Gamasutra: The Art & Business of Making Gamesspacer
View All     RSS
October 24, 2014
arrowPress Releases
October 24, 2014
PR Newswire
View All
View All     Submit Event

If you enjoy reading this site, you might also want to check out these UBM Tech sites:

Fallout 3 is the worst game of all time
by Eric Schwarz on 03/31/13 05:00:00 pm   Expert Blogs

The following blog post, unless otherwise noted, was written by a member of Gamasutra’s community.
The thoughts and opinions expressed are those of the writer and not Gamasutra or its parent company.


So I was reading a particularly great Fallout 3 Lets Play recently and noticed some especially obvious plot holes.  Although I have previously decimated the game's story and writing (I use those terms loosely), upon reading this LP I noticed even more problems than I ever had before.  I decided to write them up into a fun, easy-to-read synopsis.  And by that I mean a ridiculously long-winded rant.

The main quest basically has the following path:

  1. Escape Vault 101
  2. Head to Megaton
  3. Learn father has gone to GNR
  4. Go to GNR
  5. Solve GNR's problems with the satellite dish
  6. Learn father went to Rivet City
  7. Go to Rivet City
  8. Talk to Dr. Li to learn father went to Jefferson memorial
  9. Go to Jefferson Memorial
  10. Father isn't there, find note that tells you to go to Vault 112
  11. Go to Vault 112
  12. Go into Tranquility Lane, rescue father
  13. Talk to father, who says we need a GECK to make Project Purity work
  14. Go to Project Purity (Jefferson Memorial)
  15. Kill the Super Mutants there
  16. Do odd jobs for father
  17. After odd jobs, Enclave invades
  18. Kill the Enclave soldiers, father kills himself and sabotages Project Purity
  19. Find Dr. Li and go to Brotherhood of Steel HQ
  20. Brotherhood of Steel guys tell us where to find a GECK, Vault 87
  21. Go to Little Lamplight
  22. Solve Little Lamplight's slaver problems
  23. Go to Vault 87 and rescue Fawkes, find GECK
  24. Get kidnapped by the Enclave
  25. Talk to various people in the Enclave
  26. Escape the Enclave
  27. Go to Brotherhood of Steel HQ
  28. Talk to Elder Lyons and activate Liberty Prime
  29. Stage assault on Project Purity
  30. Destroy Enclave and sacrifice self or Sentinel Lyons to activate the purifier

Now, aside from the constant "your princess is in another castle" stuff, there are quite a few issues that present themselves as you go through the game.  I'd like to discuss just a few of them.

  1. Why does father go to GNR to talk to Three Dog? What could a scientist possibly want with some stupid radio jockey? Was there absolutely any reason? It's not really on the way to the Jefferson Memorial or Rivet City, so were they just old friends and he wanted to catch up with the guy? And that was important enough to put his amazing incredible project on hold? Or did he know that GNR's dish was broken and that if he stopped by, his son would eventually follow and fix it for Three Dog instead of him? What the heck?
  2. Father went to Jefferson Memorial and recorded all those audio logs of him talking to himself. Why? Was he bored and lonely? Did he hope someone would find them and hunt him down? If so why didn't he just leave a note, instead of his long-winded ramblings that nobody else wants to hear?
  3. How did he get into Jefferson Memorial even though it's infested with Super Mutants and hostile auto turrets? I thought father wasn't "much of a fighter" in his words? Did he sneak in? If that's the case why didn't he sneak in later in the game? Wait, so did the Super Mutants know he was there? Were they sent to kill him but arrive too late? Or were they always there? When the Super Mutants learned nobody was there, why didn't they leave? We see they seem to live off of eating human flesh, so if there was no food then why did they bother to fortify and inhabit the place? I'm so foncused.
  4. So it's implied heavily by the dialogue that Dr. Braun, the guy who is controlling Tranquility Lane at Vault 112, is responsible for creating the GECK. Yet there is no lab in Vault 112, no GECK, no nothing. He doesn't talk about it at all. Was he working on the GECK before the war broke out, but rather than taking the GECK for himself (an amazing piece of technology), he ignored it to become king of a VR simulation? Why? Why didn't he use this amazing technology he built to become king of the real world instead? Does he have ADD?
  5. So basically the GECK was retconned into being a magic world-creating device that atomizes everything in a radius to create new life. Okay. Uh, so, uh, why isn't there like, a countdown timer on the GECK? Why does the person who uses it immediately die? Wouldn't that be extremely impractical? Can it be remote-activated?  Why don't we just do that? Do you use a robot or something? What if you like, drop it, does it go off? Whoops, everyone's dead! Wait, if the GECK creates life from nothingness and kills everything around it when activated, couldn't we just wait for the Enclave to use it and kill themselves?  Like a big atom bomb inside a gift-wrapped box?  Why are we trying to get this thing exactly?  Wait, how does a miracle device like this even help us purify water even though it specifically kills everyone and creates new life?
  6. Anyway, so the GECK was created by Dr. Braun, but he doesn't have one, because... no reason. Instead the GECKs were sent out to various Vaults around the country, even though they were very dangerous and probably should have been entrusted to the military or US government and not just random people. The only GECK on the East Coast, apparently, exists in Vault 87, which is an evil cloning lab... thingy for Super Mutants. Who is creating them there? Nobody. Why are they being created? No reason. But more importantly, why would you put the GECK, aka the goddamn GENESIS DEVICE out of Star Trek III, into a Vault that was centered around doing cloning and sick twisted experiments, and which is so heavily irradiated that anyone but mutants are instantly killed when trying to enter? You're telling me that the GECK is a miracle device designed to save everyone, and someone said "hmm, we've only got a few... put it in Vault 101, the control vault where nothing will go wrong? nah, let's put it in the one with insane hostile deadly mutants and radiation everywhere, that's much safer."
  7. Speaking of, let's go locate the GECK. We need to use the computer at the Jefferson Memorial. So let's go! Wait, I thought the scientists wanted to go to the Jefferson Memorial to restart Project Purity? So which is it? Both? Did father lie to us? And when we arrive at Project Purity, instead of father telling us to use a computer and find the GECK, he gets us to do odd jobs for him.  So I guess he is a liar.  Why am I helping this doofus again?  No, "voiced by Liam Neeson" does not make him a good character or mean that I care about him at all.  Whatever. The Enclave invades and father kills himself for his stupid project so we can't learn anything.
  8. Well, now we're screwed, so what now? Oh, let's escape the Enclave invasion and visit the Brotherhood of Steel! Turns out that they have a computer that tells us where the GECK is instead. So basically, instead of going to the dangerous Jefferson Memorial and committing suicide, we could have gone to the big fortified Brotherhood of Steel base and just asked them for help instead.  Well, I guess that would have been good to know in advance.  Why am I playing this game?
  9. Wait, come to think of it, couldn't we just have gone back to the Jefferson Memorial and killed all the Enclave soldiers? I mean, we already had to mow down several of them in order to reach the Project Purity control room to witness father killing himself. Why don't we just, like, kill the rest of them, make our stand there? If we can kill a few with no trouble, why can't we kill a few more? Why are we leaving? Why are we giving them time to reinforce and fortify the location? Can't we send one person as an envoy to the Brotherhood of Steel while the rest of us hunker down and keep the bad guys out? At the end of the game we have to use a big giant robot to get past the Enclave defenses, which are only set up because we waited too long to kick them out. I guess all those Brotherhood of Steel soldiers who helped us fight to get to Project Purity again died for nothing/because we were all idiots.
  10. In Vault 87, we retrieve the GECK with the help of Fawkes. Yay! But then the Enclave knock us out with a magic stun grenade that does not exist anywhere else in the game, and they kidnap us and steal the GECK. Boo! After this, we never see or hear of the GECK ever again. How does the Enclave use the GECK to activate Project Purity? No idea. How did they know how to use it to save Project Purity? No idea. Did Anna Holt tell them, as she admits to blabbing about Project Purity? Maybe, but why would an understudy/lab assistant know a) exactly how Project Purity works, even though she looks too young to have ever worked on it (and I'm pretty sure her backstory says she never did work on it, only with Dr. Li at Rivet City), and b) how would she know how to use this ancient piece of miracle technology to work with another piece of brand-new miracle technology that she shouldn't understand to begin with? Did anyone at Bethesda proofread this or think more than 1 second about it?
  11. In the Enclave base at Raven Rock, Colonel Autumn interrogates us.  If we give him the correct code to Project Purity, we die and lose the game, so we have to lie to him or tell him to piss off.  Why does he kill us after helping him?  Is he so stupid he concludes that we are no use to him after he got the answer to one question, even though we single-handedly found the GECK, resisted an Enclave attack on the Jefferson Memorial, and did all sorts of other impressive stuff?  Apparently, yes, he is that stupid.
  12. Fortunately President Eden intervenes and asks us to come speak with him personally.  Why?  No real reason, except so that we can find out he's actually a computer, which is the most obvious plot twist ever.  Wait, if the Enclave are all "humanity first" then why did they assign a computer to be their President?  And didn't anyone notice that their President apparently lived for like 200 years?  Ah screw it.
  13. While going to visit Eden, Autumn overrides his orders and tells all the Enclave soldiers to attack us.  Why would the Enclave soldiers disregard a direct order from their President, who is also Commander In Chief of their military, for what a simple Colonel says?  Wait, so is Autumn like second in command of the Enclave?  Pretty sure there are more military ranks above Colonel before you get to Commander In Chief.  Does Bethesda not understand how US military ranking works?  Did they not just look it up on Wikipedia before hand?  Or did they just think Colonel sounded cool and didn't bother changing it to something that made sense?  Are Bethesda actually game design and writing geniuses?!  I'll let you decide!
  14. When we get to Eden, we find out he is a computer (shock!).  He tells us that with one simple change, the injection of a strain of FEV into the water filters, Project Purity could be modified to kill all mutated life in the Wasteland.  This includes all people, all animals, and probably a good portion of the Enclave too.  Let's think about this for just one second.  What would killing everyone in the Wasteland accomplish?  Isn't this an inefficient plan?  Wouldn't everyone shortly realize the water from the big Enclave purifier was not safe to drink, and would just drink other water, like rainwater or toilet water?  It'd be radioactive, but at least it wouldn't kill them.  Everyone seems to be surviving no problem right now with regular radioactive water anyway, they just need anti-radiation drums/brahmin milk.  Wait, why do people drink water when they can just drink brahmin milk, which Moira Brown specifically says can cure radiation sickness?  Wait, did you say FEV?  Like, the stuff that makes Super Mutants?  Why would FEV kill mutants?  Wouldn't it just mutate everyone even more?  Wait, if you were going to make anti-radiation death syrum , why would you start with FEV, aka the stuff that creates mutants in the first place?
  15. Anyway, it seems like right now Autumn actually has the right idea in staging a coup to overthrow Eden, because Eden is an idiot.  This is proven by the fact that it's possible to convince him he is an idiot and that he should die simply by giving him Bambi eyes.  Of course, we can never side with him, because the game has designated the new bad guy, whereas Eden, the President of the United States and a supercomputer, is just a miniboss exposition info dump.  Why did Bethesda make the President the miniboss, and the dude that is far outranked by the President, Colonel Autumn, the real bad guy?
  16. So now we escape the Enclave base (and meet up with Fawkes on the way, who joins us), which is set to auto destruct.  Why is it set to auto destruct?  Why would you destroy this incredible repository of technology and science, and kill all these people?  How is this in any way productive or useful?  Can't we just not blow up the base, and reap all its benefits to advance humanity into a new golden age?  I'll bet all this stuff the Enclave has could be used to solve all sorts of problems.  Hunger, disease, hostile mutants... oh right, explosions are cool, forgot.
  17. When we get out of the Enclave base and return to the Brotherhood of Steel, we learn that Project Purity is seized by the Enclave and that we have to stop them before they press a big red button to turn it on and get clean water for everyone.  Remember, Autumn thought that Eden's plan was stupid and just wants to activate the Purifier to get clean water going.  First of all, let's ignore the fact that this would all be unnecessary if we had just fought back against the Enclave and fortified the Jefferson Memorial earlier.  Autumn is a bad guy because the game says he is a bad guy, but all he wants to do is give clean water to everyone in the Wasteland.  Furthermore, unless we were morons, we turned down Eden's offer, so wouldn't that make us a friend of Autumn, because we both want the same thing for everyone?  Why can't we team up with him and help him out?  He should have figured out by now, after we single-handedly destroyed the entire Enclave base, that we're bad business.  And with a Brotherhood army supporting us, why is he even trying anymore?
  18. The Brotherhood of Steel convince us that the Enclave must be stopped before they activate Project Purity.  Why?  So the Enclave want to press a button to give everyone clean water, which will instantly cause some sort of problem for everyone in the wasteland?  Or do the Brotherhood of Steel just want to be the ones to press the button instead?  Why do we have to go fight the Enclave now?  Wait, why are the Brotherhood of Steel considered the good guys anyway?  All they did was tell us where Vault 87 was and have done absolutely nothing for the people of the wasteland.  Meanwhile all the Enclave did was try to get Project Purity back online.  Sure, they used a little force to persuade us to help, but maybe they had no other choice given their circumstances.  Why can't I join with them again?  Is it because they have evil-looking helmets?  That means they're bad guys, I guess.  Grr, we're gonna get you, rawr!  Is this a Scooby Doo cartoon?
  19. To fight the Enclave and break through the force fields they erected on the road to the Jefferson Memorial in the time we were wasting, the Brotherhood of Steel activate a massive old abandoned US military robot called Liberty Prime, which looks like it's out of an old Transformers cartoon.  Where did this robot come from?  Where did they find it?  Was it already in the Pentagon when they set up their headquarters there, or did they drag it there piece by piece?  Why would anyone make such a colossally pointless robot when they could just make a bunch of tanks for far less money and effort?  Liberty Prime has a whole bunch of patriotic jingoistic propaganda quotes that he constantly spouts, so are you sure this isn't just some big pro-US military promotional device?  And not an armored weapons platform?  Which you apparently can't even control properly because it has its own AI?  Wait, if the Enclave are the remnants of the US government and Liberty Prime was made by the US government, then why does Liberty Prime fight the Enclave with us?  Shouldn't he instantly start killing all the Brotherhood of Steel soldiers and trashing their base?  Oh right, he's our friend because just because, stop asking questions damn it.
  20. So we go to Project Purity, kill Autumn, and then in order to activate it, we have to sacrifice ourselves, Sentinel Lyons, or tell Fawkes to do it because he's immune to radiation.  Oh wait, we can't tell Fawkes to do it unless we paid 10 dollars, my bad.  So uh, exactly why do we have to activate Project Purity now if the chamber is irradiated?  Can't we repair the damage from the outside and just wait for it to become safe again?  Wait, why is the chamber radioactive?  I thought the point of Project Purity was to purify radiation from water, why is it leaking radiation out?  Does it have some sort of big tank where it stores radiation, and it has a hole in it?  Why would this hole vent directly into the control room of all places, but nowhere else?  Did idiots design this device?  Wait, so we have enough time to type in the code to activate Project Purity (several seconds at least), but there was far more radiation in Vault 87's GECK room.  Why can't we just use RadAway on this radiation like we could in Vault 87?  Is this some kind of special radiation that isn't affected by RadAway?  Like, microwaves or something?  Why would the Project Purity control room be a giant microwave oven?  Wait, so even if we sacrifice ourselves to re-activate Project Purity, wouldn't it be kind of pointless to do so if we can't ever access the control room ever again without sacrificing another person?  That seems pretty stupid.  Wait, so the control room actually keeps the radiation inside from seeping outside.  That means that someone must have built the control room to stop radiation from leaking out somehow.  So did they know that radiation could leak inside the control room and kill everyone inside?  Why did they come up with such an idiotic design?  Hold on, wait.  Why is there no failsafe?  Are you telling me that these people made Project Purity dangerously radioactive, and never built a backup mechanism to shut it down in the clearly foreseen event that it would fail and release deadly radiation upon everyone inside the control room?


Related Jobs

Magic Leap, Inc.
Magic Leap, Inc. — Wellington, New Zealand

Level Designer
DeNA Studios Canada
DeNA Studios Canada — Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

Analytical Game Designer
University of Texas at Dallas
University of Texas at Dallas — Richardson, Texas, United States

Assistant/Associate Prof of Game Studies
Avalanche Studios
Avalanche Studios — New York, New York, United States

UI Artist/Designer


Charles Geringer
profile image
I agree with most of your points. However regarding your point 4

"So it's implied heavily by the dialogue that Dr. Braun, the guy who is controlling Tranquility Lane at Vault 112, is responsible for creating the GECK. Yet there is no lab in Vault 112, no GECK, no nothing. He doesn't talk about it at all. Was he working on the GECK before the war broke out, but rather than taking the GECK for himself (an amazing piece of technology), he ignored it to become king of a VR simulation? Why? Why didn't he use this amazing technology he built to become king of the real world instead? Does he have ADD?"

I think it was well explained that the GECK creation was interesting for the doctor because he had a deep desire to play god and the GECK Allowed him to literally reshape the world according to how he wanted it to be, but eventually he realized that with virtual reality he could have greater control than anything he could achieve in the real world.

Going from GECK to VR actually seemed like a fairly natural progression when viewed trough the lens of a man who wanted to be omnipotent.

Eric Schwarz
profile image
To be honest that one point is more my nitpicking, but it still doesn't really make much sense that he doesn't seem to talk about it, that you can't ask him about it, that you can't return to Vault 112 for more information, and so on. This guy seems to know what's up and the player should be able to get as much out of him as possible - using force like shutting down his simulation if necessary.

Of course, you can't do this in the game because it's wasn't the very first thing the developers though of and thus it was never implemented (just like pretty much every other plot thread in the game, main story and side quests included).

Daniil Golubev
profile image
I've talked to people who claimed that Fallout3 has good story. For the most part, people don't finish the main quest. What people are actually excited about is the openness and reactivity, exploring all the different side quests (which makes the world feel more alive than it logically should be) very strong emergent properties (compared to their previous games and even Skyrim) and a lot of environmental storytelling. So I guess people are just using the terms 'story' and 'writing' very loosely.

Sinjh Aurib
profile image
I just kinda figured that once we got into the VR simulator, we never left. The game makes sense in that regard. Especially since absolutely nothing that happens in Fallout 3 is given even passing mention in New Vegas, despite stuff in fallout 1 and 2 being mentioned in fallout 3.

Andreas Ahlborn
profile image
While your "rant" was (as always with your articles) fun to read, I must assume you are kidding.

This article is basically an upgrade to your "Don`t waste my time"-text.
The ridiculous tasks and absurd logic most RPGs, and i am tempted to extrapolate "all RPGs" follow are a "genetic" tradition of the genre that lies so close to the core of it, that I doubt you could get rid of it without inventing it new from scratch.

There are some rules to set up artificial tension that are ridiculous if you think it through: instead of hiding treasures, they are always openly placed in front of players in chests that you can easily open, with lockpicks/keys that happen to lie around closely in the environment. Towering enemies like dragons and giant knights vanish the moment you beat them into thin air, if you revisit areas often chests you emptied are magically filled again, enemies you already killed, spawn again, rooms/castles are always set up like drugstores in a pseudo labyrinthic way that requires you to pass every pisspot to proceed to the checkout.

For along time (5 years) I stayed away from most RPG, especially if they had a fantasy setting, because -honestly- if you await "George R.Martin" -deep characters and story arcs you will be in for a deep frustration, the sheer mass of information that must be made experiencable to the player somehow, the grind every RPG insists on until you can enjoy the endgame, is simply not worth your time, if you came for the story.

So I´ll guarantee you if you find 20 major flaws in Fallout 3`s story, I`ll find 21 in Deus Ex:HR and 22 in SKYRIM and...

I simply lack the space on this comment to spell them out ;-)

Eric Schwarz
profile image
When I say Fallout 3 is the worst game of all time, I'm basically joking. There are far worse games out there. Though, on my personal list, it's probably one of the top three games I dislike above all others.

Regarding discussion of plot holes? No, that's entirely straight-faced. We're not talking nitpicking, we're talking basic logic of characters and plot events, consistency of setting, etc. This is the kind of thing that even the most basic story should get. Fallout 3 is a farce because it's impossible to take anything in it seriously because the writers continually violate the contract they've established with the audience, whether that's defying rules of the setting, creating characters with contradictory motives, or not being able to maintain a modicum of consistent tone.

Michael O'Hair
profile image
- Fallout 3
- Far Cry 2
- Braid
- Grand Theft Auto IV
- Metal Gear Solid 4

Metal Gear Solid 4?
... perhaps it's better not to get into how those games play.
Interesting subject matter is not all there is to writing.

Foxi Shandris
profile image
Sounds like someone didn't brush up on their Fallout lore.

To fully understand everything in the Fallout universe, you can't just jump into one game and expect to learn everything. You have to play all of the games or read every official post online if you want to learn the ins and outs.

Let me explain why most of your posts are wrong:

1: "Why does Dad go to Three Dog?"

If you listened to the GNR station, you'd learn that James (your father in the game) went to GNR after he learned that Three Dog has an information network across the entire Capital Wasteland, which he then shares with the rest of the Wasteland to keep them updated on current events. Three Dog explicitly states "Now, this cat, James is his name, had been in a hole for years! He needed to know what was what out here in the beautiful Capital Wasteland! So I, the great and powerful Three Dog, set my brother straight. I told him what was what. Who are the winners, the losers, the movers and shakers."

Did you read all of that? Your father had been in Vault 101 for YEARS. Approximately 19 years, to be exact. A LOT can happen and change in 19 years, so your father, being the brilliant scientist that he is, decided that, before he made any other moves, he needed to learn what the Wasteland was like, now.

2: "Why did Dad record all those messages to himself?"

Aside from the fact that it's the same place where he lost his wife, which causes him to be depressed, he IS alone. His wife is dead, he thinks his child is still in the Vault (which he knows is a harsh place to live, especially with the current Overseer), and his old team won't work with him because they've given up. Project Purity is more than just bringing clean water to the Wasteland, for James; it's not letting his wife down. Project Purity was her life and dream, and if he were to abandon it, it would be the greatest insult to her.

3: "How did Dad get into the Jefferson Memorial without being caught?"

You're right on this part. Bethesda DOES have some poor points in their storylines, but that's almost always for the sake of gameplay. If you blew through the main questline to this point, you haven't fought much. Adding some mandatory mobs was necessary.

4: "Why didn't Dr. Braun use the G.E.C.K. himself, and why isn't there one in Vault 112?"

Dr. Braun, creator of the G.E.C.K., was sick of basic human nature. He chose to become king of a VR Simulation because he can control every aspect of it. Humans too violent? He makes them pacifistic. Humans too cheery? He dulls them down a bit. After 200 years of this, Dr. Braun snaps and becomes the devil of his own VR Simulation. He gets bored being good, or maybe he was never any good to begin with. In the real world, you have responsibilities and laws and consequences. As the administrator of a VR Simulator, you have nothing to lose, and everything to gain.

There isn't a G.E.C.K. in Vault 112 because Vault 112 was never supposed to let the occupants leave. They were meant to stay indefinitely and to be monitored by Vault 0 for data and testing purposes, like nearly every other vault.

5: "Why do I not know what the G.E.C.K. really is or how to properly use it?"

The Garden of Eden Creation Kit is a terraforming kit that, once activated, immediately converts all organic material within a certain radius (depending on the module's settings) into suitable and fertile farmland. The G.E.C.K. is stocked with seeds, a mini cold fusion reactor, and an entire library of holographic data to help a new civilization grow.

You die if activating the G.E.C.K. because that's how it was designed. The G.E.C.K. was produced with little testing and little planning, as the government was spending more money on weapons to win the war, rather than keep mankind alive. They had to settle for the bare minimum.

James didn't use the entire G.E.C.K. to purify the water. Although we don't know exactly how he did it, the fanbase generally agrees that he salvaged the parts that weren't ruined by radiation (prevalent in and around Vault 87) to build a new purifying module that wouldn't terraform everything the instant he turned it on.

6: "Why did Vault 87 get a G.E.C.K., and Vault 101 didn't?"

Vault 101 was never designed to be opened again. Vault 101's mission was to monitor the genetic degradation of inbreeding in order to sustain the Vault's population. Giving them a G.E.C.K. would be utterly pointless.

Vault 87, on the other hand, was MEANT to reopen. Before the Great War, the FEV (Forced Evolutionary Virus) was still in its infant stages of development. Vault 87 was chock full of scientists and human test subjects who were determined to force humanity into the next stage of evolution, where they would be stronger, more durable, immune to the radiation that would undoubtedly coat the Earth, and would be perhaps smarter. But, they never perfected the FEV before the bombs fell, and the task was left to those handful of scientists in Vault 87.

The FEV failed, or was never refined enough by the time the test subjects had become what we know as super mutants: stronger, more durable, and more violent than humans. The FEV gave them all the benefits of evolving except for intelligence, and it made them sterile. They quickly overwhelmed the weaker normal humans and made them into mutants, as well, either out of revenge or necessity. Once it became known that there could only be more mutants by exposing human to the FEV, they opened the vault and started abducting people.

The vault wasn't cloning, and it's full of radiation because the mutants damaged damned near everything in their rampages, either compromising internal facilities, or putting a hole straight through to the irradiated outside world.

And I've already explained why Braun doesn't have a G.E.C.K.

7: "We need a G.E.C.K! Why don't we just drop everything and go get it, if we need it so badly?"

The computer you need to use to locate the G.E.C.K. is in the Pentagon, NOT Jefferson Memorial. That blunder is all on you. Additionally, you don't go get the G.E.C.K. yet because you don't need it, yet. You need to help get Project Purity repaired so that it can properly receive the G.E.C.K. You'd only be a target if you had it, or putting people in danger to retrieve it.

8: "Why the heck didn't we go to the Brotherhood of Steel before?"

Well, besides the fact that they wouldn't have helped you, anyway (Remember Dr. Li's conversation with the gate guard? "I'm sorry, ma'am: No unauthorized civilians allowed inside the Citadel."), you couldn't have known that they had a Vault-Tech data listing of all the Vaults in the D.C. area. You couldn't have known, because you've never been inside, before.

The Brotherhood of Steel wouldn't have helped because they wouldn't have believed that Project Purity was working (remember Lyon's conversation with Dr. Li? "Come now, you know as well as I do that the purifier doesn't work. It's useless to them.").

9: "Why don't we just storm Project Purity with our outdated and antiquated technology against a vastly technologically superior and numerous enemy?"

One, because the Brotherhood of Steel doesn't have many men to begin with. This is one of the reasons they wouldn't help with Project Purity. If you talked with Three Dog, he'd tell you: "These Brotherhood of Steel guys are nice, but this is all they can spare. I need people who can go out do things.". Meanwhile, the Enclave had a large population to begin with and, through strict breeding procedures (that you'd learn about in the other games), they're able to keep their population stable to maintain their food supplies.

Two, because their equipment is heavily used (and power armor and laser rifle replacement parts don't exactly grow on trees), while the Enclave has been expanding, upgrading, and repairing their armory for two hundred years.

Three, because Lyons doesn't believe it's worth it. Like I said before, Lyons believes that the Enclave doesn't have the resources to properly activate the purifier. Even though Dr. Li tells him it needs a G.E.C.K., Lyon's doesn't think the Enclave know this, let alone have a G.E.C.K. to use.

10: "How come the Enclave get access to advanced weaponry that I've never seen, and how do they know that a G.E.C.K. is needed?"

One word: Brains.

The Enclave has the time (two hundred years, to be exact) and the resources to expand their armory, and because it's Enclave, you'd never see it until they used it. The scientists and engineers that designed those advanced weapons and armors are most likely the same ones brought to Project Purity to see what it needed to work. Rather than spending more years creating an alternative starter, they took one look and said "Well, if we had some parts from a G.E.C.K., and a few hours, we could get it working in no time! You guys want to go build cross-country teleporters, later?"

Ann Holt could most likely know that a G.E.C.K. was needed because she's a god damned scientist (one who helped purify and create fresh food, as evident by the fresh food in the Rivet City science lab). There are three ages in Fallout (child, middle aged adult, and elderly), due to game limitations and designers not caring enough to create several hundred models for one-year-difference models. She could be anywhere from 19 to 40, for all you know.

11: "Why does Colonel Autumn kill us if we give him the code to the purifier?"

Like the man says it himself: "Now we're just cleaning up loose ends."

The man prompted your father to kill himself in order to save you and keep the Enclave from gaining control of the purifier. It would be surprising if a real person DIDN'T blame Colonel Autumn/the Enclave for their father's death. He's simply making sure that the person who braved the Wastes fresh out a Vault, stormed through an army of super mutants and Enclave, doesn't come back to kill him. And you call HIM an idiot...

12: "President Eden is a computer! How obvious; why doesn't the rest of the Enclave know?"

A computer was likely "elected" President because it had more knowledge of commanding large forces (on account of it being a freaking computer with access to the entire worlds history) effectively than any of the current Enclave personnel. The rest of the Enclave doesn't know or care because they get their orders from their commanding officers. Everyone in the Enclave is either a soldier or a scientist. Additionally, Colonel Autumn is the only person of this generation who has seen President Eden.

13: "Hurr durr y dus Awtom not lik teh prezident?"

Well, aside from the fact that Colonel Autumn and Eden have different methods for reclaiming America (Autumn wants to rid America of the dangerous mutants like feral ghouls, super mutants, and the mutated animals, while Eden want's to wipe out all mutation and let the Enclave rebuild humanity by themselves), how would you feel if a computer was taking you job? Since Colonel Autumn commands the troops, he's closer to them than Eden, even if he is their president. Autumn is a human that they see and can relate to. Eden is some dark mysterious figure left up to speculation. In short, the troops trust Autumn more.

On Autumn's rank, you do realize that not every military installation has a standing General, right? Forts don't keep a General on standby just to give orders. Generals give orders, and those under him pass it along. When no orders come, the military doesn't just stop. Life goes on. It isn't outlandish to think that maybe an Enclave General is somewhere else, or perhaps that they don't have a current General, and Colonel Autumn is the highest ranking member at the time (you have to remember that, in the previous Fallout game, at least half of the Enclave was destroyed on the Western Seaboard, along with the President and several high-ranking military commanders).

14: "Why can't I properly understand President Eden's plan to rebuild America?"

As I said before, President Eden wants to rebuild America by wiping the slate clean. The Enclave has water purifiers to keep their bodies free of radiation, but they don't have purifiers on the scale of cleaning the entire freaking Potomac River.

And why DON'T people just drink rain water? Well, because the world is so filled with radiation and fallout that drinking rainwater would be about the same as drinking from the irradiated river.

What's that? Just get purification drums to clean the water? You think we would have seen those earlier, considering the war's been over for two hundred years?

Oh, yes; everyone is living the good life right now, like those water beggars. People seem fine in the game because it'd be boring if everyone was always whining and complaining that there isn't enough food or water. Why do you think Dr. Li and her team are working on purifying vegetables in their lab?

Ah, yes: why don't people just drink form the river or toilets? Radiation certainly doesn't harm people! Not one bit!

You do, however, make a good point about the Brahmin milk.

As for Eden's FEV, he EXPLICITLY states that it is a MODIFIED strand of the traditional FEV. Modified SPECIFICALLY to eliminate mutagens in organisms.

15: "Why is Colonel Autumn still the enemy?"

Remember that whole "Disregard the President's orders and kill that Vault hooligan whose father I inadvertently killed." thing? I'm willing to bet good money that you didn't sneak through those Enclave soldiers to the President.

Autumn is still trying to tie up lose ends, but now you've already killed several of his men. Pretty obvious, in my opinion.

16: "Oh no! Why does the Enclave base esplode?! So much science, gone!"

You're forgetting that causing Eden to self destruct is COMPLETELY OPTIONAL. If you do, you're basically saying "The Enclave is too evil to be any good! Everything must go!". If you don't like that logic, then don't cause Eden to self destruct, you dummy.

17: "Why is Colonel Autumn still the enemy?" Part 2

You keep asking the same question in different sections, and I've already answered it.

18: "Why does the Brotherhood of Steel not want the Enclave to own the purifier?"

The Brotherhood of Steel has its roots in the Great War, where it started with a group of American soldiers who learned that the scientists they were guarding where preforming illegal and unethical FEV tests on living humans, sanctioned by the government of the United States (read: Enclave). They soon deserted, and founded the Brotherhood of Steel.

The Brotherhood of Steel's primary source of knowledge on eht Enclave is from the Western Seaboard, from the previous game, where the human President basically had the same mindset as Eden: "Kill the muties, let the Enclave rebuild."

The Brotherhood of Steel has to assume that this is still there plan of action, and can't allow the good people of the Capital Wasteland to be exterminated like this.

19: "What's the deal with Liberty Prime?"

Liberty Prime was a pre-war robot designed solely for the liberation of Alaska from Chinese Communists (read the terminal entries, you nark). He was designed so that American lives could be saved while a single robot took all the hits. China's Chimera tanks easily outmatched any American tanks at the time, which is why production went into this glorious piece of robotics. Unfortunately, production was slow, and eventually the United States had to go into Alaska without him. The bombs fell soon after, and production halted indefinitely while humanity bathed in atomic fire and radiation.

The Brotherhood of Steel has heavily modified and fixed what was left of Liberty Prime after the bombs fell, and you have to remember that power armor looked very different during the time Liberty Prime was being developed. He couldn't register the Enclave as American because those data files could never have existed.

Additionally, the Great War is really just the Cold War at a later date, with China, instead. The Cold War was the war of propaganda.

20: "Why is Project Purity so lethal?"

Well, your father sabotaged the purifier to keep the Enclave stalled. In doing so, he let out a radiation spike that killed everyone in the room (except for Autumn, who injected himself with something; no one really knows what) and flooded the room in radiation.

But wait, you say (several freaking times, I might add): if the room is flooded with radiation, why don't I pop these neat pills and take some rad-away? Well, you could do that. But that wouldn't protect you from the second radiation spike that hits you as you turn on the purifier.

But wait, you say (again): why would they build such a silly machine if it could backfire and cause radiation spikes? Because it's the best that seven people could do with 200 year old degraded technology and spare parts. If you fiddle with the insides of your microwave, it's going to explode, but the manufacturer can't really stop you from doing that, so they just straight up tell you not to (or they don't, and let natural selection take its toll). Creating safeguards is a part of science and experimenting. I'd be surprised if they DIDN'T have a lockdown room in the purifier.

But wait, you say (and again!): What about a remote shutdown? If radiation floods the room, how are they going to get it working?

Remember that the room only flooded with radiation because James DELIBERATELY sabotaged the purifier! Also, they may not have had the resources or the time to add something like a remote ventilation system, or something like that. This purifier is made out of two hundred year old scrap metal that has been rusting. I'm surprised the damn thing didn't completely explode when it was turned on.

21: "Why can't Bethesda write even a basic storyline?"

They can, and they have. They have gone above and beyond with their storytelling and lore, but people like you only see in 2-D. You have to see in 3-D in order to get the full Fallout experience.