Image used as concept design for Sparky in the Van Buren design document
|The following is based on Van Buren and has not been confirmed by canon sources.|
Sparky is a former railway worker who blasted away rocks with powerful explosives. He earned his name from the arc welder he carried around to light fuses. Sparky joined a powder gang after the railway operations shut down. He did well in the group, making plenty of raw explosive traps for their use.
However, that all ended when the 5th Engineering Company was deployed to track down the responsible gang. The gang, finally afraid of New California Republic's focused might, retreated to Burham Springs. The NCR's firepower forced the gang to retreat into the mines. The commanding NCR officer, Maj. Robert "Border" Briggs, hastily ordered his men to plant explosives around the mine and detonate them, blowing the mines. Sparky survived, but only barely. His hearing was almost entirely destroyed, and his mind was shaken pretty badly. He's clear-headed enough to work with Phil and to recognize Frank, but not much else.
Interactions with the player character
When entering Burham Springs, the first area the player will see is the burning village itself. He will most likely encounter Phil, Sparky, and Frank as soon as he or she walks down the central street in town. The player can trade with these characters and learn about the background of Burham Springs as well as the horrible dangers that lie just inside the cave mouth.
Phil, Sparky, and Frank are buddies, even though it might not seem like it. If anyone starts shit in New Canaan (attacking or stealing from one of the three), they are all on the same team and will go after the player and his or her companions, full bore. Sparky can become extremely agitated by very loud noises (like shouting right next to him, a shotgun blast near him, etc.), and will attack the source.
Extinguishing the fires of Burham Springs helps the New California Republic gain back some valuable energy resources, but it effectively ends the salvaging of Phil, Sparky, and Frank. It also kills all of the gehennas, which could be considered good or bad.
If the player kills Phil, Sparky, and Frank, he will get the title Desolator.
- Get Rid of Lingering Geckos, Phil and Sparky are damned tired of all the geckos creeping around the edges of Burham Springs. They don't want to waste time and ammunition going after the creeps, but they're afraid the small beasts will eventually attack them en masse. Phil and Sparky want them dead or gone.
- Blow Up the Mines for CoS, the Brotherhood of Steel is aware that there's a bunch of good technology lying around in the Burham Springs mines. They want to prevent it from being distributed throughout the wastes by Phil, Sparky, and Frank. The core Brotherhood does not want anything done to those three, but they do want to reclaim as much of the old tech as they can. However, the Circle of Steel has different plans. Even if you recover all tech from the Brotherhood, the Circle wants Phil, Sparky, and Frank dead.
- New Canaan Connection, Jeremiah Rigdon, the living prophet of New Canaan, wishes to enter into a trade agreement with Phil, Sparky, and Frank at Burham Springs.
6 dynamite sticks
Drops on death
- Burham Springs design document/1
- Burham Springs design document/2
- Burham Springs design document/3
- New Canaan design document/3
- Van Buren Burham Springs design document - Sparky. 
- Van Buren Burham Springs design document - Area background. 
- Van Buren New Canaan design document - Area background. 
- Van Buren New Canaan design document - Town-specific. 
- Van Buren Burham Springs design document - Moral dilemmas. 
- Van Buren Burham Springs design document - Other role-playing tests and epithets. 
- Van Buren Burham Springs design document - Get rid of lingering geckos. 
- Van Buren Burham Springs design document - Blow up the mines for CoS. 
- Van Buren Burham Springs design document - New Canaan connection.