Mad Science!

Ever look at some of the tech in Fallout and wonder what real-world weapons and technologies might be possible?
For example, they have forcefields, laser weapons, plasma weapons, Directed Tesla weapons, anti-gravity (or something equivelant), enormous capacity power supplies....practical Robotics and Artificial Intelligence. (running off of vacuum tubes no less!)
What kind of stuff would you build with that kind of tech? Surely you wouldn't stop with just the stuff they did in the game right?

My planned mod basically opens up the options a little, The Courier has possibly not been sleeping enough, or that shot in the head has knocked something loose. one way or another, The Courier's eyes have been opened anew to the possibilities of the technology around him/her.
The Plan is to allow the Courier to piece together various devices from technology scavenged in the mojave. these devices require the courier to encounter situations, devices or concepts which inspire them to find a workbench and some spare parts and get tinkering. hopefully this will inspire some extra Roleplay in the game.

My Goal is to make new weapons and devices which add new and unique game mechanics into the game beyond the basic "big gun goes pewpew" sort of mod. These are intended to change the way people play the game a little, but not break the immersion or balance of the game. There should be valid reasons why these technologies weren't pursued pre or postwar (or why they weren't as good back then)

In general, a powerful weapon is offset by either being ridiculously heavy, using up huge quantities of ammunition in a short space of time, or simply being really really hard to acquire.

Combinations of devices which would overbalance the game are generally not permitted. so for example, the healing, repair and stealth field generators listed below are all incompatible with one another. This doesn't stop the player from healing, repairing or using stealth powerups while using these devices, but those are all short-term functions which will wear off. while my devices continue until removed.

You're Next!

Everything in the above picture is modded in some way. and I mean everything...Most of it by me.

History

Initially started in early march of 2011. project went on for about a week before being set aside in favour of more interesting projects (like the Vault 105 project).

More recently as of about August 20th, I restarted work on this project, deleting my previous effort entirely and starting fresh.

My intended theme is to take all the slightly campy B-movie Mad Scientist tropes and run with them. A gun that shoots radioactive soda? awesome, a Psychic brain in a jar attached to a gun? check. Goggles that do nothing? absolutely!

 

My rules for this mod, All weapons and devices are non-unique in terms that it is possible to acquire more than one of them. Many players have companions and follower mods and may wish to give copies of some of the gear to them.

All Weapons and devices and Armor must not be God or Cheat items. If there is an advantage, there must be a corresponding disadvantage of some form.

All weapons and devices, in keeping with the first rule, are crafted at Workbenches or Reloading benches. they are unlocked via notes. the Notes are acquired usually automatically by completing certain conditions in the normal game. eg: discovering broken Stealthboys as part of a standard quest gives a note which suggests the player has studied the internals of the Stealthboys and drawn up rough plans. these then allow you to create the Stealth Harness using a couple Stealthboys and a bigger power supply.

Everything has a custom mesh of some form. Being visually distinct is a goal, but so is fitting in with existing content. I want players to be able to use my devices in their own characters without it dominating their style.

Implemented Weapons and Devices

Nuka Rifle

I opened with a bang by creating the Nuka Rifle. A powerful energy weapon based on Plasma rifle technology but using Radioactive soda as part of its mechanism.

I described this gun as "A shallow trajectory, Nuka-cola based, high explosive plasma mortar". Fantastically fun to use and very very powerful. Because of its power, I deliberately made it hard to acquire, doing so requires either a late game perk, or a long quest. Completing either of these requirements unlocks the weapon for construction at a workbench. But the player must still acquire all the relevant components, some of which are exceedingly rare.

Once the player has it however, they will possess an exceptional gun which packs quite a kick.

Nuka rifle

The Nuka Rifle, Note the two soda bottles attached to the sides.

Gauss Cannon

The Gauss Cannon was one of my earliest additions to this mod. It is my idea of how a Gauss gun ought to be depicted.

In the Vanilla game, the Gauss Rifle is a powerful Sniper weapon which shoots a single hypervelocity shot which will typically kill most mid-strength enemies and seriously hurt more powerful ones. It's characteristics match those of a Railgun rather than a Gauss gun as described on Wikipedia

From my understanding of Gauss weaponry, The fire-rate limitations on a real gauss gun would mostly be limited to how fast the coils can be cycled, and how fast projectiles can be fed into the barrel. In the Fallout universe that should translate to many thousands of rounds per minute. Similar to a real world Gatling gun (indeed probably the same mechanisms would be used for ammunition feeding)

To that end, I created a mashup of a 25mm auto-cannon and an up-scaled gauss-rifle barrel.

my resultant weapon has fire-rates on par with the Minigun and Gatling lasers, mixed with the powerful impacts of Gauss rifle rounds.
It is naturally extremely overpowered. My stopgap solution is logical enough, the Gauss Rifle is clearly a railgun by the wrong name, and its ammunition is merely the power cell to fire it rather than an actual metal slug. so I created a workbench crafting recipe for Gauss Cannon Solid-Slugs. These are fairly easy to make, but require scrap metal (not exactly abundant, but not uncommon either) and large amounts of lead. Lead is used in crafting most projectile ammunition in the vanilla game and most players will probably have it in abundance. The won't after they start using this gun.

I anticipate that players will not use this gun much, or if they do, they will soon run out of ammo and switch to something else. but in the interim, this gun will utterly destroy everything that falls under its sights.

Tesla Rifle

Having thoroughly enjoyed the movie District 9, I created this gun partly as a homage to it. It's a directed electricity weapon with decent range, accuracy and power.

Critical hits with this gun results in the target spontaneously exploding into giblets in an effect previously only used in Fallout 3's climactic final battle. Liberty Prime, a giant robot that shoots lasers from its face used it as a perk. I had to find a way to convert that perk into a critical hit effect. Simply using the same perk would have resulted in the gun reliably killing everything it was fired at on the first hit, I didn't want that. so this gun now causes gibletting on roughly 1:3 hits. often better due to sneak-attack or other bonuses.

I also created custom meshes and effects for the gun. I'm very pleased with it and I use it more than any of the other weapons I've created.

Ker-Splam

I don't normally go for gore in games, but there's something really satisfying about this weapon.

Exo-Frame

Due to my planning consistently producing weapons and equipment that are very heavy, I decided that I needed something to help with heavy lifting. Player characters for this mod I expect would dump most of their character's points into intelligence and related areas. leaving the Strength stats fairly clear. This doesn't mesh well with the heavy weapons in this mod, so I created The Exo Frame.

The Exo Frame is what you get when you take a suit of powered armor and strip away everything except the mechanisms.

Great for heavy lifting, pretty well useless for armor.

The result is this: A powered exoskeleton which can be worn over almost all other armours.

This is obviously somewhat overbalancing as a game mechanic as players can "have it all" and be both strong and intelligent without dumping other stats.

Since I improved two features (The player strength, and the player's carry-weight) I chose to reduce two to compensate. I chose agility and movement speed. This change emphasises the frame's purpose by further reducing the combat-effectiveness of the player wearing it. This means that the frame is only really good for transporting heavy gear and for using heavy weapons while wearing heavier armor. More lightweight combat involving dodging behind cover a lot is probably not going to work very well with the Exo Frame.

The Exo-Frame is constructed primarily using components salvaged from Powered armor, though the same parts can be acquired off of destroyed robots. These parts are relatively easy to acquire early, and unlocking the schematics for the Frame is similarly easy to do, being a case of finding one of three power armoured soldiers scattered around the game, or recieving Power Armor Training

I am considering an upgrade which removes most of the negative effects of the Exo-Frame once the player recieves Power Armor Training.

 

Exo-Frame

The Exo-Frame shown without any extra armor or gear

 

Portable Holo-Emitter

In the Fallout New Vegas DLc "Dead Money", there are security holograms scattered throughout the game. These are completely indestructable enemies which mount powerful laser weapons.

The DLc's main villain character suggests that should someone acquire the technology behind the holograms, they would be able to win any battle by simply placing a projector down and watching the hologram kill everyone.

There was even some cut-content for allowing the player to recieve some form of portable emitter.

My device takes this concept and runs with it. What I have created is a shoulder-mounted holographic projector.

When equipped and the player is in combat, a hologramatic Security guard (identical in all respects to the ones in the DLc) will spawn and protect the player. This hologram will disappear as soon as the player is no longer under attack, whatever those conditions may be.

This mechanism provides a number of interesting limiters on the holograms, firstly, a player who wishes to sneak through an enemy encampment unnoticed can continue to use the projector without worry. As long as they remain Hidden, the hologram will not spawn to attack or break their cover. This meshes very well with my Stealth Harness

likewise should a player sneak around a corner and hide, The holograms will only continue fighting until the enemy lose track of the player. meaning that it is impossible to just let the holograms do the work for you. The nearest I managed to achieve during playtesting was to wait in the next room while the holograms went next-door and killed everyone.
A rare set of circumstances which requires the player to deliberately sit still and wait for the fighting to finish.

This game mechanic I feel balances the overpowered aspects of having an unkillable walking laser turret at your disposal and makes it all much more fun to work with.

I also have an upgraded version of the Emitter which allows for a second hologram to be spawned, this Emitter array has an adjusted model with an extra emitter attached.

Stealth Harness

Permits unlimited invisibility to the wearer when they're crouched. identical in functionality to the Chinese Stealth Armor already available in the game, but is instead Craftable and lacks the armor aspects.

Indeed the model is literally the external components of the stealth armor removed and made into its own apparel.

Robot IFF Transciever

When equipped, adds the player to the robot factions so that they turn non-hostile. When unequipped, removes the player from the same factions.

Healing Field

Heals the player while equipped. Similar in concept to a couple devices in one of the DLcs, but mine will look less ridiculous and will work faster. For balance, I'm considering making it operate at reduced effectiveness while the player is moving or perhaps while in combat.

I am considering a short term perk to go with this. The player becomes less capable of healing themselves and more susceptible to injury as their body comes to rely on the healing field. I'm thinking this perk should have several phases and they should start after about five or ten minutes of being at full health with the field active. Each phase would increase the effect fairly exponentially until the player finds themselves totally relying on the Healing field. This could be removed by spending two or three times whatever the perk's threshold time is not using the healing field. The cold-turkey period would be a dangerous time for the player and strongly discourage them from using the field too much.

 

Still to Come:

Repair Field

Repairs the player's equipment while equipped. For balance, I'm considering making it operate at reduced effectiveness while the player is moving or perhaps while in combat. it should operate very slowly, barely noticably. but enough that weapons that are left in inventory for five or ten minutes will be fully repaired by the time they come to be used again. essentially ineffective at repairing weapons that are being used routinely as the degradation of firing the gun will be faster than the repair.

Portable Energy-Ammo Recharger

Recharges the drained energy weapon ammunition players routinely collect. does so at greater efficiency than the player does at workbenches, but does it much much slower. A player can recharge as many cells as they want, but only gets a certain fraction of them back from the process. This will do them one at a time and take maybe a minute each.

versions, Solar Powered (only works during daylight hours), Radiation powered (only works when the player is irradiated,also drains the player's radiation slowly for a bonus effect) or Recharger. which uses the mechanisms of either a Recharger pistol or rifle.

 

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