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In light of the high levels of buzz about the upcoming Fallout game, and the Religions topic over in General Discussion, I wanted to bring this up. Honest Hearts, the expansion for Fallout: New Vegas, deals with many issues already explored in the main game, but in its own story explores struggles related to two Mormon characters. It has refreshing depth and moral complexity, even for New Vegas, and an interesting angle on exploring issues of war, cultural influence, proselytizing, and faith. One thing I haven't had the chance to do before is ask Mormons about their take on the story. Is it fair? Joshua Graham would obviously be an unusual character from any culture, but is he a reasonable exploration of, for instance, attitudes toward war? Daniel is practically an embodiment of both honest goodness and pacifism, but what does it say about him that, of all the characters, he's the only one who has no ending path where he's happy?
So I'm hoping this topic can remain as civil as the last LDS connections in Brandon's work thread. I'm not even sure there's much for people to say, but when I was reading this book, I had two Mormon connections scream at me, so I had to get them out: 1. Kaladin's internal debate over whether to kill Elhokar: In the beginning of the Book of Mormon (1st Nephi 4), a righteous man (Nephi) is commanded to slay a man in order to bring back the scriptures for his family. A couple of quotes from this chapter seem to have direct parallels in Kaladin's struggle. First, Nephi comes upon Laban drunk and passed out in the streets, and is commanded by the Holy Spirit to kill him. It's interesting that Kaladin makes exactly the opposite choice. I listened to the audiobook, so I don't have the direct quote, but he says, "If I was going to kill him, I'd do it out in the open in front of everyone, not when he's lying there helpless and drunk." As Nephi is debating the morality of slaying this man with the Spirit, the Spirit says, "Behold the Lord slayeth the wicked to bring forth his righteous purposes. It is better that one man should perish than that a nation should dwindle and perish in unbelief." In addition to the obvious way that Kaladin goes directly counter to this statement, this idea is a major tie in to the Taravangian plot-line as well: who has the right to say a man's death is for the greater good? Anyway, as a Mormon reading this Kaladin scene, it seemed like it was constructed to directly contrast with this scriptural story, and it really enhanced my reading of it. 2. Dalinar's visions being exposed at the party: When Dalinar found the altered vision texts going around at the party, my mind instantly went to a story from early in the life of Joseph Smith. After translating the first 116 pages of the Book of Mormon, these pages were lent to an associate from whom they were then stolen. Smith received a revelation that stated he should not retranslate these pages because his enemies would alter the previous translation, so that the comparison would discredit him. I dunno, maybe this is a tenuous stretch, but it instantly jumped to my (Mormon) mind in reading this scene with Dalinar being discredited with a slightly altered version of the truth. What do you think? Not sure where I'm going with this, but wanted to share in case anyone else is interested.