What would you guys like to see in a hypothetical Fallout game set in Colorado

Discussion in 'General Fallout Discussion' started by ElloinmorninJ, Jun 30, 2020.

  1. ElloinmorninJ

    ElloinmorninJ First time out of the vault

    54
    Jun 25, 2019
    So you’re saying cut the Enclave out? Sure. Maybe they could be some sort of...military descended organization? From one of the NORAD bases.
     
  2. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Vault Fossil

    Mar 16, 2013
    Yeah. Though they don't have to be necessarily directly millitary to be militarized, as an example one of the best armed groups in my campaign was a tribe that manufactured their own bullets and weapons, using slave labor to operate a large lead-mine and old world factory technology.

    Keep in mind that unless you deliberately set your story way earlier, if you're going for Fallout 2 to New Vegas time scale the Great War was a long time ago so a directly US Army faction sprouting out of the woodwork nearly 200 years after the bombs might come off as contrived or weird, and whilst you could connect it to the Enclave I've already said my piece about what I think of reusing them.

    Though alternatively, surviving US Army or National Guard would make for excellent power-grabbers in the time shortly after the Great War, so having some sort of millitary society that is descended from that history as a base makes perfect sense.
     
  3. ElloinmorninJ

    ElloinmorninJ First time out of the vault

    54
    Jun 25, 2019
    Hmm, question. What should be the Colorado “apex” predator. Should I use deathclaw or try and come up with something new
     
  4. Hardboiled Android

    Hardboiled Android A Smooth-Skin

    640
    Jun 7, 2015
    Siena Supermax Penetentiary



    Pre-War, Siena Supermax Penetentiary was America's toughest prison. It was called the "Alcatraz of the Rockies," and with good reason: perched as it is on a steep rocky plateau, accessible only by cable car or helicopter from the ground, the only way out of here for an enterprising prisoner would be to take quite the leap of faith. It was here at Siena that some of the worst criminals in the country were kept - serial killers, gang leaders and mafiosos, notorious bank robbers and jail breakers, the highest profile drug dealers. In addition, it housed prisoners of a different character - those terrorists (both foreign and domestic) and political dissidents that for whatever reason it would be too messy to just execute or disappear to one of the many government blacksites. In addition to this facility, there were no less then a dozen other facilities adjacent to the Super-Max for less notable felons. Together, these facilities made up just about the only employment for the citizens of the town of Siena and the communities surrounding it.

    Acme Algorithmics


    Boulder, Colorado

    Acme Algorithmics, a Boulder-based computer firm, was struggling throughout the mid-21st century. Though it had been living large off of its contract with Cheyenne Mountain to build, maintain, and update that facility's massive Super-Computer AI, years of shoddy work and malfunctions (once resulting in the accidental carpet bombing of a sleepy North Dakota town, that was quickly covered up as a reactor melt down), there was serious talk in the military about phasing out the AI that was mockingly called the "Calculator" on account of its outdated capabilities in favor of one of WestTek's ZAX models, or one of those newfangled RobCo Distributed Network Intelligences.

    While the War ensured that this would never come to pass, Acme realized that it could no longer rest on its laurels. In addition to a massive overhaul of the Calculator, Acme bid to be a contractor on the countless defense/futurist make-work programs that the government was rolling out in the latter half of the 21st century. The first of these was the Boulder Dome. It was a natural fit - after all, the Boulder Dome's research was to be done in close cooperation with the University of Boulder, which much of Acme's staff was hired from. And plus, it was, you know, right there. After going on a massive hiring spree and expanding its capacity beyond its limited Super Computers to all sorts of high scientific pursuits, it was outbid by RobCo.

    Beaten but not defeated, Acme attempted to gain a spot in developing some computing systems for Project: Safehouse. As part of its campaign to court the government and RobCo, it developed the friendly little Pep-Boy, designed to be Vault Boy's best pal and the humble Vault Dweller's guide to the confusing world of amateur-oriented computers. As part of the campaign, the character was plastered on restaurants across the region, in addition to Acme products. Vault-Tec was initially excited about the character, seeing the possibility of expanding its characters to sell comics, cereal, and perhaps even a Saturday morning cartoon. But RobCo just couldn't let them have that - in addition to outbidding Acme on the computer contract (alongside a number of smaller firms), they came up with their own suspiciously similar PIP-Boy character, who Vault-Tec loved even more - this was helped by the fact that he came along with RobCo's revolutionary PIP-Boy devices. A years-long legal battle ensued where (thanks to corruption) Acme lost all rights to the character. To add insult to injury, Vault-Tec and RobCo dispensed with the character entirely when the 3000 line rolled out. The character survived only in the surplus 2000 line that was used in the California region, and in those remnants that remained as roadside curios across eastern Colorado.



    Siena Supermax was Acme's last hail-mary. After a gumshoe from a notoriously lefty newspaper published a story on the inhumane conditions in Siena, even America's most conservative citizens were left somewhat unsettled. Hoping to put a good spin on the PR disaster, the government unrolled another futurist program to reform America's prisons, to create the "Prison of the Future" - a veritable panopticon to prevent any sort of agitation or riots (the US was having a lot of problems with those), but combined with a more humane approach that centered the possibility of rehabilitation. After all, the 22nd century was just around the corner!

    The Prison of the Future



    Acme leaped at the opportunity and, after a merger with the similarly benighted Greenway Hydroponics, called in every single favor and piece of blackmail it had to secure the rights to the prison. They won the contract along with Greenway Hydroponics of all companies. They were to compete with Poseidon's model prison at Tibbets Maximum Security Penitentiary for a contract to reform prisons across the nation.

    Acme expanded security using a number of robots (mostly RobCo models, unfortunately, though a few of its own as well), automated turrets, explosive collars, and 24/7 surveillance through its dedicated AI master. However, this system was different to most of the Super Computers built by Acme - it used its own version of RobCo's Distributed Network Intelligence in the form of the Zenith Neural Network By collating all data collected across all camera, microphones, and terminals (including the shoddy and malfunction-prone terminals that Acme sold at bargain rates to the citizens of Siena township) in a remarkably advanced cybernetic "brain", the system was able to maximize its efficiency and even able to some limited extent to learn in a manner analogous to human beings. They had to dig out titanic catacombs beneath the prison to fit it all, but it was worth it in the end. For this wouldn't just be the world's greatest prison warden - the data collected from its innovative structure could allow Acme's tech to leapfrog over the competition, and provide valuable insights for Derek Greenway's numerous pet projects.

    In addition to standard data collection methods, the prison's not rehabilitative facilities provided valuable observation points. Group therapy and individual computer moderated psychotherapy, community farms, even top of the line imperishable food to keep the prisoners reasonably happy. All of these combined to make America's toughest prison and its sister facilities rather nice places.
    However, there was another data collection method. The most dangerous and infamous of prisoners, cold blooded killers and unrepentant political terrorists, are hooked up to the cybernetic brain, and pumped for information: a thick metal needle is pierced into the temple. Along with strong X-Rays and magnetic fields, the brain of the criminal was scanned. The process let the prisoners essentially as lobotomites, devoid of anger and open to suggestion, such as "Obey the Law" - model inmates, and model rehabilitated prisoners. Occasionally, the brain would be removed entirely to allow for a more thorough analysis. The use of this was two-pronged: first, it provided more data then observing a prisoner play a Solitaire holotape ever could for Zenith. Second, it was demanded by the government as a secret condition of allowing Greenway in on the contract as a part of the ongoing mind control experiments and efforts to understand the brain of the criminal, the brain of the dissident, the brain of the communist. Acme's executives managed to keep this aspect of the project secret from Greenway himself, though he would end up using some of the data inadvertandly in the construction of DIANA.

    Despite the tremendous success of the project, it was not to last. When a newspaper ran a story on the lxuuries prisoners received during a time when many Americans were on ration cards, the senator in charge of the Unamerican Activities Force called a hearing. Acme's accusations that both the senator and the newspaper were bought-and-paid for by RobCo and Poseidon were, of course, wholly conjectural. Much hay was made of the luxuries enjoyed by the prisoners, in addition to the fact that the executives of Acme may have engaged in marihuana smoking during there time at the notoriously lefty University of Boulder. In the end, it was decided that Siena Supermax would be taken over by Poseidon, and that Acme would be liquidated, its properties and technologies divided between RobCo and the government.

    A team of UAF thugs alongside RobCo combat robots managed to seize Acme's headquarters in Boulder (albeit with several unfortunate murders of Acme employees by confused RobCo robots). The handover of Siena was scheduled for January 1st, 2078, giving time for Acme to remove itslef and phase in Poseidon. That opportunity would never come, of course.

    After the War



    For the first ten years, Siena and the surrounding prisons rode out the early days of the war relatively well. The Guards fled from their homes and into the deep catacombs beneath Siena and the surrounding prisons. Where there was space, the best-behaved prisoners were allowed to inhabit the catacombs as well. The thick concrete and lead lined walls of the main facility (it was designed to withstand a blast from a nuclear bomb in the worst-case-scenario jail break) proving surprisingly adept at keeping the prisoners safe, albeit imperfectly compared to the guards who lived below. Plus, the prisoners had to make the dangerous trip out to the hydroponics greenhouses on the prison grounds to feed themselves and the guards. Worst of all, the worst punishment for the prisoners was death ollowed by cannibalization in re-processed form by the guards. There were just too many prisoners in the several facilities to feed everyone, population was called for. Less serious crimes were met by a stint in the brain-pump, leaving the prisoner perfectly compliant and with no complaints about the extra limbs and chronic illnesses their outdoor labor demanded.

    The final straw for the prisoners was when in 2089 it was decided that radiation levels had gone down enough that the prisoners would be made to work full-scale outdoor farms. This was combined with the denial of a long-promised "meeting" between Siena's felons and the female inmates of one of its sister penitentiaries. Organized by a cabal of crime bosses, communists, and assorted domestic terrorists, the aid of some sympathetic guards and Acme-Greenway technicians was taken on to launch a revolution. Zenith had several subroutines simulating the amalgamated minds of its victims. The "Socialist" (which to be fair had a good number of total innocents in the mix) subroutine was allowed to escape from its containment and after a brief (by humans standards) war, it conquered much of system. Gates were open, robots deactivated, and guards (or "Pigs" as the prisoners called them) were caught with their pants down. A brutal frenzy of slaughter ensued, with those guards that were not killed, enslaved, or worse able to flee into the wilderness surrounding the facility.

    For a time, the facility was governed by the cabal alright, though with many compromises - the prisoners may have gotten to "meet" the female inmates (in addition to some less-then-willing wives that were taken from the guards), though it was still mandated that they would have to work outside. Still, things chugged along for five years, before an attempted coup by the crime bosses to unseat the pinkos resulted in a socialist victory, and the eviction of as much as half of the population, who would go on to form the motor-gangs of Pueblo.

    Today, the settlement is divided between "Siena", the upper citadel, and "Supermax", the lower prisons which have linked there thick walls. Siena-Supermax sees itself not as the prison of the future, but rather as the city of the future. Its automated robot servants provide for the every need of its residence, Zenith keeps things in perfect working order. There is no class or hierarchy in Siena, only brothers and sisters who wish to expand their enlightened way of life to the rest of the wastes, and show them the folly of the Boulder Dome which claims to be the city of the future. All Sienans wear snazzy futuristic jumpsuits, derived from their old prison jumpsuits. It even has the Wasteland's only licensed psychotherapist, Doctor Cuckoo.



    Of course, all is not as it seems - most of the inhabitants of Siena lack any technical ability whatsoever to maintain the system upon which their lifestyle depends. Though they know enough not to give Boulder Dome technicians full access to their system, they often rely on them for computer parts and minor trouble shooting from Boulderite technicians to keep the bare minimum running - and "bare minimum" is the operative phrase here. The system is only truly operative in the indomitable citadel of Siena itself. The lower prisons are largely agrarian, the few robots they have been rarely employed plow-bots that are prone to breakdown. Even in Siena itself, the systems often malfunction. Dress up the robots in as many fancy suits as you can scavenge, they're still guards, not butlers. Plus, Doc Cuckoo may not be giving the best advice.

    The only consistent means to keep the computer from breaking down entirely is by supplying it with a steady stream of victims to brain drain, both from Siena's many political dissidents and slaves sold by the Motor Gangs of Pueblo. Once drained, the victims are then cast out of the prison, creating the large population of so-called "Deadheads" that are found across Southern Colorado.
    It seems inevitable that the inhabitants of Supermax will have to turn to Boulder for help eventually, and at that point the Boulder Dome may finally have the solution to its perennial ZAX problems. But there are several groups who won't let the Boulderites have it without a fight...

    Adventure Hooks

    -Main story. The data stored at Siena is invaluable to several factions, for numerous reasons - Boulderites, the Legion, the Motor Gangs, the Paradise Pigs (descendants of exiled guards - "kicked out of Paradise"), Robot City.
    -Acme Algorithmics. Tantalizing connection ebtween the facility and Acme Headquarters (patrolled as it is by Sentry-Bots and Repo-Bots waiting for the new owners to move in) will be essential to completing some sidequests there, which may in turn be essential to some of Boulder's quest to repair its computer systems. IN addition, Acme products are a perennial appearance in Eastern colorado, and if you collect enough of these there are interesting interactions to be had both at Acme Headquarters and Siena.
    -Greenway Hydroponics. Connection to DIANA, the Nursery, and the Twin Mothers - and of course, Derek Greenway himself.
    -Cheyenne Mountain. Connected by Acme, who I'm positing as the creators of the Calculator.
    -A lot of potential quests with the Pep-Boy.
    -Robot City. Most people from beyond Colorado believe that Supermax is the fabled Robot City, including the Legion. Coloradans know better - to most of the survivalist communities, RObot City is something far more sinister then the hilariously mismanaged and isolated Supermax. Robot City is said to be located far beneath the earth, occasionaly sending out its mechanical feelers in the form of robotic killing machines and automated drones for unknown purposes. To the Sienans, it is considered nothing more then tribal superstition - after all, there are no societies more advanced then Supermax.
    -Poseidon. Related to above. As far as the remaining Poseidon AIs are concerned, the handover of Siena-Supermax is long past due. Link to Tibbets, ODYSSEUS/ULYSSES, and of course Greenway.
    -Labor disputes between Supermax and Siena, and the general political troubles that benight the Englightened City on the Hill.
    -Multiple Personality Disorder - there are several different subroutine personalities within Siena, all wishing to seize control, and the may be helped or hindered by the player in concert with the various faction interests. There's Zenith, the current socialist AI which needs major repairs and updates - after all, its designed to run a prison, not a centrally planned economy, who takes on the personality of an eccentric Continental philosopher. There's also Warden, the remannts of the original prison AI combined with the guards that were brain drained during the uprising, who seems like a mostly good natured middle american who wants to see justice done, if a little fascistic. Then there's Martini, the ammalgamation of various crime lords. Last of all, there's Norman Lee Gallagher - based largely off of one man, America's most notorious serial killer prior to the War, along with assorted psychos.
    -Though it takes the player to bring it to their attention, the Deadheads may make the ideal slaves, if they can be tamed and their dependency on their cyber-hives and techno-gangs are broken.
    -Doc Cuckooo really doesn't give good advice. Engage him in conversation about his more famous patients...
     
    • [Rad] [Rad] x 1
  5. Hardboiled Android

    Hardboiled Android A Smooth-Skin

    640
    Jun 7, 2015
    Whooowheee. That's just under 3,000 words in just over three hours. There might be some typos, inconsistencies, or dumb ideas in here, so feel free to point them out. Sorry for the wall of text, as I thought about it I just got more and more enamored with the concept. I managed (or at least I think I did) manage to tie it pretty seamlessly into the lore of Van Buren and Fallout in general, including what little has been established for this setting so far.

    In the first place, it was based on the real-life Florence Supermax Prison, and its adjoining facilities. In Florence IRL, some of America's worst criminals, along with terrorists both foreign and domestic, from one of the Tsarnaev brothers to one of the OK City bomber's accomplices to old Ted Kascznyski himself - and with Kaszynski involved, that gave me a little bit of the go-ahead to throw in a cyberpunk nightmare.

    Regardless, I figured Fallout's Florence (which I named Siena after another Tuscan center of the Renaissance) would be even rougher then ours, no doubt involving human experimentation. Plus, there would no doubt be a lot of political dissidents and socialists (and socialist terrorists, no doubt) thrown in alongside more genuine psychos. This element of class consciousness put a new spin on the old trope of the "Prison Revolt" or "Post Apocalyptic Prison-cum-Fortress."

    The concept of Acme was one I really enjoyed. Referenced only in Tactics as the maker of humanoid robots that the Calculator employed, I thought it would be interesting to show a down-pon-its luck company in a prominent role, comparable to FNV's RepConn which likewise gets driven into the ground by Mr. House, along with a number of other businesses on the New Vegas outskirts (H&H, New Vegas Steel, Big MT to a lesser extent, etc etc). I found the narrative of the struggle of the little guy mad scientists against the several giant megacorporations we all know and love (Vault-Tec, Poseidon, West-Tek, RobCo, General Atomics etc etc) are fighting the inevitable rise of a total American oligarchy/oligopoly to be a compelling one. Combine Acme's seeming ireelevance with its connection to the Calculator and the several AIs dotted about Colorado and its surrounding (ODYSSEUS/ULYSSES. Robot City, DIANA, Boulder Dome Zax) and it seems like Colorado, rather than Silicon valley, was at the forefront of computer development, and what would happen if one firm was trying to go a little outside the box in a desperate bid to survive?

    I found the Prison of the Future concept to be one perfect to Fallout's America, which is desperately yearning to be something like Star Trek (which in turn is the ultiamte expression fo the Americanist mid-century dream), a land of plenty, freedom and humanity, but its deeply fascist psychosis causes it to react with a crackdown the moment it inches towards that future.

    Plus with Zenith, I figured that a computer which needs to 'eat' brains to live is a pretty classic pulp b-movie concept that would be fitting in with Fallout. Plus, it gives an MKULTRA hook that I feel has been sadly overlooked in Fallout. And then, the concept of an all-poerful super advanced AI would be just about the only thing that could get a socialist society as envisioned in the midcentury to work, sort of comparable to the Chilean CyberSyn program. This in turn lends itself to a generic utopian socialism (no, these aren't "le epic communists" that pop up so often in *cough* certain fallout settings, they may not even call themselves socialists) that does, in fact, resemble Star Trek in aesthetic and aspiration - and with the realistic outcomes that such a society would produce without truly advanced technology.

    And finally, after I'd written so much, it seemed like this place had so much going on that it would be silly if it wasn't quite important to the main plot. But luckily, I think I managed to blend things pretty seamlessly, and even have a halfway decent indication of the direction of a "main story."

    Look at me, rambling again. Well hope you folks enjoyed yourselves. Catch you on later down the trail.

    NOTE: None of these pictures are mine, and one of them (the post-apocalyptic prison) actually came from Fallout: Lonestar.
     
  6. ElloinmorninJ

    ElloinmorninJ First time out of the vault

    54
    Jun 25, 2019
    Wow. Very nice work. I like the idea man
     
  7. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Vault Fossil

    Mar 16, 2013
    Great work. Really good pulp sci-fi feel, feels like an old Star Trek episode or one of those speculative sci-fi B-Movies. I like how you weaved a lot of the DNA of existing Fallout lore and Van Buren documents seamlessly into it too.

    If I was running another PnP campaign, I'd have to shamelessly steal it

    I'm guessing Robot City is the Calculator?
     
  8. ElloinmorninJ

    ElloinmorninJ First time out of the vault

    54
    Jun 25, 2019
    So, guys, here's a character idea I had (She's who I role-played in Fallout New Vegas, so I'm reusing here)

    Trisha Troy

    Trisha Troy is a young tribal girl from the Twin Lakes Tribe in Colorado. She was the daughter of Owen Troy, the chieftain of the tribe, and for Wasteland standards, she lived a relatively safe and sheltered life. Until the slaver raids began. Caesar's Legion captured Trisha, along with her younger brother, Alek, and many other members of her tribe. Taken back to Cortex outpost, the slaves were sorted out, and Trisha, regarded as extremely attractive, was put to use as the personal sex slave of Cassius of Lukachukai, the leader of Cortex.

    In my Fallout:NV playthrough she was freed and escaped to the Mojave, but I guess in this game you could be given the opportunity to free her and use her as a companion. She'd mostly specialize in melee weapons (spear, machetes, and clubs) although she isnt terrible with a small gun or rifle. She'd also have knowledge of many tribal remedies such as healing powder, and would be able to act as a guide.
     
  9. Hardboiled Android

    Hardboiled Android A Smooth-Skin

    640
    Jun 7, 2015
    Or something. I'm leaning towards "No", as I like the simplicity of NORAD as a bombed out ruin that is possibly inhabited by Reservation style ghouls (though I'm not totally sold on that concept) and maybe some remnants of the Acme Calculator (which I kind of like the concept of nerfing in counter to its super strength in Van Buren in favor of a different AI.)

    It's probably some other NORAD facility, maybe it was designed when it became clear that it would be impossible to totally retrofit Acme's outdated Calculator, which was so entwined with Cheyenne Mountain by that point. Like I said, this just seems to be based on the point that there is a lot of stuff going on with computers in Van Buren generally and Colorado specifically, I kind of like the idea that it was the Fallout world's silicon valley since we don't really see too much on computing in California. Over the course of the main story, it would become clear that the info in the various computer labs across the state are all tied into some grand conspiracy involving a Poseidon (or possibly RobCo, but probably Poseidon considering Tibbets) superomputer that was designed to direct America's automated forces.

    I'm picturing a command room full of the skeletons of generals, still in their uniforms, sitting at a big table in a Strangelove style room with a big computer enacting the last orders it ever received: Save America. How it interprets that with its programming is strange, combined that with Poseidon corporate interests (like destroying Greenway) and potential Enclave shenanigans and boy howdy do I think you have the makings of something good.
     
  10. The Dutch Ghost

    The Dutch Ghost Grouchy old man of NMA Moderator

    Jan 11, 2004
    I give you this, you have been putting a lot more effort in this than I have with my Fallout Texas idea or another current idea that involves the Boktai series.
    But I also have not put much time into my ideas because for on I have no idea on what I actually want to do with them.
    It is not as if I will ever be able to get a team of people together to actually make it.
     
  11. Dayglow Drifter

    Dayglow Drifter First time out of the vault

    43
    Sep 25, 2018
    This is what happened to me until finally culminating in a big obsession with tabletop gaming, even now it's still mainly fantasy stuff though. I haven't DMed anything that is able to scratch that Fallout itch.

    It's cool you are still doing that Fallout Texas thing, I remember discussing that with you ages ago with an old account.
     
  12. Atomic Postman

    Atomic Postman Vault Fossil

    Mar 16, 2013

    Allow me to introduce myself. I've got a Fallout PnP system called "Moribund World" which I posted over in the PnP forum. If you ever want to DM Fallout, I'm always going to be happy to shill my system and give advice/answer questions about it.
     
  13. The Dutch Ghost

    The Dutch Ghost Grouchy old man of NMA Moderator

    Jan 11, 2004
    It is something I genuinely want to do and I wish I had the concepts I have up to this level of detail (Background/History, details on structure and workings, prominent figures).
    I would like to have a design document that could be used for a video game adaptation or a PNP game setting.

    Best to discuss this somewhere else though.