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Brains and Brawn--Robert House

  • Mr. likes this
  • May 4, 2016

    Brains and Brawn: Robert House


    enigmatic, all-seeing, and a relic of another time


    I. A Primer on House’s Origins


    Though he was born into a rich family, Robert Edwin House was unable to enjoy any of the potential benefits of this status. At a young age, both of his parents were killed in an accident, and he was unable to receive any of the possible inheritance, when he was cheated out of it by his half-brother.

    For college, House attended the prestigious Commonwealth Institute of Technology, or CIT. For reference, the ruins of the CIT are the place of origin for the Institute from Fallout 4. 

    After college, Mr. House’s entrepreneurial spirit took over, and he became the figure we know him as today. Taking controlling portions in multiple companies, he became effectively a 21st century robber baron. Notable companies include the RobCo robotics company, his own creation, and the Lucky 38 Casino, which would become his refuge later in life.

    Like any rich eccentric, House had his share of odd, unique hobbies. One of these was the constant running of mathematical simulations. Using powerful computers, he discovered a terrible truth--the chances of total nuclear war between the US and China were innumerably high. Taking this data, he prepared in a way fit only for a man of his wealth. With his knowledge of electronics (he did, after all, run a company dedicated to robotics), he created a network of satellites and laser (the latter of which he had placed along the top of his new fortress at the Lucky 38) that were arranged to stop the multitude of nukes aimed at his city of Las Vegas. Needless to say, it worked, and House took up a new role in the wastes, that of the leader of New Vegas. Along with his robot army and rehabilitated raider lackeys, he sought to maintain Vegas as a living example of Pre-War life, at almost any cost.


    II. House’s Impact


    Now comes the interesting part, my opinions on all of this. I will try to, as concisely as possible, outline the exact characteristics that made House so impactful, and also his true impact on the Wasteland itself. This article, and those following it, will take the form of a basic research essay that some (or many) of you may have seen in your time in school.

    For those of you unfamiliar with this format, it is: Thesis statement. First support, second support, third support. Conclusion. Now let’s get onto the meat of the article…


    Robert House was an influential figure in the Post-War wasteland because of his large army, unique vision for the wasteland, and ability to negotiate with disparate peoples.

    Though his immense smarts would be useful in any situation, including post-nuclear Vegas, a smart mind is often incapable of defending themselves adequately. This is why House, the founder of the prolific RobCo company, created his personal army. The army, made of his own Securitrons, are one of many reasons why he was able to maintain the small city-state of New Vegas. The introduction cinematic to Fallout: New Vegas states that “the New Vegas Strip has stayed open for business under the control of its mysterious overseer, Mr. House, and his army of rehabilitated Tribals and police robots.” This quote cites the Securitron army as one of two major reasons for the un-destroyed status of House’s city, New Vegas. These Securitrons are armed with submachine guns and grenade launchers, giving one Securitron the same amount of weaponry as two to three NCR soldiers, with the ratio being even higher when compared to the slave army of the Legion. However, when upgraded to the Mk. 2 operating system, these Securitrons become even more powerful, now armed with a gatling laser and shoulder-mounted missile launcher. These new weapons now put their level of deadliness on par with the famous NCR Heavy Troopers, who often wield miniguns and incinerators. This means that, despite the lower numbers of Securitrons, they can still outgun the outstretched NCR, and the individually weak Legion army. It may be thought that these lower numbers make each dead Securiton a greater loss, meaning that each killed robot is a greater volume of loss (think the American Civil War, where the CSA inflicted more casualties, but could also afford less casualties due to their lower population base). However, this is remedied by the addition of auto-repair systems, capable of making even a highly-damaged Securitron viable for combat.

    While most groups or factions in post-war America were tribally focused, as if the bombs had sent them back 5000 years, Robert House sought to maintain exactly what he had had before the war--a peaceful space to live in. With this vision, he sent out his above-mentioned Securitrons to secure the post-apocalyptic Vegas. This vision is also the reason House was able to acquire the ownership of Vault 21. Using his great mind, he was also able to stimulate the burgeoning economy of New Vegas. In his own words, “Written into the treaty were provisions that the NCR do nothing to prevent its soldiers and civilians from visiting the Strip. That's how I harnessed the NCR to my endeavor. Their occupation has been the engine of my growing economy." Here, House was able to use his power of negotiation (which will be discussed further in the following paragraph) for personal gain, as well as for the benefit of his sovereignty. The NCR originally wished to allow their troops access only to Camp McCarran and Hoover Dam, as well as any other bases they had. House knew, though, that a large influx of lonely and thirsty (in both senses of the word) soldiers would prove the boost he needed to truly get the recently rebuilt New Vegas off the ground, especially in the casinos and Gomorrah, which offers a certain service that is not often available to a soldier on the move.

    One may assume that a smart mind is incapable or less able to talk and make deals with other parties, but in House’s case, this was simply not true. When the NCR arrived, House prepared for war. However, he was able to avoid conflict due to his deft negotiation skills: “NCR forces were permitted to occupy Hoover Dam and establish a military base at McCarran Airport...They recognized my sovereignty over the Vegas Strip and agreed to supply electricity and water once their engineers repaired the dam.” In these negotiations, he allowed the NCR to control Hoover Dam, while still keeping a large portion of the power. That meant that, were there an attack on the Dam (as there was), the outcome of the battle would not immediately affect New Vegas, and it also prevented “unnecessary” losses to House’s Securitron army. By confining the NCR army to these areas, House was also able to make it easier to monitor the rapidly expanding, and often unfriendly, NCR.

    House’s skills in negotiation can also be seen through his talks with the NCR. In few other cases had the NCR ever made a mutual treaty, and their expansionist ideologies rarely allowed for peaceful co-existence. The fact that one of the only times such provisions were ever made was when the NCR faced House is a testament to his ability.

    Another testament is House’s rehabilitation of the Three Tribes of New Vegas. These tribes, one of them cannibalistic, were turned into a supplementary military force, as well as the managers of his casinos. Able to turn basic tribals into a trustworthy (mostly) force and a military backup is a feat most leaders would be incapable of completing.

    Ultimately, though House often relied on others to complete his dirty work, that is to be expected of an over two hundred year old man. And, often his usage of these outside sources required effort on his part. Robert House, CEO of RobCo and governor of the New Vegas Strip, was influential on the wasteland because of his personal army, immense brainpower and vision, and skills in negotiation.

    III. Bibliography

    Robert House (Wiki)

    Securitron (Wiki)

    Fallout: New Vegas Intro (Wiki/In-Game)

    Robert House Dialogue (In-Game/Gamepedia)

    IV. Closing Thoughts

    Thanks to anyone who read this 1400-word mess of an essay. I hope this helped educate any readers on Mr. House, and that it all made sense. I wrote parts of this at different times, so if there's anything that doesn't make sense or fit together, I'd appreciate a pointer.

    PCTY Out.

  • Member
    May 4, 2016

    great read bro, and I forgot that he was in CIT.

  • November 21, 2017

    This is a pretty nice read, man.