Fallout 4, a game about a Post Nuclear War United States, with ghouls, Super Mutants, Deathclaws, raiders, gunners and anything else you can think of trying to kill you, can be completed without you actually completing anyone.
Quick recap: Fallout 4 is the latest in the successful Bethesda series of games about a post apocalyptic world, focusing on different areas in the United States in each game, with civilization trying to built itself back up after Nuclear War which pretty much devastated anything.
Fallout 4 takes place in the Commonwealth, which is pretty much Boston and the surrounding area, or what’s left of it. You wake up from cryogenic sleep inside a vault (something like a bomb shelter, but not exactly) 200 years after the bombs dropped. One of the first things you get to put your hands on is a gun in order to kill mutated roaches. This game is about advancing through killing, or at least everyone thought it is.
Kyle Hinckey broke the game. He completed Fallout 4 (personally I’ve been playing for 50 hours and I’m not even close to finishing. Damn you side missions!) without killing anyone (himself, we’ll get to that soon enough), and also did it on ‘Survival’, the highest level of difficulty. He made it all available for the masses to see through his Youtube channel, The Weirdist.
So how did he do it? It certainly wasn’t smooth, or easy. Like any Bethesda game, it took a lot of saves and re-dos.
My first attempt was dismal. I got discouraged immediately on the first quest, which insists all the raiders in one of the early missions die.
He didn’t give up, and tried again, and again. Eventually he found out that the Raiders could be left alone on that mission, and this made him move forward with his plan. He put in 75 hours into the playthrough before realizing he was backing the wrong faction, which meant he had to kill six people.
So he started over, creating Dizzy, which he perked up (the abilities you give and improve during the game) to be charismatic and built for mind games, but useless when it comes to killing. It gave Hinckey’s character the ability to convince and calm down humans and wasteland creatures, and eventually gain the ability to turn people against each other in a murderous rage. That’s how he completed the game. Some killing has to be done. It just doesn’t mean you have to do it.
In an interview last summer, Todd Howard, the game director, was asked about the different play styles the game would support, being an RPG and all. Fallout games usually allow players to approach problems and missions in a variety of ways.
I can’t tell you that you can play the whole game without violence – that’s not necessarily a goal of ours.
Even with the game pushing you towards killing certain key characters, turns out it can be done in a different way. As Hinckey said: The thing about Todd Howard is, even he doesn’t know what his games are capable of.
If you want to see Hinckey going through his playthrough to complete the game, watch his playlist.