Fallout is a series of post-apocalyptic role-playing video games created by Interplay Entertainment, currently owned by Bethesda Softworks. The franchise's timeline stretches from pre-War years, to the "future of the fifties," to the decades following the destruction of the earth by nuclear war.[Dev 1] With the goal of exploring ideas revolving around a futuristic, post-nuclear world, the game setting exists on a timeline that branched after World War II.[Dev 2][Dev 3] This fork led to a world where technology progressed quickly while maintaining the cultural norms of the mid-century.[Pub 1][Pub 2][Pub 3]A worldwide shortage of resources such as petroleum and uranium led to a series of conflicts between the United States, Canada, China, and European powers that were known as the Resource Wars. These conflicts culminated in the breakdown of the United Nations and deployment of nuclear missiles at and by the United States, a global nuclear event known as the Great War.
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|William Shippard's remains are entombed in the Old North Church crypt.
|2032 Feb 5
|Cherise Fanno, future patient of Parsons State Insane Asylum, is born.
|2053 Feb 5
|Randall Clark is born.
|Construction of Vault 76 begins.
|2075 Feb 14
|The Anaheim Jets win Super Bowl CXII, 95-90.
|2075 Feb 15
|The CEO of Dyer Chemical hands over control of the company's production line for Project Clean & Clear.
|2076 Feb 16
|West Tek starts human FEV mutation experiments at Huntersville.
|The M42 "Fat Man" Launcher development begins at Fort Strong.
|2077 Feb 16
|The testing of the ARCHIMEDES weapons system is successful.
|2084 Feb 15
|Judith Blackwell dies.
|2241 Feb 10
|A survey party from Vault 101 led by Anne Palmer scouts the area of Springvale and Megaton.
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- Vidya: "I don't know who you are, but I'm glad you're here to help us. My name is Vidya - I guess I'm the town doctor. If you're hurt, I can heal you at no charge."
Initiate: "You don't seem like you're from around here, Vidya."
Vidya: "I used to belong to a group called the Followers of the Apocalypse, but that... didn't work out. I have some medical training, so now I'm helping these people."
- Fallout 3 manual p. 2: "Fallout 3 presents a much grimmer reality. Imagine if, after World War II, the timeline had split. Our world forked into one branch, the Fallout universe the other. In that other branch, technology progressed at a much more impressive rate, while American society remained locked in the cultural norms of the 1950's. It was an idyllic “"world of tomorrow," filled with servant robots, beehive hairdos, and fusion-powered cars. And then in the year 2077, at the climax of a long-running war with China, it all went to hell in a globe-shattering nuclear war."
- Fallout 3 manual p. 2: "Nuclear war. The very words conjure images of mushroom clouds, gas masks, and bewildered children ducking and covering under their school desks. But it's the aftermath of such a conflict that truly captures our imaginations, in large part because there’s no real-world equivalent we can relate to. Mankind may have witnessed the horror of the atomic bomb, but thankfully we’ve somehow succeeded in not blowing up the entire planet. At least, not yet."
- Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel Manual p. 2: "In a future not far removed from our own, a world filled with marvel and wonder is shaken to its very foundations by the greed and destruction of mankind."
- Leonard Boyarsky: "As Art Director, I was responsible for the look and mood of the game (as far as visuals were concerned). I came up with the idea of the “future of the fifties” setting, and had to convince everyone that that was the way to go. I also came up with the idea/design for the “Vault Boy” and the “cards” (as I called them) showing him doing all the different things in humorous ways. By the way, he’s not the Pip Boy, the Pip Boy is the little guy on your Pip Boy interface. The Vault Boy was supposed to evoke the feel of Monopoly cards, and the Pip Boy was based on the Bob’s Big Boy mascot."
(Leonard Boyarsky; Fallout Developers Profile)
- Fallout Bible 6: "What was U.S./world history like before the timeline included in previous Fallout updates?"
"No one has asked this yet, but I thought I would cut this question off at the pass. Fallout takes place on a future earth, in an alternate timeline. I will not be including any information on how and when it diverged - it will remain one of the mysteries of the setting. Just let it be known that it diverged after WW2, and leave it at that."
- Tim Cain: "My idea is to explore more of the world and more of the ethics of a post-nuclear world, not to make a better plasma gun."
(Chat with Tim Cain; March 9th, 2002)