Redux: Download, Not Up To Date

Discussion in 'Fallout Tactics Modding' started by RasterOps, Jun 3, 2012.

  1. TwoEyedYum

    TwoEyedYum Naked Moose

    Jan 21, 2010
    Well, it clearly not about "prefer one instead another". Usually you get WH, and you can also take Bracing IF you feel like you need virtual +5 ST.
    The whole perk system is quite... strange - that's my word for it. Why should i spend precious "perk points" on:
    - Comprehension (books aren't that scarce, and you can up all those skills to 100% without bonus),
    - Die Hard (i can take 3 levels of Toughness instead for +30% GUARANTEED resists),
    - Faster Healing (you do heal in missions, but Heal Rate isn't involved here, and outside mission you heal fast anyway),
    - Night vision (i see everything at night clearly anyway),
    - Rad Resistance (Rad-X here for reason)
    and so on?

    And for now there's no way to change perk effects.

    Yes, it's a Modern Guns by Grey, all gameplay changes credits go to him. But some inventory sprites were created by different people and he probably mentioned them somewhere.

    I see that people still find MG on internetz even if it's russian mod... I will create topic when i finish translate and provide my Mediafire links to latest version + fixes (Grey included Silenced weapons solution by me, heh).
  2. requiem_for_a_starfury

    requiem_for_a_starfury So Old I'm Losing Radiation Signs

    Apr 3, 2003
    Bracing is available earlier in the game, there's no strength cap or agility requirement. It's a useful perk for converting a squaddie, that wouldn't be able to take weapon handling, into a browning wielder without relying on drugs or waiting for power armour.

    It's not strange, some perks are broken, some have an inaccurate description, some were made redundant by changes like CTB and world map travel. The rest are intended for different builds, some perks are better for squaddies than the main character, it's a team game after all.

    Books aren't scarce but there aren't enough to go around every character, with comprehension you only need 9 books before you max out their usefulness, instead of 12. Toughness is good, but not all characters are going to meet that luck requirement.

    Faster healing is probably leftover from before the world map travel was introduced. To be honest the community shot it's self in the foot here, campaigning for free travel on the world map. It was rushed and buggy, with dull random encounters and all the time and money spent producing the special encounters could have gone to something more worthwhile. Like fully animated vault dwellers, combat armour or enemy vehicle sprites. Plus being able to mill around on the world map totally broke the healing, addiction and poison mechanics.

    You might see everything at night but does your character? Rad-X might not be scarce but it's not 100% effective. Rad resistance is useful when you have ghoul squaddies with the glowing one trait.
  3. TwoEyedYum

    TwoEyedYum Naked Moose

    Jan 21, 2010
    Well, that's just MHO, because i haven't much problems with radiation anyway (and managed my Glowing Babies carefully). And honestly there's not many radiation sources which would be dangerous (and usually i get several ENVI armors for that time).
    Each book type was used by me for training of ONE squaddy, which usually was quite enough. I just patiently used everyting i got :)

    Character which might have taken Night Vision usually have either too much acuracy anyway, or just doesn't need that much accuracy at night. Just my way of gameplay.

    Yeah, i know that perk system broken due to developers lack of time, money, time and another 2 years of time. ^^

    Well, i forgotten this, so i beg my pardon. Maybe i'll try low-ST high-EN character in my next game (with bracing -> WH to get all weapons). May be quite interesting.

    Sadly, both perks don't give virtual ST in case of armors with requirements. In some mods armors require ST too.
  4. Endocore

    Endocore Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    Mar 14, 2010

    Thanks fellas, I'm not sure how I missed that info on game.pck in the past; at least it's nothing too important for the game proper rather than general interest. Thanks for the info on my other questions as well.

    Since FOT allows scrolling text descriptions, I think the next time around I'll likely add info on perk requirements to the description of each perk as a convenience for players. I think we all agree that only a minority of perks are truly compelling in light of the most common styles of play. In practice, my top two favorite perks in FOT are Flexible and Tunnel Rat-- in every game I give these to each soldier who meets the respective stat requirements. In Redux, hopefully some of the more confusing issues related to perks/traits are illuminated, as I already revised most of the descriptions; for example, in the original game One-Hander has a quite misleading description, but now players should have a clear idea of its function.

    Regarding the issue of the game's music, I was recently exploring the open-source game Battle for Wesnoth. This soundtrack is by far one of the finest I have ever encountered in any game, which is doubly pleasing since the game is freeware. Though the setting of Wesnoth is high-fantasy (a genre of which I'm typically not very fond) and a majority of the music is too upbeat for a Fallout-related game (despite being otherwise very appealing and sonorous), I think several of the pieces could be adapted to FOT for various purposes. I need to research the soundtrack license in a bit more detail, but perhaps a few songs from this material could be included in a future version of Redux. 8-)


  5. TwoEyedYum

    TwoEyedYum Naked Moose

    Jan 21, 2010
    Yeah, I already enjoyed some descriptions, especially One-Hander. Also finished first bunker missions.

    So far hunting rifle rapes everything else. I somewhat prefered MG's shuffling of skills where various sniper rifles required skill different than any medium range rifle or SMG. In that case player can't abuse power of sniper rifles on all 6 warriors.

    Liked new recruits and the fact that they ARE soldiers now, not pussies that accidentally joined BoS. Liked new stories (well, most of them). Liked dog tags and combination of shortnames and real names.

    BUG: each recruit taken from RM has 2 identical dog tags instead of one. Dunno if it's intended, because Stitch and Farsight have only one.

    BUG: recruited Earl before Rock Falls. Finished Rock Falls, returned to bunker. Now second Earl is available. There's no doubled entities in campaign.txt, so i assume you used [add recruits with ID "mission01"] more than once (in Freeport ending and Rock Falls ending i think). That happens, i know ;)

    Walls in some places still need patching. Especially building with Leader Jesse in Rock Falls. I just snipe him from ouside by finding proper point of view (i think it's a "windowed" door that makes this possible). Another "hole" allows sniping one of "sadist" girl's guards without entering her chamber or even showing in it doors.

    There's still original engine flaw which allows to throw grenades thru walls IN BUILDINGS (which makes no sense), but that definitely not your personal fault. I don't even think we can make something with it :(
  6. requiem_for_a_starfury

    requiem_for_a_starfury So Old I'm Losing Radiation Signs

    Apr 3, 2003
    Vanilla bug.
    Those triggers are different, mission02 and mission03. Unneeded maybe but also unchanged from vanilla as far as I can tell. How did you recruit Earl before Rock Falls?

    Doesn't really sound like a problem to me.
  7. Endocore

    Endocore Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    Mar 14, 2010

    I forgot (yet again :oops: ) to add an additional dog-tag for Farsight and Stitch on the Mission One map; though the engine has an unfortunate feature in duplicating items in a recruit's inventory (carried rather than wielded/worn), in this particular case I actually wanted everyone to have two dog-tags. Perhaps I take the roleplaying aspects too far in some cases, but the way I used the dog tags was that the squad leader takes one tag from a fallen soldier to turn in with his final report (i.e. store in a locker at the bunker), while the other copy stays with the corpse so (imaginary) support personnel can identify the body later for burial. Another problem is that a truly custom main character (as opposed to the prefabs) won't have dog tags either, but since the game ends if such a character perishes I didn't linger on the matter. Ultimately, the dog tags were added merely to facilitate extraneous roleplay and don't directly serve any purpose in the missions or bunkers.

    The "duplicated recruits" problem is frustrating because it only appears sporadically, and is rarely expressed in identical iterations. For example in my last three full playthroughs I only saw this bug once-- and in my case, Vindi (rather than Earl) was duplicated. Though the Redux campaign.txt is in good shape, I'll look more closely into the recruit-add triggers in the missions (as I didn't spend much time on that previously). However, I've also noticed erratic behavior in a converse way-- sometimes recruits are not added to the pool ever. For example in another of my recent playthroughs, the tribal Surisavi and two of the ghoul recruits never became available along with the other tribals or ghouls. Initially I thought some intentionally random results may have been afforded by the devs to add variety to play, but on second thought I now believe this is also a bug or a variation of the underlying issue that also leads to duplicated recruits.

    Semi-ethereal walls are of course a major problem in most tile based games, and were always unusually noticeable in Fallout Tactics. As TwoEyedYum mentioned, this is quite bad in Rock Falls and can lead to a jarring experience for the player. The grenade-throwing miniboss there often gets one of my people by absurdly throwing a grenade at them through the walls of his hut. Though I did some additional tilework on several missions to address aesthetic or thematic issues, I didn't do any work on improving the problem with shooting through walls. Though particular error spots are probably identifiable, in general I don't think the matter is simply tile flags or occlusion data.

    I haven't yet seen any comments regarding the general articles on warfare and such the player may read in the bunkers. Are players enjoying these? I find this sort of material interesting, and added the material on the principle that birds of a feather flock together-- but content dealing with other matters, content with more detail, and so forth are all easily added if others find the general idea appealing.


    Another problem with hunting rifles is: not enough opposing forces use them against the player's team, and not enough enemy soldiers have sufficent skill to use them from a distance against the player. :wink: This is a common variant of a problem with many other weapons as well-- for example, mutants don't have enough AP to fire their heavy weapons more than once per turn; by increasing the AP cost for rocket launchers and heavy machine guns I thus made things more equitable by penalizing the player-characters rather than enhancing the enemy.

    I'm glad to hear you're mostly enjoying the mod, and I look forward to any comments or analysis you may have.

  8. TwoEyedYum

    TwoEyedYum Naked Moose

    Jan 21, 2010
    Main character with CH=9.

    Hm, dunno...
    There's no indentical characters in RM text list, so only identical add-ID values could do that. Every time duplicate was present i just looked into it and it appeared to be my or another modder's mistake.

    I like idea of 2 dog tags, sounds nice and logical.

    Well, heavily locked door thru which you can easily dispatch Leader and his guards one by one (without entering building) - that's sounds like easy rape (= balance flaw). And also on Daisy and her guards - well, on another check i just blasted them to bits with ONE frag grenade, throwing it into thick wall and bypassing it. Wtf :))))

    In that game Bo blasted himself by bad throw. And again after reload. And again. And again... So Bo-ring :)

    Quite enjoyed those, but i must say: while i appreciate those texts, they seem to be... too big, i think. Maybe divide them between more consoles?

    Hell, that's true when i have PE=10 sniper as a main hero :D
    But other squaddies suffer from there guys just ok. And i play on Normal now. After Freeport, RF and Macomb i sold something like 30-40 total hunting rifles, so there's how many of those sniper guys we have :)

    Problem is that i can give rifles to all my guys and they will just supress everything by concentraded (not very accurate but doesn't matter) fire.

    P.S.: Endocore, you said something about new monologs and missions briefings and impossibility to find proper voice acting. I thought of reverse solution. On my request fellow modder Hmt (named 2Hmt at NMA i believe) gave me archive with "null" audio files - they make every existing dialog and briefing "silent", so you can add new ones without any worry. What you thing about it?
  9. requiem_for_a_starfury

    requiem_for_a_starfury So Old I'm Losing Radiation Signs

    Apr 3, 2003
    Hmm my character Charisma 10 and no Earl. You shouldn't be able to recruit characters that haven't been added to the recruit pool, no matter what your charisma.

    There's only a couple of places iirc that have erroneous recruit pool triggers. I've never noticed them cause duplicates in the main campaign before. Endocore did you modify the patched or original bunker maps? The only way of getting duplicates in the patched game (that I remember) are to create a new campaign file from scatch and return to the starting mission or to get demoted.

    The buildings are ramshackle huts, it's believable that you can see/shoot through gaps or thin material. It's even necessary in lieu of being able to blow holes in walls as in Jagged Alliance 2.
  10. TwoEyedYum

    TwoEyedYum Naked Moose

    Jan 21, 2010
    Ah, and last but not least. Perk "Pack Rat" gives description saying "do not choose this perk, it's broken". Actually i can choose it and it works, adding 50 lbs of maximum carry weight. Another skill with same bonus also works just fine.

    Dunno about "faster world map travel" perk, as i didn't choose it anyway in my games.
  11. Endocore

    Endocore Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    Mar 14, 2010

    If anyone has nifty ideas for trivial npcs to add to the bunkers, I'd like to hear about such since almost any addition to the game in this regard is bound to be an improvement over the standard fare. Though some players won't notice such details, to other players such extras are very enjoyable and greatly enhance the experience of playing the game at a minimal cost in modding effort. Some examples of new material along these lines I made for Redux from Bunker Four are:

    --A mutant, a ghoul, and a deathclaw are hard at work moving some boxes of supplies. They gossip amongst themselves about how humans are inferior to their own species in a role-reversal of the sentiments about these creatures commonly expressed by humans.
    --A female soldier seems to be flirting with a mutant soldier, but the mighty mutant seems to feel uncomfortable because she's an officer while he's merely an Initiate; he struggles to politely discourage her interest. Is she pondering romance, or is she merely teasing him because she knows she can frustrate him with impunity given their respective ranks?
    --A new recruit with modesty issues seems to be upset by the open-air design of the bunker's latrine area.
    --An expansion of the Casey (mechanic from Junction City) character's story is available if the player returns to Bunker Four after moving on to Bunker Five. Though rather dramatic, this expansion was accomplished with minimal effort by simply adding a few lines of dialogue and is a good example of the general design principle to which I'm referring.

    Perhaps not everyone has advanced modding skills with the FOT Editor to join in a conversation about technical matters, but since the goal of Redux is to generally improve all aspects of gameplay novel ideas on any FOT-related subject are welcome. Often one solid idea can lead to a flowering of new content not apparent in the original notion itself.


    This "duplicated recruits" issue is rather complex, and perhaps an illuminating experiment in how few characters most of us likely use in a given playthrough. Thanks to requiem_for_a_starfury and TwoEyedYum for their insights and expertise. :clap:

    I see now part of the problem was my attempt to get all of the tribal recruits to become available rather than merely some of them, since I believe this is a bug or at least undesirable. However, my solution-- adding an additional trigger to modify recruits tagged mission03 at Bunker Two-- has introduced a much more obnoxious bug that clearly must be eradicated even at the expense of leaving the original issue intact. I verified from a savegame that after Rock Falls recruiting Vindi and Earl at Bunker One and then moving on to Bunker Two for the first time results in a one-off duplication of Vindi and Earl; the reason for this is that all the mission03 recruits are duplicated upon initially entering Bunker Two, but the player will only notice if he has one (or more) of them in the field rather than in the recruit pool at the particular time the trigger fires. I fixed this for the next version of Redux. I also removed the original modify recruits tagged mission03 trigger from mission03 itself, to catch possible cases such as TwoEyedYum experienced where recruits become available early. Only the trigger in Bunker One to add the mission03 recruits remains. I'm now thinking that perhaps if several successive directives to modify the recruit pool were placed in the general trigger there, this would likely resolve the missing recruits issue yet remain innocuous since the broader trigger would activate instantly and only one time upon entering the bunker; some testing will be required to see if this is true.

    The other problem then regards why TwoEyedYum had accelerated access to recruits while requiem_for_a_starfury did not when both were using characters of similarly high charisma. I can't recall ever using a main character with a charisma higher than 6 or 7, and haven't had time to try starting a new game and playing missions one through three with a high charisma pc. Yet I'm sure we can get to the bottom of this matter fairly quickly if more information is collected. Any additional details on everyone's experience will be much appreciated, as there must be some other tangible difference between the game states/character builds. What were the main character reputation and rank levels when checking the recruit pool for early availability of the mission03 recruits? A remaining mystery then is to elucidate what criteria are used by the engine to determine the details of an accelerated access to recruits when considering the character's stats, rank, and recruit-access related perks. Are these criteria hidden away in the engine, or are they transparent and externalized (i.e. based on data in this or that map or campaign.txt)?

    Unrelated to our current discussion but on the general subject of recruits, I believe I resolved all issues in the game with Riddick, the Grimm Brothers, and Pipboy sometimes failing to appear in the recruit pool under the otherwise proper circumstances. If anyone still has trouble with any of these characters in Redux, please let me know. On the general subject of character rank, do players find the new Brotherhood ranking system I devised helpful and appropriate, or is it even more confusing than the original system?



    I didn't know demotion causes bugs related to duplicated recruits. Do you have any additional info on that problem? This could certainly be a nuisance for a player who slays npcs in Special Encounters (which I never do but was apparently expected to be standard practice by Microforte's designers), and I'd like to look into the matter.


    I'll restore a full description for the Pack Rat perk next time. :)

    Redux already makes use of several empty/silent sound files, so I think your general idea on that point is practical. For example, in the original St. Louis mission General Dekker repeatedly refers to Paladin Solo as "she" and speaks of "Solo and her troops." Since whenever Paladin Solo's own voice plays on my computer a puddle of testosterone materializes under each speaker, the Dekker voiceover is clearly all wrong and I simply got rid of the latter when changing the text. Another case is seen in Vault Zero, where I felt the original attempts to express the player's mini-objectives during the course of the mission were a serious design failure guaranteed to cause confusion; my revisions necessarily involved the elimination of several General Dekker voiceovers now replaced by silent mp3s. Yet in both examples these new texts could be presented as if from an anonymous narrator rather than a radio-call from General Dekker, so I feel the lack of an accompanying voiceover is not noticeable.

    I'm reluctant to mix-and-match muted portions with spoken bits that would be simultaneously experienced by a player as this typically seems hokey to me, and I would also like to keep as much of the original voice-acting as possible. Certainly I want my money's worth of multimedia entertainment from a game for which I forked over some cash (Fallout Tactics was actually one of the last commercial games I ever purchased before giving up in exasperation with the direction of the commercial game market years ago). However, I also feel strongly a well-conceived mod should always strive to increase rather than diminish anything of value in the original experience. I'm still frustrated I wasn't able to find a way to make use of all the fine voice acting by Dwight Schultz as Gammorin in Osceolla, but in that case since this material also isn't found in the original game I doubt anyone will notice the silence of his revised text-only holodisk journal. A related example from Redux can also be found in Bunker Five. I took a minor character named Tandi appearing in Bunker Three of the dark_ark mod I incorporated into Redux and expanded her storyline, mingling her tale with the tribal siblings Tiduk and Shauri. The question for me then becomes: since Tiduk has no voice-acting to support this new storyline involving Tandi, are players satisfied sometimes hearing Tiduk but other times merely reading his dialogue text with no supporting voice-over?

    Sometimes direct editing of the sound files is also an effective way to make changes-- for example in the Junction City and Newton missions I thought the Reavers referring to "Satansoft" was too ridiculous to tolerate, so I edited both the text and voiceover sound clips; the Reavers now say "Satan" when referring to evil spirits. Perhaps someday if we can get some full-fledged Reaver missions to replace lost content from the game's development period, some sensible exposition of the Reaver religion can be more fully developed on this basis. For now, I merely added a character in Bunker Four named Paladin Mathers who tries to reconcile the Reaver subplot with the larger story of the game.

    Although TwoEyedYum surely knows already, for those who may want to learn the ropes of FOT modding another option to silence unwanted voiceovers might seem to be simply changing the identifier-tag of text segments in a mission's speech file so these no longer correspond to any mp3 filename in the mission's \core\locale\missions\ folder, and then changing the references to that identifier in relevant maps. However, I feel that method is much more work for no noticeable difference to the end-user (since copying and renaming one ten-second blank mp3 is much more efficient than fiddling around in map triggers and so forth). A more extreme method-- deleting unwanted voiceover files-- only works if you've organized your game installation to no longer use *.bos archives (otherwise a copy remains in the archive and the game will use it). While getting rid of *.bos archives is worthwhile since in these days of terabyte-sized hard drives they serve no useful purpose, deleting mp3 files still seems a bad idea because perhaps someday you'll change your mind and will have to waste time digging through the game cds searching for originals.


  12. TwoEyedYum

    TwoEyedYum Naked Moose

    Jan 21, 2010
    Kain is ok, but his "moving" to another bunker with new inventory may confuse, as in early game you can't buy his most precious goods.
    "Priest of fire" in 1st bunker caused some smiles for me :)

    Seems ok, i'd like to see that in game.

    Ahem... Am i right that you placed same "add" tag into several missions? That means that game adds 1 recruit for every such tag. Never add same recruit in that or another mission, they won't replace one another ;)

    It seems fine for me.

    For me answer is NO. I'd prefer no speech sounds for whole game. Yep, would be boring, but at least i won't feel as someone "forgotten" to add some files and added other.

    Works for several files, but not for the whole bunch of them. That's why i requested whole "silent" filepack for my needs.
    Well, maybe i was wrong and simple deleting of those files would do the trick. I just didn't tested. If it works and game won't crash, that would be nice too.

    One can just move those archives to safe place for later usage.

    On current game:
    In Quincy i was dissappointed by "doubled" gratitude from Mayor. Actually she spoken some "WOW YOU ARE HERO" lines for saving whole town (no casualities, ghouls and whores are saved), and as i click "OK", she speaks another text like "thanks for saving my daughter, just thanks". Later in bunker i found 2 new ghoul NPCs and no ghoul recruits (no new recruits at all since Macomb actually). Seems like different endings were triggered... And second one was "prioritized". Also i didn't noticed new items at QM (usually they placed at the top of list when you visit QM after mission). Dunno, maybe that one was intended. :|

    In Springfield everything goes smoothly as far as i can tell. But there's still that stupid "food" item at 2nd bar (building with lone ghoul and chest on second floor) which you can't grab (something blocks direct path). Same item to the left of that one can be picked up without problems.
  13. requiem_for_a_starfury

    requiem_for_a_starfury So Old I'm Losing Radiation Signs

    Apr 3, 2003
    Don't forget charisma plays a part in how many recruits are available. Even if your character is a higher rank you won't see all the available recruits with a low charisma.

    Load a save with a main character above initiate, go to the recruit master and select at least one squaddie of equal rank. Go get your character demoted, fail some secondary objectives or kill some neutrals, what ever it takes to lose reputation. Go to a bunker and visit the recruit master, return any recruits that are now a higher rank than your main character back to the pool. Close the recruit master screen, open it again the higher ranked recruits should have disappeared, do this a few times to make sure. Recruit a new full squad and go to the world map. Return to the bunker and open the recruit master screen, Ta-Daaaa clone army. Alternatively once you've been demoted return all your party to the recruit master, save and reload and you should have a duplicate party, though the above will still happen in that bunker if you have no free party spaces every time you visit.

    I have to admit I don't like novice, footman and Cavalryman, it's been so long since footman has been used for infantry, cavalryman just sounds odd especially since they don't have much of an armoured division. I'd go with military ranks for the lower ranks and ncos then the Squire and Paladin ranks. But then again I've got nothing against the original ranks, except Paladin Lord and the fact Knights were a different branch of the Order. Though it is a different Brotherhood.

    Yes, for me it's only mods for fully voiced games that go silent that's immersion breaking.
  14. 4too

    4too Vault Senior Citizen

    Apr 30, 2003
    Recruit Pool

    Recruit Pool

    Using player character with Charisma 6, [Female / Gifted / Small Frame / Tagged: Small Guns, Big Guns, Doctor.]

    After Rock Falls, at Footman rank, Earl and Steffie available (before Macomb / Preoria).

    Encounter pace feels right for a depopulated waste, not silly as in vanilla FOT.

    Enough encounters with Raiders, enough small amounts of ammo, getting routine, then BANG Ghouls with incendiary grenades up the ante!

    Grenades have some respect in this mod!

    Stuffing those spare points into Throwing for sure. :D

  15. Vault Maker

    Vault Maker Vault-Tec Cartographer

    Jun 27, 2006
    So far I'm enjoying the mod quite a bit, and only through Freeport!

    On the recruit duping issues, I recalled this post:
    ...seemed to have a pretty thorough discussion.

    Here's quick comments on a few things, and a not-so-quick at the end:

    * If ranks can be stripped away from recruits, and that solves the duping issue, I'd say strip it. The game is (mostly) structured to depict the PC as the commander of the squad, and I don't think the ranks really add anything (except in the case of non-joinable NPCs like Barnaky et al) significant to gameplay. They may give the player a little more immersion, but I guess one could roleplay their unit being more of a socialist-egalitarian outfit (ever see that Maoist review of Fallout?), or some anarcho-syndicalist commune, or like the crowd/mob in an Eisenstein film.

    * If someone has an idea for a storyline tweak or added content, I wouldn't worry about sound for the dialogue, just do it. Didn't FO1 and/or 2 have talking heads that had no voiceovers for some lines of dialogue? As I recall (maybe in one of the interviews with a former Black Isle staffer) they had to record the dialogue very early and couldn't add some things in that they wanted to. Honestly, the VO work in FOT is kind of spotty to begin with. I don't blame the actors for it, since the wheels were falling off at Interplay in that period, but even Ermey's stuff isn't great. And it's still better than FO3, where about 98% of the VO was done by maybe...6?...actors.

    Speaking of which, wasn't it true that FOT didn't list a certain narrator in the VO credits? This is where we need cries of Heresy! Sacrilege! Is that fixed?!

    * Now, onto the long ranty bit, which leads into the whole "lame enemies with hunting rifles and Muties without enough AP" trouble. This may be old news, but I'm typing it all out anyway, just for sheer cussedness or something.

    Back in 2005 or so I used the "Newton Reaver Conscription" bug linked above to add the reavers to my squad (just goofing around). One thing that I noticed was that when the game had auto-leveled them (when I first entered the mission), the perks they had mostly made no sense. Glenda Close had something like Stat!, which I assume was related to her high/tagged doctor skill, but many of the others seemed like perks you would never pick for your own character. Given that many perks only make sense for the player's squad, and many don't make sense even then, AND that several don't even work, it seemed like the game's default method for leveling up opponents was inherently flawed.

    So after I played Freeport last weekend, I was looking around in the editors and opened up the entity for O'Reilly, the leader. Toughest thing in the mission. Here's his tag skills and their levels:
    * 45 Small Guns (good, he has an MP5)
    * 76 Unarmed (he has a machete, maybe Melee would be better?)
    * 30 Energy Weapons (W...T...F)

    In the Freeport mission he is set to level 3. According to his character sheet in the entity edtor he would get 17 skill points per level, and he should get 1 perk.

    I opened up Freeport in the Level editor, made a copy of O'Reilly at the insertion point, stripped it's tag name, and changed it to the Player's player index. Saved, then loaded up the Bunker Alpha save from right before I went to Freeport. I ran 6 tests of entering Freeport, O'Reilly would join, and I'd look at his character sheet.

    Every time, his skills were now:
    * 63 Small Guns
    * 94 Unarmed
    * 48 Energy Weapons

    That means the game had raised each tag skill by 6 points every time he leveled up, the equivalent to using just 9 skill points per level. (I didn't notice whether his other skills went up to account for the other 8 skill points per level seemingly wasted.)

    Then there's the perks. For the six runs, I got:
    * Brown Noser (useless for NPC)
    * Here and Now (pretty sure he was still level 3, so did nothing)
    * Swift Learner (don't think it had changed the NPC's XP point count, and since it would never be enough to give him another Level anyway...useless)
    * Team Player (useful!)
    * Stonewall (useful!)
    * Comprehension (useless for NPC)

    Using the Entity editor to level up O'Reilly, all of these perks are available to him without using the "Cheat..." functions. My guess is that the game picks them randomly from the list of available perks.

    All of which is an exceptionally longwinded way of saying that the auto-leveling system is exceptionally crappy. NPCs who can't make good use of a hunting rifle probably have Small Guns tagged, but you can't really assume that a level 4 raider with a gun is better than a level 2 (or even level 1) PC or recruit with the same gun. While the auto-leveling probably makes for some variety between otherwise similar opponents, it's nonsensical.

    I had the thought that a good solution might be to make custom entities for at least named characters, but the more I think about it, it seems like making a whole bunch of the enemies custom would be the way to go.

    That's not really a request, since I'm sure it's a huge amount of work, just an observation!

    @Endocore on Brians
    The main reason I linked to the Paul Brians book is the summaries of all the 300+ (?) stories. The first time I picked it up I thought there must be dozens of FO-compatible ideas in there. I should re-read the intro essay (maybe after I finish a book I'm currently reading on apocalyptic film). If it was written in the eighties, polemics and nuclear war did seem a bit more urgent. For a stronger dose, with some authentic Marxist critique, there is "War Stars: The Superweapon and the American Imagination" by H. Bruce Franklin (1988, but a new edition came out in 2008). A classic!
  16. Endocore

    Endocore Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    Mar 14, 2010

    Thanks go to TwoEyedYum for providing details on his Quincy experience. In my opinion the Quincy mission takes second-place as the most bug-ridden monument to careless design in the original game (top prize for ineptitude and laziness must go to whoever made the original Jefferson mission). However depending on how one plays the Quincy mission, the behavior of Mayor Hillary could still be rather confusing even in Redux. In the original game she may sometimes offer forced speeches on some subjects, but due to the trigger and zone design many players are unlikely to know about this obscure phenomenon. Her interactivity is now based on click-speech instead.

    To experience Hillary's full functionality, the player should send a character to talk to and update her after completing each of the three major human-related objectives (rescuing the hostages at the power plant, rescuing Evita, and rescuing Felix). She will then offer some specific words thanking the player for accomplishing that particular objective. After the player-characters complete all three human-related objectives, she will offer a forced speech congratulating the player on saving Quincy as soon as a character enters her room to indicate the player has won the human-related parts of the mission (she doesn't comment or likely even care about the problems of the ghouls). However in this case, if the player has not been visiting her with progress updates then her click speech remains set at the individual thanks the player would see after accomplishing the condition checked for in the revised mission trigger listed first in the trigger section-- the rescue of Evita.

    Since this redesign is novel to Redux, undoubtedly some fine-tuning remains to be done. Perhaps some of the redundancy should be trimmed (by editing the texts and mp3s similar to the method used on the Reavers mentioned earlier) since hearing Hillary say:

    M06_Hillary_H00_W = {
    I don't know what to say! I don't know how we can repay you.\n\n
    Tell your commanders that the town of Quincy is "honored" to join the Brotherhood, and whatever resources we have are at its disposal.\n\n
    All these years... I never thought people such as you existed. You have done more than just rescue a town, warrior. You have returned something to me that I lost when I was just a girl. Something that I didn't even know was missing.\n\n
    You have given me back my spirit.\n\n
    May you find the happiness one day that I now feel.\n\n
    Farewell, my hero.
    and then immediately hearing her say (if the player has not been visiting her regularly):

    M06_Hillary_H01_W = {
    Well, you have managed to save my daughter and you have done well in spite of the horrific odds. I thank you, strangers, for coming to the aid of my town.\n\n
    For that, you shall have your alliance. Let the Brotherhood and the Town of Quincy be strangers no longer.\n\n
    I will inform your commanders that you have performed well enough to secure the alliance.\n\n
    Farewell, warrior.
    does seem confusing in regard to her mention of granting an alliance.

    Once Hillary offers the player a thank-you regarding an individual quest, her click speech is reset (set to null) in anticipation of setting the next thank-you on a subsequent visit and as an indication she has nothing else to add at the moment (so the player should get on with any remaining quests). Perhaps this could also be refined to leave her click speech on the most recent thank-you offered, though on the other hand I think this may confuse some players into thinking she will eventually have something important to say if they keep talking to her.

    Some of the ghoul recruits (Dillon, Harold, Martin) become available after the Mardin mission (apparently they need time for basic training); if one goes directly to Springfield after Quincy one won't see these until later. However I'm glad TwoEyedYum raised the issue, as I found a bug while checking his comments against the mission triggers. Several other ghoul recruits (Frank, Babs, Darl) should become available immediately after Quincy if the player succeeded in repelling the enemy attack on the ghoul encampment (note this is a different quest than saving Georgi). Yet these bonus ghouls do not currently appear because of a bug-- campaign variable CVAR_M06_GHOULS_SAVED is not toggled to "true" anywhere in Mission 6, which is now the requirement for their appearance ("recruits tagged mission06a").

    This is easily fixed, but before proceeding I think everyone reading should ponder what we as players would actually like to see to get these bonus ghouls into the recruit pool. Perhaps the most sensible requirements would be one of the following:

    1) To get the bonus ghouls, the player must repel the attack on the ghoul camp and Elliot the ghoul leader must survive.
    2) To get the bonus ghouls, the player must repel the attack on the ghoul camp, and both Elliot as well as his brother Georgi must survive.
    3) To get the bonus ghouls, the player must repel the attack on the ghoul camp, both Elliot and Georgi must survive, and the player must successfully save the ghoul hookers held hostage on the other side of town.

    Since in the original game saving the ghoul hookers is an act of kindness but has no effect on gameplay, I had some rather vague plans to implement new content there in a future version of Redux. However, that's perhaps implausibly far off into the distant future while on the other hand the present problem is urgent and needs to be solved right away. Thus one could argue that a requirement to save the ghoul hookers to get the bonus ghoul recruits is a good idea because it rewards the player for making an extra effort. On the other hand, saving the ghoul hookers is the most difficult task in the entire mission; I consider myself a rather good player :) and I fail to save them about one try in four as luck looms large in the task (at least three ladies must survive to count as a victory). Since saving Georgi is also fairly difficult (or at least much harder than saving Evita or Felix), choosing (3) instead of (2) could also be too much for some players. One could as well argue that since currently the only reward for completing (1) is a reputation increase-- and reputation is largely irrelevant in the game-- (1) should be sufficient to get the bonus ghouls as a reward to the player who has gone above and beyond the basic mission objectives and expressed some interest in ghouls by helping the creatures at all. As matters currently stand both in Redux and in the original game, the player will get Dillon, Harold, and Martin as ghoul recruits regardless of whether the ghouls of Quincy are helped-- or should we consider this too merely another bug to be rectified?

    Is there a consensus of opinion on these matters?

    Normal recruit spawns take place after mission 3 and mission 7, so everything else TwoEyedYum and 4too noted seems fine on that count. Regarding TwoEyedYum's note on supplies, for the most part I set the Redux Quartermaster list to only add new items after odd-numbered missions; on that count as well everything is working fine (i.e. new items should appear after Preoria and Mardin, but not after Macomb or Quincy). Whether my approach on the Quartermaster list is a good idea or not is of course a different question.

    While looking at the maps regarding the Quincy/recruits issue, I suddenly realized another bug that simply never occurred to me before regarding the Mother Deathclaw. Deathclaw recruits, including Mother, become available in Bunker Two after completing the Mardin mission (if Mother is rescued). However, one of the first things the player sees upon entering Bunker Three is-- Mother Deathclaw running around the base! Although called "Matriarch" rather than "Mother," I believe this is clearly meant to be the same individual since the same portrait and voice actor are used for both. Honestly I never use deathclaw recruits, but when I thought of this issue I loaded and savegame and recruited Mother at Bunker Two then moved to Bunker Three. The experience of watching Mother chat with herself was ridiculous, and I believe something must be done. Thus the question addressed to everyone arises-- as a player what would you prefer?

    A) Mother (perhaps buffed statwise to reflect she's back in shape after her, eh, family time) does not become available as a recruit until Bunker Four. After the player moves on from Bunker Three, the "other Mother" running around the bunker gets deactivated.
    B) Mother is still available as a recruit after finishing the Mardin mission, and therefore cannot simultaneously appear as an npc in Bunker Three. In this case the Mother on the Bunker Three map would be deleted. Mother's boyfriend at Bunker Three was part of the dark_ark mod I incorporated into Redux; what changes (if any) should be made to him in this case would also be open for discussion.

    What does everyone think about these options?

    Perhaps as an indicator of how few players actually use deathclaw soldiers, I also noticed a call to add the deathclaw recruits (tagged mission07a) is present in the original maps for both Bunker Two and Bunker Three-- yet I don't recall ever seeing this discussed as a bug over the years. This will result in a duplication of any deathclaw recruits on the player's team when entering Bunker Three for the first time as we saw earlier in regard to Earl/Vindi/etc. I fixed this for the next version of Redux by removing the trigger from Bunker Three-- however, one could also argue that the deathclaw recruits need some time for basic training and should not be available immediately after the Mardin mission. In that case, we could just as easily delete the trigger in Bunker Two and restore the trigger to Bunker Three. Do any deathclaw-philes have a preference on this matter?

    Woah, that's ugly. I wanted to take a look at this firsthand since I've never seen it, but apparently I'm going to need a lot more time to set up the situation. In using a savegame from just before going to Cheyenne Mountain, however, I learned numerous other things about the game I never knew before, such as:

    1) If you're a civilian, one soldier with power armor and a plasma rifle is a terrifying monster certain to inspire blood-curdling wasteland legends for generations to come.
    2) The Brotherhood top-brass is a tightly-knit good-old boys club with an epic dedication to nepotism and they will apparently go to outrageous lengths to protect a depraved homicidal maniac from scandal if he is one of their own.
    3) A large number of male civilians in the game offer a clearly female-voiced scream when they perish (bug).

    Despite my best genocidal effort even the Calculator would be hard-pressed to match on its best day (Brahmin Woods, Springfield, Quincy, and Coldwater were ghost-towns consisting of little more than charred, smoldering ruins when I was done), apparently there simply isn't enough bad karma practically available in the game for a Brotherhood General to engage in misconduct sufficient to get him busted down to anything lower than a Paladin Lord (the highest rank of available recruits). I always play as a soldier who takes my duties seriously, and I had no idea the game allowed such consequence-free malicious brutality against innocent civilians.

    During this murderous rampage, I also found a minor bug introduced by my change to Great Bend. I placed a new exit grid to accomodate a player-owned vehicle for loot-storage, which now makes revisiting the Great Bend mission impossible (since the exit grid surrounds the entry spawn point). I feel I'd much rather have the vehicle handy to minimize hassles hauling out all the loot in that mission and see little reason to return to the map once the mission is done, so at least for now I'm leaving that alone-- though since I hope others will further develop the Redux material, anyone else who would like to make a different version of the Great Bend exit grids is welcome to do so.


    I'm glad to hear you're enjoying the action. You chose an unusual character build (small frame + big guns, points to raise medical ability = weapon-related skills must suffer) that may be a challenge to play, which is commendable. What perk/skill strategies are you going to try with this character? Your character you may want to look into the light machine-guns called Vostok or Camden E36 as they become available, depending upon how you plan to utilize her in conjunction with the rest of your squad.

    @Vault Maker

    That could be pretty amusing. :wink:

    I'll check on whether Ron Perlman is listed in the credits, as I can't remember; if not, that stuff is in a text file and can easily be corrected. I think R. Lee Ermey's performance is a considerable disappointment; I'm not sure what the trouble was (poor director, lack of inspiration, low pay, etc) but he seemed clearly to be simply reading the words in most cases and not making much of an effort to infuse a conversational tone much less passion into his voiceovers.

    You raise many good points on the inadequacy of the auto-levelling system (which does indeed rely on nothing more than randomization).

    I agree; the trouble, as you mentioned, is the time involved with this revision. Updating the stats of "generic" entities is fairly easy, but one must take extra care with unique entities where tag names, special inventory items, and so forth may be present. Another important step in resolving the problem would be to improve enemy AI (more widely ranging patrols, more concentration of firepower, better placement to utilize cover and concealment, etc).


  17. TwoEyedYum

    TwoEyedYum Naked Moose

    Jan 21, 2010
    Those 2 Hillary's quotes are exactly what i've heard from her.
    Well, it really made me think "What the hell was going right now?" Like Hillary warmly thanked me and then switched her personality to another, somewhat cold woman. I won't give much advice here...

    Maybe make a floating speech with something like "You didn't saved all hostages, please go and do whatever you can!" As she doesn't care for ghouls anyway, it seems fine for me that she'll refuse to talk until generators are OK, daughter and Felix saved. I don't remember if Felix MUST be alive for mission completing, if not then we need second debrief for Hillary. Activate click speech when Evita saved and Felix saved/died; all enemies in prison/generator building/townhall are killed; bombs should be defused too.

    About ghouls. I think Babs should be moved to "Hooker saving reward". She's somewhat special (was at least). Most ghoul recruits should be available if attack repelled with minimal casualities (and Elliot is alive). Dillon should be a special prize for saving gorgeous ass of Gorgi.

    "I tend to disagree" © RA comic
    In my current game Evita can be saved any way you like (no one actually tries to kill her when you enter building openly).
    Saving Gorgi is a little harder, but when you know where's zone which triggers Gorgi's guards attack on him, you just sneak up to them without problems.
    And Felix's saving is hardest for me. There's Leader and warrior on top of watchtower, both of them killed Felix before i managed to kill them in 9 of 10 tryouts.

    I think he would say some thankful words, and tell us that Mother needs time to recover. Then she should be available for recruiting at Bunker Four. I believe her stats should be really rewarding (like good direct melee damage bonus), as she isn't just ordinary Deathclaw after all.

    I had some plans for that in my mod already. The fact is that western border of map (starting point and Pneumatic Press) is too close to battlefield. I feel like we need some space further in that direction. Maybe even another bridge, so you can begin with Press and move counter-clockwise. This space also would allow safely moving on the other side of "electric trap" and lure robots into it.
    Btw, did you know that "death zone" used for this trap can heal?
    If i'd have more time, i'd like to give you modified version of Great Bend for you to accept it as part of initial Redux package. I'll inform you if i find time for this.
  18. Endocore

    Endocore Look, Ma! Two Heads!

    Mar 14, 2010


    Would you elaborate on what you mean when you write you feel Babs the ghoul is special? Do you mean she's endearing as a character, or rather perhaps she's the best of the ghoul recruits/the only worthwhile soldier, or something else?

    On the Georgi/Felix rescues, I typically make heavy use of sneaking. I find I'm usually able to place enough of my troops in a position on the prison rooftop to have a gun on each guard around Felix; for Georgi on the other hand the sneaking strategy is more difficult, since the Beastlords holding the ghoul are prompted to harm their hostage (as you noted) by a zone-based trigger rather than actual engagement. More generally, if each of us finds different parts of the map difficult then I believe that means things are moving in the right direction in terms of overall game balance.

    I'd be happy to take a look at your Great Bend map when you finish your changes. Did you find any use or other relevance for the Machine Press? I feel having such an interesting artwork and gadget on the map and making no use of such is a unfortunate missed opportunity in the original game (clearly Microforte had something in mind other than a "Terminator" homage, yet I know not what).


  19. 4too

    4too Vault Senior Citizen

    Apr 30, 2003
    Quincy Hostage Rescues

    Quincy Hostage Rescues

    Quincy is hostage city. Five rescues. No six!

    Finding the right 'tool' for a one or two shot kill seems to be one of four of the keys.

    Shot gun, wide kill zone, not the single, simple, answer.

    Pleasantly surprised by the lethal power of hand guns at their proper range.

    If got close enough, Eldora and Farsight could kill with one shot to the head, and Ann's rate of fire allows a second or third killing shot.

    Combo of hunting rifle and hand gun used through out Quincy.

    When leaders over lapping that extra movement point allowed more targeted shots.

    Sneak and darkness are two more quarters.

    Getting to the Brothel at sunrise made it difficult to save them all.

    Of course the fourth quarter is trying again (and again, and again) with that timely save game!

    May be bringing many Fallout 1 and 2 preconceptions to FOT.

    Max the Stats at the start, and earn as you burn for the extra levels necessary to pump up the Skills points.

    With this present character build, am greedy for books to raise skills. Macomb Library!

    Took the Thief Perk to boost Sneak and Lock Picking.

    Charisma 6 for PC and Eldora's 7 allows two leaders, can over lap and raise the whole squad's Agility.

    Sure hope I balance the grind for that next (and next) level between missions, so don't burn out before the end game!

  20. RasterOps

    RasterOps First time out of the vault

    Dec 19, 2003
    With regard to the articles on warfare, I read the first two completely through; quite well done, beyond I think, my meager writing skills. I perused all later articles; got lazy. I was however, expecting some sort of skill increase rather than just an EXP bonus. I could have missed a skill bonus. Makes me wonder if the PIPBoy could be used to track achievements ala Borderlands that would provide an EXP/Skill bonus...

    Some expansion thoughts...
    1. I sure would like a clock in the PIPBoy. I would like to know what the time of day is rather than speculate by the amount of light or length of my shadow... The FOT PIPBoy seems to be an afterthought, it is so disappointing and limited. Sometimes in missions, I even want to see the world map; this PIPBoy is kinda useless.
    2. Just because an NPC is now a BOS initiate does not mean they want to be there. What if one or more recruits decided at a particular skill level they had had enough, or were now capable enough to pursue their own personal agendas? The idea is that one or more squadies might escape while on a mission (in the players squad). If two squadies were scripted to do this they both might escape together at the same time. While both have ulterior motives, one may have dishonest, disreputable motivations while the other more personal reasons. The dishonest one might even dupe the other into leaving together. The honest one might later be found near death and beyond saving (or not) having been betrayed and abandoned.

      So, one or both of these might suddenly leave the squad during an active mission (not in transit, see exception below, item #3). Hell, they might even take the vehicle being used in the active mission. They would not return to any BOS base. This would occur sometime after the mission had started. The player would lose control of the deserter(s) and they will be removed from the squad. Once removed from the squad they are regarded as non-hostile by all parties. The computer would assume control with the intent of moving the deserter(s) to the exit grid, at which point they would leave the map.

      The reasons for their desertion may be for personal gain (just wealth), becoming a lieutenant of a gang, revenge upon their tribe or even their family, revenge upon a leader, finding their family, rescuing their family, protecting their tribe or even searching for a city or location that they have always dreamt about as a child from reading a tourism pamphlet... like Six Flags Over Texas. (The pamphlet might be found by the player.)

      Will the player be able to finish the mission without their teammate(s)? Will they ever see their teammate again? Will they seek revenge or chose to help? Will they find the AWOL squadie near death and beyond the aid of even the best medical treatment and stims? Will they then promise to complete the personal quest of the squadie or let him/her die an ignominious death? Will they heal the squadie then help him/her complete their personal mission? Will they search for and find the disreputable squadie and seek revenge plus whatever remains of the stash in the vehicle let alone the vehicle?

      Does the traitor have to be recruited by the player? Perhaps not but I would prefer that they go missing in the player squad, more fun that way. Anyway, there was a squad leader in Bunker Charlie (3rd base) I believe. This is where the first ex-raiders are seen. One is complaining about the squad leader. This squad leader could recruit the traitor and the entire squad go missing. The squad leader might be found later, dead. (Not sure how the squad is found: a new mission from the General explaining where the squad was supposed to have been and on what mission?). In this example, the ex-raiders might join with the traitor. A clue would be found as to where they went.

      So the player finishes the mission and may return directly to base. The missing squadie(s) will not be in the recruit pool.
    3. At some point could the player and his/her squad be captured? This could be an ambush in a random encounter. There might be a grenade, a flash-bang and then an overwhelming number of enemies closing in as the screen fades to black. The squad would awaken in individual cells in an unknown area. All of their equipment would be confiscated, including the PIPBoy. Perhaps one of the team might even be missing and found later killed, tortured to death. Perhaps another might be missing, the deserting lieutenant above. Most of the equipment will have been distributed amongst the captors. The leader will take the best and most of the loot. BOS money will be of no value to them but might be found locked in the leaders chest. Some might be found burnt as fuel for the fire. The player must find a way to escape and recover whatever equipment possible. Perhaps even take revenge upon the traitor.
    Killing civilians...
    I believe it is the reason we don't see children in FOT. Regardless, the whole concept is flawed. I am not making a moral judgment of any kind. Just that the methods don't work as designed! It is not enough to just be given a negative Karma.

    For instance, civilians stand and fight. Stoopid. I own two guns. I might fight a little where I thought it might help and I might be somewhat protected. But if overwhelmed, I am not going to "stand and fight". Civilians should be running and hiding, panicking. As it is, the player can advance slowly, or quickly through a town and kill each new civilian as encountered because they don't move or run (also true in random encounters, civs attacking deathclaws... okaaay).

    Once any negative action begins inside a town all civilians and guards should be alerted and begin their fight or flight script. ALL of them, especially government officials. Fleeing civilians and officials should make their way to the exit grid and be removed from the map. All guards should immediately converge upon the new threat, not "stand their ground" and politely wait to be killed, sigh. Neither civilian or guard need to be within weapons range to respond. They have eyes and ears. Civilians can take a peek around a corner then panic or run flailing their arms and screaming "Da BOS r attacking! Da BOS r attacking!". Yes, some might run to find a family member or save their personal possessions. But the majority will panic and run or hide (ever had a scorpion sneak up on you?). And panicking does not mean running right into the arms of the enemy, so sic. I have seen this so many times, in so many games and it is so lame. Even Hollywood sometimes gets this so wrong that I think I'm watching Mystery Science Theater 3000.

    So a player kills all civilians he can find in a town, fine. How many was that, 10, 20 perhaps? Was the town burned to the ground? Was it nuked off the face of the earth? Remember, these towns, etc are representations. 20 civilians does not a society make. Upon returning to the town several things should occur:
    • The representative civilian population should be completely restored.
    • If the mayor was killed a newly elected official will be in his/her place, if such exists.
    • Should the player return, immediately upon entering the map, the town will be alerted, immediately.
    • All guards will converge on the nearest point of defense.
    • All civilians will flee or take shelter.
    • Entrance areas will now be trapped.
    • Any and all BOS are no longer welcomed, they are enemies. If that does not lower a players rank I don't know what will.
    So killing citizens should have a high negative karma impact. Killing guards a higher negative karma hit. Killing officials an even higher negative karma hit. Killing all citizens (found) in a town (> 60% in current design, if above implemented > 20%) should be another more substantial negative karma hit.

    I do kinda have a problem with new initiates that start with high ranks as if they have been in the Brotherhood for years. After completing missions and the new initiates later completing their basic training they should be low ranked one or two ranks and perhaps in rare cases three ranks. They could have more skill levels but still be of low rank. All new initiates should start at the bottom. Only original BOS soldiers should have high ranks.

    So, the NPC skills are random? This is why in one play-through Stitch has a Barter Tag and another time he doesn't? His perception is now acceptable. Usually I replace him when another doctor when one becomes available but the recruit I chose, in this case Helen, has a Perception of 5, is level nine and has already chosen perks that I find hard to work with. So I no longer recruit Helen. I believe re-recruiting her at level 8 would be far more advantageous as I can then have control over her perks... I hope/think. I mean, if I dump Stitch at level 3 he stops gaining EXP right?

    I still find making an ideal team is somewhat difficult. When I role play I generally stick to warrior types. But I think, after the world is saved what will I do? Well, what skills do I have? Am I a bomb tech or a thief; perhaps a mechanic or scientist? So I may focus on multiple skills and perks accordingly. If I am not a bomb tech or thief then I must recruit one or both. I don't need a thief per se but a someone who can pick locks. There are few choices and the perks/skills of these characters give pause. A Heavy Gunner needs Strength, Perception and Agility (AP's) to effectively use their weapon. A bomb tech needs Strength, Perception and Agility to carry around all those traps, etc and not get blown up. A character that combines these means sacrifices must be made. Do I the player use the NPC perks to advance the Heavy Gun skill or the Traps skill? Is the strength sufficient to carry their armor, guns ammo and traps? Should I try creating a traps squadie from one that does not have the tag skill?

    As the player, must I pick up the slack and be those things that are outside my role playing model? A trap skill of 140 is barely acceptable in Preoria (?). I save and disarm. Sometimes the mine goes off and I reload, lame I know. (The reloading part I mean.) So at level 9 my traps squadie should chose the Crazy Bomber perk to nullify explosive mishaps. But this requires an INT of 6... I don't know. Maybe I'm just choosing the wrong perks at the wrong time or focusing too much on one aspect of an NPC, e.g. trying to improve their weapon skills in an attempt to overcome weapon limitations...

    Spear range
    I'm not sure what to make of this. I see javelins thrown considerable distances and think spears should have ranges greater than grenades. Then think about the ranges of pistols and think that might be too far. But why throw a spear if the enemy is within pistol range? Should thrown spear ranges be greater than grenades, perhaps even throwing knives?

    I have never recruited Deathclaws but in my last game considered using them as spear throwers. They have the strength to carry these heavy items and some have the throwing skill. Has anyone used a Deathclaw in this regard. Is the spear range even practical for throwing?