They asked me how well I understood theoretical physics. I said I had a theoretical degree in physics. They said 'welcome aboard!'Fantastic

That Lucky Old Sun is a side quest in Fallout: New Vegas. It is also an achievement on the Xbox 360 and PC and a bronze trophy on the PlayStation 3.

Quick walkthrough

Side Quest: That Lucky Old Sun
Talk to Fantastic and Ignacio Rivas and get their passwords.
Use the two reflector control terminals outside to connect to the HELIOS One mainframe..
Get to the mainframe and repair its electronics.
Choose where to distribute power and whether to arm the ARCHIMEDES defense system and wipe out the NCR or not.
OPTIONAL: Arm ARCHIMEDES security system to wipe out all nearby NCR soldiers
Use the HELIOS One mainframe to send power to a destination of your choosing.
McCarran and the Strip
Fremont and Westside
Full region
Full region (emergency level)
Reward: NCR fame gained
Reward: Followers fame gained
OPTIONAL: Arm ARCHIMEDES security system to wipe out all nearby NCR soldiers.
Get outside and initiate reflector re-targeting from the console.
Talk to Fantastic.
Talk to Ignacio.
Reward: 550, 480 or 350 XP
Reward: 550, 480 or 350 XP, 3 Stimpaks and 2 doctor's bags.

Detailed walkthrough

Initiating the quest

At the entrance on the south side of HELIOS One there is an NCR officer named Lt. Haggerty, who is the head of the NCR detachment guarding the plant. The Courier can ask her for access to the plant. She is inclined to turn them away, however one can get her to change her mind with one of the following options:

  • Speech 30 - Lie and say the player character's brother works there.
  • Science 30 - Point out that the tower isn't working right and offer to help.
  • If the one's NCR reputation is more positive than negative, or with Speech 35 or more, the Courier can claim to be with the NCR and be let in.
  • Have an NCR disguise.
  • The Courier could shoot their way in past the NCR guards (more Karma is lost this way)

Once the player character has convinced her, she tells them to talk to the "idiot wearing sunglasses."

Optionally, one can sneak in through a back door with a Very Easy lock (player loses Karma). From there the player character should find the idiot with the sunglasses, Fantastic and talk to him to begin the quest.

(Optional) Get the Big Book of Science as a quest reward from Ignacio

To get the Big Book of Science or other quest rewards from Ignacio Rivas, you must speak to him and make sure not to select "I'm with the NCR" when asked which group you fight for or belong to, nor select "War" when asked if you're a maker of war or peace. Any other option available will make him trust you. Then, if he trusts you, talking to him further and telling him that "the NCR asked [the Courier] to increase the power plant's output" will lead to Ignacio asking the Courier to divert the power to the full region instead of only to the NCR. (Ignacio will then also provide the eastern reflector control terminal password.) If you did these steps, then at the end of the quest, when you divert the power, you will get the "Go talk to Ignacio" objective and get one of his possible rewards depending on where you diverted the power to; the Big Book of Science being the reward for choosing to divert the power to the "full region," as he asked.

Failing to gain Ignacio's trust will immediately prevent you from receiving any rewards from him, no matter what other speech options you select or actions you do later in that quest. Likewise, even if you gained his trust, you have to mention that "the NCR asked [the Courier] to increase the power plant's output" before diverting the power in order for the "Go talk to Ignacio" objective to appear and be able to receive any rewards from him.


In the back of the plant is a science lab of sorts, where Fantastic and Ignacio Rivas are trying to get the output of the plant up. Fantastic is a transparent fraud who clearly has no idea what he's doing. Rivas is an actual scientist, who is really working for the Followers of the Apocalypse, a group which worries that the plant is not merely a power plant, but a pre-War super weapon.

Fantastic and Rivas explain that to get the plant running, the mirror control systems need to be connected to the mainframe and then the mirrors retargeted from the mainframe terminal in the plant itself. The two mirror control terminals require a password. Each man holds a password for one of the two mirror control terminals. Fantastic will give his up easily enough. Note that Fantastic's password is not in his inventory; it must either be obtained via dialogue or found in the same room as Rivas' password in a footlocker on the second floor.

Rivas will only give the player character his password if they gain his trust by professing to be peaceful (or at least not trying to get involved, both available if the Courier states they only work for themselves), states that they want what he wants (must know Rivas is with the Followers, requiring a Speech check or Confirmed Bachelor perk), or if the player character claims to be with the Brotherhood of Steel. This may only be done on the first conversation. One can also pickpocket the password from him, or a duplicate password can be found in a second floor office, lying on a desk.

The outside terminals

Both terminals are inside small shacks on the outer perimeter of the mirror field. The west mirror control terminal requires the password obtained from Fantastic. The east one can be unlocked with the password obtained from Ignacio Rivas or from the office of the main building on the second floor by the room with the giant hole in the floor (take an immediate right after entering through the main door), or it can be hacked with 75 Science.

The western shack has multiple traps, including three frag mines, a rigged shotgun with a tripwire and two bear traps. Once the traps have been disarmed or avoided, the terminal just needs to be activated and "Reset Mainframe Connection" selected.

This second terminal is protected by several NCR guard dogs, but they aren't much of a problem. Killing them has no impact on NCR reputation and won't turn anyone nearby hostile. Activate it just like the first, by selecting "Reset Mainframe Connection."

Get to the mainframe

The Courier then enters the tower via a door near the base. Just past the door and a short hallway is an area with three hostile turrets and hostile robots. In a room just across from the entrance is an easy locked terminal that controls the turrets. This same room also has four armed land mines.

One must then wind through the rest of the building, destroying many robots along the way, until arriving at an elevator in the basement that takes the player character to the observation level. Along the way is a Poseidon Energy employee ID card. There are two lying on the floor in a room adjacent to the room with the elevator. There is a door in the elevator room with an Average lock that leads to the room with the IDs, or one can go back through a room filled with protectrons and down a hall to reach the back door of the room. Combat with the aforementioned protectrons can be avoided as they are contained in shielded charging stations until activated by a laser trip-wire at the base of the door to the room containing them. The tripwire requires a Repair skill of 85 or Science skill of 65 to disarm.

Repair the mainframe

The observation level contains not much more than the mainframe itself and stairs to reach the exit door to the outer viewing deck. The mainframe is not working, as it doesn't have enough power because the attached generator is malfunctioning. The player character can either repair the generator (which is connected to the mainframe by a steaming hose) with a piece of scrap metal and 35 Repair, or can go up the stairs to find a maintenance bot called PYTHON, which can be activated with a Poseidon Energy employee ID card or with 45 Science skill. Once activated, the robot will repair the mainframe.

Select an output configuration

The terminal on the mainframe contains some notes the player character has probably already seen on previous terminals in the building and an option Configure Power Grid. Selecting it reveals 5 options:

  1. McCarran and Las Vegas Strip: By directing the extra power toward Camp McCarran and the Strip, the power will be transferred to the NCR home states along with the energy generated at Hoover Dam. NCR fame will be gained for making this decision.
  2. Fremont and Westside: This solution will direct all the power toward the two poorest areas in the New Vegas area and the Followers of the Apocalypse camps located there. This pleases the Followers of the Apocalypse, though it won't benefit as many people as it potentially could.
  3. Full region: The energy will be distributed to the entire regional grid equally, but as a result everyone will only get a small amount of energy and the plant will suffer frequent brownouts. The Courier will gain a large amount of reputation with the Followers of the Apocalypse and Ignacio Rivas will give them a Big Book of Science, 3 stimpaks and 2 doctor's bags as a reward for making this decision.
  4. ARCHIMEDES II: This solution diverts power to the next-generation space laser system mentioned in the terminal notes and will give the player character the option of calling down space-laser strikes once every twenty four hours (Patch Update), provided the player character has also obtained Euclid's C-Finder. The Followers are satisfied with this option, as Ignacio Rivas does not know the location to which the power has been diverted. However, Ignacio will not give the Courier a Big Book of Science as part of their reward.
  5. Full region (emergency output level): This solution overloads the plant, which prevents Archimedes I from being activated (see further notes). This gains no reputation with any faction, as no one will be getting any power, but Ignacio Rivas will still give the player character a small reward out of sympathy.

Once one of the five options has been selected, the terminal returns to the main menu. A new option comes up at this point, Arm ARCHIMEDES Plant Defense System. If it is activated, then the Archimedes I plant defense system will be triggered as soon as one activates the reflector control panel on the outside of the tower. Doing so will call down a laser strike on the area around the plant (unless power option 5 was selected), killing all the NCR personnel in the area. This result will earn the Courier massive infamy gain with the NCR and no rewards from either Fantastic or Ignacio Rivas, even if the power is diverted to their preferred location.

Until the choices are locked in by activating the reflector control panel, the status of the Archimedes I defense system can be changed and the options for where the power goes can be changed.

Time to flip the switch

Once the Courier has chosen the final power grid disposition and whether to activate Archimedes I, the final step is to go up the stairs and through the door to the outside of the tower. The reflector control panel is down a spiral ramp to the left. It can only be activated between 9 am and 3 pm. Once the control panel is activated, one of three things will happen:

  • If one has chosen to activate the Archimedes I defense system and has chosen option 5 (overload) for the power grid, horns will blare and a warning will play about the imminent weapon test, but shortly thereafter, everything grinds to a halt. If the player character is trusted by Ignacio Rivas, they can now go talk to him to receive their reward. Otherwise the quest ends.
  • If one has chosen to activate the Archimedes I defense system and has chosen any of options 1–4 for the power grid, the horns blare and warnings sound, this time everything works perfectly. All of the NCR troops in the area of the plant (inside and out) are obliterated in a massive display of pyrotechnics. The quest ends and the Courier gains a significant amount of NCR infamy and turn the Brotherhood of Steel hostile to the player character. Fantastic and Ignacio Rivas will not have been killed, but will refuse to talk to the player character. If one leaves the power plant and returns after two days, the plant will be occupied by Caesar's Legion, who have stepped in to fill the void.
  • If one has not chosen to activate Archimedes I, but has chosen any power grid option, the plant powers up.
    • If one chose anything other than option 1 and is not trusted by Ignacio Rivas, the quest will end with no reward.
    • If option 1 is selected (McCarran and the Strip), one can talk to Fantastic, who will be thrilled, claim all the credit, and give the player character nothing. The player character will gain a lot of NCR reputation.
    • If option 2 is selected (Freeside and Westside) and one is trusted by Ignacio Rivas, one can talk to him to get 3 stimpaks, 2 doctor's bags, and a moderate amount of Followers of the Apocalypse reputation.
    • If option 3 is chosen (Full Region) and one is trusted by Ignacio Rivas, they can talk to him to get a Big Book of Science, 3 stimpaks, 2 doctor's bags, and a large amount of Followers of the Apocalypse reputation.
    • If option 4 is selected (Archimedes II) and one is trusted by Ignacio Rivas, they can talk to him to get two stimpaks, a doctor's bag, and a small amount of Followers of the Apocalypse reputation.
    • If option 5 is selected (Full Region, Emergency Output Level) and is trusted by Ignacio Rivas, they can talk to him to get 3 stimpaks and 2 doctor's bags; however, there is no reputation gain.
  • No matter how the quest ends, either 550, 480, or 350 XP is earned.

Quest stages

5 Talk to the idiot wearing sunglasses in the back of the HELIOS One plant building.
20 Connect to the HELIOS One mainframe from the western reflector control terminal.
30 Connect to the HELIOS One mainframe from the eastern reflector control terminal.
50 Restore power to the HELIOS One mainframe via an auxiliary generator.
60 Use the HELIOS One mainframe to send power to a destination of your choosing.
65 OPTIONAL: Arm ARCHIMEDES security system to wipe out all nearby NCR soldiers.
70Quest finishedInitiate reflector retargeting from the console on the tower observation deck.
80Quest finishedTalk to Fantastic.
90Quest finishedTalk to Ignacio.


  • In order to avoid glitches and bugs, it is a very good idea to wait by the reflector control panel at the top of the tower until the entire powering up sequence is done, whether the player character has elected to activate Archimedes I or not. The sequence ends with a bright white light filling the screen (if Archimedes I was not activated) or a large laser beam coming down from the sky, causing a massive explosion (if Archimedes I was activated).
  • If Arcade Gannon is with the player character, he will encourage them to distribute the power over the Freeside and Westside districts of New Vegas, saying the NCR does not need it. With Intelligence 7 the player character can convince Arcade that the NCR needs HELIOS One as a backup. He may not say anything if the quest was started before receiving him as a companion. Whatever distribution choice the player character makes, he will comment on it. Arming Archimedes I will cause him to get angry and leave permanently or become hostile, depending on the Courier's response to his confrontation.
  • Activating the Archimedes I defense system while having Boone as a companion might cause him to confront the player character and possibly leave or become hostile, depending on the player character's current NCR reputation. (This is not special to HELIOS One; he will confront the player character if the player character's NCR fame/infamy ratio goes below neutral, or if he's warned the player character once about hurting the NCR and their reputation gets worse.)
  • If the player character did not arm Archimedes I during this quest, they can come back later and arm it, then walk outside and the attack sequence will play (if they didn't choose option 5 for the power up during the quest), producing the same infamy gain as if they did it during the quest. However, the NCR troops inside the building will not disappear, nor Haggerty and her troops at the front entrance and all NCR troops in the area will turn hostile.
  • If the player character returns after the Legion have taken over (after activating Archimedes I), Ignacio Rivas will be dead and Fantastic will be wearing a Legion uniform. He has a whole new set of dialogue about his belief that Caesar's Legion is the next big thing.
  • Fantastic can be killed without any loss of NCR Reputation.
  • If the Courier has joined the Legion and is vilified by the NCR, this quest can still be completed. Just kill any soldiers encountered and no quest-essential NPCs will be hostile.
  • Ignacio heavily mentions code words that will help complete ED-E My Love.
  • If one uses the resetquest console command to replay the quest, to be able to activate the reflector control panel and finish the quest, it will be necessary to target the control panel in the console (open console and click on the control panel) and type set bdoneonce to 0.

Behind the scenes

  • The title of this quest is a reference to a 1949 song, "That Lucky Old Sun," by Beasley Smith and Haven Gillespie.
  • The passwords to the Eastern and Western reflector control terminals can be converted from hexadecimal into ASCII, producing the phrases "My voice is my passport" and "Too many secrets." The phrases are originally from the movie Sneakers, starring Robert Redford. They were used as computer passwords in that movie.
  • Archimedes is the name of an ancient philosopher and scientist from Syracuse, Sicily. During the time of the Roman invasion, he created many military machines for the city to defend against Rome; one of them was said to be a collection of mirrors that redirected sunlight onto ships, setting them aflame.
  • A number of remaining resources indicate that at one point this quest included a method for completing it on behalf of the Brotherhood of Steel, allowing them to take over the facility. Among other resources, the quest includes greeting dialogue for Brotherhood guards, indicating their satisfaction at gaining control of HELIOS One. Other unused resources include the guards themselves (FormID 00143924) as well as the corresponding dialogue faction for these guards.


  • Has platform::PCPC Has platform::Playstation 3Playstation 3 Has platform::Xbox 360Xbox 360 If Fantastic is killed before the power is restored, Ignacio Rivas may not provide the quest-ending dialogue option after powering up the plant and the quest cannot be completed. The only way to complete it is to kill Ignacio. [已验证]
  • Has platform::PCPC If the player character goes to Hoover Dam to talk to the Commander before finishing this quest, Fantastic will be there instead of at HELIOS One, making it impossible to finish That Lucky Old Sun. To fix this the player character must kill Fantastic at Hoover Dam. [已验证]
  • Has platform::PCPC If the player character chooses to arm Archimedes I, the orbital strike may not activate and all NCR soldiers within the base will become hostile. Arcade Gannon will still leave the player character.[已验证]
  • Has platform::PCPC Has platform::Playstation 3Playstation 3 Has platform::Xbox 360Xbox 360 If the player character leaves the room after activating PYTHON, but before he fixes to the generator, he will be deactivated when walking back inside again and will not perform the fixes. [已验证]
  • Has platform::Playstation 3Playstation 3 If the Courier obtains the password for the second terminal without talking to Rivas and activate Archimedes I, Rivas will refuse to talk to them afterward and the quest cannot be completed. Killing Rivas completes the quest but no XP or Loot will be given to the Courier. [已验证]
  • Has platform::PCPC Has platform::Playstation 3Playstation 3 The guard dogs guarding the eastern mainframe may not appear. [已验证]
  • Has platform::PCPC If the player character speaks to Ignacio Rivas before speaking to Fantastic to learn about realigning the mirrors, Ignacio may not bring up the dialogue to suggest the player character reroute the power to the entire region. This will result on him not acknowledging the player character activating the plant, preventing the player character from receiving Followers fame and ending the quest. [已验证]
  • Has platform::PCPC Has platform::Playstation 3Playstation 3 Has platform::Xbox 360Xbox 360 Ignacio Rivas will not give the Courier a Big Book of Science for completing That Lucky Old Sun by evenly distributing the power. [已验证]
Main quests
Act 1Ain't That a Kick in the Head · Back in the Saddle · By a Campfire on the Trail · They Went That-a-Way · Ring-a-Ding-Ding!
Act 2Wild Card (Wild Card: Ace in the Hole, Change in Management, You and What Army?, Side Bets, Finishing Touches) · The House Always Wins (I, II, III, IV, V, VI, VII, VIII) · Render Unto Caesar · Et Tumor, Brute? · Things That Go Boom · Kings' Gambit · For the Republic, Part 2 · You'll Know It When It Happens/Arizona Killer
Act 3No Gods, No Masters · All or Nothing · Veni, Vidi, Vici · Eureka!
Side quests
New California RepublicAnywhere I Wander · Back in Your Own Backyard · Bitter Springs Infirmary Blues · Boulder City Showdown · Can You Find it in Your Heart? · Climb Ev'ry Mountain · Don't Tread on the Bear! · Emergency Radio · Eye for an Eye · Flags of Our Foul-Ups · Hard Luck Blues · I Don't Hurt Anymore · I Put a Spell on You · Keep Your Eyes on the Prize · Medical Mystery · No, Not Much · Pressing Matters · Restoring Hope · Return to Sender · That Lucky Old Sun · The White Wash · There Stands the Grass · Three-Card Bounty · We Will All Go Together · You Can Depend on Me
Caesar's LegionBeware the Wrath of Caesar! · Caesar's Favor · Caesar's Foe · Caesar's Hire · Cold, Cold Heart · I Hear You Knocking · The Finger of Suspicion · We Are Legion
The StripBeyond the Beef · Bye Bye Love · Classic Inspiration · How Little We Know · Pheeble Will · Talent Pool · The House Has Gone Bust! · The Moon Comes Over the Tower
Freeside & Outer VegasBirds of a Feather · Bleed Me Dry · Debt Collector · G.I. Blues · High Times · Someone to Watch Over Me · The Coyotes · Wang Dang Atomic Tango
BoomersAnt Misbehavin' · Sunshine Boogie · Volare! · Young Hearts
Great KhansAba Daba Honeymoon · Cry Me a River · Don't Make a Beggar of Me · Oh My Papa
Powder GangBooted · I Fought the Law · Run Goodsprings Run · Why Can't We Be Friends?
Brotherhood of SteelEyesight to the Blind · Still in the Dark · Tend to Your Business
OtherCome Fly With Me · Crazy, Crazy, Crazy · Ghost Town Gunfight · Guess Who I Saw Today · Left My Heart · My Kind of Town · The Legend of the Star and A Valuable Lesson · Unfriendly Persuasion · Wheel of Fortune
Companion questsED-E My Love · For Auld Lang Syne · Heartache by the Number · I Could Make You Care · I Forgot to Remember to Forget · Nothin' But a Hound Dog · One for My Baby
Unmarked questsA Bit of Slap and Tickle · A Final Plan for Esteban · Access Powers · All Fired Up! · An Ear to the Ground · Andy and Charlie · Arachnophobia · Arizona Scavenger · Barton the Fink · Bear Necessities · Big Winner (Atomic Wrangler, The Gomorrah, The Tops, Ultra-Luxe, Vikki & Vance) · Bounty Killer (I, II) · Brotherhood Bond (I, II) · Caching in at the Cove · Cajoling a Cudgel · Claws Mended · Claws Out · Dealing with Contreras · Defacing the Humble Stone · Democracy Inaction · Don't Poke at the Bear! · Eddie's Emissary · Exhumin' Nature · Fight Night · Flogging a Dead Corpse · Friend of the Followers · Gland for Some Home Cooking · Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger · Hat's Entertainment · Help for Halford · Hidden Valley computer virus · Highway to the Danger Zone (I, II) · Honorary Rocketeer · I Love Bananas · Iron and Stealing · Keith's Caravan Charade · Laurifer Gladiator · Lenk's Bad Debts · Lily and Leo · Long-Term Care · Malleable Mini Boomer Minds · Maud's Muggers · Meeting an Equal · Missing a Few Missiles · Most Wanted · Not Worth a Hill of Corn and Beans · Old School Ghoul · A Pair of Dead Desperados (I, II) · Papers, Please · Pistol Packing · Playing on the Old Joana · Poor Meat Never Makes Good Soup · Powder to the People · Power to the People · Razzle Dazzle! · Reach for the Sky, Mister! · Rest and Resupply · Ringo's Caravan Rules · Rotface's Loose Lips · Saving (or Savaging) Sergeant Teddy · The Screams of Brahmin · Silus Treatment · Short-Term Treatment · Smooth-Talking Criminal · The Star Showdown · Strategic Nuclear Moose · Straus Calls · Strip Search · Suits You, Sarah · Tags of Our Fallen · A Team of Moronic Mercenaries · Thought for the Day · Tourist Traipse · Trudy's Radio Repair · A Trusted Aide · Useless Baubles or Fancy Trinkets? · We Must Stop Beating Like This · We Must Stop Meeting Like This · Wind-Brahmin Wrangler · You Gotta Break Out a Few Eggs · You Make Me Feel Like a Woman
Add-on quests
Dead MoneySierra Madre Grand Opening! · Find Collars (8: "Dog", 12: Christine, 14: Dean Domino) · Fires in the Sky · Strike Up the Band · Mixed Signals · Trigger the Gala Event · Put the Beast Down · Last Luxuries · Curtain Call at the Tampico · Heist of the Centuries · Big Winner, Sierra Madre
Honest HeartsA Family Affair · Arrival at Zion · Bighorners of the Eastern Virgin · Chaos in Zion · Civilized Man's Burden · Crush the White Legs · Deliverer of Sorrows  · Departing Paradise · Flight from Zion · Gathering Storms · Gone Fishin' · Happy Trails Expedition · Prisoners of War · Retake the Bridge · River Monsters · Rite of Passage · Roadside Attraction · Sanctity of the Dead · The Advance Scouts  · The Treacherous Road · The Grand Staircase · Tourist Trap
Old World BluesAll My Friends Have Off Switches · A Brain's Best Friend · Coming Out of Her Shell · Field Research · He Came... And Went · Influencing People · Midnight Science Fiction Feature! · Old World Blues · On the Same Wavelength · Picking Your Brains · Project X-13 · Sonic Emitter Upgrade · Welcome to the Big Empty · What's in a Name? · When Visitors Attack! · X-2: Strange Transmissions! · X-8 Data Retrieval Test · X-8: High School Horror! · X-13: Attack of the Infiltrator!
Lonesome RoadThe Reunion · The Silo · The Job · The Launch · The Tunnelers · The Divide · The Courier · The End · The Apocalypse