Players are diving into Fallout 4's files, and what they're finding is actually pretty damn cool. First, there was that cool harpoon weapon that never made it into the game. Now someone has found files that shed light on a different ending for Fallout 4.
Obviously, major spoilers for the end of Fallout 4 follow.
Depending on what faction you side with, your experience with Fallout 4 will be different. In the Brotherhood of Steel questline, you find out that Paladin Danse, the most honest and respectable person you'll ever find in the wasteland, is actually a synth. As you probably already know, the Brotherhood of Steel hates synths. Unsurprisingly, The Brotherhood's leader, Maxson, orders you to kill Danse. You are then given a choice: execute Danse, or exile him. If you spare Danse's life, the Brotherhood — an organisation Danse poured his heart and soul into — treats Danse as if he were dead anyway.
After spending an entire game with Danse, it's probably obvious why this ending kind of sucks for the player. He doesn't deserve what happens to him! But, it appears that things didn't always end this way in Fallout 4. Audio files discovered by Tumblr user tentacle-explosion show that, at one point during Fallout 4's development, Bethesda was toying with a different ending for both the Brotherhood of Steel and Paladin Danse. Over at Tumblr, you can listen to the relevant audio files — you'll note that they sound exactly like Paladin Danse...except it's all dialogue that you never encounter in the actual game.
The audio files suggest that a scrapped ending for the Brotherhood of Steel would have let you fight back against Maxson in some way. In this version of Fallout 4, Paladin Danse suggests that you confront Elder Maxson. Ultimately, the player would be able to kill Maxson, and then take his place as the leader of the Brotherhood. Additionally, in this scrapped ending, Paladin Danse wouldn't have to leave the Brotherhood. Instead, he seems to convince the group that he'd be willing to kill his own kind if it meant furthering the goals of the Brotherhood. Pretty great, huh?
By the time you read this, there's a chance the audio will be taken down from Tumblr, so here's a transcript, helpfully provided by tentacle-explosion.
"If you're referring to Maxson, you're right. He's still going to be a problem. But I might have a way out."
"I hope that's enough to convince you to take your place as Elder of the Brotherhood."
"The Litany is clear. We have a new Elder."
"I want to make one thing clear to everyone. This body might be synth, but my heart and mind belong to the Brotherhood. The Institute is still a tremendous threat to the Commonwealth. They possess technologies that need to be confiscated or destroyed. And even if that means I have to pull the trigger on my own kind, I'm willing to make that sacrifice."
"Just prepare yourself. I don't know what Maxson* will have in store when we arrive."
"When Haylen warned me about Quinlan's discovery, she begged me to confront Maxson. She told me that there were Brotherhood soldiers that still believed in me, that would stand behind me if I challenged his authority. At the time, I told her that it wouldn't be right to cause a rift in our ranks. We're on the brink of war with the Institute, and weakening our unity felt like I'd be… Backstabbing my own troops. But knowing that you're still with me… Maybe that will be enough to convince Maxson that he's making a mistake. I'll come back to the Prydwen with you, and we'll confront Maxson together."
"As a Brotherhood of Steel Paladin, I'm issuing a formal challenge against your authority as Elder. We'll settle this matter as it was written in the Litany: In combat. Then you leave me no choice." (This one seems like it was meant to be split and mixed with Maxson's responses.)
"Right now, I'm not sure we can even get near Maxson before the Brotherhood would cut us down. But we have to try. I've known Maxson for a long time, and under all that protocol is a decent man."
"Be ready for anything. Maxson's going to be furious when he sees me."
Do note that tentacle-explosion says that they have not heard the entirety of Paladin Danse's audio files, so there might be even more hiding within about this. Of course, there's also always the possibility that Bethesda might use some of this for upcoming DLC...though it seems related enough to already present storylines to suggest otherwise.
I don't know about you, but, this scrapped ending sounds way better to me. Of course, it also would have been the easier ending to deal with — it's a route where the player gets to use force to get their way. What Bethesda actually went with is much a harsher outcome, and I can definitely see an argument for why that has its own merits. Still, though, I would have loved to have the option to confront Elder Maxson, at least. Choice is good!
Not, of course, that I would ever side with the Brotherhood. They're giant dicks, remember? Paladin Danse is pretty OK in my books, though.
If you'd like to read more about the hidden scrapped ending, including the file names, and additional story details they might imply, I suggest reading the original Tumblr post here.