This character profile is part of a chronological series, and is intended to be read right after the first profile.
Said chronological series goes :
- We suggest first reading the Jolene Hassan profiles, in no small part because they have the setting information. Also, there’s a continuity between FO1 and FO2.
- The Chosen One (Alessa-Maria Hassan) (Profile #1 – Arroyo).
- The Chosen One (Alessa-Maria Hassan) (Profile #2 – Vic).
- The Chosen One (Alessa-Maria Hassan) (Profile #3 – Safe in Vault City).
- The Chosen One (Alessa-Maria Hassan) (Profile #4 – Biggest little city in the world).
- The Chosen One (Alessa-Maria Hassan) (Profile #5 – Take California).
- The Chosen One (Alessa-Maria Hassan) (Profile #6 – The trouble with the tribal).
These profiles represent a Fallout 2 Restoration Project modded game. That and the Unofficial Patch and HD Patch are the preferred approach nowadays, unless you’re driven to have the purest retro experience. The Player Character was modded, too, as discussed in this profile.
The narration has some detail to it. I assume that there are people who’d like to experience the story of this classic game without having to struggle at length with the dated interface and design, or without watching hours and hours of video let’s play.
Or at least one version of the story, since Fallout 2 was a relatively early example of an “open world” game. Different playthroughs will be different.
- This profile features a sample or customized Player Character – see our video games writeups FAQ for more.
- This profile assumes a specific video game playthrough – see our video games writeups FAQ for more.
- This profile features tabletop RPG mechanics about the video game’s gameplay – see our video games writeups FAQ for more.
- This profile features non-canon hypotheses about in-game events and mechanics – see our video games writeups FAQ for more.
- Real Name: Alessandra-Maria Hassan.
- Other Aliases: The Chosen One, the Human Radscorpion.
- Marital Status: Single.
- Known Relatives: Jolene Hassan (grandmother, probably deceased), Patrick O’Day (grandfather, deceased), Maeve Hassan (mother, deceased), Morlis Stalking Hound (aunt), “El Hidalgo” José Suarez da Caridad Stalking Hound (father), Santiago Hassan (younger brother), Nagor Sun High In Sky (cousin), Feargus Stalking Hound (nephew).
- Group Affiliation: Arroyo Tribals.
- Base of Operations: Mobile.
- Height: 5’5″ Weight: 128 lbs.
- Eyes: Brown Hair: Black
Powers & Abilities
The Chosen One has begun to rapidly sharpen, develop and adapt her existing skills to the greater world. She is no longer operating from a tiny, isolated village with limited resources. She doesn’t learn new skills at this stage though – she just sharpens and adapts her existing skills base, and learns about the world.
Based on her grandmother’s advice (via her mother), Alessandra-Maria systematically photographs and records things she doesn’t understand, using her PIP-Boy. This is stored for later review.
The beauty of our weapons, part 1
Procuring better weapons, and ammunition, is a top priority for the Chosen One. At this stage, she procures (in chronological order) :
- A 10mm pipe rifle, until she finds….
- A 10mm semi-automatic pistol on a dead trapper, killed by mutant rats. Until she buys…
- A Dan Wesson .44 magnum snub-nosed revolver with a very poorly calibrated laser sight. The iron sights were sawn off, and it was generally filed and tinkered with to facilitate fast-draws.
- A surplus Dragunov marksman’s rifle with a shattered and utterly useless scope, but decent iron sights. This weapon was part of a batch converted to fire 5.56mm ammunition, making it quite valuable since such rounds remain abundant in the USA.
Alessa removed the scope, realigned the iron sights, used leather wraps to “repair” the damaged stock, and had it blessed by Sulik’s Grampy Bone.
(In-game these are simply a .44 revolver and a hunting rifle. The description of the .44, in particular, rationalises its odd stats in Fallout 2.)
See our Fallout Weapons Locker article for a lot more about post-apocalyptic weaponry.
The beauty of our weapons, part 2
Early on her stock of ammunition has to be watched closely. The Chosen One occasionally drops into the single digits for both 10mm rounds and .44 magnum rounds stocks.
At this point she carries the 10mm and the .44 in Old West-style thigh holsters. The point is to transition to the 10mm when she needs to spare her stock of .44.
Once she buys the Dragunov, she buys a 150-round box along with it and ammunition conservation ceases to be a problem. 5.56mm rounds can be bought in large quantities, and having the rifle means that she burns through less .44 ammunition than she can reasonably buy.
The rifle is her primary, while the magnum is ideal for CQB work and self-defense. The Dragunov hangs under her right shoulder, suspended by the shoulder stock to a leather shoulder plate. It can also be shifted under her back and attached to her belt, in a sort of climber’s carry position. The magnum is in a fast-draw holster on her left hip, with a leather lanyard.
Though it’s mostly done with leather and some climbing equipment, it looks quite optimised, reliable and professional. The designs actually come from Brotherhood of Steel tactical webbings, based on models used before the Great Silence by US Special Forces units. These were part of Jolene Hassan‘s archives memorised by Alessandra-Maria.
None of the tribals had any idea where Vault 13 was hidden. However, a roving merchant had once sold them plastic containers clearly stamped with Vault 13’s number. The tribals prized those for being related to their semi-mythical Vault 13 origins, as well as being bloody useful in a low-tech environment.
The Elder saw this as a clue. Finding the merchant — one Vic — would provide more clues about where the containers were found. She knew that he came from Klamath , a burg a few days’ travel to the East.
Upon reaching Klamath, the Chosen One learned some important things :
- Many higher-tech people saw tribals with open contempt, as impoverished primitive scum.
- Though poor in absolute terms, Klamath people were indeed richer than the tribals and had some access to nice things, such as low-end firearms.
- There was a market for mercenary troubleshooters.
- Vic had gone missing.
It was clear that travelling much further with but a spear would end badly. But Alessa knew of a dwelling that was unoccupied… Vic’s. Through endless patience and steady hands, she deduced how to disarm the trapped door and break into Vic’s shack. There she could “borrow” much-needed supplies, including a crude firearm.
This in turn made it possible to take on simple mercenary jobs to get money. Alessa started by dealing with murderous mutant rat attacks. She reasoned that she could also cook and eat the rats – and that most giant rats could be speared to spare ammunition.
Allies of fortune
Klamath was but an impoverished clump of hovels, almost entirely dependent on trapping mutant geckos and selling the skins. However, it provided the Chosen One with a small, easily digestible experience of the higher-tech life. It also unexpectedly brought two allies.
The first was “Fighting” John L. Sullivan , and Irish-American local and retired heavyweight boxer. Friendly by nature, he noticed that the visiting tribal girl was a trained fighter and offered sparring and training. Ms. Hassan was extremely interested in the basics of American-style boxing, and Mr. Sullivan also gave her a sense of what sorts of martial arts existed out there for her to learn.
The other was a fellow tribal named Sulik. He, too, was on a quest and looking for Vic, as the itinerant trader was one of the few contacts with the “civilised” world for many tribals. Sulik was looking for his missing sister. He thought she had been taken by slavers, and that Vic could explain to him which slaver organisations operated in the area.
Sulik’s temper had gotten him in trouble in Klamath, and he was serving a sort of community work sentence. But Alessa had him freed so the much more experienced Sulik could accompany her in her travels.
I have a pistol now. Ho ho ho.
In Klamath, Alessa (eventually with Sulik’s help) learned to function as a freelance troubleshooter. It was a good way to earn caps to afford much-needed equipment and survive the wasteland.
Beyond exterminating the murderous mutant rodents and their king, she :
- Rescued one Smiley, a trapper who had bitten on more than he could chew. This then allowed her to secure Sulik’s freedom in return. The old trapper also trained Alessa to skin geckos, and the young tribal took numerous high-res photos of the machines in the odd bunker Mr. Smiley had found refuge in.
- Shot herself a path through aggressive mutant geckos so production of the local hooch could resume. The beasts had settled near the shack housing the still. The skins sold well.
- Eliminated some mutant scorpions threatening the local mutant cows. Hassan then discovered that two local ne’er-do-wells where rustling the precious livestock. Alessa promptly murdered them so she could loot their hovel. She then provided enough evidence that the dead men were rustlers for the community leaders to approve of this “execution”.
- Met a local prostitute. Vic was one of her regulars, and she was fairly sure that he was currently in a richer, but far more dangerous burg called the Den. She also explained that the Den was a better place to buy guns, as nobody in Klamath could afford a serious firearm.
Hive of scum and villainy
The Den was indeed a livelier, far more dangerous place than Klamath. The key local feature were narcotics, with a staggering percentage of the locals being junkies. This in turn made the local businesses influential, as addicts would do anything to get caps and pay for their next dose.
It took a few days for the tribal to realise that Vic was held by the local chapter of the Slavers’ Guild. A good part of the delay was a sharp focus on finding ways to pay for better guns. Alessa was fascinated by a snub-nosed .44 magnum revolver and a .223 semi-auto rifle sold by the local guns runner and self-proclaimed “good samurai-itan”.
Local adventures included :
- Running errands for mini-casino owner Becky, who took a liking to Hassan.
- Putting to rest what very much seemed like a ghost. The dead little girl was looking for her prized locket. Alessa eventually determined that a local punk had stolen it from its hiding place. After lethally repossessing it, the tribal gave it to the ghost and buried the bones.
Sulik seemed unsurprised by the ghost, as his bone charm had told him that another “bone spirit” needed help in the Den. Coming from an animist background, both Alessa and Sulik considered a ghost a rare but normal part of the world.
Years later, Alessa-Maria would hypothesis that both the dead little girl and Sulik’s Grampy Bone were some kind of psionic consciousness remnant attached to human bones.
- Becoming a friend of “Mom”, the kind and aged owner of the local dinner. Alessa just liked her rat stew, rat loafs and rat pies. The tribal greatly helped “Mom” set up a rag-tag orphanage because heh, free rat stew ! And free rat pies.
- Allying with a small gang led by one Lara, and playing a critical role in helping them overcome a rival gang.
- Meeting Vic at the slaver’s guild, and helping him mollify his jailers who wanted him to repair a broken radio.
But the Chosen One then ran into an obstacle. The slaver boss wanted more money to let go of Vic than Alessa was comfortable paying. Furthermore, after talking to Vic Sulik strongly suspected that these very slavers were also the ones who had kidnapped his missing sister.
Now I have a rifle. Oh oh oh.
The Slavers conducted themselves with the swagger of men used to attacking spear-wielding tribals while armed with guns. Surveying the buildings around the Slaver’s Guild, Alessa decided to take on all of them by herself and sell the loot.
With some preparation (in particular when it came to accessing roofs, and pre-placed cover) and with the semi-automatic rifle she had just bought, the Chose One could trigger a sniper situation for the slavers. In such a long-range battle her rifle gave her an obvious advantage.
Furthermore a sniper/countersniper exchange of fire favoured the most patient, accurate, sharp-sighted, cold-blooded and collected party. And there was little doubt as to whom that would be. Several nerve-wracking hours later, all slavers were dead.
(In-game this is actually done through mastery of the tactical system and NPC AI, plus taking breaks in the middle of battle to go eat at Mom’s and refill hit points . But again, we’re slightly adapting the narration to filter out the video game logic.)
Vic and all other slaves held within the guild (including a number of people from Sulik’s tribe) were free. Sulik’s sister Kurisu wasn’t held there, but her friends had a good idea of where she was probably held. There was another slaves holding camp in the desert, Southwest of the Den.
Vic didn’t have genuinely useful knowledge, but he explained who had sold the Vault 13 plastic containers to him. This supplier lived in a place called Vault City.
Flush with youthful confidence, Alessa decided to locate and assault the slavers’ camp in the desert. This didn’t go too well.
Though she and her two allies came in loaded with the best guns to be had in the Den, Vic panicked in the middle of the shooting. He was promptly killed. The Chosen One was also nearly killed, though that was nothing stimpack couldn’t stabilise.
Alessa and Sulik nevertheless worked their way through the opposition, freeing another bunch of slaves – including Sulik’s sister. Sulik, Kurisu, Alessa and fellow tribespeople then return to the Umbra Tribe’s turf, on the Pacific coast.
Resting with Sulik’s tribe, the Chosen One helped with a few local matters to convince Sulik — who had become an ally with benefits — to resume travelling with her. These included :
- Helping the new, out-of-his-depth shaman exorcise another ghost.
- Preventing the tribe from ripped off by a “civilised” trader selling fake stimpacks.
- Rescuing a warrior caught in a cave-in.
Sulik did decide to keep accompanying Alessa for a bit longer. This solved the Chosen One’s problem with carrying looted weapons and supplies to the Den to sell them off.
(The slavers’ camp and the Umbra Tribe are part of the restored game content.)
Returning to the Den, Alessa and Sulik prepared for the long trek Eastward to Vault City, where Vic’s supplier lived. The travel proved rough, with multiple clashes with bandits and aggressive, mutated beasts and plants.
Hassan also became stalked by Kaga, a powerful but crazy warrior from her tribe. Kaga felt against all logic he should have been the Chosen One, and had left Arroyo in a rage when his ambitions were refused. He had soon become a bandit, assembling a small crew of highwaymen.
His first attempt against the Chosen One failed, though not by much. His henchpersons were killed off. Kala seemingly fell into a deep arroyo as he fled – mostly because he was focused on yelling that he wasn’t really fleeing. No body was visible at the bottom, though.
As they got close to Vault City, the two tribals stumbled upon a small, drought-stricken farming community called Modoc.
Once she reaches the Den, Alessa starts seeing people wearing sunglasses. Thinking that it looks pretty cool, she increasingly wears her ancestral Aviators on her nose rather than as a headband.
During this era, the Chosen One switches to a leather armour suit, which protects her better than her Vault 13 jumpsuit.
(Continued from the previous profile)
Eternal sunshine of the invulnerable mind, part 1
Alessa generally projects a nice, smiling, dynamic and open-minded attitude. This is entirely sincere. She quite enjoys her life. She’s unable to feel sadness, tiredness or remorse. This leaves her happy most of the time. Or at least upbeat, since it is hard to say whether a person who cannot know sadness can be happy.
Her life is certainly pleasant from her point of view, and always has been.
While she is a perfect liar, in practice she seldom dissembles. Instead she approaches people with a purely rational scratch-my-back-and-I’ll-scratch-yours mindset. In the harsh wasteland this is a shared, comfortable discourse. On average, she lies markedly less than most.
Eternal sunshine of the invulnerable mind, part 2
Alessandra-Maria’s personality cannot be damaged by pain, frustration, bitterness, resentment, jealousy, fear, etc.. These emotions are meaningless to her. She thus, in her unique way, functions better than normal humans do. Especially in a world that can devastate people at the drop of a hat.
It’s not just that she has no concept of evil. She has little reason to act in an “evil” manner, since she cannot be emotionally damaged. She has no frustrations to unleash. No broken dreams or humiliations to avenge. No notion of injustice (real or imagined) to lash out against.
A lack of moral inhibitions doesn’t automatically make a person evil. It’s way more complicated than that.
Furthermore, Alessa acts strategically. Though she’s young, she’s real smart. Thus, she realises that altruistic strategies are objectively the best ones, at least over the long term.
Unlike most fictional depictions of “sociopaths”, she thinks systematically. While she likes fighting and killing, keeping most people around her alive and unhurt is a good investment.
Murdering a shopkeeper now to take their stuff is good. But staying on their good side so there’s always a shop to barter with when needed is better. An active shop means a richer village. Rich villages are where you can get good weapons, good food, good sex, secure sleep, water, ammunition, etc.. There aren’t many rich villages in the wasteland.
Therefore murdering shopkeepers is strategically unsound. Keeping them happy means good things for Alessa down the line.
Likewise, in the incident mentioned in one of the quotes below, Ms. Hassan doesn’t care in the least about the local orphans. But she’d like to get special prices at “Mom”‘s diner since she likes the way “Mom” cooks rats. So she does something that will make “Mom” happy with her.
She also assumes that the job will likely degenerate into a low-risk slaughter (probably with melee weapons to save ammunition), which’ll be fun. So it’s a win-win.
(As it turned out, nobody died. A brash statement to provoke a fight accidentally turned out to be a sensible proposal, and a remarkably constructive deal was made.)
“Mom”: “… and so I did buy that building to house these poor orphans, but we can’t move in because of the squatters and so far nobody can help. (blah, blah, blah). The two women willing to help me can’t…”
Alessa: “You’re nice. You gave lot of useful information – and good tasty food. And beer. Good relationship, that. Can help reclaim the building. Free for you, or maybe just one symbolic beer. A small one. But cold.”
“Mom”: “Really ? You could talk to them and convince them to leave ? That would be wonderful. I’m sure all these children would look up to you.”
Alessa (with a strange, vaguely creepy smile): “Probably best if they don’t. You can go sleep. Don’t worry about specifics. The building will be reclaimed when you wake up. Nice. Easy. Good for children. Your food is good.”
Alessa (pointing): “You. Joey ?”
Joey: “That’s me, sweet cheeks. The girls at Becky’s told ya about Joey’s sweet lovin’, heh ? You want me bad I bet, ah ah.”
Alessa (pointing in the other direction) “That house there. You squatted there for a time. Found a hidden locket. Golden. It’s not yours. Want it. Now.”
Sulik: “We be sent by spirits, mon. Holy work.”
Joey: “What the fuck mental tribal shit is this ? You cavemen fuck right off.” (reaches into his pants) “We got guns, fuck off ya hear ?”
Alessa: (in a cobra-like move, fast-draws her .44 and executes Joey with a point blank shot in the temple) “No.” (draws her second pistol to cover both of Joey’s friends)
Sulik: “Okay, ‘holy’ may not be right word now.” (to Joey’s buddies) “Don’t mess with dat girl, frens. She got baaad spirits. Scorpion spirits. She be death, mon.”
Sulik: “We and I don’t think we can be takin’ on these guys, fren’. Not the two of us.”
Alessa: “Notice this. They all have pistols. The boss, he’s got a riot gun. They’re not good with range. Too much open space, like here… and here… they can’t cross quickly enough not to get shot. They need to return fire. They don’t have the discipline to all charge at once. Can pin them. Take them down one by one. Take them apart. You take this pistol, shoot in their direction from time to time. They’ll think there are two snipers.” (draws a plan in the dust on the ground) “Look at the angles.”
Other Universes History
Alessa could be injected in any post-apocalyptic environment that has at least pockets of low-tech survivors. If the setting doesn’t allow for mutations, she could simply be a cinematic psychopath.
As an unusual variant she could be an accidental time traveller. It could involve:
- Jonah Hex‘s vintage time-travel adventures.
- Or being unexpectedly dumped into Gotham during the No Man’s Land era.
- Or ending up in the past à la Ash from Evil Dead, teaming up with the Viking Prince or somebody like that to fight a magical menace.
- Or ending up in Skartaris , and perhaps even running into the Secret Six whilst they were there…
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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly
Alessa the Chosen One
|Dex: 04||Str: 02||Bod: 04||Motivation: Psychopath|
|Int: 05||Wil: 05||Min: 05||Occupation: Adventurer|
|Inf: 05||Aur: 04||Spi: 05||Wealth: 001|
|Init: 016||HP: 025|
Iron will: 05, Obscure: 08, Sealed systems: 02, Superspeed: 01
Bonuses and Limitations:
- All Powers are Form Function.
- Iron Will also adds to her RV against negative emotions such as shame, guilt, sadness, regret, pity, etc..
- Obscure only applies against attempts to read or detect her emotions or motivation. It applies against lie detection.
- Sealed systems only to enhance her RV against radiation, thirst, hunger, fatigue and suffocation.
- Superspeed only for Mental Tasks, only for acquiring new skills and knowledge.
Acrobatics (Climbing): 04, Artist (Actress): 04, Charisma (Intimidation, Persuasion): 06, Martial artist (AV, EV): 05, Martial Artist (OV, RV): 04,Medicine: 03, Military science (Survival): 02, Thief (Locks and safes): 06, Weaponry (Firearms): 06, Weaponry (Melee): 05
Ambidextrous, Familiarity (Arid environments survival, Psychiatry, Veterinary medicine, Psychology, Gecko skinning, Low-tech DIY, Shamanistic rituals), Iron Nerves, Schtick (Called Shots (Weaponry, Martial Artist), Pain management (Medium)).
Arroyo tribals (Low), Sulik (Low), Vic (Low).
Klamath: Trapper Smiley (Low).
The Den: Rebecca of Becky’s Casino (Low), “Mom” (High).
Misc.: Hassan is visibly a tribal girl, which may draw prejudice from higher-tech people.
- The pipe rifle, melee weapons and 10mm pistol have the usual stats (see our weapons locker articles).
- Leather armour [BODY 05, Skin armour: 01, Limitation: Partial (long coat level)].
- Snub-nosed .44 magnum revolver [BODY 03, Projectile weapons: 05, Range: 02, Ammo: 06, R#03, Advantage: Schtick (Fast-Draw), Drawback: Long reload time, Limitation: Projectile Weapons has no Range, use the listed Range instead].
- Dragunov 5.56mm conversion [BODY 02, Projectile weapons: 06, Range: 05, Ammo: 10, Telescopic vision: 01, R#03, Limitation: Telescopic vision only for shooting purposes, as it represents the iron sights ; Projectile Weapons has no Range, use the listed Range instead].
- PIP-Boy 2000 handheld computer in a forearm sheath [BODY 02, Data storage (incl. audiovisual): 10, Military science (Cartography): 02, Medicine (Treatment): 03 (Limitation – Medicine is limited to simple diagnoses)].
- Stimpacks (x6) [BODY 01, Damage Transference (No Delay, No Damage Taken): 02, Grenade Drawback, Limitation: the user must have 4+ APs of Medicine (First Aid). If that’s not the case, the APs of Damage Transference are halved].
- Sunglasses [BODY 01, Shade: 01].
The optional rules about distance penalties, using the Real Genre, are assumed to be in effect.
Game Stats — DC Adventures RPG Print Friendly
Chosen One (Alessa-Maria Hassan) (Profile #2 – Vic) — Averaged PL7
Mutant predator ● 12 points ● Descriptor: Mutation, FEV
– Ignores pain — Enhanced Advantages (Great Endurance, Second chance (Pain-induced effects))
– Ignores fear — Enhanced Advantage (Fearless)
– Ignores mental fatigue — Quickness 1 (Limited 2 to learning new skills and knowledge)
– Ignores emotions — Enhanced Impervious Will 3, Second chance (Emotion-based effects), Concealment 1 (from detecting her emotions)
PIP-Boy 2000 ● 2 points (Removable) ● Descriptor: Electronics
– Personal digital assistant — Feature 1 (Computer, digital camera)
– Cartography app — Feature 1 (The PIP-Boy can be used to create and store crude but accurate maps. I suspect it has some hardware like a rangefinder to help with that)
– Medical monitor — Treatment 4 (+4) (Limited 2 to diagnosis)
Chokehold, Close Attack 1, Defensive roll 2, Improved Critical (1 Rank in Unarmed, Melee, Firearms), Power attack, Range attack 2.
Assessment, Equipment 6, Fearless, Greant Endurance, Second Chance (emotion-based effects, pain-induced effects).
Athletics 3 (+3), Deception 5 (+6), Expertise (Arid environment survival) 4 (+6), Insight 4 (+5), Intimidation 5 (+6), Perception 4 (+5), Persuasion 4 (+5), Ranged combat (Firearms) 6 (+10), Technology 7 (+9) (Limited 2 to Security), Treatment 1 (+4).
Snub-nosed .44 magnum Ranged ballistic Damage 4, Improved Critical 1, Diminished Range 2, Enhanced Advantage (Quick Draw) ● 8 points
Semi-auto rifle Ranged ballistic Damage 5 ● 10 points
Leathers Protection 1 ● 1 point
Stimpacks Healing 2, plus Healing 4 (Treatment check required), Stabilise ● 9 point (Quirk – stimpacks always Take 10 for their Healing)
Ray-Bans Second chance (Bright lights) ● 1 point
|Unarmed +6, Close, Damage 0|
|Semi-auto rifle +10, Ranged, Damage 5, Crit 19-20|
|Magnum +10, Ranged (Diminished 2), Damage 4, Crit 18-20|
* Without Defensive Roll
** Three Ranks are Impervious
*** With Defensive Roll and Leathers
- Black on ammo Early on, the Chosen One must watch her limited ammunition supplies.
- Black on stimpacks Ditto for stimpacks and healing powders.
- My mom says you’re all primitives Alessa is visibly a tribal, which may lead to prejudice from “civilised” persons.
- Trade-off areas. Attack/Effect PL 8, Dodge/Toughness PL 6, Parry/Toughness PL 6, Fort/Will PL 8.
- Points total 95 Abilities 30, Defences 14, Skills 20, Powers 12, Devices 2, Advantages 17. Equiv. PL 7.
About adapting Fallout characters
In all Fallout games, we favour character builds that are widely seen as optimised. The idea is that they’re probably the most-played builds, and thus will reflect the mental image most people have of the Player Character’s capabilities.
In the original Fallout game, the Vault Dweller’s stats could be adapted in a *relatively* straightforward way. Given some assumptions, the video game logic could be reined in. So our profile for the Vault Dweller just worked appropriate assumptions in.
By the second game, the RPG system is working at cross purposes with the narrative. An optimised build makes no sense for a low-tech tribal, and a build that makes sense for a tribal warrior would result in a… peculiar playthrough involving *lots* of reloading on normal or hard difficulty.
Thus, the chosen tribal warrior is likely to primarily be about guns (which they may never have seen) and be inept with the spear they’ve handled all their life. Putting precious skill points in melee weapon handling only makes sense if you have very specific plans.
Live and learn
After character creation, there’s long foray alone and underground that mostly involves failing to stab giant ants with a spear. This will likely teach the Chosen One to be more eloquent, with improvements in locksmithing and marksmanship on the side. Since that’s the traditional Fallout character build that works.
Then they’ll go on to swiftly develop an array of skills they’ve likely never even heard of before. Such as applied science or hacking electronic locks open.
Oh, and their fellow tribesmen will decide to teach the Chosen One useful spear-handling techniques *after* it would have been useful in their deadly ordeal. Gee, thanks mates.
Our normal goal is to present the game as it happens, but here it makes no sense. So we have to get creative and massage the Player Character to blast some sense into the narrative. Once that’s done we can present the setting and story with the fewest possible alterations (except for the dang Temple of Trials).
Trying to rationalise how a primitive fighter could have such an incredible growth curve led to the Chosen One being some sort of slightly superhuman mutant. The latter also resonated with the Gifted trait, a remarkably powerful SPECIAL advantage available in Fallout 2.
It also acknowledges that the odds of “iron man” Player Character survival when playing Fallout 2 without prior information, on normal difficulty, are abysmal.
The concept of an indefatigable super-predator who likes to kill yet can function extremely well in society (Speech skill), and has a distinctive form of intelligence, turned out to be a good way for the Chosen One to make sense. I also ended up with an intriguing concept as a mostly benign inhuman psychotic killer who’s good at repetitive tasks. Which does seem to fit with most video games, really…
Then to go full circle I used a savegame editor to modify my Fallout 2 Player Character and align her with the concept. I have played FO2 enough that “cheating” isn’t a concern, the game is already modded anyway…
… and there was no way I was redoing the Temple of Trials without a decent accuracy with that spear. There’s only so many stab-miss-retreat by 3 squares loops I can stand.
And then it gets worse
Many similar problems popped up in Fallout 3, though one was almost amusingly reversed. In FO3, the Player Character is manifestly superhuman, for no stated or guessable reason. This is discussed in our sample Lone Wanderer profile.
Source of Character: Fallout 2 (1998 video game).
Helper(s): Darci, Roy Cowan, Peter Piispanen.
Writeup overhauled on the 19th of January, 2017.