What’s almost as bad for productivity as a global pandemic?
The answer is Solitaire: now you can play FreeCell in Fallout 4.
After wasting so much of my life on it, I told myself I’d make another Fallout 4 mod when hell froze over, but we all know it kinda did, so, true to my word to myself… with the supermarket shelves looking like a picked-over Super Duper Mart a few weeks ago, and everybody having their own official COVID-19 response, I thought this would be mine.
To play, go to the Diamond City’s mayor’s office and find the “52 Blow-Up” card between the two green telephones. This is a “grenade” that when thrown creates the solitaire board (if you throw it on really rocky ground or in the water, the physics system will screw up the card offsets, so go somewhere flat you can walk in front of the resulting board). Wait a while and a deck will be shuffled onto the ground and then posted into the 8 cascades in the tableau. You have 4 freecells and the four suits settle into the 4 foundation spots after you establish them by placing the first card (Ace) of each suit (there is partial autopop of the suit foundations you need to fill with all 52 cards to win the game — it won’t move cards out of the freecells, for example). You select a card by activating it and select a drop position by also activating that. Crouch-activating a card or trying to make an illegal move clears the selection (exercise some “Patience” waiting for cards to animate, it is the name of the game after all).
When you win, you will be told the deal number and how long you took.
Since this is technically a weapon in my very expansive Weird Weapons series, when you win, the cards will fall back off the board and eventually each self-destruct. You can also be “papercut” to death if you stand in the way of the zooming cards during setup or decommissioning. Leaving the area for a while or completing the game will clear the board.[ There are some improvements I may make in the future with regard to highlighting the card with something more reliable than the blood shader (it’s sometimes quite confusing to see when you are selecting vs. placing), or maybe high scores (low times) on the timer. Because of the 32-bit LCG modulus needed and 16-bit ints in Papyrus, deal numbers do not correspond to MS FreeCell deals unless I get crazy enough to implement software-based arithmetic on custom strings, but ability to enter deal #s may come with an update. ). Also, I didn’t choose to enforce the requirement which is brushed over in many loosely implemented games (that you have enough freecells or empty spaces to move a partial tableau through recursive moves that are usually hidden) — so the game is a bit easier. An update would also put a blank space counting option into the multicard selection so you can enforce this.
If you think this is nuts, I’ve previously implemented Tetris, Witcher-style Dice Poker, maze generation, minelaying L-systems, fish BOIDs, binary search Christmas trees, and even an in-world programming language and terminal into Fallout 4 in the past, along with less computational weapons. Take a look at the EPA Weird Weapons Season Pass or my user page!
Most card art is based on the PD/CC0-licensed SVG deck of D. Fomin on Wikipedia — thanks to them and the various improvers of French & English-style playing cards over time.