October 13, 2011

Fallout New Vegas 100%

I've finally finished the last of Fallout New Vegas.  My character topped out at level 50 with 100% in every skill but unarmed, barter, and explosives.  She ran around with T-51 Power Armor and a slew of weapons.  The only opponents I had to be wary with were Deathclaws.

Now I try to be a bit of a completionist.  I aim for 100% in a game just like I aim for 100% in a lot of other things.  Sometimes it isn't worth the effort and I don't sweat it, but if it seems within my grasp, I'm going for it.  Fallout New Vegas was problematic for me.  I swear, just as I was finishing one part of the game, another DLC (download content) would come out.  My progression through Fallout New Vegas started with the original game, playing the ending three times to push for the NCR (New California Republic), Ceasar's Army, and Mr. House.  Then I went through Honest Hearts and Dead Money.  Both of these were pretty quick play-throughs and pretty much, just OK.  I enjoyed going through Old World Blues next, mostly because I was able to pretty much pickup everything that wasn't bolted down and get some benefit from it.  There is a particular weapon, Elijah's Advanced LAER, which just kicks butt.  Loaded up with Maximum Charge ammo, I was doing nearly 400 damage per second....maybe more.  I'm not sure if the DPS numbers factored in your perks or not.

The only problem with the LAER and MC ammo is that the weapon deteriorates quickly.  Since I was scrounging for everything I could get my hands on, it wasn't that big of a deal stocking up on weapon repair kits.  I also scrounged some other LAERs for parts.

As I was working through these DLCs, they came out with the Lonely Road DLC.  It was too easy, but I'm not sure it was because I was decked out in the best arms and armament in the game.  The perks I'd picked up and the fact I usually went for headshots helped a lot.  As I was muddling through that game, which pretty much felt like a grind, a new DLC became available.  Allegedly the Gun Runners DLC would be the last.  It was just a couple bucks, so I went ahead and downloaded it. Ugh.

"Regular" Deathclaw.  Very Pointy
All this DLC does it make some more weapons available and add some challenges.  A couple of achievements were simply for doing damage with either unique "Mohave Wasteland" weapons or specific Gun Runner weapons.  Wow, that was so hard.  I just bought a custom Gun Runner mini nuke, I think it was called "Esther", and went down to the strip.  Entering one of the casinos I just started blowing everyone away.  Those two achievements popped in about a minute.  Once you have the achievement, you just reload an earlier save so everybody and their dog doesn't want to kill you.  Working on the challenges was a bit more problematic because there was no indication what the challenges were.  I had to search high and low to find any information and lucked out on the Fallout Wiki.  I was able to breeze through the challenges until it came to the hardest level of challenges.  I had already gone through and decimated too many specific creatures, and some ammo was difficult to come by, so challenges where you had to destroy X number of creatures with Y just weren't possible.  I had already killed too many named Legionnaires, so that one challenge eluded me.

Alpha Deathclaw
For the final achievement I had to complete three of five three-star challenges.  I was able to complete two without any difficulty, but the third was more of a grind challenge.  I had my choice between killing Cazadores with weapons I cannot find, or Deathclaws with a weak weapon.  Obviously I have to go for the Deathclaws.  Using the Fallout Wiki I'm able to discern the location of some Deathclaws I hadn't already eradicated.  All the easy hunting spots have been already used up.  The wiki points me out to three spots where I can hunt Deathclaws, but the kicker is I cannot just kill "regular" Deathclaws, which are numerous.  I have to kill the Mother Deathclaw, the Alpha Deathclaw, and blind Deathclaws.  There is a cave I can find one Alpha and Mother after cleaning out all the other Deathclaws.  There is a lot of saving and restarting on that cave cleanup.  The only way I can accomplish a kill that counts is to get three good hits with my Advanced LAER and then finish up with either the Recharger Rifle or the Silenced .22 pistol.  This is a bit of a grind.  Outside the cave is a Blind Deathclaw which I get in a quick enough fashion, but it chews through my armor and I use a lot of auto-stimpaks to stay alive.

The baddest Mutha: Mother Deathclaw
Three of five Deathclaws down, only two to go.  The Wiki points me to an unnamed location that is crawling with Deathclaws.  I'm lucky in that I only have to face 3 or 4 at a time with me getting the jump on them.  The Advanced LAER in a surprise attack does massive damage, so one or two hits does the job.  I manage to keep on top of some very big rocks and find a huge clutch of Deathclaws.  There have to be 20 of them milling about, with several Alphas and Matriarchs.  For some reason I am able to get into a spot where I can just see the Deathclaws when aiming down the sights, but not when the gun is at my waist.  From this vantage spot I can dump weak shot after weak shot into the ones I want.  It seems that only critical hits do any damage, but at least I seem to get a crit every 4th or 5th shot.

My last achievement pops and I am finally done with Fallout New Vegas at 100%.  The last couple of hours of frustrating play takes a bit of the shine off of an otherwise fun game.  At least the distraction takes my mind off my doctor's appointment scheduled for today.

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