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 fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?

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seanchinhengo

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PostSubject: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 2:46 am

Not too long ago I was sitting in front of my computer contemplating fallout 4's Dlc's. I had just finished another play through and was rolling a cigarette while listening to some blues, When a thought popped into my head. That thought being that in reality fallout 4 only had 2 real dlc's according to my own view: Nuka world and Far Harbor.
(They at least had some storytelling and added to the narrative of fallout 4.)

I was strolling through forums and reddit seeing if anybody else agreed with me when I came upon a poster saying that in comparison, fallout 3 had the best dlc's.
Witch of course made me think about Fallout New Vegas as I always considered the dlc's in that game to be one of the best in the series(that being a personal opinion mind you).
As I puffed on my cigarette wondering about the stories that the New Vegas Dlc were telling me. I came upon a reoccurring theme. That of regret, nostalgia and saying goodbye, all of this flavored with a strange hopeful feeling for the future.
Taking the Dlc separately and together this narrative, this idea of letting go seems to reverb quite strongly to me.

Starting from Dead Money the first in the line we get a very clear picture.
All the characters that drive the story beginning with Elijah right up to Dean domino can't let go of the past and this drives their motivation and their obsessions.
It is only by the actions of the courier that some of them finally Let Go of their own obsessions
and Begin Again.

The same with Honest Hearts, in Joshua Graham we have a character who is haunted and chained to his own past actions, always reminded of them by the scars on his body(witch are a physical reminder of the scars of his past). In a way he seeks redemption and forgiveness for what he has done but he still can't let go of the man he once was.
Still he can be persuaded to let go of his fury and brutal merciless ways by the words of the courier allowing him to let go.
Even the minor and in a way unseen character of the survivalist carries a same obsession with the past and only finally lets go through his deeds towards the sorrows.

In Old world blues the Think-tank seems to still live as if it's still prewar America. they speak of communism in present terms and can't seem to free themselves from their past.
The final message of the Dlc speaks very clearly about old world blues how it's a sort of maudlin feeling, a nostalgia towards the past.
And that a new meaning must giving towards to these words, one of looking towards the future with hope.

And finally we have Ulysses in Lonesome Road A man obsessed with the past, both of the events occurring in Hopeville and of the history of the long dead Commonwealth of America. He paints himself both in the flag of America and the signs he found in Hopeville, he renamed himself Ulysses after the great general of the Union. And finally commits himself towards destroying the courier. He is so stuck in the past that he would die to achieve these plans.
And once again he can only be freed by letting go by the actions of the courier.

These sentiments seem to be part of every Dlc and the underlying theme that binds them all together.  And I wondered if Obsidian studio's was trying to tell people something.
As most of you no doubt know Obsidian studio's has allot of former members of Black isle studio's containing in their ranks the original creators of fallout franchise.
To them fallout isn't something they bought but rather one of their original creations filled with allot of nostalgic and sentimental value. Not only for them but all of the original fans of fallout 1 and 2. A creation they had say goodbye to when Black isle studios collapsed leaving an unfinished legacy behind, there would be no fallout 3.
When bethesda got the licening rights to fallout no doubt allot of them couldn't really let it go. after all though the newest installment was called fallout 3 in a way it was fallout one, bethesda's first fallout.

Fallout 3 is A great game but it isn't the fallout they remember.It takes place in a very different world and it seemed writing wise to take quite a few liberties with the lore and storytelling style.
Still It was a new fallout, And a lot of people were happy (including me as it was my introduction to the world of fallout).

When Obsidian got the chance to make a new fallout game I feel they took this moment to delve deep into the nostalgia and love they had for the original game. Filling it with factions, characters, stories and writing style that fell far more in line with the original lore that many of them had originally worked on or were inspired by.

Fallout new vegas is a love letter to the original fallout's an nostalgic well written chapter that pays an homage to the original games while still retaining a flavor of the new fallout series. It's an amzing game and speaks verry clearly of the writing talent of the staff considering they had only a third of the time bethesda had to write such a story.
Still the writing seems to truly shine with the dlc's(having more time i suppose).
And through these Dlc's they are trying to tell us that being stuck in the past and continually looking back and hanging on to the original games and regretting what could have been is bad both for us and for them.
They have grown, changed and fallout now belongs to the world and bethesda.
They can keep on living in the past or try to move on.
In a way they are saying goodbye to something they created years ago and that they are looking towards the future in hope.

Obsidian Studio's is telling us to Let go And Begin Again.

Well just a thought really, well time roll another cigarette.
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PostSubject: Re: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 8:36 am

Well ,we cant do nothing much .I feel like Fallout 3 and 4 were just some kind of prototypes .You know just made to be sold .The wider the audience they were aiming for the worse the game is .
Also once you know where all the money the AAA gaming industry gets it from ,it starts to make sense why they do such things.
Fallout 3 was the first one that I managed to play .So it was awesome ,but looking back on the previous fallouts ...it was meh .
Anyway you have a point ,Begin again .But i still cant play FO4 ,cant get over the voiced characer . invisible holstered weapons ,and the emptiness of the world .
Sometimes I wish FO4 was made just with the upgraded engine and everything else stayed the same.But that just my opinion .
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PostSubject: Re: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 8:53 am

@seanchinhengo

Your conclusion doesn't do your analysis justice: You crystallized a recurring theme in Fallout: NV and then you restricted the scope or realm of application of said theme to the very small area of the development of that game. Do you really think that they wrote those stories based on their relationship to the Fallout-franchise?
I very much doubt that and think that this central theme claims to say something much more general about us: Not being able to let go, not wanting for something to be over, being stuck in the past - those are problems with an anthropological scope, they concern us as human beings.
Sure, not accepting a new take on Fallout and always comparing to the first installments of the series is an example for a problematic relationship to the past. But it's a very specific one and I think that solely commiting one's interpretation of the narratives to it, depletes or impoverishes this theme.
Other than that, I like what you wrote.
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PostSubject: Re: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:17 am

@"shadowshade"

Your right of course perhaps my conclusion was a bit too narrow,
when speaking about such things as humanity's tendency to be stuck in the past to always look back. It's a problem or rather a habit that strikes us as a people on a much larger scale than simply in the development of a game.
It's a universal issue one that can often cause us to remain stuck in place and even seek to bring that past back at the cost of the present.
It was the connections with the series relations toward the developers and it's past towards the franchise that simply made me wonder that this is why they chose this theme.
It was merely a thought that popped in my head and I should have worked out my conclusion more broadly and in dept.
Thanks for replying and making me widen my gaze.
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PostSubject: Re: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:14 pm

Wow really deep seanchinhengo, you make a very valid argument when you put it the way you paint it. Really hard to disagree. Also that makes me kinda sad. Great post +1 for the hypothesis
But on the flip side shadowshade also makes sense about the fans which isn't as sad. Without any team members coming out and saying what is correct we will just have to decide for ourselves what they were telling us in their story. Great posts really eye opening

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PostSubject: Re: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 9:15 pm

@"Hoppyhead" thanks for reading my post there. In the end it comes down too the developers to have the final word on this particular topic. I do believe shadowshade has a valid point as well but we can't say for sure whether which one of us is right.
In the end I personally feel rather sad about the new route the series has gone.
The mechanics of a great game can be found in fallout 4.
Which makes it worse I think, the bones are there but the meat is missing.
I hope at least that given time perhaps fallout will have better writing and story.
Still life goes on and all that.
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PostSubject: Re: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:19 pm

I think everyone within Obsidian knew that this was their last shout with the series. Knowing Chris Avellone I wouldn't be surprised if this meta-narrative was deliberate.

I agree with shadowshade that there is a more universal point being made by New Vegas, where its moral lies towards always looking ahead to the future no matter humanity's setbacks, but that doesn't mean those themes don't lead into a discussion of the Fallout series itself. Introspection happens all the time in art (seriously, watch any Orson Welles film. They all revolve around him in some way).

You're probably right about New Vegas's message, that Fallout itself will be reduced to a consumerist zombie of itself, constantly vomiting out Vaultsuit-wearing, Dogmeat-accompanied super mutant/ghoul/enclave fighting protagonists searching for water/geck/family mcguffins. But you know what, so what? The fans still exist and that's what matters. Mods are still being made for New Vegas years after its release. Hell, a semi-sequel of Fallout was made by fans recently. There's still enjoyment to be had from this post-apocalyptic setting, even if the official titles grow stale. New Vegas just showed us that that setting has so much more potential than it was originally given credit for.

Gonna be honest...not really sure where I was going with that. You made good points though.

Also, someone argued that the DLC in Fallout 3 were better than those in New Vegas? Like...the one with the aliens? Wow...I'm not gonna say outright that whoever wrote that suffers from cognitive dissonance but I'm certainly gonna infer it. Yeesh...

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PostSubject: Re: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:46 pm

Visible Earth wrote:
Also, someone argued that the DLC in Fallout 3 were better than those in New Vegas? Like...the one with the aliens? Wow...I'm not gonna say outright that whoever wrote that suffers from cognitive dissonance but I'm certainly gonna infer it. Yeesh...

So you're also inferring your opinion to be fact? Not trying to be rude here but there are the silent majority of Fallout fans that consider Fallout 3's DLC to be better than New Vegas's DLC. Not that I am one myself, I personally think collectively that New Vegas's DLC was better, but individually DLCs like The Pitt or Broken Steel knock Honest Hearts and Dead Money out of the park, but hey...opinions are opinions.

Also, to OP, despite me thinking you're looking into the story too deeply, I too think that this is a fairly detailed theory. It might be so, but after all I think it is just coincidence after all. If anything it just points out the inability of Obsidian to think up new characters.

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PostSubject: Re: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 10:52 pm

Corvo wrote:
there are the silent majority of Fallout fans

I love it when people quote Richard Nixon.

Also, a bit of a flawed reasoning. I could easily just retort with Honest Hearts and Dead Money are vastly superior to Point Lookout and Mothership Zeta. Yeah opinions are opinions but that doesn't make them right. There's a reason why critics are a thing, and no amount of "the exploration's better" is going to make me think that the two dimensional stories in Broken Steel and The Pitt are better than the stories and world of Dead Money.

Whatever...I'm not going to argue with someone who has a Bethesda avatar (and Bethesda-published signature) and uses phrases like "the magical majority in my head agree with me, so I'm right."

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PostSubject: Re: fallout Newvegas dlc: A message from Obsidian Studio's?   Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:40 pm

Visible Earth wrote:
Also, a bit of a flawed reasoning. I could easily just retort with Honest Hearts and Dead Money are vastly superior to Point Lookout and Mothership Zeta. Yeah opinions are opinions but that doesn't make them right. There's a reason why critics are a thing, and no amount of "the exploration's better" is going to make me think that the two dimensional stories in Broken Steel and The Pitt are better than the stories and world of Dead Money.

I never directly tried to impose my opinion on you or anybody else, and neither did I use my opinion as a point against you. That would make me look a little bit hypocritical, yes?

What? Opinions can be disproved if somebody is ill-informed or has false points, not if they just have a different opinion to you. Granted there are critics that critique a game and judge it for it's strong and weak points but there are also a lot of critics out there that think Fallout 3 or Fallout 4 is better than New Vegas. Should they be considered less of a critic because they challenged the vocal minority? Are their opinions invalidated by the opinions of others? Is the minority bandwagon strong enough to carve their "facts" into stone? Sure there are weak points in Broken Steel and The Pitt and thus they should be judged fairly for that, and many critics do judge them for that, but as you said yourself the exploration is better, and thats what holds Honest Hearts and Dead Money from being better so than those DLCs in the eyes of many, including myself. If you believe that all the DLC is judged on is it's story and not it's worldspace, then you're strongly mistaken.

Visible Earth wrote:
Whatever...I'm not going to argue with someone who has a Bethesda avatar (and Bethesda-published signature) and uses phrases like "the magical majority in my head agree with me, so I'm right."

Simply put if your point against me is my avatar and signature it proves you have no more points to use against me. If I had an Pillars of the Eternity or Alpha Protocol sig and avatar would that make my points against you any stronger?

Also, the "magical majority in my head" clearly has power in real life too, being that Fallout 4 sold more copies than Fallout New Vegas did, and so did Skyrim for that matter of fact. The "magical majority in my head" also never awarded New Vegas the GOTY 2010 awards and titles because it was too similar to Fallout 3. Fallout 3 got GOTY though, didn't it? Oh, that's right....

EDIT: Also, I never said I was correct with my opinions on the games but I did say that it is pretty much a fact by this point that people that fantasize and romanticize the nostalgia of New Vegas while hating on the Bethesda games are the minority, and by default, are quite delusional in their thinking.

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