Post war US

General discussion of potential spoilers. Ask questions about or discuss storyline here.
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Post war US

Post by samoja » Sat Feb 10, 2018 9:05 pm

How much of post war US is desert? I mean we see there are still plants around aplenty, and since water did not go anywhere there should be vast forests and grassy plains, plants are way more resilient to mutation then animals are, they can even handle cross species pollination and grafting which would never work for animals. Yet in every game to date we see desert and more desert, with a little bit of growth here and there, is it just because post war survivors like to build their settlements in the desert for some strange reason or what?

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Yea, it's the one main

Post by jlf65 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 1:19 pm

Yea, it's the one main complaint I have about the Fallout series. If you look at any area abandoned by people due to heavy radiation contamination, the one thing they have in common is just how LUSH the vegetation is. One possible explanation is that the nuclear winter killed a LOT of vegetation over parts of the world, and it's only just spreading back into those places. The issue there is this is 200 years later, and things should have recovered by this point. That's one reason I like "green" mods for Fallout. Not only does that change the way the game looks entirely, I think it's a bit more realistic. Now the Mohave is a desert, plain and simple. It NEVER had much of anything. The DC area should have tons of grass and shrubs and even trees - remember, this is 200 years later; trees have had plenty of time to regrow... unless survivors are totally harvesting them, which is a distinct possibility.

Yu Narukaze
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Actually, most pre-War plant

Post by Yu Narukaze » Sun Feb 11, 2018 7:07 pm

Actually, most pre-War plant life was killed by the Black Rain around a week after the bombs dropped. Water contaminated by the byproducts of nuclear war can kill plants quite easily, as it turns out.

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There's probably some tools

Post by Mystical Panda » Sun Feb 11, 2018 7:58 pm

There's probably some tools that gives a performance 'hud' when developing, and after studying the real time results of many tests, they determine each scene or area can only have so many polys per cell (too many, and it starts to lag long before shadows and stuff are added), so they make sure it's under the engine limit. This can result in bleak or empty areas to account for npc rendering and other cpu (not just gpu) overhead.

On an aesthetic note... it adds to the feeling of emptiness or loneliness:

"In a world of seemingly nothing, I yet felt the ghost of something. Something long since past. Something, not born within my flesh or readily touched by my hand; something bound only within the fabric of my mind. A thought without image, long since past. A thought haunts me upon the very steps of my travels. The hope of a civilization long since past, now dust upon my eyes. A ghostly image of a people who now forever rest only within me."

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Yu Narukaze wrote:Actually,

Post by jlf65 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 10:00 pm

[quote=Yu Narukaze]Actually, most pre-War plant life was killed by the Black Rain around a week after the bombs dropped. Water contaminated by the byproducts of nuclear war can kill plants quite easily, as it turns out.


Yeah, but it doesn't last. Nuclear blasts don't make regions uninhabitable for long - Hiroshima was back to "normal" in less then 14 years. They even made a movie in Hiroshima in 1959. Plants were regrowing soon after the blast - long before people returned. Unless there's some continuing source of radioactive pollution (say, those barrels of toxic waste we see in the game here and there), the blast zone will be less than normal background radiation levels in only a couple decades. The in-game lore recognizes this on some level as the vaults were not meant to be close for more than a few decades, then release the inhabitants back into the world.

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Don't make the same mistake

Post by Risewild » Mon Feb 12, 2018 2:49 am

Don't make the same mistake many people do when talking about real world radiation and Fallout games radiation.

They are very different. If Fallout games had real-like radiation, ghouls would be impossible, people affected by severe radiation sickness couldn't move at all and would die very fast, most places that are still irradiated, wouldn't be because the radioactive isotopes would have decayed naturally. Those from atomic bombs/nuke blasts have a half life of around 50 years. No matter if you dropped 1 or 100 in the same place, the isotopes would have naturally decayed into nothing.

Radiation in Fallout follows the 50's retro-futurist formula. Where it was used in science fiction as a magic thing to do anything the author needed it to do. It could create monsters, allow people to live for longer, give super powers, allows even time travel, etc. It was a "anything is possible using radiation" shenanigans. cheeky

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I put trees in both the

Post by Nostalgia » Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:44 am

I put trees in both the Mohave and DC. They add so much to the scenery! Nature is extremely resilient.

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Well, I put them in DC in

Post by jlf65 » Mon Feb 12, 2018 1:30 pm

Well, I put them in DC in some games. Never in the Mohave - it's a desert, after all. Never had trees in the first place!

Maybe if they were only added near the lake or the river...

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Plant life obviously was not

Post by Decker » Mon Feb 12, 2018 5:03 pm

Plant life obviously was not completely removed in the Fallout setting lore - Depends on locale, weather patterns and so forth. F1 and F2 take place in areas which naturally were mostly deserts before the Great War, and had been made green in some areas by manmade irrigation systems. No surprise then that post war F1 and F2 environs were desertlike, as was their original natural state. Indeed FNVs Mojave is not that much different from pre-war mojave plant-wise, always was a desert. Fallout 4 has yellowish grass all over the place and no leaves in the trees, which prettymuch looks like Boston region in the autumn - It often gets fairly cold there in autumn and winter months IRL too - If anything, Fallout 4 is missing snow coverage for the winter months which does occur IRL. Only game in the series of Fallout CRPGs which fails reality checking with vegetation actually is Fallout 3 - It seems way too dead overall plantwise for the region, this is never properly explained in the games lore.

While not to be considered realistic, Fallout's way to handle radiation is at least plausible on some level. Note that IRL radiation sickness can have varying degrees of symptoms depending on type, amount and rate of radiation absorbed by the body. Very rapid large dose may not even initially feel like anything much more than a sunburn perhaps - It can take some time for any actual symptoms to show, perhaps like an hour or so of 'I feel perfectly fine' followed by rapidly worsening sickness of 'I wish I was dead' variety and horribly miserable and messy death only hours or a few days later. AFAIK, most plants can survive doses considerably higher than humans.

What the Fallout setting really changes is having scifi-magic effective anti-radiation medicines like Rad-X and especially Radaway, which can completely heal any and all radiation damage sustained - No real world medicine like Radaway exists IRL, at best realworld medicines can slightly reduce the effective absorbed dosage. Significant IRL radiation exposures always leave an unhealable scar of lifetime radiation history, which increases cancer risk and permanently damages reproductive cells.

About ghouls etc; If we go by the original lore from Fallout 1, ghouls are a result of both less than lethal long term radiation exposure as well as raw airborne FEV infection (which can work through an immune system already weakened by the radiation). FEV is not quite in the same realm of scifi-magic as Fallouts radiation medicines; Scary thing about FEV is that it is actually plausibly based on IRL scientific principles such as DNA/RNA chains, genetic sequence scissoring etc. Rapidly genetically altering an adult living beings physiology with viruses is not possible today, but it is not at all an impossible future biotech development.. Ghouls, supermutants and FEV mutated invasive animal species are actually way more plausible than most people would think at the first glance.


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Ghouls are only caused by

Post by Risewild » Tue Feb 13, 2018 2:48 am

Ghouls are only caused by radiation. This was decided by the creators of Fallout after they decided that was the best way. So the canon is that they are only created by radiation.

Not to mention that Harold was mutated by FEV but he himself says he is not a ghoul (he's a FEV mutant), although he looks like one (further proof that the creators decided only radiation can create real ghouls). He also says that Ghouls are created by radiation (and not radiation + FEV).

Chris Taylor supported the idea that ghouls were made by a combination of radiation and FEV, Chris Avellone agreed with that at first, but then changed his mind and declared that only radiation made ghouls, Tim Cain always said ghouls are only made from radiation. In the end the official canon is that ghouls are only made from radiation. It is still like that in Bethesda's and Obsidian's game lore. wink

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