Players have been hooked on the post-apocalyptic RPG series Fallout ever since the first game was released in 1997. The series’ lore spans hundreds of years.
- What is Best Games Like Deathloop? 15 Best Games Like Deathloop Of All Time Update 02/2024
- What is Best Games Like Assassins Creed? 15 Best Games Like Assassins Creed Of All Time Update 02/2024
- Best Looter Shooter Games. The Ultimate List Update 02/2024
- Is Apple Arcade Worth It? Comprehensive Guide Update 02/2024
- What is Best Farming Agricultural Games? 15 Best Farming Agricultural Games Of All Time Update 02/2024
You’ve found the right place if you’ve ever wanted to know where it all began for the Fallout series or what the newest Fallout game is that you can play right now.
Here, we’ll go through the entire canon of Fallout titles, from the original trilogy to the various spinoffs and add-ons that have been released over the years.
If and when Bethesda announces Fallout 5 or any other Fallout spin-offs, we’ll be sure to add them to this list, so be sure to check back.
The History of Fallout
The Fallout games have been out for a long time. The original Fallout game came out in 1997, and its sequel came out the following year. After that, for roughly a decade, the series went on hiatus, releasing some spin-offs but no further main entries.
At that time, the franchise was taken over by gaming powerhouse Bethesda. With the release of Fallout 3 in 2008, the Fallout franchise returned to the spotlight. In Fallout 3, available for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, the series made the transition from a top-down, old-school RPG to a fully realized, 3D open world.
Soon after, Bethesda released the wildly successful sequel Fallout: New Vegas, which built upon the success of Fallout 3 by adding new features and refining the gameplay.
Fallout followed the gaming industry into the next generation. For the PS4 and Xbox One, the Fallout series began with Fallout 4, and the most recent installment, Fallout 76, was released in 2018.
Where Do the Fallout Games Take Place?
The Wasteland is yours to explore.
That’s right, we’re talking post-apocalyptic here. A nuclear war has decimated American society. You, the player, take on the role of a vault dweller in the majority of Fallout games, someone who has found sanctuary from the nuclear holocaust in an underground bunker. Your adventure starts when you break out of the vault.
Once your journey begins, you’ll see that the old USA has seen better days. The survivors of a nuclear war started over, doing the best they could to put the pieces of society back together. Life in a post-apocalyptic America presents its fair share of difficulties. There are ghouls (Fallout’s equivalent of zombies), killer robots, bandits, and more lurking in the Wasteland.
Several organizations and movements call the Wasteland their home as well. You could run into the Brotherhood of Steel, a paramilitary group with a fixation on acquiring antiquated weapons and machinery. You could also run into the Enclave, who consider themselves the rightful rulers of the Wasteland because they are the descendants of the US government before the war.
Even brand-new nations, like the New California Republic, a sliver of civilized life in the midst of a brutal world, have set up shop in the Wasteland.
Gameplay in Fallout
You can assume any identity you like in the Fallout games.
You’ll begin by customizing your protagonist’s gender, physical traits, and skill set. It’s up to you whether your character is a mechanical genius who can break into anything, or a charismatic master negotiator who can talk their way out of any jam. In Fallout, the possibilities are endless.
The new Fallout games are first-person shooter role-playing games. That means you’ll be immersed in your character’s point of view for the vast majority of the game. A significant part of Fallout is developing your character by acquiring new weapons and armor. The clothes you’re wearing when you emerge from your vault are all you’ll have, but you’ll quickly begin scavenging and collecting new armor, weapons, and abilities.
But Fallout isn’t all about fighting. Many unique people with their own histories and goals will cross your path throughout the course of your adventure. The events of Fallout can be altered based on the decisions you make. You will have the opportunity to shape the Wasteland through your actions and decisions as you progress through the game.
Date of Publication: 10 October 1997
Windows and Mac OS X
Fallout, the first game in the series, was released for personal computers in 1997. It was intended to be a spiritual successor to the 1988 role-playing game Wasteland.
It lays the groundwork for the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. (Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility, and Luck) skill progression system and the bulk of the canonical Fallout lore.
This allowed players to create unique characters by prioritizing different statistics and making decisions as they progressed through the story.
The player’s objective is to find a water chip to replace the one in Vault 13 in this game set in a post-apocalyptic Southern California in the year 2161.
Despite its poor sales performance, Fallout became a commercial success and was praised by critics.
Date of Publication: October 29th, 1998
Windows and Mac OS X
In Fallout 2, which is set 80 years after the original game, players take on the role of the Chosen One, a descendant of a legendary figure who was banished from their homeland.
In the story, you set out to find the Garden of Eden Creation Kit, also known as the G.E.C.K., a device that can stop drought and starvation.
In addition to an improved game engine, Fallout 2 is also notable for its extensive use of pop culture references and inside jokes.
Four passive skills, six combat skills, and eight active skills ranging from 0% to 300% are available for equipping.
The game was a commercial success, and critics praised its innovative gameplay and compelling narrative.
Date of Publication: October 28th, 2008
Systems: PC, PS3, and XBox 360
With the release of Fallout 3, the series has undergone a major transition as Bethesda took over ownership after purchasing the franchise from Fallout’s original developers, Interplay.
In addition to PC, major consoles would get a mainline Fallout game for the first time.
To play, you’ll step into the shoes of a Vault 101 inhabitant as he prepares to leave his home on the eve of his 19th birthday and explore the Capital Wasteland.
In the year 2277, some 36 years after the events of Fallout 2, the protagonist is still looking for his missing father, who vanished from Vault 101.
Fallout 3’s release was met with widespread acclaim, with critics praising the game’s freeform structure, adaptive leveling, and innovative V.A.T.S. combat system.
The date of this release is 11/10/2015.
Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One
Ten years have passed since the events of Fallout 3, and the year is 2288. This is 210 years after the Great War.
Players assume the role of the Sole Survivor, a resident of Vault 111 who has been in cryogenic stasis for a very long time after witnessing the abduction and murder of their son and spouse.
After escaping Vault 111, the Sole Survivor travels across the Commonwealth Wasteland in search of their missing child, meeting a wide variety of NPCs and overcoming a number of challenges.
More than 111,000 lines of recorded dialogue have been added to the game, and there are also new systems for crafting, building bases, donning layered armor, and modding.
After its release, Fallout 4 received mostly positive reviews, with praise going to the game’s extensive content, player freedom, and creation tools, and criticism going to the game’s convoluted dialogue system.
Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel
Date of Publication: March 15th, 2001
Windows Is The Platform
The first game in a spin-off series was Micro Forté and Interplay’s Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel, a squad-based strategy game.
The story unfolds in the American Midwest, and you take on the role of a fresh recruit for the Brotherhood of Steel as they fight to protect a developing civilization from a variety of monstrosities.
The developer describes the gameplay as “continuous turn-based,” with less emphasis on role-playing and more on tactical, near real-time combat.
Single-player and multiplayer modes feature not only a human protagonist, but also ghouls, super mutants, deathclaws, dogs, and humanoid robots that can be recruited by the player.
The improved combat system in Fallout Tactics was praised by reviewers and series fans alike.
Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel
Date of Publication: January 14, 2004
PlayStation 2, Xbox
The first Fallout game developed specifically for video game consoles, Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel is an action role-playing game by Interplay.
In it, you lead a rescue mission for a group of missing Paladins as a new member of the Brotherhood of Steel.
The player fights armed Raiders, Bandits, Kamikaze Ghouls, Super Mutants, and Radscorpions throughout the game.
Stat values in Brotherhood of Steel are fixed and cannot be modified, in contrast to the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. attribute system in previous Fallout games.
Initial reactions to the game were mixed, with many criticizing the frequent swearing and the game’s lack of variety.
Fallout: New Vegas
October 19, 2010 — Date of Publication
Windows, Playstation 3, and Xbox 360
Fallout: New Vegas, created by Obsidian Entertainment, takes players to a Las Vegas devastated by nuclear war for years.
A player takes on the role of the Courier, a nameless stranger who must travel across the barren landscape of the Mojave Wasteland to deliver a package to Mr. House, the proprietor of New Vegas.
A war is brewing in the background between the New California Republic and local tribes like Caesar’s Legionnaires and the Great Khans, and the player is in the middle of it.
Players engage in real-time combat, advance through a leveling system, and can deviate from the main storyline to complete side quests from a wide variety of offbeat NPCs.
Upon its release, Fallout: New Vegas was praised for its enhanced gameplay and broader content compared to its predecessor, Fallout 3.
Date of Publication: June 14th, 2015
Windows, Playstation 4, Xbox One, Switch, iOS, and Android
The next offshoot, also set in the Fallout universe, was created in-house by Bethesda and takes the form of a base-building survival game.
In Fallout Shelter, players take on the role of the Vault Overseer, the person in charge of planning nuclear fallout shelters, keeping the power on, and tending to the needs of the survivors who find their way inside.
When survivors are recruited, their S.P.E.C.I.A.L. characteristics are used to give them unique names, gear, and roles, and to determine whether or not they will have children.
In order to protect the Vault from enemy raids, players can equip survivors with weapons and send them out into the Wasteland to explore, collect resources, and advance in level.
Some praised Fallout Shelter’s gameplay loop, while others criticized its general lack of depth.
The date of this release is 11/14/2018.
Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One
Since Fallout 76 is focused on multiplayer and does not feature a single-player campaign, Bethesda classifies it as a spin-off of the main series.
In it, players assume the roles of Vault Survivors in West Virginia’s Appalachian Wasteland, on a mission to refound civilization.
With a map that’s four times the size of Fallout 4, players will have plenty of room to spread out in their own custom C.A.M.P.s and mingle with others on their server.
In response to player feedback, Fallout 76 was updated to include human NPCs and implement a revised S.P.E.C.I.A.L. attribute system.
Fallout 76’s contentious placement within the series is well-known at this point, and the game has been met with mostly negative reviews due to a number of technical issues, most notably at launch.
- Story expansion “Operation: Anchorage” featuring player leadership of a strike team against invading Chinese Communist forces; includes new weapons, armor, and other items.
- New quests, non-player characters (NPCs), enemies, and weapons can be found in The Pitt, a downloadable content expansion that takes players through the ruined city of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
- The Broken Steel expansion introduces new weapons, enemy types, perks, and a higher level cap, and tasks players with assisting the Brotherhood of Steel in eliminating the Enclave threat.
- The Point Lookout story expansion introduces a new town, questline, mysteries, and weapons in the form of the enigmatic Point Lookout on the coast.
- Mothership Zeta is a downloadable content add-on in which players attempt to hijack and flee an alien ship by using the ship’s advanced technology to create new weapons and armor.
Fallout: New Vegas
- In the add-on Dead Money, players team up with three other imprisoned Wastelanders to steal back the fabled treasure from the Sierra Madre Casino.
- Honest Hearts is a story expansion that adds new enemies, perks, and weapons to the game by having the player’s caravan be attacked by a band of tribal raiders in Zion Canyon.
- Old World Blues is a downloadable content pack that takes players back in time to the pre-war era with a new home base, new enemies, and a wide variety of weapons, armor, and technology.
- The Lonesome Road adds more story to the game by having players interact with the original Courier Six, who contacts them and sends them to the Divide, where they will face new enemies and gain access to new weapons, perks, and recipes.
- The Gun Runners’ Arsenal is a DLC pack that requires the player to travel across the Mojave Wasteland in order to gain access to a wide variety of new elite class weapons, weapon mods, ammo types, and recipes.
- The Courier’s Stash is a downloadable content expansion that features new weapons, armor, and other items in four pre-order exclusive content bundles (The Caravan Pack, The Classic Pack, The Mercenary Pack, and The Tribal Pack).
- Automatron is a downloadable content add-on that challenges players to track down and destroy hostile robots in order to salvage their parts and use them to create unique allies out of hundreds of different customization options.
- The Wasteland Workshop DLC adds a variety of new building customizations, such as nixie tube lighting, letter kits, taxidermy, and more, to player settlements.
- Extending the story of Valentine’s Detective Agency, “Far Harbor” takes place on an unnamed island off the coast of Maine, where players must go in search of a young woman and a hidden colony.
- The base-building oriented DLC Contraptions Workshop adds new features like conveyor belts, elevators, fireworks, armor racks, scaffolding, tracks, and logic gates.
- The Vault-Tec Workshop is a downloadable content pack that challenges players to construct underground Vaults using pre-war industrial kits, furnished with vintage lighting, art, and furniture.
- The Nuka-World expansion takes players to a former theme park turned lawless metropolis, complete with new quests, enemies, weapons, and more.
- Brewing and distilling, new quests and seasonal events, Survival Mode, and more were all part of the first major update for Fallout 76, titled Wild Appalachia.
- Nuclear Winter was the name of a major update that came out in late 2020 and added a 52-player battle royale mode and team dungeons for the endgame.
- Third major update, Wastelanders, drastically alters the wasteland by populating Appalachia with human NPCs and adding numerous new quests.
- The fourth major update for Fallout 76 was titled “The Legendary Run,” and it added seasonal progression through a battle pass, new legendary perks, and a number of other features.
- The fifth major patch, titled “One Wasteland for All,” added new legendary perks and Daily Ops features while also focusing on balancing the game’s overall experience.
- The Brotherhood of Steel has returned to Appalachia in Steel Dawn, the game’s sixth major content update, which introduces new quest lines and gameplay mechanics.
- Locked & Loaded was the seventh major update, and it added new S.P.E.C.I.A.L. loadouts, Daily Ops, and more to the already-impressive C.A.M.P. and Shelter systems.
- The Brotherhood of Steel saga in Steel Dawn comes to a close with the eighth content update, Steel Reign, which also adds new legendary power armor and other items that can be crafted.
- The Nuclear Winter mode has been removed, and there is now more freedom to personalize your own Private World, in addition to new features like Daily Ops, Season, and the Vault 51 Adventure Mode.
- Major update introducing The Mothman Equinox seasonal event and other quality of life enhancements, such as customizable colors for Pip-boys, the ability to trade legendary loot, and the ability to loot entire zones.
- The Invaders from Beyond seasonal event, 4* legendary effects, and new C.A.M.P. pets are all part of the substantial Fallout 76 update titled Tales from the Stars.
- The Fallout 76 update known as “Expeditions: The Pitt” takes players to the ruins of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where they must face off against a variety of mutant monsters and other dangers.
Which Fallout Game Should You Start With?
The time is now to dive into the Fallout series if you haven’t already. If you’re a fan of classic role-playing games and would like to start with the series’ inception, Fallout and Fallout 2 are excellent options.
Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas offer a more up-to-date alternative. These games may be a little dated now, but they put the Fallout Series on the map, and true fans are still debating which one is superior.
Check out Fallout 4 if you want to play a newer Fallout game with improved graphics and gameplay. Fallout 76 is also fantastic if you enjoy playing games with other people online. It’s not the most well-known Fallout game, but it’s the only one that supports co-op play.
Ready for Your Wasteland Adventure?
The Fallout series has grown from its modest beginnings to become one of gaming’s most successful franchises. The setting of Mad Max, the mechanics of The Elder Scrolls, and a healthy dose of offbeat humor all come together in Fallout.
The Fallout games could be right up your alley if you enjoy exploring alternate timelines and post-apocalyptic America.