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I think you would be well advised to add political complexity, rather than science ... a few different factions are good to play off against each other: even if you have one faction that everyone hates and is against, that still leaves a few little arguments as the other factions in "alliance" jostle for position.



That's all fine and good, but that would imply that the factions are fighting over something, influence or land or resources, and Denver is a hole :* Nobody really wants to be there, and none of the factions are really after the same thing. The salvagers are NCR convicts on work release from prison, they've got nowhere else to go, finding something valuable about the dangerous ruins is the only chance they have to improve their lots elsewhere.


On the other hand, the Slavers don't want to be there either. There's nobody to enslave, nobody to sell their product to, and the terrain is dangerous. Everybody has to live high above the ground, there are so many scavenging dogs. They're only there because they have to be, as a waystation for their trade between the lands across the mountains and across the dustbowl to the Eastern US.


So the best thing to insert at this point would have to be something like a Vault. An untouched vault is a scavenger's wet dream, and any CODE stuff or perhaps some inhabitants would be a goldmine for slavers/raiders as well. Gaining control of the vault would be a golden ticket out of Denver and into the highlife, and it's the only thing that's come readily to mind that both factions would readily clash over. Throw in whoever lives in the vault who wants the city to themselves, or just want to be left alone, and you've got a nice mix of intrigue. I'm open to suggestions that don't include a vault, but it's the best option I've got right now, outside of bringing in the BoS or the Enclave or such (the NCR comes in later) but that's way out of the PC's league.

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A little late on the reply, but thanks for the ideas, Blank. Now all I have to do is implement them and figure out where to get the components, and what abilities will be required to create said items.


I'm writing Fallout again, since the semester has ended. Planned everything up for next week. Basically, the party is in Denver, which is kind of like the Necropolis, except much bigger and much less populated. A few police robots and some salvagers and a lot of dogs, that's it. There are also some slavers and some mercenaries, but at least one of those you fight.


My question posed to you all is this: Given that there aren't many NPCs to flesh out here in Denver, what would be the best way to initiate quests and such over a large area? The thing is that without any NPCs, the whole area runs the risk of being a gigantic dungeon crawl. I don't do dungeon crawls well, so I need some inspiration here.

forget dungeons, use old car factories, supermarket ruins, a heavily guarded ex-school, some severs with mutated bugs, and maybe a supercomputer (digitalized)

Well, it's Fallout, there are no dungeons. What I mean is, everything in the location is going to be either combat or fetching missions for the one or two NPC-intensive areas of the game. Last time I did a fetching quest, it was terribly boring.


Your Quest: Fetch someone who has to fetch things! :*




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Perhaps it's just a result of writing something and not implementing it in a timely manner, but all of a sudden I'm having second thoughts about that which I've set up. The whole vault / CODE thing does seem to be rather contrived, and the whole thing seems to be coming out rather Resident Evil survival horror-y (MCA mentioned a vault in his timeline that was made crazy with psychotropic drugs, which I was considering making the Denver Vault, and while I'll have to stretch to make it even halfway plausible, I think I can do it), and while that kind of gameplay has worked incredibly in the past with other games I've played, especially when put in contrast to FedEx and "save the prominent NPC" plots, I don't know how I could make it work with other, less intense parts of the game.


I mean, is it really wise to depart radically from the tone and mechanics of a game, even just for a short while? Can I make this part of the game an intense room-by-room combatfest and expect my players to bite just at hard at the "save NCR from infighting and discredit the evil caravan house at the town hall meeting" bit?


There's a less "wtf?"-intensive part of the locale that is included more or less wholly in the design docs. It involved a rival (evil) group of salvagers who were living in another part of abandoned Denver, who had infiltrated the first ("good") salvager group that the PCs are currently working for. The PCs would root out the traitors, prevent them from "opening a Pandora's Box", and save the good salvs. I was planning on somehow implementing those parts of the story later on, perhaps when the PCs return to the city later for different reasons. What I could do instead of the whole Vault deal is implement those plots immediately. The problem is, I'll have to write out that part of the game more (I have less time now) since the design docs make clear who the bad salvs are and their intentions, but it doesn't provide much of a narrative as far as how they get discovered, or dealt with.


It's a labour of love, figuring all this crap out :aiee: I've stuck with it this long, I've got to keep at it.

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I'm no expert at FO, but isn't it a very combat-unfriendly environment ... or is that just at lower levels?

You always, always start off fighting rats, as in all great RPGs. the first game had a fairly intuitive and balanced first few levels. Start off with a pistol, graduate to SMG, to shotty, to rifle, etc. etc. Fallout 2 only really worked if you killed the right guys at the beginning, and most players not familiar with the sometimes nonexistent law of Fallout will assume that killing people and taking their stuff always results in negative consequences. So it didn't work as well as far as progressive combat balance went. My first time through F2, I made it to Vault City with nothing other than what I had left Arroyo with.


What they had planned to implement in Van Buren, that I've shied away from to better help myself, was a Road Warrior-esque scarcity of actual guns and ammo. Early on I had planned on making most of the beginning part of the game crossbow-only, but... never did work for me.


But in my PnP experience, it hasn't been particularly better or worse than other PnP games as far as the quality of the combat goes. Sequences, rolling to hit, rolling damage, subtracting resistances (something I need to work on), etc. I'm eager to try this SIMPLE combat, since Josh seems to think it vastly improves on the somewhat byzantine AP system. There are a few things I'm confuzzled over, but I'll figure them out in due time.


Aside from the rival salvs / slavers / vault question, I'm also dreading that this next little excursion will mimick the last FedEx excursion we had, which is to say, I'm dreading that it will suck. But that's normal. Even the best designed CRPG scenarios can fall flat on the tabletop, and as long as I don't trip myself up, I could very well make the flimsiest few paragraphs into a riveting nightlong adventure. But you can't really do that when the game is planned out (albeit kind of loosely) in the way VB is.

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