My Brotherhood of Steel Diary (XBox)

Discussion in 'General Fallout Discussion' started by JDogindy, Mar 16, 2015.

  1. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    Yup, at last, I finally got that infamous game last week and I've been playing it for the last couple of days. Now, I must let you all know this is gonna be text-based, as I don't have any photographs or video proof of me actually doing this because I don't have that kind of hook-up or decent enough cameras to take photos of the TV.

    This diary hasn't been edited, and I did this in purpose. Without much knowledge, or a game manual, I did and will sound like a complete moron at times, so when I call Jane, the Raider Matron "Madrok" or think that the experience meter was actually a radiation meter, don't post to say "That is incorrect!" because I corrected myself later in the diary. I deliberately kept myself naive and nascent for this game so that my experience on playing it will be recognized from that of a newcomer.

    So, why on Earth did I want to do this game? Well, I wanted to see for myself the issues that people had with this from both being authentic to the Fallout franchise to just being a bad game in general in the eyes of many. I decided to give it a chance and once I finish this game, I'm probably gonna put it up with my other XBox games and never play it again. To me, one go-around is all I need.

    I'm gonna be posting my "diary" in segments, and again, I did not bother editing any inaccuracies or mistakes because that was intention. Please keep this in mind.
     
  2. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    PREFACE: Ramblings and Thoughts as a Fallout Gamer

    (Typed on March 12th & 13th, 2015)

    WHAT I KNOW ABOUT THIS GAME: It's a shooter RPG, except you can also punch. And it's set in Texas. And, there's a plot about super mutants, and... well, I've only watched the intro video of this game and have never experienced the gameplay yet.

    WHAT AM I EXPECTING: Not much. This game was maligned by Fallout fans back in 2004 and ever since for playing fast and loose with the general canon as well as being a shoot-em-up game. Also, this was around the time of the Van Buren project, which was ultimately cancelled when Interplay closed down as the result of Acclaim going under.

    But, as a Fallout fan, I feel obligated to try and play every game possible. I've only played the original for a little while, mostly because I hate games that have mandatory time limits as far as your progression, meaning in order to succeed, you have to do things right in a very small window of time that leaves not much room for error (I didn't use the patch where they gave you ample time to find the darn Water Chip). This has bugged me from Chicago on the GameGear all the way to the time I imported the Mobile Suit Gundam 00 game for the Nintendo DS. They all had time limits, and they hampered me because I wasn't that good, and I knew I was gonna fail. So, that's one I'm probably never going back to.

    I did however play Fallout 2 in full, from start to finish. I did it as a good person, and I enjoyed the story a whole lot, mostly because I felt like that there was a sense of me becoming somebody as I progressed from community to community, although I didn't do everything I could have done. I'm gonna go back to it with the Killap addition when I can do so, and I'll have two more runs; one with the Killap as a regular person visiting every single location possible, and one as a complete moron. I tried the moron run once, and I loved it, but I didn't have a great strategy on building him, so he died in New Reno because he didn't want to get laid.

    Fallout 3 I just finished a few weeks ago, and even before playing it, I always looked at is more of "Bethesda's Take on Fallout" instead of it being, well, Fallout. In a way, it did feel like an Elder Scrolls game along the lines of Oblivion or Skyrim, where you had a general objective throughout the game, as opposed to a Morrowind, where there was some leeway about what to do. The story of playing as somebody being born and then his fate ultimately (if you choose to do so without the Broken Steel add-on) being that he dies in the entire game culminating in your guy having a clear-cut destiny isn't the most original idea (although dying in the end isn't as common), but at the very least, you should have the ability to choose your own way to get to that goal instead of "Here's a mission, and if you complete it, I may know where your old man went to", which you stagger to this wherabout and you do another mission where you find out another place where your old man went to, which is sorta the Elder Scrolls approach to storytelling. There was a dearth of side missions and very few memorable locations (Megaton should have been designed better). It also wasn't a funny game as far as what you expect from Fallout, as pop culture references and sidecracks were kept to a minimum. Admittingly, my favorite part of the game was Moria Brown, so I am amazed that she has a big impact in the Fallout timeline with the Wasteland Survival Guide. But, I'm now rambling. Though, I will do one more run (with my current save) once I get the GOTY edition so I can do the DLC stuff.

    New Vegas was always the one I wanted to play, and I didn't get the chance until I finally got a PS3. It took me a little bit to get the chance to enjoy it, mostly because the first time I tried, my brother was appalled at me using melee weapons on Powder Gangers, never minding the fact that he loves being a maniac in Grand Theft Auto. To him, guns are okay, but melee weapons are horrible. I also would've liked the ability to adjust the gore of New Vegas (or 3), but that couldn't happen. After the second try, I got a chance to enjoy the game, doing it exactly how I wanted to after all those years (kill Vulpes at Nipton, humiliate Mortimer and then butcher the White Glove Society, sock it to the Great Khans once again, align myself with Yes Man, and intentionally fail Arizona Killer on another save I had). It felt great, but it wasn't the perfect game. New Vegas had some flaws, as I would've liked more gaming establishments, and New Vegas should have been a more insane version of New Reno (where you had criminal syndicates as well as former tribesman becoming the Three Families). Plus, no underground fighting (The Thorn doesn't really count)? Come on! I wanted to fight the Son of Mike the Masticator. I'll also be playing the Ultimate Edition, but with a new character, and ultimately siding with Mr. House.

    But, my goal for THIS game is to see if it's that bad, or if I can actually find enjoyment in it. For each day I would do this, I'd comment on my impressions and whether or not I'm interested. If I like it, it'll never beat my opinions on Fallout 2 or New Vegas, but at least it'll give me something to do to kill time on a lazy summer day. I doubt that this'll be part of the No Mutants Allowed main page, but it never hurts.

    Okay, now that I got that out of the way...
     
  3. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    (Typed on March 12th, 2015)

    INTRODUCTIONARY VIDEO THINGAMAJIG

    So, there is this intro video, which starts off by mentioning the 1950s. The 1950s was a time that the Fallout universe uses as a cultural reference for presenting what the world looked like before the Great War (cars with tailfins, gaugy, hand-painted advertisments, and a generally optimistic view... until you realize that several of the main components that lead to the Great War involved an unknown plague, weather conditions, and most importantly, the last reserves of fossil fuels being used and fought over), but the Great War happened in 2077, as we all know. I'm confused about it, but that's the beginning.

    A lot of stock footage went into the making of this video, as I can tell. At least they acknowledge the fallout rainstorms that did far more damage to the planet than the warheads.

    And then, afterwards, we get footage from Fallout, such as the Vault Door opening, and the "bad ending" from that game being used as an example of the rise of the Super Mutants. I'm also surprised they used gameplay footage from that game depicting Brotherhood members patrolling.
    Once we get all that out of the way, now we can get to the main game.

    STARTING AND SELECTING


    I started out the game looking at the three people who are Brotherhood of Steel initiates. Boy, the Brotherhood chapter of Texas must be desperate if none of them have any kind of armor... or that one of them is a Ghoul. I went with the big dude mostly because I like starting games out by playing as a macho man, dunno why, but it helps. Also, I'm felt this setting as far as the menu goes and whatnot reminded me of those BioWare games they made for the XBox, like Star Wars: Knights of the Old Republic and Jade Empire. Now, those were some good games. Still don't know what to expect here.

    Oh, and for difficulty, I went with Pansy. Whenever I start a new video game experience, I always go with the easiest possible difficulty, not because I suck as a gamer, but because I want to experience the story and also figure out what the hell am I supposed to be doing. Plus, if I do suck at the game, at least the game won't punish me as much.
     
  4. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    CHAPTER ONE: Welcome to Carbon, Texas... How long before you flee?

    So, our narrator (Mr. Not Ron Perlman) has commented on the community of Carbon, which is a small podunk in the middle of the Tejada desert. As far as desolate communities go, I am a sucker for these smalltown regions in RPGs where your character starts out where they've lived there their whole lives and it looks like a good place if you are in a hard region. Unfortunately, I've also played many RPGs where that small town is the first on the chopping block as far as mass murders go.

    Mr. Burly's mission was to find Brotherhood of Steel Paladins and rendevous with them. Maybe to figure out where he can get some good stuff, or at least because the Texas Chapter's standards for initiates is "Don't get killed on the way to your first assignment".

    I see what is our first villain for the series, and I say that because all Raiders are evil, no matter what. Also, this is my first major complaint. Madrok is impossible to take seriously as an evil mastermind, and it's mostly because of the outfit, which is leather tassles covering her breasts, high heels, and a thong. This is the kind of outfit you'd see in a Frank Miller story... or just about every female character in Japanese pornography. And... breast jiggling? Aw, come on! I'll be blunt; I'm a bit quirky with my preferences, and the more skin a woman has, the less turned on I usually am.

    With that gripe outta the way, she kills a potential slave and goads the mayor into getting more supplies before hauling ass out of Carbon. With that done, I can finally move around, and I talk to Ruby the hooker, who also has the benefit of silicone implants. The task is to get rid of the Raiders still holed up in the bar. But, before I do, I ask some questions. I wanna know about the Raiders, and she discusses how wicked they are... both in town and in the sack. Creeped out as how badly the facial animations are, I ask about the soldiers she mentioned, and how they didn't give her the time of day. Then I asked about her life story... not much there. I would've done anything with her, but I'm broke. So I left. BTW, your tramp stamp's on backwards.

    I then wandered around a bit, finally realizing that I have to save at save stations. Did that, and then I talked to some Carbonites, only for them to freak out that I'm a Raider and start running for the hills. Fed up with incompetent NPCs, I then found Jesse, who is selling weaponry, so I looked, but again, broke. Finally, I make my way to the bar for my first objective, which is dealing with Madrok's Malcontents.

    These raiders are trashing the bar and harassing the barkeeper, Armpit. I come in, and being a melee fan, start swinging for the fences and laying waste to about a dozen of these fools. I finally get some money and Armpit's respect. Still wondering where these Brotherhood guys wandered to, I asked him and he mentioned they talked to the Mayor. Ironically, Armpit sounds a lot like me... constantly coughing, snorting and spitting because I have serious sinus issues and repetition of bad habits. Probably should have not mentioned that. I asked him about his name, and mentions he's really Arnold, and he is a humble bartender providing low quality, potentially poisonous alcohol to the dregs of Carbon, but he has plans. Always interested in quick paydays or potential schemes (or at least to humor people), I listen. He mentions alcohol fermented from radscorpion poison, but he don't have the tails from which the glands reside. Deciding that this is an easy deal, I agree, and he mentions there are some in the warehouse.

    On a side note, I remember I wanted to make a CYOA game where the first mission you did was clearing rats out of a warehouse. For some reason, I always love these "go to a warehouse and clear it out" type of stuff.

    But, now that I have a new objective and a new friend, Cyrus the Not a Virus decides to congregate after asking Armpit about his knowledge on the raiders. Here, I finally level up, and because I have to press the BACK button, once again, memories of KOTOR and Jade Empire come to my mind. I start by choosing the First Aid skill, mostly because until I figure out how to properly use firearms, I should get the most out of my Stimpaks.

    Then, I save again, and after this, I realize I can actually jump. But, that was it for Night One of Brotherhood of Steel for me. Realizing I have explained the first 20 minutes of the game in detail, I think I have a way to go. But I've never done this, and I wanna see if I have the skill and the determination to play the game and also keep a log on what I did.

    (Ended on March 12th)
     
  5. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    (Typed on March 13th, 2015)

    Didn't start playing until around 9:30 PM, as I spent most of the evening doodling the drawing that I am using at the top of this thread to present as part of my thread. I was comforted by listening to my local hockey team, the Indy Fuel, wallop the Evansville IceMen for the final time this season. Once I was satisfied with the sketch of the drawing, I started playing.

    After starting my save, I had a brahmin next to me, so I had to maneuver around the moo-moo to search for free ammunition. Once I did that, I looked for the Mayor of Carbon, Richard, because his exclamation point on the somewhat vague map was pulsing and he had a red holocron... erm, Brotherhood of Steel emblem. Having been emasculated by a woman with less leather than a bicycle seat, he thanks Cyrus for dealing with the raider problem in the bar, but laments that killing a few raiders will make things worse.

    I ask him what a mayor actually does, because just standing there in the middle of a dirt town doesn't exactly sound like prime leadership. He tells me it's none of my business, but because he hadn't done anything to really piss me off, I just humor him. I then ask about the Brotherhood, and he talks about meeting a paladin, but in order to find out more, I gotta scratch his back in order for me to get that itch gone. He mentions the fact that the warehouse is infested with radscorpions, so I accept the mission for XP and cash by giving it to the swarthy barkeep. Asking more on radscorpions, Richard sadly confesses how evolution has favored the insects and wonders what point does mankind have in this post-apocalyptic shithole.

    Evolution is a mystery, full of change that no one sees; God makes a fool of history.



    (That popped in my head when I typed this)

    After the Melancholy of Richard the Mayor, I decided to inquire a bit more on the raiders, just to see if I can scope out my future enemy. It turns out that there is a bit of mutual symbiosis between Richard and Madrok; Richard gives them supplies and slave labor, and Madrok treats him like garbage. Remembering this from the cutscene, I pick my first snarky line and comment how he's the bitch of the relationship, and Richard loses it, citing that this has kept his people alive without the help of, with contempt spewing from his motorized lips, the "Brotherhood". At this point of time, I decided to keep tabs on Richard because I now believe he is a poor mayor for this community, but rather than make an enemy of him now (I plan to save that for later), I replied in a calm manner.

    Because I pointed out the truth of the relationship between Carbon and the Raiders, Jesse will give me a discount, which I was more than happy to take, but I only had gotten 40 caps as a result of pilfering dead Raiders and Armpit's gratitude, so I still had a ways to go. In the meantime, I had a warehouse to visit... after saving, of course.

    Looking for somebody worthy of talking to, I visited Vidya, the town's "doctor". A former Follower of the Apocalypse, Vidya has some training, but not much. I ask her for Brotherhood info, but like others, she admits only the mayor knew... although if I was a Paladin, I'd probably have turned Richard into a pile of goo by now. Pegging her a bit more, she is also frustrated with the Raiders and also comments on the Radscorpions, so I now have three people interested in my warehouse liberation. Vidya comments that a crate of medicine is in the warehouse, but because of the radscorpions, nobody can get to it. If left to just the townsfolk, they'll instead use it to get high as temporary refuge from their miserable lives, so I agree to help Vidya out.

    With a full plate of objectives, I step foot into the warehouse (after saving) to face off against the Radscorpion Armada. All 25 of them.

    The warehouse was big and airy and I soon discovered the Radscorpion for the first time. I pummeled it senseless and grabbed the first tail. I wandered over to a door and unlocked it, and was greeted by a large rat, which I also pummeled. Opening up the lockers found me some caps and also an Iron Fist. This was the first time I actually equipped a weapon as I had just been using my bare hands up till then because I didn't know better, but I was glad, because there is a satisfaction of hitting radscorpions helluva far.

    I also noticed they were varying size, meaning I'd probably be dealing with a really nasty radscorpion later on that would make the cantankerous Big Bad Radscorpion stuck in some Nevada cave quiver in fear. This was after taking out 10 of them. I was thankful that my health slowly recovers, but I was also curious about that green bar. My copy of Brotherhood of Steel didn't come with the instruction manual, so I'm guessing that might be a poison level from dealing with hazardous foes.

    After cleaning out the lockers and getting swarmed by a wave of rats, I had to pick between the Town's Railyard and the Garage Door. After another save, I decided to do the Garage Door. Once there, I continued my conquest of the radscorpions, as not even an alliance with the rats could save them.

    AI RANT: Man, those rats are stupid. They act agressive at first, and then they run around in circles doing nothing. Their only sense of competency is running away when their near death. And, nothing is lamer than the swarm in a video game, as it sorta masks issues with enemies that an artificial challange must be endowed to get you to feel like there is difficulty.

    After killing all the scorpions in this area, I saved and called it a night.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 9, 2016
  6. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    (Typed on March 14th, 2015)

    Day 3 of the Brotherhood playthrough, and I am still convinced that this game is pretty fun, but I'm doing it in small doses, so that must be covered. After loading up, I move on to the Auxillary Storage area, where 23 more scorpions wait for a Iron Fist Sandwich. As soon as I move around, I'm reminded that I can't reach all of them because a crate is in the way. Hmm... elementary block pushing, where would our games be without 'em?
    Problem was crate's too big for me to push... so that means I would have to find the mechanism. Though that had to wait. A few more scorpions were in the area, including some Albino Radscorpions that were tough hombres. I stepped into a puddle of radioactive waste and that was when I realized that the green meter was starting to increase while my health quickly plummetted. I now knew this was the Radiation Meter, which most likely raises upon dealing with radioactive entities and wandering through toxic waste. With the scorpions around me dead, I decided to visit Vidya for some health restoration, and maybe the hope that I could get my rad level checked. So, I went back to the Carbon overworld to speak with Vidya and got my health maxed out... but my rad level was still high.

    To take a break from all of this warehouse cleansing, I went back into the Bar to give Armpit my radscorpion tails and got 270 caps for my work so far. Then, I noticed that Ruby had moved into the bar and a new exclamation point was there... after I found that not all of the dead Raiders in the bar were cleaned up... or slain by my peacemakers. It was some mysterious guy in a hood, and like any RPG player worth his weight, I would visit him and dig through him, info-wise. He didn't give me his name, so I'm callin' him Old Wanderer and he's the first guy to peg about my past. I have the upset option and the pissed off option, but unlike Richard, I don't deem him an asshole, so I modestly ask to change the subject about my generic tragic past.

    Turns old Old Wanderer was an Old Brotherhood member, though didn't learn much more than that, and like any goofball who is baking their brains out in this dump, he should know something about the Raiders that would be unique. All he admits here is that while he's got quite the dead Raider count on his resume, as long as humans roam the Wastes, Raiders will be around. Hmm, deep thoughts there, buddy.

    Wondering why the Ugly Faced Hooker went indoors, I went to ask her if she got anything useful for once, and she asked me to find "Mr. Pussy". Man, what an obvious attempt at foreplay, but she is the town prostitute, so there isn't a whole lot of competition from more ingenious hookers. Turns out that's the name of her cat, which often visits the crater. Now, the crater is inaccessable, so that'll have to wait. However, Mr. Pussy is one of the few things I do know about from this game because I did research on cats from the Nukapedia because I wanted to know about the role of these fuzzy pets. It's funny how, in movies and TV, you can have a cat get shot or run over, but people get upset if you hit a dog with a newspaper, while in video games, you can execute all the dogs you want while cats are nowhere to be found. Guess all game developers are cat lovers and don't want them to put them through any more trials.

    With all of this done and taken care of for now, I save and head back to the warehouse to continue my mission. Still worried about the radiation levels I got, but what happens will happen.

    So, after dealing with a few more Radscorpions, and a rat invasion (again), I experience the first of what'll likely be a series of events that'll make me be thankful for saving often.

    You see, I'm gonna these "Dusty Do-Overs" because my XBox is plugged up to an extention cord, and the cord kinda hangs out near (but not in the way of) the door to my room, and I got this cat named "Dusty" that I keep in my room every now and then, yet she finds the time in it to be torture and does everything possible to escape, so I have to put something heavy, like a waste bin, to the door to keep her from getting out. A common problem is that Dusty will grab the extention cord and unplug it during her quest to head back down to the kitchen. So, I had to deal with my first Dusty Do-Over and had to start again, where I still had 15 Scorpions left to crush. I had my power shut off right when I found what was left of an unfortunate (or incompetent) Wastelander whom the flies were more than happy to feast on.

    During this do-over, I finally manage to reach Level 3, which healed all my radiation problems. I used my credits to improve my Bartering skills because I'm probably gonna be selling stuff I won't have much use for and want to get something extra. I also notice how dumb the AI is because a rat is sitting in a pond of toxic goo, slowly dying. Rather than lose the quick XP, I punch it.

    Also during this, I wen to explore a part of the storage area where jumping finally means something, as it helps you avoid the really big puddles of waste. More ammo is good, although I have yet to actually practice with firearms. Then... my first real test; a Really Giant Rat. This one was tougher, but then again, there was also 6 more of those suckers wandering around and helping it. Didn't matter, had death.

    With a Really Giant Rat out of commission, I realize that I'm gonna have to do some backtracking to clear out the Radscorpions, as one of them was in a little room that could only be accessed by a stairway on the other side of the wall. Not feeling it, I go back the other way to the main part of the Auxilary area to figure out how to move the giant crate. Here, I deal with more Albino Radscorpions and both learn how cool and how stupid it is to punch a red barrel.

    As I continue, I unknowingly save a Wastelander who had been hiding from the scorpions behind a makeshift structure. After searching for him, he gives me a few Stimpaks for my troubles, and I march forward to take out more of these arachnids. This time I ran into more rats and an Albino Radscorpion, and I intentionally punch a barrel for the lulz.

    After this, I had to leave the room for an extended period of time, and when I came back, I realized that this game had a screensaver of missles playing the role of toasters.

    The reason why I had paused was I found a Spiked Baseball Bat, meaning I finally had a melee weapon worth using that could give me more power. As I continued, I also realized I could adjust my weapons and ultimately could have three options that could be cycled, so I would have an Unarmed weapon, a Melee weapon, and a firearm.

    Towards the end of my run through the Auxilary area to the Second Floor, I discovered a more vicious breed of Radscorpion that could shoot toxic venom at me. With more HP to boot, this thing will be quite the nuisance.
    Upon reacing Floor Two of this Warehouse, I would wander around quite a bit to discover the mechanism needed to lift up the giant crate blocking the doorway. I found another lifting mechanism that smashed a smaller crate.
    With the floor completely scavanged, I would make my way back down to the main floor once more to do battle with the rats. It turns out that there wasn't much in the way of the arachnid/rodent alliance more that the rats were wanting the radscorpions gone so they could take over. They love to swarm, but with my baseball bat, they would all be pulverized.

    By happenstance, I smashed a crate to find some Leather Boots and Gloves that gave me my first armor upgrade. Realizing how quickly I am adapting to this game, I made one final discovery. It turns out that what I thought was a posion meter and then a Radiation Meter was my EXPERIENCE METER! I had no effing clue about this (well, the thing going away upon leveling up should have been a dead giveaway, but I am slow-witted). Now at Level 4, I opt for more health, which is gonna be needed... for what awaits.

    Returning back to the newly accessable area, after slaughtering about 500 rats (give or take a couple), I destroy the last Radscorpion that had been on the other side of the wall.

    And then... my first real opponent.

    Look at this motherfucker... that Really Large Rat didn't stand a chance!

    And... heavy metal boss music! I know it's cliched, but you know... I kinda want to have that edge going on with something insane.

    So, to beat the Giant Radscorpion, I have to first work on its claws, which are weak to melee attacks. As a melee-oriented Fallout player, I knew I had the advantage. Plus, quite a few Stimpaks that hit the spot in a pinch.

    So, my strategy was to pummel the scorpion, breaking its claws and leaving it to rely exclusively on its tail if it wanted to survive. The Giant Radscorpion does deal a lot of damage, and I mean A LOT, but if you take your Stimpaks and let them do their job, you'll do good, as I found out. I also tried to use the firearms because I was swimming in ammunition, but the damage wasn't as good as I wanted, so I went back to my close-range strikes until the Radscorpion was downed for good!

    With the job done, I had nothing left for the warehouse... except for finding the medical supplies. I searched high and low for them, thinking they were in a special box, and learning what boxes could be smashed, I filled my wallet and scored some extra stuff, but with a heavy heart, I felt I had failed. I even went back down to the basement, where I experienced an example of bad coding, where the Giant Radscorpion was still in the room, but instantly died (thankfully).

    So, my job complete, I felt to tell Vidya the bad news. However, in my stimpak hunts, which resulted in me finding quite a few dead Wastelanders whose quest for the quick rush instead gave them the ultimate release, I had found more than enough for Vidya, so I was rewarded a little bit. And I now have over 35 Stimpaks on me right now!

    Next, I was gonna give Armpit the last of the radscorpion tails. Hopefully he won't kill a lot of people with his non-energetic Venom drink, but I probably won't be long around here when he starts selling it to the unwitting.
    Finally... there was Mayor Bitch.

    I wanted to tell him off, but unfortunately, that opportunity was long gone. But, I gained some caps and found out that the Brotherhood had moved on through the Crater. Expecting a challenge, I knew that my time in Carbon might be coming to an end, although there was still the matter of Ruby's cat.

    Entering the Crater for the first time was a strange experience for Cyrus, as the topography changed to that of a sprawling canyon littered with giant ants and bottomless pits. If he was to get his first mission done right, moving through the bowels of this manmade geological structure was to be needed. I wanted to tip my first brahmin, but alas, the brahmin cannot be hurt, compared to some other critters that roam the Crater floor.
    The giant arms love to swarm you and are more than pesky, but they are helpless when smacked to the bottomless pits. Like the radscorpions, they vary in size, but their tactics are more of having a numbers advantage.

    Visiting the remnants of a military compound, I found the dead cat and picked it up for my collection.

    Considering how I may not ever go back to Carbon if I keep going down the Crater, I would at least let Ruby know that Mr. Pussy can be given a proper burial. 'Course, that had to wait until I would start again the next day.
     
  7. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    (Typed on March 15th, 2015)

    Today is my first marathon session, as I don't really have a lot of things on my plate today. I expect I'm gonna swallow a massive amount of story during this playthrough in my diary, but I am absorbing everything like a sponge.

    My first action was to head back to Carbon and give Ruby the dead cat. She's more than upset about it, naturally, but at least I get compensated. Leaving Carbon for (probably) the last time, I took one last contempuous glance at Mayor Bitch. Fortunately for me, I would realize I would get my opportunity to give him a peace of my mind down the road. But, at this time, I could just imagine.

    Going deeper into the Crater's outer ridges required going through what was left of a community and jumping across pits. I wasn't confident with these mechanics, but at least they were passable enough as I beat the crap out of dozens of giant ants and scorpions. Unfortunately for me, those annoying buggers that shoot scorching venom not only became more common around here, but also took vantage points towards the final leg of this dangerous trek. I decided to finally practice with my firearms, but I was more than irritated at how uneffective they were, so I decided to just punch a lot of them by jumping to their little alcove in the middle of the void.

    Upon reaching the lower sections of the Crater, I grew a bit more paranoid as what I was about to see. After I had opened up a freezer to find a torch that could do some fire damage, I stumbled upon a scorpion nursery, as several of those things popped out of unsightly incubators. I wasn't wary of the scorpions, but finding out where they came from was, so far, my least-favorite part of this game because I am creeped out by insects in video games. Lemme put it like this, going into the Fire Ant Queen's chamber in the Fallout 3 mission "Those!" isn't pleasantville for me.

    Scavanging ammo and Stimpaks from dead Wastelanders is a somber reminder as to the perils this post-apocalyptia present, but at the same time, they aren't gonna be needing them anymore.
    The lower section of the Crater, in general, is slightly more frustrating than the open aired section I started out in, mostly because of the radioactive puddles that the insects liked to go into. I soon realized that fire isn't the best friend of those venonmous volleyers, and now they learned to fear ME! Well... as long as I have a shipment of Stimpaks to keep me up and going. Eventually, after thorough exploration of this region, I made another save before venturing into the Crater Pit. There... I would finally get my wish.

    Mayor Richar... I mean, Mayor Bitch, was waiting for me! I would've asked him how the hell he got down here without running into me, but I was too pissed at seeing his fat mug one more time. Our not-so-democratically elected "leader" once again crooned about evolution as the bones of past civilizations shall be my final resting place. Believing that his worrying about the Raiders was a ruse, I make the comment that he thinks the Raiders shall be the new civilization of the world, to which the Mayor replies that he had no other choice. You see, when I helped the town out in killing some scum in Armpit's Bar, Matron (whom I erroneously call Madrok in the first day typing... will not fix because I want this to showcase how I figured out stuff) got super pissed and gave her bitch an ultimatum; kill the Brotherhood Initiate, or Carbon gets torched to the ground. Without much thought, he chose my death would be a proper deal for me actually trying to make this shithole less shitty. While I can understand that sometimes you have to make tough decisions for your community, I knew he hated my guts the moment he laid eyes on me. Well, the feeling's mutual.
    Still, my mission is finding the Paladins, and Mr. Bitch decided to set up the Brotherhood by leading them to Matron. So, not only did he screw me over by luring me down into this pit, he screwed my faction over! I was raring to go and I now had something to cook his rump roast, although Richard had some of his "friends" drop by to help him.

    So now began the second boss of this game, Mayor Richard. Richard was more annoying than the Giant Radscorpion because of the fact that he is a "flunky boss", where he's not as much of a problem as are the minions that wander around with him. Also, Richard loves tossing grenades (most likely based from Armpit's latest brew) and placing landmines that defeated me the first time I fought him, so I finally died in this game.
    I soon realized that head-on attacks won't work against Richard in this car Stonehenge, so I would use the cars for cover while being tactful about his grenade placement. The second time I fought him, we met at a double KO, so I had to wait until the third try to see him finally be undone by his explosives.

    Although there was a satisfaction in destroying Richard, all those bombs he liked using started to collapse the Crater, meaning I had to move. Although the path back to the surface had a lot of more enemies to cull for experience, I wasn't gonna loiter around and hang out with the Raider bums. Avoiding giant ants, scorpions, and even a Giant Radscorpion, I make my way to the outer layers of the crater. Once there, I had to overcome more of those freaks and assholes, and much to my chagrin, they were able to harm the brahmin.
    Fleeing the Crater was like falling out of the frying pan and into the fire, literally. Although Matron had given the mayor an ultimatum, because she's a Raider, she was gonna torch Carbon regardless if he had succeeded in killing the Initiate. Even in death, Mayor Richard is a failure. I see Armpit trying to weasel his way out of Leather Tassles's death gauze, and instead gets burnt to a crisp. However, even though he was dying, he still had some info left for me to use on dealing with the Raiders in Carbon. Since the deal with the radscorpion tails was ending, he gave me his liquor recipe before dying. Somebody out there in the Wasteland might end up paying a pretty penny for this thing, so I'll hold out until that day comes.

    Vidya had succeeded in getting a few people into the warehouse, but many more weren't lucky. The Raiders have no qualms killing innocents for no reason other than just because, and I wasn't gonna put up with that shit for much longer. Some Raiders used torches of their own, while a few had access to flamethrowers. They were annoying because they like to use fire on their opponents, but all Raiders eventually go down at my newly bought Sledgehammer.

    After clearing out the Raiders in this part of town, I went to the warehouse to check up on Vidya, who refused to let me in. Well, that warehouse may be safe because I killed over 50 radscorpions and a couple hundred rats that occupied it before, but if the Raiders wanna set fire to something, they will set fire to something until they die. Frustrated at not being able to take a breather, our hero sets off for the other parts of Carbon to do battle with more Raiders and probably gain both a better standing with the Brotherhood as well as respect from the all-seeing entity they call "karma".

    The west side of Carbon is a complete maze with manmade barricades, pits, and smashed buildings. I wasn't able to save all of the innocents that weren't able to find sanctuary in the warehouse, but I did a fair enough job. With all Raider activity finished, I moved on to the North side.

    The north side of Carbon appeared to have been connected to a railyard system, as there were numerous tracks that were horribly mangled, either during the Great War and fallout or as the result of people searching for scrap metal. One annoying element of gameplay glitching occurred when I knocked a Raider into a pit and he was still moving around, but thankfully the game registered him as a casualty. I continued my trek of Raider clubbing throughout this part before moving on to the East side of Carbon. There wasn't much going on in that part of town, so I finished my Raider cleansing, which allowed me safe access into the Warehouse.

    Once inside, I look at Ruby and Jesse. As usual, Ruby has a problem, and this time, her grandmother's necklace was stolen. Since this is an easy cap and XP grab, I take it, and then talk to Jesse, who is more than pissed at the Raiders showing up, but is also impressed with my capabilities. Finally, there's Vidya, who might as well now be the head figure of what's left of this community. Upset that not everybody was able to survive, she does thank Cyrus for doing the best he could. The Initiate then mentions that, while killing all these Raiders solves the problem short term, it just gives them more of an excuse to come back here to make sure every single thing in this town is dead, and it won't stop until Matron is eliminated. Jesse is able to finally give me the key needed to get into the town's railyard, and promises to be waiting for me on the other side.

    The Carbon Railyard is yet another in a long line of pointless areas to wander through, and I'm starting to sound bitter because I'm getting to the point where things get tedious. And, bear in mind that I have taken several breaks during the typing and gameplay today so I don't get worn out. The idea of going through one area of a game just to wander into another area in order to wander into the area you are intended to visit is such a pointless means to artifically prolong time and add difficulty to your game. I can tolerate it in modern day games, but that's because the programming and technology can handle massive game worlds, but in this day and age, everything is a series of rooms connected with one another, and the game has to load every individual room. I know this part makes no sense, but this is how I'm feeling right now playing this old game.

    At least an element of suspense is added in mine fields, resulting in me having to be careful, but my dang controller is so hard to have me move at a slow pace not to set them off, as well as the fact that most Raiders don't set them off themselves. While finding a Raider who has the key to the gate, I found the necklace and made sure to return it to Ruby for that quick fix. After a few minutes of wandering, I realized I had to hop on a railcar to get over to the other side in order to find the damn Raider who had the damn key in order to open the game gate! Then, I had to go through another minefield, this time in a tight area just to accomplish this goal. Once I succeeded, even though I died twice at this part because of the mines, I was able to move on to the next part of the Railyard passage to the Mill. Not much worth mentioning there, except a new kind of Raider adversary has appeared.

    Matron is keen on promoting her own gender to higher positions, and also giving them stripper-level outfits, to boot. Also, I noticed they were the first enemies to make comments after you defeated them, with some saying "Nice shot" upon dying. Random tidbit.

    So, after I pass through this next area, I realize I'm now heading to the Mill Parking Lot. Oh, great... I gotta fight through THAT just to get into the damn mill?!?

    Gladly, I learned that wasn't the case. This was a hub area, and Jesse was there to congratulate me on my hard work. Asking where Matron is in this facility, Jesse says she's all the way in the back area because she likes how the machines make vibrating motions. Suddenly, the image of Matron riding on top of a random mechanism during her downtime sprang to my head.

    In order to get to her, I would have to work my way through the rest of the facility to unlock that part. So, to start, I have to work through the storage facility where many Raiders are learning how to use firearms and lose their qualms about raping and pillaging innocents. This part is one of the more grueling segments due to the fact that I learned to loathe a certain type of weapon user later on, but I'm talking ahead of myself.
    After working through the storage area and finding a Stimpak haul, I move on to the Reactor where I have to activate an ancient reactor in order to reach Matron. Getting to the Reactor wasn't as bad as I thought... getting out, however, was a real pain in the ass, because once you leave the Reactor to the Office, you soon see female Raiders that toss around explosives. I died, like, 15 times in this area alone because of those stupid bombs. Thankfully, they get hurt by 'em, as well.

    As I continue my wandering, I also died a few more times because I forgot how much steam hurts, so I would have to jump over them and spend a Stimpak or two if I didn't quite get the distance.

    Eventually, though, I left the Office to go back to the Storage area, and for once, the game was relaxing here as all the enemies I had killed in this area were gone and no reinforcements arrived. This gave me ample time to prepare for heading to the Mill Grinder to face off against Matron. I saved before this, as I usually do.
    An interesting cutscene is here where Matron thanks a Super Mutant General for helping her out in return for slaves when the power goes out in the facility due to the reactor malfunctioning. Matron tries to charm the Mutant into helping her in the forthcoming battle, but the Mutant, who takes more inspirations for a smooth-talking brute along the lines of Marcus instead of the versions that sound more like Maurice LaMarche doing Lrrr and Morbo from "Futurama" that I dealt with in the Fallout games I played on the PS3, not only declines, but admits how repulsed he is by her for selling fellow humans for his cause. Hmm... you need the slaves, but you hate the idea and have issues with the dealer, so our Super Mutant might be Chaotic Neutral. Pissed off at the declination, Matron insults the fact that he is impotent and sets off to battle the Initiate alone.
    Upon entering, you finally get to have an audience with Matron, who is responsible for general misery in this area and the destruction of Carbon. Wanting a piece of her (not in that way), Matron makes the proclamation that she worked for the Brotherhood by guiding them to the Ghoul City, which is where the Super Mutant may have been heading. Although this sounds... fair, the fact remains that Matron still killed many people, and the fact that I've been running around in circles helping dumbass mayors and smelly barkeeps just to find THIS out is more than enough to get me in the mood for a battle.

    Matron's boss fight, which is Boss #3... is pretty disappointing. You're in this giant area, but Matron is all by herself, a far cry from Mayor Richard, and she doesn't have a size advantage like the Giant Radscorpion. She has twin Desert Eagles as her offense, and she is evasive, but against a melee user, I just kept hitting her and using Stimpaks until she finally fell. Matron won't be joyriding on machines ever again.

    So, having that taken care of, I went to speak to Jesse on getting a lift back. With newfound knowledge, as well as the termination of the Raider threat to this region, my character would be one step closer to getting his promotion in the Brotherhood.

    Upon what will be the FINAL, and I mean FINAL, trip to Carbon, I let Vidya know about the fall of the Raiders, which is a huge relief for her. Considering that there is a leadership void in this community, what with the last mayor dying and all that, I feel she'd make a decent figure for this town. Vidya then is told about a mutant being with Matron, and she's horrified because Super Mutants are rough business. She also knows of A ghoul city, except that city was destroyed by Super Mutants years ago. Without much help, I soon see Old Wanderer hanging around. During my time at the mill, I found a Vault 13 flask. I'm certain they must have been a viable trading artifact in the Wasteland, but probably for it's condition rather than sentimental value. Of course, the Old Wanderer is more than humbled at seeing this flask again that he pays me for it. Realizing that it was I who took out the Raiders, the Old Wanderer has a newfound respect towards me and decided that I should have what it takes for becoming a Brotherhood member.

    Being a former Brotherhood member must also mean he should understand mutants, and he remembers the horrors of a creature known as "the Master", which was the creator of the mutants that resided from the West Coast, with his mutated being spreading throughout a temple like plague. Because of this threat, he gives me a few Stimpaks for any upcoming scuffles. I then ask about the ghoul city, and he knows it's location. He calls it the city of Los, and provides directions there. He's pretty much finished with helping the survivors of Carbon learn to fend for themselves, so at long last, I complete the first Chapter.
     
  8. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    CHAPTER 1 THOUGHTS

    To me, what started out as an opener to this game felt underwhelming, but it also doesn't help that it had the name "Fallout" attached to it. If this was just a regular game with the post-apocalyptic theme, I think it would have been just fine, but the franchise it is a part of is so unique in it's structure that it does stick out like a sore thumb. What it has in common with the other Fallout games is the setting, tribes, species, traits that can be built upon, and a plot about somebody starting out that will one day uncover some great (and horrifying) truth. What it doesn't have in common is a morality-based format (which is something that was easier to execute in text-based dialogue games and also on the PC, because for the most part, even today, making moral choices in a video game either doesn't carry that much consequences or is very strict about not doing a certain thing if you want the "good" ending), the freedom to approach a tactic in different manners (you can't do Speech checks or lockpicking, so you have to go with an Action Boy in this game), memorable characters, and a feeling that the story is an adventure and not a chore.

    But, before I sound like a disser, I have to say that the game is pretty fun for basic standards. It's got a lot of action, there are opportunities to explore, and from the foundation of the story in general, at least I know that as one chapter closes, another one opens up that means a whole lot more. Dealing with the Raider threat has introduced me to the Super Mutant threat that Brotherhood members cringe at, no matter where they are or how many there are in their faction. The Dutch Ghost has been a good provider in helping me out get ready for this game, and I know what the issue with Super Mutants are even though I haven't read much spoilers besides what he said; they are sterile, and rather than keep grabbing humans and dumping them in F.E.V. in the hopes of maybe getting another Super Mutant that can live for more than a few minutes, some of them would rather find a way to become fertile so that they can have Super Mutant families and officially become a new species instead of constantly having to look for genetically stable people in a world where those kinds of people are few and far between. So, one of them basically had to make a deal with a devil to get humans that they can perform experiments on to see if they can crack the genetic problem. Whether or not my character will understand this, even with their evil intentions, or merely look at the straightforward approach of "Super Mutants = Bad, Fertile Super Mutants = Worse" is going to be the direction.

    Anyway, that's it for Chapter 1, and now it's time to move on to the city of Los Anything.
     
  9. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    CHAPTER 2: Lost in Los

    The chapter with another monologue from our Narrator explaining how the city of Los is a hellhole ransacked with Ghouls that are human haters and that this is both your next destination in search of the Paladins as well as a revelation that what was supposed to be a basic field test in your ability to rendevous at an unpleasant location is turning into something more drastic.

    Upon arriving in Los, a Ghoul Cult Leader and his minions swarm a hapless Wastelander begging for mercy. A devout follower of the Lost, the Cult Leader slaughters the Wastelander in a ritual sacrifice before proclaiming that nobody can enter the city without approval from the Temple of the Lost.

    Hmm... being smooth isn't always an advantage, so our Initiate begins his search by looking for Ghouls who are delusional or bigoted, only to find what's left of a Ghoul named Harold. I'm glad that there is continuity with Harold, as he's in Fallout 2 and Tactics (Fallout 3 being his swan song), but I'm not a fan of this voice. It sounds less wheezy and gravelly and more like Abe Sapien. Harold likes being on the bridge, because it's the calmest part of Los, although he's not big on info I need. He does need my help, though, about those missing parts of his, and asks to find his arm, eye, and big toe. So, I accept.

    Then, looking for other people to interact with, I find Hieroglyphus... Heiroglypia... Heiro... I'm just gonna call him Fred. Fred isn't fond of regular humans so it's more of a "Either buy or get out" mentality of his. Afterwards, Fred offers an opportunity to make caps in a bloodsport, so curious as to the stakes, I accept. The first wave is regular radscorpions and a few albino radscorpions, and I make some good money. The second wave featured mostly the toxic spewing variety that I love so much, and afterwards, I decided that was it. The third wave might be 5 of those things and a Giant Radscorpion, so I ain't gonna bother.

    The last ghoul I can talk to on the bridge is Giese, a cockney Ghoul with some info on him, though none on the Brotherhood. He offers me a job to find stuff to build custom weapons, so I was interested if I manage to stumble upon them down the road. With that, I head over to the other side of the bridge, where the Ghouls are less friendly.

    At first, most of the Ghouls just stand there and ignore me, with a few attacking out of random. Then, once I made my way to the main part of the bridge, every Ghoul started attacking. Out of curiousity, I wondered why they were attacking me, because it's pretty clear they are not feral since they have complete control over themselves and can manipulate weaponry. Then I realized they are mercenaries and like humans, Ghoul mercenaries do the work of whomever pays their salaries.

    This part required me to jump over pipes sticking out and walking a precarious passage from one part to another, while eating gunfire and showing those Ghouls some respect. Also, I see cyberdogs for the first time, although they are just dogs with a metal ribcage and lack those brain chambers.

    After all of this, I finally can access the docks, where I hear two mercenaries worry about the potential Ghoul/Super Mutant alliance. Although both are derived from humans, neither come to terms under any circumstance, so this Ghoul community is probably afraid of what might happen if they are duped by the mutants.

    When I got down to the docks for the first time, I thought that I was getting a breather, as all of the Ghoul mercenaries fighting me were using melee weapons. Unfortunately, I would find out that quite a few had access to laser guns. And then, I would discover Glowing Ones, who were dumb and brutish, but had strength and could lob projectiles at me. As my Stimpak supply dwindled, I grew more antsy. However, through all of this, I found a rotting arm and an eyeball.

    Leaving the first dock area to reach the warehouse district, I was even more cautious at all that was coming at me because I was getting weaker and the road wasn't getting much easier. Thankfully, I unlocked the path back to the West Bridge where I could recover a bit. I got a Mortar made by Giese, and after visiting Hieronymous (or Fred), I sold my extra equipment and, hurting for Stimpaks, realized that they had Stimpaks after all! I know, once again, this guy was a complete idiot, but I forgot that these merchants sold Stimpaks and I didn't have to worry about just scavanging for them. Considering my intake on caps was over 20,000, I could comfortably restock myself and now just vow to resupply myself every chance I can. With two parts of Harold's body recovered, I went and gave them back to him, and he was happy to have his missing arm and gigantic eye restored, although I was worried about never finding that toe of his. With all that finished, I went back down to continue my explorations.

    During all this, I discovered that what is now Los had a Vault-Tec shipping facility, and that's where I found a few Super Mutants hanging out, completing that objective. They are powerhouses, even moreso than the Glowing Ones, but even they are mortal.

    I was confused about the part where, in the Vault-Tec building, a macabre chamber was erected with a sacrifice at the altar of a Vault Boy statue. Thinking this might be a hazard, I hesitated until I decided to look at the sacrifice, which opened the way for me. Turning around the alley had me find the missing toe, meaning once I return to the bridge, Harold should be set.

    Upon completion of this part, I moved on to the Holding Pens, where another Ghoul merchant, Seirynius... or Cyrus... or, ah dammit, I'm calling this man George, was to be found! Like his brother, George is a merchant and he wants me to give Fred an unimportant-looking parcel for when I return to the safe zone.

    After George, I enter the Church of the Lost, where the leader on a PA system, tells his followers what humans are and how the Ghouls were forged from the mistakes of mankind. Because of this, humans that still exist must pay for their forefathers' sins. Here's the thing; these humans didn't do anything wrong and are in an even worse shape than the Ghouls. So, I have to bust through more of these rotting mercs to find prison keys to save all of them before I can move on to the Torture Chamber, where my destiny awaits.

    Here, the leader of the Brotherhood of Steel, Rhombus, is being tormented by the Cult Leader. Although the titanic ghoul spews some philosophy on the Brotherhood and the Church are similar, Rhombus does not buy into the ghoul's delusions. The Cult Leader then sets off to prepare for Rhombus's execution the following morning. Upon arriving, I speak to Rhombus, who is ecstatic that backup has arrived... and then mightily pissed that it's just me. Having to point who the free man and who the tied-up man are, Rhombus relents and asks me to get the Church Key from the Cult Leader. Speak of the devil, here he is.

    It is here that I finally have an audience with the leader of the Church of the Lost; Blake. Thou may speak of prophecies, yea thou has no comprehension of what he speaks of. Asking any questions with Blake, be it ghouls or about the secret Vault-Tec Vault, prove to be futile, as his brain has rotted away with only the scriptures of Robert Blake to guide his speech mannerisms, and a lengthy boss fight ensues.

    Compared to Jane (whom I have referred to as the Matron... or Mardok in the first day, because the in-game script doesn't refer to her official name but instead her social status as a Raider), Blake is a more brutal Chapter Boss foe. His health is massive, and although he only has a basic swinging attack and a shockwave strike, that sword of his is more than enough to cause a world of hurt to somebody who has been hardened by the Wasteland. I died the first time because I had underestimated my Stimpak supply, so I made sure to double what I had prior to the first battle just to be on the safe side against Blake.

    Upon finally felling blake, I was able to liberate Rhombus from his shackles, where he would have me escort him to where he hid the key to the hidden vault. Apparantly, there is a secret chamber somewhere in Los where there was an underground vault structure. What of, you aren's so sure, but as a Brotherhood member, it was your task to follow Rhombus to it.

    The path there isn't difficult; just stay with him, and you'll be fine, although prior to my rematch with Blake, I upgraded my fists to the most powerful version imaginable. I like the in-your-face approach, after all.
    Once Rhombus finds the key, he is ambushed by a suicidal Ghoul. These Ghoul Kamikazes are bad news, as they like to swarm and then explode! It took me a few tries to get that this part, because I found them annoying and they did catch me off guard the first time. Once you survive, Rhombus wakes up long enough to give you both the key and his Brotherhood emblem as proof of your worthiness. I pegged him about what happened at Carbon, and he was more than irritated at my resolve, saving that, while harsh, was for the betterment of humanity. With that, he passes out.

    Rhombus may not be out, but he is sure down, and I can't do anything with him anymore. I have to fight my way back up the Bridge area to find out some info about the Vault, and it was lengthy, but I did make it up there. I started by giving Fred the package from George. Little did I realize what I had just done.
    Next, I went to Harold to give him his toe and allow him to be complete again. I then asked him if he knew anything about Vaults, and he did, although from Harold's story, Vaults weren't exactly the best of things to be safe in, since things kept malfunctioning. That left Giese, and Giese showed me the way.

    A former scientist in the vault, Giese explained that there was a battle between two groups. Giese was somebody who dabbled in robotics, while another faction sided with biological advancements, and ultimately an explosion happened that sent one faction to the surface, and the other deeper underground. Not too happy with his state of affairs on that part of his life, Giese at least is willing to show where the Vault entrance is. Deep within Vault-Tec's facility, of course.

    Where I had found Super Mutants was where I had to go, although this time, they were a lot more imposing. That changed eventually. But, before I could enter, I wanted to be safe and went back down to George's little shop down in the Holding Pen district to let him know what I did. Turns out that package was a bomb and George wanted to kill his brother so he could have a complete stake in selling merchandise in Los. Well, so much for family values in this dump.

    Entering the Vault-Tec facility was a mostly uneventful pilgrimage, wtih the exception of the boss. Some dumbass Mutants were smashing stuff, and set off the security turrets and got killed for their stupidity. These turrets didn't have a lot of tactics, but they did eat away at my health. Although I wanted to smash the components behind them, I had to settle for using grenades and friendly fire to dismantle the majority of them, and my strategy of melee smashing and Stimpak healing to finish off the last two.

    With that completed, I could finally enter Vault-Tec's personal Vault. And thus came to an end of Chapter 2.
     
  10. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    CHAPTER 2 THOUGHTS

    Chapter 2 wasn't as lengthy as the first chapter, as I felt it got to the point. My main issue here was how there were some interesting elements with Ghoul mercenaries and the Church of the Lost that weren't properly utilized. A cutscene with Blake and the Super Mutant leader could have worked out by presenting Blake's delusions and the Super Mutant's ulterior goals, considering that the end of Chapter 1 had that giant freak talking with Jane.

    But, with that done, I move on to the final part of this game, which is the secret Vault deep within Vault-Tec.
     
  11. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    CHAPTER 3: Welcome to the Vault, the Crappiest Place on Earth

    The cutscene to introduce this area by the Narrator explains how Vault-Tec built a series of structures designed to protect people in the event of nuclear warfare, but as all Fallout fans know, most of those Vaults were doomed to fail on purpose. They were little more than science experiments, with only a lucky few able to live long enough to start their own versions of civilization again. Some were vital to the history of the Fallout canon (like Vaults 13, 15, 87, and 101), while others were just random places to pilfer and have fun. And, as we all know, not all Vaults are known, so us fans can goof around with ideas as to how things could go wrong.

    One would have assumed that, with Vault-Tec's own Vault, they'd have everything under complete control. But, the world is not perfect, and even the best laid plans of mice and men mean nothing if the beliefs of a few can manipulate the destiny of the whole. The game then cuts to a scene of a Shop-Tec doing a recorded pitch on the wonders of Vault-Tec vaults, with a Super Mutant enjoying it, and then getting frustrated, and then destroying the contraption.

    I get this prompt letting me know about lasers. The red lasers can cause instant death, meaning I have to be careful with manuevering around them. I messed around with a console that had two buttons, neither of which did anything I noticed. A short while later, two Super Mutants are waiting for the end of their shift, with one having a bathroom emergency. Having to go past the most advanced defense system ever for a toilet, this Mutie relieves himself without bothering to lift the toilet seat lid up.

    Upon entering a terraformed part of the facility, with natural grass and trees (something unheard of in the Wasteland), I am swarmed by these giant bugs. They might have been mutated from aphids or other creatures, but I'm gonna call them bedbugs. They are swarmers and can take away lots of health in a hurry if you aren't careful.

    Further exploration yields that I must go deeper into the facility to find what I came here to stop, although I am worried that the Super Mutants have made this into their own squallish hovel, as there is a lot of blood and fecal matter. There's even a wall of shit!

    The second floor of this place is the library, where some people used the holotape archives as a secret passageway that requires manipulation. The first two puzzles are pretty easy, but the third required a lot of trial and error in figuring out how the advance. A fourth puzzle requires proper configuring in order to open another set of shelves that could lead me to my keycard that would allow me to reach the third floor.

    This floor was dark and most of the stuff didn't work, which meant I had to find my way to a power source. Upon doing so, I activated all the doors, as well as the laser systems, meaning I would finally learn the hard way on touching the red lasers by mistake. Eventually, I go back to a command room where I could guide this little robot to a switch to deactivate the defense system. It moves really slow, but at the cost of its health, can be boosted, although one issue I had to deal with was how two Super Mutants wanted to smash it.

    With that out of the way, I could finally advance further into the facility and perhaps discover any secrets Vault-Teec had in wait. But, somebody was already waiting for me.

    It is here I finally meet the Super Mutant who had arranged a deal with Jane for slaves earlier in my adventure, Attis. Attis is more than impressed with my efforts, but he is a lion, and the way of the jungle has the lion dominate all others. Inquiring his knowledge, Attis reveals that the tendencies of humans allowed him to get what he wanted instead of having to suffer fools with the Ghoul mercenaries and worshippers from above. And it was I who granted him his ultimate wish. Before combat, he mentions a weapon of importance, but what of? He doesn't reveal.

    This is the sixth boss in this game, and Attis is immune to laser attacks. In a sense, I treated this like I had done with Blake, where I had to rely on melee attacks and regular healing, as he would get faster as his health went down. He had some goons with him, but that didn't mean a whole lot for me.

    Upon defeating Attis, I expected him to have a death speech, only for me to be ambushed by Super Mutants wearing special armor. Although Attis is more than impressed with the Initiate's resolve and abilities, to him, that guy's usefulness is over and mentions that, deep below the Vault, lie creatures that go insane at the smell of blood. Chopping off Cyrus's arm, he plans to leave him to these creatures.

    Luck would have it where a random girl showed up to see my body lying in the middle of some junk. I don't have an arm anymore, and my health is steadily dropping. During this condition, I cannot run, jump, or use most of my weapons. In a good way, the scorpions that I had dealt with in the past were my adversaries as I followed this girl to safety, but in a bad way, I was followed by creatures. They are supposed to be deathclaws, but they more look like Yao Guai than deathclaws to me!

    Upon safe arrival, Cyrus collapses, and is rushed into what is known as the Garden. There, he is tended to and given a new arm. So, there were some survivors after all in this crazy experiment gone wrong. And, they needed my help. But, it was time for me to finally call it a night. From here on out, I'm only playing this nightly so I can take care of other tasks.
     
  12. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    (Typed on March 16th, 2015)

    Remember when I said I was gonna do this nightly? I lied.

    Upon waking up, the Initiate speaks to the Garden's security leader, Patty. Patty explained that the biological scientists still here were able to work out the arm situation of yours, and also wondered how I ended up here. With the threat of Super Mutants hanging in the balance above them, Patty decides that it's time for a hasty retreat of whomever's left here. So, an elaborate plan begins where first I have to escort a man to a part of the Vault where he can work on the airshaft functions, shutting off the recirculating air supply, and giving them a reason (and a way) to escape.

    After visiting Mary, the girl who saved me, I go and stock up on supplies and begin my long trek with the guard throughout this web of robotic sentries that shoot everything on sight. The path requires a lot of backtracking as I have to go around tunnels to avoid forcefields. However, I decided to keep the guy stationed all the way at the beginning of the area so I could clear out as many threats as possible before allowing him to move on himself. This was time consuming, and started to wear on my tolerance for this game.

    Upon reaching the command center, I had to protect him for a few moments while he got everything online. Afterward, I had to manually restart the circuits in another part of this area for him. If there was a problem, he was able to fix it, although dealing with laser-firing drones was something I had to learn to deal with.
    There were two circuits that I had to reestablish, and once I accomplished it, I was ready to head back for the next phase of work. Unfortunately for the engineer, he died at the mechanical hands of a lowly drone.
    With that depressing issue, I had to move on and shut the airflow myself, fighting through more robots, but along the way, I had to deal with an even greater nuisance. Lasers were back, and I had to wander around to shut them off. They were more annoying than the books earlier because the books don't kill you. This required a lot of backtracking just to make my way through this segment and reach the vital area where I could complete this objective.

    But, there were already Nightkin. They wore armor in this game to differentiate themselves from the other Super Mutants because they were originally palette swaps in the PC Fallout games. And, as such, they relied on Stealth Boys to turn invisible and attack. They weren't tough as they were problematic in how many there were. It was a breather, though, one I'd never experience again.

    After this little spiel, I moved on back to the Garden to let Patty know the good news. Their moving plans finalized, she lets me know that they would have been gone by now, if it wasn't for the fact that the scientist holding a special keycard had been dragged into the ruins by the deathclaws. Knowing this is yet another area I have to waste time in, I prepare myself for the most annoying area in this fucking game; the Vault Ruins. After restocking, I continue into where I had fallen into their world to search for a guy who may or may not have already passed through the digestive tract of a genetic abomination.

    The return to the Ruins saw real deathclaws this time, so at least I felt they did something right for this phase of the story. They were powerful, as usual, but I just smashed my way through them as I continued through the ruins. Along the way, I found Mary's missing ring, but I didn't bother going back to give it to her. Well... that was a mistake I soon found out.

    The next area of the Ruins are a series of warped tunnels and rusted walls where this game really gave me the middle finger. I got stuck in a room where I had to fight endless waves of deathclaws and gigantic deathclaws, whom my point of view, were cyclopian! Eventually, I realized I had to break a terminal to mess up the door to get out. Then, I had to figure out how to unlock the damn gate, so I had go BACK into that stupid room to hit the switch from the other side to move on. A Shop-Tec machine allowed me to replenish my Stimpak supplies.
    The third area introduced me to the Deathclaw nursery, where those little monsters pop from their sacs along with their parents and relatives, and this was not only a labyrinth, but a massive one. I don't even have the strength to talk about this area, so I'll move on to the boss segment.

    I find the scientist warning me to not only flee, but destroy this place. When he was referring to "her", for a second, I thought "Oh, God... Patty's turning on me...", when I realized that I didn't fight through all these deathclaws just to go out on easy street. The Mama Deathclaw that the scientist spoke up charged at me and ate the scientist for dinner. So, not only do I have to worry about the Mama Deathclaw, I must defeat it if I want to ever leave this freakin' hellhole!

    Mama Deathclaw is fast and strong, and has range, and can heal itself in radioactive pools. But, that was her weakness, as I was willing to wade into those pools and smack her with my Super Sledge as many times as I wanted because, guess what, I can heal myself, too! This wasn't as annoying as the other fights, but I think I just got lucky this time.

    Upon successful defeation of this boss, I got the keycard and was expecting a shortcut. Instead of that, I had to fight my way BACK to the Garden, where now there were invisible deathclaws! At this point, I decided not to fight these damn things and just run to the exit, ignoring all deathclaws that may have licked a Stealth Boy, midget Yao Guai-esque deathclaws, cyclopian deathclaws, and the deathclaw mafia. I wanted to get OUT!
    Returning to that frustrating area yielded more frustration as the invisble deathclaws were there, and I had to go around a different path. This is where I died from bottomless pit falling for the first time in this game, which pissed me off because I thought I had the distance!

    So, thankfully, the shortcut meant I found a new way to the Garden. Though, that wasn't exactly a sight of enjoyment as the Super Mutants worked their way into the Garden. Seeing the Garden's merchant hold his own for that short time he did was cool, although those were some clunky death animations for everybody.
    I have to now follow everybody that got out, which meant slogging through these lumbering galoots once again. I was getting pretty irritated as the idea of reaching the finish line kept looking more and more like an illusion, but I struggled my way to the Labratory area.

    The lab was big and mazey, like most of these damn areas, coupled with the fact that Super Mutants wandered around all over the place. As I continued, I noticed the monorail terminals that were around here. Perhaps at one point, these monorails during the developlment of the Vault Tec Vault would have allowed passage to the world and back, allowing for an above-ground civilization to be built while the important factors to post-destruction development stay safe. I had to slaughter a specific Super Mutant Brute to get an eyeball to advance to the second part of the lab.

    This part... ugh. I hated seeing those stupid bedbugs grow large by jumping into the F.E.V. vats because I don't like bugs as it is. Plus, they split into little bugs, as well! As I continued, I saw a cutscene where a Super Mutant Brute was devoured by a really, really, really, really large deathclaw. And, that's going to be a fun boss fight... right? Well, that deathclaw must've had some mirrors on the other side of that window, because it wasn't that big as the cutscene made it out to be. It's destruction saw the remnants of a scientist and a keycard that allowed me to move on to the final part of the lab, where Attis would be at.

    And this is where I gave up on stumbling around on my own and looked for help. You had a terminal where you had to have a 3 digit combination to advance. Bear in mind that there are no clues at all that I found, meaning you would have to randomly pick numbers until you got the right combination. That is a million shades of unfair, especially that what might be the final boss is on the other side! I must thank the GameFAQs person who suffered years ago to get that combination (929) so I could move on to the last area before the actual final boss.
    With one last Shop-Tec with me, I bought a Turbo Super Sledge and bought some more Stimpaks and laser ammo. Then I foolishly wasted money on a robotic ally that died in the next room. What this part was had four chambers where super mutant enemies would wander, but one of them would have a larger health meter than the rest. But, you have to defeat everybody, both the regular guys and the special one, as well. There was 30 in the first, 30 in the second, 30 in the third, and I finally got variety in the fourth, where Nightkin awaited.
    Here is one of the stupidest ideas ever in utilizing these brutes. The one that had the most health WAS A MIDGET!!!

    This guy was smaller than me! Either there was an abnormality during his development, or these people were really masochistic in developing this game, because the dwarf had the most health of all the healthed-up Super Mutants.

    After slaying the littliest mutant, I could finally make my way to the core of this research facility, where Attis awaited. My policy was always saving, even though this game only allows 64 saves and my brother didn't set the clock when he wanted to watch his movies today.

    Upon arriving, Attis looked... different. He was gray and the hair that he had looked like he was transforming into what was Frieza's third form. It was here that Attis revealed the ultimate weapon. It wasn't a massive death ray like ARCHIMEDES II; it wasn't a stockpile of neuro grenades; it wasn't even the key to the world. This place researched fertility for those affected my mutation. In a sense, this was an important tact for these scientists, as if mankind wasn't able to breed, or at least breed able-bodied humans, then humanity would be doomed, no matter if all the Vaults actually did work (but then, how would they do their wicked social experiments?). Attis felt that this could extend to Super Mutants, and if Super Mutants were fertile, this was the ultimate weapon, as the army could now be infinite, and not limited to however many tens of thousands of people were dumped in Mariposa F.E.V. tanks.

    But, for Attis, this wasn't meant to be. Using himself as the guinea pig, Attis didn't see a cure, but instead, a new malady. The unfortunate effects of this failed experiment were mutating him even worse than what he already was, but instead of admitting failure and requesting to be put out of his misery, Attis spins this into a positive, citing that mutants will prevail.

    And my rematch with Attis commences, where he is not only fast, but has stealth abilities and brutal melee and ranged attacks. Whitting his health to half only yields him growing even larger and more erratic. To paraphrase Crow T. Robot from "Beginning of the End" (no, I'm not using the "They're not gonna let us drop the bomb, don't answer it" line), oh goodie, he got even larger! It was here that I was thankful for all that laser weaponry, as it did a number on him because melee attacks weren't as effective against Attis as they were against most of the bosses. However, I had found a Mini Nuke by chance during this adventure, and I wasted it on a failed attack against Attis during this phase. But, I can use Mini Nukes in GOOD Fallout games!

    After successfully taking out most of his health, Attis mutates even further by exploding. Making his former Master proud, Attis's random growths multiply, grow into tentacles, eyes, and other structures, and overwhelm this vault complex. To make it all worse, all of these things were connected to Attis's consciousness.

    This wasn't a fun fight at all, which is always a great way to finish a game. To deal with it, I had to work my way out of this lab by first dealing with an eyeball that required three health bar depletions just to destroy, while those gigantic bugs kept showing up. Then, after that, I had to fight one of the mouths of this new blunder. This mouth liked using inhaling attacks, and I couldn't hit it with melee attacks because it would just eat me. I decided to use my grenades and rockets on this thing to move on.

    The next room saw even more tentacles and strange growths as Attis is proclaiming this to be the next
    advancement of creatures to conquer the earth, even as other Super Mutants are horrified at this thing. Another mouth awaited, which needed to be destroyed.

    In this following room, I would run into Patty, who is now being eaten alive by this abomination. She was able to get the survivors out of the area and lets me know how to put an end to this thing once and for all before it could spread, but because she is now part of this creature, wants me to put her out of her misery. A few laser shots do the trick to make sure that Patty doesn't suffer a much worse fate and at least can have the luxury of being reunited with her ancestors in a place less messed-up.

    A third mouth, surrounded by a dozen tentacles, awaited me here. Low on the good stuff, I had to rely on all my ammo I collected throughout the game to shoot at the mouth, which took forever and a day, but ultimately the mouth was destroyed and I could activate the self-destruct mechanism.

    With 120 seconds left, I had to scurry to the monorail on the other side of the yard from that massive room, ignoring both tentacles and Super Mutants. But, I made it. Thankfully. And finally.

    Boarding the monorail and getting out of the dodge, the self-destruct mechanism is an atomic reaction that destroys the creation born from Attis, the Super Mutants, the deathclaws, and the city of Los. A massive mushroom cloud signifies the end of all this madness. And this game, at long last.

    Credits play, and the final cutscene is the three recruits staring at the cloud from a safe distance. You don't get a proper coronation or anything after saving the world from all of this.

    The post-game reward is a series of images of the female characters in pinup drawings. While they looked nice, this wasn't a good reward for wasting 13 hours on this type of game.
     
  13. JDogindy

    JDogindy Tribal with a Baked Brain

    Feb 20, 2015
    CHAPTER 3 THOUGHTS

    So, this is the entire payoff? The story element was there, and the idea of super mutant fertility is not only plausible, but should have been employed much earlier throughout it, where you could fathom the nightmarish possibility of them actually not being limited in number, as opposed to just going all the way to the end to see the part where it's all "Oh, NOW that's why he's here!"

    CLOSING THOUGHTS

    When I started this game idea of mine, I knew I had to have low expectations, and I did, but for a while, I thought this game had promise and could have been fun. But, when you have action RPGs, especially from this generation, you do run the risk of the game becoming less of an adventure and more of a chore. Some games are able to pull this off by providing an ample balance of exploring lands and civilizations where you can interact with characters. Most of these games are in act-based arcs, meaning that you can miss out on a few things if you leave the region after defeating the faction boss or solving the complex puzzle, and that alone would give you incentive to replay the game as a different character.

    While Brotherhood of Steel shares these elements from other games, it fails at providing a sense of wonderment. You basically go from one convoluted and complicated area to another where the ultimate payoff is merely something pointing you to the next series of convoluted and complicated areas. Your actual abilities to interact with people are rare, and as a result, you don't gain the ability to fully appreciate your surroundings. What good is an RPG if you don't have the chance to relax and chat with people of interesting backgrounds, because that is an important element to building your game world. The other Fallout games have presented that where there are multiple microcosms in a macrocosm, and each area has it's own quirks and cast. Ultimately, there would be a payoff to your time in this area, and you would move on to the next region. Here, that wasn't exactly the case.

    From a gameplay standpoint, this was pretty boring. Guns are an invaluable staple for most Fallout gamers, yet I felt that my ability to actually use them wasn't as effective as it should have been. Enemies had no problems hitting you with their bullets, but you had a harder time with them. It wasn't until laser weaponry gets in your grasp that you can start seeing results. Melee weapons and power fists are more effective, but they put you in harm's way more.

    The story in full has quite a few interesting elements in; the Super Mutant infertility, the path of a Brotherhood initiate, and delving into Vault-Tec's own machinations. The problem is that these little gold nuggets are surrounded by barrels of iron pyrite. You don't have a moral guideline of your choosing, as your personality is predefined as that of a smartass. As a result, the gameplay is very straightforward and the ability to find alternate paths to the same goal is unvailable; you simply have to trudge from Point A, killing hundreds of random enemies, to Point B. What makes a game like KOTOR or Jade Empire from this generation fun was the alternate paths that could explored, as I probably mentioned already. You ultimately have a clear-cut goal, and unless it's an obvious dilemma, at the very least forks in the path can be allowed, let alone encouraged.
    Upon completion of this game, I felt no joy in conquering it, only the feeling of my compulsion fading away as one less task was completed. What I find amazing is that, if you remove all of the Fallout elements, this isn't even a good game with this foundation because the mechanics aren't polished, the layouts are confounding, and I'll say it before and I'll say it again, it's redundancy that rules the roost.

    For most of you, there was the fear of me actually falling in love with this game, and for a few little bits here and there, I did. But, those are the cherries I can pick off the tree and use as elements of my own canonical storytelling. I can safely say I did not enjoy this game as a whole, and I will join the many Fallout fans that have played this game in encouraging people not to try it. I wrote this diary with that intention in mind because this is an indepth explination of the whole story. I may have messed up on a detail here or there, but aside from the Super Mutants, there wasn't a whole lot of connection in the acts. You don't know what becomes of Carbon or the fates of the friendly Ghouls (well, besides Harold) of Los, and although this game was about you trying to become a full-fledged Brotherhood member, that payoff is Rhombus giving you an insignia that you can sell to any merchant! You don't get a "two months later" ending where the intiates become Brotherhood members as Paladins wander the Texas Wasteland to inform survivors a different story on the atomic blast that happened that fateful day. It's just them looking at the pretty cloud.

    So... with that comes to my end of ever having to deal with this game. I am gonna put it up with a bunch of other random titles, and because my complete editions of New Vegas and 3 are coming in the mail in the next couple of days, I can at least complete the experience from those titles.

    Or, to summarize what this entire diary was meant to accomplish; Don't Play This Game!