Take a stroll through a visual guide of the Fallout universeNovember 4, 2015
Thanks to imgur user herpmcderpydo we have a great visual guide to the lore of the Fallout Universe!
The Fallout Universe (Lore)
Fallout is based in an alternate timeline that diverges after World War II. In this universe, microtechnology never took off and the immense, inefficient, fossil fuel-dependent technologies of the 1950s remained in place. It is heavily influenced by the science fiction anthology Worlds of Tomorrow, and as such the universe is a stylized representation of the future as envisioned by people in the 1940s through 1960s. This explains much of the aesthetics, the house-cleaning robots, the tail-finned automobiles, the neighbors saying “Hey there, sport!” and the gigantic supercomputers. In other words, the Fallout universe can be viewed as a stylized representation of the future through the eyes of those living in the beginning of the Atomic Age.
The Great War of Saturday October 23rd, 2077
“I do not know what the Third World War will be like, but I do know there will be no Fourth World War.” Fossil fuels were nearly exhausted by 2050, and this led to a very tense geopolitical struggle between major superpowers – particular China, Russia, and the United States. Thus, the major contributing factor to the Great War was a scarcity of oil, leading to the Resource Wars as nations fought for resources. This included China invading Alaska and U.S. annexing Canada. Ultimately, the situation came to a head as key members of the U.S. Government (the Enclave) retreated to their safe zone on an oil rig, and all nuclear-armed nations let loose. In just under 2 hours, the modern world came to a hault.
Thankfully, the government commissioned Vaults!
The U.S. government commissioned the Vault-Tec Corporation to build underground bunkers termed vaults. Their stated purpose was to house and protect the American people in the event of nuclear war until the surface was safe to re-colonize.They had another purpose. Their REAL purpose… The vaults were ACTUALLY designed to allow the government, the Enclave, to conduct social experiments on the vault dwellers and see how different populations react to different situations. Of the 122 known vaults, only 17 were made as experimental controls. That is, they were made to the public’s expectations as an actual fallout shelter. As such, various other experimental vaults had different populations and designs. Each vault was run by an official called the Overseer and each vault had different experimental conditions. For example, there was a vault populated entirely by clones of a man named Gary. There was a vault where the door was deliberately left open, exposing its inhabitants to nuclear radiation and transforming them into subterranean Ghouls, thereby establishing the city of Necropolis. There was a vault populated by 20 men, 10 women, and 1 panther, and a vault where psychotropic drugs were set to be released into the ventilation system 10 days after the door was sealed. There was even a vault where inhabitants lived connected to a virtual reality simulation in which the Overseer mercilessly tormented them. Another vault was deliberate overstocked with unsecured weapons and explosives, giving rise to the Boomers of the Mojave Wasteland. Some vaults were purposely overcrowded, or genders were disproportionate, or deliberately segregated. Inhabitants were often deliberately selected for specific characteristics. The town of Arroyo in Fallout 2 was established by the original Vault Dweller in Fallout 1, who left his vault in search of a water purification device to replace the broken one. So who exactly survived the Great War?
That big guy on the left is a Supermutant Behemoth. And yes, that is a firehydrant in its hand. The supermutants were created by Dr. Richard Moreau after he fell into a vat of green goo called the Forced Evolutionary Virus (FEV) and become a hideously mutated monster called The Master. He was determined to rid the world of the differences which caused the Great War by dipping everyone into vats of green goo, thereby transforming them into supermutants. The supermutants of the D.C. Wasteland, however, originated from a vault in which scientists were experimenting with the FEV virus. They are highly aggressive and attack on sight, whereas their West Coast counterparts may be friendly or aggressive. The existence of the supermutants validated the presence of the Brotherhood of Steel in the Wasteland, as they were a major factor in controlling the dangerous mutant population. The picture on the right shows the most effective method of dispatching such a creature.
“A coterie of bug-eyed fanatics that think all pre-War technology belongs to them!” – Robert House on the Brotherhood
The Brotherhood of Steel is a force for good as well as evil in the Wasteland. They are highly aggressive in their hoarding of pre-War technology, and it has furnished them with the best armors (T-51b Power Armor), technology, and energy weapons. As such, they are to be feared and respected. They believe they are the only salvation the planet has. The Brotherhood of Steel was founded by U.S. Army officers who discovered the truth about secret government-backed experimentation with the FEV virus. They took control of the base where these experiments were conducted and put a stop to them. Soon after, the Great War occurred. The officers then occupied an underground bunker and founded the Brotherhood, which has a long antagonistic history with the Enclave (the remnants of the U.S. government).
Dr. Zimmer describing the Commonwealth
In Fallout 4, you will emerge into the war-ravaged Commonwealth. All we know about this area mainly comes from Dr. Zimmer in Fallout 3 as shown above. The Institute he refers to is indeed the remains of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a now secret organization full of scientists with advanced technology.
Congratulations, Vault Dweller!
Now YOU are equipped with the basic knowledge needed to head out on your own into the Wasteland and interact with the remnants of civilization! But before you go, keep in mind a couple things:
Don’t abuse your medication!
There is a veritable pharmacopoeia of medicinal and recreational chemicals found throughout the world. Some are highly addictive, while others are benign. Be careful regarding what you put in your body, or else you may not be so intelligent or charismatic when you need to be.
And remember kids! Drinking out of random toilets restores your health and is generally a great idea!
Now that the surface is safe to repopulate, head on out of this vault and into the world and find your place in what remains of civilization! There’s a whole world waiting for you!
Once again thank you herpmcherpydo for putting this up for everyone to see!