YMMV / Fallout 2

  • Complete Monster: Frank Horrigan is a Secret Service agent and Dragon-in-Chief to President Dick Richardson. A psychopath even before his mutation, Horrigan delighted in killing whenever he could. His first onscreen appearance has him gunning down a family, including their child, for refusing his demands. Later, he gleefully kills Brotherhood of Steel agent, Matt, and wipes out the entire community of peaceful, talking deathclaws that the player had earlier befriended. Horrigan has a special hatred for "mutants", humans and creatures that have been exposed to the FEV virus or even the slightest amount of radiation. This racism leads to him aiding in the Enclave’s plan to unleash a biological weapon which will wipe out all mutated life in North America, in order to make America "genetically pure." Once defeated, Horrigan tries to activate the Enclave Oil Rig's self-destruct sequence, condemning all of his remaining allies to death, just so he can take the Chosen One with him when he dies.
  • Crosses the Line Twice: The unused icon for the "Child Killer" reputation.
  • Crowning Moment of Heartwarming: If you play as a stupid character and answer the "Why don't you have a uniform" question of one of the Enclave officers in Navarro, he loosens up a little and remarks that it's not your fault that you're slow, and adds that he has a brother just like you.
  • Demonic Spiders: Deathclaws are more numerous than ever, and the game introduces the Enclave patrols, who will absolutely end your game with their weaponry if you're at anything other than near-endgame levels.
  • Ensemble Darkhorse:
  • Even Better Sequel: This game took everything about the first one, cut the superfluous or poor parts, and polished what was left to a gorgeous finish — a larger world, more involved quests, morally complex story and characters, and considerably deeper gameplay with a variety of new equipment and enemy types. The first Fallout seems like a beta run for the sequel when one looks at everything that was improved.
  • Evil Is Cool: Frank Horrigan has his share of fans due to this.
  • Fridge Brilliance: The world of Fallout 2 is unlike most sandbox games in that it actually has an infrastructure that doesn't conveniently revolve around you. In fact, many of the game's quests relate directly to this infrastructure and lets you turn it towards drugs, slavery and general debauchery, lead it into a fragmented prosperity, unite it all under the banner of the NCR or even destroy large chunks of it.
    • To elaborate on this infrastructure, most of the land's food comes from the large Brahmin herds and farms of Modoc (whose prosperity you can restore, leading to more food, or you can let stagnate, meaning many areas are hard hit) and NCR's own stocks. Vault City and NCR are responsible for training and supplying the majority of the doctors. New Reno is the drugs, booze gambling capital, the Den is home to the biggest slave organisation, Gecko can provide power, and NCR and Vault City have self-sustained power. Vault City can give medicine and tech, Broken Hills' uranium mines provide the slugs for the power stations and Redding mines gold which backs the land's economy. You can manipulate the faction's leaders, each of whom has their own ideas of how to further their settlement, and through this the geo-political situation as a whole. Plus, you can encounter and even work for the caravans that carry the land's goods about.
  • Game Breaker: The Gifted trait makes character creation a no-brainer. Once a player creates the antidote for Jet addiction, then Jet also makes the character absurdly powerful with no drawbacks. The Slayer and Sniper perks also turn into this by making them roll criticals for every attack.note 
    • Sniper's Game Breaker status comes not from simply adding more Criticals. It comes from the fact that when a burst is fired, every round in the burst has it's own critical roll. With 10 Luck, each projectile is guaranteed to be a critical. Miniguns have up to 30 round bursts. There Is No Kill Like Overkill indeed.
    • Boxing in New Reno. If you win, you get a Karma title giving you +12 normal damage threshold, and +4% to all resistances except fire. It is cumulative with armor. Normal damage is anything that isn't plasma, laser, fire, electricity and explosive. This means that you will take no damage from most attacks, and half damage from most more powerful enemies, without taking armor into account. Most enemies who use laser, plasma, fire and explosives are either using low-tier weapons, Awesome, but Impractical weapons, or plain non-military personnel (who don't wear effective armor and don't have much Hit Points).
    • Living Anatomy and Bonus Ranged Damage. The former gives you +5 damage against biological targets, the later +2/+4 damage against everything when using firearms or energy weapons. These ignore any form of damage resistance (tested with an EMP Grenade against humans (every non-robotic enemy has a 500% resistance to EMP). The damage increase is done to each bullet. The best gatling gun (which use extremely rare ammo) fires 25 bullets by burst. Assuming half of them (rounded down) hit (and from close range, they will), you inflict 12*(5+4) = 108 points of damage, enough to kill most target, not counting the normal bullet damage that goes through the armor.
    • The infamous "Navarro Run". From the second town in the game, it was possible (though very difficult) to trek all the way to San Francisco and get a quest to infiltrate the Enclave camp to steal some Vertibird plans. If you manage to survive all the random encounters (via Save Scumming and a high Agility stat) and get to the base, then you can easily complete the mission without any combat. In addition to getting the Vertibird plans, you're also awarded with a locker full of high end weapons (including a plasma rifle) and a suit of advanced power armor, by far the strongest armor in the entire game, which makes you invincible to pretty much every enemy until you get to the endgame. Since this could be done literally in the first hour of the game, this is completely ridiculous.note 
    • It's actually quite difficult to break the game when playing on the max difficulty settings (One setting for combat-only, the other affects skill checks and skill levels), as most end-game enemies will stop missing, aim for the head, and roll criticals more often with their high-tech weapons. Keeping squishy companions alive becomes a real chore, at the very least.
    • The mighty Bozar. Despite looking like a sniper rifle it is a minigun-type weapon that can be acquired very early, has a tremendous stopping power and uses the common .223 ammo. Acquiring it might take some save scumming depending on your stealing skill and it eats up ammo like there is no tomorrow, but a single blast from it can obliterate most enemies in one or two blasts.
  • Goddamned Bats:
    • Wolves. You're wandering around the countryside trying to get to New Reno, when you get stopped by three random encounters in a row with wolves. They can't do any damage at all to decently-leveled players, but there's a ton of them, they have a high initiative, you can't skip their moves, and your companions will likely burn through the ammo of whatever very powerful weapon you've given them to kill things they can just kick! They also have a nasty habit of circling around you and mauling you to death at lower levels. There's also the rats, who stop you from traveling around and force combat with you until you just step on them.
    • The random pickpocketeers in the Den are some of the worst Goddamned Bats. They don't do anything but steal from you, and even unless your Steal skill is obscenely high, you'll have to buy your items back from one of the Den's vendors.note  Yes, this includes quest items. If you want to avoid becoming a Childkiller, you can go with a more moderate option and hit them once. They won't ever bother you again. You can also enter combat mode whenever you are within melee range of the children. They can't steal during combat, so it's not necessary to even hit them.
      • The greasy snake who actually employs the kids is considered a Goddamn Bat by his fellow townsfolk- they won't bat an eye if you just kill him to get your stuff back. He is also so, so very stupid- You can be talking to him decked out in full power armor, 6 followers and high-end rifles and he still has the balls to try and sell your own stuff to you.
    • All the enemies in the Temple of Trials. Even if you have a character specifically geared towards unarmed or melee combat, all the enemies are obnoxiously hard to hit, forcing you to use drawn-out hit-and-run tactics to avoid burning through all their Perception-lowering healing items.
  • Good Bad Bugs: The broken computer quest in NCR. After Jack has blown himself up, you could repeatedly fix the computer, gaining 3000 XP every time. Sadly, fixed in patches.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: The next exchange is hilarious with every Fallout game except 2 having a way to talk down the end-game boss into submission. Frank Horrigan's caustic disdain for diplomacy almost feels as if he were lampshading the whole issue.
    The Chosen One: Can't we talk this over?
    The Chosen One: WAIT!
  • Moral Event Horizon: Being evil is still kinda OK (although at -500 Karma, you get badass Bounty Hunters after you). Being a slaver won't make you many friends, but it's a living. Killing children, though, is an irredeemable act that will get you not only bounty hunters but also stop many people from even talking to you.
  • Nightmare Fuel:
    • The wanamingo. You know, the... things in the Redding mines. Besides being extremely difficult. They're so alien. At least you can tell that the deathclaws are mutated reptilians, but the wanamingo, you have no idea what they are.
    • Somehow managing to play so long that you reach the game's built-in 13-year time limit. Though it's only a still image of the wasteland with "THE END", the Scare Chord and blowing wind make it unnecessarily spooky, especially when you aren't expecting it.
  • One-Scene Wonder: Despite having next to no bearing on the actual plot and it being possible to play the game without meeting him at all, Sergeant Arch Dornan is one of the most memorable characters in the game on account of how absolutely ballistic his voice actor goes with the Drill Sergeant Nasty routine. The developers seem to have been intentionally aiming for this trope, since he has a "talking head" and full voice acting, which is otherwise only reserved for very important characters, which he is not.
  • Player Punch: The talking deathclaws being brutally picked off by Horrigan For the Evulz, and your entire tribe being kidnapped by the Enclave in order to test their modified FEV. The former can be prevented with the Restoration Project, but doing so requires a serious Speed Run.
  • The Scrappy:
    • First Citizen Joanne Lynette of Vault City. The developers were so aware of what an unlikeable, bigoted fascist she was that they added a hidden reward for those who have the patience and stomach to always say exactly what she wants to hear, knowing hardly anyone would ever see it.
    • Myron is completely devoid of redeeming characteristics other than the occasional bit of humor. Otherwise, he's the creator of a street drug the Mordinos are using to take over the region, and Myrion's only objection to this is that they're forcing him to make Jet more potent when he wants to make new drugs. Otherwise he's a smug, arrogant weasel. If he survives the game, the ending says that he gets killed by a Jet addict and his name is soon forgotten. Even authors of the game hated him.
    • The Pariah Dog, a random encounter that joins the party randomly and becomes a Doom Magnet for your party.
  • Scrappy Level:
  • Squick: Myron's story behind the creation of Jet.
  • Tier-Induced Scrappy: Myron is by far the weakest character in the entire game. He has an extremely limited weapon selection, low health, and will almost always run away from enemies. His only redeeming trait is the ability to make stimpaks and super-stims if you bring him the right materials.
  • Woolseyism: A minor one found in the Russian pirated version of all places (which was also how most of the Russian Fallout fans got into the series, thanks to the official version not being released until 2006), where in start-up loading screens the words "loading" were replaced with something else like (note: translation accuracy not guaranteed): "Get in the line, Sons of the bitches" (where the Chosen One is captured); "Scavengers are immortal" (Guy wearing damaged Power Armor Helmet); "Leave the hope here traveler, you won't need it" (Chosen One silhouetted against car lights); "War, War never changes" and so on. There is also an image where the "Loading" was not replaced, since it kinda fitted the image. The alternate title "Vozrozhdenie" (Rebirth, Revival) may also be this for some, if only for intended irony.

Srg. Dornan: "Troper, what are you doing here? I gave you a direct order to read the main page! NOW YOU MARCH YOUR ASS OVER THERE AND DO AS YOU HAVE BEEN ORDERED, AND DO NOT LET ME CATCH YOU HERE AGAIN, DO YOU UNDERSTAND MEEE?"