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Gametitle-VB
Gametitle-VB
Gametitle-VBThe following is based on Van Buren and has not been confirmed by canon sources.

This is part 5 of the Denver design document for Van Buren, the canceled Fallout 3 by Black Isle Studios.

Contents

1 Main page of document
6 Part 5
Document start icon The following is the original document or a transcript thereof.

Scripting

Scripting covers a number of elements:

Note that there may be some scripting-specific information for NPCs, audio, art requirements and so on that may be listed there.

General

There are some general scripting issues...

Wacky Scripting: If you get the klaxon/dogs quest finished, all the dogs leave town, but the random encounters with dogs outside of town in the nearby areas goes up.

If you reactivate the Box's robot factor, robots start appearing (see spawn, below), eventually driving out all human inhabitants (dogs and lizards remain because they don't attack the robots and aren't seen as a threat).

Cut Scenes: There will be a cut scene at the Box if Bombay Jack and/or the traitor salvagers aren't dealt with before you go to the Box. The cut scene involves you, the traitor salvagers, and Bombay Jack. Note: Be sure to include animations and IDs to the art for scriptors contained within the cut-scene description.

If Jack blows up his lair, we'll need a FMV of the building blowing up, and a script change to make the map a field of rubble with your characters scattered through it, severely injured.

Respawning:

Dogs and lizards spawn and respawn. Dogs continue to respawn until you kill them all. Lizards respawn everywhere; except if you finish the "kill the lizards" quest they no longer respawn at the New Camp.

Once you breach the Box and the robot factory reactivates, robots start to spawn and take up spots on every single map, including random maps. They move to react to threats, so once a group (like the salvagers) attacks them, the robots will overwhelm and imprison them, with some guys escaping to the hills to never be seen again.

Difficulty Level/PC level/Multiplayer:

At higher difficulties, PC levels, and in multiplayer games, the number of dogs in random encounters are greater and the dogs are tougher. Likewise, the power level of the NCR soldiers, Rival Salvagers, and Caesar's Legion goes up in these cases.

Event Stuff:

Once the Legion guys are discovered in Denver, every month that passes has a 25% chance that they've left to go back to Caesar, including taking all their slaves with them. This means the PC might not be able to grab Daniel.

Eventually the traitor salvagers are going to make their own strike at the Box. The PC will be able to hear these interactions over the radio. Unless the PC can get there quickly, it'll be over by the time the PC gets there, and the traitor salvagers will have been sniped or bombed by Jack and he'll be in the process of stripping their corpses (or done doing so).

If the PC uses Dogbody's BITE-ME bomb within the New Camp, within an hour the place is overrun with dogs and the salvagers are forced to flee Denver forever. Their camp remains overrun with dogs for several weeks.

Eventually Dogbody attacks the PC, regardless of how friendly or helpful the PC used to be.

ARGOS comes by on his rounds, looking for the PC. If Daniel or the other prisoner is there, he grabs them, too.

Cool Shit

The Cool Shit section is just that -- what's cool about this area? For starters, you should be able to say in one or two sentences why a player would remember this location. If you were a player, what would make you want to play this location? What would make you glad you played this location?

What keeps the PC coming back? More stuff to loot, more trading with the salvagers. The Box. Dealing with Bombay Jack. The NCR guys. Working on fixing the train. Starting trade agreements with the salvagers & NCR. Convincing them to go to New Canaan to work.

Handouts: Riot & plague documents, background on the DCPD K-9 program, correspondence from before the war (the woman writing to her soldier husband, for example).

Vehicles: If we go with the police car option, this is the place to get it, since we have a police station motor pool with several vehicles that can be salvaged for parts.

Train: If you get the train running, you can take it anywhere from Fort Abandon to Boulder immediately, but any other place (Hoover Dam, Reservation, New Canaan) requires working to repair the tracks that are out along the way.

Task List

The Tasks section is a list of all the work that needs to be done for the area. It is a good summary for the producer, other designers, artists, and programmers as to what has been done in the area, who to check with if you have questions about certain tasks, and so on.

This section is only useful if it is used. If we're several months into the project and no one has been using it, then it will no longer be used or updated. There's no sense in wasting time doing additional bookkeeping if it's serving no purpose.

Sound Requirements

Area Sound requirements
Denver (general) MUSIC DESCRIPTION
Faint country feel (John Denver's Rocky Mountain High, etc.), of things being built and people living, but overwhelmed by a morose tune of loss.
BASIC SFX
Barking of dogs. Wind. Faint hammering.
WALLA SFX
None
DCPD MUSIC DESCRIPTION
As Denver (general), except has more military elements, more patriotic.
BASIC SFX
As Denver (general).
WALLA SFX
Faint sounds of a human howling like a dog (this sound stops while you encounter Dogbody and after you kill him).
City Park/ MUSIC DESCRIPTION
Dangerous low guitar, representing the dog threat, sounding something like "Zed's Dead Baby/Bullwinkle Part II" from Pulp Fiction soundtrack.
BASIC SFX
As Denver (general), except no hammering. Dog sounds more prevalent.
WALLA SFX
The Box MUSIC DESCRIPTION
Industrial/factory sounding tune, reminiscent of the "crazy factory" theme music used in Bugs Bunny cartoon.
BASIC SFX
As Denver (general), except construction sounds, like robots being manufactured. (this stops if you manage to shut down the factory)
WALLA SFX
Bombay Jack's Canyon MUSIC DESCRIPTION
As Denver (general), except without the morose, more paranoid (bombs are everywhere here). Or like "Bring Out The Gimp/Comanche" from Pulp Fiction soundtrack.
BASIC SFX
As Denver (general), except no hammering.
WALLA SFX
Crazy laughter
Police Chief's Fallout Shelter MUSIC DESCRIPTION
As DCPD
BASIC SFX
As Denver (general), except
WALLA SFX
New Camp/

Rival Salvager's Camp

MUSIC DESCRIPTION
As Denver (general), except more industrial, no sadness. Alternately, In the Jailhouse Now from O Brother Where Are Thou? Soundtrack, or Big Rock Candy Mountain from same.
BASIC SFX
As Denver (general), except
WALLA SFX
Caesar's Legion Camp MUSIC DESCRIPTION
Something evoking a Roman Legion's marching tune.
BASIC SFX
As Denver (general), except
WALLA SFX

Location Checklist

Each area document will also have a Location Checklist.

In Fallout 3, we need to make sure that each character type has an equally enjoyable role-playing experience in each location (evil characters and stupid characters are usually given the short end of the stick; the rewards for these types of characters are usually unbalanced when compared to the goody-two-shoes characters). No more!

In addition, there were a few skills and statistics in Fallout 1 and 2 that didn't see enough use by the designers. As an example, Charisma wasn't nearly as useful as most of the other statistics in Fallout 1, and the Doctor Skill was as useless as a third thumb in both Fallout 1 and Fallout 2. If we take care to see that each stat and skill can be used effectively design-wise in each location in the game, then I think these stats can gain back some of the ground they've lost over the past few games. That's what the location checklist is for.

The location checklist is a glorified grocery list, covering a number of the role-playing possibilities for each "kind" of character the player may have chosen (Stealth Boy, Science Boy, Combat Boy, Charisma Boy). This checklist is intended to insure each kind of character has something cool to do in each location, and that the rewards and role-playing experiences for each location are balanced whether the player is good or evil, stupid or smart, a combat monster or a science guy.

Designers don't have to make sure that each entry is checked off for each location – as long as they make up for it in another of their locations in the game. The exception to this rule is for early areas of the game, since those are the first areas the players will encounter, and I want their character to have a rich role-playing experience all-around right from the start. (If the player went through three early areas, and his Doctor skill isn't used once, then he's going to be sorry he took it.)

My prototype checklist consists of the following entries:

Attribute Challenge Reward
CHARACTER SPECIFIC
Evil Karma Character Kill the NCR salvagers XP, loot
Good Karma Character Kill evil salvagers, kill Caesar's Legion guys, free slaves XP, loot
Stupid Character
Low Reputation Character
High Reputation Character
Human Character
Male Character
Female Character Seduce a salvager for something
COMBAT BOY
Firearms Destroy all dogs XP
Melee Destroy all dogs XP
Unarmed Destroy all dogs XP
CHARISMA BOY
Barter Do trades with salvagers, bargain for a claim Loot, loot
Deception Trick the salvagers
Persuasion Establish trade with NCR/New Canaan
SCIENCE BOY
Mechanics Many things to repair
Medic Wake Garcia, help Jimmy identify drugs
Outdoorsman Know that the ultrasonics would fix the dog problem
Science Digging up info from DCPD computer
STEALTH BOY
Lockpick Entering the box, opening the safes
Sneak Dealing with dogs, lizards, Bobay Jack, Dogbody, evil salvagers, Legion
Steal
Traps Defusing Bombay Jack's bombs on the freeway and in his home
GENERIC SKILLS
Carrot 1 (Bonus Perk, Medal, Epithet, whatever) Claim Jumper
Carrot 2
Easter Egg 1
Easter Egg 2
PERKS + TRAITS
Perks (Any cool Perk mileage?)
Traits (Any cool Trait mileage?) --
ENVIRONMENT
Economics Scanevnging. Desperate for food and medicine, willing to trade other goods
Power/Infrastructure Frontier/survivalist
Food Dogs, lizards
Tie to Another Area 1 Trade with NCR
Tie to Another Area 2 Labor for New Canaan
Tie to Another Area 3 Interactions with Boulder
MULTIPLAYER GAMING
Multiplayer Elements?

Room for Improvement

Also be sure to include hooks for "room for improvement." This section may change depending on how Ferret thinks it should be organized.

Room for Improvement: You can repair stuff at the train station, getting the tracks fixed and the train, after which it's a working train station and can have guests. If you get the connection fixed all the way to NCR and establish trade with them, they'll actually post a small military squad here.

End Movies

Each area document will also have a list of possible End Movies depending on what the character did in the location. This section should contain:

  • The condition for each end movie. Someone has to script this, so make sure it includes all necessary flags or other conditions that need to be checked.
  • The narration text for the end movie. Write it as if Ron Perlman would read it.
  • Some suggested art for the end movie slideshow. Keep it as a simple 2D image.

Note: Over the course of the project, you may wish to collect art that may be appropriate for an end movie slideshow and just keep it stored in a folder on the server or locally.

A quick example is provided below:

WHERE TO GO CONDITIONS

The player never entered Denver Skip Cinematic
The player had the satellite fire on Denver. Goto 1
Killed NCR salvagers, dogs rule Goto 2
NCR salvagers never make a trade with other groups, they leave, dogs rule Goto 3
Reconnected salvagers to NCR in Hoover Dam, no train, dogs eliminated, it's a fort! Goto 4
Reconnected salvagers to NCR in Hoover Dam, no train, dogs still present, salvagers end up leaving, dogs rule Goto 5
Reconnected salvagers to NCR in Hoover Dam, got train running, dogs eliminated, it's a fort! Goto 6
Reconnected salvagers to NCR in Hoover Dam, got train running, dogs still present, dogs eventually eliminated, it's a fort! Goto 7
Ghouls take over Denver (if you tell them about it and Denver doesn't at least become a fort) Goto 8

1. NUKE DESTROYS DENVER! (WTG)

Denver, once ravaged by nuclear war, suffered again as the satellite-launched warhead plummeted to earth. Dogs, salvagers, buildings, everything was incinerated by the atomic fire. Only a few hardy mutant cockroaches survived the blast. Show a mushroom cloud in the distance with a highway and train tracks leading up to it.

2. DOG CITY (WTG)

With the deaths of the NCR salvagers, the dogs completely overtake Denver. Though desperate wastelanders brave its borders from time to time in order to scavenge materials from the old world city, the city belongs to the dogs and they aggressively defend it against intruders. Show packs of dogs running through the streets, the skeletons of skyscrapers looming above them.

3. DOG CITY mk 2 (WTG)

Isolated from NCR and other groups, the salvagers of Denver eventually die or leave their claims in despair. The dogs roam freely through the town. Though desperate wastelanders brave its borders from time to time in order to scavenge materials from the old world city, the city belongs to the dogs and they aggressively defend it against intruders. Show packs of dogs running through the streets, the skeletons of skyscrapers looming above them.

4. FORT DENVER ESTABLISHED! (WTG)

With ties reestablished between NCR and its Denver salvagers, and the dog threat eliminated, the salvager camp becomes the foundation for a fortified area in Denver. Over time more salvagers come to the city and establish claims, and the New Camp becomes a true fort. The original salvagers buy off their sentences, sell their claims, and move west, moderately wealthy for their years of hard work. Show a skyscraper on a major road, surrounded by fortified walls and guarded by frontier guys with guns.

5. DOG CITY mk 3! (WTG)

Though the Denver salvagers were able to establish trade ties with NCR, the threat of the dogs and the great distance to Hoover Dam eventually do in their small camp before it gets a chance to benefit from the arrangement. The dogs roam freely through the town. Though desperate wastelanders brave its borders from time to time in order to scavenge materials from the old world city, the city belongs to the dogs and they aggressively defend it against intruders. Show packs of dogs running through the streets, the skeletons of skyscrapers looming above them.

6. FORT DENVER ESTABLISHED! Mk 2 (WTG)

With ties reestablished between NCR and its Denver salvagers, and the dog threat eliminated, the train station becomes the foundation for a fortified area in Denver. Over time more salvagers come to the city and stake claims, and Union Station becomes a fort within the city limits. The original salvagers buy off their sentences, sell their claims, and move west, moderately wealthy for their years of hard work. Show the train station, surrounded by fortified walls and guarded by frontier guys with guns.

7. FORT DENVER ESTABLISHED! Mk 3 (WTG)

With ties reestablished between NCR and its Denver salvagers, the train station becomes the foundation for a fortified area in Denver. Salvagers and soldiers from Hoover Dam drive back the dog packs, fortify Union Station, and stake claims in the city. The original salvagers buy off their sentences, sell their claims, and move west, moderately wealthy for their years of hard work. In time, Fort Denver becomes an actual town. Show the train station, surrounded by fortified walls and guarded by frontier guys with guns.

8. GHOUL CITY (WTG)

Without the strong support of NCR, the Denver salvagers fall prey to attacks by the ghouls of the Reservation, hungry for its old-world resources. The ghouls take over Denver, fortify Union Station, and mine its resources to further their agenda in the wasteland. Show the train station, surrounded by fortified walls and guarded by ghouls with guns.

Random Notes

This section is just for random notes you've made on the location - brainstorming ideas or whatever. It's like a word junkyard for stuff you might use or might not, but you haven't ruled them out yet.

Appendix

Include a summary of changes you've done in a document at the end, and dump it into the Source Safe comments, if you can. Chances are, you'll have to email this information to certain people on the team, so it's worthwhile to record here.

8/11/01 – finished quests, last ragtag bits

8/6/01 – rearranged NPCs so most of them were generic

8/1/01 – added maps

7/1/01 – added quest ideas

06-25-01 – Fallout Location Template document created.


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