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Talk:You'll Know It When It Happens

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Star Wars

When you radio in the Legion sniper, one of the dialogue options is a reference to Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope when Han is talking to the guy over the radio in the Death Star detention cells. 00:24, October 25, 2010 (UTC)


Note that when beginning this mission with followers (Boone, ED-E in my case), they inexplicably disappear when entering or exiting the Hoover Dam Visitor's Center.

  • I've seen something similar (with the same party, untested with others) even when not on this quest. They seem to spawn on the second floor for some reason, and have a hard time pathing around to rejoin you.

Another method?

Not sure if this was quite supposed to happen, but I waited for the "Engineer" to plant the bomb, then, immediately after he did so, I confronted him and told him he'd better come with me. He broke conversation, shouted "For Caesar!" and went hostile. He seemed to get blown away before I could even get my weapon out, then I ran to the bomb and diffused it. The Rangers rushed the president out and I was flagged for a successful save. I'd try to recreate it but I hadn't done a manual save in a bit and wasn't about to try to replay a couple of hours just to find out if that was supposed to happen. AnaxagorasZ 01:57, October 27, 2010 (UTC)

Gatling Laser Sniper

Here is something I just did on hardcore. I difused the bomb and went down near the head ranger. When I saw the sniper I fired and eventually killed him with the gatling laser from there all civs and the head ranger ran out but everything else went on and the 3rd attempt never happened (and the president finished the speech). I also did the checks before and took the engineer garb.

Sniper, What Sniper?

I had talked to a girl who said her engineer boyfriend was missing. I figured either he or someone dressed like him was the assasin, so I waited in the crowd and a guy in engineer clothes walked in after the speech had started. I pickpocketed the detonator off him and reported to the ranger and he ordered his troops to get him. The president was whisked away, no bomb exploded, and no sniper showed up. 17:17, November 2, 2010 (UTC)

  • The sniper doesn't seem to take the shot if you alert Grant about the engineer. He'll only take it at the conclusion of Kimball's speech. He's disguised at a Ranger on the nearest tower on the damn. Also, the bomb won't detonate if the engineer is killed or if the detonator is pickpocketed from him. And if you just go kill the sniper first and radio in about it, the engineer will try to attack the president with a knife and be killed anyway. Basically, you only have to deal with all the threats if you choose not to tell Grant about any of them.
  • Yeah I defused the bomb and the told Grant about it and had trouble finding the sniper. Then shots ran out but the President wasn't hit and was whisked away. Only a NPC Ranger died.

Straight (easy) walkthrough

The easiest way is to speak to Ranger Grant outside tell him you're ready and start the mission, where the President's Vertibird then arrives.

Go up then on top of the visitors center, where the Vertibird lands, watch the engineer putting a bomb on it and defuse it. (Before you might have to convince the Private to get past and up, Speech 50 required.)

Run to the guard tower behind the president, you see a dead body falling down, go up and finish the legionaire talking to him he must radio it and he attacks, kill him.

Go back to the speech area, wait for a suspicious engineer coming, pickpocket him and get the failsafe device.

After that go back to Ranger and report him of the device, the president hurries to the helicopter and will leave safely.

Remember to always keep your weapon holstered and not go behind the speech area.

--Marquisor 07:47, November 3, 2010 (UTC)

Serious lag during Vertibird landing

I am doing this quest for the second time now (trying to earn all trophies) and both times I had issues with very slow frame rate, the first time I was able to work through it though it was very difficult without the smooth movement to get my cross hair right on the ranger to initiate the conversation about the bomb. The second time it did it again except this time it froze. After restarting the lag was gone and I was able to easily finish the quest.-- 03:35, November 9, 2010 (UTC)

Hardcore Mode

Whenever I try to start the quest, Ranger Grant tells me the President doesn't arrive until next day, and we should get a good night of rest. Then the game waits an unknown period of time, we finish our Dialogue, and I immediately die of thirst (even though my h20 level was zero when initiating the dialogue) this is rather frustrating and a big problem obviously. Any ideas for fixes or workarounds? might this bhe related to using a mod that changes the timescale?

Possibly another alt route.

I've been trying various combinations to perform this quest, and finally got one where it ends completed, and Grant tells me (outside speech mode) good job, president safe, yadda. I pushed both House and NCR lines up to the choice regarding wether House lives or is taken out of the game, then decided I should side with Yes Man and pushed to the Kimball speech. I'm at liked toward NCR but could get full access to the place and allowed to use my arsenal. Kinda odd since I got and failed Don't tread on the bear, and NCR shouldn't accept my help anymore.

So what I did : Find about the missing engineer, inspect the blood, grab a NCR jumpsuit (thought didn't use it) / Check the terminal, find about the unknown access to snipers' location / Tell Grant we're good to go / Pickpocket the legion engineer to get the detonator / Defuse the bomb once he installed it / Snipe the assassin before he killed the NCR sniper / Watch over the legion engineer during the whole speech.

Oddly, the engineer never attempted to stab Kimball. I spent the whole speech with my sniper rifle pointed on his neck for nothing (during one combination, he one-hit stabbed a supposedly full-alert ranger... talk about tough guys). Didn't even try when Kimball got off the scene and walked back to the vertibird. Quest completed allright, no one cowering in fear nor griting teeth.

But after that I decided to give a sneaky .308 finishing touch to the legion engineer, and they all went into fear/agro mode so they spy's gonna live (even with a solid NCR disguise). Mortbise 11:29, November 20, 2010 (UTC)

  • I had a similar thing happen. Maybe the Engineer won't do something if you're staring directly at them? Kahlzun 08:03, November 24, 2010 (UTC)

Easiest / Fastest Way

The easiest (and fastest) way to complete this quest (I've just done it 3 times today as I'm getting all the ending achievements and it has worked every time thru). I've always done the security sweep (gone into the Supply Closet for the blood stain and then talked to a female engineer upstairs who's looking for her lost friend) but this may not be necessary, I've just always done it. Exit the Visitor's Center and talk to Ranger Grant. Go towards the Vertibird ladder and talk to the Private (and put on Engineer jumpsuit if necessary), go up the ladder to the Vertibird landing area, sneak and pickpocket the Engineer leaning against the wall (if you hang back a bit and let the wall corner shield you, you should be able to get "Hidden" (at least at my sneak level). The Engineer has two items, one of which is the failsafe detonator, and he has something else which I don't recall but I've always swiped it. Wait for the Vertibird to land. Wait for the Engineer to approach it and walk away (I assume he's planting the bomb then). Go up to the Vertibird and click on it to get the dialog to disarm the bomb and do so. Kill the engineer (he's either walking away from the Vertibird if you've been swift enough or he has gone down the ladder - you can still kill him after he's gone down the ladder w/o NCR repercussions). After you kill the Engineer everyone ducks down and the President and his two henchmen immediately go to the Vertibird and depart (like five / ten seconds after you've killed the Engineer). You don't have to worry about the other two Legion assassins as the Prez has already left. You will get the Quest Complete message in about 20 / 30 seconds after the Prez has bugged out - no need to talk to Ranger Grant or do anything else. You can do this in about two minutes and be done with the quest.De stijl 23:57, November 20, 2010 (UTC)

Did the exact thing in my hardcore run-through and it worked like a charm.De stijl 07:07, November 30, 2010 (UTC)
You don't need to wait for the Engineer to plant the bomb; just talk to him as soon as you see him. He's aggressive, and wants to know if there's a problem. If you reply that he's the problem, or that your dog doesn't like him, and then offer to call the MPs or go somewhere private, he attacks with a knife. Kill him, and the speech is off; the Prez takes off immediately, and the quest completes. Grant stays in an aggressive stance and won't talk, but you still get the credit.Tharnhelm 21:09, June 3, 2011 (UTC)

Actually, do nothing. As soon as the speech begins, snipe Watson and the president will start fleeing. Casually walk up to the vertibird landing, (the guard will be fleeing and won't stop you no matter your faction/karma) disable bomb, complete. For some odd reason Watson doesn't trigger negative karma or hostile peeps as if he was one of the legion spies. I swear his story and the one in Kimball's speech do not match. Watson will never do anything to harm the president, though. KaisarDragon 08:57, November 21, 2010 (UTC)

- If you receive the quest from Yesman or House you can fail this quest instantly by attacking a random ncr and gaining infamy. The presidents speech will be canceled and house/yesman will say you saved Kimbell. Only really useful if your trying to get the house always wins achievement done faster.


When i left the visitors center from the upper level after i started the quest boone said to me, out of dialogue just audible, 'if i was an assassin i'd be up on that ridge, or if i didn't care about escaping i'd be on one of the towers or the landing pad behind us.' obviously this is a massive clue but should it be added to the article or not? i'm kinda new to this. 10 dec 2010

Where is Colonel Moore?

When I received this quest from Mr. House in my second playthrough (after completing the NCR questline in my first), Colonel Moore did not appear. She was not present on the helipad to meet with President Kimball, she did not escort him to the stage, and she did not introduce him to the crowd. There was a brief pause where she should have spoken, and then President Kimball stepped forward and gave his speech as normal (including the "Thank you, Colonel Moore" part). I then searched the Hoover Dam Offices, and was unable to find her there, either. The quest was completed without any problems, however, and this is showing no signs of hindering my progress. I doubt it will in the future, as I'm doing House's questline and should not need to report to her for anything.

Also, on a somewhat unrelated note, I loaded a save from the middle of this attempt of doing this quest (just before taking out the sniper), and completed it several times. All three times, without fail, the moment President Kimball's vertibird was out of view and the "Quest Complete" message appeared in the screen, a squad of Legionary Assassins came running up the road guns blazing. It really looked like they were trying to crash Kimball's speech, but I assume it's more likely that they were just after me. Still, talk about awful timing! Finally track down a troublesome courier just to find that you JUST missed an extremely high value political target AND you stumble into a nest of NCR Rangers? Man, it is just not a good day to be an assassin. Science-Doer 04:01, December 21, 2010 (UTC)

Ya, if you have a bad or mixed rep with the legion, a group of assassins will regularly try to kill you, unless you're in a settlement (The Strip, Freeside, westside, etc.) but Hoover Dam doesn't count as a settlement apparently.

Fail! Crossed story lines

I have noticed many of the quests had rather clunky wrap-ups (e.g. After killing Benny, I can still able to inquire about his whereabouts, etc.), but I hadn't encountered any loose ends that impeded my progress as much as this!

I chose to side with Yes Man, the NCR, and Mr. House throughout the game. Once I got the mission from Colonel Moore to kill Mr. House, I took a long detour from helping the NCR and did some quests for Mr. House and Yes Man. One quest from Mr. House was to make sure the President was safe at Hoover Dam (i.e. this talk page's quest). I successfully completed this quest -- and once I did, I got Success for "You'll Know It When It Happens". I ultimately decided to side with the NCR, so I killed Mr. House. I first went to Yes Man (who then installed himself in the Lucky 38) and sent me to the Hoover Dam to install some device, which triggered the quest "No Gods, No Masters."

While I was at the Dam, I reported back to Colonel Moore that Mr. House was dead. She was pleased, and proceeded to ask me to get rid of some other enemies (all of whom I had already disposed of). Even though the dialogue was clunky, at least I was able to tell her that I had already completed those missions. When she told me the President was going to visit, I thought "again?" and then "uh-oh..."

Colonel Moore then told me to report to Grant in the Visitor's Center, and I knew this might not end well, because I already did this quest. I hoped that talking to her again would trigger the option "The President is safe" but alas, it did not. I found Grant standing in the same spot I had left him, outside, overlooking the podium. The Engineer was still lying dead on the stairs, too. I tried to speak with Grant, but could not interact with him at all. Clicking 'x' did nothing.

So, Mr. House is dead, Caesar is dead, and I can't proceed with the NCR, so I have to go with Yes Man. I do have older save files, but I was hoping to be able to play a little longer without getting caught in a storyline fail! --Deboriole 06:05, December 24, 2010 (UTC)

Yep, same thing happened to me; I guess I'm heading back to Yes Man to see what can be done. Wish the developers would've spent less time on cute cultural references and a little more time reconciling plot lines.

-- Similar thing happened to me. I had completed side bets for yesman and the house always wins 3. I then killed house for the ncr. After getting the brotherhood to agree to a truce I decided to upload yesman. Yesman sent me to save Kimbell at Hoover damn. I turned in the brotherhood part of For the Republic and received You'll Know it When it Happens. I completed the quest via the 1 minute disarm the bomb and let the sniper miss method. The quest finishing touches updated but for the republic did not and the quest giver would only tell me to go and protect the president. I could not wait or fast travel as the game thought the quest was still active. Fortunately I was able to reload a save before uploading yesman. The quest worked properly when I only did You'll Know for one faction. Finished the quest for yesman, then whent to the substation and then started the final battle without a hitch. Then i reloaded and did the quest and final battle for the ncr. It seems that i got lucky and actually benefited from the glitch where as most people have had there game break from it.

Kimball never made it home

Not on my watch, anyway.

When the vertibird left safely, I watched it through the scope of my laser rifle, only to see it apparently stop somewhere past the rocky hills to the west. Since the quest had already reported as finished, I decided to go after it by circling back around to Boulder City, only to have it disappear as I tried to get closer. After loading my last save a few times and experimenting a bit, I got about as close as I could without it vanishing (east of Boulder City, with the vertibird a reasonably large speck in the sky).

So, I did the only logical thing you can do in this kind of situation, and blazed away with laser fire until I was rewarded with a suitable explosion. I guess the NCR's communications need some work, though, since everyone back at Hoover Dam seemed to be unaware that their President had suffered a fiery death.

I Failed This Quest... BULLSHIT!

I got this quest and I went to go do it. I had a good reputation with the NCR and I was disguised as one as well, and I went to go speak with the Ranger for the quest. When I entered the building to go see him, my reputation all of a sudden lowered and it had auto-saved when I entered the building, so there was no way of changing it. I was pissed because it failed and there was nothing I could do about it.

That's very odd. It may depend on how you received the quest. Did you get it from Colonel Moore? If you convinced the BoS to ally with the NCR, you do lose rep with the NCR for making that choice. Also, if you received the quest from Mr. House as part of The House Always Wins quest line, this may affect your rep with NCR, as working with him is "frowned upon". Also, is it possible you did something in between that affected your NCR rep? I'm running out of possibilities... Eganio{Talk} 19:51, February 4, 2011 (UTC)

Lost reputation?

I completed this quest, somewhat, and LOST reputation. I went from Idolized to Accepted. I think it's related to the bug about being unable to get back to the vertibird ladder. 10:06, January 5, 2011 (UTC)

Another easy option?

I just did the security sweep then told Grant I was ready. I then when up to the tower behind the stage and waited. When the sniper showed up, I killed him and reported back using the radio. The President's speech ended early and the quest finished. No bomb or stabbing attempt

Nothing Happened?

I went outside, talked to Grant, and he said, "Here comes the President's vertibird". So the vertibird landed, then took off immediately. No speech, no assassination attempts, no nothing. The mission was complete.

Same for me.  Given the quest by Yes Man, turned up, walked around a bit, 

Boone mentioned the first tower so for good measure I stealth shot the guy up there and then I went to the landing pad. The vertibird took off as soon as it landed and the mission (and the achievement) were awarded to me. Result in a way I suppose but very unsatisfying. 11:52, July 20, 2011 (UTC)TheOriginalAMJ3

Oh god

Ok really simple yet absolutely terrible problem here! I was given this quest via yes man, I did everything up to being told to go outside, all the doors are locked!! I've gone through every hallway in the entire building and I can't find a way to get out, it's taken hours, will someone please help and tell me how to get out. The pages says to take the ladder but the only ladder I could find lead to an empty tower. Please help!

How do I get out?


Okay. So i finished talking to moore, and told her i convinced the BOS, to join forces with the NCR, and she tells me some crap. and i get this quest, but when i get up to Grant, all he says is that we have alot of work before the presidents arival. and my only speach option is "goodbye". I am sooo lost. Im Idolized by the NCR so it should work, but it doesnt. what should i do?

Easy complete bug

Template:Platform When the Vertibird is flying to come over to the base to land. Press X and you'll complete the quest without having to protect him.

Yea. Well when I was playing, I went up to the observation deck, and used my laser rifle to shoot the vertibird (though it does nothing) it scared the engineer that was up there and he went downstairs...The Vertibird came down and I pressed X, it then flew back up and I completed the quest. This is on PS3. My first play through so I dunno what would happen.Melmelcom 03:30, February 19, 2011 (UTC)



Only on the platform with the vertibird and on the stage, stay away from those areas and viola. Boone123 06:23, March 18, 2011 (UTC)


When I talked to Grant I got only one speech option, which was goodbye, and read that was because of a quest and I would just have to fail it. So I saved and decided to go on a killing rampage to blow off some steam about it and walked around the counter to start by killing grant. Just as I rounded the counter he turned to me and began the dialogue, giving me all my speech options and allowing me to continue the quest.

Unused Script?

Here I am exploiting all possible developments for this quest and one of the last things to occur to me was: what if I killed the bird myself? As in, before Kimball boards it. This page covers the possibility of not having the skill to disarm the bomb upon finding it, informing we're still being able to report it to Grant, yet the only thing it says will be the continuation to that is: Once reported, Grant will cancel the speech and usher Kimball to safety by various means. That hints at the alternate evacuation route that Grant mentions - the locked safe room. Well, I suppose I could've used the console to lower my skills and be unable to disarm (it doesn't give us the choice not to if we are able to do it), but what first occurred to me was taking the vertibird out of the equation in a more crude fashion.

So I arranged for that as follows: told companions to pack up and go home (often times they're a conduit to NPCs becoming hostile and I didn't want that here); I happened to have the search hound following me and couldn't return it, so I stealth killed it; noone noticed. Then I dropped 3 C-4 under the bird, got to safety, down to stealth and out of sight, just to be sure, and finally detonated the fireworks. The prez happened to already be on his way out of the Dam but luckily he wasn't near the blast radius yet. Also luckily, noone turned hostile. For more than a split second, anyway.

As I'd hoped, they rushed for the safe room. As the bird explodes, the doors to the visitor center became unlocked and I followed the prez inside; soon as I'm in, I see him and his bodyguards rush into the room. Well, as soon as they enter, a bomb goes off! Hah! And what makes this seem like a discarded script - even though Grant mentions this contingency; and never mind how unlikely it is the Legion even managed to plant a bomb inside a room who only the top of the top brass had access to and secured before it was "Very Hard" locked - is that when he dies from this bomb, the quest fails.

Considering we can fail to protect him yet succeed this mission and since they made it so there was a bomb there waiting for him, logic dictates this path for the quest was left unfinished or discarded. Well, it's not impossible this is meant to happen, but it would be rather inconsistent if it's acceptable that he dies by headshot or blown copter yet not so from simply another of the assassination attempts.

So, to be doubly sure, I loaded my Quick Save, when Kimball is still giving his speech. Visitor center doors are key-locked. Used the "unlock" console command to open them and broke into the safe room. I couldn't find a bomb or any trigger I could interact with which only confirms my belief this path was scrapped.


Not really an edit-in, but I decided to check out that last possible venue before I published this: I console-lowered my Repair and Explosives skills so as to be unable to disarm the bomb. However, this results in not being able to find the bomb to begin with! As I stated above, if we got the skill to "Examine" the vertibird and find the bomb, we will automatically disarm it, there are no options. Though, since someone posted that note on the page, the one I quote in the first paragraph, I imagine we used to have the option of leaving the bomb alone. Or that we could find it even if being unable to disarm it. A shame whoever posted that note didn't describe how exactly the quest progressed from there, but I presume it was the same dead end as I encountered, which would be a reason for patched versions to have options regarding the bomb removed, though if that's the case I suppose they forgot about the possibility of us destroying the vertibird ourselves.

I just previewed this and I see it's a long one. Excuse the wall of text, folks.


This one is an edit-in. Disregard my whole idea of it being an unused script. While it does still seem that way since it's hard to get them to go to the safe room, I just repeated this quest for the ending I wanted and was my memory was refreshed that we do fail this quest whenever Prez Kimball dies. We continue on with the other quest of the faction we're going for, but this one does end in failure. My mistake. Nonetheless, the whole safe-room route remains an odd occurrence that's difficult to make happen, so debate on it is still worthwhile I think.

Getting President suit?

Are there any ways to get the president's suit? Preferable without failing the quest.. Or at least no lost reputation?

president kimball won't move

i allyed ncr with bos and great khans and disarmed the bomb and when i disarmed the bomb, i told grant and he said ok and the rangers never took the engineer away and when i try to talk to him, he says not now! so i thought that was part of the game. i then went to the tower and killed the legion sniper. i then went to grant and he still said not now. so now i went and pickpocketed the engineer and got the detonator. i then remembered i forgot to radio in the legion sniper in the tower so i went there to radio it in and grant tells me on the radio not now! like no dialogue option he just says not now. when kimball was done with his speech, he said something i didn't hear, and now he won't move at all. i tryed saving it and waiting so i could fail the quest and it says kimball died. and i remembered that the autosave happened when i waited. so kimball glitched and i can't reload. what do i do??????????

  • i had the same thing happen i stopped all attempts then the president finished but never left the stage so i i used brass knuckes and struck the engineer in the crowd this made him pull a knife and the rangers shoot him then the president gets rushed away . hope that helps

Kimball won't leave

Regardless of how I complete the quest, Kimball just stands at the chopper with his thumb up his ass. The only way for me to complete the quest is to let him die. This is a problem since I'm playing NCR and thus want him alive. I've tried everything on the wiki, even the setstage command listed in bugs(That just broke EVERYTHING), but to no avail. Halp? Oh, and if I use the concommand "setstage 00131f08 100" it completes, but Kimball is STILL standing on the landing pad next to his vertibird.


The article notes: "You can automatically fail the quest if you take the ladder down to the shore and swim to the opposite end of the Hoover Dam." It says this happens on PC and Playstation, but it also happens on the 360. It just happened to me. 11:40, 27 August 2012 (UTC)