Arabic peoples and communities in the Fallout universe?

Discussion in 'General Fallout Discussion' started by Byzantine, Oct 21, 2014.

  1. Taskeen

    Taskeen It Wandered In From the Wastes

    191
    Jul 27, 2007
    I had a step-Grandmother (before she passed) and she was full Lebanese and Arabic descent. She came over to the U.S. before the 50s. So yes, there were Middle Eastern immigrants before the Nuclear Saber rattling Era. My family is pretty diverse and I'm definitely am glad to have grown up around multiple ethnic groups.

    Anyways, I always liked the settings in FO1/2, but I always wondered what was actually happening in other desolate areas, even ones still in the U.S. Like say, what would NE Minnesota be like? Or, how have people fared in other countries (any of them)?

    Specifically regarding Arab-American populations in the U.S. - and since I find ancestry and demographics interesting, According to this information "the first major wave of Arab immigration in the late 19th century, the majority of Arab immigrants have settled in or near large cities."

    I'm one of those people though that don't really care if X game doesn't represent enough Y of culture. I just want to play the game (if its at all decent). Oh, I'm also small part native too, and I raaaarely see even games where you play as a full Native or see much (Wasteland 2 did alright with that).
     
  2. TomJ

    TomJ It Wandered In From the Wastes

    186
    Jul 12, 2015
    One reason for having the Mormons around is they are easier to mock. No one really gives a damn about them and there church is weird and if you do some digging, is corrupt. Hell the own tracts of land and for profit businesses, but don't have hospitals, schools, homeless shelters and the like, like the Catholics and Methodists do. So, it makes sense that the Mormons would own a Vault, since all of their tithe money has to go somewhere, and they care more about hording things for a potential disaster, than making the lives of people better in the mean time. This can be a reason as to why Catholics and Methodists don't show up in game because they were busy dealing with the mess before the bombs hit, like the Followers, and weren't concerned with the possibility of war. The Mormons on care about perpetuating themselves, not helping people more broadly. I grew up in Nevada, they may be nice, but their church is corrupt, and my family was Catholic and I'm saying that.
     
  3. Vault Maker

    Vault Maker Vault-Tec Cartographer

    149
    Jun 27, 2006
    Circling back to the Mormons as they appear in-game:

    Are the Mormons, or more accurately their Mormon beliefs, in the New Vegas DLC mocked? I don't think they were going to be in Van Buren. But I haven't read the VB design docs in many years, and didn't play the NV DLC.

    In plain New Vegas, and as I recall in Van Buren, the Mormon characters are identified as such, but it's mostly in a matter-of-fact way; why they know each other, how they got to be where they are, etc. It's function is more setting, backstory, and character motivation, but any actual practice of the religion isn't very important (or even depicted).

    I thought that the rationale for having Mormons in Van Buren was that they made sense in the setting, being strongly associated with Utah.
    I can't think of any other area covered in a Fallout game so closely associated with a particular religion.

    Quite right. One of the original devs (maybe Avellone in the Bible) noted that depicting a religion's beliefs in either a mocking or respectful way was far more trouble than it was worth. Someone was going to get bent out of shape.
     
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  4. DarkCorp

    DarkCorp Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 27, 2003
    The United States is a nation of MANY different religions. I highly doubt Utah had ONLY Mormons living in the state.

    So what I take from it is Utah = Mormons, Mormons special.
     
  5. SnapSlav

    SnapSlav NMA's local DotA fanatic

    Jul 1, 2012
    None whatsoever. At all. IN THE SLIGHTEST.

    No hyperbole at all. The Mormons are neither glorified nor trashed in Honest Hearts. Neither of the Mormon characters in the game have much to say about their faith, they only have a few answers about the group and organizations, themselves. Considering the post apocalyptic setting that the New Canaanites prospered in, they were much less nutty than their modern day counterparts, and by extension, the characters who came from New Canaan whom you can meet. At the end of the day, it's all about the story, and that's what they were most concerned about in their depictions of these devoutly pious individuals. The only one who really offered much commentary about his faith, Graham, likened to to any other tribe. That tribes were just another extension of human familial collectives, and that at the end of it all, you always have your tribe to fall back on.
     
  6. Vault Maker

    Vault Maker Vault-Tec Cartographer

    149
    Jun 27, 2006
    If you've ever met a non-Mormon from Utah, they may not say "Utah = Mormons", but they will probably say "Utah = mostly Mormons", and that the Mormons tend to be cohesive, to the point of insularity. The insularity comment was made to me by a very reasonable Mormon from Oregon (proudly the least church-attending state in the Nation!).

    Thanks, that tends to confirm that the inclusion of Mormons mostly stays true to the long-ago dev comment about not touching too deeply on religion. I don't think it's about the Mormons being special, but about a touch that lends authenticity to the setting.

    It's always been my unerstanding that Utah is less diverse on religion than most of the US. I wonder if demographic data supports that.
     
  7. DarkCorp

    DarkCorp Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 27, 2003
    My argument is why bother with specifying it in the first place? They do not have to go deeply into Islam or Judaism either. Just a mention would do.

    I believe the originals deliberately did not mention specific religions because of percieved favoritism.

    As Snap pointed out, it was so vague anyways so why bother at all?

    Regardless of whether the Mormons have a majority in Utah or not (I believe they do), it can be argued that other religions from within or outside would have established a presence as well.

    Its un-equal representation, plain and simple.
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2015
  8. The-Artist-64

    The-Artist-64 "Set Phasers to Fun."

    239
    Jul 19, 2015
    I have some Mormon relatives from Idaho (great grandparents, no one I'd know), and I lived in Nevada for a lot of my life. Believe me when I tell you- yes, they practically own the state of Utah, and they have a foothold in Idaho and Northeastern Nevada. Whether that's a good thing or a bad thing, I'll leave it to your discretion.

    Yes, the reason we don't have real world religions in Fallout is because people are way to sensitive nowadays. Some are especially touchy when it comes to religion, both atheist and religious people. All in all, I think Black Isle made the right choice in avoiding religion altogether aside from little references (and the Hubologists, because they were hilarious). When real-world religions are incorporated into a story, they tend to either be praised way too much, such as the annoying references to scriptures in Fallout 3, or are demonized for no apparent reason. It's hard to find a balance, really.

    Anyways, I always thought that in a dangerous wasteland you don't have time to memorize scriptures or read a bible. That's why a lot of the religions died out after the war. However, folks with a little too much time on their hands began to form cults. Jonathan Faust, for example, led his group of people out of Vault 15 in 2141 presumably to form a Shady Sands type community. Of course, he went mad after an encounter with deadly pit vipers. Thus, you get the Vipers, a raider cult worshiping snakes.

    On that note, some old world religions proved hard to stomp out. Mormons survived because they have a history of resilience, and they had Vault 70 all to themselves. Because Vault 15 was packed vault dwellers with extremely different ideologies and cultures, gangs were formed by those sharing similar qualities. Basically, minor circles practicing their religions, such as Aradesh and his fellow Hinduists or the original Garl Death-Hand and...whatever weird beliefs he had. It makes sense that the vault would burst into bunches of gangs and villages practicing their own religions. For that reason, I've always found Vault 15's social experiment to be the most interesting.

    That, and it lines up perfectly with the 'theatrical malfunction' style of the Black Isle Vaults. I've never liked the modern Vaults in that they're all concentrated in one area, and their experiments are way too wacky.

    (As a humorous sidenote, people saying Nevada wrong is my beserk button. I almost killed Chomps Lewis in New Vegas out of rage when he pronounced it incorrectly. XD)
     
    Last edited: Aug 9, 2015
  9. ChildServices

    ChildServices Banned

    319
    May 22, 2015
    It doesn't have to be mocking at all. Even then, Imagine if Joshua Graham was a Muslim and said and did more-or-less the exact same things, only with a different book as the basis for it.

    That shit would not fly with the video game press. It'd be "Islamophobic" and "reinforcing negative stereotypes". I'm willing to bet half of you guys in this thread who're all crazy for diversity in video games would probably deride the character design as racist.
     
  10. SnapSlav

    SnapSlav NMA's local DotA fanatic

    Jul 1, 2012
    Because they have a tendency to make themselves announced. They more than likely were specific about it in the game because they culturally were specific about it. When I was a youngin' and a huge fan of Doom, my fandom went so far that when I found some books written about the games, I picked them up and read them, too. They depicted a very different outlook on the PC games than what the games depicted, but they were still very authentic, as well as entirely based on the game material. Much of the books focused on Mormons and their religion when the main characters reached the Hell on Earth (D2) part of the storyline. It always reinforced that these people were Mormons and the main character would always reinforce that he was raised Catholic. Why? Well because they DO culturally separate themselves in some sense. They're not very big on silent integration. Even here in So Cal, where they aren't a dominant presence but still a notable presence, while they might not be trying to get you to convert at every opportunity, they are taught to self-identify. Thus, in a fictional timeline where a Mormon community in a post apocalypse sprouts up and prospers, it would make sense for them to pass on that strong self-identifying mentality. As far as game design is considered, it's just being authentic to have that showcased. I grew up around Mormons, and believe you me, they still have that powerful self-identification even when they're NOT trying to convert you.

    It's just people being stupid. Nothing can help that. I've heard WAY too many people use the words "racist" and "sexist" as knee-jerk pejoratives without any realization that they have no idea that they're not talking about those things AT ALL, and these are consequences of both people being stupid and cultural indoctrination. Just look at *COUGH* "a couple particular threads" where the subject of misogyny comes up, and you'll see people who have been fully indoctrinated into believing that EVERYTHING comes back around to sexism and inequality, because that ideology was so heavily reinforced again and again to the point of being reflexive. Same with anti-Islamaphobia. It's just another self-guilt-shaming that some people do in a bizarre ritualistic fashion to banish their own demons visa vis projecting them onto others.

    If a badass character who can conduct himself civilly and discuss with you a considerable amount of his history and motivations and come off as both heroic and anti-heroic but not at all villainous can be allowed to carry out some degree of righteous retribution, and if NONE of that behavior is in any ways at all altered, save for what you call the name of his source of inspiration, the reaction to that behavior says INFINITELY more about the bigotry of the reactors than it could possibly say about anything else.
     
  11. beans00

    beans00 It Wandered In From the Wastes

    163
    Nov 19, 2009
    in fallout we dont negotiate with terrorists
     
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  12. TomJ

    TomJ It Wandered In From the Wastes

    186
    Jul 12, 2015
    As for other religions not appearing, it is weird. Not all of what ever religion would live somewhere that would get bombed and rural areas wouldn't have gone down hill as quickly. I'd imagine there are some rural areas where there are Jewish, Buddhist, or what have you religions living because things didn't go down as quickly and people could perpetuate their religion. Buddhism for example doesn't have a complex philosophy and any one that could read books found in temples could go on preaching the Dhama. I imagine any other opportunist would do the same and use religion to control a group. Case in point, the Family in Fallout 3. They may not have been religion, but the vampire stuff had to come from old Dracula or Twilight-esque books.
     
  13. ChildServices

    ChildServices Banned

    319
    May 22, 2015
    It'd be awfully convenient if there happened to be a large Muslim community living out in the countryside, when ethnic minorities (imported ones, anyway, not native ones) overwhelmingly tend to cluster around urban centres. It's true in pretty much any Western country, that's why when people in big cities are asked how many Saracens they think their country has, they tend to answer 15-20% instead of what is usually the reality of 1-3%. If the majority of the nuclear ordnance was targeting important industrial and urban centres, it really isn't that weird for other religions not to appear, at least not in any significant narrative way.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2015
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  14. Vault17

    Vault17 Banned

    34
    Jul 6, 2015
    Some perhaps, but then some would turn to it, unable to deal with tragedy such as a nuclear holocaust. You also seem to forget sadists and people with a tragic view of reality who would join a cult/religion based on their happiness the apocalypse happened. Also, there would still probably be holdovers from older religions who would use the apocalypse as an example that they were right all along.

    That's comforting to most people, especially those in shit situations. The concept of an afterlife also assists with getting by day to day drudgery because you ultimately win in the end, it keeps you going.

    There has never been any religious proselytizing in any of the Fallout games, minus the Children. However, I think it is an important aspect that should be explored even more than it already has because a religion is the focal point of the community's culture, morals, style, whathaveyou. The development of local religion and superstition would be a key element in the rebuilding of a healthy society and there is no better game than Fallout to examine such a crucial feature.

    I get that, but having religious characters, even ones that are directly damning you to hellfire, aren't actually the dev telling you personally, the player, these things. This is an RPG and there must be world building - someone, somewhere believes these things and would tell it to your face. How your character reacts to this person and what they say depends on who your character is. I would disagree that Fallout is used as a recruitment tool for Mormons, which is what you seem to be implying.

    But no one religion is trumpeted as self-evidently correct. The whole point is that there are multiple competing religions, each with their own hypocrisies and contradictions. Far from making it more black and white, the application of absolute morals to a wasteland still struggling to even be civilized makes for an extremely interesting dynamic.

    Except it's not. (And to add a quip worthy of Truman, common sense ain't common.) People have a tendency to compartmentalize themselves away from the "other" that isn't their friends and family; even today with most of the world societies civilized, people ignore the golden rule all the time because the things they do wrong against others aren't a problem, in their minds. Consideration for all others takes some extremely strong community glue and perhaps rote repetition - traditional religions and strong nationalist movements (perhaps the same thing) are the first things to come to mind to serve this purpose.

    The golden rule may be "common sense" but just because it's there doesn't mean most people will apply it. Thus a communal system of behavior must highlight it and enforce it, i.e. religion.


    At any time there is a person who would willing kill you just to get a simple little trinket, or even just for pleasure. Involve the breakdown of civilization like in Fallout and that number of people increases exponentially. Some people do what they think is right or what they think is amiable - others think and act on what they can get away with. So not only do I contend that the golden rule does not come naturally to people, a post-apocalyptic setting would actually work against it due to the horrors of how people treat each other when unbound by common law. Thus the need of an organized basis (religion) to keep pushing it.

    But where is the fun and community building? It's one thing to have some rules that everyone follows regardless of their social input, it's another to have them actively venerating and repeating those rules on a daily/weekly basis in the company of others in the community.

    How was that the intent at all? The whole point is to have unanchored morals in a sea of amorality.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2015
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  15. DarkCorp

    DarkCorp Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 27, 2003
    Agreed on this point. I guess my words could have been different. I believed not all religion would be wiped out, just a lot of the pre-war religious folks would lose their faith.

    I would say most folks who went from enjoying the benefits of civilization to utter dark ages would most likely lose their faith. Religion had always been strongest with un-educated and when education got around for everyone, you had stuff like the reformation. People started questioning the church and what was once considered the word of god and blasphemous to even question it, changed to fit the times. Religion is flimsy so too can be its adherents. But oh well, agree to disagree.

    After all this and you still disagree that Mormonism is being given a favorite status here?? According to your own words, you should have asked, 'Why weren't other religions given a shout out as well?'

    People compartmentalize because there are limits to how much you can help other people. So being, of course folks are going to help those they are most familiar with first. I guess one could call it factionalism in the basic sense, but that doesn't necessarily have to be religious in nature.

    People still know what right and wrong is, minus those whos minds have been broken due to natural or environmental factors. A better explanation goes, 'I know it is wrong to steal. But I can rationalize it as I am going to be an asshole and do it anyways.' Or, 'My need is simply greater so although I KNOW stealing is WRONG, I am going to do it regardless.'

    But common law is going to exist as soon as the most basic of stage of factionalism takes root. For a strength in numbers situation to take hold, people will need to follow the basic tenets of common sense. Otherwise the shit falls apart. Even in a dictatorship, there are clear basic rules like murder, rape, theft, etc are bad. There will be corruption but even in that situation, there are clear limits. Get out of control and be assassinated. This has nothing to do with religion.

    Dunno what ya mean but I will try to answer. I am saying that it was enough to mention that religion survived the great holocaust. What was UNNECESSARY was to specifically give a shout out to ONLY ONE real life religion. If anything, try using an allegory at the very least.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2015
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  16. Mohamed2001

    Mohamed2001 HATE NEWSPAPERS

    557
    Jan 28, 2013
    I am pretty sure that any religions in the East are wiped out by now due to Caesar's Legion.

    I mean, I am pretty sure he'd not want people to oppose him. And there are several parts about the original Roman Empire written in the Quran sooooooooooo...... I can't speak for other religions, though. Didn't read their holy books.
     
  17. DarkCorp

    DarkCorp Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 27, 2003
    Tandi and Aradesh came from a vault in Cali, AKA NCR. It was said to be a diverse vault with peoples of different ethnicities, cultures and most likely, religions. Do people keep ignoring what I am saying on purpose?
     
  18. ChildServices

    ChildServices Banned

    319
    May 22, 2015
    The idea that the Diversity Vault had to be a thing at all should really tell you that pre-war America wasn't a very diverse place. If it was, every vault would've been like that and there wouldn't have been a need for the experiment because they'd already know that this sort of thing doesn't work. Err, I mean, "does or doesn't work". Yes. That's what I mean.
     
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  19. DarkCorp

    DarkCorp Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 27, 2003
    Even if you follow the real life post war America of the 50s and 60s, you had at the very least 'white' religions. Just to name a few, Protestants, Catholic and Judaism, not to mention subsets like Baptists, Methodists, Lutherans, etc.
     
    Last edited: Aug 13, 2015
  20. ChildServices

    ChildServices Banned

    319
    May 22, 2015
    Most of those have disappeared, though. A nuclear war tends to annihilate the kind of community structures that keep religious groups together. It takes more virtue to stand true to your faith without that structure there anymore than it does to simply abandon it and live for your own survival before anything else; and sadly, most people are not all that virtuous. At most I'd say there's a strong culture of "deism" in the civilised parts, but otherwise you have tribal faiths or n/a.

    The Mormons only really survived because they were a bunch of evangelists who got their own vault all to themselves, meaning the structure of their faith didn't break apart as they'd have all left together and worked towards building their new community from there as a group.