Saturday, June 25, 2011

Fun stuffed

Who knew?  Teddy bears are lethal.  (So far as I know, only in Fallout 3.)  You fire them out of the Rock-It Launcher.

There's a Sewer Waystation near Grayditch with a pair of conveyor belts filled with teddy bears — by my count 21 of them, but I may have missed a couple (or other stuff.)

I took them up to Mothership Zeta and dropped all 21 bears in the bridge nook for Sally, but they all merged into one or two bears for some reason.  There's a clean, secluded space in front of the Captain's chair, down a short flight of stairs on port or starboard.


Tuesday, June 21, 2011

I Ching versing Fallout 3

Fig. 1- Toy angles and hard edges, just like Troy.
Ok, a hypothetical.  In the heat of battle, you've just taken out your own follower with friendly fire.  Dismayed, downcast and distraught by the surprise, pain and accusations of betrayal in your companion's eyes,  you find a pre-war copy of the I Ching (Wilhelm translation).  Seeking solace you read, "Dense clouds, no rain from our western region.  No praise, no blame."

Neutral karma?  Hey, great!  Off the hook.  One tenth scale damnation is so cool...

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Saturday, June 18, 2011

Anchorage, you say?

Fig. 1 - Ubiquitous hula girls
Ummm... ok.  I convinced General Jingwei to commit seppuku (are Chinese Communist generals allowed to do that?  I thought they got "re-educated."  Seems to be a bit of cultural mashup there.)  So that was easier than I thought.  If that scenery is "Anchorage, Alaska," though, then Sarah Palin is a mutant space alien exiled to Earth for crimes against thing-kind.

What else?  When "Operation Anchorage," which is unexplained, by and large, concludes, there is a bit of mutiny among the disaffected.  It's hard to keep the two good guys alive if the firefight gets too heated.  Put yourself between the combatants before it starts, and shoot first.  Use the Lincoln Repeater.  If your other skills and perks support it, that thing makes you a murder machine.  Look to your armor first, right?  You're still wearing the Neural Interface suit.

If you revisit the Outcast Outpost, you may find yourself stuck in the elevator, which will not respond to up or down button, and the steel doors won't open.  However, it's not a freeze or normal glitch, because you can turn yourself around, look up and down, and zoom on the locked door.  What is going on?  It's probably a glitch, yes.  But you may have just gotten yourself in an inconvenient place during a super mutant attack on the outpost.   If my conjecture is correct, the doors should open when the A.I.'s finish their battle outside.

Also, finally disarmed that big bomb in the middle of Megaton, and got my own house (and a few interior decoration options) from Moira Brown, the naive shopgirl at Craterside Supply.

Yes, I'm aware there's a real world out there.  The only one that counts is my family.  Politics, economics, elections....  Eh.  I vote.  I'm retired, I'm 67, and I much prefer the obvious acerbic fantasies of Fallout 3, bugs and all.


Saturday, June 11, 2011

Two Weeks Later?!

Button Gwinett, NPC
(note the white powdered wig!)

Considering all the extant glitches, lockups, temporary freezes, tone deaf "nice" dialogues with children and the "freedom" to play Fallout 3 any grotesque way you feel like (and apparently some of you FEV failjobs feel like Jack the Ripper or Jeffrey Daumer) — considering all that — it should not have surprised me when the sophomoric ending came and everybody died except the narrator and his or her sophistries. The game can be amateurish, at times.

It ends. Like that. Pitched battle, impending disaster in the water purifier, rushing in where angels LOL at the stupid storyline, saving the world. But deader than Spock from radiation. Flash to white. Interminable sepia-toned testimonial to follow.

So there you are, dead, without so much as a so-what left in this game. Shouldn't we have ignored the main quest for another hundred hours or so?

Not to worry, children. If you bought the Game of the Year edition, you have four or five ways to continue the action. In fact, one of the them is automatic. After the sepia junknotes, before the credits roll, you regain consciousness "two weeks later."

My sarcasm level topped out at 110 (off the scale) on this level, but  then I found the hilarious Button Gwinett, so it won't be awhile before I reenter the simulator...!  The one NPC, absurdly, in the whole game who can understand and relive American history from memory.  Unlike Abraham Washington, who's got it all ludricrously wrong, a bit like Sarah Palin.


Sunday, June 05, 2011

Framed. On my wall.

Fallout 3 Game of the Year edition contains a number of additional quests intended, I presume, for players who have played through the mainline game, gotten the bends and require time in a decompression chamber. I took a run through the Lookout Point, discovered quickly that our Chinese espionage agent is in the Turtledove Detention Facility, and that Desmond's tribal enemies are way too tough for a lowly level 9.5 player like Y.T. Later, then.

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Friday, June 03, 2011


There's a good yeoman jewelry repair and cleaning guy with 30 years' experience here in Cedar Rapids (Iowa). His name is Randall Patterson, phone (319) 366-6611. His work is guaranteed and modestly priced.  He fixed a broken clasp on my wife's fine gold chain; brought in on Memorial Day, picked up this morning. Randall's old shop downtown was sunk during the great Cedar River flood of 2008, so he works at home.  Call ahead.

I'd add him to Craigslist, but frankly the details of that hypermundane task are more time than I'm willing to invest.


Wednesday, June 01, 2011

You know you've done it...

These are some Fallout 3 sure things.   You know you've done them.

In Megaton, you paid the princely sum of 120 bottle caps for "that" room in Moriarty's, you slept in the big bed, and 48 hours later you looked for the "How was it for you?" button.  The "action" on screen was awfully mundane.  Like it didn't even happen.... Maybe it was all in your mind?

You got the Hamilton's Hideaway weapons cache key from Three Dog and went there expecting cake.  You got radscorpions up the wazoo instead, but by dint of many saves and a lot of strategizing around the problems, you discover the raiders are dead and one of them has a combat shotgun she won't be using any more.  Works just fine on radscorpions if you keep your head (and catch a bit of luck).  When you finally find the weapons cache, it seems kind of paltry, but you get a mini-nuke!  So you take the goodies to Flak and Shrapnel's down in Rivet City, where you sell enough stuff to buy a Fat Man.  You travel fast to Anacostia Crossing, where you notice with deep satisfaction the group of three young Talon Mercs standing too close together.  With a heart of ice, you launch the Mini-Nuke and wonder where you can find another one for free?

Later, travelling West from Megaton, you notice the same four (or is it five?) Raiders camping in the gully just beyond the billboard.  You sneak up and launch a missile into the group, taking them all out again.  With a fine tactical regard for the possible, it occurs to you to wonder if a single missile would have taken out the Talon Mercs at Anacostia Crossing.  Too late....

You found Vault 112, but your Science and Lockpick skills are too low to save Dad.  You wonder how to raise your Intelligence. Maybe read a book?

By the time you've cleaned out the Evergreen Mills Bazaar, found Madame's Key and finally met Smiling Jack, you want to use your combat shotgun on his head.  The guy is rude, but he sells stuff.  I'm not sure offing him is bad karma, but his label is green, not red.