Could the settlement of San Francisco in Fallout 2 have been written better?

Discussion in 'General Fallout Discussion' started by ElloinmorninJ, Jun 30, 2020.

  1. ElloinmorninJ

    ElloinmorninJ Where'd That 6th Toe Come From?

    444
    Jun 25, 2019
    Why not both, and give Scientology its own unique thing
     
  2. Tribalus Maximus

    Tribalus Maximus First time out of the vault

    28
    Dec 27, 2018
    Scientology isn't postapocalyptic, it's modern and it does not fit the narrative.

    Besides, half of the world, we in Europe at least, don't know what the heck scientology actually is so putting it in a game would be an easter egg for US players only. Easter eggs aren't good at worldbuilding.
     
  3. ElloinmorninJ

    ElloinmorninJ Where'd That 6th Toe Come From?

    444
    Jun 25, 2019
    Ok ok I see this as a challenge. I’m going to try and rewrite the Hubologists in a way that makes them nuanced and fitting to the Fallout setting
     
  4. Tribalus Maximus

    Tribalus Maximus First time out of the vault

    28
    Dec 27, 2018
    The thing is:
    So the scientology gained popularity in 1980 1990 US in rich California. California is rich due to movie business. But! Our timeline and Fallout timeline are different. US in Fallout world is much more isolationistic than US nowadays. So we don't know if there was a worldwide Hollywood movie business in Fallout world. As it can be seen TV in Fallout world are like in 1950-1960 (and it is 2077 after all).

    I guess world development after World War 2 was much more slower than it was in real history.

    As we know California from Fallout was base for large companies like Vault-tec or West-tek, so instead of movie business apparently California went into technology development.

    BTW Have a good time rewriting them :)
     
  5. ElloinmorninJ

    ElloinmorninJ Where'd That 6th Toe Come From?

    444
    Jun 25, 2019
    Ok, here's my rewrite idea.

    The Hubologists of Fallout world could have still have developed into a semi-powerful cult. IRL scientology was founded in 1953. So, they could've been endorsed by celebrities of the pre-war, like Vera Keyes or Dean Domino (not them specifically, but similar famous people). California still could've had a movie-making business along with technological development. Maybe the Hubologists could've had ties with the pre-war US, reporting celebrities who were likely to be "communists" similar to a real life scandal during the red scare.

    And after the war, I'd want the Hubologists to be hiding out underground in their secluded private bunker for years and years, until they eventually emerged to try and go out and spread their religion. When they did, they came into conflict with the CoTC refugees, Shi, and BoS, but were mostly left to their own devices in their secluded spot. In my version, they Hubologists don't want to go to space or any silly stuff like that. They just want to take control of the area, and wipe out all the heretics in order to create their own society.

    Maybe they could have secretive ties with the Enclave, getting traded some cheap weapons in exchange for slaves, spies, and intelligence on the San Fran Region (not knowing the Enclave plan to wipe them out soon).

    -

    Also, some other stuff to change.

    -Make them less advanced. Maybe their secluded underground base could be full of advanced tech, but make it so that the base is all derelict and damaged, full of broken down things the Hubologists couldn't understand (half-functioning TV-screens and computer monitors) and make the Hubologists teaching less parodying of Scientology and more unique, less jokes.

    -No parodies of Tom Cruise. Give them a more eerie feeling. But separate and unlike the CoTC, they aren't easily accepting of Wastelanders who want to join up; theyre suspicious.

    -Maybe have them more present in the world? Have a branch in a place besides NCR and San Fran. Maybe....Broken Hills!

    -

    Heres a question for you, Tribalus Maximus; What do you plan for the Children of the Cathedral being about in your imagination?
     
  6. Tribalus Maximus

    Tribalus Maximus First time out of the vault

    28
    Dec 27, 2018
    Ach, the Children of the Cathedral, an afterwar cult of Los Angeles. Well, quick summary first: they cooperated with the Master, they received medical supplies and security in exchange for intel and recruits, they gave care to the poor people of the wasteland.

    The thing is
    Vault Dweller destroyed their command structure and cut out their main supplier. Without the Master there is simply no one to back them up. What happened to them? They disbanded after Fallout1 on their own. We could force them into New Reno I guess. New Reno is full of prostitutes, drug addicts and slaves. Poor people who need help and comfort. CotC would fit there. BTW New Reno is chaotic on its own so a cult would fit there perfectly.

    I don't think they would be something more than one city (one location eg. New Reno) phenomenon.
     
  7. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Vault Archives Overseer

    Mar 16, 2013
    Dianetics actually exploded in popularity in the 1950s, it was a huge trend. The hubologists fit really well for Pre-war america IMO, I just think their post-war versions needed to be a little less scientology esque with the superficial glam and more like a mystic religion with insane beliefs.
     
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  8. Tribalus Maximus

    Tribalus Maximus First time out of the vault

    28
    Dec 27, 2018
    Ok, lets say 1950 = 2050 Fallouts US. Dianetics is a thing.

    Question.

    Will it be a thing after nuclear Holocaust? After destruction of all it is known? All, "And from the ashes of nuclear devastation, a new civilization would struggle to arise" - Fallout intro. What is a center of mass here, pre war culture or post war redevelopment?

    I can say even without war things popular in 1950 lose their meaning. An example. One thing will be Marilyn Monroe, quite popular in 1950 - 1960, known nowadays but I don't think anyone knows her from movies except maybe movie geeks, totally forgoten by 2050 - 2060.

    Would nuclear war make pre war culture irrelevant?
     
  9. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Vault Archives Overseer

    Mar 16, 2013
    It's a completely fair point. Even the Abrahamic religions barely survived the Great War, having melded into some unified singular adaption that the New Canaanites practice. I can't imagine Dianetics would perservere.

    Still, I think the idea of a fanatical group living in San Francisco is a good idea, and I think the space obsession is a fun aesthetic for the cult. I suppose you could make their star-worship a post-war invention.
     
  10. ElloinmorninJ

    ElloinmorninJ Where'd That 6th Toe Come From?

    444
    Jun 25, 2019
    That’s never actually made sense to me. The Abrahamic religions are huge
     
  11. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Vault Archives Overseer

    Mar 16, 2013
    We don't know the extent and nature of their blending with the New Canaanites. I would say that they're just Mormons but they don't tend to focus on the Book of Mormon itself at all, and Graham refers to people as "gentiles" which suggests a Jewish influence. I highly doubt there's any Islamic connection.
     
  12. ElloinmorninJ

    ElloinmorninJ Where'd That 6th Toe Come From?

    444
    Jun 25, 2019
    No I mean Christianity should be preserved all across the wastes. I’d be okay with bibles and scriptures being lost, but 2077 was like the 1950s in this ‘verse. Christianity should be literally pervasive everywhere
     
  13. Iprovidelittlepianos

    Iprovidelittlepianos A Smooth-Skin

    621
    May 12, 2020
    Well the culture of post war America is radically different that pre war America. I’d be willing to bet many pre war Americans just called themselves Christian and went to church, but didn’t really believe in it. After the war they mostly abandoned their old world religions with the exceptions of devout and evangelical members
     
  14. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Vault Archives Overseer

    Mar 16, 2013
    As a thought for replacing the Hubologists, what about the idea of implementing "The Abbey" (cut from the game and restored in Killap's mod) into San Francisco? Though I suppose they might be too much of a retread of the Followers in the Boneyard.
     
  15. Hardboiled Android

    Hardboiled Android Vault Senior Citizen

    Jun 7, 2015
    Gentile is an actual term used by Mormons to refer to non-Mormons since the 19th century.

    Ultimately, I think the reason that Abrahamic religions really aren't such a big focus of the setting is 1) because it does add to the bleakness and "newness" of the setting to have something as fundamentally Old World as the Abrahamic religions and 2) because for a bunch of video game devs in the 90s, themselves likely largely irreligious and living in a largely irreligious society, writing about or engaging with Christianity would feel weird: Christianity (and religion in general) is so absent from their individual lives except where it exists unspoken permeating society that it would feel weird to write about it. I think this latter point was why they were able to engage with Mormonism fairly successfully in Honest Hearts - its alien enough that they were able to seriously engage with its themes. Plus, Mormon survivalists are just the right balance of weird and realistic to fit into just about any post-Apocalyptic setting.

    Ultimately the lack of religion in the setting beyond cults (which ultimately serves the purpose of dunking on organized religion in the abstract) is always something that's deeply annoyed me, because even though I'm irreligious I think religion is an incredibly valid and integral part of the human experience - it's one of the reasons I so enjoy works like the Book of Eli and A Canticle for Leibowitz. Even more annoying in Fo4 was the "Church of All Faiths," a totally uninteresting vague New Age non judgemental thing where you were invited in to the chapel to contemplate whatever the heck you want. I find this choice, which was ultimately based in Political Correctness IMO, to be far worse then the (still bad) glib apathy of Californian game devs in the 90s.
     
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  16. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Vault Archives Overseer

    Mar 16, 2013
    I didn't know that about Mormons and the use of the word "gentile". I suppose they really are just Mormons then. Which, honestly, makes total sense.

    I think the New Canaanites were definitely a good rep for religion in Fallout, although I do wish we could have gotten to see the town itself as was originally planned for Van Buren. But I agree, I think theological societies are massively underexplored in Fallout. I think a conflict between two major religious factions (of which both are post-war faiths) over some sort of ideological schism would be really interesting. It could be over "holy land" or it could be a debate over some shared religious history, either way it'd be a really good backdrop for a story that isn't about fighting over resources but is still so intrinsically and consistently human as a cause for war.

    Additionally, theological factions would allow you to go pretty nutty with aesthetics but that's another matter entirely.
     
  17. Hardboiled Android

    Hardboiled Android Vault Senior Citizen

    Jun 7, 2015
    re: Hubbologists not fitting into the setting because it's an American phenomenon and was mostly an 80s/90s thing... first off, it's an American game, sold largely to an American audience, so its not a huge deal if there are inside jokes that are largely confined to American culture. Even moreso, though, Fallout is fundamentally a game about America and the American psychosis in almost every facet. Of course this is ultimately in the service of telling a broader story about human nature, but its through the lense of Americana and its ruins.

    As to it being an 80s/90s thing... I mean, sort of, but as others have pointed out Scientology began in the 1950s. Moreover, what scientology is/was is the ultimate expression of the 50s UFO cult - arguably, Scientology was the only successful (at least for a time) of the countless sci-fi cults that developed in the post-War period, with the possible exception of the Raelians (though even they remained comparatively fringe). Certainly it was the MOST successful.

    Those 50s sci-fi/Doomsday cults absolutely could work within Fallout's aesthetic - after all, almost all were focused upon not only the high technology that the future promised as expressed through a sort of cargo cult, but also upon a coming apocalypse/millenarian catastrophe, and many of them were survivalists. Further, these sorts of cults were almost certainly partially the inspiration for things like the atom-bomb worshippers in Beneath the Planet of the Apes, who were themselves obviously a huge part of the inspiration for the Children of the Cathedral.

    To go in a little more in why the Scientologists being the ultimate expression of the 50s UFO cult works within the setting: they are the ultimate expression of that within the American context. The original UFO cults were based not just out of a profound fear of an uncertain future and the horrors it might bring, but a deep optimism at the potential of humanity to improve itself through hard work and scientific endeavor - essentially, they shared the convictions of the Midcentury American and applied a spiritual dimension to it. But what do we see in Scientology? We see a corruption of that in some ways quite admirable hope, the hypercommodification of it into a big business and the decline of its leaders into a psychotic paranoia that eventually blows the whole rotten edifice apart, until there are just a few clingers-on to the cult left. Again, this is exactly what happened in America - both in real life from the decline of the Midcentury to the 90s and through to today, the continual decline and misappropriation of that optimism for a better tomorrow into something horrific, and in Fallout where the seeming realization of that better tomorrow was forced to its inevitable outcome - blasted apart, wasting away and only dimly registered by the hardscrabble wastelanders of the American West.

    All of this said, were the Hubbologists handled well? Absolutely not, in game they were played purely for laughs. But the underlying concept is a good one that has a lot of potential. But like the Kung-Fu masters of Chinatown or the kooky libertines of the oil tanker, or plenty of other things in Fo2, it was handled too much for laughs.
     
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  18. TheGM

    TheGM The voice of reason

    Aug 19, 2008
    Yeah, it is because they considered themselves to be descendants of one of the lost tribes of Israel, so they kinda look at themselves as jews in a way. couple of them caused a stink some years back when they went around baptizing jewish graves at the cemetery.
     
  19. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Vault Archives Overseer

    Mar 16, 2013
    I'm in total agreement that I think that Scientology suits the world of Fallout and particularly its portrayal of Americana perfectly, however I do think the counter-point brought up in this thread where Fallout should aim to have very little preservations of pre-war culture. Though I would argue that it would add to a sense of the dark humor that after the end of the world Christianity in the form of Mormonism and scientology end up being the surviving artefacts of Old World religion.

    I think you'd just have to adopt it to the post-war world, in that it wouldn't be as blatantly superficial, corporatist and cynically predatory as it is in real life. The absurd pseudo-beliefs would transform into legitimate mysticism and reverence. You could still explore the inherently predatory power-structures of a cult like Scientology, but have it played seriously and the strings of power being pulled in relation to the power-struggles of the post-nuclear world rather than "Haha Tom Cruise and David Miscavige are SILLY"

    Wacko. I went to Temple Square in SLC about three years back when I was touring the western states, I was going to get a copy of the Book of Mormon out of novelty and I'd assumed they'd try and push one on me for free only to discover that you have to buy them and they cost 30 fucking bucks.
     
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  20. Tribalus Maximus

    Tribalus Maximus First time out of the vault

    28
    Dec 27, 2018
    Ok, I get your point. I don't agree with it but I understand it. Thank you for clarifying.

    We create a San Fran Vault and:

    1) (raw theory) Some dianetics make it into the San Fran Vault and during the close down they overtook it by influencing the Vault overseer or by becoming one.
    2) (social experiment theory) Vault-tec simply designed one Vault to be inhabited by dianetics enthusiast, to make a test: will dianetics survive and will they develop a stable post war society.

    My little two ideas how to make it work, any thoughts?