Caesar's Legion is an imperialistic, reactionary, and totalitarian dictatorship based on large scale slavery and tribal dominance. Founded in 2247 by Edward Sallow, who then renamed himself Caesar, and Joshua Graham (also known as the Malpais Legate), the Legion uses trappings of the ancient Roman Empire as part of a unifying identity imposed on its tribes but does not recreate any cultural, social, or political institutions of ancient Rome. The Legion itself is simply a slave army built on ruthlessly utilitarian principles, supported by several tributary populations.[Non-game 1]
Enslaved men are used for combat, and are called legionaries, while enslaved women are forced to bear children and support the war effort. Both are predominately reconditioned tribals, forming a well-organized, culturally insular fighting force that, as of 2281, mainly operates east of the Colorado River and the Grand Canyon, primarily in the former states of Arizona and New Mexico with footholds in Utah and Colorado.
Caesar reconditions his soldiers to worship him as the "son of Mars," supposedly sent by the god of war to conquer and civilize the wastelands, but he has made no effort to establish a civilian culture (“civilized“ communities who submit to Legion rule are generally allowed to keep their freedom to an extent, rather than being absorbed into the army), as his ultimate goal is to conquer the New California Republic and merge its civilian culture and infrastructure with the military strength of the Legion, creating a new totalitarian empire.
- 1 Background
- 2 Society
- 3 Military
- 4 Relations with the outside
- 5 Technology
- 6 Interactions with the player character
- 7 Notable members (by rank)
- 8 Appearances
- 9 Behind the scenes
- 10 Gallery
- 11 References
In the year 2246, the Followers of the Apocalypse sent a group to the Grand Canyon to study the region’s tribal languages. The group included Followers Edward Sallow, Calhoun, a physician, Mormon missionary Joshua Graham, a specialist in tribal dialects. Not long into their travels, the group was captured by the Blackfoot tribe and held for ransom.
At the time, the tribe warred against seven other tribes and suffered from a lack of skill in warfare. Against his companions' wishes, Sallow aided the Blackfoots to save him and his companions from their captor’s enemies, giving them knowledge in gun maintenance, small unit tactics, explosive improvisation, and military strategy. The tribals admired Sallow so much that they made him their leader. With that, Sallow took the name Caesar and began reorganizing the tribals he commanded into the Legion.
Caesar established warfare policies in the Legion based on the concepts of "divide and conquer" and "total war." The Legion defeated the region's seven tribes from weakest to strongest and completely dominated each faction's land and people. The people conquered in campaigns were conscripted, enslaved, or killed. Caesar saw the tribes "playing at war," and tribals viewed his tactics as foreign, as their warfare consisted of skirmishes that never escalated into major conflicts.
With the combined leadership of Caesar and Graham, declared the "Malpais Legate," the Legion led campaigns against more tribes, forming a fanatically loyal army with their captives. In the early days of the Legion, the Twisted Hairs tribe of Arizona would aid the Legion as scouts, however, their ally would eventually reward them by invading and forcefully assimilating them into the Legion.
In 2271, the Legion's presence served as a catalyst for the Ranger Unification Treaty. President Kimball recounts during that year, the Desert Rangers of Nevada joined the New California Republic's forces to protect the region against "the tyranny of [Caesar's] regime."
Subsequently, the Legion expanded west into the Mojave and established a base of operations on Fortification Hill overlooking Lake Mead and the Colorado River in 2277. The advancing forces eventually made contact with the NCR near New Vegas and began a campaign to take the region with their forces consisting of 87 conquered tribes.
Under the command of the Malpais Legate, Legion forces marched against the New California Republic garrison at Hoover Dam, in an attempt to take the strategic asset and river crossing. In what became known as the First Battle of Hoover Dam, The Malpais Legate advanced against the NCR defenders but his forces were unable to penetrate the Republic's defenses. The NCR 1st Reconnaissance Battalion and NCR Rangers, under the command of Chief Hanlon, executed a tactical retreat west into Boulder City after using their prowess in marksmanship to kill the Legion's centurions and decani from afar, an act that prompted the Malpais Legate to order the Legion's elite forces to push forward in pursuit of the enemy sharpshooters. He realized too late that the Rangers and First Recon had booby-trapped Boulder City, laying explosives all along their route of retreat and throughout the city itself.
When the Legion's elite forces entered the city, the Rangers and First Recon detonated the explosives and inflicted severe casualties on the enemy, crippling their offensive. Shortly after the few survivors of the trap at Boulder City were finished off, NCR Troopers under the command of General Lee Oliver then counter-attacked, pushing back and eventually routing the Legion's main force after having successfully held the Dam. Caesar, angered at the failure of his Legate, made an example of him. The Praetorian guard covered the Legate in pitch, set him on fire, and cast him into the depths of the Grand Canyon. Caesar forbade mention of his name and now he is spoken of only in hushed whispers by the lowest legionaries and slaves, who call him the Burned Man.
By 2281, Caesar's Legion has reestablished its power in the west, rebuilt its army, and has slowly encroached on the city of New Vegas. They continue to contest NCR in the Mojave region, destroying several NCR bases such as Ranger Station Charlie and Camp Searchlight, overrunning the NCR town of Nelson, decimating the town of Nipton and creating unease and terror across the region.
The Legion proper is first and foremost a slave army, the sole owner of which is Caesar. As Caesar conquers the peoples of the wasteland, he strips them of their tribal identities and merges them into his forces. There is no other tribe than the Legion itself. Notably, the non-tribal people who live in Legion-controlled territory are not considered legionaries. They are subjects of the Legion, living in the cities and towns under its control, and are generally left free to do whatever they wish, as long as they do not interfere with Legion operations or endanger its position.[Non-game 2]
The brutality of the Legion is a major problem for many, but it also brings benefits. Arizona was once a lawless wasteland where crossing two miles without a clash with raiders was a major feat. The Legion brought peace and quiet to the entire state by exterminating and enslaving the raider tribes.
The focus of the Legion's ideology is survival and long term stability at all costs. Caesar disregards democracies as ineffective, fostering corruption, and disintegration. Ancient Rome was a militarized autocracy that effectively assimilated the cultures it conquered which he saw as the perfect template for a society that would survive and thrive in the face of the challenges of the post-nuclear world. By dedicating its members to a higher ideal, he seeks to prevent humanity from fracturing and destroying itself again. He believes that the only way to achieve this is through enforcing a nationalist, imperialist, totalitarian, homogeneous culture that obliterates the identity of every group it conquers. The individual has no value beyond his utility to the state, whether as an instrument of war or production.
A natural consequence of this is the emphasis placed on personal sacrifice. Victory cannot be achieved without sacrificing blood and life. To this end, the Legion shuns robots, as they firmly believe that mankind requires warriors and their sacrifice, rather than gadgets that allow for bloodless victories. Naturally, the Legion forbids painkillers and other chems as detrimental to the human condition and Caesar's long-term plans to reshape humanity. Ignorance of medical science among the legionaries also ensures that only the hardiest will survive and go on to become deadly veterans.
Politically, this philosophy is expressed in a general disdain for democracy as a weak and ineffective system that fosters disunity, greed, and self-interest at the expense of the collective and the greater good. Caesar cites the NCR as an example, focusing on government corruption by wealthy brahmin barons and landowners, greed permeating every level of society, all leading to the abandonment of the collective and the greater good. The Legion is intended to be the Republic's opposite, shunning democracy in favor of a strong, centralized rule that would prevent fragmentation and internal weakness. The conquest of NCR will establish a new order, akin to the Roman Empire, complete with the transformation of the Legion from a marauding army into a domestic military force.[Non-game 3][Non-game 4][Non-game 5]
This opposition is based on a loose interpretation of Hegelian dialectics, where the thesis (NCR) and the antithesis (Caesar's Legion) will inevitably form a synthesis at the resolution of the conflict, eliminating flaws and leaving a new quality, with common elements and ideas. He likens the situation between the NCR and the Legion to the transformation of the ancient Roman Republic into the Roman Empire.
The Legion employs a very strict hierarchy and clear division of roles between the sexes. Legionaries are the main fighting force of the Legion, composed of able-bodied men enslaved by the Legion or born into it. They have only one purpose: to fight for Caesar until they fall in battle. This principle is imprinted into each legionary during his reconditioning or upbringing (for those born into slavery), creating fanatically loyal soldiers. Unlike the Roman Empire, experience and veteran status have no bearing on a legionary's position. While they receive better equipment as they advance, this is solely for the purpose of accomplishing more dangerous and complex tasks, with much smaller tolerance for failure. They have no personal freedoms or rights.[Non-game 6] Their only real choice is where and when they die for Caesar, to whom they are disposable tools, discarded the moment they stop fulfilling their purpose.[Non-game 7][Non-game 8]
Women are expressly forbidden from fighting and act as support corps. They are caretakers, healers, midwives, and breeders, fulfilling roles essential to maintaining the Legion's continuous campaign of expansion. Of particular note are the priestesses, who raise children taken from their parents and raise them in keeping with Caesar's doctrine.[Non-game 9]
While some members of the Legion express condescending or misogynistic opinions of women and their non-combat roles, the sexist segregation of genders in the Legion is not based on prejudice, but the principle of minimax. Caesar strictly divides the duties between the sexes in order to fully utilize their potential and optimize the Legion's might. By forbidding women from engaging in combat, he increases the likelihood of their bearing of children, especially necessary due to the high infant mortality resulting from the low level of medical care.[Non-game 10] Population growth is required for expansion, providing a greater number of warriors to use in military campaigns. Caesar himself is not particularly prejudiced against any sex, or rather, treats them both instrumentally, like pawns on a chessboard.
It is unclear how the Legion views cannibalism, but it does not dissuade Caesar from working with members of the White Glove Society to further his goals. It is also believed some NCR citizens that those in the Legion practice cannibalism.
Non-enslaved people living under the Legion are primarily inhabitants of non-tribal communities that existed before the rise of the Legion and have been left free, as subjects. Instead of enslaving skilled people and cutting into their power base, the Legion opts to enslave tribes (in areas they dominate, such as Arizona and New Mexico). In certain cases, within active war zones like the Mojave or NCR-controlled territories, the Legion will make an exception and enslave non-tribal persons.[Non-game 12]
Those who escape this fate and become subjects enjoy superior stability and security, thanks to the Legion's governance. People who live in Legion towns enjoy a stable, consistent flow of electricity and water, a steady and ample food supply, and very low crime and corruption levels. They enjoy safe and productive lives with one caveat: never disobey or disturb the Legion. Caesar's men only ask once and the order has to be carried out without question, even if it means resettling fifty miles away at a moment's notice. This generally means that Legion subjects have little if any, political freedom, rights, or say in what happens to their communities.[Non-game 13] However, if one keeps quiet, goes about their business and fulfills the rare request the Legion has, then Caesar is a peaceful and caring lord.[Non-game 14] Many people don't consider Legion rule to be a problem, as even before Caesar's rise, they had little say in the chaotic wastes.[Non-game 15]
Legion territories are also very profitable for traders. Traders can travel on their own without guards most of the time in Legion lands, as all bandits were either ruthlessly exterminated or chased off. Coupled with the absence of heavy NCR taxation out in the frontier, many traders stick to Legion lands for regular trading, though some cross the river to trade with the NCR from time to time, and the Legion apparently does not try preventing them from doing so. The Legion holds firm to their ideology against drugs and alcohol, punishing those they capture with the illicit substances severely.
Slaves and outsiders
Anyone outside the Legion ranks or under their rule is considered to be "dissolute" or are called "profligates," referring to those lacking morals. Freshly caught humans are called "captures" and are considered the lowest of the low. Their only right is to be tested as a slave. If they do not meet the requirements, they are killed.
Slaves are one step above captures and consist of captured humans unfit for combat duty as a legionary. They are expected to adhere to the virtues of a slave (honestas, industria, prudentia - honesty, industry, and prudence) and follow their master's orders without question. They are given a new name and wear rags with a bright red X painted over the chest. Some captures and slaves are forced to wear slave collars to ensure their docility.
Slavery is managed by the Consul Officiorum ab Famulatus. Consul Officiorum typically acts through his representatives or administrators, who handle sales, bargainining, and issuing legal documents, such as bills of sale. The Legion treats documentation with exceptional care, especially when pregnant women are concerned: Slavers may receive subsequent payments if the child is born.
The vocabulary of Legion members is a mixture of Latin and English. There was no soft ⟨c⟩ in classical Latin, where it was always pronounced as /k/, such as in their pronunciation of Caesar's name as /ˈkaisar/. Individuals outside of the Legion generally use the Modern English pronunciation of /ˈsiːzər/. Legion members are fastidious about classical Latin pronunciations, including the /v/ to (w) phonology, heard in the greeting "ave" (hail) as "ah-wey" or in how Vulpes Inculta introduces himself, pronouncing his first name as "wool-pes." Those outside of the Legion that have come in contact with them may use the pronunciations interchangeably. Legion members are called "legionaries" (as opposed to "legionnaires," which is a modern phrase used by the French Foreign Legion. Those who are liked by the Legion are called "amicus," Latin for comrade/friend.
Caesar's Legion uses two forms of currency which were also used in Roman times. They are minted by the Legion from scavenged silver and gold, with each coin bearing the profile of Caesar.[Non-game 16]
Despite Caesar's poor relations with the other factions in New Vegas, Legion currency is still accepted as payment in the Mojave Wasteland, owing to the high level of trade with the Legion and the safety of its territory for caravans. The exchange rate is 4 bottle caps to 1 denarius, and 100 bottle caps to 1 aureus.
The denarius (silver), which bears an image of a younger Caesar on the obverse and Caesar, Joshua Graham and Bill Calhoun on the reverse. The inscriptions are in Latin, "Caesar Dictator" meaning "Dictator Caesar" or "Absolute Ruler Caesar" on the front and "Magnum Chasma" meaning "Great Abyss" or "Great Fissure" on the back, referring to the Grand Canyon. The symbolism is simple - the denarius commemorates young Caesar's journey to the Canyon and his first victories as a dictator of the Grand Canyon tribes.
The aureus (gold), which bears the portrait of the older Caesar on one side and the symbol of the 10th Legion (the bull) on the other. The inscriptions are in Latin, "Aeternit Imperi" meaning "For the eternity of the empire" on the front and "Pax Per Bellum" meaning "Peace through War" on the back.
The Legion enforces the Cult of Mars, a pseudo-Roman neopagan-based cult of personality focused on worshiping Caesar as the Son of Mars, as the state religion. It began in 2250 when Caesar declared himself the Son of Mars, ordered by Mars to conquer all of Earth. To facilitate this conquest, Mars cleansed the Earth with fire, bringing humans to their lowest ebb. Caesar's divine duty is to deliver the wasteland from chaos and barbarism. Caesar's divine status allows him, in the minds of the Legion, to demand servitude from everyone. The general rule is that obeying and following him is to follow the will of Mars. By extension, disobedience is synonymous with condemning oneself to death.
The religion is strictly enforced. To prevent dissent, children of slaves are removed from their families and indoctrinated by priestesses of Mars. The appearance of divinity is maintained through enforced ignorance. Legionaries are taught to believe (or made to) that all of the customs enforced by Caesar were dictated to him by Mars himself.
While to most this comes with no problems, the education of the average wastelander being what it is, Caesar truly fears the educated men, most importantly the Followers of the Apocalypse. To prevent his grand plagiarism from being discovered, the standing order is to kill Followers on sight or deliver them (and any other learned captures) to Legion interrogators. Those that make the mistake of speaking out about this end up as severed heads on spikes. In addition to Caesar, Mars also appears to be worshiped by legionaries, although there is no mention of the other Roman gods.
Caesar has patterned his slave army after the post-Marian reform Roman Imperial Legions. What follows is a breakdown of the organization of the Legion.
- Caesar's Legion: The entire army, led by Caesar (political leader) and a favored legate (military commander).
- The Legion is divided into cohorts of 480 men, which are divided into:
- Eight centuriae of 60 men,[Non-game 17] each led by a centurion, which divide into:
- Ten contubernia, each led by a decanus. The contubernium is the squad-level unit of organization and the usual size of a task force tasked with skirmishes or harassing larger groups of opponents.
One feature of the Legion is that the rank is determined by experience and merit in combat. The least seasoned legionaries (equivalent to pre-Marian hastati or post-Marian auxiliary skirmishers) are typically fielded first during a battle, allowing them to prove their mettle in combat. Those who survive and prove themselves on the battlefield become prime legionaries (equivalent to the pre-Marian principes), eligible for command as a decanus and deployment as second-wave attacks.
The top ranks of the legions are occupied by veterans (equivalent to pre-Marian triarii), who form the third wave and rear guard. These elite troops are deployed once the first two waves fail to achieve their objectives, allowing the Legion to field its most powerful, fresh troops against a weakened, tired enemy.
Veterans who prove themselves as leaders may be eligible for centurion status, becoming the deadliest members of the legion and its most skilled commanders. Each has reached their rank through their battlefield accomplishments and their armor reflects that fact - it is made up of trophies taken from defeated enemies. However, they rarely enter the battlefield, as they are few in number and possess valuable leadership skills, essential to maintaining unit cohesion.
The Legion has special postings and branches in addition to regular military ranks. The vexillarius (standard-bearer) carries the Legion's vexillium (banner or flag) into battle and serves as a rallying point for other legionaries. The frumentarii and speculatores are the Legion's special forces, tasked with infiltration, subterfuge, recon, and other essential tasks, both of which have special training that legionaries who show promise in such matter can participate in. The praetorians are an elite unit of bodyguard hand-picked by Caesar to protect him and the legates.
The Legion invests much of its time and effort into hardening its soldiers into some of the most capable combatants the wasteland has ever seen. The Legion draws its manpower from the dozens of assimilated tribes that it has conquered over the years and any male children given birth to in the Legion. The physical conditioning regimen is brutal and extremely demanding, on par with the NCR Rangers. Legionaries are uniformly fast, strong, and extremely dangerous. They can run half again as fast as the best of NCR troops and are capable of closing distances with frightening speed. Developing resistance to pain is also an integral part of the training, usually carried out via brutal hand-to-hand combat and melee weapons exercises.
Even more impressive than their physical traits is their discipline. Rank and file legionaries are trained to not have to think for themselves, to have conflict removed from their minds. The resulting discipline in the field is beyond the ken of their closest competitor, the NCR, as the legionaries will perform any order given by their superiors and will not back down until they are dead or recalled by their commanders. If training fails, fear will motivate legionaries to succeed. Legionaries who fail or disobey orders end up crucified or torn apart in front of Caesar. In extreme cases, the Legate may order decimation, where a tenth of the unit's troops are beaten to death by the other nine-tenths, as an extreme disciplinary action.
These traits make them ferocious close-quarters combatants, where they have few equals. NCR soldiers are generally advised to take down legionaries at long range before they can engage them in close combat. Of course, while the standard kit is light armor and a melee weapon, the Legion is a pragmatic fighting force. Legionaries also receive training in ranged combat and firearms are not uncommon, though most are in poor condition. Legionaries are authorized to and will scavenge better weapons from fallen enemies and use them in combat. As such, the NCR orders troops to destroy their weapons (eg. by throwing them over the edge of Hoover Dam) if fatally wounded, to avoid bolstering the firepower of the legionaries. Higher ranking legionaries, like veterans and centurions, are commonly provided with high quality, well maintained firearms, like the anti-materiel rifle or 12.7mm submachine gun, which they can use with frightening efficiency.
The result is a well rounded military force that is capable of fighting on all distances, using all types of weapons, and particularly adept at taking enemy fortifications and bases. Of course, the Legion has weak sides. The extreme discipline and obedience of the lower ranks require a strong chain of command to exist, to guide the soldiers on the field of battle. Without decani and centurions, the legionaries will become a disorganized mass, easy to rout and destroy. This reliance on veterans has been exploited to great effect by Chief Hanlon during the First Battle of Hoover Dam. By eliminating officers, the Legion's forces were easily drawn into a trap at Boulder City and destroyed.
The Legion employs an organized method of warfare. In larger battles, legionaries are deployed in waves, with recruits upfront, prime soldiers behind them, and veterans, the old guard, bringing up the rear. The enemy wears himself out dealing with the first two waves, with the veterans mopping up any remaining resistance when their turn comes. This is not an omnipresent, cardinal rule, however: Caesar can adapt and run any mix of legionaries as skirmishes, whilst retaining order in the ranks.
Smaller Legion raids typically involve suddenly attacking, killing everyone (sometimes taking slaves), and leaving quickly. As Legate Lanius states, their forces are much better suited at taking positions than holding them due to their up-close style of fighting. Furthermore, legionaries will deliberately commit atrocities to terrorize their enemies and break their morale. On occasion, they are known to use children as traps and soldiers, and rape to terrorize civilian populations. The Legion also seeks to demoralize opposing armies before the battle even begins by torturing prisoners in sight of the army's position.
Relations with the outside
The Legion's aim is to dominate the known world and unite it under its banner. In 2281, it is locked in conflict with the New California Republic at the Colorado River. Tribes that weren't pressed into it are also openly hostile to the Legion, fearing that they too will become victims of its campaign of conquest, as even with guarantees of safety and independence, Caesar has gone against his word and assimilated tribes he previously promised he'd leave alone. This causes even ruthless organizations like the Van Graffs to oppose the Legion in addition to organizations like the Desert Rangers. However, while many civilized groups dislike the Legion's ways, they have great success in assimilating tribal groups. Tribals, with their general respect for power over anything else, typically side with the Legion over the NCR. The White Legs are firm allies of the Legion and are used as proxies for the Legion in the war for Zion. In 2281, after suffering an incredibly devastating defeat at Hoover Dam, the Legion has resorted to finding ways to gain the allegiance of local factions so that they can sow the seeds of their enemy's demise closer to home. They have allied with the Great Khans and Omertas and plan to use them to aid their plans in the Mojave before assimilating or exterminating them.
Dale Barton often prefers to trade in Legion territories, saying that he finds it cheaper as he doesn't have to hire protection on most occasions, nor does he have to pay extortionate taxes, due to the effectiveness of Legion suppression of raiders and wasteland creatures. Rose of Sharon Cassidy admits that caravan life would be much easier if the Legion controlled the roadways instead of the NCR, as the Legion does not require the same exorbitant tolls and simultaneously provides consistent and effective protection of routes in their territory. She states that for the same reasons caravans side with the Legion, if towns could be provided the same level of security, they would likewise be tempted to capitulate.
What the Legion lacks in technological prowess it makes up for in resourcefulness. Combat gear is built with a focus on reliability and ease of manufacture, standardized across the Legion. Furthermore, the Legion is easily capable of erecting large fortifications (e.g. the Fortification Hill encampment), establish supply chains for its massive army, and, as mentioned above, mass-produce standardized weapons and armor for its legionaries. Caesar firmly believes that reliance on technology weakens humans, and was partially responsible for the Great War. The Legion espouses martial prowess and individual fitness to reduce the need for technologically advanced weapons. The technological refinement of an individual legionary's gear is directly tied to his status. Lower ranks typically use either simple firearms (typically revolvers or lever-action rifles), power fists, or melee weapons in the form of machetes and throwing spears, crafted from scavenged materials that mimic the ancient Roman short sword (gladius) and javelin (pilum). Higher ranks, such as prime legionaries, decani, and centurions have access to superior weapons, such as anti-materiel rifles, marksman carbines, and super sledges. The personal guards of Caesar themselves are equipped with high tech ballistic fists to complement their martial prowess. The Legion's lack of technical expertise means that many legionaries are untrained in the use of certain weapons, with some being unaware that land mines can even be disarmed.
While no Legion member wields energy weapons, they show interest in purchasing them from the Van Graffs. The Legion is also never shown using power armor, though pieces of what appears to be T-45 power armor are used in centurion armor. The Legion has a large number of Stealth Boys. These Stealth Boys are never seen used by Legion soldiers in the Mojave but are used by the Legion at Dry Wells and the Legion marked men in the Divide. A high reputation with the Legion will lead to a steady cache of Stealth Boys for the Courier.
All troops wear standardized Legion armor, mimicking the Roman lorica hamata or lorica segmentata, created from pre-War sports gear (mostly if not exclusively American football gear, salvaged from the University of Arizona)[Non-game 18] and armored with metal plates, including the helmet. The gear is worn over a tunic. Centurions make their own armor, crafted from elements of body armor scavenged from felled foes.
The only absolute opposition to technology is in robotics. Caesar dislikes the thought of having robots win a war fought by men, as it defeats the need for a sacrifice for the greater good. Beyond that, the Legion is opportunistic and will use any kind of technology to further its goals, whether it be using a howitzer to suppress NCR snipers or occupying HELIOS One after the Courier wipes the NCR out with Archimedes I. Radios are frequently used, but overall the Legion opts for devices that use no power to increase reliability. The Legion does not need or truly desire power sources like the NCR, but at no point opposes its usage as it does with chems, alcohol, and combat robots.
Interactions with the player character
- Siding with the Legion can make keeping companions very difficult while following the main questline, and most human companions will likely abandon the player character over time. Veronica Santangelo will likely leave when the Brotherhood bunker is destroyed, Craig Boone will leave when one kills several NCR soldiers, and Arcade Gannon will leave when the Courier's reputation with the Legion rises too high. Rose of Sharon Cassidy allows the player character to work with the Legion despite her dislike for them, and Raul Tejada is somewhat supportive due to their ability to provide security. It is possible to maintain all companions through a mix of not speaking to Gannon, not traveling with Boone while killing NCR soldiers, and for Veronica, destroying the bunker when she is not present.
- Although initially neutral towards the player character, Legion patrols in the Mojave Wasteland are openly hostile towards most travelers, including prospectors and traveling merchants, and will attack them on sight.
- A female Courier will not be allowed to fight in the arena, regardless of reputation or progress in the game. An exception is made, should the female Courier choose to fight Benny to the death during Render Unto Caesar.
- Many characters make comments about the Legion's future leadership, in that without Caesar, the Legion will fall to in-fighting without him, including Mr. House, Marcus, and Joshua Graham.
Fallout: New Vegas endings
Narrated by Ron Perlman
|#||Slide||Voice-over narration||In-game condition|
|1||Caesar entered The Strip as though it was his Triumph. The Legion pushed the NCR out of New Vegas entirely, driving them back to the Mojave Outpost. The Legion occupied all major locations, enslaving much of the population and peacefully lording over the rest. Under the Legion's banner, civilization - unforgiving as it was - finally came to the Mojave Wasteland.||Do not allow Caesar to die in Et Tumor, Brute?, complete the endgame quest Veni, Vidi, Vici for Caesar's Legion.|
|2||The Legate is crowned as the new Caesar. He entered The Strip as though it was a military target, destroying anyone who resisted him. The Legion brutally occupied all major locations, killing and enslaving a large amount of the population. Under the Legion's banner, civilization - savage as it was - finally came to the Mojave Wasteland.||Allow Caesar to die in Et Tumor, Brute?, complete the endgame quest Veni, Vidi, Vici for Caesar's Legion.|
Notable members (by rank)
- Praetorian guard
- Vulpes Inculta
- Cato Hostilius
- Ronald Curtis (code name "Picus")
- Strange man
- Disguised frumentarius
- Ulysses (formerly)
Behind the scenes
|Caesar's politics, views, and opinions|
“On a related note, a lot of folks have asked me about the Legion in Fallout: New Vegas and why they aren't more fully fleshed out. The real answer is "time", and I would have liked to have more locations, characters, and quests for the Legion. Even so, the Legion was always intended to be a faction that was initially presented as terrible, much like the NCR is initially presented as heroic, with revelations over the course of the story causing you to question that initial impression in a larger context. Caesar shows a very warped plan for how the Legion can bring order to the Mojave, and there are suggestions that regions under Legion control do enjoy a sort of "Pax Romana", but there isn't enough concrete evidence for the player to directly witness to really sell it. Even so, under the most ideal of portrayals, it was never my intention for the Legion to become a heroic faction. Their methods and approach would have always been unflinchingly brutal, with proven results and a clear plan to reproduce that success being the only potentially redeeming qualities of the group.”— Twofold Silence, Joshua Sawyer's blog
“I think this is a reasonable point to argue, but what Machiavelli wrote about is not directly comparable to what the Legion is. Machiavelli wrote (mostly) about princedoms and republics. The Legion isn't structured at all like a republic -- not like a Renaissance Italian republic nor like the Roman Republic -- and not like a princedom, either. Caesar also takes terrible steps to annihilate sense of tribe and family -- e.g. Legionaries have sex with many captive women, children of those unions are not raised by any Legionary who had sex with the mother, nor by the mother herself. Caesar does everything he can to prevent anyone having a sense of belonging to anything other than the Legion.
I think it's conceivable that even in that environment, non-Legionary slaves could unite to try to overthrow Caesar, but I disagree that it's guaranteed success simply through numbers.
In Roman Britain, Suetonius Paulinus (the Roman governor) stripped Boudicca of her right to rule the Iceni, had her beaten and her daughters raped for protesting, then took off to wage war in Wales. While he was gone, she and her tribe sacked Londinium, killed tens of thousands, and were subsequently annihilated by the Roman legions when they returned -- despite the Iceni outnumbering Paulinus' forces significantly. I think it's more likely that Legionaries would internally decide to get rid of Caesar (much like the historical Praetorian Guard did on several occasions), but I think this would require a mindset and perspective that is alien to most Legionaries.”
“Breeding issues are pretty huge in cultures that took a big step back from infant mortality progress made in the last 100-200 years. Prior to the last few centuries, infant mortality was often around 50%-ish. Child mortality (prior to age 12) was about 60%. Those are pretty awful odds of reaching adulthood. Remember that Caesar's Legion is basically a roving army that continually breaks down and absorbs tribes that it conquers. That can only go on for so long, and Legionaries who are indoctrinated from birth are even more loyal than adolescents who are integrated. Breeding new generations of Legionaries is vital for the Legion's continued existence. Even though breeding is incredibly important in the Legion, there isn't any concept of family outside of the Legion's structure. All of the places where the player encounters the Legion are forward camps where direct military service is given the most weight and is of the most immediate importance. Because only males are involved in that service, they look down upon females even though it's incredibly short-sighted.”— Joshua Sawyer's Formspring answers
“Caesar takes whatever pieces of history he finds useful and disregards things he doesn't find useful. He has specific goals and uses history as a tool to meet those goals. When history doesn't help him, he doesn't use it. Even things like a reluctance to use advanced technology have more to do with his desire to keep the Legion ignorant/dependent on him than with anything 'historical'.
Control is very important to him, even if it means that the people who serve him lack any of the medical knowledge necessary to help diagnose or treat his problems. It's very important for Caesar to maintain that the Legion is different. It is physically different, has different values, and different priorities. When Romans were wearing pants, they thought people wearing skirts were barbarians. When Romans wore togas, they thought people wearing pants were barbarians. People on the other side of that river wear pants. Our identity is good, your identity is bad.
Clearly there are many things Caesar does that work against his goals, or choices he made to emphasize one goal over a conflicting goal and it resulted in problems. But it's important to understand that Caesar calls the shots in the Legion. And when Caesar's not around, it's someone following his lead. Whether that's Lanius or Joshua Graham, there's not going to be a fun party when one of these guys rolls into your town.
Events in the vein of Tamerlane and Simon de Montfort are going to happen.
Events that culminate in pyramids of human heads, mass blindings, and burning a cathedral down with an entire congregation inside. Conquered men, women, children, elderly people -- they don't spontaneously rise up and try to kill people who abuse and oppress them. Most people are not heroic. Most people are easily terrified, especially once they have already been placed in subjugated position. And if they are heroic, they usually die heroic deaths, alone.
It continues to happen all over the world. Right now, somewhere, someone is being beaten and horribly abused and even if given the opportunity to strike back at the person doing the abuse, they won't take it. In Roman Britain, the tribes didn't stage a successful coup against the occupying forces even when given ample opportunity and more than enough reason to unite. On three separate occasions, the governor of Britain broke off from the empire. Even in a state of Roman civil war, the tribes were unable to eject the Romans.
The one very notable case of rebellion was during Suetonius Paulinus' campaign in what is now Wales. The leader of the Iceni, Boudica, was beaten and her daughters were raped because Boudica challenged the transition of her late husband's authority to the Roman governor (Paulinus). Only with Londinium essentially vacated of military forces did the Iceni and Trinovantes dare to attack. They were successful in causing a huge amount of civilian damage, but in the end, Paulinus' troops rolled over the Iceni and routed them. The nearby Brigantes provided essentially no help to the Iceni and at least one source suggests Boudica may have even been poisoned by the Brigantes' queen. Someone mentioned Nero earlier; it's worth noting that all of this happened under Nero's rule and Rome still easily held Britain despite Nero's general lack of... being good as an emperor. This pattern can be found a lot in history. It's rare for spontaneous uprisings to happen against conquerors. Or rather, it's more appropriate to say that it is extremely common for abusive occupation to go effectively uncontested for years, decades, or even centuries.”— Joshua Sawyer on the Bethesda forums
“Whether you think it's a 'legit' reason or not, it's actually to ensure that the Legion breeds as many new legionaries as it can at the fastest possible rate. The way it is communicated in game often comes across as 'traditionally' sexist instead of 'follow these gender roles for army min-maxing'.”
“I've never thought of Caesar's or the Legion's activities as 'edgy'. For their own purposes, they engage in a variety of horrible practices that others have engaged in throughout history. I'm sure individual players might want to engage in ranking atrocities -- something I've never really found was productive in discussions about history -- but Caesar and his crew in the same league as other brutal warlords. He was inspired (on our end) by people like Charles Taylor, Timur, and Simon de Montfort (the crusader). 'Caesar' is a persona he adopted, but he effectively operates as a warlord with no regard for individual human lives outside of how he can use them.”
“no ghouls or supermutants in ceasars legion....explain
Joshua Sawyer: It's hard to brainwash people who have been alive for a hundred+ years. More importantly, non-feral ghouls and SMs are also a tiny fragment of the population. Caesar doesn't really consider them to be that relevant in the overall struggle for the Mojave.”— Joshua Sawyer's Formspring answers
“I think people would have responded better to the Legion if they were developed more. Also, I've said this before, but the Legion characters in the Fort are so completely mega misogynistic that it makes it hard to... [laughter] They weren't really intended to be that misogynistic, in terms of overtly, like 'women - grr!' But that's how they wound up, so...”— Joshua Sawyer
“The thing is, I don't think it really made sense for those characters to be as... like yes, so Caesar's whole idea behind women and their role in the world and the Legion isn't because he hated them, it was strictly utilitarian without any concern for the welfare of the individual people involved. It makes sense, because he wants more Legionaries. That's it. He wants more Legionares. He wants women to breed more Legionaries. Period. But for the rank-and-file guys to be like 'women - grr!' It didn't really make sense. I don't think. So, like, being misogynistic, yes, in the way that Caesar was, but to be like 'I hate 'em!', I just didn't... they were too aggressively hateful of women as opposed to casually unconcerned with their wishes or welfare, which is more what Caesar had.”— Joshua Sawyer
“Yeah, Caesar's Legion is appropriating symbols. It is not literally like the Roman Legion, it's not literally like the Roman Republic, or the Roman Empire. It is using symbols for a purpose, for Caesar's purpose.”— Joshua Sawyer
|Caesar's Legion's approach to Latin|
“The pronunciation of Latin in the game is based on classical, not ecclesiastic, rules of pronunciation. While it is difficult for us to know how Latin was actually pronounced in the time of Julius Caesar, classical pronunciation assumes that the presence or absence of certain letter/sound combinations in the surviving languages of Romanized cultures can inform our understanding. The most obvious example is the name 'Caesar' itself, one of the earliest Latin loan words to Germanic languages, which became 'Kaiser'. Another is a word Caesar himself used, 'Celtæ'. Greek historians used the word 'Κελτοί', and there's not a lot of debate over how that's pronounced. Just as Italian doesn't follow Latin pronunciation (and in fact pretty much abandoned case, which is an enormous part of Latin -- thanks Jabby), Old French and Late Latin softened many of the Latin consonants before they entered English. Thus, we have people hissing at each other over the pronunciation of 'Celt' and 'celtic': Anglicized Latin words passed to us through Old French from the days of the Roman Republic, where they had been borrowed from a Greek word that was likely a self-identifying term for a tribe on the Iberian peninsula. Inappropriately, we almost always use those terms to refer to Irish people and things. Anyhoo, generally speaking, if you find an academic textbook on Latin pronunciation these days, it's going to follow classical rules. If you're taught Latin through your local church, you may very well learn Italianate/ecclesiastic rules. Caesar learned from academic textbooks, so he passed on that tradition.”— Joshua Sawyer on the Bethesda forums
“Edward Sallow had a FotA education with all of their information resources at his disposal. All it takes is the first chapter of Wheelock's (or equivalent) and you've got pretty much all the rules for pronouncing classical Latin. How the Legion pronounces 'Caesar' is how Edward Sallow told them to pronounce it. The rest of the F:NV world pronounces 'Caesar' the way most people in Pre-War America would have pronounced it.”
“When I finally did a Legion in NV, I was actually pretty amazed with Caesar's dialog, and he kind of became one of my favorite villains ever. There was such a nuance to his blatant hypocrisy. He's not teaching what he believes in, he's teaching what he thinks will work. I can't think of any other villain in fiction quite like him. If you were involved in his writing, was there any particular inspiration for this?
Most of the basic character design was mine, but John Gonzalez did all of the actual character writing.
Some of this info is on the various wikis, but I took inspiration from both Mr. Kurtz/Colonel Kurtz (Heart of Darkness/Apocalypse Now) and Charles Taylor of Liberia. I came up with the idea of Caesar using the Hegelian dialectic as a way of explaining his vision for the future of the Mojave Wasteland.
Edward Sallow was an extremely intelligent, well-educated man captured by an alien culture and he did what he needed to not only to survive, but to dominate that culture and eventually become its leader. At the point when the Courier encounters him, Caesar’s morality is completely untethered from the culture he grew up in. He’s lived for years in a society that he rules with absolute power and authority, which he designed as he saw fit.”— Joshua Sawyer on Tumblr
“'How similar is Caesar's fort to an ancient Roman fort?' I don't think it is very. If it is, it's completely coincidental.”— Joshua Sawyer
|Caesar's Legion in Van Buren|
“In the test pen-and-paper campaign run by Chris Avellone, the first fringe unit of Caesar's Legion was planned to appear as a hostile enemy in the Circle Junction train yards. Furthermore, the Daughters of Hecate and Caesar’s Legion was thought as the female and male polar opposites, which was supposed to allow the player, depending on gender, to rule either one and use them to build an army, much like in the movie The Postman.”
“The Caesar's Legion concept was created by Chris Avellone during pre-production for Black Isle's canceled Fallout 3. J.E. Sawyer then elaborated on the concept, stating, "One of the few big things I did on Van Buren was taking an organization Chris invented and changing it (perhaps mangling it in the process) into a neo-Roman slavers' legion with all the weird titles, makeshift costumes, and traditions of that group."”— Legion concept art
“Sharptooth, a member of Hangdog tribe, was planned to be a spy for Caesar's Legion, reporting to their agents in Denver; however, this was only because Caesar holds Sharptooth's sister as a slave. If this became known, the other Hangdogs would demand to banish him and his family to the wasteland. Bares His Teeth would have no qualms about doing this. The faction was originally planned to play a much bigger role in Van Buren but their role was scaled back significantly as the development team realized the game and its story had gotten too big.”— No Mutants Allowed posts on Van Buren
“Before being merged by designers with the Blackfoot tribe, Hangdog's tribe could be planned to live in northeastern Colorado, near Denver (Van Buren)”— Denver, dialogue files of the Van Buren tech demo, crossed off of Blackfoot design document
- J.E. Sawyer (source): "Edward Sallow created Caesar's Legion as an imitation of the Roman Legion, but without any of the Roman society that supported the Roman Legion. I've written this before, but there are no optimates, no populares, no plebes, no equestrians, no patricians, no senate, no Rome. There's no right to private property (within the Legion itself). There's no civil law. There aren't even the ceremonial trappings of Roman society. Legates don't receive triumphs following a victory. No one in the Legion retires to a villa in Sedona.
It's essentially a Roman legion with only the very top commander having any connection to the "source" culture, the rest being indoctrinated conscripts from cultures that were honestly less well-developed than anything in Gaul. Gauls are pretty sophisticated compared to the 80+ tribes. Gauls could read the Latin or Greek alphabets (Gallic language, obviously), had extensive permanent settlements, roads, calendars, mines, and a whole load of poo poo that groups like the Blackfoots never had.
What Caesar gave to those tribes was order, discipline, an end to internecine tribal violence (eventually), common language, and a common culture that was not rooted in any of their parent cultures. The price was extreme brutality, an enormous loss of life and individual culture, the complete dissolution of anything resembling a traditional family, and the indoctrination of fascist values.
Caesar's Legion isn't the Roman Empire or the Roman Republic. It isn't even the Roman Legion. It's a slave army with trappings of foreign-conscripted Roman legionaries during the late empire. All military, no civilian, and with none of the supporting civilian culture."
- Joshua Sawyer on Formspring May 12, 2012
- J.E Sawyer: "Yes, he does suggest that. He says that when the Legion dominates NCR, it will be akin to the rise of the Roman Empire following the republic. The Legion will become, if not a "peace" force, a domestic army instead of a roving war band, and the NCR's corruption will be swept away along with the government. Arcade isn't exaggerating when he suggests that Caesar views the Colorado River as his Rubicon. It's true that Caesar doesn't say anything explicitly about the role of women, but Caesar's view of women is different from most of the legionaries. As I wrote above, the Legion is at war, and he views the use of women for military purposes as a bad strategic choice when he could be using them to create more legionaries."
- J.E Sawyer (Regarding Caesar's plans): "Yes, he views the Colorado River as the Rubicon and the NCR as the corrupt Roman Republic waiting to be torn down via military occupation. This is literally exactly what Julius Caesar did with Legio XIII Gemina. Other things Julius Caesar did: not leave a clear line of succession, resulting in the early fracture and borderline collapse of the nascent Roman Empire he created."
- J.E Sawyer: "In Caesar's view, NCR's problems have to do with the corruption of its government and what he sees as inherent flaws in NCR's republican system. All of the strategies he uses to assemble the Legion and march on NCR are means to an end, not social end goals themselves. Caesar sees NCR as Rome and his role in reforming it as Julius Caesar's role in reforming the republic (by turning it into a dictatorship). When Julius Caesar crossed the Rubicon and returned to Rome, his legion didn't rape and enslave their way through the city. However, rape and enslavement were common in outer territories of the Roman Empire and were regularly used as tools of intimidation and labor. When Arcade "jokes" that Caesar thinks that the Colorado River is the Rubicon, he's not far from the truth."
- Joshua Sawyer on Formspring, responded to TraderTanger on October 25, 2011: "On Caesar- If he is only interested in protecting women from war, why are they not given the same personal freedom as soldiers? It's one thing to not allow them to serve out of preservation, but EVERYTHING points to all Femalegionares being slaves.(cont.)"
"Soldiers in Caesar's Legion don't have personal freedom. They "get" to fight and die for Caesar. It's not a volunteer military, though many legionaries are born or raised into it, so they are effectively brainwashed."
Note: http://spring.me/JESawyer/q/253210513125676636 This was originally on Formspring but it was not able to be archived before it disappeared. It was found on rpgcodex.net on 1/29/20, it was saved by a diligent internet archivist/follower. Thank you for saving these!
- Joshua Sawyer on Formspring October 28, 2011: "Sawyer, it's not that childbirth is lowly, it's that being *raped* against your will and forced to carry children is hardly good times. + a pacifist stance doesn't translate well into a setting for a FPS where every level brings shiny new killing methods.
I never said it's "good times". What I object to is elevating slave legionaries to the level of (patrician) Roman legionaries in an effort to emphasize how women alone have it bad and men are living the high life. They both have crappy lives, neither have a choice in the matter, and I'm not particularly interested in weighing the depths of misery by sex."
- October 28, 2011: "One token Nazi medal for pure aryan mothers hardly balances the the vast, VAST majority of male-dominated civilizations throughout history that have treated women as sub-human or property. Men in the Legion have power, women don't have any.
Why are people so obsessed with the "balance" between the different gendered roles under the Legion? I've never said it's balanced. But there is very clearly a trend among people questioning the Legion to project the concept of military service as a noble endeavor (for which one is rewarded, no less) onto legionnaires when it's never presented in that way. They are slave soldiers. Service is not voluntary, they can't retire, there are no parades and pats on the back for them. They aren't Roman patrician officers who are going to retire to a Tuscan estate when they turn 50.
The only power that male legionaries have is to serve Caesar well enough to be promoted to a position of more responsibility. Nothing really comes with that additional responsibility other than increased scrutiny and better equipment (to match the increased danger).
Most of my commentary on this topic has been to highlight the following:
- Caesar's Legion is subdivided (by Caesar) based on gendered/sexed roles. These subdivisions are sexist (inherently), but they are neither misogynistic nor misandric.
- Legionaries under Caesar are not like Roman patrician officers. They are not part of a larger society that celebrates and rewards military service with things like conference of honorific titles, triumphs, etc. All legionaries are slave soldiers, period.
- The opinions of individual legionaries are not the opinions of Caesar. These individuals may make misogynistic comments, but those comments did not originate with Caesar, nor is there any reason to believe that he shares them, given his willingness to employ a female courier.
- Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition pp. 460-461: "True to Caesar"
- Joshua Sawyer on Forumspring February 8 2011: "What's the premise for Caesar's Legion being so sexist, esp. in a world where Ranger Stella can mangle bodies daily in the Arena? Is it just breeding issues? Cause even the abominably sexist Romans were not *that* sexist, and Caesar is a smart man.
Breeding issues are pretty huge in cultures that took a big step back from infant mortality progress made in the last 100-200 years. Prior to the last few centuries, infant mortality was often around 50%-ish. Child mortality (prior to age 12) was about 60%. Those are pretty awful odds of reaching adulthood.
Remember that Caesar's Legion is basically a roving army that continually breaks down and absorbs tribes that it conquers. That can only go on for so long, and Legionaries who are indoctrinated from birth are even more loyal than adolescents who are integrated. Breeding new generations of Legionaries is vital for the Legion's continued existence.
Even though breeding is incredibly important in the Legion, there isn't any concept of family outside of the Legion's structure. All of the places where the player encounters the Legion are forward camps where direct military service is given the most weight and is of the most immediate importance. Because only males are involved in that service, they look down upon females even though it's incredibly short-sighted."
- no ghouls or supermutants in ceasars legion....explain
Joshua Sawyer: It's hard to brainwash people who have been alive for a hundred+ years. More importantly, non-feral ghouls and SMs are also a tiny fragment of the population. Caesar doesn't really consider them to be that relevant in the overall struggle for the Mojave.
- Joshua Sawyer on Formspring May 12, 2012: "Even in ancient Rome's slave-based economy the majority of people weren't slaves. Is that the case with the Legion and is that what you wanted to show with additional Legion locations?
The additional Legion locations would have had more traveling non-Legion residents of Legion territories. The Fort and Cottonwood Cove made sense as heavy military outposts where the vast majority of the population consisted of soldiers and slaves. The other locations would have had more 'civilians'. It's not accurate to think of them as citizens of the Legion (the Legion is purely military), but as non-tribal people who live in areas under Legion control.
While Caesar intentionally enslaves NCR and Mojave residents in the war zone, most of the enslavement that happens in the east happens to tribals. As Raul indicates, there are non-tribal communities that came under Legion control a long time ago. The additional locations would have shown what life is like for those people.
The general tone would have been what you would expect from life under a stable military dictatorship facing no internal resistance: the majority of people enjoy safe and productive lives (more than they had prior to the Legion's arrival) but have no freedoms, rights, or say in what happens in their communities. Water and power flow consistently, food is adequate, travel is safe, and occasionally someone steps afoul of a legionary and gets his or her head cut off. If the Legion tells someone to do something, they only ask once -- even if that means an entire community has to pick up and move fifty miles away. Corruption within the Legion is rare and Caesar deals with it harshly (even by Legion standards).
In short, residents of Legion territories aren't really citizens and they aren't slaves, but they're also not free. People who keep their mouths shut, go about their business, and nod at the rare requests the Legion makes of them -- they can live very well. Many of them don't care at all that they don't have a say in what happens around them (mostly because they felt they never had a say in it before the Legion came, anyway)."
- Joshua Sawyer on Formspring May 12, 2012
- Joshua Sawyer on Formspring May 12, 2012
- Joshua Sawyer on Formspring May 12, 2012
- Joshua Sawyer on Something Awful Forums: "Gold and silver have low melting points. They don't need to mine for it if they find it in some other form."
- Accurate to the ancient Roman army as a centuriae consisted of 80 professional soldiers and 20 noncombatants.
- Fallout: New Vegas 10th Anniversary Charity Stream (reference starts at 5:05:37)
Joshua Sawyer: "'Where did the Legion find all the football equipment?' From the University of Arizona. I don't know if that's actually explicitly stated anywhere, but yes, they got it from... uh... they got it from the University of Arizona."