Camp McCarran, known before the War as McCarran International Airport, is a pre-War airport which serves as the headquarters for the New California Republic Army in the Mojave Wasteland in 2281. It is considered a close second to Hoover Dam in terms of strategic importance. It is located south of the Strip North Gate and southwest from NCR sharecropper farms.
Once the primary airport of Las Vegas, the McCarran International Airport featured a direct monorail connection to the Strip. At some point prior to 2281, large walls were placed around the perimeter, transecting the airport's runways. It subsequently became a hub of all NCR Army efforts, particularly the logistical aspects of troop allocation, supply distribution, and intel.[Non-canon 1]
Camp McCarran is the largest NCR military base in the New Vegas area and serves as the headquarters for NCR military operations in the Mojave region and as a center of logistics and information for NCR Army forces anywhere in Nevada. The base is constantly repelling the Fiends, a drug-crazed gang that operates in the area. It has been infiltrated by Caesar's Legion spies, according to captured Legion centurion Silus during the unmarked quest Silus Treatment. Other issues plaguing operations include broken-down cooking machinery in the mess hall, insufficient food, and the captured centurion who refuses to talk to NCR commanders.
The former civilian airport was chosen by the NCR for a military base because of the monorail to the Strip, for being an easily defensible location, and having easily utilized technology as well as fortifications that were built before the Great War. Mr. House agreed that NCR could establish a major military presence there as part of the New Vegas Treaty. McCarran includes a larger garrison than any other base in the area, except possibly Hoover Dam. Despite its high importance and large garrison, it is shorthanded due to constant skirmishes with the Fiends and troop redeployments.
The base commander is Colonel James Hsu, who also commands all NCR Army forces in the Mojave. General Lee Oliver, the NCR Army's leader, used to command the base personally, but he has relocated to Hoover Dam in anticipation of the coming battle with Caesar's Legion, leaving Hsu fully in command of the garrison.
The airport is mostly intact, having only suffered damage from lack of repair. The NCR has converted several of the guard posts into sniper nests, and the parking lot in the center into a barracks with sleeping, medical, supply storage, office, mess hall, and recreation tents set up, as well as firing ranges. Near the cargo terminal gates is a truck mechanic area.[Non-canon 1]
There are also several NCR supply trucks parked around the barracks tents and passenger airplanes near the control tower. The tents closest to the camp entrance are occupied by the NCR 1st Recon, while the rest of the tents are used by regular NCR soldiers. Some beds, such as those used by 1st Recon, may be used by the Courier without penalty.
If the Courier has enough positive reputation to use the NCR emergency radio, an NCR trooper or ranger standing outside the camp's entrance will assist the Courier. Speaking to the trooper or ranger will cause him/her to say "Trooper, ready to fight!" or "Ranger at the ready!" and they will become part of the party. If they die, a message is displayed on the screen, informing the player character of such.
The outside of the base is usually patrolled by groups of three NCR troopers on all sides of the complex, who will usually engage members of the Fiends. Typically, there are five of these groups. They respawn every three days. NCR troopers also use the control towers as sniper's nests, assisting or shooting at the player character, depending on their progress in the game or reputation at the time.
NCR patrols will progress as far as the hill behind Vault 34, a group of three can sometimes be seen standing around a fire barrel. NCR troops venture into Fiend territory to eradicate their presence, in turn, better securing the perimeter of the camp. Unmanned sandbag barricades stretch to the South Vegas ruins.
The Camp McCarran terminal building is very large and houses a science lab, an interrogation room, jail, and supply rooms as well as quarters and office space for senior NCR officers such as Colonel Hsu. Within the terminal is the Office of Science and Industry (or OSI) lab, where Dr. Thomas Hildern and Dr. Angela Williams can be found. To the west of the lab is the office of Captain Ronald Curtis.
Upstairs, the player character can find Lieutenant Carrie Boyd and the detention center on the right. The monorail to the Las Vegas Boulevard Station and New Vegas Strip is to the left. The pre-War monorail is still fully functional and allows quick and safe transport between the camp and The Strip. However, only military personnel and VIPs are allowed to use it. The Courier will be allowed to use the monorail if they wear an NCR uniform, are in the company of Craig Boone, or have a good reputation with the NCR.
The concourse that once provided passengers with access to airplanes before the Great War is now used as living quarters for NCR troopers. The concourse is a hexagon-shaped building, positioned between the terminal building and the supply shack. The area contains a dining area, medical station, and the trooper's bunk beds.
- La Longue Carabine - A unique version of the cowboy repeater can be found in Camp McCarran, carried by Corporal Sterling, who moves to Camp Forlorn Hope after Three-Card Bounty along with the rest of 1st Recon. Killing him for the rifle will forfeit the quests I Don't Hurt Anymore and Old School Ghoul. To gain this rifle without losing Karma, you can pickpocket the ammunition from him (it is all he carries) then fast travel to a different location, then return to find the rifle in his inventory.
- Cram Opener - A unique bladed gauntlet, carried by Little Buster, who leaves McCarran after the completion of Three-Card Bounty.
- This Machine - A unique battle rifle which can be obtained as a reward for the unmarked quest Dealing with Contreras.
- 227 bottle caps, spread throughout the terminal building and the concourse.
- Lab technician outfit - Worn by Dr. Kemp in the concourse.
- Two Ice cold Nuka-Colas - Both are located inside a chest refrigerator on the second floor of the terminal building near the jail cells.
- Two pieces of flint - On a table in the medical tent and the storage tent near a welding gun, only two instances of the item in-game.
- Classic Inspiration
- For Auld Lang Syne
- I Could Make You Care
- I Don't Hurt Anymore
- I Put a Spell on You
- The White Wash
- There Stands the Grass
- Three-Card Bounty
- You Can Depend on Me
- A Final Plan for Esteban
- Bounty Killer
- Dealing with Contreras
- Gland for Some Home Cooking
- Not Worth a Hill of Corn and Beans
- Poor Meat Never Makes Good Soup
- Rest and Resupply
- Silus Treatment
The garbage can by the baggage check-in station on the first floor within the terminal building can't be searched.
Camp McCarran appears only in Fallout: New Vegas.
Behind the scenes
- Camp McCarran is based on the real world location of the McCarran International Airport in the center of Las Vegas, Nevada.
- Camp McCarran was largely designed by Charles Staples. Its location script was written by Eric Fenstermaker.[Non-canon 2] The airport exteriors and vehicle models were built by Cochey Cantu,[Non-canon 3] while the interior of the concourse and the supply shack were implemented by Paul Fish.[Non-canon 4]
- For some reason, sometimes your companion may not follow you to the main area of the Camp, even if you didn't tell them to wait. To fix, just enter the terminal building, fast travel, or exit the camp.[verified]
- Game corrupts save while saving at Camp McCarran, during the quest to kill Motor-Runner. Saving in front of it can corrupt saves and the same rule applies to any other save file made after the ones in the Camp.[verified]
- NCR Troopers sometimes perform as though they are typing on a typewriter/computer (including typing sound effects) while seated in the dining tent, even though there is no keyboard present since the tables have been given the wrong "idle marker."[verified]
- If you acquire the journal in Corporal White's locker in the Camp McCarran concourse before receiving the optional task "search Corporal White's personal locker" in the quest The White Wash, the quest cannot be completed. This might lead to a save game issue where the loading screen dialogue tells you that the memory device is no longer present due to inaccessible DLC objects. The game will then restart upon loading dialogue confirmation. This repeats with the next loading attempt, rendering the save game useless.[verified]
- Sometimes when you enter the main terminal building all NCR troopers will become hostile if you are detected.[verified]
- After playing the game for a long time (at least an hour consecutively), Camp McCarran may cause extreme frame rate drop. This happens in both the outside area and within the concourse. Quitting the game and restarting should fix the problem.[verified]
- On occasion, when moving to the second floor of the terminal building, NCR troopers can become hostile. This also sometimes happens when exiting Camp McCarran. A quick fast-travel to another location and back can fix this.[verified]
- [verification overdue] Upon entering the area, the game might crash when loading. It does not corrupt a save, and can only be fixed by turning the console on and off and going back on the game, as the home button cannot be used.
- Order of Withdrawal
- The Courier: "What's Camp McCarran's role in NCR operations?"
James Hsu: "It's our main base. We took it because it lets us keep an eye on the Strip. And it had already been fortified before the Great War. From here we handle most of the logistics for our operations in Nevada. Troop allocation, supply distribution, intel. Usually General Oliver runs the show here, but he's on his way to the Dam now, so I've taken on a lot of his duties here."
(James Hsu's dialogue)
- The Courier: "Where is Lt. Gorobets?"
Dhatri: "Out in the yard. Gorobets coordinates our sniper teams. He's been gunning for Nephi for weeks now. Only thing he hasn't had is willing bait. Don't have enough troops to order anyone beyond the fence. Not anymore, anyway."
- Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition pp. 310-314: "[2.19] Camp McCarran
Camp McCarran is the main base for NCR military operations in southern Nevada. Formerly McCarran International Airport, the structure now houses and trains NCR's sizable battalions. Camp McCarran is the hub of activity in the area, and constantly has soldiers moving into and out of it. Despite this, security is tight and there are only a few ways in. A monorail connects Camp McCarran and The Strip, but it's heavily guarded.
Truck Mechanic Area
Concourse Gate A
This has been turned into a dorm for NCR overflow troops. Check Corporal White's Locker (32) for his Journal, which helps you out during Side Quest: The White Wash. Also of interest is Private Crenshaw's Footlocker (33); you can place something in here if you're working with Captain Curtis during Side Quest: I Put a Spell on You."
(Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition Tour of the Mojave Wasteland)
- Paul Fish's website