The second game in the Fallout series, released in 1998. This installment improves much upon its predecessor, being a game where you can do just about anything within reason. Depending on your actions, intelligence, charisma, gender and patience, each playthrough is a wildly different experience. Numerous pop culture references make this game a troper's best friend.The tribal village Arroyo is an okay place to live. Aside from trading caravans that come by every once in a blue moon, you and your family, the tribe, are completely isolated from the outside world and live a peaceful and simple life. But nothing is ever that simple.Several failed harvests and the death of the majority of the Brahmin herd have taken quite a toll on the tribe, and its members are now slowly withering away from starvation and diseases. However, ancient holotapes speak of one thing that might be the key to salvation: the legendary Garden of Eden Creation Kit, which is said to be able to bring life to even the driest of deserts. Arroyo needs someone to leave the village and search for the GECK. That someone is you.You are The Chosen One, the grandchild of the Vault Dweller from Vault 13. Eighty years ago your ancestor ventured out to save his vault, and later ended up founding the tribe. Dressed in your great forefather's old Vault jumpsuit and carrying the only lead on your target - a Vault 13 flask - you now must journey out and find a trader named Vic in the nearby settlement of Klamath. He might know where you can find Vault 13, which possibly has a GECK...Or you could just give in to the temptations of the huge, open world that now lies in front of you, and do whatever you want.
Affably Evil: President Dick Richardson and most of the Enclave Civilian Government are quite polite people who are trying to kill all mutants, which by their definition are basically everybody in the desert.
A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Depending on how you built it, Skynet can potentially turn on you as soon as you exit the Sierra base.
All Women Love Shoes: When you gamble in a casino as a female character, one of the comments she may drop as you place a bet is "C'mon! Baby needs a new pair of shoes!"
Ancient Conspiracy: Revealed by the President that the Vaults were not meant to protect the people from the Nuclear War, their true role was to determine if the population can handle being isolated from the outside world under various conditions, all in the name of constructing the Space Ark.
An Aesop: A recurring aesop throughout the game is the importance of peaceful coexistence and mutual cooperation. Each of the rivaling towns have something the other side wants or needs, and getting them to cooperate with each other will result in a happier ending for both sides.
And I Must Scream: A minor one for Marcus. He reveals that he's got the worst wedgie in the world. As a super mutant, whose clothes are permanently bonded to him...
Anything That Moves: The game allows the player to go this route (although it is generally easier with a female character, as Most Writers Are Male, and there is only handful of homosexual men in the game, but not vice versa) and awards the player a reputation based on it (regardless of sex): Gigolo. Oddly, you only have to sleep with one person to do it. However, if you sleep with 10 or more people, you get another one, Sexpert, which effectively gives you the benefit of a sex-related perk (Kama Sutra Master) for free.
Gigolo: Let's be honest: You sleep with anything that walks on two legs. Sometimes, you're not even that discriminating.
On the flip side there is the Virgin of the Wastes reputation which was cut from the final game. It was put back in the Restoration Project Fan Patch.
Avenging the Villain: Frog Morton in Redding has three older brothers: Toad, Newt, and Snake Morton. Killing Frog will trigger random encounters with his stronger siblings across the course of your adventures. Of special note is the Continuity Nod present in the New Khans, who were organized by the only remaining member of the Khans from Fallout. They exist to bring down the New California Republic, who asked the Vault Dweller of the first game to wipe out the Khans.
The Vindicator Minigun, despite being the strongest gun in the game, proven to take down The Dragon in one combat turn using the right build, eats up rare ammo like a starved pig.
The Flamers are the only way to get the "flailing around on fire" death, yet they just suck in combat.
The Solar Scorcher does plenty of damage and recharges on sunlight, for free. A perfect choice for the miserly... until you're ambushed at night or have to fight underground/indoors. Better hope you packed a backup.
Awesome yet Practical: The Bozar and P90c eat up common ammo like starved pigs. Unarmed and Melee Weapons also fit. The bozar also often achieved the hilarious "bits blown away until the target is a pair of legs and stump of spine" animation
The Avenger Minigun also uses common ammo, fires more shots than the Vindicator minigun, and, with large amounts of Min-Maxing is capable of dealing over 5000 damage in one burst (The end boss has 999 hp).
The Alien Blaster does major damage and only consumes one energy cell per shot. Quite cost-effective.
Fighting unarmed in Power Armor is especially awesome and quite potent.
The Gauss Rifle. Super accurate, nigh constant critical hits, and high damage. Usually ended up getting the "entire chest blown out" animation after 1 or 2 shots. It's also single-shot, which makes it the best weapon to give to your small-arms wielding companion, usually Cassidy.
Badass Army: The Enclave Troopers. They travel in small squads, have high health, amazing accuracy, are almost completely invincible against bullets and lasers due to their power armor, and carry the greatest weapons in the game such as Plasma Rifles and Gauss Rifles. Each and every one of the soldiers is capable of easily curb stomping entire groups of raiders by themselves, and they will utterly destroy you if you try to attack them at any time in the game except at the very end when you have several companions and almost as good weapons and armor as them (or if you did the quests in Navarro, their exact same equipment).
To a lesser degree, the combat armor wearing, assault rifle wielding NCR Rangers. Luckily, these guys are friendly (unless you're a slaver). Retconned into Elite Mooks in Fallout: New Vegas.
Beef Gate: Trying to explore along the coast at anything less than near-endgame levels will have you utterly curbstomped by stormtroopers in power armor. Hanging around other parts of the map before about the mid-game is a good way to be splattered by Super Mutants armed with miniguns and rocket launchers.
Berserk Button: Don't let Sergeant Dornan catch you without a Power Armor. In fact, you shouldn't speak with him at all.
The Enclave Communication Officer will start stuttering in frustration if you don't know who the president is.
BFG: Aside from the guns that are meant to be big, like rocket launchers,miniguns, and flamethrowers, the Bozar stands out for being a giant rifle with immense damage and plentiful ammo, making it the most Awesome yet Practical weapon in the game. In terms of ammunition access and weight of said ammo (which is probably the most important factor for Fallout's BFGs), Bozar is the best burst weapon cost and damage wise. And probably the only one you don't want to rise your skills for, as the less skill you got, the bigger the spread, ending with mowing down entire gangs or squads in single burst. Just don't have anyone friendly standing between you and the target...
The Bozar was originally planned to be more like a sniper rifle, which is hinted at by its inventory graphics and description. The gun used by the Chosen however has the graphics, sound and function of a minigun. It also had decent damage per shot and used naturally armor piercing ammo, so it still worked on armored targets, unlike some of the burst fire guns. In it's appearance in the Gun Runners' Arsenal DLC of Fallout: New Vegas, it's officially a Light Machine Gun with a scope.
Item description: "Well, THIS would have been good to have at the beginning of the goddamn game."
Brain in a Jar: Skynet, which can be recruited by constructing him a body, brain included. How useful it is depends on which brain was installed.
Cartography Sidequest: Two of them given by Vault City, scouting a route to NCR and the exploration of Gecko's surrounding territory.
Chaos Architecture: Mostly averted, although Vault 15's entrance changes from game to game.
Cool Car: The Chryslus Highwayman. Nearly two centuries of neglect and it only needs one part to get it going, and is capable of holding your entire party, which can potentially include a super mutant, a deathclaw, and a brain-bot containing the personality of a pre-War AI. It gets even cooler as you find and install its upgrades. The trunk was notable in that it could hold several suits of power armor, a half dozen miniguns, and an infinite amount of ammo
Crapsaccharine World: Vault City. The first time you see it you'll think you've just stepped into heaven, with its green grass and clean, beautiful buildings. However, it doesn't take much time to see how self-righteous and racist the city's leaders are, and that slavery is openly practiced in it.
Darker and Edgier / Lighter and Softer: Somehow manages to be both compared to Fallout 1. On one hand, Fallout 2 has a ton of humor, way more than Fallout 1, and the mood is overall much more lighthearted. However, one the other hand, the themes are much darker, rape, prostitution, drug overdoses and slavery are regular occurrences in many towns, and the villains are a pure evil instead of Anti Villains like The Master and his army.
Disc One Nuke: It's possible to pick up one of the best armors in the game early on. Granted, you have to get really lucky with avoiding random encounters in extremely hostile territory to get it. You probably need to know where the armor is — it is unlikely that random wandering will turn it up.
The NavarroRun sequence breach doesn't just give a souped-up armor, though that's obviously the best-known part. It also gives one of the highest-end weapons, and allows you to complete a quest that will probably launch you to Level 8 or higher immediately.
A bit of a straighter (and milder) example is the .44 Magnum you can get in The Den. It's relatively easy to get, only uses 4 AP to fire, and has an incredibly high rate of criticals and damage, and .44 ammo is quite plentiful.
Crit chance doesn't come from the weapon itself. But it has the "Penetrate" item flag, which may reduce armour modifiers if a comparatively low Luck check is passed.
With proper Min-Maxing you can actually unload the whole cylinder in single turn. Even without good aiming, you still deliver a lot of pain with each shot, so it's entirely possible to gun down 3 people in single turn. And if you are really lucky with crits... Only .223 Pistol is considered stronger and it comes much later.
Doom Magnet: The Pariah Dog, who sometimes tags along with you without your consent if you are unlucky enough to encounter him. He drops your Luck down to 1 and gives you the Jinxed trait. The only way to get rid of him and his ill effects is to kill him, which is a feat in and of itself thanks to his huge amount of HP and tendency to run out of range at the first sign of danger. Just to drive home that the dog is bad news, when you encounter him, he's surrounded by dead bodies.
Downer Ending: The fate of Broken Hills in two of the endings. In one, the mutants are all wiped out and the humans can't safely mine the uranium without them, while in the second, the mutants and humans wipe each other out. The third ending is more bittersweet; humans and mutants continue to live peacefully until their mine runs dry and the town disperses with their economical backbone gone. Hey, it's a mining town.
Fallout: New Vegas implies that the third ending is canon, though not much explanation is given. On the brighter side, the mutants from Broken Hills went on to find their own town.
Drill Sergeant Nasty: Sergeant Dornan, the Enclave trooper, exemplifies this trope when spoken to when the Chosen One travels to Navarro.
To the extent that "Cannibal" Johnson, who witnessed the ear-blistering rant, still has vivid memories of it over 40 years later.
Dummied Out: Because Black Isle Studios ran short of development time, quite a few places and quests were only halfway implanted or completely left out of the game, which leaves a couple of plot threads, such as finding Sulik's sister and exposing the cattle rustlers in Klamath, hanging in the wind. Fanmade patches, such as the Fallout 2 Restoration Project (still updates regularly), seeks to restore them to a playable state. Still, there are many things even the Restoration Project has yet to explain, such as the "Brotherhood" area in the Oil Rig.
Easter Egg: One of the original Wide Open Sandbox games should of course have these in spades, including an actual egg that can be found.
Eat the Dog: Cousin Nagor's beloved dog, Smoke, will eventually be turned into a delicious meal by least-favorite aunt Morlis if you take too long getting the GECK.
Also, a girl in the Den will tell you a story about how her cat Cuddles was cute and adorable and loving, until the day food started to get scarce...
Elite Mooks: The Enclave soldiers on the Poseidon Oil Rig.
Empty Room Psych: Such that veteran players will know which rooms not to enter in subsequent play throughs.
Exposition of Immortality: Harold, the ghoul-like mutant first encountered by The Vault Dweller in Fallout 1, can be encountered once again by the Chosen One. Along with much of the ghoul population of Necropolis, he's settled in an abandoned nuclear power plant and formed a small town named Gecko.
Even Evil Has Standards: The player can invoke this by doing some mildly evil things throughout the game, but being disgusted at Myron killing a bunch of slaves to get the formula for Jet right.
Chosen One: You killed hundreds of human beings to test a drug?
Myron: Who cares about a bunch of slaves anyway? We didn't want the drugs killing our customers.
Executive Meddling: The publisher, upon seeing the finished game, demanded that a tutorial level be included, and the developers were forced to rapidly knock one out literally days before release. The universally-loathed Temple of Trials was the result.
Failure Is the Only Option: The Hubologists. All of their endings involve them doing something wrong with their rocket and dying hideously. In fact, not helping is probably doing them a kindness as it leads to a (relatively) swift death in an exploding rocket rather than slowly asphyxiating inside their ship from a lack of oxygen scrubbers.
Faking the Dead: Re-added content from the Restoration Project reveals that Ian, fearing that remnants of the Master's army may come after him, had the Vault Dweller pretend that he had died "in a blaze of glory" in the battle with Lenny in Necropolis. He shows up in Vault City under the alias "Old Joe".
False Flag Operation: The proper resolution of the first quest done for the Wrights in New Reno involves uncovering this. The one responsible for Richard's death is Louis Salvatore, head of the Salvatore family. He ordered Renesco to spike a dose of Jet with radscorpion poison, which some Salvatore hitmen then force-fed Richard with. Since the Mordinos control Jet production and distribution, the Wrights would obviously suspect the Mordinos as the ones who ordered the hit; the result would be the Wrights and Mordinos softening up each other in a gang war to the point they would be unable to put up any meaningful resistance against the Salvatores. With no fear of getting backstabbed by third parties in the process, the Salvatores would then be free to move against the Bishops to eliminate the last rival family and assume total control over New Reno.Were it not for the Chosen One's efforts,it would've worked.
Felony Misdemeanor: Picking up a single coin from the bottom of the well in Modoc will cause you to lose one karma point. That's about the equivalent of killing a civilian.
Final Boss Preview: Early in the game you're likely to encounter Frank Horrigan and a couple of Enclave soldiers butchering a random family.
Five-Man Band: Your party can be one with sufficiently high Charisma.
The too many items bug. While the precise reasons are unknown, when you have too many items on a map and/or too many entries in your Pip Boy, the game corrupts saves. This bug may have been present in Fallout, but that game wasn't big enough to trigger it.
Also infamous "vanishing car bug" rendering either a trunk or the whole car unavailable for the rest of the game. Not necessarily a gamebreaker unless you put some important items in the trunk.
Less obvious than the previous two, letting the car run out of juice while fast traveling will create a map-marker for the drained car. If you happen to run out of juice on a square that already has a map marker, you can kiss the car and everything in the trunk goodbye.
Generation Xerox: The Chosen One's bastard child, which he had with one of the Bishop women, inherits his father's badassery. At the age of thirteen, he takes control over the Bishop crime family, and eventually leads them to victory over the other families in New Reno. Another trait he inherits is a eagerness to explore the Wasteland, and he therefore has a intimate knowledge of the whole Core Region's geography.
The NCR Rangers' method of restoring law and order to areas outside of the Republic's control is by shooting all slavers and raiders they come across.
Also, the New California Republic itself might also count as that. They are dedicated to noble values such as democracy and the rule of law. However, they are also willing to engage in shady and sometimes unethical means to get the job done.
The Guards Must Be Crazy: It is embarrassingly simple to explore the two Enclave bases in the game. You can sneak into Navarro simply by presenting yourself as a new recruit, and the head of security then directs you to the armory where you can freely take as many weapons and a suit of Powered Armor. You can also get one of the mechanics to leave his post just by telling him another mechanic he has a rivalry with insulted him, allowing you to loot his station, and can get a piece of technology needed to access the oil rig by asking for it and telling the right lies. At said oil rig you can wander freely as long as you're in your Enclave Powered Armor, and no one will suspect you even as you loot everything in sight. The only people who become aware of who you are are ones you reveal yourself to willingly.
Gun Twirling: Your character will do this when you holster certain guns.
Hair-Trigger Temper: You can crank call the Enclave while at Gecko's power plant. The communications officer on the other line has a very short temper, launching into a rant and threatening to "kick your fucking ass" the moment you show even a sign of ignorance about who the president is.
Hash House Lingo: The Enclave cook in will gladly, if you ask for food, serve you "shit on a shingle" and points to the "snow and fly shit" on the table. "Shit on a shingle" is chipped beef on toast, "snow and fly shit" are salt and pepper.
Heroic Mime: Averted. Unlike the first game, your character will talk outside of the dialogue window from time to time, mainly in the form of snarky comments.
"When I was one, I was dropped on the porch. When I was two, I had pneumonia. When I was three, I got the chicken pox. When I was four, I fell down the stairs and broke six ribs. When I was five, my uncle was decapitated by a watermelon. When I was six, my parents hit me in the head with a shovel. When I was seven, I lost my index finger to my pet rat. When I was eight, my dog Spike got hit by a tractor.
When I was nine, my mother lost her arm to a rabid Brahmin. When I was ten, my sister was torn to bits by a pack of dogs. When I was eleven, my grandfather killed himself because I was ugly. When I was twelve, my grandmother killed herself because I was ugly. When I was thirteen, my father poked out his eyes with a pitchfork in a drunken stupor.
When I was fourteen, my brother lost his hand to a wallaby. When I was fifteen, my aunt choked to death on a chicken bone. When I was sixteen, I lost my cousin to a badger. When I was seventeen, I cut off my left big toe with a hoe. When I was eighteen, my father lost his right leg to the same tractor that killed my dog. When I was nineteen..."
The Sniper perk makes any gun a Lethal Weapon. It's entirely possible to kill with a BB gun with Ludicrous Gibs animation thanks to the nature of critical hits and how skills work in combat. Gauss rifle is just the easiest way to get such animations.
Instant A.I., Just Add Water: Subverted. The Brotherhood supercomputer, ACE, reveals that most governments stated that, officially, Artificial Intelligence wasn't possible, but the American and Chinese governments had actually developed them secretly behind closed doors. Most commercial supercomputers had a sort of limited AI, like ACE, but didn't have emotions or true abstract thought. Though if you ask, he says he sometimes thinks he feels lonely, possibly meaning he had evolved to true Artificial Intelligence.
Irony: Remember how your grandfather, the Vault Dweller, was exiled from Vault 13? He was exiled because according to the Overseer, he would kill all of them if you stayed. He left. Other people in the Vault left. Those who stayed died.
I Was Quite a Looker: Tandi, the idealistic and attractive young woman from Fallout 1 is now the president of the New California Republic. The stress of being a politician has clearly not treated her well for the last few decades. Then again, she is over 90 years old by the time of Fallout 2.
Jump Scare: If you take too long on the main quest, the Shaman will visit you in your dreams (Three times) telling you to hurry up. This is especially jarring since he only appears after a certain amount of time so unless you keep track of every second, he will surprise you. Also, he is very creepy looking to begin with.
Karma Meter: Mostly done in a realistic way however rape, stealing, adultery, drug abuse, and a lot of things don't affect your karma. The "karma" meters are a little misleading as they don't measure how good or bad you are but what your reputation is in the different towns and in the game world in general. So if you did a pretty bad thing in an area where there's supposedly no one around to witness it, your karma won't be affected.
Myron gets an entirely deserved death that is infinitely appropriate. It happens after the end of the game. He's drinking in the Den, when an addict kills him for money to buy more Jet. His name is quickly forgotten, and only his invention, Jet, survives him, causing suffering decades after his death.
Also Dr. Schreber who can be killed without alarming the entire base because his lab is soundproofed to muffle the screaming subjects of his experiments. Feel free to appreciate the irony while you paint the walls with his favorite organs.
Kick the Son of a Bitch: NCR as a whole is doing some very shady stuff in order to forcefully annex Vault City, including collaborating with a mob boss and using raiders to harass it, and even goes so far as to turn its people into second-class citizens in some of the endings. These would be very serious charges if Vault City wasn't such a bigoted, elitist society that fuels the slave economy.
Sheriff Marion: Hey, I didn't make that one up - he did. With puns that bad, I'd say that gives you just one more reason to kill 'im.
Laser-Guided Karma: One of the endings for Vault City leads to their supplies running out some ten years after the game ends, and running to the NCR, which they have repeatedly insulted and refused to trade with, for aid. NCR, and the rest of the wasteland, does make them citizens.. Second-class citizens, who don't have as many rights, and are treated with scorn by almost everyone.
Lethal Joke Item: A character with the Red Ryder Limited Edition BB Gun, a high Small Guns skill, and decent Luck is effectively unstoppable. Give that character 10 luck, 10 agility, Action Boy(2), and a large stockpile of drugs and cookies and they are unstoppable.
To a lesser extent, flares in the early-mid game. Although lit flares normally only do 1 point of damage when thrown at an enemy, they only require one AP to throw and can even cause instant death or blindness to enemies in power armor when aimed at their eyes. If you combine a decent throwing skill with the Living Anatomy perk, each flare that hits an enemy target will always do 5 damage, regardless of how much armor they have. With a maxed out Agility stat, this means that you can potentially do more damage with each turn than you could with any of the starting firearms.
Let's Get Dangerous: Up until the Enclave oil rig the game is generally not too serious. But when you get there, the jokes stop, the music gets eerie, and the plot kicks into overdrive.
Magikarp Power: Believe it or not, but this trope goes to Vic. He is acclaimed as totally useless character both in and out of universe. It's going so far that your character starting Repair skill tends to be higher than his when you first meet and he's supposed to be your team mechanic. But what most people are unaware of is that he can level-up six times, have 12 Action Points (read - two shots per turn) and he can use rifles and energy weapons, which he effectively use just after two level-ups. By comparison, resident Badass Cassidy got 10 Action Points on his final level, giving him only one shot per turn and his Small Guns skill is considerably lower.
Manual Leader, AI Party: The recruitable party members allow you to customize how close or far they stay from you, how often to use drugs to heal themselves, and how to use their weapons.
The Millstone: The dreaded Pariah Dog, who turns your party into a bumbling, error-prone laughingstock.
Minus World: Try pressing "3" next time you zone into the Den. (This does not work with people using the Megamod or Restoration project.
Modular Epilogue: The ending is a series of short epilogues detailing the future of the different settlements the player visited, with multiple endings highlighting the player's actions and their moral implications.
Multiple Endings: Every town (except the mostly irrelevant Klamath) and some of the factions have several different endings. Which ones you get depends on your actions (or lack of actions) through the course of the game.
Mythology Gag: In reference to brahmin speaking more often than intended in the first game (possibly due to a bug):
Ed: Swear I heard one of them brahmin speak. "Moo, I say," or somesuch.
What's funnier is when the Brahmin actually say that, a Shout-Out to a MUD that one of the game developers used to play.
Neighbourhood Friendly Gangsters: Relatively speaking, the Wrights are a lot more ethical than Reno's other crime families in that they actually have some concern for the well-being of New Reno itself.
Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: If you choose to optimize the power plant in Gecko, Vault City invades and enslaves all the ghouls. Bastards.
There's a subquest where you can convince Vault City that it's preferable to ally with Gecko and trade them medical supplies for their excess power. Unfortunately this option is inaccessible due to a bug that is only fixable with unofficial patches.
Nonstandard Game Over: If you don't make it, you get to see your corpse still decked in your gear decomposing in the desert sun, all while a grim voice-over gives a short statement about your demise. Gee, the wastelands are unforgiving.
Not Rare Over There: Vault City has an entire apartment full of water chips, the object that half the first game is spent trying to obtain.
Obvious Beta: The numbers of bugs and things left half-finished are quite high, even with the official patches installed. Luckily, there are a lot of unofficial patches as well. Sadly, these patches, due to the larger game world, are more likely to trigger the above Game-Breaking Bug.
One-Man Army: Sort of averted with the Player Character. After maybe the fourth town, you'll almost always be tagged by 2-5 companions. Most fights waged against forces of equal training and armament are very dangerous, due to the fact that a lucky critical can quickly put you down in a single hit, and even if you win against your foes in a Curb-Stomp Battle you'll rarely find a group of more than 7-8 human(oid) enemies at a time.
Playable Epilogue: Not much changes after the ending, except for some characters congratulating you on defeating the Enclave. And you can get the Fallout 2 Hintbook from Father Tully. It's not that bad, by that point in the game you have to go to Navarro anyway and Dr. Schreber's a pretty easy to kill and don't have to worry about any of the guards as the room is soundproofed.
Press X to Die: The nuke in the Enclave base will kill you if you fiddle with it with a low science skill.
Punch Clock Villain: Most Enclave soldiers seem to regard their duties as a job and nothing more. The personnel at Navarro base seem to be pretty ordinary people no different from average soldiers for the most part, complete with idle gossip and romance amongst the personnel. Then again, it doesn't seem to bother them too much if their job sometimes involves gunning down unarmed peasants with miniguns. For example, directly after Frank Horrigan brutally murders a member of the Brotherhood of Steel, he casually asks his soldiers if they are up for lunch.
Reckless Gun Usage: One of the ways to assassinate Orville Wright is to give one of his kids a loaded gun and tell them "Why don't you wave this in your daddy's face and pull the trigger?"
Red Herring: In the beginning you receive two quests from Elder: Find Vault 13 and find merchant Vic, who may know where to find Vault 13. When you'll find Vic, he will direct you to his friend Ed, but Ed won't give you anything except revealing most of the cities and this story goes absolutely nowhere.
In fact averted. Ed doesn't remember where he found Vault 13 waterflask, so he gives you route of his caravana, pointing out places he visit, so you can check them out. The game simply stops railroading at this point and basically tells you "go on, check the open world".
And one of those places actually is where you must look for the Vault 13.
Screw Destiny: At one point, a pre-war supercomputer with the ability to predict the future based on available data to the point of being omniscient tells you that the chances of you succeeding in your mission are around 5%.
Sequel Difficulty Spike: So, so much, at least when it comes to combat. Even the simplest guns and armor are much harder to get in this game than in Fallout 1, and your shooting accuracy will be much lower than what you would have in the previous game with exactly the same stats.
Example: In Fallout 1, you were given a 10mm pistol right when you left the vault. In this game, you can't get one until the third town, unless you got really lucky with a random merchant inventory and a had a lot of money. (Although you can find one on a corpse during a side quest in the first town.)
In another sidequest in the first real town, you will encounter a locked door, and a damaged generator. If you can fix the generator, and unlock the door... You will find a security robot with a semi auto missile launcher. If you survive, there is a Bozar, Plasma pistol, Laser pistol, and combat armor MK 2. Sending you through a sequence of hell fit for this trope, and thoroughly averting it for most of the game.
Also, economically. Slain enemies almost never drop their armor anymore, which you could sell for thousands.
Sex God: Via the "Karma-Sutra Master" perk. Given that there is one occasion where your "score" for sex has an effect, and only if Dump Stated physical attributes and charisma (an extremely unorthodox method of play), which prevent you from qualifying for it anyways, its a Useless Item.
Shotgun Wedding: Sleep with one of Grisham's children, and, unless you pass a speech check, you will be forced to go through one of these if you don't want the whole town of Modoc trying to kill you on sight. Thankfully there is no penalty for causing your spouse harm, so feel free to get her/him killed, whored out, sold to slavery or divorce her/him by paying Father Tully with a alcoholic beverage. For extra cruelty, you can tell your former father-in-law about the death of his child, which will give him a fatal heart attack.
Suddenly Fluent in Gibberish: A variant. In the first town you reach after leaving home, you encounter a mentally stunted man who with great difficulty tells you to help safeguard some livestock. If your character has a very low intelligence score, you will be able to converse with him in very erudite grunting (the translation is given in parentheses), conveying fairly complex information.
Timed Mission: Played Straight, Averted and Subverted. The main GECK quest has no time limit unlike the first game (despite Hakunin coming to you in visions to urge you to hurry.) However, the entire game has a 13-year time limit due to technical limitations, which causes the game to abruptly end with a short cinematic when it's reached. However, you'd be likely to to everything there is to do in the game in only 2-3 years, so it's very unlikely to be an issue unless the game's been expanded with unofficial mod content.
All the miners in Mariposa qualify, but Melchior the Magician is the biggest example, because you can actually follow his story. It's not required or yields any reward, but you can. He was a miner in redding before the Enclave captured him, and he performed many magic tricks to entertain the town. When you finally find him, he's a half-crazed super-mutant who performs a final magic show, where he pulls some rather vicious rabbits out of a bubbling green FEV hat.
Horrigan is a schizophrenic boy indoctrinated with "The American Way" his entire life to become a super soldier, then being heavily gassed by FEV in a mining accident. He becomes an unthinking monster unable to come out of his suit.
Warrior Monk: Sulik fits this trope. He is most known for speaking as if he is a we, referring to all the spirits around him. He often gives the Chosen One advice pertaining to the current location he is, often vague and prophetic. He is also very very good with a Sledgehammer and submachine gun.
Salvatore's respiratory problems can be exploited by stealing his oxygen tank and (due to a bug) holding the Poison Tank at the same time. The Restoration Project makes it so that simply stealing the oxygen tank is enough to kill him via slow suffocation.
With This Herring: Seems to be played straight, but is actually averted. Your home village ends you out with nothing more than a spear, a knife and a bag of healing herbs... but a short exploration of the village shows that, by village standards, what you have been given is cutting edge.