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"Vats of Goo" (Fallout)
Broken Hills is a mining town, uranium mostly. It can be a rough place, so watch yourself.”— John Cassidy
Broken Hills was a mining town in the western part of the pre-War state of Nevada. After the war of 2077, it became a haven, inhabited by humans, super mutants and ghouls, living together in relative harmony (or so it seemed).
Shortly after the Master's defeat, super mutant Marcus wandered aimlessly until he encountered Jacob, a Brotherhood of Steel paladin in power armor who had pledged himself to the extermination of all mutants. Marcus and Jacob fought for a day or two, but they soon realized the futility of their battle and became friends (though Marcus always thought that Jacob would have been improved by a dip in the FEV vats, while Jacob disagreed, this was always a point of contention between the two). As they wandered through the wastes, they attracted a small following of refugees from the war. The refugees believed that Marcus's strength and Jacob's power armor offered them a certain level of protection from the hazardous wasteland. Eventually, Marcus and Jacob led the refugees to settle in Broken Hills to exploit the uranium mine there.
Broken Hills provides all the uranium that Vault City and Gecko need for their atomic power plants. The radiation-resistant ghouls and mutants that live and work in Broken Hills make ideal uranium miners since they're in little danger from the radiation exposure miners face here. Unfortunately, since Vault City will deal only with humans, the miners must use human traders as their intermediaries. These human salesmen charge the miners an exorbitant commission for their work. Tensions in this multiracial community have risen to a fever pitch because the human merchants have been accused of outright theft of the fruits of the miners' hard-earned labor.
With the destruction of the conspiracy to destroy the mutants, Broken Hills began to thrive. Then the uranium ran out. The city, having lost its sole reason for existing, slowly dispersed. The residents carried their riches with them, leaving the place a wind-swept, desolate ghost town. A few hold-outs remained, attempting to eke out a pathetic existence, but eventually, they too, disappeared.
Broken Hills can be found twenty squares east and fifteen squares south of Arroyo.
The Broken Hills uranium mine is worked by the town's super mutant population. The radiation in the mine has minimal effect on them and their great strength aids in the physically taxing labor. The mine does require an air purifier, however, as toxic gas build-up makes the mine inoperable unless it is regularly filtered. The town's life blood comes from the uranium mine. Broken Hills has its own operational refinery operated by ghouls. If you can purchase uranium ore from a caravan, the refinery will produce refined uranium for you. The town is powered by a small reactor that runs off of uranium slugs and produces ample power for the community. The uranium trade runs to the NCR and Vault City as well as trafficking brahmin Herds across the wastes. The uranium trade is so important to so many towns' existence that even Vault City will check their unrelenting bigotry for outsiders and mutants and trade valuable medical supplies and money for uranium ore. Ever since the mine's air purifier broke down, uranium production has halted, leading to an economic crisis in Broken Hills.
Random encounters in the Broken Hills area feature Unity Patrols of humans, ghouls, and mutants that are friendly to players with positive karma .
|Broken Hills mine|
|Broken Hills Downtown||→||Broken Hills Residential|
|Broken Hills underground|
If anything, Micky's presence well indicates a broken Broken Hills economy - make sure to talk to him on your way into town. Ghouls operate the uranium plant which is located downtown. Marcus can be found out front of the jail, and players in need of work be sure to check out the caravan office, operated by Bill. Liz runs the general store in town.
Broken Hills offers a resort-like setting for unprejudiced, mutated, and motivated individuals looking to make a fortune mining for Uranium. Once threatening, dangerous mutated cacti from the wastes have been placed into pens to make attractive lawn-spaces along the length of the main street. The residential area houses ghouls and super mutants, as well as one scientist and his chess-playing radscorpion, and a talking spore plant.
The Broken Hills uranium mine is worked by the town's super mutant population. The radiation in the mine has minimal effect on them and their great Strength aids in the physically taxing labor. The mine does require an air purifier, however, as toxic gas build-up makes the mine inoperable unless it is regularly filtered. The town's life blood comes from the uranium mine.
The underground is a base for rats mostly, but some super mutants (like Francis) saw some people in the underground. The Chosen One discovers that many people died here because they were super mutant haters and wanted to get rid of them. See Find the missing people for Marcus.
It's not always easy for humans, ghouls and super mutants to live together. This has culminated in a conspiracy to rid Broken Hills of its mutated citizens, led by human purist and store owner Jacob. The conspiracy has resulted in the arrest and incarceration of several of Joseph's supporters as well as the murder of several civilians; their bodies have been dumped in the town's caves and sewers in hopes of destabilizing Broken Hills and starting conflict. Jacob also sabotaged the mine's air purifier temporarily halting mine operation. He ultimately hoped to detonate the purifier and bring the whole mine down on all the super mutants working inside.
In opposition to Jacob are the mutants, mine foreman Zaius, and the arm wrestling champ Francis. There is also a conspiracy on the mutant side, instigated by Francis, which the player discovers upon finding a note on the corpses in the secret tunnel system under Broken Hills. The note proves that the mutants hoped to frame the anti-mutant faction in the town for the deaths of the townspeople.
- Uranium ore can be obtained either from a wandering merchant in a random encounter in the Broken hills area, or from the hidden cave to the right of the entrance just inside the uranium mine.
Vault City travel logEdit
- Broken Hills: A mining community to the south of Vault City that mines uranium ore. The ore is traded to Vault City in exchange for medical supplies, mostly Rad-X and RadAway. Humans are believed to be forced to live with mutants and ghouls within the town. Due to the nature of the inhabitants and the high probability of contamination, Vault Citizens should avoid Broken Hills at ALL costs!
- Population: No current census, but believed to be in the hundreds of residents.
- Government: Rumor has it a MUTANT serves as the First Citizen of this community. This is extremely unlikely, as most mutants are incapable of higher reasoning. If this rumor IS true, it is another reason to avoid Broken Hills altogether.
- Background radiation count: Current readings are unavailable. Believed high.
- Mutation rate: Believed high. Broken Hills most likely has a high rate of degenerative mutations.
Behind the scenesEdit
- Broken Hills is likely named for Broken Hill, a town in Australia known for its silver, lead and zinc mining, and also the namesake for the Broken Hill Proprietary Company, the largest mining company in the real world. This could be a reference to Mad Max, as The Road Warrior (known as Mad Max 2 in Australia) was shot on location near Broken Hill. This would be yet another in a long line of Mad Max references featured throughout the Fallout series.
- Broken Hills may also be a reference to a Nevada Ghost Town, which was also a gold and silver mine.
- There are no real-world locations in northern Nevada corresponding with Broken Hills, the closest town corresponding roughly to Broken Hills location on the Fallout 2 world map is Fallon, Nevada.
- A bug that can be either exploited or not but is amusing either way is to make your way behind the shops and power station, up to the top of the map, which is supposed to be inaccessible. Literally at the extreme western edge of town, if you position yourself just right, on the square adjacent to the fence on one side and the red exit grid on the other, and click on the other side of the fence, the Chosen One will walk offscreen, and come back on the other side of the fence, and come back even easier. The footlockers in this newly accessible area contain, in the first locker, nothing, in the second and successive lockers, the sale inventory of the various merchants in town. Even after you put Jacob in jail, his box still restocks. Arm explosives, setting it for a long time period, and put it into the first box, then run back and talk to a shopkeeper you'd like to see fragged; after you leave dialogue they'll be standing around with, figuratively at least, a lit stick of dynamite in their hands. As usual, refrain from saving, reloading, or changing from one zone to another while armed explosives are waiting to go off, as this can cause crashes. [verified]
- There is an infinite money exploit at the uranium refinery behind the Caravan office. Bring uranium ore to the glowing white ghoul. If the player agrees to have the ore refined for $1000, which takes a game day, the ghoul will ask to buy it back for $1500. Once at the dialogue screen where the ghoul buys the refined ore, repeat the conversation and sale over and over, using the relevant number keys to speed the process. [verified]