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Just a thought of where to get some schematics in NV with reasons provided (and not just big guns).
Deathclaw Gauntlet - Sloan, i'd think for obvious reasons. If you're gutsy enough to go try to slay a deathclaw at that early of a level you deserve to make it. Get it from that lady at the bar who also makes the omelettes. Or better yet have her give you the recipe for both the omelette and the gauntlet when you bring her a deathclaw egg.
Rock-It Launcher - sold by Chet, so its early game accessible as per F3 with Moira.
Railway Rifle - sold at Mick and Ralph's, a polite society is an armed society.
Bottlecap Mine - sold by Cliff Briscoe in Novac, or can be looted from the irradiated locked room behind his desk.
Shishkebab - perhaps a reward for beating all of the combatants in the Legion Arena, gives some incentive to do that series of micro-quests.
Nuka Grenade - given by Fantasitc at Helios One after completing his relevant quest, or you can kill him and it's on his corpse.
Dart Gun - not sure about this one, maybe hidden inside a toy crate at the children's barracks at Nellis?
Side note, I like all the ideas posted here. Big Guns would be a great addition to regular gameplay and would do good to shake up my common builds and make me try new things. Y'all keep doing God's work.
Paddle faster, I hear banjo music!
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I'll get something together soon then. Need to think about who gets schematics in NV. I guess Chet, and Gun Runners makes sense... where else?
I'd say Old Lady Gibson since she's near Novac and you see her pretty early game. And she's a junk dealer.
With the Gun Runners I'd personally not think that schematics would be available from them as they even mention their secrecy, unless it's a theft aspect.
I know this may be a really stupid question. But are there tiers to Big Guns or are they all basically same tier?
If life is but a test, where's the damn answer key?!?!?
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I kinda like the weapon schematic placements you posted GoingZelda. The Shishkebab would only be available to male characters if it was tied to the Legion arena though.
In terms of rebalancing the Big Guns weapons Roy have you considered boosting the power of the uniques slightly and giving them a slightly higher weapons skill req to get the full power? I was thinking kind of like how the K9000 is a skill 75 weapon while FIDO, the unique variant, is a skill 85 weapon. That could help fill in the gaps in the 0-100 skill spread somewhat. Like if the minigun was a base 50 Big Guns skill and Eugene was 65 or something. This might also make some of the uniques in NV worth getting as currently, they are overshadowed by their base variants with all the mods installed. I'd probably leave Vengeance alone though, it's powerful enough as it is.
As a side note I don't think repairing such items would be that difficult in DC. There are several places where NPC's with miniguns or flamers are guaranteed spawns fairly early in the game. Plus TTW makes weapon repair kits a thing in DC. There's a ton and a half of scrap laying around to make those.
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There's a quest to steal data from the Gun Runners for the Crimson Caravan, so I'd say that the CC should have a few of the "lower level" schematics, and the better/higher level ones be in the GR shop so that you can steal them during that quest.
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Have you considered making the Drone canon available in Vegas? At the Alien crash site? Here is why I think you should:
In Vanilla FNV, choosing WW or not choosing it yeilds a powerful energy weapon in both cases, so there is no major gameplay reason to pick one or the other. With Big Guns, you will be choosing between a Big Gun and an Energy Gun, which is not ideal IMO. If the aliens also carried a Drone Canon, that would make it better, IMO. (You already get Energy Guns from the mercs, if you choose that encounter, they carry laser guns). Just my 2 cents.
"Who are you, who do not know your history?"
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The Gauss Rifle should probably be a big gun, if the AMR is going to be one.
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On the topic of Big Guns repair.
FWE completely removed that problem, by allowing the player to use appropriate junk as repair parts. Sure, you'should need a ton of it, but it was a viable alternative solution to spending the last money you have on repairs,rather then a weapon mod.
At the same time, vendor repairs are kept relevant due to F3 repair mechanic
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There are also weapon repair kits, a character can buy (costs 20 to 30 caps) and even craft those (with the appropriate skill level) easily. In Fallout 3 there is also Alien Epoxy, which weights 0, repairs more with less repair skill and the player can keep getting those for free when Sally (every 24 hours I think) gives new items after the MZ DLC is finished (it is random if she gives 1-3 Epoxy and/or other items each time).
Repairing weapons in TTW is even easier than in just FNV (which is already easier than it was in FO3).
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Well, weapon condition degradation was always too high in FO3/FONV in any case. I've never seen weapons that needed so much repair! So I never felt bad about having things like weapon repair kits made at the workbench, and gun oil lying around that could "fix" your weapons. The gun oil in particular - most owners NEVER repair a weapon, EVER! They clean and oil the gun, and it lasts a lifetime. So I'd say to make cleaning and oiling replace current repair, and make ACTUAL weapon repair require special parts and/or an expert repairman. Yes, that's beyond the base game, and really ought to be a mod, so I'll stick with my gun oil, thank you very much.
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Gun oil is also a mod, it's part of RH Iron Sights.
Weapon Repair Kits are actually just like Alien Epoxy too, they reused the script for those.
The high degradation makes somewhat sense, you're using 200+ years old weapons for the most part and they are likely very worn and in poor shape overall. Also for economy reasons and mechanics reasons. It's a game, not a simulator.