So I decided to look at Fallout 4 again and watch the beginning intro.
- I also jumped into a survival mode play through recently and I'm almost done with all the side quests, companion perks, and magazines. I will soon take the next step by killing kellogg, finishing the main quests and faction quests and then do the DLCs. Maybe even reach level 286 or so for maxing out all perks. But…. this is besides the point of my post.
To go even more in depth with the intro where the narration mentions, "People woke from the American dream…".
What is interesting is that after WW2 America during the 1950s was considered a sort of a Golden Age. In fictional movies and stories up until the year 2000 or so it was portrayed as this wonderful place. Albeit movies like Back to the Future or American Graffiti. There wasn't really strife or war within the confines of the US states. That is if you lived in middle America in the suburbs and existed only on that show "Leave it to Beaver." What happens in Fallout is that people lived that American Dream or concept or unrelenting happy go lucky advertisement for over 100 years.
And then "people woke from the American dream…" The surmounting issues told in the years leading up to 2077 in the Fallout world was atrocious.
And it is shown in a variety of ways in Fallout 4. One of the things that was included in the game was terminals. Terminal entries that were not meant to be seen, but also used to tell a story of what happened in the days leading up to Oct. 23rd of that same year the bombs fell. What Fallout 4 does well is the world building. Credited to Bethesda's ability to build that world and create stories within it. (something of a design choice that leaves the main story to be a bit lean by comparison.)
One particular terminal entry is of a co-worker wanting to stab his secretary with a pencil. Paraphrasing of course, but it essentially colors a decent picture of the world you leave behind. The picture perfect persona of the dream life Nate and Nora has is shattered in a not so perfect world. Its the tragic loss of the most valued things in this world lost by collateral damage.
Bad things happen to good people because of the carnal nature of men and Nate and Nora's life gets swept away by the ultimate sum of all fears. Nuclear Annihilation. All because people forgot why they were given that American Dream, that chance to start over and make things right. Instead things they should value the most are forgotten and in its place, are consumed by corporate greed and corporate wars, hunger for technology and discovery at the cost of human lives, and the blood lust of a never ending war between countries. The people of the world were literally tearing each other apart.
I think most of what is written above can be contributed to the Fallout universe in itself and what it has built with its games up to this point. Even the lore in fallout 76 has some great tidbits, despite its reception with its audience. Me included. I would leave the rest to Many A True Nerd in his video to tell about Fallout 4 itself.
In retrospect I am taking a 2nd look at the game and this usually defeats the purpose of a story driven dialogue amongst my fellow redditors because usually its that first playthrough experience that matters. Since that was ages ago for me back in 2015 when the game was released, I have added what I have written up on the Youtube video found here
Credit to Many A True Nerd.
It sort of inspired me to write everything you see in this post above and below the link.
In the beginning scene we are given the "everything is cheery and dandy, but nothing really happening yet. This is a perfect place to start and here is why.
Things have been progressing in other parts of the world, but not necessarily in your own neighborhood. Sure that vault tec guy has been ringing your doorbell for the past week, but other than that, in a suburb you are pretty much away from most of the horrors of your day.
You hear things on the news constantly, whether feed corporate propaganda or fake news, regardless you are pretty much living in a bubble away from all that. And you are living what is considered "The American Dream." A house, a war veteran possibly getting a nice paycheck for his military service and a wife with a college education, a baby boy. As newly parents life is good within these walls of this home. However, this is the perfect setup for what I would call, "The calm before the storm." Or as Gandalf in LOTR would call it, "The deep breath before the plunge."
And with great reluctance the SS opens the door to the Vault-Tec salesman. We finally face the world. A world filled with chaos. Although the vault-tec guy is nice and handles the cliques of a sales rep very nicely without cause for concern, he amps up the foreboding feeling that something in the story might go wrong, and soon. Sign up for your placement into a local vault to avoid atomic annihilation. Unknowingly Nate and Nora save their family and at the last minute.
This story told thus far is somewhat rushed for the sake of the rest of the story on the other side of that bomb dropping. We really want to start playing. But it gives us ample time to setup the characters, who they are, establishing the world in a compelling way that doesn't ruin the exposition too much.
A 2nd look at the story might feel tired because you've experienced this already. In which case the first playthrough is really the only one that should enjoy the game to the fullest, but with the explanation in the video and here you can clearly see how the story is being constructed thus far and how good it actually is. Its well thought out up to this point.
But the main story doesn't stop being good here. It gives you a main story that drives you to completion. That hook in a story that compels you to find your son, take revenge on the kidnapper, and then continue to seek him out. This makes the game out to be a very good single player linear story.
However since this game is an open world with 1000s (embellishment whenever you can ;)) of side quests you feel like you might miss out on something else in the game. And as soon as you step away from this involving storyline your immersion breaks a little and you start to experience other stories in the game. This is where players might feel they were cheated, but in fact Fallout 4 just gave you a much better story than its predecessors by simply pulling you into the story.
Did you get hooked and wanted to finish the main story before doing other things? If you answered yes then you are part of the group of players where this might apply.
But still even if you pulled away from the main story to check out other things, (which i did at some point before finishing on my 1st PlayT) you really get a sense of how fantastic this game really is. And the world building is one of the best things about this game. Not to mention the superior combat system compared to previous games. The perk system and the different combinations of builds you can apply will keep you replaying this game. Even to this day in 2020, players new and old still play it. (I even want to go back and play another round of all the fallout games back to back. (except for one. We dont speak its name here.)
Sorry for this long post, I suppose in conclusion I hope what I wrote enlightens you and possibly helps you enjoy the game a little more by going a bit more in depth with the beginning of the game and how well written it is.
I wasn't going to mention any drawbacks this game has since I wanted it to be a solid post on one particular subject. However, I will mention here, because of the increased focus on the open world I do believe the main story isn't given as much attention toward the end of the game. This is mostly due to the complex faction system that exists in each Fallout game and not every faction path is fully fleshed out.
Thanks for reading if you got this far. I do hope you enjoy what I've read and enjoy Fallout 4 as much as I have over the years. Just remember one thing, "War… War never changes." But hopefully if you didn't like the game before, you like it a little more now and "changed" your mind.
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