Featuring an entirely new worldspace, main quest, voice acting, and more. Think of it as one of the possibilities for The Couriers multiple choice past.
Its 2260, and Vault 18 is an okay place to live. Tucked away in the heart of the San Bernardino Mountains, its secrets have been protected by solid rock walls and the tireless efforts of the legendary Wasteland Scouts. Coach Bragg drills his Vault Ball team with military efficiency, believing that discipline and character will help bring order back to the war-shattered world. Dr. Rossman might be a little strange, but his hearts in the right place. After all, you dont get to be a Wasteland Scout without a good head on your shoulders.
The Hydroponics Lab provides plenty of cloned food, and the security system keeps any unwanted individuals out. The main struggle that Vault society faces is one of manpower.
That is where you, the Star Player, come in. Orphan. Loner. Mutant. And now, youre thrust headlong into the war outside. Whether you like it or not.
After the events of the big Vault Ball game, and being eased into the adventure in relative safety, a deadly internal conflict forces you out of Vault 18 and into the deserts of The Pass.
Theres a four-way conflict going on, with participants familiar to the franchise and others that are completely new.
- The NCR, up to their usual attempts to annex territory, fight off raiders, and bring the law back to the land.
- The Enclave, strapped for manpower, attempting to recruit anyone of pure blood into their war efforts on the East Coast.
- The Survivalist Raiders, a military dictatorship and conglomerate of numerous smaller raider tribes, united under Boss Elsdragon in their opposition against NCR rule.
- And a Super Mutant Army, swearing allegiance to their mysterious Father.
You can help tip the scales of this conflict to either side, in a typical series fashion. Or you can kill them all, and let God sort them out.
Fallout: New California contains the following tropes:
- Action Survivor: The player character, starting out as a relatively normal Vault Dweller before they Took a Level in Badass.
- Big Bad Ensemble: The Enclave sort of takes center stage as the "main" bad guy, if only because they're so identifiable. Of course, the Father and Juan Maxson-Elsdragon are major threats in their own right (and the NCR can qualify too, depending on which path you take).
- Bittersweet Ending: In one NCR ending, you succeed in destroying the Enclave (even going as far as sending the nukes to all their bases across America). However, the NCR has discovered who and what you really are (i.e a mutant-human hybrid clone of The Vault Dweller) and want you dead, locked away or experimented on. In order to keep your freedom, General Silverman smuggles you out of New California and into the Mojave Wasteland to start a new life as a courier. You also have to say goodbye to your companions from Vault 18 for good, if any have survived until this point.
- Almost all the endings (save the Super Mutant and "murderhobo" ones) counts as this since inevitably the Star Player has to leave their faction for some reason and begin a new life as The Courier.
- Brought Down to Badass: Downplayed, while the player character survived the nuclear destruction in Hopeville, their healing factor slowly diminishes to the point where it becomes very weak. Fortunately, it still works well enough to help them survive the gunshot to the head from Benny.
- Canon Character All Along: The endings (with the exception of the Mutant ending) all lead to the protagonist going through the events that lead them to wiping out Hopeville and becoming The Courier.
- Doomed by Canon: Kieva and her Shi tribe, since they eventually become assimilated into the Legion.
- The Raider Alliance as a whole, since by the time of New Vegas proper the NCR has conquered all of California and is moving into Nevada. They are either forced to join the Legion or are peacefully integrated into the NCR.
- Doomed Hometown: Vault 18. Also Hopeville, which gets obliterated by its hidden nuclear cache thanks to the Fort Daggerpoint key the player character carries.
- Driven to Suicide: Vault 18's Overseer, after losing his family to the Enclave takeover and discovering the true intentions of Vault-Tec.
- Enemy Mine: The Raider Alliance is a mishmash of tribes and gangs that would normally be at odds with each other, but are united in their hatred of the NCR.
- During the final battle at Fort Daggerpoint, this occurs twice: the NCR and the Raider Alliance stop shooting at each other and focus on the Unity and the Enclave instead. This doesn't stop them from continuing their war afterwards, though.
- Also during the final battle, the player can form a truce with the Father to defeat the Enclave.
- Fling a Light into the Future: Dr. Rossmans reason for creating a hologram copy of himself.
- Forbidden Zone: Fort Daggerpoint, with the standard 'no one who enters ever leaves' fare. Naturally the Star Player is enlisted by their respective faction to investigate. Turns out both the Father's army of super mutants and Enclave Squad Leonidas have made the fort their base.
- Gang of Hats: The tribes that make up the Raider Alliance all have hats. There's Psychos (skull makeup and chems), Nanjima Clan (Samurai), Black Vultures (bikers, with an apparent mix of Hispanic and Arabic members), Vipers (cultish snake handlers), Vault Vikings (Norse by Norsewest), Necro Nation (an all-ghoul tribe), the Voiceless (albino mutants treated like slaves), Botniks (make their own jury rigged robots), and the Old Guard (sort of an Old West theme).
- Good Thing You Can Heal: The player character has superhuman healing abilities, as a result of the Father's experiments on them. As a result, they can shrug off bullets, fatal falls and a nuclear strike. It also explains why they survived being shot point-blank by Benny in the intro to New Vegas.
- The Greatest Story Never Told: The player's exact involvement in the events in the Pass are largely forgotten by virtue of government cover-up and most of the people involved dying over time. Of note, most of the player's surviving allies died at Hopeville and Ben mentions in the Mojave that the California Tribe was eventually destroyed by the Legion.
- Hero with Bad Publicity: The Wasteland Scouts, especially Dr. Rossman. They are remembered as heroes by many in the Pass (including General Silverman.) However, they were labelled terrorists by the NCR after killing NCR mercenaries attempting to poison the California Tribals' water source.
- Multiple Endings: Considering this is a prequel to Fallout: New Vegas, the endings are largely the same, with variations depending on which faction you supported. The one ending this doesn't apply to is the unequivocally bad ending, where the Star Player agrees to help the Father, which leads to the rise of a nigh-invincible super mutant army and the total extinction of humanity. Not to mention the Empty Earth ending, where the player has murdered everything in the Pass and goes on to murder everything alive in the whole world.
- Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: In almost all epilogues, the Fort Daggerpoint key they Star Player carries sets off the nuclear arsenal hidden in Hopeville. This obliterates the settlement, kills every other Vault 18 survivor except for the protagonist, and creates The Divide. Oh, and launches Ulysses' obsession with the Courier...
- One-Man Army: In typical series fashion, and it's emphasized by the numerous quests that involve an Multi-Mook Melee. Also, it gets justified by the late-game reveal that you're a clone of the Vault Dweller with superhuman healing abilities.
- The Reveal: The player character learns that they are in fact a mutant-human hybrid clone of The Vault Dweller from the first Fallout game, with regenerative powers. The epilogues go a step further by revealing that the player character is the Courier.
- Retired Badass: Dr. Rossman, retired Wasteland Scout. The more you hear about his past exploits, it becomes more and more obvious he was right up there with the other player characters in terms of insanity.
- The Un-Reveal: Through terminal entries you can find that the Father was once a Nightkin named Bug Bear, and Word of God states your blood sample originated from a random blood splatter found on the floor at Mariposa, leaving your true identity a mystery.