So, I’ve taken a break from Skyrim to play Fallout 4 because they have the Special Edition of Skyrim out and there really isn’t a good platform to play it on — I mean yeah, I can play the vanilla game no problem, but what’s the fun in that? I want to mod it to the gills and make it behave the way I want it to. That’s where the fun is. Ha! But the “mod managers” that are available are… well, one is good, and it’s the one I use for Skyrim and Fallout 4, but it doesn’t play nice with Skyrim Special Edition. And the other… the less said about the other the better.
So I’ve been playing Fallout 4. And shooting virtual people in the head, because this is a thing that’s best done virtually. And, like killing dragons, it’s kind of cathartic, but unlike killing dragons, it’s also a bit of a bummer too, because I know that dragons don’t exist and neither do draugr (the walking dead of Skyrim) but bandits and raiders? Yeah, those are real-ish, and those are most of what attack my character in Fallout 4. Sure, there are Super Mutants and feral ghouls, but for the most part, it’s raiders of one type or another. I mean, I’d totally leave them alone to their raiderly life, but I can’t walk down the street in FO4 without them shooting me for no particular reason whatsoever. Which I think is so stupid. I mean that makes no sense for raiders to just attack every single person who walks by. There’d be no one left alive. You know? But hey, as my hubby says, I overthink these things way too much.
Now, FO4 has a “settlement building” aspect of the game where if you join the Minutemen faction of the game, you build settlements. Meaning, you do a quest for a family or a person, or sometimes a robot, and that entity will “join” the Minutemen and you’ll be tasked with building a settlement around whatever area that entity lives. So it’s up to you, the player to build shelter, plant crops, create defenses, set up trade posts, and entice settlers to that settlement. It’s also up to you, the player, to assign settlers to their jobs (pick the crops, defend the settlement). And in the vanilla game, the settlements will get attacked — a lot — and it doesn’t matter where you are, it’s your job to stop whatever you’re doing and go help defend the settlement or there’s a possibility that everyone will die and you’ll lose your settlement. I thought that was the stupidest idea, ever. I mean, what’s the point in setting up defenses if my player has to be the one to defend the settlement? So I downloaded a mod to stop that nonsense first thing.
I like building settlements. It gives me something to do that’s a bit of a challenge. Mine don’t turn out as well as some people, but I do okay. If you ever have a few hours to kill, go over to YouTube and watch this guy build settlements. Talk about attention to detail! O_o. Anyway, aside from building things, the game itself is… okay. It stretches my suspension of disbelief to the breaking point because, while I don’t expect realism in a game, there are some things that just baffle the mind. Like the trash everywhere. What the hell? It’s been over two hundred years since the bombs dropped and the developers of the game think that even the people living in the “big” cities are going to be living in squalor and wearing patched up clothing? Is this how they view humankind? They don’t think that after 200 years we wouldn’t have figured out how to turn the lights back on, the lumber mills? or learned how to weave cloth? The game developers have everyone living in rags and the husks of houses that haven’t fallen totally apart, or slapped together shacks. And none of the beds have sheets. It’s just gross. And it makes me sad that this is what they believe we’d be like after 200 years.
Luckily, the modding community thinks better of humankind and I have mods that replace the slapped together shacks with whole walls and mods that clean up — some — of the trash in the streets. Some of it is there for a reason, and I get that. The game programs need to keep both the player and NPC’s from walking where they don’t belong. Got it. But if they expect me to believe that things like eggs cartons, papers, and who knows what else have been sitting in a trash heaps undamaged all over the place for 200 years, they’ve got another think coming. I have a mod that changes all of that stuff to wood and dirt. Much more believable.
But the one thing I really hate about FO4 is the female animations. Watch the video below (warning: someone’s head explodes… because that’s what they do in this game) and note how the women stand and talk. Almost all women stand this way, even the kids – which is kinda creepy actually. And if they’re not standing like that, they’re standing like the picture to the right. And it doesn’t matter who they are or what they’re saying to you. One character was explaining how a scientific object worked but she still looked as though she were saying, “Is there something I can do for you?” It’s disconcerting. According to my Steam account (which is where you play the game from), I’ve played just under 200 hours of this game, and I have yet to meet a named female NPC that didn’t stand and talk like she was some kind of vamp or as though she’d just given up on life altogether — or switch between the two within the same conversation. It’s annoying as hell to me. No, there is another “emotion” for females – anger. There are a few angry females out there too, but as soon as they’re done being angry they go back to vamp/slouch. The men get to be, you know… normal. Maybe the developers think all women stand like these women do? I dunno, but I find it grating. It’s not grating enough to make me stop playing, but as soon as someone makes a mod to change that, I’m so downloading it.
Note as well, all of the trash in this dude’s office (under the desk). This is the flipping mayor of the biggest city in the Commonwealth! You’d think that they’d have enough decency to clean up the freakin’ trash.
But as much as I bitch about the little things, it’s still an interesting game to play. Lots of things to discover, lots of things to build, and of course, I mod the hell out of it so I can make many of the little things just… disappear. Ha! Because that’s what modding is for. Eventually, when my brain clears up a bit, I’ll break open the Creation Kit and learn how to make my own mods, but until then, I’ll rely on the kindness of others.
In other news, today I get to fast all day — nothing but liquids. Fun!