How is Marcus alive?

Discussion in 'Fallout: New Vegas Discussion' started by Idiotfool, Feb 27, 2013.

  1. Idiotfool

    Idiotfool Still Mildly Glowing

    220
    Apr 12, 2007
    So, I've been debating making a mod for Lily to give her alternate armors and I decided to read the wiki information on Super-Mutants out of curiosity and to see the different mutant armors. I came across Vree's dissection of a super-mutant, which says that their life-span is increased 10% from a normal human.

    If we assume an age of 80 years, give or take, then a Super-Mutant should live to 90 or so. If Fallout 1 was set to start in 2161, and it's 2281 in New Vegas, that makes Marcus > 120 years. Are super-mutants immune to aging, after all? It makes sence, if their cells destroy genetic aberrations, but I don't understand why the initial holotape says 10% increase in lifespan.

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Oppen

    Oppen FIXT n°1 fan

    Dec 26, 2011
    I'd wander how do Vree knows the lifespan, being the super-mutants a relatively new thing at that time. How do they determine it?
     
  3. DevilTakeMe

    DevilTakeMe Where'd That 6th Toe Come From?

    463
    Sep 12, 2011
    She may not be referencing age, but the expectancy of life in the Wastes under the conditions affecting everyone. While physically hardier, super mutants are about 30% less intelligent and likely to fail in certain survival situations.

    Or, the short answer is pseudoscience.

    The long answer is the Pan-Immunity Virus and the Forced Evolutionary Virus. The ends of chromosomes are covered in nucleotide sequences called telomeres. Telomeres shorten as the body cells continue to replicate, limiting the number of cellular divisions as part of the aging process.

    With PIV, as part of its function to protect the DNA at a cellular level, it is possible that these telomeres do not shorten, or is reduce the shortening process. Cells may not have a limit of the number of replications, and the loss of information from chromosomes is mitigated.

    With accumulative changes to molecular and cellular structure disrupting function over the passage of time mitigated, this means that super mutants age slower than Vree thinks, since she may have based her observations on one type of cell than another.
     
  4. Oppen

    Oppen FIXT n°1 fan

    Dec 26, 2011
    One point is that the Master believes not all the super mutants are stupid, but that it is somehow related to previous mutations due to exposure to radiation. I don't know how much of this ends up being true, though.
    Also, supporting your point, it's noticeable how the mutant's brains age faster than their bodies, according to Fallout 2 most mutants are senile by that time, but all of them seem healthy in every other aspect.

    About the telomeres, if we are going to make assumptions, we can say the virus somehow safely controls the activation of telomerase, an enzyme that basically adds lenght to the telomeres.
     
  5. DevilTakeMe

    DevilTakeMe Where'd That 6th Toe Come From?

    463
    Sep 12, 2011
    Different cells in the body do regenerate at different rates, and the brain generally does not renew its cells as often as others (as a matter of fact, the cerebral and visual cortex cells are there from birth).

    So while the body remains young, the brain will eventually use itself up. Though, it does not effect everyone the same way.
     
  6. Oppen

    Oppen FIXT n°1 fan

    Dec 26, 2011
    Yes, but it's a different proccess of aging. As you said, telomere aging is actually caused by cell reproduction. So neurons will not suffer from that aging, but from cell death instead, because they don't reproduce so often to have problems with shortened telomeres (I think I read there is actually a really small rate of cell division for brain cells instead of a null one, something like one division in about three years, but I'm not really sure).

    Anyway, my point is that in mutants it seems to be more accentuated, since most senile humans also have a pretty aged body.
     
  7. Idiotfool

    Idiotfool Still Mildly Glowing

    220
    Apr 12, 2007
    Ignoring SCIENCE! reasons, or coming up with plausible ones, are we to assume, now, that super mutants and ghouls are immortal? Did Fallout canon indicate any senility in ghouls, as well?
     
  8. Tagaziel

    Tagaziel Panzerkatze Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Dec 10, 2003
  9. Oppen

    Oppen FIXT n°1 fan

    Dec 26, 2011
    I don't know about any senile ghouls, and I remember a few of them being really old and pretty much sane. Set's son, for example, is around since prewar days, the same for your ghoul companion (I don't recall his name, I guess it was Miguel but I'm not sure) in New Vegas. So I guess they don't get senile. But they might become feral, which may or may not be related to brain cells degeneration AFAIK.


    Anyway, about the sterility, there is something I find weird. If the problem is FEV fixes the gametes, then female supermutants should be able to produce embryos instead of eggs (since the main difference between them is the diploid nucleus), meaning they're not only fertile, but constantly cloning themselves. Also, Vault City seems to use assisted fertilisation, and to have a great knowledge about bioengineering, so that means the tech exists to restore eggs (again, the cell machinery, aside from the DNA, is supposed to remain intact) and insert full cells as nuclei, which is roughly what is done to clone a subject. That would mean infertility is not really so much a problem for mutants, in the way that is solvable.
     
  10. Lone Cat

    Lone Cat It Wandered In From the Wastes

    147
    Apr 8, 2012
    1. And that means the effects of FEV is still 'random'?
    2. Marcus may comes from Vault 8 or 15, or he might have been a clever man in his human life (and might join the Unity voluntary). dunno but before a duel against Jacob. he was a devout underlings to the Unity and believed that the organization can survive long after the Master has gone.
    Yet.. look at Quincy mission, one of a Supermutant H.O. 'advertised' herself that she is completely sterile. that could mean that a super mutant may understood the features of one's own body, and can still live alongside humans and ghouls.
     
  11. DarkCorp

    DarkCorp Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 27, 2003
    Loathe as I hate to reference Feral Ghouls, I was led to believe their craziness stems not from biological factors and more from external stimuli. The wiki states that the most likely factor to cause this condition stems from being away from social society (whether ghoul, human or even super mutant), which reminds them of their humanity. If exiles (or essentially abandoned or locked away from societal contact, much like regular humans, one is more prone to being more mentally unstbale.

    Now there is a slight possibility neurological degradation is continuous, and that its affected by different as of yet unknown factors. However, the existance of ghouls like Harold, Miguel, Set, etc, who have been around for a while and been through different enviornments, tends to argue against this possibility.
     
  12. Gaspard

    Gaspard Kasparov

    833
    May 7, 2009
    Also - the feral ghouls tend to "hunt" in packs. Sure, Mojave had single wandering ferals as well, but FO3 had them run at you like in 28 Days Later
     
  13. DarkCorp

    DarkCorp Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 27, 2003
    Another example of Beth being either lazy or not giving a shit. Its not hard to work with a feral ghoul concept such as complex, animal like bonds, that eventually develope when more ferals hunt together, akin to normal animals. Maybe with enough social exposure they might even be able to tap back into their humanity?

    So instead of zombies, even the most basic bad guy can still be seen more than expendable fodder. Will perks like animal friend work on them? Seems silly I know but its just an example of how any idea can be better and more interesting if a tiny iota of thought is even put into it.

    The most logical explanation would be the loss of any social contact (which requires one to think in a dynamic way to remain part of the group and rely less on pure animal instinct to survive), causes the ghoul to slowly go feral.
     
  14. Walpknut

    Walpknut This ghoul has seen it all

    Dec 30, 2010
    Feral Ghouls can also result from emotional Trauma I think, the soldiers of Searchlight probably underwent a lot of mental stress after being exposed to long term radiation without realizing it and having to watch a lot of people die, and themselves being slowly turned into Ghouls, some of them are still well fed as some of the Trooper Ghouls use the Human NPC Ghoul model and they are just regular crazy, while others, having wandered out and probably secluded themselves out of depression (like Edwards) just went down the Feral route a lot quicker. At least that's my interpretation of it.
    Same thing with Vault 34 were they were trapped against their will in the Vault while being irradiated and not knowing what Ghoulification was, food running out and people turning on each other.

    Maybe some of the Ferals in FO3 in the subways just kind of congregated there as a primitive instinct to avoid the sun.

    Altho they not attacking you if you wear a mask that doesn't even look like them is pretty stupid.
     
  15. Wintermind

    Wintermind Vault Senior Citizen

    Jan 21, 2011
    Hiding in the tunnels to avoid the sun is actually cool, but we all know it's the wrong kind of cool for Bethesda.
     
  16. laclongquan

    laclongquan Boned Hunter of Sister

    347
    Jan 11, 2008
    IF we are talking about feasible reasons, I could think of many:

    1. The BOS bunker in San francisco. The only caretaker got killed by Horrigan, and only Chosen One has access to it. since BOS doesnt send other members to it durin the event of F2, that mean Chosen One and party has the run of the place. Is it far fetched to think every member in Chosen One's party will have top-class medical care in the Wasteland? Just think about its ability to provide implants...

    2. Valut 13 has a friendly doctor with access to Vault facility? A good checkup during the travel from Broken Hill to Vault 13.

    3. There's a resident doctor in Broken Hill is it not?

    So that mean it's highly possible that Marcus at the end of Fallout 2 is at the top of his health.
     
  17. DarkCorp

    DarkCorp Sonny, I Watched the Vault Bein' Built!

    Oct 27, 2003
    But in the ending, it is explicitly states that he vanishes into the East. I assume that means into Colorado/Utah/etc.
     
  18. laclongquan

    laclongquan Boned Hunter of Sister

    347
    Jan 11, 2008
    Does that invalidate my reasonings in anyway?