Bethesda is well known for creating quality short stories in their games, and we’ve compiled 6 of what we believe are the saddest stories hidden around the commonwealth in Fallout 4.
Bethesda is a company with many years of great storytelling experience, and the company has become quite adept at crafting many touching short stories that populate both the Elder Scrolls and the Fallout series. Whether it’s a tragic family story at a lighthouse or even a tree-based moral dilemma, the company is certainly capable of scripting some touching stories and putting them in unexpected places, and such is certainly the case in Fallout 4.
We’ve compiled six of what we believe are the saddest stories in Fallout 4, and are absolutely worth exploring the Commonwealth to experience. We’ve helped you find things like power armor and even hairstyles, but now it’s time to turn on the sappy music and listen to the sadder side of the wasteland:
The Norwegian Shipmates
South of the Castle lies the Wreck of the FMS Northern Star, which hosts a crew different from any other characters in Fallout 4. If the player boards the ship, a group of ghouls will begin to defend it – but they’ll be shouting Norwegian phrases at the player, unlike the rest of the game’s english-based characters. Translating their shouts actually reveals they’re saying things like “You shouldn’t be here!”, “Go away from our ship!”, and “Leave us alone!”. Though the game calls them raiders, it’s clear this isn’t the case.
As it turns out, the Norwegian crew look to have been trapped in the Boston port when the bombs fell. Unable to communicate with any of the english-speaking survivors, they have defended their ship from raiders and mirelurks for the last 200 years, which explains why they would open fire when the player jumps aboard. When any of the crew die, they say “Jeg kommer hjem”, which translate into “I’m coming home”. After 200 years, the poor crew were unable to see the ports of Norway or find out what happened to their families, and are destined to either stay on the ship forever, or be killed by The Wanderer.
The tip of the ship plays host to the Agility Bobblehead, so it’s likely most players will slaughter the luckless crew to get that sweet, sweet, stat boost.
The Yangtze Chinese Submarine
Off the coast near southeast of the Shamrock Taphouse, a beached Chinese nuclear submarine called the Yangtze has spent the last 200 years sealed from the outside world. As it turns out, the Yangtze dispatched a nuclear payload at the start of the Great War, and is the entire reason behind the existence of The Glowing Sea. The submarine struck a mine on its way out, forcing it to seek refuge in the port of Boston. Due to the damage, the nuclear reactor of the submarine experienced a leak, turning the crew into feral ghouls – that is, except for one.
For the last 200 years, the ship’s captain, Zao, has been stuck in the submarine, stewing in guilt for his part in the nuclear apocalypse. Despite the fact that his crew have turned into feral ghouls, he is unwilling to escape because it means he would have to leave them alone to get parts, and he refuses to leave the remnants of the men he considers family, and can’t bear to put them out of their misery. Unable to cope with the tragic situation, he has spent 200 years in complete isolation, and asks The Wanderer to do what he doesn’t have the strength to do to his feral friends in order to get the submarine moving and return to a home he isn’t sure is even still standing.
Zao’s intact submarine uniform is a unique piece of clothing, and it seems many gamers are apt to kill the lone Chinese survivor after all of his years of suffering and guilt. While he followed orders that led to a nuclear apocalypse, we can’t help but feel bad for the guilt-ridden soldier who spent 200 years staring at the faces of the men he calls his family.
The Separated Family
If players find their way to the The West Everett Estates, they’ll discover the remains of a formerly nice community that has been turned into a post-apocalyptic fortress, protected by walls of piled vehicles. The estate has long been under Super Mutant control, and the player can fight their way to a cellar shelter called The Backyard Bunker, which reveals a tragic story in its own.
A terminal in the bunker reveals a father named Wayne and his two children had been holed up in the shelter for months after the bombs dropped, but the father never gave up that his wife, who was in the city when the bombs fell, may still be alive. A series of terminal journal entries show that as the months went by, he still spends most his time thinking of her, and even had his kids try and make a cake on what would have been her 30th birthday. Eventually, the Estates compound is overrun by raiders, and the children recorded a holotape directed to their Mom during the commotion as their father attempts to tell them to run. The holotape is the last thing ever seen from the separated family. We assume the worst for all of them.
In the Chestnut Hillock Reservoir lies a tattered farmhouse with a flickering bug light, a dead brahmin, and a sad story on a terminal. It turns out that a man named Edwin had stumbled upon the house many years ago and was nearly killed by Annika, the women who lived there and had mistaken him for a raider. The pair fell in love, and lived happily well into their elder years. Annika passed on, and as Edwin’s journal entry makes clear, he struggled to find warmth in a world without her.
One day, a bloatfly swarm came close while he was fishing. He was able to get some shots off at them, but upset his boat in the process. Soon after, he realized that he has lost his locket with Annika’s photo in it, his last material possession that ties himself to her. Edwin is devastated at the loss of the locket, and plans to brave the radiation-filled waters to get it back. Refusing to abandon her memory, he went through with his plan and dove back into the lake in a desperate attempt to retrieve the locket. The Wanderer can dive underwater next to the boat and will find the locket, clutched firmly in the long-dead hands of Edwin. He died holding the last part of the world that reminded him of Annika, and in some small way, a tragic story had closure.
The Runaway’s Story
South of Sanctuary lies a Ranger Cabin, left in shambles from the Great War but virtually untouched after that. On a mattress lies the skeleton of a long deceased girl, curled up near a suitcase with a dress and a holotape. Playing the tape reveals that the girl had gotten into a massive fight with her father after telling her parents that was she pregnant. Her father had told her that she should be ashamed and had to leave the house, and her mother sad nothing and simply cried- which she states hurt worse than anything else. She didn’t tell the baby’s father, a teenager named John, and opted to run away to the Ranger Cabin she had played in as a young girl.
It’s clear that when the bombs dropped, The Runaway Girl died feeling more alone than potentially anyone else in the commonwealth. She didn’t have enough faith to tell John he was to be father. Her parents had forced her out of her home. She died in a cabin in the woods, with an unborn child, and her story would remain completely unknown until the Wanderer simply happened to come on by.
The Love Of Two Sisters
Early in the game, many players may have stumbled upon the quest to give Diamond City radio personality Travis some confidence. This takes them to the Beantown Brewery, where a raider named Tower Tom can be found and killed. Hacking his terminal reveals that he had kidnapped a rival gang member named Lily, the little sister of the rival outfit’s leader, Red. Tom had been extorting food supplies from the other group, threatening harm on Red’s little sister if the food supply stopped. At some point, Tower Tom accidentally killed Lily, and hid her body in one of the vats in the brewery so no one would know. He began forging the notes to Red, hoping that the big sister would keep sending food supplies for as long as possible.
For many, the story ended there. However, if players stumble onto the Federal Ration Stockpile near the southeast corner of the commonwealth, they will find Red and her gang. Inside Red’s room is the letters that Tom sent, and Red’s terminal reveals a distraught big sister desperate to rescue her little sister. She is suspicious about a potential forgery in the letters, but doesn’t let that stop her search for her little sister. If the player has already killed Tower Tom, Red’s terminal reflect that the Beantown Brewery was cleared out, but there were no signs of her sister. She has sent her gang members throughout the commonwealth to look for her, absolutely refusing to give up.
The player knows that Lily has been dead for months, and it’s tragic to see Red had desperately continued a search that would never yield any fruit. Since she fights the player on sight, it’s safe to say that if she encounters the player, she dies never knowing what became of her sister. Perhaps it was for the better.
What do you think about the sad tales in Fallout 4, Ranters? Are there any you think deserved to be on the list?