All Roads is a Fallout graphic novel written by Chris Avellone. The cover artists are Geof Darrow and Peter Doherty (colors), while the interior artists are Jean Diaz and Wellinton Alves. The art style changes when focus is shifted to another character.
It tells the story of some of the characters and events in the week that leads up to Fallout: New Vegas. It was created in conjunction with Dark Horse Comics and a hardcover copy is included in the collector's edition of the game. On November 16, 2011, Dark Horse released All Roads on Dark Horse Digital and its iTunes app for $2.99.
Avellone's previous experience in comics includes five stories for Dark Horse's Star Wars Tales anthology comic and Clone Wars Adventures digest comic.
Story[edit | edit source]
The story takes place a week before the events of Fallout: New Vegas. Benny is sitting at his suite and observing the New Vegas Strip. He laments that Vegas is his kind of town. Meanwhile, at Red Rock Canyon, a hulking Great Khan named Chance leans against a painted rock, passed out after a night of alcohol and chem abuse. He is approached by Jessup, who asks if Chance is coming back to them. Jessup observes the rock Chance painted and proceeds to point a gun at the Khan, urging him to forget Bitter Springs. Suddenly, Chance leaps up and grabs Jessup's gun hand. Happy that Chance is conscious, Jessup tells him they have a job to do.
As Benny is preparing to leave The Tops casino for business, Swank wonders where he's going. Benny asks if Swank has a problem, though his right-hand man only expresses a dislike of Benny putting out his cigarettes on the floor, as they leave "a trail you can smell from a mile away". Benny tells him that minding his floor isn't Swank's business, and asks how things are downstairs. Swank informs him that they're running low on talent and, although Tommy is working on getting some new acts, he could use some help. Benny is unsympathetic, and asks if the Singer has been taken care off. Pulling a vial laced with psycho from his pocket, Swank says that word on the Strip is that the Singer died of an overdose, though the rest of the Chairmen aren't happy with his passing, as they liked the man. Swank goes on to say that if Benny wanted the Singer dead, Swank could have simply killed him directly, as it would have been the way they handled things back when they were riding the Mojave. Benny angrily tells Swank that if he wants to go back to the old days, he is free to leave. Swank apologetically tells Benny that he only meant that a direct kill would have been honest, since the Singer didn't know there was psycho in the vial. Benny smiles and tells him the only thing in the vial is Vegas.
Back at Red Rock Canyon, McMurphy and some other Khans are gathered around a crudely drawn map in the dirt, planning their route. The other Great Khans wonder who they're doing the job for, if it's raider work, and if they're going to kill NCR soldiers. McMurphy informs them that they won't be raiding or killing any NCR troopers. Just then, they're joined by Jessup and Chance. Chance pulls out a knife and proceeds to draw a much more detailed map in place of the old. McMurphy points out that Chance forgot something, to which the towering Khan plunges his knife deep in the dirt and twists, creating a gaping hole, under which he writes "Vegas". A voice behind them claims that this wasn't his experience of Vegas. With Benny's arrival, the Khans journey south of Red Rock Canyon.
As night falls, the group makes camp. As the Khans observe Benny, McMurphy asks him why they're hunting for some courier, but Benny simply tells him that this is the job. Jessup wonders if this courier has wronged Benny somehow, but Benny informs him that he doesn't want the courier as much as what they're carrying. Jessup notes that the chip sounds valuable, but Benny claims that it's only valuable to him. Jessup goes on to ask if the courier will be accompanied by any bodyguards, but Benny says that they'll be alone, as it's a covert mission. Jessup wonders if the courier will simply give them the package, but Benny says that it'd be better if they killed the courier, so as not to leave any loose ends. Jessup angrily tells Benny that he knows who he is and that he could simply employ other Chairmen to do his dirty work. Jessup is, therefore, suspicious that Benny would seek out the Khans instead, and is adamant that their tribe doesn't "kill for New Vegas caps". Benny assures him that he'll be the one to pull the trigger, putting an end to the argument. As Benny is standing in front of the bonfire, Chance stares at him, reminded once more of the Bitter Springs Massacre. Noticing that Chance is suffering from withdrawal, Benny asks if Chance is clean, clearly worried. Jessup and McMurphy assure him that Chance is good in a fight and that the Khans "carry their own".
The next day, as they're traveling south, Jessup discreetly asks McMurphy if he'd noticed Benny's lighter, clearly planning to steal it. McMurphy warns him off such on action, as the wrath of New Vegas is the last things the Great Khans need, reminding him that the city already absorbed three tribes and turned them into families. Jessup is surprised to learn that Benny is a tribal, but McMurphy points out that Benny is the one setting the pace. Benny notices Chance shadowing him and briefly tries to make conversation with the Khan, even though Jessup told him Chance hasn't spoken since Bitter Springs. Their one-sided conversation is cut short when they stumble on a charred corpse, not far from a small, burning tribal village. Benny quickly determines that the man died when someone set him on fire and watched, while McMurphy notices a painted skull on the ground and concludes that the village is being ravaged by Fiends.
As the suns sets, the group plans on what to do next. They all agree it'd be best to avoid the Fiends, even though the Khans normally trade with them, since the Fiends are clearly high on chems. McMurphy suggests circling back a few miles, but is denied by Benny, who doesn't want to miss the Courier. Jessup bitterly laments that the NCR is supposed to protect the Mojave from attacks such as this, but McMurphy reminds him of Bitter Springs and is certain that NCR help is the last thing the Khans need. It is then that Jessup notices that Chance is missing.
As he observes the pillaging, Chance is driven berserk by the sight of fire, which reminds him of Bitter Springs. He heads into battle armed only with his knife, and begins slaughtering the Fiends. McMurphy and Jessup prepare to help Chance, but Benny stops them. Since the Fiends hadn't noticed them yet, Benny wants to leave Chance behind and make a clean getaway. Jessup protests, but McMurphy seems to initially side with Benny. Jessup decides to help Chance anyway, prompting McMurphy, the rest of the Great Khans, and even Benny to follow him. Just as Chance is about to be overwhelmed, the rest of the Khans and Benny join in. Despite killing a large number of Fiends, the group is quickly surrounded and is almost overwhelmed. Chance himself is stabbed and pinned to the ground, but manages to fight off his attacker. Just then, a flamer-wielding Fiend shows up and blasts Chance and the group of Fiends he was fighting, engulfing them in flames. Despite his injuries, Chance leaps towards his assailant and is able to bend the flamer nozzle towards the Fiend, resulting the raider burning the flesh off his own skull. They win the battle, but Chance is badly burned and near death.
McMurphy and Jessup consider giving Chance some of the drugs they looted from the Fiends to make him live longer, but Benny is opposed to this idea, as Chance lost his cool even when he was sober, so there is no telling how he'll behave on chems. Benny, instead, tells the Khans to put Chance down, but reconsiders when they give him a threatening look. Barely conscious, Chance remembers the Bitter Springs Massacre, and how he was unable to prevent it. Benny approaches the injured Khan and offers him a cigarette, though Chance doesn't respond. Benny goes on to tell Chance a story about how the Chairmen used to be a tribe not dissimilar to the Khans, and how there was a Singer that entertained them around a campfire. When the Chairmen became one of the Families, the Singer continued to sing much like he did back when they were nomads. The Singer, however, longed for the old days. He sang songs about the time his tribe roamed the Mojave, and talked about how the Chairmen should return to that time. The problem was, as Benny puts it, the Chairmen began to feel nostalgic about their time as nomads because of the Singer's songs. Benny says that the Singer was unable to move on, and so frequently got high, much like Chance is unable to move on from Bitter Springs. Benny then talks about how he's not like the Singer, and that he plans on ruling Vegas and never walking the Mojave again, instead making the Mojave walk to him. He then pulls the psycho vial he got from Swank from his pocket and places it next to Chance. Benny hopes that Chance can pull through until the job is done, but offers him the vial so he can kill himself if he can't let go. Chance decides to take it, and is found dead in the morning.
McMurphy and Jessup are saddened by the passing of their friend. They decide to bury Chance. Benny protests, but decides to allow it when the Khans glare at him. Benny tells them to catch up when they're done. They arrive to the Goodsprings Cemetery, and prepare to ambush the Courier.
Characters[edit | edit source]
Mentioned-only[edit | edit source]
Creatures[edit | edit source]
Mentioned-only[edit | edit source]
In-game[edit | edit source]
- The Courier is the player character in Fallout: New Vegas.
- Benny is the antagonist for the beginning of the game and an important character in the main quest.
- Jessup and McMurphy can be found in Boulder City (as part of the main quest) but McMurphy is dead.
- Swank, Benny's second-in-command, is at The Tops casino, as well as mentioned-only Tommy Torini.
- Chance's Map, which McMurphy began carving into the ground with his finger can be found west of New Vegas, close to Red Rock Canyon.
- Chance's knife, which he used to finish the map McMurphy started, is located inside Chance's grave along with the Great Khan simple armor he wore at the time of his death.
- Tribal Village, where the battle against Fiends took place, can be found north of Goodsprings, along with bodies of murdered tribals, Great Khans, and Fiends. Now inhabited by the cazadores mentioned in the graphic novel.
- Engraved cigarette lighter, which Benny used to light his distinctive cigarettes and which the Khans discussed stealing is given to the player by Jessup in Boulder City.
- Courier's grave, in which the Courier is dumped, was dug by the Khans, although Benny had to pull the trigger (the Khans refused to do his dirty work).
Notes[edit | edit source]
- Chris Avellone has stated that "We decided not to use the Courier in the book. We want the players to determine how their character looks, acts, and reacts so in the book we focused on the player's adversaries and the folks who want you dead."
- Every NCR trooper in the graphic novel that attacked the Great Khans during the Bitter Springs Massacre (in Chance's flashback) are seen riding horses, animals that are never seen in the game and allegedly extinct in North America.
- When asked about the horses seen in All Roads, Chris Avellone said, "To me, that picture in the comic was an error (no one noticed it until too late)" and that "it was never my intention that there were any horses." He went on to say that "there were parts of the New Vegas design where we specifically removed the mention of horses from certain narrative points (one of Raul's stories originally referenced horses, for example, and we cut them because we didn't want to imply horses still existed)."
- While Geof Darrow had no previous involvement with the Fallout series, his art helped inspire the look of pre-War cities and the original 10mm pistol is modeled on artwork Darrow created for Frank Miller's comic Hard Boiled.
- Swank is dressed in a grimy pre-War businesswear in the graphic novel, while in the game, the texture of the suit is the same as the dirty pre-War businesswear texture.
- At the tribal village in the game, there are two Great Khan corpses, despite the fact that none of the five Khans that joined the battle in the graphic novel were killed.
- The account of the Bitter Springs Massacre in the graphic novel and that in the game contradict each other, but this could be intentional because of the point-of-view in which it is told.
- Chance's map in-game and in the graphic novel appear differently and are located in different locations.
Behind the scenes[edit | edit source]
The title of the graphic novel can be read several ways, either as the common saying "All roads lead to home": possibly referring to the Courier's past, or "All roads lead to Rome" foreshadowing the crossing of the Colorado River for both Benny and the Courier later in the story of Fallout: New Vegas. Alternatively, Joshua Graham also gives another interpretation saying "All roads wind down to the same spot, the grave" when discussing the Divide in Honest Hearts.