Side Quest: The Superhuman Gambit

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The first time you enter Canterbury Commons, you'll witness a strange thing -- giant ants attacking robots (#1)! After the battle has played out, a man named Uncle Roe will come up to you and explain the situation. He'll tell you that a woman (the AntAgonizer) started attacking the town with ants, but that her attacks were more amusing than dangerous until a man (the Mechanist) started defending the town with robots. Now the two "superheroes" are causing so much trouble that the caravans have stopped coming to the town. Uncle Roe will then ask you to deal with the problem, and he'll offer you 200 caps for your efforts (which you can bump up to 400 caps with a successful speech check). When you accept his deal you'll trigger the quest.


To start off, you should talk to the residents of Canterbury Commons. Joe Porter (#2) will tell you that the AntAgonizer's real name is Tanya Christoff, and that her family was killed by ants. Dominic (#3) will tell you that the Mechanist's real name is Scott Wollinksi, and that he used to be a friend before he got so involved with his robots. Derek (#4) will tell where to look for the superheroes (Exits A and D).

To deal with the superheroes, you'll first have to fight through their lairs. But when you get to them, you'll be able to talk to them, and that will give you some options:
  • You can kill the superheroes. This is the most straightforward approach. The Mechanist will drop the Mechanist's Costume and the Mechanist's Helmet, and the AntAgonizer will drop the AntAgonizer's Costume and the AntAgonizer's Helmet. Killing one superhero will solve the problem, but you can kill both if you want.

  • You can offer to help one of the superheroes against his or her nemesis. If you do this, then the nemesis (if he or she is still alive) will attack the superhero's inner sanctum (#8 or #18), and you'll have to help out in the battle to keep the superhero alive. Afterwards, if you give the nemesis' costume to the superhero, then the superhero will give you a reward. The AntAgonizer will give you a melee weapon called the Ant's Sting, and the Mechanist will give you an energy weapon called the Protectron's Gaze. With the nemesis defeated, the remaining superhero will agree to stop bothering Canterbury Commons, and that will solve the problem.

  • You can convince the superheroes to give up the fight. This is easier if you learn something about them, but it can also involve using the speech skill or a diplomacy perk (such as Black Widow). If you convince a superhero to stop attacking, then the superhero will give up his or her costume and agree to leave the area.
Regardless of the method you use, when you return to Uncle Roe, he'll give you the caps reward you agreed upon, plus 200 extra caps if you removed both superheroes. You'll also receive 300 experience points. Finally, now that the superhero antics have ended, the caravans will return to Canterbury Commons.

Note: If Uncle Roe is dead, then Derek will give you the reward.

1 - Initial Battle

This is where you'll witness ants fighting robots when you first enter the town.

2 - Dot's Diner

You'll usually meet Joe Porter here. He'll give you some Dirty Water the first time you talk to him. You'll also find a bed that you can sleep on behind the counter.

3 - Dominic and Machete's House

Dominic and Machete will usually patrol the town. They won't say much to you. Inside their house you'll find a pair of ammunition boxes, a pair of gun cabinets, a workbench, a copy of Dean's Electronics (on a desk in the back room), the unique Tire Iron Highwayman's Friend (in the shelves in the back room), and some beds that you can sleep on.

4 - Uncle Roe's House

This is where Uncle Roe and Derek live, but you'll usually find them wandering around the town. Uncle Roe is the leader of the town, and if you ask him about the trade caravans, then you'll be able to organize them and invest in them. See the Caravans section of the walkthrough for more information. Derek is Uncle Roe's nephew. He'll give you some background information for the quest, and you'll also be able to steal a copy of Grognak the Barbarian from him.

Inside Uncle Roe's house you'll find a couple of ammunition boxes in a storage closet, plus a couple of beds that you can sleep on. Also in the house you'll find the storage lockers for the caravans, but you won't be able to get into them without the proper keys (which you won't be able to get without killing the caravan traders).

5 - Courtyard

This is where the caravans will stop when they visit the city. You'll need to complete this quest before they'll return.

6 - Shelves

In the shelves here you'll find two first aid boxes and a rigged Combat Shotgun.

7 - Staircase

You'll need to activate the electrical switch here to open up the hatch covering the staircase. Past the staircase you'll start encountering the AntAgonizer's ant minions.

8 - AntAgonizer's Throne

You'll meet the AntAgonizer here. You'll also find a bottle of Nuka-Cola Quantum here.

9 - Terminal

If you log into the terminal you'll find a note from Frank. Frank will mention that he has some Pulse Grenades in the lockbox at his terminal (in the cubicle to the west), and that the key to the lockbox is behind his terminal. If you don't find the key, then you'll have to pick an "average" lock to get inside the safe.

10 - Locked Door

You won't find a key for this door. To get through it you'll have to pick its "average" lock.

11 - Sector B

You'll find several protectrons in repair pods here. If you open the pods (using the switches next to them), then most of the protectrons will keel over dead, and a couple will walk over to the nonexistent lift and crash to the lower level.

12 - Security Terminal

You can use this terminal to shut down the turrets in Sector B (#11).

13 - Security Terminal (Lower Level)

You can use this terminal to shut down the turrets in Sector A (where you are now). You'll find a first aid box right next to the terminal.

14 - Counter (Lower Level)

On the counter here you'll find a copy of Nikola Tesla and You. Nearby you'll find a couple of ammunition boxes (one on the floor and one on the counter).

15 - Office (Upper Level)

Inside this office you'll find a safe and an emergency terminal. If you pick open the safe, then inside you'll find an encryption key and more. You can use the encryption key with the terminal in the office to blow up all of the robots in the sector. You can also use the terminal to shut down the turrets in the sector.

16 - Desk

On the desk you'll find a copy of Lying, Congressional Style.

17 - Secret Door

To open this "Get Smart" style door, you'll first need to activate the coffee brewer on the table to the left, and then activate the gear on the right.

18 - Mechanist's Workshop

This is where you'll meet the Mechanist. You'll also find a bed and a workbench here.

  1. Front entrance to the Canterbury Tunnels.
  2. Doorway between the Canterbury Tunnels and the AntAgonizer's Lair.
  3. Back entrance into the AntAgonizer's Lair. The sewer grate entrance will start out locked with an "average" lock, but you'll find the key to it on the AntAgonizer (#8) if you kill her.
  4. Entrance to the Robot Repair Center.
  5. Elevator between the Robot Repair Center and the Mechanist's Forge. The elevator will start out locked with a "hard" lock, but you'll be able to use the elevator as an exit from the Mechanist's Forge without having to pick it.
  6. Doorway between the Robot Repair Center and the Mechanist's Forge.