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FO4: A Character Building Conundrum

  • March 2

    So having played Fallout 4 for a little while I felt that this was a topic worth discussion from the Wasteland Travellers here in the Vault.  There have been several threads and discussions on various topics including Roleplaying and Settlement Building and these have all been very good discussions and given a lot of fat to chew on when thinking about FO.  I touched on the basis of this post in an answer I gave in one of those threads but felt it might warrant some additional discussion.

    We know that the linear progression of Fallout 4, along with the "hard coded" voice overs, make imprinting on your character rather difficult.  Nothing like wanting to play a tough bitch that would stomp on a cat turning around and going, "I need help finding my baby" in a sad, emotional voice over.  Ugh, talk about breaking immersion. 

    We know that some of the DLC is really geared away from the basic game (and other DLCs) in playing an evil based raider (to get the most out of the DLC content) which flies directly in the face of the character that the base game pushes.

    So all of these items and concerns are certainly in play when creating a character.  The other topic brought up and discussed a little is basic, generic characters (thanks to Paul I believe for that one).  Basically the discourse is that you can reach Level 100 so in essense all characters end up looking much the same when it comes to perks and you just put a different jacket on them for a separate color palette...to use an analogy.  You also end up using mostly the same weaponry since weapons don't really appear to scale with leveling.  I mean if you use pistols then Deliverer is basically the best one in the game so you'd be crazy to contemplate using a .38 special bolt gun after you hit the Railroad quest line.

    So in thinking about Skyrim CB where we don't have many of these issues (no voice overs, harder to level, not able to take all perks by level 40 on average, etc) and wanting to follow the path I've gone in Skyrim CB where I delve more into the Roleplaying aspect of a character to try and make him unique I wanted to open a dialogue for the Fallout CB group to discuss this very topic here.

    One of the easiest things to do in Skyrim, for example, was to limit certain abilities; in particular the crafting skills which many people didn't care for and in many ways made the game too easy.  Well, how to apply that in Fallout?

    In looking at my character building setup the first thing I noticed was you cannot take less than the 28 starting points in your SPECIAL.  This was the first idea, to cripple yourself in your SPECIAL, but the game prevents that...to an extent.  So what you can do is place the bulk of your SPECIAL in categories that do not benefit you directly from a PERK standpoint.  Example, you really want that stealthy, VATS character so you know you'll likely want high Agility.  Well, give yourself 1 point in agility and put the rest into STR and CHAR (for carrying junk and Settlement building).  You won't actually take many/any perks in those two categories BUT you will now need to factor in adding raw AGIL skill ups as your level to reach the perks you want in that category.  So say you want Ninja, well that is a Level 7 AGIL perk, if you start with 1 then that means six levels of just upping your AGIL skill rather than getting the perk straight away.  This will further reduce the total number of actual perks you can take which starts to bring more definition and limitation to a character.

    Another possibility is using the SPECIAL Calculator but then NOT taking every level up that you are allowed to.  Set a max number of perks as we did in Skyrim at say, level 30 or 40 giving two different "difficulty" levels for the same character.  You may still play to level 100 but you'll show 60 points available in your Pip-Boy that will just languish there.  This causes you to put more thought into the tree that you build for your character and makes you really consider the flow and connectivity of those perks with each other. 

    They always say the worst setup for a character is 4-5 ratings across the board.  Well, wouldn't that be a regular everyday guy or gal?  Use that as a start point in a build and then incorporate some other "limiting" strategies as you play.

    Anyway, I thought this would be a good topic for discussion since a few of us are into FO: CB right now on how to get some more variation into the builds and not all end up in a grey glop of every build looking mostly similar as we've seen previously noted. 

  • Member
    March 2
    I have more thoughts but before I talk about them two questions. Have you tried survival mode yet? And do you use mods John?
  • March 2
    I have not tried survival mode. I don't have the patience to never fast travel. Lol And I do use mods and since the recent update I have been having a lot more crashes or the game just freezes on the loading screen like when I open the door and move into a room so I do quick save a lot just to avoid issues with that.
  • Member
    March 2
    Survival mode totally changes how you play the game and is a great way to completely change how you play, the challenges you face, and the equipment you use. There are mods that allow you to save while playing other than sleeping in a bed which I think would be a great option for you from the sounds of it. I highly highly suggest giving it a try if you are feeling burnt out on regular. Mods can also make a big difference but it sounds like maybe you have too many installed or are not using a good mod organizer or load order organizer which if you are not I would also suggest. One idea I can give you that I have thought about doing as a series is 'mini-playthroughs' that use the mod that allows an alternate start (like the Skyrim version), and doing smaller regional based playthroughs that don't focus on big quest lines and instead go more towards that role play. Instead of the sole survivor you are a fisherman in the northeast Commonwealth traveling up and down the coast avoiding things like downtown Boston. Or you are a Far Harbor resident looking to help your fellow residents of the docks. Or you are a raider cutting your teeth raiding the southern settlements with grand plans to maybe one day start your own gang. Equip accordingly, build a settlement or two accordingly and enjoy the setting and environment for the beautiful game it is rather than the quests we have all done a hundred times.
  • March 2

    That's a cool idea, the regional stuff.  I've got a WIP as a farmer developing a big farmer co-op across the commonwealth right now.

    I'm not burned on the game by any stretch, just taking some discussion points I've read elsewhere and from what I'm seeing/experiencing along the same lines and trying to generate some discussion how to best attack them.

    I use NMM for my mods and mod loading.  counting all the dlcs and the patch(s) I have 29 items in my load list.  Not too many I don't think when I hear some are running over 100.  LOL

  • Member
    March 2
    Hmm I'm not sure why you are getting all the crashes. Sounds like a load order issue. Are you using LOOT to organize your mods? At least I think it's LOOT, I'm not home so I can remember the program that does mod order for Fallout. That said I think this topic is a good idea and would be curious as to other people's thoughts and idea on the discussion.
  • March 2

    It's not a CTD.  It's just a freeze when I have zone changes (entering buildings, etc).  Actually seems this is not that unnatural with FO4 from google searches.

  • Member
    March 2
    Huh, odd, in about 1000 hours of gameplay I don't think I have had this....at least not enough to make note of. That sucks. :/