The player is usually granted access to this location for the first time from the direction of the Dead City.
Arriving without any psi protection, and needing to get to the Outskirts to receive further mission briefings, the player has two options:
A firefight with a well equipped adversary who outnumber the player 8 to 1 on the short leg to Outskirts.
Talk to the local OOD, pay 5000 Ru as a "transit fee" and move on without incident.
A similar option exists if coming from the Warehouse entrance, but with less than four minutes for the player to make either transition this is usually suicidal. Using a vehicle is possible but the opportunity for errors are many and accidentally running over a Monolith cadre will invalidate the truce.
Return visits (with suitable protection) can be more leisurely affairs depending upon the player's disposition, but only strict non aggression will allow the player the opportunity to meet the Patriarch having initially met Nomad; at which point the Captain apprehends the player for an optional set of side missions that culminate in a visit to the Scorcher compound.
During the scripted blowout, the Monolith will become hostile if you attempt to take shelter with them. Instead take shelter in the Nomad house by running all the way down the road to a small guard house on the right, then make a 180 degree turn and run up the grassy hill (parallel with the road) all the way back to the house. Travelling light or using endurance artifacts is recommended.
The scripted blowout is very buggy. You may be able to hear Patriarch and Captain talking as if the blowout had not yet begun, even after the blowout has ended. The game may crash if you take Nomad's belongings from his stash at the same time as the blowout begins.
There exist three known exploit paths to the Badlands (valid from v1.30013 to 1.4005)
The entire level has quite a few artifacts, but they are mostly slime and slugs, and are typically spread far apart. Though the large garbage piles seem like they would hide a lot of good loot, there are only about 3 artifacts total concealed in the rubble (to v1.4002)
A good looting opportunity can be had if you kill all the monolith after you have met with Patriarch and carry their weapons away in a vehicle. A strategy to attack the main base (scorcher) is to use an RPG-7 to kill all the dozen or so that are grouped together around Patriarch, then kill the remaining few scattered around the base.
There are several food and medical supplies in the first house on the left after you enter the base.
x2 PMm (in a crate inside a wheeled wagon abandoned next to the road)