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 Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*

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BlackZarak
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PostSubject: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Mon Aug 03, 2015 1:23 am

Now that I have gotten over my initial dislike of F3, I decided to do a proper run of it, and enjoy it for what it is.

When I hear of the Pitt, I hear of "moral ambiguity". I'd like to discuss that. 

Ashur himself strikes me as a very Stalin-like figure, and The Pitt itself, in the way it operates, reminds me very much of WW2 Russia. 

In my second playthrough, I sided with Ashur, and IMO, it is the most logical choice. Only he -- being an ex-BoS -- and Sandra seem to have any kind of scientific knowledge required to develop a cure for the plague as well as a proper laboratory. Two things that AFAIK, both Wehrner and Midea lack. 

Ashur, much like Stalin, believes that sacrifices are required for the greater good of society, and if you raid his safe, it seems he is sincere when he says he wants to (eventually) free the slaves and cure and have The Pitt prosper as a society.

We get no such thing from Wehrner, and to be fair, in the playthrough I did siding with the slaves, he stroke me as an absolute asshat after I recovered the cure. There is zero evidence that Wehrner wants to rebuild the Pitt. Remember his Speech challenge, when he flat out says "Fuck the slaves", quite clearly saying he is only in it for the power?

I get the part about slavery -- being a violation of human rights, blah, blah, blah -- and to be fair, I don't really care. While his methods might be discutable, I personally feel that Ashur is the best hope for the Pitt to have any kind of future. 

Doesn't look like much moral ambiguity to me. Or maybe I can't see it, being an evil bastard.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Mon Aug 03, 2015 1:24 pm

It's actually not such an easy choice provided you can look past Wehrner's faults. The real problem is that it's not easy to overlook his attitude.

The obviously "right" choice (siding with the slaves) actually dooms everyone and the morally wrong choice (condoning slavery) doesn't necessarily save anyone.

It's pretty much a case of the end justifies the means vs the right thing to do and consequences be damned.

A textbook lose-lose situation and that's why it's so enjoyable. Smile

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Mon Aug 03, 2015 11:13 pm

In the short term, I understand why you could see siding with Ashur as a losing proposition, condoning slavery and all, but it seems to me that in the longer term, it would be the most logical and sensible choice. He is clearly thinking about the future and turning the Pitt into a thriving city, but he knows full well that sacrifices are necessary to get to this point, that this is but a transitional period to a better future and a better life. Nations are built on the blood and sweat of people, and I do not see the Pitt as any different, it is a nation in it's infant stages.

Wehrner is, IMO, a significantly worst choice. He clearly doesn't care about the people, and he lacks not only leadership, but a long-term vision.

I understand your point of view, and I respect it, but to me, siding with Ashur is a no-brainer.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Tue Aug 04, 2015 12:16 am

Wernher is a creep that's true but I don't think Ashur can succeed despite what he says. Besides his project is doomed for one very simple reason; his entire organization revolves around him. When Ashur will die everything will crumble and what will be left will be a bunch of raiders without any ambition to salvage a cure.

I liked this questline because it was hard for me to choose. I don't want to side with either of them and if I could I'd probably send them both to Hades.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 12:30 am

Huh. That is a fair point, actually. Without a strong leader figure it would dwindle yet again... but Russia survived post-Stalin much like Germany survived post-Hitler, so I guess one could debate that Ashur's fledgling nation could survive with a strong leader figure.

Although he has some sweet, if heavily damaged, power armor. The Metal Blaster laser rifle has served me well through F3, too.

At any rate, this was an interesting discussion. Cheers.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 10:09 am

Both Russia and Germany were better off once they got rid of those monsters. I think the comparison doesn't work that well because Ashur doesn't have an organization to fall back to.

I may be wrong but the way I see it Ashur is pretty much one guy and we don't really know if the raider creeps that you meet would care enough about his legacy to make sure it isn't lost.

As a character Ashur is interesting and it is nice to see a former BoS member who is NOT a knight in shiny armour...

Fallout 3 can be fun but it's a travesty. It's Oblivion with guns really and while it's not a bad thing it's not Fallout (I expect Skyrim with guns will be fun and hopefully will feature better shooting but I don't expect a real Fallout game).

That being said I find that the Pitt was one of the most interesting questline in terms of story. I also liked Point Lookout but for totally different reasons (mostly the locations and atmosphere).

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 3:11 pm

Carabas wrote:
It's pretty much a case of the end justifies the means vs the right thing to do and consequences be damned.

Reminds me of Watchmen, with Rorschach's line "Never compromise. Not even in the face of Armageddon. That's always been the difference between us.".

But that's a classic case of a post-apocalypse society. Do you follow a closed dictatorship or a democracy? When society is on the brink of collapse (or extinction even), you need a firm hand that will insure the survival on the long term. Much like on a battlefield, bickering over decisions hampers any chance of survival. The only problem is you need a benevolent dictator for that. If you have a rotten dictator (who will keep everything of value for himself and stifle growth while eliminating opposition), you're absolutely screwed. In a democracy, you have wiggle room to replace your leadership.

All in all, what should make the decision is analyzing over the long term. What side gives the best chance of survival over multiple generations. I don't remember the specifics of the Pitt quest (been 4 or 5 years), but Ashur gets wacked by an ambitious second in command, or if Werher is only supported by a slim majority of slaves, the situation can drastically change.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 5:25 pm

Interesting. We now have all three major parts of the moral spectrum in this thread, three different points of view.

And Stalin was a monster? Seems that the Russians disagree, as to this day he is still very much commemorated and celebrated. Whatever can be said about his regime, he slingshotted Russia from a 100-year technological backwardness and made it a superpower. As far as I am concerned, it's hard to argue with the end result.

Besides, Stalin had 1 million troops on standby ready to fight the Nazis and even extended an alliance offer to the Allies, which was completely ignored, forcing Stalin's hand to make the Molotov-Ribentroff pact with Nazi Germany to buy some more time. Stalin knew what was coming, and prepared accordingly. In it's backward state, would Russia have played such a pivotal role in WW2 as it did? I don't think so.

As for Nazi Germany, calling them socialists is an insult to socialism as a whole. Nazi Germany was capitalism. Hitler switched all public ownership to private entities, and while Germany was brought back from shambles, it still remains a capitalist country.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 5:59 pm

I'm not an expert in Russia's history at all, so I may be wrong in pretty much all my following points... Laughing .  I always saw the tsar period, while maybe not as technologically advanced as other countries, a big player in european society. Wasn't Russia one of the major european countries under Catherine the 1rst?

For sure, though, their industrial capabilities skyrocketed under Staline. They were able to extend their borders to form the USSR and bring it to superpower status. But from what I gather, the cost was pretty heavy for the general populace. Not counting the millions that were executed by the communist regime, poverty was pretty generalized. Did the Russian population fare better under the Tsars or were they the same? I'm not asking so much in terms of population happiness and/or love for their government, but if you want to contend with other countries/superpowers on the long term, you need a healthy, productive society. Or you will drive 120 km/h fast in a brick wall.

(Another thing that nearly doomed Russia was Stalin's paranoia concerning his army generals, which he had almost all killed or imprisoned. Leadership was cruelly missing during WW2, which might have doomed Russia, had the Nazis only fought on one Front. If they could have pitted everything they had against the Russians, I'm not so sure they would have lost.)

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 6:35 pm

Russia has been a major power long before Stalin came into power. Russia was a key player during the first world war and long before that. It's not speculation, it's history.

Many things have been written about Stalin and there may be a certain bias but nobody can deny that Stalin's Purges were absolutely terrible for Russia. That alone would qualify him as a monster.

I'm not arguing that some people in Russia may look with nostalgia on that period and communism in general, it's understandable in times of crisis but that doesn't alter the fact that Stalin did commit atrocities against his own people, orchestrating mass murders and sending millions to labour camps.

I've always found quite funny that the Civilization series would include Stalin but not Hitler. It seems a bit hypocritical to me. Still, considering that these games include Genghis Khan whose brutality became the stuff of legends it makes me wonder where they draw the line... Of course considering that in Civilization games Gandhi will eat your liver with fava beans and dance on your radioactive remains you know you shouldn't take things too seriously.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 6:56 pm

Don't forget the Cult of personality phenomenon concerning Stalin. He is a God figure because people have been brainwashed in believing it. And when Russians compare the state of their country to the USSR in the 40s, they can't help but feel that whatever they were doing then worked better.

About Civ, it's not so much that they are hypocritical. Society as a whole has made any reference to Nazi Germany as a no-no. You can get in trouble by selling Nazi memorabilia on Ebay. I get it the producers didn't want to step on *those* toes. But besides that particular leader, the game presents historical important leaders. Even if Genghis Khan did brutal things, he influenced the world in his way. (and I have to say that Mongols under Genghis Khan had life pretty good. It was illegal for Mongols to be slaves, Mongols were taught to read and write and war spoils were distributed to the population. He was also tolerant to all religions. You had just hope to not be born Chinese or arab at that time, though. Laughing )

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 7:08 pm

Genghis Khan a model of tolerance? I don't think so my friend! Wink

But I get what you're saying, we have to put things in perspective.

As for Nazi lovers I have very little patience for them and despite what I've posted I would not like to see Nazi Germany glorified in games. I have the Darkest Hour for Hearts of Iron in my library and I feel sick every time I go to the Steam forums and see Nazi enthusiasts masturbating over SS uniforms. Shocked

Bloody morons.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 7:32 pm

But it would be a hoot to play Civ 4 as Hitler and manage a peaceful cultural victory with Judaism as the civ's main religion. Laughing

And I did mean religious tolerant, not tolerant period. Wink I know wikipedia isn't necessarily a ultra credible source, but in the Genghis page, it says "Genghis Khan was a tengrist, but was religiously tolerant and interested in learning philosophical and moral lessons from other religions. He consulted Buddhist monks, Muslims, Christian missionaries, and the Taoist monk Qiu Chuji.[28] Eskildsen, Stephen (2004). The Teachings and Practices of the Early Quanzhen Taoist Masters. SUNY Press. p. 17. ISBN 978-0-7914-6045-0."

It also says this in a History channel page : "7. He was tolerant of different religions.
Unlike many empire builders, Genghis Khan embraced the diversity of his newly conquered territories. He passed laws declaring religious freedom for all and even granted tax exemptions to places of worship. This tolerance had a political side—the Khan knew that happy subjects were less likely to rebel—but the Mongols also had an exceptionally liberal attitude towards religion. While Genghis and many others subscribed to a shamanistic belief system that revered the spirits of the sky, winds and mountains, the Steppe peoples were a diverse bunch that included Nestorian Christians, Buddhists, Muslims and other animistic traditions. The Great Khan also had a personal interest in spirituality. He was known to pray in his tent for multiple days before important campaigns, and he often met with different religious leaders to discuss the details of their faiths. In his old age, he even summoned the Taoist leader Qiu Chuji to his camp, and the pair supposedly had long conversations on immortality and philosophy." (http://www.history.com/news/history-lists/10-things-you-may-not-know-about-genghis-khan)

I think we're way off topic, though. Laughing

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 8:04 pm

Quote :
And I did mean religious tolerant, not tolerant period.

Distinction duly noted. Wink

He was first and foremost a mass murdering asshole who outshone all the other murdering bastards at a time when slaughtering people was a popular hobby so let's agree to disagree since this is way off topic anyway.

I guess it would be more appropriate within the context of Fallout games if we were talking about the Great Khans and the evolution between Fallout 1 and Fallout New Vegas. Razz

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Wed Aug 05, 2015 8:13 pm

Haha, I think we're disagreeing on details, but we agree on the whole, that the mongol horde committed terrible mass murders. No doubt about it. Men, women, children. It was definitely not a cool moment to be non-mongol around that country.

*ahem*, yes, Fallout. Razz

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Thu Aug 06, 2015 12:09 am

Which reminds me that I should give the Horse Lords DLC for CK2 a proper try.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Thu Aug 06, 2015 4:19 am

Stalin is in Civ? Huh. I just might have to play this now.

I can see why Hitler would be left out though ultimately he is a major part of history and should be included. I get the sensitivity issues, but history is history and I feel he deserves his place in it regardless of what has transpired.

This went off-topic but still was an interesting discussion. My knowledge of the various socialist creeds isn't deep enough to jump into the politics thread but I find communist/socialist history fascinating.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Thu Aug 06, 2015 1:39 pm

Just a note that Stalin is in Civilization 4, not Civ 5, the most recent game. In that one, the only Russian leader you can select is Catherine.

I agree that Hitler is part of history and should be recognized as such, but as it's still very recent I can also understand that people (concentration camp survivors, for example) would be hurt by his admissibility in the game. On the other hand, if you have to choose, would you put Hitler over Charlemagne? Over Bismarck? Hitler definitely influenced his time and the Nazis were winning their gamble for a time, but ultimately, what did he accomplish? Do we see him bigger because it is more recent?

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Thu Aug 06, 2015 2:13 pm

Charlemagne is not a German leader! That's German propaganda. He was a Frank (a Germanic people, the difference is significant). Do you know what is the German word for France? It's Frankreich, the empire of the Franks. At that time Germany and France didn't exist. Charlemagne didn't speak German (his language would have been closer to Dutch). He is the ancestor of one of the most prominent dynasty in the history of Europe and one that shaped what would become the kingdom of France.

In any case when it comes to achievements things tend to become subjective. Napoleon did save France but he also doomed the country in the long run. The French campaign in Russia was not an achievement.

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Thu Aug 06, 2015 2:26 pm

Oops, my bad. I know Germany was founded later on, I wasn't talking about real history, it was in reference to the Civ 4 leaders. I thought Charlemagne was the 2nd German leader. I forgot there was the HRE in the game! Frederick is the second leader.

Though, because we love bickering, technically the Franks are a Germanic tribe, no? Razz

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Thu Aug 06, 2015 4:28 pm

They were a Germanic people, it doesn't mean they were Germans, just like a Germanic language is not necessarily German. Wink

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PostSubject: Re: Fallout 3 - The Pitt *spoilers*   Thu Aug 06, 2015 6:12 pm

Last closing note for me -- I haven't played any of the Civ games so it's hard for me to comment on those, but purely from a historical point of view, Hitler, Charlemagne, Bismark, Khan, etc... all left a strong mark on history, and deserve their rightful place in it. We should look at history from an objective point of view, because right or wrong, it is a part of our legacy and should be treated as such.

I am not a big fan of Civ type games, but if IV pops up cheap I might as well get it. Playing my own version of a Stalinian empire... intrigues me.

Reminds me of that time in Tropico when I had barely began building my town and the US declared war on me which was funny... but not surprising since I had 100% with the Axis. Even funnier was their sending of an ambassador some time after declaring war on me. Made me chuckle.

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