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Minor spoilers for Curie’s transformation quest


Didn’t play much, but did get the creepy Nick stuff, then made Curie human. She’s cute, too! Three cuties in a Bethesda game! Though it would have been neater to have her be a romanceable robot.

But here’s a thing: Again, with that particular sequence, I had to interact with someone I met through the RR who knew me from the RR. Big long conversation. You did not know this person when you did the human bit, so how did it go down for you?

The real crisis is that I can’t for the life of me remember where I put the silver shroud armor. Do I need the armor to do the missions?


I assume you mean the caretaker for G5-19’s body? I just met her last night at RRHQ. I hadn’t met her when she let us take the synth body for Curie, so we didn’t really have much of a conversation other than me saying it was her choice and her deciding it would be what G5-19 would want, but when I ran into her last night she said something like “I just hope it’s what G5-19 would have wanted” and I had a persuade check to say “with Curie’s scientific expertise, she can do a lot of good in the world” or something. Which I guess made her feel better (anyway, I got the persuade XP).

I don’t THINK you need the armor to do the Silver Shroud stuff. I put it on, just because I had it, but only at the last minute. You probably have the ‘calling cards’ that you need to leave on the body to say the Shroud did it (somewhere in miscellaneous…I didn’t even realize I had them until I killed the guy and the screen asked “leave calling card?”), and I think that’s the most important bit. I mean, it doesn’t make that much difference to the person you kill whether or not you’re wearing fancy armor, right? Telling OTHER people that the Shroud did it is more critical to establishing the mystique.


That’s the one. Did you learn much else about her? And did you meet the…..robot? Cuz I want to talk about the robot.

Ah, crap. I really wonder where the Shroud armor is. I was with Curie when I got it, and I THINK I took everything off her robot body there, but now I’m stressed. Where the hell is it?


P.A.M? I met her, but she didn’t really want to talk to me. She muttered something like “your arrival was not predicted” and ran off. Assaultrons are always running. (Except for KL-E-0, who just stands there peddling guns.) I read about her at the donut shop, though. She sounded interesting.


Ah. Yes. Her. (There we go with genders)

If by interesting you mean she can predict/prevent/start nuclear war.

She’s….I ponder PAM. She fits into themes. She is “other” even among other robots. She is superior to everyone. She was created a slave, but is freeing her a good idea?

PAM is going to matter.

Also, her greeting, that you quote, is on the list of reasons I believe we are not privy to shit. She can, by her own admission, predict the future. But she didn’t predict us. See, I took away that “your” wasn’t just “Who the hell are you?” but “I know who you are and you’re not supposed to be here.” And if my reading is correct, then a) how does she know and b) where are we supposed to be?

Indeed, when I asked “Do you know me?” she dodged the question.


Well, the program was referred to as ‘her’ in the terminal texts in the Slocum Joe’s basement, right? (Though not without some pushback.) I was going with their precedent, plus the Assaultron body, I suppose. Also the name ‘Pam’ is commonly female in this culture, so in all, it was pretty much inevitable.

I’ll have to try harder to actually talk to her next time I go there. Right now I’m out with Deacon looking for a dead drop. Oh yay, someone else to assign me missions it will take me forever to get around to completing!

How does she know and where should we be…maybe she had access to Vault-Tec records, and we should be dead? Or to Institute records and we should be…dead, or with the Institute or something. But really the most plausible thing we should be instead of here is ‘dead,’ I think. That whole being frozen for 210 years and then emerging when everyone else in the vault (except Shaun) is dead could be seen as a major plot twist to someone watching the whole thing unfold over the centuries.

I want to set PAM up with Admiral Ironsides. I bet they’d have a lot to discuss.


Oh! I was gonna do the dead drop tonight! That and explore Good Neighbor with Cait. And hit on Curie (which I got to do. She’s cute.) BUUUT as soon as I went back to GET Cait (no one seemed to notice that Curie was, well, human) Garvey was all “There’s something at the castle,” and a quest started, and it’s one you get a trophy for doing so it’s not a settlement.

Fucking Garvey.

By the way, what do we make of the fact that Curie, who isn’t really human, keeps talking about herself as human? And harping on breathing and all? We’ve talked much about who is and who isn’t US, and she now considers herself us, even though, technically, she’s just MORE like us THAN us.

Add to that her accent. Are we saying you can come to America, and love America, but always be “different” even if YOU think you’re not?

Go back and talk to PAM. She had that annoying thing you get with companions sometimes when you’re trying to talk and they don’t sit still and lining it up to hit triangle takes forever. She has a lot to say. She’s a lot smarter than that.


Speaking of Garvey, and as a sign of how tenacious he is, the other day I saw Mr. O’ playing and he was just working at a workbench in Sanctuary, not even TALKING to Garvey, and Garvey was like “a settlement needs help. I’ve marked it on your map.”

He will give you missions EVEN IF YOU DON’T TALK TO HIM. Just walking by him is enough! Mr. O’ was like “that’s it, I’m not coming back to Sanctuary Hills anymore.” He’s apparently already done a ton of Garvey’s neverending missions and is over them.

Curie is an interesting case. As you say, she’s not actually human (in fact, as a dreaded synth, many would consider her much less tolerable than while she was a robot), but she’s SO into the various aspects of humanity. To her it must certainly feel as if she’s a lot closer to human.

Maybe this fear and hatred of synths is sort of about a mental version of the uncanny valley…things that are SO CLOSE to human but not quite there and make everyone instinctively nervous. Or maybe it’s the fact that the Institute controls them and they could shoot a bunch of people at a noodle shop with no warning.

Not that humans couldn’t do that too. Probably in the Waste, as in real life, you’re much more likely to be killed by a human than by an AI.


Oh fuck that guy. Cluttering up my quest list when I’m just chilling? Ok. He’s off to help Oberland Station. Clean that up for me.

No disco ball for him anymore.

Dude, don’t ditch Sanctuary Hills. Mr. O’ must have 72 settlements. Pick one, tell him go there. Done.

Curie thinks she is human. Did anyone tell her she’s not? There’s a lot of precedent of synths thinking they’re human.

I think it goes to “fear of the other.” When she was a robot, she was REALLY other. To harp on the immigrant thing, there’s lots of folks that don’t mind Mexican people….in Mexico. Once they come here, however, things change. When she was a robot, she was, metaphorically, in Mexico. Easy to spot, easy to avoid, easy to dismiss. Now she’s “here,” hard to spot. Taking our gourd farming jobs. Stealing our girlfriends! Still the other, but too close for comfort. Much like immigrants THINK that they’re more American when they ARE American, but the racists here fear them MORE when they’re American.

And does the Institute even control them? We assume they do. But we heard ONE story of a terrorist, per se, shooting up a noodle shop. Thinking they’re all like that, or even that the Institute DID that, is sort of like saying “Well, Muslims all MUST answer to calls for jihad, right? It’s…like…religious.” Thinking Muslims must answer to bin Laden flicking a switch is silly, even if some do. We heard one story of a 9/11 in Diamond City and BOOM we assume “they” can make any of them shoot people with no warning.

But yeah, humans are the bigger threat in practice. Much like you’re far more likely to be killed by your fellow Americans than any middle easterner. Shit, stats show you’re MOST likely to be killed by your spouse. And yet we fear the “other.”


Yeah, I don’t think it’s at all clear that the Institute actually has a switch in every synth’s head. People are definitely afraid they do, and it seems at least plausible because, you know, programming!–but you’re absolutely right: in our own experience so far, we’ve been attacked by way more humans and super mutants than synths, and as you said recently, in general the synths are guarding a specific, usually interior location (so we could potentially avoid conflict by staying out of their building), while raiders and super mutants will frequently just attack you for walking by, or attack your peaceable settlements.

I personally have been killed a lot more times by humans than by synths in this game. (Although never by my spouse. Probably because Kellogg got him first.)

Which to my mind strengthens our “judge each synth on its merits” position, but yeah…fear of the Other is strong and frequently not susceptible to logic.


Because metaphor!

It’s kinda amazing that I was genuinely worried this game had nothing to say. I think it has some stuff to say.

Except Garvey. He really has nothing much to say.


But maybe he’s a metaphor for the constant nagging demands of day-to-day life, which wear you down so much that sometimes it’s just easier to revert to mob instinct and Fear the Other! Damn it, another troubled settlement?! THE OTHER must be to blame!!!

Metaphors within metaphors.


You’re reaching, but given the nature of what we’ve been writing for more than a year, reaching is fine. Expected, even.


Better to reach and fall short than not have a 3,000-word post on an philosophically important topic.

We’re actually short today, but…it’s Friday.