Fallout 4: Minecraf … er … Far Harbor

Sigh.  Should have known they were gonna screw it up.

I’ve really been enjoying running around Far Harbor; it has an atmosphere to it, a sense of place that I think was missing in the base game.  Between the fog and the dark and Maine’s primeval forests

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If this is Far Harbor, that’s probably a preschool.

bordering on the ancient and unchanging ocean depths that probably hide horrors too unspeakable to contemplate …

… I am really craving sum fish and chips.  And it didn’t help when I met this guy:

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Trust the Gorton’s fisherman

I developed an excessive interest in the doings of Far Harbor, from Small Bertha and Tom’s undeveloped stories to wondering if I could romance the Mariner.  (Ans: no.)

Plus I found me some cool armor that makes me look like Boba Fett:

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At its best, it became rather like Skyrim: a fun place to spend a few hours, a place you might want to live, if it didn’t have all that radioactive fog.

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And like in Skyrim, I spent a lot of time hunting.

Heck, I didn’t even mind when I ran into this guy, despite him looking like the black and white TV I used to watch Petticoat Junction on as a kid:

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Have you tried adjusting the rabbit ears?

After all, Fallout’s gotta have its robots, and a moody, philosophical robot who quickly draws you into a conspiracy centering around his vague, shadowy, and best forgotten past is just what the game needed.  It was a good plot twist, and they did it right.

So, of course, they turned it into Minecraft:

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Why, Fallout?  WHY?!?

You have to access Dima’s memories, and rather than just have you hack a terminal, like you have been doing in Fallout for the past 10 years, they turn it into a minigame where they replace the relaxing, somber colors you’ve been enjoying with something out of an 8-bit nightmare.  I swear to Tron, I think this is where bad cartridges go when they die.

The point is to destroy firewalls, which look like (get ready for this one) walls.

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Oi!  Where’s my lightcycle?!?

Then you can build bridges over the ridiculously inconveniently incomplete pathways using “code blocks” because apparently “code” isn’t the important part of that term

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Master Control Program?  Is that you?

so your “Data Retrieval Bugs” or whatever they’re called can go upload the data

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And … bloody hell this is not what computers look like!!1!

Look, I don’t even write code and it hurts my geek brain to look at this!  The Internet is not a giant Lego!  You don’t need visual metaphors to write a freakin’ program!

Worst of all, the old hacking minigame was fun! It also fit the vibe of Fallout perfectly.  If they wanted to make it harder, there were probably a dozens ways to do so while still keeping that retro future feel to it.

But no.  Minecraft’s popular, so they made Minecraft Lite!  Oh, and did I mention it involves puzzle solving?  You have to figure out which paths to take, how to align the “decoder” (it’s a fcking laser, ok?  Just call it a laser.  A decoder is an algorithm, it doesn’t shoot green energy.) and yada yada yada.

I play Fallout to fck sh1t up, not to solve physics puzzles.  When I want to solve physics puzzles, I play Portal, or – just to up the geek ante – I tutor physics.

Oh.  And there are 5 levels of this.  Longest part of the game so far.  By the time I was done, I no longer craved fish and chips.  I craved beer and bloody vengeance on whoever designed this stupid level.

I even tried doing some hacking in the metagame, but I couldn’t even use console commands to clear the quest.

Oh, and I haven’t even mentioned the best part?  Are you still with me here?  Remember when all we wanted to do was take the Mariner out, buy her some clam chowder and go sailing around the island?  Those days are over, buddy.  No clam chowder for you.  Just endless hate when you discover that the mechanism they used to build their hated minigame was the equally hated settlement workshop mechanic:

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Perspective is for sissies!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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