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Fallout: The Search for the Fountain of Youth

Fallout: The Search for the Fountain of Youth

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Project Blog by darkdanegan Cult of Games Member

Recommendations: 57

About the Project

This is my attempt to create a Fallout video-game type experience, by playing Fallout Wasteland Warfare. An epic open-world adventure with character development, settlement building, and a branching quest line. I haven't entirely figured out how I'm going to do it all yet, but I'll document the process of preparation, planning and then the campaign itself. [Click the "View Oldest Entries First" button below if you want to read in order from the start!]

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Terminal Velocity

Tutoring 3
Skill 3
Idea 3
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Terminal Velocity

A huge part of the Fallout video games are terminals. You hack them to access various gameplay actions, such as opening doors, controlling defence systems, or to glean nuggets of lore.

Terminal Velocity

I thought it would be a pretty cool way to tell some of the story of my campaign in an in-game style, so I’ve been playing around with Google Docs to let me do just that.
By photographing my own computer screen, I think I’ve got something that fits the theme.

Terminal Velocity

Robots!

Tutoring 4
Skill 4
Idea 4
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Next up, robots!Next up, robots!
Robots!
Robots!

Robots and their Mechanist master should make for some interesting encounters. In Fallout it is common that the allegiance of robots can be changed using computer terminals, so there are a multitude of possible scenarios where the robots are friend, foe, or a combination of the two!

Prepping (for the nuclear holocaust)

Tutoring 4
Skill 4
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Like every good prepper, I don’t want to enter the post-apocalyptic nightmare of the post-nuclear war world without being ready. One of my learnings from my 5 Parsecs campaign is that if you have too much to do in between missions, that can lead to large gaps in progress. I recently rolled an enemy consisting of 9 “punks”. That took some work to find, build and paint the models, and led to lots of opportunities for distraction!

Having said that, I have so many unbuilt and unpainted Fallout models that if I wanted to wait until they were all painted before starting the campaign…well…it would never get started. But I want to make it as easy as possible.

First bit of prep is consolidating all the cards and tokens into one place. I bought this accessory from Folded Space some months (years?) ago and finally got round to installing it. It turns the original game box into a full storage solution. Worked a treat!

There’s still a bit of campaign prep to do, including working out what the starting conditions will be, but as is the way with Fallout it’s likely it’ll start by emerging from a vault, which gives me a bit of focus in terms of determining what models I need to prioritise to give me options in the early game. Vault dwellers!

Prepping (for the nuclear holocaust)

Another element of prep is getting all the various scenario documents, expansions etc organised. One of the downsides of the Covid-19 pandemic was that it severely impacted the distribution of physical product. But the legends at Modiphius kept the content coming via PDFs. I lost track a little bit, but with the aid of an online printing company, I’m getting everything spiral bound and ready to use as a menu for the campaign.

Prepping (for the nuclear holocaust)
The power armour is unlikely to be required immediately but the vault personnel will be involved. But will they be friend or foe?The power armour is unlikely to be required immediately but the vault personnel will be involved. But will they be friend or foe?

Creating the Map

Tutoring 3
Skill 3
Idea 3
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Creating the Map

The must-have tool for any vault-dweller-turned-wasteland-explorer is a device called a Pip-Boy.  Essentially a wrist-mounted computer that serves as your in-game inventory/quest/map manager among other things.

I don’t think I am going to go too mad recreating all of the screens, because that would be a crazy undertaking, but I do want to have a map reveal and exploration experience that is similar.

So with the aid of Snazzymaps.com I’ve created a pip-boy style map for my location.  I’ve got one with the real-world place names on, and one without.  The one without the locations is going to be the one I’ll use – as mentioned I really want to explore and discover, unbiased by knowing what’s where.  I will need the locations to refer to as I move around the map. That will also allow me to research a new area and try to bring some real-world influence to the locations. I just want to try to avoid knowing too much about a location in advance.

This one will be tucked away until needed.  I may even try to find a way to cover it up and reveal the place names as I journey around the map.This one will be tucked away until needed. I may even try to find a way to cover it up and reveal the place names as I journey around the map.
The best part of any Fallout adventure - a blank map! An open-world wasteland ready to be explored!The best part of any Fallout adventure - a blank map! An open-world wasteland ready to be explored!

Gaming in the Gaps

Tutoring 3
Skill 3
Idea 3
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The first point of order is to decide where to set my campaign.  I don’t want to get too exotic, because I want to stay true to the model range and setting of the miniatures game.  It needs to be believable that the characters and factions would be present where I am.  But I also want to be able to discover things as I encounter them and not be limited by a location that is already covered.  So, to make @Warzan proud, I’m gaming in the gaps.  Someone online made a map showing the locations of all the existing Fallout games.  And I’ve found my gap.  The Cincinnati region around the Kentucky/Ohio border!

Gaming in the Gaps

The Inspiration

Tutoring 2
Skill 2
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I love Fallout.  I mean, I reeeeealllyyy love Fallout.  Interestingly, it was the announcement of the miniatures game by Modiphius, in what must have been 2016 or 2017, that turned me onto the franchise (miniatures tend to do that to me!).  I decided to try one of the video games while I waited for the miniatures game to be released, and on the advice of my brother (who had played them all) New Vegas was probably the best, so if I was going to play only one – that would be the choice.  I did start there, and by golly did I enjoy it!  I finished it before the miniatures game released, then proceeded to binge Fallout 3, Fallout 76 and then Fallout 4.

Now I’m faced with a long wait until the next video game, and that is quite depressing.  BUT we do have the miniatures game, and I’ve been a fan right from the very start.  I was even at the launch party in London in August 2018.

Here's me and my bro enjoying a demo game and a beer at Modiphius/Bethesda launch party in August 2018Here's me and my bro enjoying a demo game and a beer at Modiphius/Bethesda launch party in August 2018

The game is fantastic, and it’s gone from strength to strength since its release.  So much so that its grown a few arms and legs since its launch and I must admit I neglected it for a few months and now I need to get caught up.  So part of this project will be getting myself back organised, getting game ready, and getting more minis on the painting table. Oh and buying the releases that I’ve missed 😉

Mainly though, I want to create a tabletop experience that is as close to a traditional Fallout RPG open-world adventure experience as possible.  The game system can totally handle it, I don’t think I’ll need to add much in the way of “rules” to link all the parts together to create the experience.  I’ve been playing Five Parsecs from Home recently, and have learned a lot from that about procedurally generated campaign development.  The tabletop battles in Five Parsecs are quite simple, Fallout is a much chunkier experience, so I’m really excited to get started!

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