Born on June 25, 2020 (261 years old) to a wealthy Nevada tool magnate, Robert Edwin House was orphaned at an early age when his parents died in a freak accident involving an auto gyro and lightning. Cheated of his inheritance by his half-brother, Anthony, he nevertheless attended the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and later went on to found RobCo Industries in his hometown of Las Vegas at the age of just 22. It would soon become one of the most profitable corporations in the world, owing mostly to House's considerable technical genius and business acumen, and he used the wealth and power to gain controlling interests in myriad other businesses. These included REPCONN Aerospace, the Lucky 38 Hotel & Casino on Las Vegas Boulevard, and perhaps, most personally, the H&H Tool Company - the family business usurped by his greedy half-brother (although curiously, the factory on the outskirts of Vegas was still under his brother's control in 2077).
A staunch pragmatist by nature, Mr. House would regularly design and run mathematical paradigms based on global political and socio-economic conditions in an effort to predict future events. By 2065, these projections led him to the inexorable conclusion that the world would be engulfed in a nuclear war within fifteen years. Worse still, his contacts within the military informed him that seventy-seven Chinese warheads were aimed at his beloved Las Vegas. Armed with this knowledge and his projections, House went to work on a secret plan to ensure the city would survive this apocalypse and that he would live to see the world after the war. He programmed multiple mainframes with satellite links meant to disable the vast majority of the Chinese missiles while in flight, then designed an array of high powered laser cannons, which he had installed on the roof of the Lucky 38, to deal with any missile his program had missed. To preserve himself, he took equally drastic steps: his body was permanently connected to an extremely sophisticated life support device to take care of his physiological needs, while his brain was wired directly into his vast information network via an enormous supercomputer. Essentially, he became a one-of-a-kind humanoid brain bot, with the Lucky 38 and an army of securitrons serving as his "body".
An integral element of his plan was the platinum chip, which in reality was a combination access card and high capacity data storage device, containing a massive OS upgrade for his Securitrons and the laser defense network. The chip was to be delivered in the afternoon of October 23, 2077. Unfortunately, about 20 hours before delivery, the Great War began. The chip was lost and was rediscovered over 200 years later in Sunnyvale by some of the multiple scavengers hired by House. Forced to work with an inferior version of the OS, he has suffered numerous system crashes and was even forced into a coma by one of the failures before being able to reboot an earlier, stable version.
House regained consciousness in 2138. Biding his time, he entered the world stage once again in 2274, when Securitrons under his command emerged from the Lucky 38. This action was prompted by the arrival of New California Republic scouts at Hoover Dam. In order to establish his rule, he enlisted the help of tribes living in Vegas (later known as the Three Families) and rebuilt the city just in time to welcome the arrival of the New California Republic army's advance forces. In exchange for help with Hoover Dam and permission to use the McCarran Airport as its headquarters, House signed the New Vegas treaty, ensuring cooperation from NCR and, for a time, protecting The Strip from annexation.
Mr. House is the mysterious overlord of the Strip. He controls his small empire from the confines of the Lucky 38 casino, where no other living person has set foot for over two hundred years.
House lives in the Lucky 38 and is in charge of the securitrons that roam New Vegas. At some point after emerging from stasis, House won the leadership of Vault 21 in a bet, stripped it of all useful technology, and then planned to permanently seal the Vault away by filling it with cement. At the pleadings of Sarah Weintraub he left the top section of Vault 21 as it used to be, and she converted it into a hotel (all the casino equipment was already there from the vault experiment).
Mr. House is extremely physically decrepit and can only live inside a self-contained life support unit. The Courier has the opportunity to break through his security and see his true form. However, opening his isolation chamber, even for a second, means that Mr. House will not live more than a year due to exposure to outside contaminants.
The House Always Wins: Mr. House gives the player the quest, which leads to one of the final quests, All or Nothing. In this case, player communicates with House only through the computer terminal in his office.
Mr. House plays a major role in the game. The Courier hears a lot about him while traveling, but upon reaching New Vegas they are invited by House himself to visit him in the Lucky 38. There, House gives the player vital information about Benny and the platinum chip. Also, he allows the Courier and his/her companions to use the Lucky 38's presidential suite as a safehouse.
On the shores of Lake Mead, due east of New Vegas, sits the grandiose pre-War House Resort & Country Club, the current site of the NCR's Camp Golf. Due to its name, its obvious past opulence, and the presence of a large portrait of Robert Edwin House, standing in front of a large robot resembling Liberty Prime, in its main dining hall, it may be surmised that Mr. House was a chief financier and patron of the club before the bombs fell. This portrait is reminiscent of a famous painting of Howard Hughes, who was also an avid golf player.
If Mr. House is disintegrated by an energy weapon, the stasis chamber disintegrates with him. The same event occurs when using a plasma weapon and its signature goo.
From information contained on the terminals in the H&H Tools Factory, it is gleaned that Robert House's half-brother, Anthony, used underhanded means to wrest his inherited share of the family business from him after the death of their father. It is strongly implied that Robert's later, methodical hostile takeover, coupled with McCarthyist paranoia regarding the Communist Chinese, drove Anthony House completely mad.
Mr. House is given the nickname "Not-At-Home" by the Omertas for his tendency to remain ostensibly neutral in Strip affairs.
If you take Mr. House out of his stasis chamber, he will ask you why you have ruined his plans and he will react differently depending on what you tell him. If you say you did it in the name of the NCR, he will belittle them and call you a "sad, misguided whore." If you tell him you are acting on behalf of Caesar, he will be horrified that slavery is humanity's future. If you say you did it for Yes Man, he will tell you your "vanity project" is doomed for failure. If you say it was "just business", he will retort by saying that you should have worked for him for personal gain. Finally, if you say you did it just because you didn't like him, he will call you a fool for letting your feelings about him jeopardize humanity's future.
Robert Edwin House is one of the characters that the player must eat in order to earn the Meat of Champions perk.
In the G.E.C.K. there is a version of Mr. House as a human before the war, although he has no mustache and his hair is gray, rather than black as it looks on his computer.
Due to his age and method of staying alive, Mr. House actually counts as an abomination for the Abominable challenge.
If you kill him using the Ranger Takedown with any kind of displacer glove, Mr. House and the stasis chamber will flip over, causing a lag or freeze.
Another portrait of Robert House, similar to the one in the House Resort, is found in Higgs village in the add-onOld World Blues. It was punctured by several knives, most likely by Doctor 0, who has an intense hatred for House, long before the events of Old World Blues.
When killed, the player loses Karma, despite House's Neutral karma.
If you speak to Ulysses after the end of Lonesome Road, you can tell him if you have killed House. At first he is indifferent and wonders what will happen to Vegas and the Three Families now that House is gone, but soon after he states that it's for the best.
"Success depends on forethought, dispassionate calculation of probabilites, accounting for every stray variable."
"If you want to see the fate of democracies, look out the windows."
"I like to think you have enough sense to do the right thing. The rewards for doing so are immense... as are the punishments for not doing so."
One of the challenges in the Gun Runner's Arsenal, A Slave Obeys, requires you to kill House with a 9-iron or Nephi's golf driver, which is a reference to Bioshock's Andrew Ryan, who suffers a similar fate.
In casino parlance, "the house" refers generally to the gambler's opponent, the casino itself, as in the idiom, "The house always wins."
Mr. House's personality is based on that of Howard Hughes. His obsession with snowglobes is a reference to another work of fiction, Orson Welles' Citizen Kane, itself based on the life of William Randolph Hearst. A snowglobe falls from the hands of the dying 'Hearst' in the beginning of the film as he utters the famously cryptic line, "Rosebud".
Jane, House's computer companion, is likely an allusion to the filmstar Jane Russell, who was under contract to Howard Hughes and also his lover for a time.
Mr. House had another Securitron gal named Marilyn (based on Marilyn Monroe) that was apparently cut. However, she appears alongside with Jane in a card from the deck of card of the collector version, the texture file for her "face" is still in the game's files and there's a reference to her in the G.E.C.K. Also, after meeting Mr. House, Veronica will say she's surprised he only has two robot sex slaves. This was likely meant to reference Jane and the absent Marilyn, but the line was never removed or changed.
xbox360 A medicine check of 35, gaining XP each time, can be accessed as many times as you want.
pc Activating Mr. House fails to start dialogue, rendering him useless (the mainframe). This might be the result of resetting ally status of Securitrons when they are hostile due to a faction error with vault 11 robots. To fix this, enter the following commands into the console: setally 1267AB 0001B2A4, resetquest 00147885, setstage 00147885 5, setobjectivedisplayed 00147885 1, prid 001264c5, setdestroyed 0.
Portrait of Mr. House standing in front of a large robot, located in the House Resort.
The portrait of Mr. House is extremely similar to this one of Hughes standing in front of an airplane.