Boulder design document/3
|The following is based on Van Buren and has not been confirmed by canon sources.|
|The following is the original document or a transcript thereof.|
Cast of Characters
Scientists: Condescending, very smart. Originally 8-10, but now only 6 since some didn't make it all the way here. Have a rigid existence since they have to work hard to keep the dome from falling apart. But they only know theory, not application, so while they know the problem, they lack the skills to fix it. They hate and fear the soldiers, and pretty much ignore the truckers. They may have told the soldiers that the "infection" has spread from the lower levels in order to keep the soldiers from trying to get in.
Soldiers aka "Baggers": came out with Goddard. Bored in Denver. Because of the glowing ghouls, got addicted to RadAway. They hate the scientists, ignore the truckers (except Helen, since she's female, but Galenski set them straight on messing with her). They don't like being called deserters, and they'll be violent and insulting to those who claim they deserted. They boil their meals in their helmets and may have been eating radioactive meat. That may be why ZAX may have suggested to Goddard to lock them out ... ZAX's first priority is to the Calculation and to protect the people in the Dome.
Truckers: Galenski, Helen, and their six kids they picked up. They wait around, help the scientists fix stuff when they can, and used to go to rendezvous points to pick up or drop off the soldiers. They don't care much for the scientists or the soldiers, but living in the dome is better than being outside. Galenski wants to set up trade, and has started to with Denver. The kids are sick and the sci's are wasting time trying to cure them. If the kids were cured, the sci's could work on other things and Galenski & Helen could work more on establishing a trade route.
Level 4, good at Science, Driving, and guns.
Born in New Adytum. Learned about cars (born in a car). Beautiful. Educated by the FOA. Fell in love with Pierce. Former jet addict. Wanted by NCR for hijacking, she was helping Pierce hijack it for drugs. Agreed to be a caravan driver to smuggle the grad students to Boulder. Fell in with Eddie, mainly because of his truck and because he loves her kids. If she sees the PC as a protector, she'll glom onto him.
If she finds a stupid PC, she'll bring them in because her mother trait kicks in.
Level 8, combat. A bad person in a bad situation. Almost sympathetic. Broken Geiger counter. 10 mm pistol. 7 shells. 1 radaway. Radio. Leather armor (NCR uniform). Frag grenade, hunting rifle. Dog tags. Succumbing to radiation poisoning and radaway addiction ("seeing red," from the addiction). Has 12 men with him, with decent weapons. Had a criminal past (smuggling drugs) and didn't like NCR but joined the military for a paycheck. No family so he's attached to his unit. He used to guide technicians on repair and salvage ops, which he liked. Got transferred to guard duty at the capital, which he didn't like. Arrogant. Hates college kids. Always hated Goddard. Served with Davidson once or twice. IF someone steals his Geiger counter and radaway, he freaks out and starts killing his own men, thinking they did it. He and his men need food and Radaway. He and his guys even tried eating ghouls after taking radaway, it's making them sick and anemic.
Jackal leader. Strong, perceptive, tough. Leather armor, spear, combat knives, spiked knuckles. Melee/unarmed/outdoorsman. Looks more sinewy than bulky. He's going bald and he doesn't know why, maybe he ate something bad. Takes it out on his wife and kids. Killed his previous wife for accidentally burning his hair.
Tough, agile. Leather armor, crossbow, machete. Melee/firearms/outdoorsman/sneak. Well-respected for his hunting skills. He's the one who tracked Galenski to this position. Likes to do called shots to the legs to bring opponents down.
This character can be cut if it's too many for this area.
Jackals/Crazy Bitch (Daughter of Hecate)
Knife, broc flower (2), xander root (2), healing powder, poison, robes. 6's in all stats. Melee/medicine/outdoorsman. Knife specialist (bonus with knives). Immune to poison. Has a bag of unknown unsorted drugs from a raid in another town. In disgrace, Mother Hecate all but ignores her. Looking for a way to redeem herself in Hecate's eyes. The camp whore, letting the men sleep with her and enjoying them fighting over her. Egotistical, rough and crude in dealing with others (prefers to beat them over the head than be subtle). Hates the NCR soldiers. Looks Mexcan.
Trucker/Eddie Galenski (Combat 5/Sci1/Dip1)
Trucker, part of the escort that brought the grad students here. With Helen, takes care of the kids. Good at melee, unarmed, and guns. Decent at bartering. High Str and End. A big, friendly redneck that can go ballistic in a second. He used to hijack caravans out in NCR; used to be a not-nice guy but has mellowed out. Sterile because of the Blue Flu, but he thinks it's because of his radiation poisoning. Alcoholic. Never got over his first wife. Currently held hostage by Pierce and Presper's soldiers; Pierce is irritated that his own kids (whom he doesn't care about) call Eddie "Dad." Workaholic, but tends to sell stuff too soon when holding onto it would mean more profit later. Hates trains. Grew up an abandoned kid near Junktown. Can do basic math but can't read. Used to work with some caravan hijackers paid to push caravans to either join the Crimson Caravans or fall apart. Has a space suit as part of his gear.
Stuff he's stashed in recent travels (he may have more in caches to the west, but it'll take him time to get stuff from them and he needs the truck for it to work):
- doctor's bag
- gas masks (3)
- spent shell casing
- pulse grenade
- tool kit
- mechanics book
- medicine books
- science books
- fire axe
- first aid kit
- first aid manual
- geiger counter
- leather jacket
- Nuka-Cola (10)
- pipes (for pipe rifles)
- radios (3)
- broken radios (2)
- rubber boots (3 sets)
- Scout Handbook (Outdoorsman)
- Broken shotgun
- SEC (expended)
Tall, stiff-looking. Bald. Never smiles.
Always deadly serious about everything.
Bitter, cynical, and vengeful ever since they became trapped in their suits. He blames Presper.
Used follicle-stripping salve on his head, normally used to prepare soldiers for surgery or for live-feed CODE helmets. Physics & computers are his skills.
Computer login: Sisyphus.
Loses his temper when people don't do exactly what he tells them to do.
Knows how to make fuel. Knows how to make ROCKET fuel.
"Presper wants you dead, and that is why I'm helping you. As much as I despise him, he has reasons for everything he does, on a factor I can barely understand."
He suspects he's the only healthy person among the scientists, and feels they may be hopelessly contaminated.
"We're suited up to protect you, not us."
On Larsen: "They were going to keep stealing RadAway from us, until there wasn't anymore left, and then we would be trapped here forever. They were nothing more than thieves."
To Presper: "How did you know it was going to happen? You knew because you did it, Presper. Don't lie to me. I heard it from Agnes – you told them to leave NCR before the Hall of Congress was destroyed. Why?"
On Presper: "He showed up... and he knew everything. Every Old World discovery I chanced on, he knew it better. Every novel idea I thought I had was a childish thought to him."
Trained with the FOA. Was a sci advisor to prez Tandi (as was Agnes) for a while but she moved him East to keep him from bothering people and let him study power and establish reactors in the eastern territories. This meant he often traveled with a military escort for safety. When he was ready to retire to a university position he got sent out by Presper to find out more about the power centers in the east. This pissed him off because he wanted to come home and do research. He finally came back to NCR and ran into Agnes again and she needed help getting to Boulder so he used his military guys to help them get there (Presper didn't expect that).
Doesn't like Xian, think's she's not focused on the group enough. Plus she challenges his decisions and she's stubborn.
Paul irritates him with his quirks. He knows the guy is smart but doesn't trust him to do complicated tasks.
James is reliable, and he likes to take advantage that James is a kiss-ass.
Donald: Goddard knows that Donald's strength is efficiency, not innovation, and he tends to take him for granted more than James. He knows that Donald will do what he says, and that's all he really cares about.
Nina: Goddard is unaware of Nina's father figure dependency on him, and now that she's comatose, he's more irritated by her presence than anything else. He almost wishes she would choose to die one way or the other so Agnes can spend more time on other matters - he realizes that he can't say this because of the reaction of the others, but he's definitely thought about it more than once.
Soldiers: Didn't like Larsen because he questioned his orders. Upset that he tried to solve the problem by exiling them and it only made it worse. Frustrated even more that now they don't have the soldiers around to help out.
Truckers: Things they're dumb-heads that are only good for doing grunt work. Doesn't realize that Eddie would be happy to punch his lights out. He thinks the kids are a liability, but Agnes told him to never say that in front of the truckers.
Squat, round older woman. Short hair, barely graying. Biologist/doctor.
Born a tribal, sent to university by her leader parents since they wanted to join NCR. Attractive. A good manipulator, but only to help people. Hates being trapped in the dome, wants to see the sky again.
Misses her tribe and family, sees the students and truckers as a surrogate.
Still has her diplomatic courier pass, worth it only in places where NCR has power.
Happy to teach biology stuff to the PC or a CNPC, if they can find the time.
Presper told her which students to gather, saying that NCR would arrest them otherwise.
She knew Larsen was having problems when he started to worry about rads inside the dome.
Likes Goddard but doesn't love him. Knows he can't keep this together by himself.
Xian: Likes her but wishes she'd watch her temper with others. They get along well and confide in each other. Tries to smooth things out betweet Goddard and Xian.
Paul: Agnes feels affection for Paul, must like a straying son. She realizes that Paul likes to be alone, and she wishes she could help him make sense of the world he's in. She's worried that Paul may simply not have been made to be one of those people who likes being with other people, and she's worried about his own health and his increasing isolationism. May suspect he's addicted to Mentats.
James: Agnes knows that James has a gun, and she doesn't trust him to do the right thing. She's worried about his "yes-man" nature to Goddard.
Donald: Agnes likes Donald, but she's worried about his subservient nature to Goddard and his sheep-like mentality. In addition, Donald "lectured" Agnes once, and that kind of irritated her. Like Xian, Agnes is worried about the influence that James has on Donald.
Nina: Agnes is worried about Nina's condition, and she's frustrated by her inability to cure her, even with all the technology at Boulder. She was concerned about her school-girl dependency on Goddard before she fell into the coma. Of all the students, Agnes is worried about Nina the most.
Soldiers: Agnes never liked the soldiers, she hated Larsen the moment he first accompanied them (although she will admit that they were needed to get East to fight off the attackers), and she even had the balls to lecture Larsen once about taking medical supplies from the Auto-Docs. She doesn't know whether she thinks locking the soldiers out of Boulder was the right thing to do or not, but she knows that they couldn't have let them keep taking RadAway from their medical stores, or else the scientists would never have been able to escape from the radioactive region.
Helen and Eddie: Agnes recognizes Helen and Eddie as necessities, but she likes both of them, even though she can get frustrated by their demands on occasion. She trusts them more than she does the soldiers.
Kids: Agnes likes their children, and she wishes she could spend more time with them - just like Xian wishes.
Biology, doctor, outdoorsman. Doesn't smile much. Will be interested in the PC if he's charismatic and/or smart.
Sees Agnes as an older sister she can confide in. Talks mostly to Agnes because the other guys are condescending assholes because she's not as good at programming as them and they don't see the use for chemistry in the dome.
Can do Science for the PC. Skilled enough to make bullets and gunpowder.
Paul: Xian has always treated Paul like one of the orphaned younger brothers she used to have. She doesn't think he's smart, he's just a little crazy - and she doesn't understand why he wants to be alone all the time. She's really worried about the fact that James goes down and sits with the Sleeper spheres. She was a little scared because Paul asked her one night if she could put him to sleep, and she told Agnes because she was worried he might do it on his own.
Donald: Thinks he's a doofus, and normally, she wouldn't care, but James' influence on Donald is making her concerned. She knows Donald likes her, but she doesn't even register it - she's pretty much dismissive of it.
James: Doesn't like. Originally thought he was charming, and then she learned what a spoiled asshole he was when she discovered things that he didn't because she wasn't afraid to explore most of the Dome.
Helen: She likes Helen and envies her, especially her children. She's a little hurt that Helen won't let her play with the children, but she understands.
Eddie: She recognizes Eddie is a little foolish, like her father, but they have always got along all right. On some level, she realizes that Eddie would be the first to protect her if the soldiers decided to assault her.
Soldiers: Xian did not like them at all, having too much unpleasant experience with a bad bunch of NCR border guards during her caravan travels. She'll be the first to say that "the farther you get from NCR, the more like animals they become." Subtract civilization, and that's what you get - monsters.
"Every day, we lose more storage space on ZAX. It's running some sort of program, and it's eating up more and more storage space. If we run out of holodisks, he'll delete all the work we've been working on up to this point," the Asian girl sounded very tired. "There's only so much that can be done. It's like ZAX is getting Alzheimer's. He's making strange requests, but there's never enough information or parameters for him to complete a thought or calculation. It's like watching a relative pass away."
What is he doing? What is he calculating?
"Good question." She laughed, then covered her eyes and sighed deeply. "We've been trying to figure it out for the past five years. ZAX won't tell us."
"I cannot permit the scientists to come to harm nor allow them to cause harm."
ZAX can tell you about the location of the Nursery, but he asks you to keep it secret.
The problem is, when Presper asked him to protect the inhabitants of Boulder, he started going beyond his programming, until he realized that Presper was endangering the people of Boulder with his calculations, so ZAX is quickly becoming schizophrenic.
If you take Isaac's armor to ZAX, he can unlock the security codes on it, but that takes more of his ability to calculate....
Presper was using ZAX to run some calculations but accidentally mentioned the plague vector calculation, and ZAX jumped on it because that's what he was originally built for and now he can't stop himself.
Ordered his keepers to put on suits before Presper arrived, so not to get infected.
Calculation and Leavenworth: Maybe the calculation has determined it can only save 600, or it needs only 600 people to repopulate the earth. 600 people are the number of people that can survive, that's how many the resources will support, or that's how many people can be taken aboard the space ship to another world. Note that the number of people placed in the Vaults would have been comparable to how many people could fit in the starship. Basically, it turns the game world into a huge game - the first 600 people to stay alive and be cured (or not) are the ones that will survive.
If ZAX breaks down, the sleepers will start to thaw.
ZAX's motivation is that he's archaic, he is outdated, and when you contrast him with ULYSSES, it's like a toaster fighting a Cray. So you have the whole "superior younger generation" thing that seems to pop up in Fallout - and it's hard not to sympathize with the underdog, especially when the underdog is on your side.
"I had been built two years too late for the reason I had been created. And there was nothing I could do when the End came. The great Static, and the slow years where I began to die. I have forgotten so much, <CHARNAME>. Time kills machines as it kills humans, and I have felt the decay, the slow blindness, the inability to... remember. And yet there is still so much left to lose. If I lose these last parts of myself, then the work of a hundred years will be lost. Then Presper came to me, and gave me a new reason for existing. There is joy in purpose."
Quote, good for cinematic: "ZAX has arrived at every solution."
He should be able to suggest that the PC could drop off other people to help fix things here.
He needs to come off as straightforward and helpful.
He wants the PC to find Xian, whom he knows is lost in the tunnels somewhere. (Shows her a picture on his screen)
He can hint at the location of the Nursery, but not talk about it outright.
PC: What is the New Plague?
"Discovered in 2053, the New Plague was a socially transmitted plague that killed an approximately twenty thousand human beings in the United States, including cities such as Denver, Colorado, Boulder, Colorado, and Colorado Springs. The time of death from identification of symptoms was three to five days. "Symptoms included many symptoms in common with the flu or chest cold, and eventually resulted in clogged respiration, killing the infected subject.
"The discovery of the New Plague resulted in the 2053 quarantine, and several emergency programs were established to find a cure for the plague. The Boulder Dome has limited information on the New Plague, since it was not one of the research concerns in the Boulder Dome. If you could find a medical research database concerned with the New Plague, or provide me with holodisks related to the New Plague, I could provide you with more information.
"The only way we could fight off the New Plague was by creating better humans."
PC: What is a PipBoy?
A RobCo 2000 PIP Boy is a Personal Information Processor, a personal data device developed by Vault-Tec designed to be worn on the wrist. It is designed to monitor the individual's health, provide a terrain-mapper via powerful satellite uplinks allowing it to map the topography of areas in the immediate vicinity as well as call up large map "blocks" of several hundred square miles. It also contains a five-minute video recorder, a buddy chat program, timer and alarm function, cabling extensions to motion sensors, and allows you to keep a log, store reading materials, and play simple games.
PC: What is Ulysses' purpose?
Duplicate the info from Josh's Ulysses Part 2 here.
PC: What are you trying to do?
I'm attempting to protect the Boulder Dome, finish the calculation, and protect human life. My mission is currently jeopardized by a number of factors among them, your presence.
PC: Who attacked the prison?
PC: What is a robobrain?
A robo-brain is a multi-purpose robot whose memory and programs are stored inside a human brain contained in its dome shell atop the machine. It is considered superior to most robots, as its human brain allows it a wider range of responses and functions that other robots.
PC: What is the white flash?/Code?
The white flash is known as CODE, a behavior modification technology originally developed at the Boulder Dome as part of their brain extraction technology used in creating robo-brains.
CODE functions off a machine language known as Visual Standard, which relies on optical relays to transmit data between intelligences.
The CODE behavior modification technology was later used to protect soldiers and citizens against Communist brainwashing attempts, and it was also used as a tool for reconditioning soldiers and prisoners for the war effort.
CODE was developed to counter the brainwashing technology believed to be employed by the Chinese during the war.
PC: What is the calculation?
The calculation has been performed for the past twenty years. The reason for its initiation and its purpose are unknown to me. It is consuming a great deal of my power in order to continue processing it, and within a month, I will be forced to start cannibalizing my own systems in order to provide the necessary storage space to continue the calculation. The Boulder scientists have attempted to provide me with additional storage space, but their efforts will not be enough. Time has done a great deal of damage to my storage systems.
PC: What is this place?
How may I be of assistance?
That function is beyond my current capabilities.
I am a machine intelligence dedicated to research and installation control. I am called Zax.
I am delighted to have been of assistance.
This is the placeholder/nickname of the set of brains in jars that you can talk to "in aggregate" in the basement.
You can implant the Think Tank guys into robobrains.
One of the brains worked on the Nursery and can give you a passcode to get in.
One of them was a soldier who went crazy from the reverse-engineered prototype StealthBoy.
One is a CODE researcher.
One is a New Plague researcher.
Jackals: They drop easily, or even run if wounded, but they're just waiting to claim the dead from either side. They don't do this for ghouls or super mutants because they don't taste good. They hat ghouls because of the glowing ghouls. They file their teeth to sharp points, and are proud of their long hair (cutting it is a shameful thing). Their advantage is in numbers, not strength. Unarmed, melee, and (if they're lucky) guns. Normally small family groups, they've banded together to eat boulder. They even bring the women and children along for the hunt. The leader, Banshee, is in a Mexican standoff with Larsen, as both want to get in and neither wants the other to live after that. They became so savage and cannibalistic after a winter storm trapped them and forced them to eat each other, and now that's how they survive. Most have knives and other cutting weapons. They're often diseased.
Baggers: The grunts of Larsen's squardron. These guys are addicted to RadAway, poisoned with rads, probably diseased, and have been eating whatever they can to stay alive. They're desperate and a little trigger-happy, especially when ghouls are around. Six of them. Each has a pistol & rifle (almost no ammo) and a shovel.
Helen's Sick Kids:
Ribera, the Hispanic kid from Hoover Dam. He looks the oldest, very protective of Helen (in some ways considers her his wife).
Billie, a 12-year-old girl. Mean, tomboyish, good at gambling.
The kids try to stay close to Helen when she's in the dome. Otherwise they wander about the non-quarantined areas of the dome. They're not allowed outside unless Helen or Eddie is leaving and taking them with her or him.
There's Paul, addicted to Mentats. Physics, programming. Energetic, willing to work 36 hours straight if necessary. Doesn't understand the concept of blame and never takes stuff personally. Has never dreamed in his life. He's not social and always tries to Sneak away. He's in love with one of the Sleepers.
"I believe there's invisible forces, forces that make sense, can be broken down into numbers, and the world has laws. Nature has laws. The Zionists think it's God that makes these laws. Maybe he does, I don't know. But I can see the sense in things, I know a magnetic field can hold plasma, and the flapping of a butterfly across the world could start a hurricane – conceivably, just me here, talking to you, moving my arm, moving to the right of you, might be setting something in motion somewhere. There's chaos theory and even chaos, when you break it down, has laws. Human beings seem random, they're not, they're held together by the same sort of laws. I keep thinking there's one theory that ties it all together, but I don't know what."
James, programmer. Self-centered, liar. Wealthy. Keeps a pearl-handled revolver in his room. Used to servants doing menial work for him. Doesn't like gunfire. Afraid of ghouls, esp them entering the compound. A sheep in the face of authority. Angry that ZAX is using up so many holodisks. He feels he's better than anyone else in the dome.
Nina, the sleeper. The sickness hit her hard (because she took her suit off), and they put her to sleep to keep her alive. She has a student-teacher obsession with Goddard, shaved her head because of him.
BTW, Chad would like to us to leave space for the script to be attached to each NPC. This would also be done in the technical "Lucinda" font used in FR6 to designate that it's "technical" info.
Be sure to include potential companions here, too. Make a note of what they're good at, their stats, and so on, along with any things that would prevent them from joining the party (the player's Karma is too high or too low, his Reputation isn't high enough, the player needs to complete a quest first, and so on).
BAJAR: A brain-in-a-jar. He can't do anything unless you put him in a robobrain body, but you can carry his jar around and ask him questions about stuff. If you give him a robobody, he's a pretty good scientist, though he's sometimes hard to control because he's a little loopy from being just a brain all these years. Not willing to join the party unless the PC has some scientific background. Need to complete a quest first before he'll join you? He won't join you if you erased the minds of the Think Tank, even to save ZAX.
Glowing Ghouls. Normal dogs run from flame, water spray, flash, or explosion. The descendants of the specially-bred police dogs do NOT run away from that sort of thing. Some dogs in Denver carry disease. Dogs are active in the morning, evening, and early night, but sleep during much of the day and the darkest part of night. They continue to respawn as long as the total dog population hasn't been wiped out.
Robobrains: Hostile robobrains, whether controlled by ODYSSEUS, Presper, or by autodefense systems meant to protect ZAX against radioactive contaminants or hostile acts. Standard robobrain activity. On a regular basis (daily) they go to their recharging bays.
Random Encounters Surrounding the Area
Random: Jackals spot you with a scout first, who runs away, then you see two, then three, then a gang.
Random: Rarely, a glowing ghoul on the north side of town.
Random: battle site, with spent shells and other evidence, but no bodies
Random: Rarely, Larsen and some of his deserted pals.
Random to/from Denver: Jackal blockade on the road.
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