The Enclave: Evil or Machiavellian?

Discussion in 'Fallout 3 Discussion' started by KingArthur, Jul 26, 2019.

  1. Norzan

    Norzan Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Apr 7, 2017
    They are, no matter how much you wanna twist it.
     
  2. Veers

    Veers Fire when ready.

    63
    Jan 3, 2017
    It's not twisting anything, it's simple fact. Everyone you meet is a civil, often polite person. Richardson is a pretty friendly guy. Eden's friendly. Autumn is harsh only because he believes you're an enemy. Even Horrigan isn't that outlandish. The Enclave is never once portrayed as a comically villainous entity. At worst they're extremely determined and consider you a threat, but it never descends into supervillain territory, not even close.
     
  3. Norzan

    Norzan Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Apr 7, 2017
    It's not a fact and you are twisting it. Being a civil and polite person doesn't really change the fact that your plan consist of killing thousands upon thousands of people that are literally just living their lives without harming anyone and the sole reason they deserve such fate is because they are mutated in some capacity or don't fit pre-requesites of the Enclave.

    The entire faction are bunch of comically over the top supervillains. They even have the "control behind the scenes of the government" these types of villains tend to have.
     
  4. Quartz

    Quartz First time out of the vault

    11
    Aug 6, 2019
    I'm sorry, but you'll have to explain to me how that's not relevant to Fallout. It's the same scenario, some people who consider the current state of the world to be bad, and have the power to wipe out mankind to rebuild a world that they consider good.

    Also, what would even be the point of maing skyscrapers in just 150 years (assuming that's feasible)?
    How many children are they supposed to have?
     
  5. Veers

    Veers Fire when ready.

    63
    Jan 3, 2017
    I'll give you this, it isn't fact, but it is subjective. I shouldn't be asserting my opinion as fact and I apologize for that, but you shouldn't be doing the same then.

    Because it's not past 2077 yet and the world hasn't been destroyed by a massive thermonuclear war.
     
  6. Atomkilla

    Atomkilla Hazel Hegemon oTO Orderite

    Dec 26, 2010




    This is literally the first scene when you meet Enclave.
    Enclave soldiers kill an unarmed family in the wasteland. Nay, they blast them to pieces because of ideological difference. And this is done on command of Frank Horrigan, who is by no means a rogue operative outside of boundaries of his organization.

    If you say this isn't evil or comically villainous you are either a very good Enclave roleplayer (and we've had so many of them over the years to the point that they are unofficially unwelcome, though I gotta admit we've had some helpless cases, you are pretty good), or you got some issues. Sincerely hoping it's the former.
     
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  7. Veers

    Veers Fire when ready.

    63
    Jan 3, 2017
    We're never given much context to the scene. It seems implied that the man has connections to the Enclave, or at least knowledge beyond normal wastelanders. Maybe he defected? We'll never know. They're given multiple warnings by both the soldiers and Horrigan, and the man seems pretty resolute in dying rather than helping them.

    Is that evil? Yes, yes it is. However, it's not comically evil. Frank doesn't throw jabs at them or say any one-liners after they die, he doesn't attack the Chosen One or even threaten him, the soldiers don't laugh or make jokes about it, they do it then they leave, the only words being Frank telling the Chosen One it's none of his concern. We learn later that Frank is less of a person now and more of a weapon. We also learn that he isn't trusted by a lot of the Enclave, and there's disagreement over his orders and his methods. Furthermore, much like Eden, he isn't operating on morality, but hardwired intelligence and programming, to an even greater extent than the mostly self-aware Eden. He isn't doing it because it's fun or because he enjoys it, it's because he's programmed to enforce Enclave orders, and if they're disobeyed, he reacts the only way he's programmed how.

    It's evil, but it's no more evil than, say, a wealthy businessman forcing a group of isolationist vault-dwellers to the surface then blocking off their former home so they have no choice but to live under him while policing those who speak up about it, or an army forcing settlers and farmers off their land into poverty and potential starvation, shooting any resistors, so a wealthy brahmin baron or two can claim it for grazing, or soldiers enslaving their enemies after a battle to force them to labor for the rest of their group's benefit or into a military role, both until death. It isn't an evil act given supervillain bravado or dark comedy, it's a cold, calculative action done out of self-assumed necessity, in this case by a living bioweapon that is distrusted and disliked by most of those around him in his own organization.

    Everyone does evil things in Fallout because they're often necessary for survival. Maybe the businessman needed everyone in his slice of the world to join together for mutual benefit and progress. Maybe the army needed more livestock to feed tens of thousands of hungry citizens at home. Maybe the soldiers needed more bodies in their ranks or working back at camp so they could focus on keeping their roads and settlements safe and protected. Maybe the man held knowledge that could be the undoing of the Enclave if their enemies got a hold of it.

    No one group is truly a good side or a bad side. If you want to claim an evil action damns an entire group, then I can't imagine you'd like any faction at all.
     
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2019
  8. Quartz

    Quartz First time out of the vault

    11
    Aug 6, 2019
    Okay, I don't get it, but I won't contest it. Instead let's get a new scenario.
    In the future wonderland with skyscrapers that the enclave builds after their victory, lives an ecologist (yeah, here we go again). You see, the members of the enclave are working real hard, so for them there's nothing like a nice, tasty and well cocked steak after a hard day. But this ecologist cares about animal feelings, so he developes a new branch of FEV and administers a cure to those who thinks alike and leaves the virus loose to affect the unsuspecting Enclave citizens that stopped wearing biohazard protection after somehow cleaning the world of radiation.

    Would this be 'relevant to fallout'?
     
  9. Veers

    Veers Fire when ready.

    63
    Jan 3, 2017
    Three questions and you have your answer:
    What does the ecologist plan to do?
    What goal does he have in mind?
    And, most importantly, do you side with him, the Enclave, or neither?
     
  10. Quartz

    Quartz First time out of the vault

    11
    Aug 6, 2019
    It's like before, the enclave has expanded it's population a lot, very fast and in a pretty vertical (dense) way, and they like meat, so a big feeding, breeding and sacrificing infraestructure is set where animals live without freedom or dignity. The ecologist sees this, he tries to convince people to adopt a vegan lifestyle, he proves it's viability, but they call him a soyboy or reason that the animals are put there by god for man to do as he wishes. This is the world he's been born in, but as much as it pains him, it's savage and reprehensible. However, he also has advocates, that agree on this, they believe the world as it is is bad, but if the right people could start over they could build a better world, one more ethical where man lives in comunity with nature. They believe the world would be good, and they could achieve it. So they accomplish the plan I said before.
    Boom, the enclave project is gone, however, they can rebuild mankind, better than before, they can reproduce and inhabit the old skyscrapers, and even build taller ones!

    So, do you think this ecologists are good guys, just like the enclave was before?

    As for who I side with, I don't see why it's relevant, since what I'm trying to understand on what terms you are talking about morality, but I don't side with any of them, as I see it comiting genocide to shape the world to their liking is a dealbreaker.

    Also, while the discussion originally was (I believe) about wether we could really say the enclave is Evill or not, another important topic that has come up is if they work well as compelling and believable villains or are more on the over the top silly side.
    This is ultimately subjective, but in my own opinion (as they say where i'm from, opinions are like anuses) they don't really work. I think you have to rationalize a lot and read between lines a lot to make them believable, and even then they have both a plan for global anihilation and domination. I bet with that kind of effort even Codpiece could become a compelling villain (this is just a joke, since he's a emotionally driven villain, but there are plenty of stupid comic book and caroon villains that have a plan to make a better wotld through genocide, destruction or domination that could work)
     
  11. Veers

    Veers Fire when ready.

    63
    Jan 3, 2017
    Can he prove his plan has merit? With the Enclave we have sources from within and without that say the human race is growing more mutated and either breaking down and dying out or turning into something that isn't even human anymore. Can he verify that food stocks will run out unless everyone follows his ideas and that he's saving the species by doing what he's doing? If so, then I wouldn't call it completely evil, but I wouldn't side with it. It's relevant to this because player choice means more for who's right and who's wrong than anything else, that's the intent of Fallout in the first place. I would side with the Enclave because that's who I agree with, and maybe others wouldn't, or would side with the ecologist. There's an argument to be made both ways.
     
  12. SquidWard

    SquidWard Pirate and Bankrobber oTO Orderite

    Jun 1, 2018
    Not all good actions are equal. Not all evil actions are equal. How is this hard to grasp? Are you actually fucking with us or something? If you want to claim an evil action damns an entire group? No one is saying, "Oh the Enclave shot an innocent man let's say the entire group is evil." What we are saying is, "Committing genocide on a level that numerically endangers the human race again would make us hate a group."

    As you can see, the actions aren't always equal. It doesn't take a lot of psychological moral development to figure this out. The same even works in reverse. The same action with different punishments isn't always fair and just either. If you stole a candy bar and got your hand cut off, I'm going to take issue with the people that cut your hand off. If you stole a candy bar and had to pay them back twofold or do some small community services, I won't take issue with the people forcing you to do that.

    You can't apply some dumbass blanket onto everything like I imagine you're trying to do. Maybe I'm wrong but are you saying that the NCR officials taking personal bribes and taking people's land by force is the same amount of evil as what the Enclave is trying to do and therefore I should feel disdain for both equally instead of based on the intensity of their injustices and malpractices?

    You know it's not all adobe huts and metal shacks but okay.
     
  13. Veers

    Veers Fire when ready.

    63
    Jan 3, 2017
    That's the thing though, they're not endangering the human race, considering we have multiple reasons to believe the human race isn't evolving to meet the Wasteland, but actively dying out. Even if it is adapting, it's apparently heading to the point we're mutated beyond recognition into humanoids rather than humans. That's not guaranteed of course, it's speculation for a long way off in the future, but it's still there. If it turns out that we mutate to the point of death, or kill each other, or get taken out by mutant creatures, whatever it may be, we're dead. The Enclave's plan isn't to wipe out humanity at all, it's to wipe out those who are mutated or directly, negatively effected by radiation, since they consider them a dangerous thing that will eventually cease to be human anyway.

    If you consider that evil, which it is, it's still not unrealistic, illogical, or not at least understandable from their side, and it shouldn't shock you that a faction that does evil things with a logical point of restoring the world or building a new one, which is all of them, might have people who side with it. This is Fallout, and the simple truth is humanity doesn't look like it's going to survive in the state it's in from all that we see, or at the very least it will be urecognizable at some point biologically from pre-war humanity, and not in a few million years mind you, soon enough that a whole faction was formed on that basis to speed it up even further so we might have a chance at survival and to get rid of what will bring our own destruction a second time. Do you think Unity was completely, comically evil? The Enclave's operating on the exact same framework, except instead of bringing humanity to its supposed second mutated stage here and now for its own survival, it proposes to instead bring the other alternative, dying out, to the mutated population here and now for the survival of the pre-war strata, meaning no eventual mutation into some non-human species and no eventual dying out of the entire species both in a not-so-distant future. Are they right? Well, it's Fallout. You the player decides.

    I've said it before and I'll say it again that I don't think this is necessarily the correct mindset and I do think it's evil, though that's Fallout, and as far as restoring the pre-war world it's the only functioning plan to do it.

    I'd prefer a faction-wide enactment of Autumn's goals though, cooperating with those who aren't overly mutated and working with the Wasteland, to a degree. The Enclave's biggest weakness is that it keeps trying to go man vs. world over and over again. Bend to what's going on and adapt to the Wasteland, or break. I used to hold out hope that'd be an option in a future game, joining the Enclave and pushing that idea to see them win, but knowing Bethesda we probably will never get a good Fallout game period, let alone a good Enclave-side option.

    And most of it's adobe huts and metal shacks. Not all, but most.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
  14. Hulk'O'Saurus

    Hulk'O'Saurus Still Mildly Glowing

    264
    Jul 10, 2018
    This is an interesting thread. I will need to read the whole of it as the replies are also good.

    Your use of Machiavellian, however, is extremely inappropriate. I think you need to change that term for something else because as it stands you're asking a question akin to: Apples - Orange or Moon?
     
  15. SquidWard

    SquidWard Pirate and Bankrobber oTO Orderite

    Jun 1, 2018
    What are these multiple reasons to believe the human race isn't evolving to meet the Wasteland? What in the wasteland has been changing that it kills them rather than makes them more suitable to survive in the new world? Other animals seem to be doing fine. They reproduce, they are stronger. God forbid the human race evolves and adapts to new environments. It's unspeakable! The horror, the horror.
    There's a quote from the man working on distributing the FEV worldwide.
    They have no idea what the ramifications of the differences might be but FUCK IT let's just kill the entire global population because the West has slightly different DNA.

    For all they know: Wastelanders aren't genetically enough for the Enclave's viewpoint of what is and isn't a homo sapien I guess? They have no evidence that I've seen that shows that the new humans are worse off besides the fact that they aren't strapped with power armor, vertibirds, an oil rig, and a lot of stolen GECKs.
     
  16. zegh8578

    zegh8578 Keeper of the trout Orderite

    Mar 11, 2012
    Isn´t that like the whole point, that the Enclave pragmatically has limited their definition of "human" to exactly their own "pure form", and that the Chosen One manages to convince a researcher that "human" extends onwards, alongside evolution? A "new type of human" is still "human", even if it´s not the same human as before. You could consider humans "going extinct" by ONLY counting within the imposed limitation, but the point is that these humans _are still giving offspring, that are strong and adapted_. Humanity - although changed - persists.
     
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  17. SquidWard

    SquidWard Pirate and Bankrobber oTO Orderite

    Jun 1, 2018
    Yes. But somehow people find a way to find the people obviously written to be nothing but evil as misunderstood good guys.

    Imagine arguing that homo erectus were the true human form and homo sapiens needed to be subjects of chemical warfare. Damn millennial sapiens and their gotdang evolving 'n' shit! Always putting meat over fire, in my day we used to just rip the meat off the antelope and eat it with our HANDS. Entitled brats.

    "Hey these guys are evil. They want to commit worldwide genocide. They want to do this to control the region formerly recognized as the United States of America. They will murder anyone who tries to stop them, they abduct humans and subject them to testing. They're practically evil as fuck and people will likely compare them to Nazis."

    "Nuh uhhh they're good guys" :ugly:
     
  18. Veers

    Veers Fire when ready.

    63
    Jan 3, 2017
    Other creatures include freakishly large scorpions and monsters that were formed by crazed scientists or freak mutation. They're hardly the same as their equivalent predecessors. The Enclave's goal isn't to evolve humanity to some post-war humanoid, it's to bring the pre-war world back. You don't do that by letting humanity advance to some kind of super mutant stage where they barely resemble what they used to be.

    No, not slightly different DNA, greatly different DNA. Humans who haven't been exposed to generations of radiation, mutation, and probably inbreeding are considerably different, genetically, than humans who have. The Enclave and the Vaults are the only known places humans could go without the same exposure.

    Wastelanders attack most mutants on sight, the Enclave attacks most mutants on sight. There's no substantial disconnect in the logic here between these concepts. If you think you've got a moral right to go sniping super mutants, the Enclave has a moral right to go sniping at you. Humans exposed to the Wasteland are mutated, that's fact.

    This is Fallout. No one is totally good, no one is totally evil. That's not exactly a novel concept, it's the basis of the entire setting.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
  19. SquidWard

    SquidWard Pirate and Bankrobber oTO Orderite

    Jun 1, 2018
    Yeah, I didn't walk into Lost Hills and start taking out the supermutants. Most decent human beings have this idea of a moral right to self defense and usually don't attack sentient beings without being provoked to do so. And when they do they're seen as reprehensible, usually. Because you know, why attack another sentient being if it isn't attacking you?

    You ever see someone in the streets and think, "Hey they're different! Why don't I just annihilate them and everything like them?" Because that seems to be this line of thinking. No one is a threat to anyone but the Enclave to the rest of the world. The Enclave are not provoked, they aren't threatened. They simply want control of this area and they're willing to do it in a fucked up way. Not even the people in the organization agree with it when they're asked to/when they finally think about it.

    Wastelanders don't shoot Lily on sight, they don't shoot Marcus on sight. Towns like Lost Hills exist. Sure there's racial tensions but that's to be expected of a sentient race that used to kidnap you and your family and dip them in experimental ooze.

    The Wastelanders weren't kidnapping and forcibly mutating Enclave citizens in the middle of the night like Supermutants did to humans in Fallout 1. So if you lived around that area and saw that shit happen, yeah I don't blame you for shooting on sight.

    Ah I missed this, sorry.
    No shit. But there's no doubting that this faction was meant to be the epitome of evil compared to most others. They are a threat to ANYONE that isn't them. The only way you can be on their side is the be their descendants.
    Not my fault that whoever fleshed out the Enclave didn't give them a more understandable or sympathetic side.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019
  20. Veers

    Veers Fire when ready.

    63
    Jan 3, 2017
    Plenty of people never asked for the NCR or the Legion to come on their land. Plenty of people never bothered them and got bothered first. You're drawing some kind of conclusion that the Enclave is completely different for trying to exert its will and control on others who would leave them alone otherwise when that's what every faction does.

    The Enclave are threatened. They come to blows with other factions before any global plan issue comes into play. Furthermore, the bigger issue isn't that the Enclave is threatened, it's that humanity is threatened. Aside from the Vaults, the Enclave is the last remnant of pre-war humanity. Post-war humanity is on the track of either mutating or going extinct, and so is the Enclave if it doesn't expand. The Enclave isn't so much trying to gain power for itself as it is trying to bring back both the old world and unmutated humanity.

    No problem.

    Being a threat to something doesn't make it evil. Feral ghouls are pretty threatened by Wastelanders with guns, and Wastelanders threatened by them. It doesn't make them evil. And the last part is what I've agreed with before. No faction is without flaws, and the Enclave has them. I like the idea of a degree of cooperation with the Wasteland, and letting others be on their side who aren't born with them or from a Vault. Autumn in 3 has this idea and I think it'd work better than trying to punch out everyone else in the Wasteland and inevitably getting overwhelmed.

    Nor is it their fault or anyone else's that you don't see their side as understandable or sympathetic.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2019