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Puncherson_64LadyBrain_64

Many spoilers for the ending(s) of Fallout 4. We finally got there!

Butch:

Ok, played. And….I think I’m done? Am I done? I talked to Shaun, adopted pseudoShaun, blew up the Institute, got a cutscene, got a gold trophy, talked to people….no credits, but…..am I done?

And now we can talk about how games need HARD ENDINGS cuz if I’m done I’m annoyed.

Feminina:

I think that’s it, yeah. That’s where I got to, anyway. I could do some more quests, like “helping escaped synths” and “hunting down BoS remnants,” but they seem like just stuff to do if you still need to collect combat trophies or whatever. The story appears to be done.

And yeah, I kind of wanted it to be a bit more decisive so I at least KNOW for sure I’m not missing anything, but…I looked on the wiki and it doesn’t talk about anything further in terms of story.

I’m just going to imagine I walked into the sunset with synth Shaun and my six lovers.

Butch:

That’s IT? I mean, that cutscene didn’t even really say anything that was specific to the story. No “The BoS rebuilt to the west” or “Such and such settlement thrived” or or or. Other FO games you heard what happened to factions and NPCs. Remember Veronica’s sad end? Sad. This? What? WHAT?

If, after you thing ends, a player has to go online to ask a friend if it has, in fact, ended, that’s a BAD ending.

This GAME man. First I was annoyed at the endgame, then I was happy with the endgame, now I don’t even KNOW if it’s the endgame, and if it IS the endgame I’m annoyed.

Poof! It turned into Skyrim.

Which is, really, too bad.

Did you adopt Shaun? Cuz that, really, was the last bit of us/them, wasn’t it?

God DAMN it this game could have, SHOULD have had a hard ending.

And before Buttons chimes in with but DLC and continued support and trophies and shit, TW3 had a hard ending, and then you could go back and do stuff. But it ended. Boom. Credits. End. This….what is this?

Feminina:

I know. A lot of people online complained about it. It’s like, after all that debate over picking sides, in the end it doesn’t even MATTER who you support, because apparently it doesn’t make any difference to the Commonwealth.

Which is–maybe–making a point about war and sides and so forth, but which just seems implausible, because seriously, it doesn’t make any difference to anyone whether or not you blow up the Institute? Whether or not the Brotherhood takes over?

And at least show me some damn credits so I know that’s all I’m going to get, because I was vaguely feeling like “I should keep pursuing these wrap-up missions for a while and see if I hit a critical mass and then something actually HAPPENS”–but I don’t think that’s true. No one I’ve read on the forums has done it if so, anyway.

I don’t know if I adopted Shaun, exactly, but I rescued him and sent him to Sanctuary and told him I’d take care of him. I guess in my mind he’s not my son and never will be, but he’s a sentient being, like the other synths I wanted to help, and so I’ll help him. I wasn’t too psyched about Father’s message that “he’s been programmed to believe you’re his mother,” because–I didn’t ask for that, dude. But I suppose I’ll be nice to him and what not. It’s going to be really weird if he never ages, though, and I presume he won’t because…we blew up the Institute where all the technology to work on synths was. (Really not too sure that was a good call in the long run, Desdemona. We could probably have used that tech!)

Like, first you look for your baby, then you find out he’s about 10, then you find out he’s actually 60, so he lived his entire life without you–but as a consolation prize, take this replica kid who’ll NEVER grow up!

I tried interacting with Shaun, and he asked for a microscope, which I gave him because obviously I am the lootmaster and there were 5 stored in my workshop already, but it didn’t turn into a story, he just said something about using the parts to build things. Which is an interesting touch given that using parts to build things is what I do, and is something no one else can seem to manage (as we’ve frequently complained, no one ever builds beds or shacks or turret guns on their own), so there’s a sense of relationship between us there…but which still doesn’t really put a satisfying conclusion on the story.

I feel like the ending was this massive demonstration of human stupidity and self-destructiveness (kill everyone who opposes me! destroy everything they’ve built!), which, again, was maybe intentional, but which didn’t really FEEL intentional enough to be satisfying.

Meh.

Butch:

Maybe it is making a point. But at least give me some update on things. EVERY other FO game did that. That’s sort of the point of FO games in how they end. Even if it IS making a point. I mean, some of my companions said nice things. I talked to Nick and Piper and Garvey and they were talking about how they/everyone felt, but I had to DO that, and then they were done.

Which….. didn’t…. feel all that heavy.

And YES! Credits! Give people credit!

Were I being cynical, which, of course, I never am, I would say they did that to keep people playing until the DLC. But nooooooo.

And then, what ELSE were we going to do about synth Shaun? We worked to free everyone only to leave the kid who thinks we’re his mother to die? Awkward……

Not a satisfying wrap-up of your relationship. That COULD be setting something up for a sequel. In two, you’re playing as your own grandchild (provided you played one). But yeah. No ending.

Indeed, meh. I just plain don’t fucking like the idea of the endless game. I don’t. I get that people want to do all the stuff there is to do, get the trophies, whatever. But either do it as TW3 did (hard ending, make it clear that after the credits you are just fucking around) or give us New Game +, which I’ve never done, but ok, whatever. This? What IS this? None of my lovers even seemed to care that BOOM they are now adoptive parents of a robot. That’s almost as bad as my wife not noticing I killed 27 dragons and saved the world in Skyrim.

Which is too bad, because this is it for this game. I don’t feel the need to do more. Buttons says a game ends when you don’t play it anymore (which, by the way, I categorically reject), but using his definition I’m done. And it sucks that an otherwise very good, if not great, game is going to leave me with such a negative final impression.

Grumble.

I dunno. I think it was a solid 9/10. But I agree with all the folks that gave Game of the Year to Witcher 3 over this.

Well, hopefully Uncharted ends. I mean, UC4 is called “A Thief’s End,” so that’s promising.

Feminina:

Yeah, I talked to a couple of people, and it was nice to hear that they had a thought about what happened, but it didn’t make for a serious wrap up.

I also felt slightly cheated by the fact that the cutscene was obviously generic in that the character shown wasn’t me…I haven’t worn the Vault suit since I left 111, and that hasn’t been my hair since the first time I met a barber, so what do I care what this random woman is doing? The pre/post bomb contrast shots were interesting, and the overall message of “just got to keep going forward” or whatever was fine…and the fact that it was black and white to parallel the opening footage was a nice book-endy moment. It wasn’t awful.

Although for me, much more effective was just standing on that building and having to press that button and wash the mushroom cloud go up. (I’m sure it didn’t matter, but I wandered off and found a chair to sit in and waited two hours to give the Institute people time to evacuate–I’m sure you also ordered the evacuation using Shaun’s terminal?)

Serious flashback/bookend-y moment. A bomb is what brought me here, and now here I am detonating one myself. I did NOT feel great about myself at that point.

But I really also felt like kind of a victim of things that had spun out of my control. It wasn’t my fault! I was following orders/trying to do the right thing!

That’s always the excuse. War never changes, I suppose.

It DOES have a thematic consistency as an end, and I didn’t hate it, it just felt really…abrupt.

Butch:

I mean, it was better than Skyrim in that it was SOMETHING, but hardly a wrap. Not even in the way that FONV wrapped.

Hey, yeah! That did kinda suck about the cutscene. I totally didn’t notice that. I think it’s cuz I kept the “default” hairdo, so it fit a little better. I had a nicer ass in the cutscene, too.

I did order the Institute evacuated. Hope it worked. And yeah, that was good. So good, indeed, that it should have gone from that to cutscene, to wrap, to credits. Which is what I was expecting.

As for bookending, now, here’s the thing. Had we gone Institute, that’s NOT the end. I can’t imagine they’d blow themselves up. What’s the bookend?

War never changes. Nor does Bethesda. Is there any developer more frustrating? Just so…….AIEE!

Feminina:

To the internet! According to this Ultimate Endings Guide, you get the same cutscene for every faction, but if you side with the Institute, it starts when you’re beside Shaun’s deathbed, rather than with the blast.

Which is less bookendy since there’s no explosion, but I suppose is slightly bookendy in that you lose Shaun shortly after the game begins, and now you’re losing him again at the end…although that assumes you’ve actually formed some sort of bond with him that makes you CARE about this, which I never really did. But maybe if I’d sided with the Institute, it would be because I had, so it would feel right.

I didn’t trust him and he never gave me a good explanation for why he jerked me around like that, but I did CONSIDER siding with the Institute on the theory that as its director, I would be able to influence its actions–maybe change its entire approach to the Commonwealth, the surface, etc. But then I went to that directorate meeting and it was clear that I didn’t actually have the option to do anything the rest of them didn’t want me to do, and decided I couldn’t let down the rebel synths and the RR.

I did convince Shaun to help me in the end, promising to help the escaped Institute people get by in society, and in my head I’ll totally do that. They can go farm gourds in my settlements! And if any of the scientists are still alive, maybe I can put them to work doing something useful…who knows. I can have imaginary plans.

Butch:

I did the same thing.

That’s not much of a bookend. Though the crib did factor rather heavily in the cutscene and beginning bits. Maybe that?

Frustrating.

Now I have nothing to play. I don’t like starting a game the same day as I finish one. Gotta rest on it, you know?

And this is why I have whiskey.

Feminina:

Yeah, true…we could totally have drawn some connections between the crib and the bed. The promise of Shaun lying in his crib in his infancy, when the whole world was (a little) more hopeful and less spoiled–contrasted to the confusing, rather repellent Shaun dying in his bed in his old age, when the whole world is a blighted mess…hm.

The nuclear explosion was definitely more dramatic, but one might argue that the bed is more human. Which is interesting given the Institute’s interpretation of humanity and how they want to redesign it and all.

Well, whatever. They were too unappealing for me to support them.

I agree, I don’t like to pop out one disc and instantly put in another. One needs at least to sleep on the ending.

Take a night off. Have some whiskey. We can both start Uncharted tomorrow!

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