD. And a pre-defined group of fairly annoying jerks who dick you around the main plot. Nobody will be even remotely capable of doing things without you, and you personally will solve all problems forever. Three Dog will be back even though he’s 137 years old, but this time is marked as an Essential NPC and you can’t turn the radio off. The Brotherhod of Steel, despite being a tiny band of high-tech militarists, are a major force in the game even though nothing in it actually has anything to do with them. Supermutants are constant enemies. This is perhaps fortunate because your only means of interacting with the world is shooting things. The plot will involve you purifying the Atlantic Ocean of salt, except the BAD GUYS are out to stop you because… umm… errr… FLASH GRENADE!

    It will cost 60 billion dollars, but sell an absurd number of copies by tapping into the fact that Bethsoft has magical mind control.

    1. Nick-B says:

      Shut up and take my money?

      Just kidding. That sounds horrible. Almost like another game that we were talking about very recently… Oh, what was that game. I swear I just saw a Let’s Play video of it like 2 minutes ago… God, and it was so horrible.

  4. Daemian Lucifer says:

    So now that we know new vegas was good,will Josh finally admit that he was part of that development team?

    1. anaphysik says:

      Rewatch the end of Season 5. Josh actually didn’t like New Vegas, because he is sometimes BUTTS.

  5. Sciencegar says:




    I’m sorry but you keep banging on about this for the entire rest of the playthrough and its so obviously wrong. STOP BEING WRONG.

    I know the two characters have no personality and no defining traits aside from being blonde scientists, and one dies and one joins the Enclave. But Josh just completely dropped the ball on this one and you guys ran with because you felt the need to make the plot seem even stupider than it is. This would have taken 30 seconds to fact check, Rutskarn could have done it before the end of the episode.

    I realise this is a minor point to get hung up on but you guys are making good points, and making such a huge factual error undermines those. Especially because you dwell on it for the next half-dozen episodes without once thinking ‘Wait, maybe Josh, the noted ignorer of all plot points, made a mistake’.

    Sorry. I’ve been saving up this rant for a while, I had to get it out.

    1. Jokerman says:

      You know this was recorded back in 2009? I think? A while ago at least. Need some dates on these reposted episodes :D I cant even remember the year they were made now.

      1. John the Savage says:

        Summer of 2010.

        1. Jokerman says:


        2. Sciencegar says:

          I’m aware, I’m aware I’m shouting into the past. But I’m mad at the Past Spoiler Warning crew for doing it and the Present Spoiler Warning crew for not correcting themselves.

          And I can see the humor potential in the scenario, if they had acknowledged the truth yet worked on the scenario as a way of pointing out how the NPCs in Project Purity, the focal point of the game, are so bland you can’t tell whether they’re alive or dead. So I figure maybe they think it works for humor purposes, but it still rankles me.

          1. Thomas says:

            Honest I think you’re assigning motives to a mistake. I don’t think they’re playing it for humour or trying to make the plot sound stupider than it is. Someone died who they were fuzzy on the identity of and they thought it was this person, they don’t need to be Machiavellian about it

          2. Jokerman says:

            We all make mistakes, i don’t think they went along with it just to “plot seem even stupider than it is.” Because it really needs no help doing that. i just assume they thought Josh was correct due to not remembering her name, i assumed he was correct when watching it also…

    2. MrGuy says:

      Josh just completely dropped the ball on this one and you guys ran with because you felt the need to make the plot seem even stupider than it is.

      There is a theory which states that if ever anyone discovers exactly what the plot of Fallout 3 is and why there’s a chance it isn’t stupid, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and utterly ridiculous. There is another theory which states that this has already happened.

      1. I think that’s available somewhere on the Fallout Nexus.

        Not that there isn’t good stuff there, but there’s a lot of really… unfortunate things there, too.

      2. DGM says:

        I don’t know why I’m looking for my father, but he’d better have a very good reason for me wanting to see him.

          1. DGM says:

            Yep. The Spoiler Warning crew joked so many times about not knowing why they even wanted to find dear old dad that Zaphod’s line occurred to me a while ago. When MrGuy paraphrased HGttG to riff on the game I decided to toss it in (though admittedly it’s a little late in the plot for it).

    3. Shamus says:

      I forgot there was more than one Woman Scientist that isn’t Dr. Li.

      Ten minutes from now, I’ll have forgotten it again. What makes these two characters… anything? Do either of them have backstory?

      1. From the Vault Wiki…

        Anna Holt: Anna was responsible for the gestation of naturally occurring foodstuffs during her tenure in the Rivet City science lab, where she worked under Doctor Li. Soon kidnapped by the Enclave, Anna Holt was “forced” to help the Enclave in their experiments at Raven Rock. She was astonished by the technology the Enclave possessed and she quickly told them everything about Project Purity. She can be found at Rivet City science lab before The Waters of Life, and at Raven Rock after The Waters of Life, located in a room near the science lab.

        Janice Kaplinski: The only thing 29-year-old Janice loves more than her hydroponic plants is Doctor Li. It’s a case of classic hero worship. Janice is utterly loyal to her and completely believes in the projects they are working on. She is a very accomplished scientist but lacks that vital spark of genius and ambition that James and Doctor Li have, but she is their equal in technical knowledge. She is close friends with Doctor Preston, who treats her like the daughter he never had. As a botanist, she puts her skills to work to help find ways of creating non-irradiated food sources by conducting experiments in hydroponics.

        And in case you’re wondering on Janice’s description, Dr. Preston is Rivet City’s medical doctor.

        I want to say I remember Janice’s backstory from some conversations I had on the boat, but they really didn’t stick with me. Anna’s joining the Enclave is about the only thing I remember about her. It’s this that makes me kind of wish RPGs had “pop quiz” sections to get speech options. If you can’t remember who told you what or who someone is, you can’t have the whole conversation. Harsh? Yes, but more realistic.

        1. Syal says:

          That would require a way to review information obviously; I’m not going to want to trek back across the map to relearn the name of Plot Dump Willy to have a full conversation with Plot Dump Steve, all because I took a break from the game for a couple days.

          1. Then you have to take the “perfect recall” perk. :)

        2. Jokerman says:

          See Shamus, both are really well written, well defined characters – Fallout 3 is just above you.

        3. MrGuy says:

          From the Vault Wiki…

          And that’s the problem in a nutshell. The characters are so unmemorable that to tell them apart (even for someone who’s played the game) requires a wiki.

          This is actually an interesting sidelight on Shamus’ “should lore be behind a gate?” question. As I recall it, you could get at least some of the info from the wiki from exhausting the dialogue tree with each of them at Rivet City. I seem to recall some of it being on Dr. Preston’s machine if you break into his place. So the lore is there.

          The problem is it’s uninteresting stuff about uninteresting characters, and there’s basically no reason to care. Anna and Janice could have been named “Rivet City Scientist” (a la “Megaton Settler”) for all their relevance to the plot. They’re not even side characters. They’re part of a herd you escort one time (twice if you escort them to the purifier). There’s no REASON to interact with these characters. Ever.

          So, yes, if you’d bothered to gather and remember information about every random Rivet City scientist, you might remember “which one was Anna?” when she shows up in Raven Rock. But why would you? The only reason you ever have to interact with these character is during the “history of Rivet City” quest, and even then you can just jump to “what do you know about Rivet City’s history?”

          Rivet City has the same problem as Little Lamplight – the developers took the time to fill it with characters that have unique dialogue and in theory unique personalities, but a.) your interaction with the place they live is DESIGNED to have you skip over them to get to the important plot quest you’re on, and b.) while they HAVE a history and personality, it’s generally sufficiently banal to not be interesting.

  6. Paul Spooner says:

    Interesting that Rutskarn is discussing playing KOTOR2, both here and in the podcast! Are you arranging this?

    1. Tse says:

      Maybe we'll get a spoiler warning season from KotoR 2? I know it's unlikely, but it would be awesome. It's a somewhat broken and unfinished game, but it has the writing talent of Obsidian behind it. So we would get a nice balance of hilarious bugs, rage and praise.
      And, to be fair, I had more problems trying to get through KotoR 1, one level was lagging terribly no matter the settings, while everything else ran smoothly while maxed out.

      1. Viktor says:

        KotOR, and all games made with that engine, have an unavoidable bug that means Josh cannot record cutscenes. Sadly, KotOR and Jade Empire will never get the SW treatment.

        I’m still hoping we get Mercenaries 2, at least as an interlude. Mattias Cuftbert would be great.

        Edit: And we’re back to ~2 minutes to post a comment. Editing seems to work, though.

        1. 4th Dimension says:

          I still say screw cutscenes, and add them only in post production.

          1. Thomas says:

            I don’t remember there being too many important cutscenes, this is all of them and I think a lot of those are just different variations of the same event

            1. Syal says:

              The Jedi Council cutscene is kind of important, as is the one with whats-her-name (or was that a dialogue tree?).

              Although the other route makes it irrelevant, is dumber story-wise and has more bugs and would therefore be the chosen route I’m sure.

              1. anaphysik says:

                the one with whats-her-name

                Probably the stupidest use of a spoiler tag that I’ve ever seen XD

                1. Syal says:

                  That was the point.

          2. Fleaman says:

            Is the problem that shit crashes when the cutscenes are recorded, or just that they show up all black or something? If it’s like the latter, you guys could just play the game like normal and then find some 240p Youtube video of the cutscenes to superimpose (subimpose?) over (under?) your commentary.

            Your face and clothes would mysteriously change every time a cutscene starts, but I think that would make it better, not worse.

      2. Karthik says:

        KOTOR 2 is now fixed. Missing levels have been put back in, bugs have been squished, and the ending makes considerably more sense.

        The restored content pack has taken care of that.

  7. Re: Rocket Jumping in Fallout. I think you can, in theory, but either corpse physics are different than living characters/NPCs, or the force needed to launch yourself is far in excess of the amount of damage you can absorb.

    I recall an amusing video that involved Mr. Tenpenny and something like 50 frag mines. Tenpenny’s got some good distance potential.

  8. Holy wow, guys. I just thought of something, and it would be kind of cool, even with the railroading in Vault 87. All it would take is a retexture and maybe a filter put over one character’s voice:

    After Dad’s death in the purifier, when Colonel Autumn shows up again in Vault 87 to capture you… he’s a ghoul.

    Autumn’s loyalties would’ve been nicely in conflict, and even his squad could’ve been ghoulified, leading to two factions in the Enclave base when all hell breaks loose.

    If this was implemented, I would’ve loved to see one of the outcomes with Autumn at the purifier be his final turning into a feral ghoul reaver (which would’ve made him a much tougher opponent).

    1. Deadyawn says:

      Huh, you know, that would’ve fixed like…five different things that were wrong with this bit.
      It’d explain why Autumn disobeyed Eve, it’d explain how he survived, it’d explain why he doesn’t want to put the modified FEV in the purifier and it’d explain how he managed to get in to vault 87.

      The plot is still completely fucked but honestly that would’ve been a significant improvement.

      1. Gruhunchously says:

        Though, to be honest, him not wanting to put the FEV in the purifier is probably the result of him bearing at least the superficial trappings of a sane and rational human being.

        1. Maybe he’s Reginald’s REAL father?

          1. Syal says:

            That would be an awesome twist; the Enclave is actually the good guys, trying to stop Dr. Nefarious from poisoning the region’s drinking water by using the GECK to algaefy the river.

  9. Rem says:

    You picked up a Power Fist near the end there, Josh. Looking back, I’ve always wondered why you never used it.

    1. ehlijen says:

      Because in this playthrough he’s a melee character, not an unarmed one…no wait, that couldn’t possibly be the reason for Cufthbert to not use a weapon…

  10. Bropocalypse says:

    It’s also possible to destroy Autumn with a logical paradox if you have high enough science, incidentally. That doesn’t make the existence of the other speech check any better, but at least it’s an(admittedly cliched) option. No paradox crumple-zones here.

    Also, I use a shower loofa. It’s good way to stretch your soap use!

    1. Alphadrop says:

      Think you meant Eden there, though causing Autumn to explode due to a logical paradox would be funny.

  11. Factoid says:

    I think I’ll just go back to playing Kerbal Space Program. For anyone who hasn’t checked it out, it’s a rather amusing, super nerdy rocketry sim. you build rockets out of parts, kind of like lego bricks. Then you try to launch them. If you’re really good it won’t just blow up and you can launch your little Kerbals into space. If you’re really really good you’ll master the orbital maneuvers to take them somewhere. If you’re really really really good you’ll design something that actually looks cool and do these things in style.

    I’ve just gotten past the “not blowing myself up” phase and I’m working on the orbital mechanics part (don’t worry, you don’t actually have to do any math, it’s all slider controls and stuff.)

    It’s a minecraft style paid alpha, but there’s a demo of the 0.16 version.

    1. hborrgg says:

      Actually they updated the demo to basically the most recent build minus a lot of the parts and the solar system only includes Kerbin and the Mun. But otherwise the basic gameplay is there so yeah, if anyone’s interested in something that’s basically minecraft with rockets and physics now would be a great time to try it out.

      *cough* Shamus *cough*

      1. hborrgg says:

        Well, it was the latest build. 0.19 just came out adding rover parts and making a number of other changes and of course the site is now overloaded.

  12. MrGuy says:

    I liked Shamus’ point when talking to President Eden. “You don’t really have a land problem. You could just ignore Megaton. You don’t need to kill them.”

    Um, Shamus? I’ve got some terrible news for you about Megaton…

    1. Now this would have been interesting: What if your blowing up of Megaton torpedoes your argument, making Eden’s self-destruct not an option?

      Have there been actions that take away speech options no matter how high your speech is? That would be an interesting consequence to certain in-game choices.

      1. Syal says:

        But Speech is also Bluff, you know; if you torpedo your own argument you can just use your Speech to convince them that you didn’t.

        1. Not necessarily, as you’re only given the options that the game gives you, and even with the most amazing bluff skill in the world, you might not be able to undo past acts. Giving an impassioned speech to spare a single life could “succeed” in that it was awesome, but if you killed the recipient’s son, it might do little but impress him before he starts shooting.

          If speech were all-powerful, you’d have 100% options for every NPC. Mind you, that could be funny if they were random things you could use your speech-power to order them to do, as if you were the Kwisatz Haderach.

          1. Syal says:

            If my speech skill doesn’t let me convince him that I am his son then I just don’t see the appeal of speech at all.

            (I call it “the inverse Vader”.)

            1. MrGuy says:

              Personally, I’m fond of the “recursive Vader,” which is better against computers like President Eden.

              “Luke, you are your father.”

  13. Irregular says:

    I can’t remember fully, but wasn’t it said in-game that the Enclave would be able to fortify their position to near-impregnability if the Brotherhood didn’t attack the Purifier as soon as possible?

    1. I think it’s a conversation between Elder Lyons and another elder/scribe right before they launch Liberty Prime and you guys go and listen to the best robot-dialog in the game.

    2. ChoppazAndDakka says:

      I never bought that explanation, given that you had literally just got done destroying base in the area, killed their president and totally ruined their infrastructure. Granted, in Broken Steel they added another base, complete with access to a giant fuck-off laser weapon (which begs the question of why they hadn’t used it on the Brotherhood already, unless the game expects me to buy that they happened to get it rearmed AFTER they had lost their leaders and main base), but as of vanilla they had no base of operations in the area, yet somehow are able to cart tons of dudes in basically overnight. How many guys were they keeping out of the main base where all their leadership is? Wouldn’t there be SOME confusion and scrambling to call reinforcements after the utter destruction of Raven Rock? And even if they could fortify it up, how could they defend the entire basin effectively? It really makes no sense.

      1. Ciennas says:

        Unless Colonel Autumn has a high enough Speech skill. He’s the remaining head of government, and has ordered all of his forces off towards the purifier.

        Anybody still confused would join up with their commanding officer, who would link up withAutumn eventually.

        As for the lack of space lasers… maybe they did finally figure it out just twelve weeks too late, or they were afraid of damaging the purifier with the crossfire. It wouldn’t be the first time that a technically superior weapon remained shelved long after it would have been tactically sound to use it.

        I would have liked it if Autumn came back for Broken Steel if you chose to spare him. I was sad to read that he’s just gone forever after the main quest.

        (In universe, Euclid’s Range Finder would be such a weapon. Surgical strikes on enemy structures that wipe out key personnel? It would have completely averted the nuclear war, because everybody with the authority to launch the nukes just got satkilled.)

        1. Irregular says:

          The problem is that after the Basin gets purified, the Potomac is next.

          So how is the Enclave going to defend THAT?

  14. ChoppazAndDakka says:

    I was thinking, is there any sort of speech check you can do on people that doesn’t run off of the Speech stat? One of the things I loved in New Vegas is that you can get through situations with various stats. Like at the end of Old World Blues, where I got through the final conversation with both Speech and my 100 Science, the results of which were hilarious. It added a lot to the replay value of New Vegas, as you could get through things with characters without just Speech. I haven’t played Fallout 3 in years, but don’t remember any situations where dealing with characters didn’t rely on Speech, and feeling like I was shoehorned into a certain build if I wanted to accomplish anything with characters without a lot of extra work and/or lesser rewards, and combined with the lack of choice in the game, I never felt Fallout 3 had replay value as every quest would go exactly the same every time.

    1. I believe a few were skill based, but in conversation. You could bypass parts of her quest chain or just get extra XP from Moira by having an appropriate science skill rating, giving you an extra dialog option.

  15. silver Harloe says:

    Forgive me for being dense and missing a bunch of the comments, but is the Enclave’s plan really to

    *) prevent the scientists from finishing and turning on the purifier (including killing random scientists who might be essential to completing the project)
    *) so that they can finish and turn on the purifier (which they might no longer be able to do because they killed random scientists)

    wouldn’t it have been easier to just do nothing?

    and now the player’s plan is to
    *) prevent the Enclave from finishing the turning on the purifier
    *) so that we can finish and turn on the purifier

    wouldn’t it be easier… er.

    everyone has the same goal? and so we’re fighting over…? who gets credit in the history books?

    I’m lost. Is that really what this game is?

    1. WJS says:

      You’re trying to stop him because if he turns the water purifier on, people might see the Enclave as good guys, and we can’t have that. They’re the scary black-armoured horned-helmeted guys! Narrative convention insists they be the bad guys!

  16. Scampi says:

    OMG. I just rewatched this episode and realized Fawkes’ english voice reminds me of the Ultimate Warrior…I think I’ll never get over this^^. Btw: I usually ditch him after the “original” ending, since he tends to either get in my way or shoot me into the back, so I’m annoyed by him, I gotta say.

  17. WJS says:

    The Enclave have radiation suits; they should certainly be able to access the main door. The only remaining issue is how they can open it if you can’t, but really, we’ve seen that hundreds of times before. No, the problem as I see it is how the hell did they know you were going there? They must have known that you needed a GECK (which Dad didn’t tell them, but was in the logs, so OK), had intel on the vaults equal to the Brotherhood (who’d been active in DC for years rather than days), and known that you’d be coming through the back, not following them in through the front. Oh, and they arrived within an hour or so of you, since they’re clearly still fighting the super-mutants.
    Also, naturally an Enclave officer is going to be amenable to a bribe in bottlecaps, rather than US (Enclave?) Dollars. These guys aren’t the NCR, they don’t mix with the locals. Why would that work?
    The worst part about Col. Autumn still being alive is that the radiation burst killed the two soldiers with him. In power armour. That presumably is NBC sealed. Which means the radiation was strong enough to go clean through the actual armour. In about a second. And his super-serum somehow let him survive radiation much stronger than that around the GECK for – well, we don’t know exactly, but probably several minutes at least. You can hang around without worrying about more soldiers finding you, IIRC. He should be a puddle of goo.
    To know you’re from vault 101, all they need to know is that Dad was… well, your dad. Vault 101 was mentioned in the logs from Project Purity. Why they think this is important enough to use it as your label, on the other hand, rather than just calling you James’ son (or whatever), is another matter. Actually, with the president and the colonel giving contradictory orders like that, I’m surprised you don’t see the kind of mutiny you did at Operation Anchorage.
    Eh. Who knows what kind of IFF power armour might have. It’s not that big a deal that it doesn’t work as a disguise.
    I can’t believe that speech check worked. I mean, the second reason (he can’t control the men closest to him, why does he think he’s cut out to run a nation) might possibly work, but the second? You don’t even make the case why his plan is wrong to him. Despite it being so obvious.

Thanks for joining the discussion. Be nice, don't post angry, and enjoy yourself. This is supposed to be fun. Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked*

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>

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.