It should have dawned on me much earlier. Surviving in a wasteland is not easy, it shouldn’t be easy. Realistically a person would use every advantage they have in order to survive the harsh conditions of an irradiated nightmare; but Fallout is a game. A game that even on the higher difficulty settings becomes increasingly easier as you progress. Although it does feel nice to be the big man on campus with the big guns and the big armor or the small armor coupled with the big stealth ability. The everyday in fallout is not portrayed as easy living for the NPC’s so why should it for me?
Ever since i played the Dead Money DLC for Fallout New Vegas i noticed that i really enjoyed starting up in a fresh new world with pretty much nothing but the tattered clothes on my back. So i decide to do the same with the recently released Far Harbor DLC for Fallout 4. I figured that even at level 110, the high leveled enemies are still being mowed down one by one by my Gauss Rifle. If i went to Far Harbor fully loaded, it’d be like taking candy from a drowned kitten. Headless corpses would be seen for miles, and i’d have enough Stimpaks and chems to open up a chain of pharmacies from here to Timbuktu. Not that it matters since my character is so stealthy, even his own shadow loses track of him.
So i decided to use this as an opportunity to go buck naked… Sort of. Boy did it pay off, my only regret is that i didn’t leave more behind. After picking up my partner in crime fighting, Nick Valentine from his office, i stopped by Red Rocket Truck stop and started dropping equipment. I play on “Very Hard” difficulty. I used to play on survival before it got buffed. It was tempting but these days i just don’t have the time to invest in that. For that very reason i ended up with the following list of items i took:
- Stealth Blade
- Armored Faded Trenchcoat
- Armored Battered Fedora
- Black Rim Glasses
- Rad-X & Radaway
- Enough ammo to stock an army
- Over 66000 caps
Looking back now i should have left the ammo and the caps. I never would have survived without the others though. Or maybe i would have but it would have taken me far longer to play through the game. Even so it was a hell of an experience.
Without survival mode enabled, the fog was a threat, the atmosphere was scary (thanks in no small part to Inon Zur’s excellent score), and i did things i wouldn’t normally do in the Commonwealth. I would size up my enemies and actually avoid quite a few of them. Normally when i see enemies i think “loot”. Now i was thinking “shit”. At high levels the enemies can be quite strong. This was an entirely new environment with new enemies. The first time i saw a Fog Crawler i avoided it because i didn’t know what it can do, i didn’t know how they fight. And besides it was already marked as “enraged”. I don’t know what happened to make it so pissed nor did i want to. I snuck into a parking lot once and noticed a rusted out van suddenly started moving and giant arms along with two stringy beady eyes protruded out of it. I snuck right back out of the parking lot. I was genuinely scared at times. I both loved and feared the night. It allows me to sneak about easier, but the darkness coupled with the fog and trees makes to difficult sometimes to spot creatures from afar. Since it’ll take far too long for me to sneak my way to the other side of the island i would have to simply run at times. My stealth perks offer some protection, but eventually the ambushes came. Some enemies like the Anglers and Gulpers make it their business to ambush unsuspecting fools like me.
Everything I’ve collected in Far Harbor so far I’ve kept in Far Harbor even though I’ve finished the majority of things to do. Besides wrapping some things up in the Commonwealth i haven’t been doing anything there. There’s still plenty for me to explore in Far Harbor, and i suspect that even after I’ve exhausted the content i’m still going to be spending time here.
I would implore anyone who hasn’t played it yet or anyone willing to play through it again to adopt a similar approach as i. Trust me when i say that it will make this already excellent piece of downloadable content even better.