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What to make of a certain synth at the end of the game?

shaun synth son

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#1
CyrusAmell

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*Spoiler Alert in the Fallout 4 Spoiler Forum*

 

I speak of course of the young synth Shaun, who was himself modeled on the childhood records of our own in-game son Shaun (the Father). He always reminded me of Boba Fett from Star Wars in that he was a special individual created using a process that was being used to mass produce similar individuals but as a child instead of an adult. Furthermore, his creation came at the request of the individual used as a base template for the creation of all others, in this case Father instead of Jango Fett. 

 

However, unlike Boba Fett I am not entirely sure the kid can grow up to be a badass bounty hunter with the possible risk of falling down the gullet of a giant sand monster.

 

It's not like the kid does not earn his keep, because if you give him some junk then he gives you working weapon mods (would be a great way to pay for college if there were any left). It is also interesting that while Father refers to all others synths as little more than property he does shows special concerns for the welfare of the young synth after his passing. It seems that Father always intended that the synth eventually end up with the Sole Survivor. 

 

So the kid is a 10 year old tech prodigy, but will he grow or remain forever young? It would indeed be an astounding feat for the Institute to create a machine that can actually grow in stature and composition over time so as to simulate the aging process. If not, would we need to find another brain dead synth just like we did for Curie if he ever feels like becoming an adult? When are we supposed to tell him that he is a synth and sort of our grandson to boot? When are we supposed to have that talk as well as the talk, was there a manual we were not given?

 

The game did not really answer any of these questions, instead handing the kid to us as some sort of consolation prize.

 

"We're sorry you did not find the baby that was taken from you, have this replica 10 year old child version of it. Also, he comes with handy features such as creating mods for weapons of war. Occasionally he may glitch and forget whether you are his father or mother."

 

Oh well, if he cannot age then at least he can become mayor of Little Lamplight if he wants. 


Edited by CyrusAmell, 07 January 2016 - 09:21 PM.


#2
Moraelin

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Personally I have a more disturbing hypothesis. Mind you, it's just a possibility. I'm not saying it IS so, or even probable.

So we have the following premises:

- "Father" can't be saved by medicine. He's dying, whether he wants it or not. Probably not.
- the institute can put anyone's memories into a synth
- the institute however also treats synths as no more than a sentient toaster. Father can't just put his mind into a synth (IF he even considered that) and stay head of the institute, any more than one could come back as a black guy and stay grand dragon of the KKK. He'd go straight from big boss to slave.
- the railroad ain't an option either, since putting his mind in a synth and then getting mind-wiped, well, just erases that step
- "Father" not only shows no emotion for any other synth, but really, he doesn't even give a flip about either his dead parent (it was just collateral damage to him) or his living parent. Or anyone else. He's full-tilt sociopath.
- "Father" doesn't ask you to save anyone else. In fact, not only that, but he locked them up to die. If you don't persuade him, he's perfectly ok with the rest of the institute dying locked up in their rooms when you blow up the place.
- Yet he cares that that synth kid gets to be your kid.
- Also, after trying to just see how long until you get killed, and overtly not expecting you to survive, suddenly he wants you to lead the institute.

Why? Something doesn't add up there.

Now also consider this:

- that kid can rig a legendary modification to an energy weapon. Not only that, but do it in a cave with scrap, like Tony Stark, so to speak. That's not even level 4 science, that's beyond that. It's like, level 5 science. It's not just a matter of IQ, but also of university-level education. A 10 year old who mostly hung around in a glass box or with Kellogg ain't gonna know how to do that.

What the flip?

UNLESS... he just downloaded his mind into that synth kid. The only way to be in a synth and not become a slave instantly is if he's under the protection of the director, and has enough emotional attachment from you to guarantee that protection.

Same if you go with another faction, actually. If you go with the BOS, for example, those guys would see him as an abomination of technology that has to be killed, unless someone Sentinel-rank protects him.

And let's be honest, once you have that emotional attachment, it would be trivial for a sociopath to push all the right buttons. "Oh, mommy, please, don't leave me alone... bla, bla, bla..."

Just a possibility.

#3
CyrusAmell

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I admit that it is entirely possible that the kid is not what he appears. The whole "I'm a kid that makes legendary weapons" could just be another funny Fallout quirk. Come to think of it, we never see the kid get killed even if left to "die" in the Institute. If said child came with a courser chip installed then the new Shaun could have easily gotten out. But as the adopted child of the Sole Survivor, we keep giving him stuff to tinker with and he has a moment to adjust to his surroundings. While Madison Li's team did make him Father had more than enough time to put in his own finishing touches. If Doctor Amari with her limited resources can get Curie downloaded into a synth body then who knows what Father was capable of in his spare time. 

 

So there are two possibilities:

 

1) He really is just a young child who does not know he is a synth and just happens to have unexplained technical expertise possibly added in as a discreet upgrade.

 

or

 

2) He is secretly your real son or a copy of his mind with all of his plans and ambitions, whatever those may be now that the Institute was destroyed (or not, in which case all the better). Such a revelation, if backed by sufficient off-screen secrets might make for an interesting DLC where we have to go looking for him and find this out. I would expect him to run off to Vault Zero and merge with the super computer there that commands a robot army before enacting a scheme to take over the world or some crap like that (assuming Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel never happened). 

 

As an aside, I don't think Father locked up anyone to die. He was in bed, dying of cancer and outside his room the Institute was fighting for its life against who knows what. When his own father comes in he simply tries to remain defiant but when prompted will try to help minimize casualties by giving you the means to disable a few gen 2 guards to make the fighting a little easier. In and of itself, nothing nefarious about that. 

 

For the moment, I want to believe that the synth Shaun is an innocent and a last attempt at a legacy by my character's real son. But hey, whatever makes a better story. 


Edited by CyrusAmell, 07 January 2016 - 11:16 PM.


#4
CyrusAmell

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Wait, hold on. There is something else. There is this crazy fan theory that your son in Fallout 4, Shaun, is actually your father James from Fallout 3. Crazy right? It is, but...

 

 

Now, the only reason this theory did not seem credible to me is because it does not amount to much. Shaun dies at the end of Fallout 4 and he does not explain any of it.

 

But, if what is possible about the young synth Shaun is true then this theory can be built upon and then we can get a long speech explaining it all at the culmination of some interesting adventure. Granted, I think they would be retreading ground if we had another nefarious child with the mind of an adult causing some havoc. 

 

It does sound pretty convoluted when you think that hard about it. My mind hurt...


Edited by CyrusAmell, 07 January 2016 - 11:57 PM.


#5
Moraelin

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As an aside, I don't think Father locked up anyone to die. He was in bed, dying of cancer and outside his room the Institute was fighting for its life against who knows what. When his own father comes in he simply tries to remain defiant but when prompted will try to help minimize casualties by giving you the means to disable a few gen 2 guards to make the fighting a little easier. In and of itself, nothing nefarious about that.


You do realize though, that you need to pass a speech check for him to give you the password to let them out, right? Otherwise, no dice.

#6
CyrusAmell

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As an aside, I don't think Father locked up anyone to die. He was in bed, dying of cancer and outside his room the Institute was fighting for its life against who knows what. When his own father comes in he simply tries to remain defiant but when prompted will try to help minimize casualties by giving you the means to disable a few gen 2 guards to make the fighting a little easier. In and of itself, nothing nefarious about that.


You do realize though, that you need to pass a speech check for him to give you the password to let them out, right? Otherwise, no dice.

 

 

That was just to make him realize the necessity. He was an old man on his deathbed trying to be defiant, as I said, so he would have needed some convincing. Besides, the code he gave us did not help his people - it was a bargain, one he could not have known his father would follow. Would you trust someone who betrayed you like that? There was no need to evacuate immediately because the fighting was still going on and the core was not set to detonate yet. The speech check in part pushed him to realize that it was truly the end. 

 

So about our F3-father/F4-son=grandson hybrid theory. Is it not interesting?


Edited by CyrusAmell, 08 January 2016 - 01:30 AM.


#7
Moraelin

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Seems somewhat unlikely, especially since the only real resemblance is disappearing as soon as you edit the character and the wife.

#8
CyrusAmell

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Seems somewhat unlikely, especially since the only real resemblance is disappearing as soon as you edit the character and the wife.

 

Both characters disappear quickly when the game begins, both are the object of a long search before another part of the game begins, both seem to die right in front of you (in the case of Shaun more permanently) and, lastly, both try to leave the player character with a place to live underground where it is safe. There is a pattern, and it could all come together really easily. 

 

And this explains a possible purpose for the young synth Shaun, don't you think? And from the perspective of an F3 player, you are actually playing your own grandparent. 

 

And if the Courier from New Vegas is actually a synth, for which there is some evidence, then the characters in F3, New Vegas, and F4 are all related in some way. I know New Vegas was made by Obsidian while F3 and F4 were made by Bethesda Softworks but it's always possible that there is a connection.

 

Now if Bethesda does not give a flying mole-rat eyeball about any of this then fine, give us another dlc were we get abducted by aliens or have to settle a dispute between warring tribals. Then again, we can go north to Canada and fight mutant moose and crazed mounties amidst a permanent nuclear winter. 


Edited by CyrusAmell, 08 January 2016 - 01:52 AM.


#9
Moraelin

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The fact that two characters are the same archetype and share some tropes is anything but evidence that they're the same person. In fact, quite the contrary, when one of the coincidences is DYING. Most people tend not to have lives that repeat verbatim, but even less so when it involves dying twice :wink:

But ok, let's discuss that. The most important bit is that when you talk to him on the rooftop, Shaun says he's never set foot outside the institute before, since he was brought as an infant. So there goes that theory right there.

Plus, most of it doesn't make sense anyway, really. For a start, James has been in a vault between 2258 and 2277 and putting up with an a-hole overseer and all to protect his kid. Which makes no sense if he was a VIP of the institute, and could keep his kid even safer and healthier that way.

His search for prewar knowledge and dangerous radiation experiments to purify water also make no sense, if he has access to pretty much all the pre-war science that the CIT survivors took underground. In fact, some of the old labs and computers are still very much accessible from the institute, or viceversa, if you follow all the ways of getting in to blow them up. Plus the Institute obviously can purify enough water to even use it as decor, and it's not just recycled. In fact, it has water coming in from some very irradiated sewers. No problem there.

James has to ally himself with the BOS for his project, and later rely pretty much on just you to clear the way, when the head of the SRB is right in Rivet City.

But more importantly, really, the personality doesn't match. James is super-passionate about helping the people of the commonwealth, while Father is a complete sociopath even when it comes to his one remaining parent. (In the same discussion on the roof, when he says he freed you just as an experiment to see how long you'd survive, he also states, and that's a direct quote, "I had no expectations that you'd survive out here". So, yes, he just wanted to see how long until his one remaining parent DIES.) And the closest he can bring himself to watching the people of the commonwealth is from the roof of the CIT.

#10
CyrusAmell

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The fact that two characters are the same archetype and share some tropes is anything but evidence that they're the same person. In fact, quite the contrary, when one of the coincidences is DYING. Most people tend not to have lives that repeat verbatim, but even less so when it involves dying twice :wink:

But ok, let's discuss that. The most important bit is that when you talk to him on the rooftop, Shaun says he's never set foot outside the institute before, since he was brought as an infant. So there goes that theory right there.

Plus, most of it doesn't make sense anyway, really. For a start, James has been in a vault between 2258 and 2277 and putting up with an a-hole overseer and all to protect his kid. Which makes no sense if he was a VIP of the institute, and could keep his kid even safer and healthier that way.

His search for prewar knowledge and dangerous radiation experiments to purify water also make no sense, if he has access to pretty much all the pre-war science that the CIT survivors took underground. In fact, some of the old labs and computers are still very much accessible from the institute, or viceversa, if you follow all the ways of getting in to blow them up. Plus the Institute obviously can purify enough water to even use it as decor, and it's not just recycled. In fact, it has water coming in from some very irradiated sewers. No problem there.

James has to ally himself with the BOS for his project, and later rely pretty much on just you to clear the way, when the head of the SRB is right in Rivet City.

But more importantly, really, the personality doesn't match. James is super-passionate about helping the people of the commonwealth, while Father is a complete sociopath even when it comes to his one remaining parent. (In the same discussion on the roof, when he says he freed you just as an experiment to see how long you'd survive, he also states, and that's a direct quote, "I had no expectations that you'd survive out here". So, yes, he just wanted to see how long until his one remaining parent DIES.) And the closest he can bring himself to watching the people of the commonwealth is from the roof of the CIT.

 

He can lie, through his teeth. He does this almost immediately when you first meet him to try and convince his parent that the Institute is not a threat to the surface when he knows about the kidnappings and the FEV experiments and the massacres. That he never went to the surface before? Also could be a lie to try and get his parent to remain below in the safety of the Institute (you know, after they proved they were worthy of leading of course, and to not run off to find their grandson the Lone Wanderer). 

 

Shaun was not originally in charge, he had to work hard to get where he was. The Institute needed his DNA for the Gen 3 program, but once that was online and with his parent still in cryo he would have leeway to conduct his own field research regardless of radiation or risks of death.

 

As for the institute's knowledge, we don't know precisely what they were capable of 10 years ago. All of the fountains and such that you mentioned could be recent renovations, a show of ingenuity to the denizens of the Institute and any new scientists coming there from the outside. Of course they had clean water before, but it's just like their issue with power: not secure enough to remain completely detached from the surface. It's possible, and it has been shown, that the Institute has not surpassed the pre-war world in all technological fields due to their need for pre-war technology to make the Institute self-sufficient power wise. A GECK would function as a similar plot device.

 

Perhaps Shaun getting Project Purity online was his way of proving himself worthy to become the director? Becoming director was the work of decades he said, but he never said what exactly he did to deserve it. So all that crap he went through on the surface, the risks and horrors, was not for the people of the Capital Wasteland but for a chance at the job of a lifetime. It was all just a massive experiment to see if an efficient way of getting clear water could be enacted in a limited environment. The institute would need a way to get clean water to ensure it could remain permanently isolated. The sheer abundance of water we see that the Institute has, the fountains and such, could be a direct result of the success of Project Purity. They would have had clean water before but now they would never have to worry about water, so the issue when we get there is only about power. 

 

And he would have had to leave his son/daughter in Vault 101 at least until Project Purity was complete, then he could return (with a few Coursers for the sake of "persuasion"). 

 

He is also dying of a dangerous cancer, in a world with radaway, stimpacks and, well, the institute. The last we saw of James he was being hit with a ton of radiation and if Colonel Autumn could survive then a disguised Institute scientist would have a few tricks up his sleeve. He could have used a secret teleportation device, enough for a one-way trip back home with no time to grab his only child.

 

The family he started along the way? It was something to pass the time, and he could take them back to the Institute to live in harmony when this was all done. His wife was also a scientist and would fit right in (she may have even been from the Institute). Maybe when Project Purity failed Shaun/James went into exile in Vault 101 and left only because there was a chance to finish what he started. Why should he go back to the Institute and face mockery? The death of his wife would have impacted him pretty hard as well. And perhaps the seeming betrayal by the world above when the Enclave attacked pushed him over the edge to make him the mean person he is when we deal with him in Fallout 4. If this were true, it would make him the most fascinating character in the Fallout universe by far.


Edited by CyrusAmell, 08 January 2016 - 03:25 AM.






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