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[EVOLUTION - 11] At Worlds End by NMac1983 [EVOLUTION - 11] At Worlds End by NMac1983
Hey all!

Another CyberSally piece featuring Rosie, another lesser known character in the SatAM and Archie series. This takes place at the same time as my 'Inner Cataclysm' illustration - [link] - and immediately after.

I know this is a bit of a diversion from what I said I was going to paint next (with Sally's salvage of Bunnie), but it fills a few gaps and opens the way for more of the story.

As always, hope you enjoy.

--------

Rosie stopped. Her face grimaced as she felt it.

Something screamed at her mind, shrieking from across the reaches of the Robian networks. A crushing wave of anger, intense compunction, terrible fear. It was the sound of a mind broken. It was the sound of the grief a mother shares at the loss of her child. The sound of the rage she curses the world with.

It was the sound of Sally.

Rosie began to well up as she felt Sally’s emotions overwhelm her; seeing the world through her eyes; at the sight of the life that had ebbed away in her arms.

“Oh, Tails...” Rosie uttered softly.

The young Robian looked up at her, a concerned look on his face.

“What’s the matter, Rosie? He said. Unaware of what had just transpired, his child mind not connected to the Robian networks. His whereabouts masked along with all the other children. Rosie stared down at him, taking his hand.

“Something terrible, my dear.” She said, her eyes now sad.

They continued their walk together, through the Great Forest, Rosie looking upwards towards the dying trees - so little life remained in them now. Everything was so still, no birds, no wind, no rustling of the canopies above. The schism she had felt changed the light of the day, everything seemed less saturated, laced with an almost palpable sense of foreboding.

Rosie came to a halt again, her thoughts now focused on the growing presence emanating from Robotropolis. Her spine shivered at the feeling as she turned towards the direction of the city, peering through the thick atmosphere of the forest. “Sally” She whispered. “What are you doing?”

The ominous wail of sirens filled the air, it’s ghostly sound carrying across the horizon, permeating the distance between them. The young Robian held himself closer to Rosie, now afraid. His head turning into her shawl.

“Rosie. What’s that?”

Rosie waited, listening to the networks which now grew quiet, the magnitude of what was about to happen dawning on her face.

The sirens grew silent...



“Sally! What have you done!” She gasped.



The calm was shattered by the blinding light of the distant explosion, Rosie quickly embraced the young Robian, throwing themselves to the ground as the approaching roar quaked the ground beneath their feet. It was only a moment later that they felt the searing heat as the blast hurtled them backwards. Rosie held on to the young Robian’s hand as best she could, only to be ripped from his grasp by the cataclysmic force that swept through the Great Forest. The trees bending like grass in the wind, many being ripped from the very earth and thrown up into the fiery maelstrom.

The world was bathed in the glow of a thousand suns. Rosie suddenly found herself on fire, being swept away in the swirling chaos of this nuclear storm.

The shock-wave past them by, Rosie found herself dumped at the remains of a once mighty Redwood tree. The forest had taken the brunt of the explosion but was now completely ablaze. Rosie mustered all the power her Robian body would give, frantically rolling and patting out the flames that enveloped her, then bringing herself to her feet; her shawl was torn and burned, her chassis tarnished from the extreme heat. She desperately searched for the young Robian who had been so violently thrown from her.

“Kaylan!!” She cried out, trying to get a fix on his position. “Kaylan, where are you?!” Her body staggered and swayed as she struggled to stay on her feet, her systems confused, the world still spinning around her.

She wandered through the inferno for nearly an hour before she picked up something, barely detectable. It was Kaylin’s homing signal, it must have activated automatically, producing a sound that only other Robians could hear. It led Rosie to a nearby opening in the ground, an old sinkhole, someone had been digging for water here at some point. “Kaylan!” She called again.

“Over here!” a tiny voice cried back. Rosie looked down into the sinkhole, it was around five meters deep, her eyes catching the dim blue glow of Kaylan’s power core. “Hold on my dear. I’m coming!” She made her way down the embankment at the far side of the opening, in to the relative darkness of the sinkhole, always glancing back at Kaylan, making sure he was still there. “Nearly there Kaylan.” Her Robian joints ached, the thermal damage to her systems beginning to set in. As she approached Kaylan she heard him quietly sobbing, terrified to move, curled up in a fetal position. “It’s all right Kaylan, I’m here.. I’m here.” She looked over him, examining him for injury.

His frame had suffered the same thermal tarnishing as her own, she gently pried his left arm away, Kaylan recoiling instinctively. “Let me see, Kaylan. I have to look.” Rosie said, gently pulling away his arm again to expose the large fissure in his right shoulder he had been shielding. The exterior casing had split exposing the inner mechanics. Rosie took a breath at the sight of it, his fragile body had, by some miracle, survived the blast and had also taken the impact of the fall down here. But she also noticed his power core had begun to pulse. It slowly surged, matching his breathing and became most visible at the site of his injuries. Rosie looked more closely and noticed a blue glowing deposit at the edges of his wounds. “What is this?” Rosie thought. She’d never seen anything like it and she didn’t notice it on her own wounds. The glowing deposit seemed to dim and set into new plating, Kaylan’s body seemed to be regenerating itself somehow. But how this was possible she didn’t know, she’d never seen any Robian do this, but realised she’d never seen any Robian child damaged this severely.

She sat with him for a while, Kaylan’s head resting on her lap, her hand gently caressing the side on his face. She started humming to him, an old tune she’d known since she was a child, trying to bring some calm to this nightmare that had been unleashed on them. She found herself beginning to drift off into an exhausted sleep. Invited by the cool darkness, her mind began to shut down as her own systems began to take account of all that had happened. Trying to make sense of it all.

Rosie didn’t know how long they had both slept as she roused herself back into consciousness again, she looked down at Kaylan, who was beginning to stir as well. His injuries were more or less gone, and his core had returned to a normal steady glow. She could barely believe he’d been injured at all, closing her eyes and smiling, giving thanks to whatever had saved him from his wounds.

The two of them emerged from the sinkhole, the flames had died down somewhat, the land covered with a thick layer of ash, the heavy orange glow of surrounding fires still present, making the land resemble some hellish interpretation of winter. The area around them was much more open than before, as most of the trees had been flattened by the blast, allowing them to see the distant horizon of Robotropolis. Or at least where it used to be.

Rosie spotted something in the fog around fifty meters away, or rather someone, at first she wasn’t sure. It was making it’s way slowly towards them.

“What’s that, Rosie? Kaylan said. Rosie didn’t answer, instead waiting for the figure to come into view. It was a Robian, and a badly damaged one at that.

“Stay here Kaylan.” said Rosie as she went off to aid the survivor. As she got nearer she saw the mangled frame of the Robian that stood before her, it’s emaciated shell blackened and charred, it’s innards fused and barely functional. It was a female Robian, she could just make it out as they reached one another. She was carrying someone, the blackened remains of another, it’s arm hanging limply.

“Are you okay?” Rosie asked as she took in the sight of them, the Robian’s back and head had taken most of the heat from the explosion, her brain-casing exposed, it’s shell warped and distorted, her face void, eyes weary. Rosie recognised her, something in the eyes. The eyes of an Acorn.

“Sally!” she said, taken aback.

Sally said nothing, instead continuing to stare vacantly forwards as if unaware of Rosie’s presence. After a pause Sally dumped what she was carrying to the ground, then walked off again, away from them both. Rosie went down to help the burden Sally had left behind. He was Mobian, not Roboticized, she rolled him over onto his back, the charred remains of his longcoat disintegrating with her touch until his face was finally revealed to her.

It was Tails. Rosie threw her self back in disgust at his face, scorched down it’s right side, the left virtually untouched and still clearly recognisable. Rosie shuffled backwards, away from the young fox she knew and cared for so deeply. Her hand covering her mouth and nose from the acrid smell of burnt flesh, catching her cries. She looked back at Sally who was now almost obscured by the ash clouds. Rosie scrambled to her feet, starting to give chase, but coming to halt and at last falling to her knees, not seeing the point in running after her.

“Why do this, Sally?!! Why Tails?!! Why all of this!!! WHY!!?” She screamed, leaving Sally to vanish completely. Rosie collapsed forwards, her grief now released as she sobbed.

Kaylan rushed to her side. “Rosie! What’s happening? Please don’t cry..”

Rosie clambered back to her feet, and took Kaylan in close embrace, his gaze looking back at Tails’ lifeless body. They released from one another, Rosie with a look of deep thought on her face, her mind now dwelling on more important things.

“What are we going to do?” Asked Kaylan. “Rosie?”

Rosie took his hand.

“We find the others.”


“And we find somewhere safe...”
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:iconimaginatik:
Imaginatik Featured By Owner Jul 10, 2012  Student Digital Artist
Really cool story! =D
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 27, 2011
World building is a human's greatest joy.
Reply
:iconthespurgin:
Thespurgin Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2011  Student Artist
I agree. I have WAY to much fun doing myself. I almost got power drunk and feel like I'm playing god. Leaves me guilty some times.
Reply
:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2011
Well, it's a praise to god perhaps. Tee-he!
Reply
:iconthespurgin:
Thespurgin Featured By Owner Sep 17, 2011  Student Artist
I'm not sure how to respond to that one...

Oh who cares? Lol!
Reply
:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 25, 2011
Just wanna say again that your stuff is a work of art. And this style of story telling is remarkable.
Reply
:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Cheers, mate. Always nice to hear. :D
Reply
:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 26, 2011
Well, you're VERY captivating.
Reply
:iconsonictailsbros4ever:
SonicTailsBros4ever Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2011
WHOA! So cool!
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:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Cheers. :D
Reply
:iconsonicexpert:
Sonicexpert Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2011
Poor Tails... :(
Another great addition!
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:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 19, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Cheers mate. :)
Reply
:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2011
You can say that again!
Reply
:iconjayfoxfire:
jayfoxfire Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011
Wow, that's pretty dark
Reply
:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2011
Actually it's rather hopeful compared to the rest of the image series.
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011
I could spend days writing comments and feedback about this picture. I wish I still had the time to do that.

While the child robian does look strange (strangely gaunt), there's the simple fact that Kaylan could never be mistaken for a mobian in a costume that makes it effective.

'The others' so I assume after the changes in species (and Rosie having enough courage to go through with it) Rosie is still looking after those who no longer have families to call their own?

I'll admit it's pragmatic not to have a child connected to the network, after all, it's doubtful Sally's grief was the first one to be broadcast across the network and you don't want to accidentally scar them. I suppose it's the same reason you don't give kids unrestricted access to the internet.

So was Rosie a special case, or does basically ever robian on the planet know that Sally murdered the world in a selfish fit of grief?

I can imagine fashion designs got agitated how robians preferred to go around in the tin for the most part, then again, they were already a niche market for mobians anyway so I doubt they'd be able to stir up that much noise.

Kaylan's expression is one of absolute innocent, he's looking at everything in simple curiosity. I'm confused a bit on why he doesn't look symmetrical, but that aside he's decidedly interesting.

Rosie's expression is rather blank, but that could be because she's leading one of her charges through a burning forest. (One that's she's likely already grieved for.)

I like the idea of it's being the fireballs from the blasts of the generators that leave the robians all looking scorched and in that instant losing their shinny casings.

Nice idea with the idea of Sally's 'brain case showing' after the blast and being a broken mangled mess. I wonder how much of her is left after that trauma, and after she came to her senses and realized just what she had done! It's almost a surprise she didn't kill herself! It's possible she didn't have wits to at the time!

The background is a mess of oranges and browns and reds, you know, for an all consuming fire on a mass of dry wood . . . it's actually rather beautiful reminds me of a forest at twilight all things considered.

I guess Rosie's outfit used to be a hood and robe here before being half burned away to nothing?

I wonder if sleep here serves the function of getting mental garbage filtered out even if rest isn't something they -actually- need.

Never seen a robian child that injured before? I guess the mobs never got their hands on one?

It's interesting how the child still has 'cheek fur' and Rosie still has 'hair,' then again Miles was likely trying for aesthetics appeal not just practicality.

Rosie's body is something else. No glowing power lines, no heavy modifications, her body is clearly practical and streamline while still being humanoid and not being really over the top. The only real bug I have to complain about realistically is that seems kinda . . . flat chested.

And all things considered, considering they were basically creating a new species, I think Miles, Chuck, and Rotor and others would realize that being able to have children would be the only thing that would enable their survival.

I just realized, this might be set right as Rosie sees Sally but Kaylan has yet to notice the shapes.

Did Rosie bother to give Tails' corpse last rites?

Ironically it's a testament to how tough these robians are if Kaylan and Rosie could survive THAT! ; And of course if Sally could (if broken) that close to the blast zone. But Bunnie and Antione and some other robians were right near there too . . .

And I wish had the time to say more but I seems I rarely do anymore.
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:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
"'The others' so I assume after the changes in species (and Rosie having enough courage to go through with it) Rosie is still looking after those who no longer have families to call their own?"

These children are the greatest treasure the Robians have, I don't need to explain the importance of keeping them safe. As for Rosie, I guess some things never change.

"So was Rosie a special case, or does basically ever robian on the planet know that Sally murdered the world in a selfish fit of grief? "

They all know. And they will always remember. Kinda puts the magnitude of Sally's road to redemption into perspective. Don't you think?

"Nice idea with the idea of Sally's 'brain case showing' after the blast and being a broken mangled mess. I wonder how much of her is left after that trauma..."

And so begins Sally's evolution, her old shell cast aside... And just wait till you find out how she got her legs.

"The background is a mess of oranges and browns and reds, you know, for an all consuming fire on a mass of dry wood . . . it's actually rather beautiful reminds me of a forest at twilight all things considered."

I'll be honest, I feel my backgrounds need some practice. They're a tad too 'impressionist' for my liking. But I'm satisfied with the 'jist' I managed to get across, as the main focus was on the characters.

"I wonder if sleep here serves the function of getting mental garbage filtered out even if rest isn't something they -actually- need."

The Robians are descendants of biological minds, information needs to be organised and sleep provides the perfect method to do so. Tails didn't know everything about the Mobian brain, so if it ain't broke, don't fix it.

"Rosie's body is something else. No glowing power lines, no heavy modifications, her body is clearly practical and streamline while still being humanoid and not being really over the top."

Not all Robians are built for combat, plus I imagine the elderly have less of an interest in fashion than the young.

"The only real bug I have to complain about realistically is that seems kinda . . . flat chested."

o_0 Really? Well, I will endeavor to add more digital Silicone to my female Robian creations from here on out. :giggle:

"Did Rosie bother to give Tails' corpse last rites?"

I'm sure she did. She owes Tails' that much, at least.
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 18, 2011
"'The others' so I assume after the changes in species (and Rosie having enough courage to go through with it) Rosie is still looking after those who no longer have families to call their own?"

"These children are the greatest treasure the Robians have, I don't need to explain the importance of keeping them safe. As for Rosie, I guess some things never change."

So the Neo-FFs would 'mercy kill' any robian child they laid their hands on? I think this might have the side effect of the Neo-FFs thinking every robian is a grown adult or invent some paranoid fantasies about the fate of 'innocent children.'


"So was Rosie a special case, or does basically ever robian on the planet know that Sally murdered the world in a selfish fit of grief? "

"They all know. And they will always remember. Kinda puts the magnitude of Sally's road to redemption into perspective. Don't you think?"

She's already the devil, she might as well become the devil for something good eh?


"The background is a mess of oranges and browns and reds, you know, for an all consuming fire on a mass of dry wood . . . it's actually rather beautiful reminds me of a forest at twilight all things considered."

"I'll be honest, I feel my backgrounds need some practice. They're a tad too 'impressionist' for my liking. But I'm satisfied with the 'jist' I managed to get across, as the main focus was on the characters."

IMHO impressionist works for adding contrast in this case at least. Don't know if it works with others. But it decidedly works here.


"The only real bug I have to complain about realistically is that seems kinda . . . flat chested."

"o_0 Really? Well, I will endeavor to add more digital Silicone to my female Robian creations from here on out. "

No no no. What I meant was that Rosie's body in that department seemed like it was MALE that's all. It felt weird design wise.

That all being said. You know I love your stuff.
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:icont-65x:
T-65X Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011
This is so amazing!! The story shows so much emotion!! Can't wait to see more!
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:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Can't wait to make it! :D
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:iconfirestormxx:
Firestormxx Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011
Beautifully written and such an amazing drawing to go with it...
I just...can't describe how well done this is - it's just amazing.
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:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Aww, thanks! :aww:
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:iconfirestormxx:
Firestormxx Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011
No problem, you deserve it!
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011
Words. Can not. In any shape or form. Begin to describe how many questions, comments, reactions, praises, curiosities, cries of joy, cries of amazement, observations, theories, etc, etc, that scream from my mind from this. I think I'll lay down and rest first when I have some peace and quite before writing them all down.

Ones for now:

I like how Tails' recreation of the robotocizer has granted these robians to keep all their senses. He really wanted to make sure they didn't lose their humanity (traditional sense of the word, not species).

So Sally isn't the only one with a mutation. Uncle Chuck's invention is a greater success than he ever realized, or at least it is now with Tails' modification: the robians are true living machines, not a trace of DNA in them, but still fit all the practical definitions of living things.

I WAS SURE I was going to read Rosie's death here being killed by an insane robian just after he finds the child's corpse (who is this tyke anyway? And why was Rosie taking him on a stroll through the all but dead forest?). I'm very happy to be surprised. You have no idea how happy.

It's ironic, I got a hand drawn picture of Rosie as a robain as free gift at a comic shop couple weeks back. I asked for her to be in the tin, and the artist most complied, but she decided Rosie was most recognizable with her hooded cape.
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:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
"I think I'll lay down and rest first when I have some peace and quite before writing them all down."

Don't over-heat your noggin too much..

"I like how Tails' recreation of the robotocizer has granted these robians to keep all their senses."

They'd just be tin cans, in my mind, if they didn't.

"I WAS SURE I was going to read Rosie's death here being killed by an insane robian.."

Please... I wouldn't be that two dimensional.

"who is this tyke anyway? And why was Rosie taking him on a stroll through the all but dead forest?"

The Great Forest may have changed, but it still remains Rosie's home. As for Kaylan, his future role has yet to be decided.
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011
"I WAS SURE I was going to read Rosie's death here being killed by an insane robian.."

Please... I wouldn't be that two dimensional."

Hmmm? I guess you don't approve of 'shoot the shaggy dog' stories then?

[link]

"The Great Forest may have changed, but it still remains Rosie's home." Even if it's nothing more than a ghost at this point eh?

"As for Kaylan, his future role has yet to be decided."

Did he still have family? I guess the real question is why Rosie was with him particular having one on one time rather than being with more of her wards.
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:iconcolonel-eviscerator:
Colonel-Eviscerator Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011
Mmn..nukes.
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(2 Replies)
:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Yep. The type that go 'Boom!'
Reply
:iconcolonel-eviscerator:
Colonel-Eviscerator Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2011
The best kind...

*twitch* And I'm beginning to resent and dislike this alex fellow.
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011
At least for the robians unless they're caught at point blank range it just means a ruined polish job. Then again, you did imply that radiation might not be totally enjoyable for robians.
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011
At least the robians don't mind as badly since they seem to be immune to EMPs.
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:icondemonfiren:
demonfiren Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011
World's End? Beyond that already - greetings from New Vegas, one of the most heavily modded versions out there.

Curse you, inability to be satisfied with the base game.
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:iconalexwarlorn:
alexwarlorn Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2011
Yeah. This world does bear a superficial resemblance to the Fallout verse (in particular with the unexplained animal-like machine predators) but in the fallout verse humans are ever so slowly working their way out of the stone age. The robians are still in a downward spiral.
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:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Never played it. Heard it was riddled with bugs.
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:icondemonfiren:
demonfiren Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011
A good number of them, yes, but most you can either ride out or work around with mods. Doesn't take much of the fum for me, thanks to, most of the time, playing with console on.

The only thing that REALLY bugged me was the in-game face generator and its inability to give previews which actually look like the finished result. Workaround: FaceGen (program) and another prog to port it to NV.
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:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I've still to get around to playing Brotherhood of Steel and the other extension packs for Fallout 3.
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:icondemonfiren:
demonfiren Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011
I've finished all of the add-ons for New Vegas so far, while Dead Money was annoying at best (yet gave me some nice uniques) I did enjoy Honest Hearts very much, and almost even more so Old World Blues.

Never played any DLC for FO3. Might get around to playing classic Fallout/FO2 some day.
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:iconroxanne14:
roxanne14 Featured By Owner Aug 16, 2011  Student Artist
Amazing work! love it!
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:iconnmac1983:
NMac1983 Featured By Owner Aug 17, 2011  Hobbyist Digital Artist
Thanks. :)
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