Fallout Wiki
Fallout Wiki


A Boy And His Dog[]

There are several allusions to the book A Boy and His Dog by Harlan Ellison[Non-game 2][Non-game 3]:

  • Some elements of inspiration have carried along all the way from Fallout. The vaults, the blending of 1950s America with futuristic horror, and the glowing ones are all elements that were used in A Boy and His Dog. The name Dogmeat is the most explicit reference. In the movie adaption, the lead human character calls his dog, Blood, "Dogmeat" when insulting him.
  • In Oasis, Harold calls the tree he is encased in, Bob, "Herbert" because he finds it funny and it annoys the tree. In A Boy and His Dog the dog Blood, often calls his boy, Vic, "Albert." Blood finds this funny, while Vic is annoyed by it.


Devil's Highway

The name of the perk Devil's Highway is a reference to the song Highway to Hell by AC/DC.

See also Led Zeppelin.

American Civil War[]

The names of several characters are references to historical aspects of the American Civil War.

Apocalypse Now[]

The Beatles[]

Beneath the Planet of the Apes[]

In Megaton, the undetonated atomic bomb and the Children of Atom are a reference to the film Beneath the Planet of the Apes, in which a cult worships an intact nuclear intercontinental ballistic missile.

Bethesda Softworks[]

During the birthday sequence in Vault 101, Butch will attempt to take the Lone Wanderer's sweetroll that was given to them by Old Lady Palmer. This is a running scenario in Bethesda's games, particularly in the Elder Scrolls series starting with Arena during character creation.

The Bible[]

The Lone Wanderer's birth date, 7/13/2258, is a biblical reference to Micah 7:13, which reads: "And the earth will become desolate because of her inhabitants, on account of the fruit of their deeds."[citation needed]

Big Boy Restaurants[]


The Tall Boy statue[Non-game 4] erected in Paradise Falls is modeled after the mascot of the Big Boy fast-food restaurant chains.

Billy Idol[]

The name of the quest A Nice Day for a Right Wedding is a play-on-words of the lyrics "It's a nice day for a white wedding" from the song "White Wedding" by Billy Idol.

Black Isle Studios[]

Black Isle Studios is alluded to twice:

Blade Runner[]

There are two references to the 1982 science fiction film Blade Runner.

Bradbury, Ray[]

The McClellan family townhome contains several references to the works of Ray Bradbury.

  • The location as a whole is a reference to Ray Bradbury's short story "There Will Come Soft Rains," about a robotic house in Allendale, California that still works after a nuclear war, not knowing that its owners have perished in the atomic blast. The poem that the Mister Handy recites is "There Will Come Soft Rains" by Sara Teasdale, a post-apocalyptic poem from 1920,[Non-game 5] which also inspired Bradbury's story of the same name.[Non-game 6]
  • "Only one living thing makes an appearance in the [Bradbury] story: a wild dog (though a family dog in later versions), which had been slowly dying from radiation poisoning. It makes its way back to the house only to die; its corpse is then swiftly removed by the house's automated cleaning robots." The dead body of the McClellans' dog Muffy can be found in the vicinity of the house exterior.[Non-game 7]
  • The name of the townhome is also a reference to the McClellan family from another one of Ray Bradbury's books, Fahrenheit 451. The address "Bradley Place" is a play-on-words of Ray Bradbury's last name, while the number of 2026 is a reference to the setting of "There Will Come Soft Rains," taking place in August 2026.[Non-game 8]


The Pint-Sized Slasher is heavily based on the character who appears on the game's poster of CarnEvil, a Midway arcade videogame released in 1998.



The name of the company Chryslus Motors is derived from Chrysler and General Motors, both American automobile manufacturers headquartered in Michigan.


The butler in My Megaton house is a Mister Handy robot named "Wadsworth." Wadsworth the Butler is Tim Curry's character in the film Clue. Like other Mister Handy robots in Fallout 3, Wadsworth speaks in a tone and voice similar to that employed by Tim Curry in the film.


Nuka-Cola is a version of Coca-Cola in the Fallout world. The Nuka-Cola bottles, vending machines, and advertisements mirror those of the Coca-Cola brand in the 1950s.

Sierra Petrovita claims to be addicted to Nuka-Cola, a reference to the fact that the original Coca-Cola recipe included cocaine.

Nuka-Cola Quantum is likely a reference to the short-lived Coca-Cola C2 which was advertised as having "half the carbohydrates, sugars and calories" of regular Coca-Cola, an almost opposite of Quantum's advertisement of "twice the calories, twice the carbohydrates, twice the caffeine and twice the taste" of regular Nuka-Cola.

Conan the Barbarian[]

Grognak the Barbarian is modeled after the Robert E. Howard character, Conan the Barbarian.

Cool Hand Luke[]

Rory McLaren will say, "Nobody can eat 50 eggs!" from the film Cool Hand Luke, in which the title character accepts a bet to eat 50 eggs in an hour.

Crowley, Aleister[]

Allistair Tenpenny's name and that of his nemesis, Mister Crowley, a reference to the infamous British occultist, Aleister Crowley. "Mister Crowley" is the title of an Ozzy Osborne song about him, released in 1980.


Jimson and Woodrose, two of the tribals in Point Lookout, are references to jimson weed and Hawaiian woodrose seeds respectively, which are both potent deliriants.

Dewey, John/Melvil[]

Dean Dewey is probably named after both John Dewey, an education reformer, and Melvil Dewey, the librarian who created the Dewey Decimal System.

Die Hard[]

Bryan Wilks, while in the Pulowski Preservation shelter during the Those! quest, says, "Now I know what a TV dinner feels like;" quotes a line from the movie Die Hard. His name also has the same initials as Bruce Willis, the actor who played John McClane, the main character in the movie.

Dirty Harry[]

Callahan's Magnum refers to Dirty Harry's signature Smith & Wesson .44 Magnum revolver, and it is also both chambered in .44 Magnum, and the strongest revolver in the game (if all add-ons are installed), fitting with Harry's quote "and it's the most powerful handgun in the world."

Similarly, the character of Harold Callahan is a reference to Clint Eastwood's character in the film series, Harry Callahan.

Doctor Strangelove[]

Dialogue with Ronald Laren ("Crap! This has to be about the Nuka-Cola machine I got for her! It had this label on it saying "Warning: If you tamper with this unit you will have to answer to the Nuka-Cola Corporation."") and a report by Harold Callahan on General Robert Dobbs shooting a Nuka-Cola machine are similar to a scene in Doctor Strangelove involving a Coca-Cola machine.

In the movie, Captain Lionel Mandrake asks Colonel Bat Guano to shoot a Coca-Cola machine to get spare change so that Mandrake can use a payphone to inform the president of the United States of General Ripper's CRM code to avert the bombers Ripper ordered to launch a nuclear attack on the Soviet Union. Guano initially refuses, saying that the machine is private property, but when Mandrake insists he shoot the machine Guano warns him that "You're gonna have to answer to the Coca-Cola Company" before firing three times into the machine with a rifle, then gets sprayed in the face with soda while getting the change.


Lucy West, the woman whose interaction begins the Blood Ties quest, is a reference to Lucy Westenra, Mina Murray's friend in Bram Stoker's Dracula.[citation needed]

Arefu is a small village in Romania, most well known for its proximity to the former castle of Vlad Tepes (aka "Dracula" and "Vlad the Impaler").

Duck and Cover[]

The explosives skill book Duck and Cover!, as well as posters present in the game-world, take their name and the image of Bert the Turtle from a instructional film of the same name.


Mentats in the book Dune are humans trained to function as "living computers"; Mentats in the Fallout games are a chem that temporarily increases Intelligence and Perception.

E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial[]

Elliott Tercorien shares his first name and initials with the main character from the 1982 movie E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, a boy named Elliott Taylor who befriends a space alien.

The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion[]


The utility pole behind Big Town that bears the tag "TES-04."

Utility poles with the identification tag "TES-04" are located around the Capital Wasteland, with one located outside of the city wall at Big Town, at the exact center of the game map, similar to the White-Gold Tower in Oblivion.

The image used to portray "Grognak the Barbarian" is similar to the image used to portray the Barbarian class in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion.

Ellis, Warren[]

Mr. Moorellis is a portmanteau of the last names of Alan Moore and Warren Ellis.

See also Alan Moore, Promethea.

Escape from New York[]

The Infiltrator's design was directly inspired by the MAC-10 carried by the character Snake Plissken in the film Escape from New York.[Non-game 9]

Evil Dead 3: Army of Darkness[]

One of the dialogue choices upon encountering Moira after she becomes a ghoul, is "Moira, don't take this the wrong way, but you got ugly real fast," a reference to the line from Army of Darkness.


The title of the publication Tales of a Junktown Jerky Vendor is a reference to Fallout. Specifically the unmarked quest Blackmail Iguana Bob. The quest starts with Doc Morbid in Junktown, goes through Iguana Bob Frazier in the Hub, and ends with the aforementioned blackmail back in Junktown. Wherein the Vault Dweller discovered that Doc Morbid had been supplying pieces of human meat that were being sold as iguana bits.

Fawkes, Guy[]

When asked about his name, Fawkes says that it was the name of a man who died for what he believed in.

Fear Factory[]

The first log entry in the research lead terminals in the Museum of Technology contains lyrics from the song Archetype by the band Fear Factory: The infection has been removed / the soul of this machine has improved.

The mainframe is named the "Archetype Model FF06"; Archetype being the song name, FF standing for Fear Factory, and 06 being the album number.

Vocalist Burton C. Bell's name can be abbreviated to B. Bell, the researcher's name.

Flags of Our Fathers[]

During the Fallout 3 add-on Operation: Anchorage, a reporter is gathering a group of soldiers for a photo and says "Maybe someone will make this picture into a statue one day." This is a reference to the film Flags of Our Fathers.

Robby the Robot[]

The Art of Fallout 3 states that during development, Emil Pagliarulo's input on every robot was to "make it more like Robby the Robot." The protectron's original design went through many iterations before artists settled on a design that has "the vintage character of Robby" and that "captures the quintessential 1950's robot character more than any other."[9]

Gorillas in the Mist[]

Isabella Proud's story is a reference to Dian Fossey's, the basis of the film Gorillas in the Mist.


The word "GURPS" can appear as a password when hacking computers; this is the name of the RPG rules system that Fallout was originally planned to be based on. It would later be replaced by the SPECIAL system.

Hindu culture[]

The brahmin in all the Fallout games refer to the Brahmin in Hindu culture. Their use in the franchise is likely a play on the reverence held for cows in Hindu culture. This has been seen as disrespectful to Hindu culture, and the use of the name brahmin was banned in Indian releases of Fallout 3.

I Married a Communist[]

FO3 Broadway 2

The movie I Married a Maoist, mentioned on the Broadway Cinema marquee, references the 1949 film The Woman on Pier 13, originally slated to be titled I Married a Communist.

Incredible Hulk, The[]

A Mister Gutsy says, "I'm starting to get angry. You would not like me when I'm angry." This is much like what Dr. Banner says to Mr. Mcgee in the opening sequence of the TV series The Incredible Hulk. Exact quote: "Mr. McGee, don't make me angry. You wouldn't like me when I'm angry."

The Vault Boy image for the Nerd Rage! perk looks like Bruce Banner transforming into the Hulk.

Independence Day[]

If asked what the Zetan aliens want with Earth, Elliott Tercorien will make up four different explanations for alien encounters, referencing four sci-fi movies and TV series. The resource consuming theory, is the plot of the movie Independence Day.

Internet culture[]

Moira Brown's terminal password is MB3K-OMFG; the last four characters, OMFG, are a common internet acronym for "Oh My Fucking God."


Fallout 3 Interplay logo monument

In Chevy Chase, just outside the stairs down to Tenleytown/Friendship station, there is a small square with a monument that is a wink to Interplay (the original publishers of Fallout 1 & 2). The bronze Earth with a circling rocket appeared prominently when launching Fallout 1 and Fallout 2, Interplay's official logo.

Invasion of the Body Snatchers[]

Invasion of the Body Snatchers reference

James Bond[]

Wint and Kidd are references to the James Bond novel and movie "Diamonds are Forever" in which Mr. Wint and Mr. Kidd were assassins charged with killing James Bond.

Jefferson, Thomas[]

"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance," and "Commerce with all nations, alliance with none," both lines spoken by John Henry Eden, are attributed to Thomas Jefferson.

Judas Priest[]

In The Pitt, an armor named Leather Rebel, previously owned by a priest, is a reference to the song "Leather Rebel" by the band Judas Priest.

Led Zeppelin[]

Escalator to Heaven

The name of the perk Escalator to Heaven is a reference to the song Stairway to Heaven by Led Zepplin.

Legend of Zelda, The[]

The quest name The Legend of Zeta in the add-on Mothership Zeta is a reference to the game series The Legend of Zelda.

Lincoln, Abraham[]

The Karmic title "Last, Best Hope of Humanity" is a phrase which has its origin in Lincoln's closing remarks to his 1862 Annual Message to Congress, "We shall nobly save, or meanly lose, the last best hope of earth." ("Last, best hope" has since become a popular rhetorical trope.)

The final, twenty-first level in Fallout has this title in its manual, the Vault Dweller's Survival Guide.

The dog's name "Four Score" is a reference to Lincoln's Gettysburg Address.

Abraham Washington's first name is a reference to Abraham Lincoln.

Lincoln's repeater is a reference to the custom Henry rifle which was presented to Abraham Lincoln in 1862 by the New Haven Arms Company[Non-game 10]. The in-game rifle shares its receiver engravings with those on the real repeater, however it is not an exact reproduction of the original weapon.

Living Dead/George Romero series[]

The name of the quest, You Gotta Shoot 'Em in the Head refers to the rule of zombie fiction that the only way to dispatch a zombie is to destroy the brain.

Dawn of the Dead[]

In the The Pitt add-on, Everett says, "from here to Monroeville," which is a reference to Dawn of the Dead, a movie in which most of the action takes place in Monroeville, Pennsylvania.

Land of the Dead[]

Tenpenny Tower and its attack by ghouls is similar to Land of the Dead's Fiddler's Green, a fortress-tower owned by a wealthy elitist.

See also AC/DC.


The combination to Billy Creel's safe is 15, 16, 23, 42; which is the latter two-thirds of a recurring chain of numbers in the television show Lost.

Lovecraft, H.P.[]

The story told in the personal logs found in the Dunwich Building, the name of the building, and the whispering obelisk found in the Virulent Underchambers refer to Lovecraft's Cthulhu mythos/setting. See The Dunwich Horror.

In Point Lookout, Obadiah Blackhall's desire to recover the Krivbeknih is much like Wilbur Whateley's attempts to get Miskatonic University's copy of the Necronomicon, also from "The Dunwich Horror." The Krivbeknih is a reference to the Necronomicon, which is a mystical grimoire in H.P. Lovecraft's works.

MacArthur, Douglas[]

Sergeant RL-3 says, "Old warbots never die! We just rust away." This is a reference to General Douglas MacArthur's quote, "Old soldiers never die; they just fade away..."

Mad Max[]


Mad Max and his dog in The Road Warrior.

The Mad Max movies, starring Mel Gibson as a post-apocalyptic warrior, are a pervasive influence on the Fallout series.

  • An iconic shot from Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior was a direct influence on the "Main Character and Dogmeat" image on the back of Fallout 3's box, which also appears in every ending.
  • One of the Little Lamplight children uses the word humongous incorrectly, saying "humungus." This is an allusion to Lord Humungus, the leader of the villainous gang in Road Warrior.
  • The super mutant war cry "No more games!" is also a reference to Lord Humungus.
  • Upon meeting Harkness, one of his replies might be "Oh yeah? And I'm a fairy princess." This is a reference to an utterance made by Mad Max when he talks to MasterBlaster in Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome.
  • The design of the leather armor in all four Fallout games is based on Mel Gibson's armor in the Mad Max series, particularly the single-sleeved armor in The Road Warrior.
  • Fallout 3's Dogmeat appears to be a Blue Heeler, the same breed as Max's dog in The Road Warrior.
  • There is a random encounter with a character named Mel, who wears a leather jacket and sports a sawed-off shotgun. High Perception grants the information that the shotgun is unloaded. In The Road Warrior, Max (played by Mel Gibson) threatens the Gyrocaptain with his shotgun, while it was unloaded.
  • Another Mel previously appeared to protect Dogmeat at the Café of Broken Dreams in Fallout 2.
  • The raiders' style of dressing is similar to that of the various raider and biker gangs in the Mad Max films.
  • Medical braces are similar to those that Max wears on his left leg in the films.
  • The scoped .44 Magnum/Blackhawk resembles the gun used by the Lord Humungus in The Road Warrior, which was a scoped Smith & Wesson Model 29, also in .44 Magnum.
  • The outfit worn by Mayor MacCready of Little Lamplight is identical to the costume worn by Jedediah the pilot's son in Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome, a pith helmet, goggles and a jacket one size too big.
  • The image for the perk Pitt Fighter depicts Vault Boy wearing armor identical to Blaster's armor in Beyond Thunderdome.
  • The outfits worn by slaves in the Pitt resemble those worn by the slaves in Beyond Thunderdome.
  • The arena in the Pitt resembles the Thunderdome.


Dr. Zimmer is probably a reference to the film Mandroid, in which Dr. Karl Zimmer is the creator of a humanoid robot.

Mars Attacks![]

If asked what the Zetan aliens want with Earth, Elliott Tercorien will make up four different explanations for alien encounters, referencing four sci-fi movies and TV series. The theory that inadvertent broadcasting radio signals amounted to a declaration of war on them is the plot of the movie Mars Attacks!.


The phrase "First mistake... last mistake," uttered by Pitt raiders, Wildmen and several other hostiles, is from the Megadeth song "Holy Wars" from the album Rust in Peace.


Fawkes says, "I only kill to know I'm alive," which is from the song "So What" by Ministry.

Moby Dick[]

If the Lone Wanderer visits Fort Independence and asks an Outcast named Defender Morgan, "What have you got against the Brotherhood?", she will refer to Elder Lyons as "Ahab Lyons," who "is off chasing his super mutant white whale." This is a reference to Herman Melville's Moby Dick. If the Lone Wanderer passes an Intelligence check, they can continue the reference by inquiring as to whether Morgan believes that Lyons will be killed by the super mutants, to which Morgan expresses surprise that they have knowledge of the story.

Monty Python[]

Monty Python and the Holy Grail
  • Squire Maxson says that he "sort of shot" Sentinel Lyons but that it's "just a flesh wound." The black knight in the Holy Grail says the same thing, after having both of his arms cut off.
  • Kimba's dialogue line "That's funny, I thought we were an autonomous collective," is a reference to the Holy Grail. The line is spoken to King Arthur by a woman when she is surprised to learn that there is a king.
Monty Python's Life of Brian

A section title of the quest Those! in the Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition is directly named after Monty Python's Life of Brian.[Non-game 11]

Moore, Alan[]

Mr. Moorellis is a portmanteau of the last names of Alan Moore and Warren Ellis.

See also Promethea, Warren Ellis.

Music Man, The[]

Three Dog's line "Trouble, oh we got trouble, right here in Rivet City!" is a reference to the song Trouble Right Here In River City from the 1950s musical The Music Man. The refrain to the aforementioned song is "Trouble, oh we got trouble, right here in River City!", River City being where the play takes place.

Mystery Science Theater 3000[]

The Hubris Comics terminal entries list a comic called Drake Tungsten, Chrono-Cowboy. This is a reference to the episode Hercules Against the Moon Men.

A computer in the National Archives contains a memo from the man in charge of robot maintenance signed, P. Brantseg. Patrick Brantseg voiced Gypsy on the show and was in charge of building and maintaining the puppets, causing him to be listed in the show's credits as "puppet wrangler."

Nearby there is a footlocker, filled with servos and a dead crow, a reference to two beloved robots.

Mythology, Chinese[]

In Chinese mythology, Xuanlong, also known as the Black Dragon, is the highest rank of dragons of their tiered system. Thus, the Xuanlong assault rifle, is so named because it is the most powerful fully automatic rifle in the game, more so than ordinary Chinese assault rifles.

Mythology, Greek[]

Cerberus is a reference to the Cerberus of Greek mythology. While Cerberus the robot acts as a guard dog for the settlement Underworld, Cerberus of Greek mythology acts a guard dog to the gate of the underworld.

Charon is a reference to the Charon of Greek mythology, an immortal who presides as the ferryman of Hades who carries the souls of the dead across the River Styx and Acheron.

Centaurs refer to the centaurs of Greek mythology, a mythical race of creatures that are half-man, half-horse.

Underworld is a reference to the underworld, the last destination for souls of those recently deceased.

Mythology, Norse[]

The slaver that kills the bartender in Paradise Falls, Ymir, is a reference to the Norse frost giant whose body is the foundation of Midgard (the Earth). His son is called Jotun, which is the name of the race of the Norse giants, Jötunn.

A raider named Thor (the Norse god of storms and strength) is referenced by recordings found in the Dunwich Building.

The names of Desmond Lockheart's dogs Freki and Geri in Point Lookout are a reference to Odin's two wolf companions named Freki and Geri. Freki roughly translates to "ravenous," Geri to "greedy."

National Treasure[]

The premise of acquiring the Declaration of Independence by subterfuge, the plot of the quest Stealing Independence, may have been inspired by the plot of the 2004 heist film National Treasure, which involves the protagonists stealing the Declaration of Independence.


Armitage is a common cyberpunk name since William Gibson used it for the Wintermute-controlled mercenary in his 1984 novel Neuromancer.

Occam's Razor[]

Occam's Razor refers to the scientific principle of the same name that describes the more simple solution is better than the more complex one.

Paradise Lost[]

John Milton's Paradise Lost appears in Fallout 3 as a skill-training book.

The name of the area Paradise Falls is a multiple entendre referencing Paradise Lost.


In the town "Little Lamplight" the doctor, Lucy, is a reference to the character "Lucy" from Charles Schultz's Peanuts. Inside of the clinic where she is located, a sign reading "The Doctor is in" can be found, which was often seen on Lucy's stand in the series.


Lulu, the woman who claims to feed the army in Uptown, is named after Lulu's noodles, a popular restaurant near the University of Pittsburgh.

The character's name, Reddup, is a Pittsburgh term meaning "to clean."

Duke may be named after Duquesne University.

Mex is most likely a reference to the chain of Mad Mex restaurants, which are relatively popular in Pittsburgh and the surrounding area, e.g. Monroeville and Squirrel Hill.

Phantom is a reference to Pittsburgh's only amusement park, Kennywood, that has a roller coaster called "The Steel Phantom," which was later rebuilt and renamed the "Phantom's Revenge."

Squill's name is likely a reference to Squirrel Hill, a residential Pittsburgh neighborhood that Carnegie Mellon University students (though not most other Pittsburghers) call "Squill Hill" for short.


When a Robobrain loses track of the Lone Wanderer, they may say "Are you still there?", a phrase noted to be a direct homage to the 2007 video game Portal, where the phrase is used by the turrets in the game.

Princess Bride, The[]

While patching up the Lone Wanderer during the Wasteland Survival Guide personal injury subquest, Moira asks them to describe the pain with the line, "And remember, this is for posterity!" This echoes a line used by Count Rugin in The Princess Bride when asking Westley to describe the torture in the Pit of Despair.


Mr. Neptura refers to the character Marto Neptura from Alan Moore's Promethea.

See also Alan Moore, Warren Ellis.

P.S. I Love You[]

A movie marquee in Vernon Square displays the title "P.S. I Hate You," a reference to the 2007 film P.S. I Love You.

"Raven, The"[]

The holodisk Box 1191 - Password backup in Point Lookout is a reference to Edgar Allen Poe's story "The Raven," specifically, the famous use of the word "nevermore."

Red Army propaganda[]


Comparison between real-life Red Army and Fallout 3 poster

The Civil Defense Administration poster, "Where will you be when the holocaust comes?" is modeled after a Soviet Red Army recruitment poster.

Relic Hunter[]

During the quest Stealing Independence, Sydney greets the Lone Wanderer as a fellow "relic hunter," making reference to the television series Relic Hunter, in which the main character is named Sydney Fox.

Road, The[]


hard cover

The Road is a 2006 novel by Cormac McCarthy. This post-apocalyptic story influenced Bethesda Softworks (as mentioned by Todd Howard in this interview) in their work on Fallout 3.

  • The most overt references to the book are the hunters who peddle "strange meat" (human flesh) and the cannibals in the town of Andale.
  • The name of the Abbey of the Road faction may have been partly inspired by The Road.

Roosevelt, Franklin Delano[]

President Eden's radio broadcasts are modeled on the "Fireside Chats" of President Franklin D. Roosevelt.

Rosie the Riveter[]

Wendy the Welder

The haircut "Wendy the Welder," available to female characters, is a reference to Rosie the Riveter, a model for working women during World War II.

Rubin, Rick[]

Terminal documents show that the overseer of Vault 92, the music preservation vault, was named Richard Rubin; a reference to the real-life Rick Rubin, an American record producer.

Sagan, Carl[]

The planetarium exhibit's pre-recorded guide in the Museum of Technology has a voice and introduction that is a reference to Carl Sagan and his Cosmos educational series.

Saving Private Ryan[]

Asked what she does for the Brotherhood, Knight Captain Dusk replies that she is a sniper, and then says "Put any mutie bastard within one mile of me and my rifle and well, pack it up troops... fight's over." Jackson in Saving Private Ryan makes the same remark, with "Hitler" replacing "mutie" as the subject.

When asked what his real name is, Knight Captain Gallows responds with "What's the pool up to?", similar to Captain Miller's response in Saving Private Ryan when a query is made regarding his occupation.


After the Galaxy News Radio quest, Three Dog shouts "You can't stop the signal!" This is a quote from the film Serenity.

Shelley, Percy Bysshe[]

The Point Lookout quest "An Antique Land" is a reference to the first line of the poem "Ozymandias" by English Romantic poet Percy Bysshe Shelley. The name of the ship, the USS Ozymandias, is a reference to the title, and the Bysshe Company mentioned within the quest is a reference to the poet's middle name.

Sifl and Olly Show, The[]

One of the 911 Dispatch terminals in the Germantown police HQ contains rantings referencing the song "Llama School" from The Sifl and Olly Show. The password for a computer terminal in the same building is "Vicious Coy," the name of the Precious Roy knockoff on the X-and-O show.

Simpsons, The[]

Some of the radios and televisions in the wasteland are called Radiation Kings (there is also a Radiation King store in downtown D.C.), which is the name of the television Homer had as a young boy. This easter egg was originally present in the opening movie of Fallout.

Smokey the Bear[]

When Three Dog is talking about radiation, he says, "Remember, only you can prevent human flesh fires." This is a reference to the iconic slogan "only you can prevent forest fires."


In the Capitol Post basement is Gibson who has been decapitated in the same manner as Jean-Jack Gibson in Snatcher.[Non-game 12] On both Gibsons' bodies identical notes are found, reading, "Search the house!" in addition to a locked small model of a house in both Gibsons' homes.

There are also houses belonging to Benson and Gillian in Minefield. Benson Cunningham and Gillian Seed are the main characters of Snatcher.


Cram is a reference to the canned pork brand Spam.

Starship Troopers[]

One of the Brotherhood of Steel soldiers spurs on his comrades by asking whether they want to live forever. The quote is similar to, "Come on, you apes, you want to live forever?" which figures prominently in Robert Heinlein's Starship Troopers and its movie adaptation. That, in turn, is a reference to a quote sometimes attributed to one Sergeant Major Daniel Joseph "Dan" Daly and having an extensive history going back at least to Frederick the Great.

Star Trek[]

Star Trek: The Original Series[]

  • During the first fade-to-white in the opening character creation, the overseer says, "Dammit! We need a doctor, not a deadbeat,"[10] an allusion to lines in the original Star Trek in which Leonard McCoy says to Captain Kirk, "Dammit Jim, I'm a doctor, not a [profession that isn't medical]."
  • If the player asks Doctor Preston to purchase chems he will respond that he "is a doctor, not a dealer!" This is an allusion to the phrase "I'm a doctor, not a [profession that isn't medical]." spoken by the Star Trek character Leonard McCoy.[11]
  • The Adventures of Captain Cosmos takes its inspiration from Star Trek. Captain Cosmos is known to have aired at 8:00 p.m. on Thursdays (the timeslot that Star Trek filled during its first two seasons in the real world).
  • In the Mothership Zeta add-on, the Lone Wanderer and Sally (who is a fan of Captain Cosmos) take a diverse crew into ship-to-ship combat against another alien mothership.

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan[]

  • The password for the shipping computer in the Nuka-Cola plant is NC-C1864. The registry number of the USS Reliant, the starship hijacked by Khan, was NCC-1864.
  • The end of the final quest Take it Back! (if the Lone Wanderer chooses to take the path of self-sacrifice) resembles Spock's self-sacrifice at the end of the movie.

Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home[]

Doctor Gillian Taylor and her whales from the movie are mentioned in a terminal (Log Entry MA-0085) on the first floor in the Museum Authority Building.

Star Trek: The Next Generation[]

  • Protector McGraw states that the Anchorage Reclamation simulation ran without "safety protocols," which meant that a person killed inside the simulation would also die in the real world. The holodecks introduced in The Next Generation had a similar safety protocol feature that was often disabled as part of an episode's plot.
  • If asked what the Zetan aliens want with Earth, Elliott Tercorien will make up four different explanations for alien encounters, referencing four sci-fi movies and TV series. The theory that the aliens seeded life on Earth is a plot of the twentieth episode of the sixth season The Chase.

Star Trek: Voyager[]

The robot Sawbones greets the player character with, "Please state the nature of the medical emergency," the signature phrase of the Emergency Medical hologram "The Doctor" from Star Trek: Voyager.

Star Wars Episode IV: A New Hope[]

During the Mothership Zeta add-on, it is possible to enter the waste disposal area of the ship during the quest Among the Stars where Sally is found fixing an elevator. There is an optional speech option here, "what an incredible smell you've discovered," which is also Han Solo's line from the movie Episode IV: A New Hope in which the main characters find themselves in the maintenance level of the Death Star.

Sting (musician)[]

Terminals in Vault 92, the "musicians' vault," document a resident named Gordie Sumner; Gordon Sumner is Sting's birth name.

Strapping Young Lad[]

The bottom log entry on the maintenance department terminal in the Presidential sub level (accessed through a Broken Steel quest) references Canadian heavy metal band Strapping Young Lad's song "Detox": it mentions "the new SYL-02 Xoted mainframe" ("SYL" is short for "Strapping Young Lad," "Xoted" is "Detox" backwards, and the song appears on their second album), the entry is written by a mechanic called "D.T." (the initials of frontman Devin Townsend), and ends with quoting the lyrics to the song ("I wish that I could get to sleep and just get this over with... this is only high school bullshit. I'm lost, I'm freaking and everybody knows... everyone's watching.")

Street Fighter[]

When entering Little Lamplight for the first time and talking to Mayor MacCready, there is a Speech challenge that goes, "The day I showed up here is the best day of your life. For me, it was Tuesday." This references the 1994 film Street Fighter, in which M. Bison and Chun-Li are having a conversation about his murdering her father, which he doesn't remember. The phrase "For me, it was Tuesday" has since entered popular lexicon.[Non-game 13]

For you, the day Bison graced your village was the most important day of your life. But for me, it was Tuesday.— M. Bison


Sweeney Todd[]

In the village of Andale the Lone Wanderer can be given a strange meat pie, which is a reference to Sweeney Todd. In Sweeney Todd, Mrs. Lovett the downstairs neighbor, turns Sweeney Todd's victims into veal pies.

Tank Girl[]

The breastplates of raider ordinance armor's female counterpart, which are bomb-shaped, are similar to the one Tank Girl wears in Episode 4 (Feb-89). The film adaptation also depicts similar usage.


When talking to the slave Prosper in The Pitt add-on, one dialogue option reads, "Your clothes. Give them to me. Now." Arnold Schwarzenegger's character in The Terminator says the same line to a group of delinquents after arriving naked from time traveling.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day[]

The picture for the Cyborg perk resembles a T-800's appearance with half of the flesh on its face severly damaged.


The quest Those! is a reference to the 1954 Oscar-nominated sci-fi classic Them! about giant ants, the result of nuclear testing in New Mexico.

The Shining[]

In the Tenpenny Tower Third Floor Apartments, there is a tricycle in the hallway, along with bloodstains on the walls and an overturned chair. This is a reference to the movie The Shining, where the main character sees two little girls in the hallway, then blinks and they are laying butchered on the ground.

The Thing[]

Mayor MacCready's full name is Robert Joseph MacCready. R.J. MacReady is the name of the main protagonist in The Thing, who was played by Kurt Russell.

Tommy James & The Shondells[]

Eulogy Jones' slave bodyguards Crimson and Clover are references to the song "Crimson And Clover" by the group Tommy James and the Shondells.

Turtledove, Harry[]

Turtledove Detention Camp, the military prison found in Point Lookout, is named for Harry Turtledove, a novelist famous for writing alternate history stories such as The Guns of the South and the Southern Victory/"Timeline-191" series.

United States moon landing[]

When completing Head of State in favor of the Slavers, Three Dog will report on the incident with a news section on Galaxy News Radio. He closes with the phrase "One small step backwards for man, one giant evolutionary rewind for mankind..." This is a reference to U.S. astronaut Neil Armstrong's quote after taking his first step on the moon. The original quote is "One small step for (a) man, one giant leap for mankind."

United States nuclear weapons program[]

Fat Man was the code name for the atomic bomb detonated over Nagasaki, Japan. This was changed to "Nuka Launcher" for the game's Japanese localization.

Washington, George[]

Abraham Washington's last name is a reference to George Washington.

West Side Story[]

Paul Hannon Jr. has a line, "Birth to Earth, womb to tomb." This is a direct quote from the Broadway show West Side Story, in which the character is also a member of a young 50's American gang.

Wild Bill[]

Wild Bill and his .32 revolver in The Pitt is a reference to Wild Bill Hickok.

Wing Commander IV[]

"The price of freedom is eternal vigilance," is said by John Henry Eden who is voiced by Malcolm McDowell and also used this line repeatedly during his performance as Sir Admiral Geoffery Tolwyn in Wing Commander IV: The Price of Freedom.

Wizard of Oz, The[]

After completing The American Dream and convincing President Eden to self-destruct, Three Dog will report on the incident on Galaxy News Radio, opening with the phrase: "Ding, dong, the sanctimonious, self-righteous, self-proclaimed Presidential asshole is dead!" This is a reference to "Ding, dong, the witch is dead!" sung by the munchkins in The Wizard of Oz.

Wolfman Jack[]

The GNR DJ Three Dog has a similar on-air personality to 1950's radio icon Wolfman Jack, who was featured in the film American Graffiti.


The perk Adamantium Skeleton is a reference to the fictional metal alloy that makes up the skeleton of Wolverine from X-Men.

On certain occasions a super mutant brute will say "We are the future." A reference to Magneto's quote about how mutants are the future of evolution.

Zen Buddhism[]

  • When the Lone Wanderer tries to rob Uncle Leo, his dialogue, in which he tells them the clothes are a gift and he wishes he could give the Lone Wanderer the "wonderful moon," comes from the following Zen Buddhist koan:

Ryokan, a Zen master, lived the simplest kind of life in a little hut at the foot of a mountain. One evening a thief visited the hut only to discover there was nothing to steal.
Ryokan returned and caught him. "You have come a long way to visit me," he told the prowler, "and you should not return empty-handed. Please take my clothes as a gift."
The thief was bewildered. He took the clothes and slunk away.
Ryoken sat naked, watching the moon. "Poor fellow," he mused, "I wish I could have given him this beautiful moon."[1]

  • Much of the random dialogue from Fawkes can be heard as simple wasteland survival advice but also references Zen philosophy. Examples include "Be aware of the present moment" and "There is safety in mindfulness."


  1. Tenpenny Tower terminal entries; Cheng personal computer, Daily Affirmation
  2. Vault 92 terminal entries; Richard Rubin's terminal, Personal Entry 000897377
  3. Mister Gutsy: "There's nothing I like better than the smell of plasma in the morning!"
    (Mister Gutsy's dialogue)
  4. The Lone Wanderer: "I want you to use ranged weapons."
    Charon: "If that is what you wish, then it is what I shall do. I must say, that I find happiness in a warm gun."
    (Charon's dialogue)
  5. Museum of Technology plaque: "This flag was recovered from the wreck of the U.S.S. Ebon Atoll, a U.S. Navy Missile Cruiser, sunk off the coast of Alaska in 2066 with all hands lost. The cutting edge vessel's loss was due to a nuclear torpedo strike from the U.S. Navy Submarine, the U.S.S. Interference during the Anchorage Campaign. The submarine mistook the cruiser for an enemy vessel during radio silence and sunk it before obtaining visual confirmation. This ranks as one of the most tragic disasters in U.S. Naval History since World War II."
  6. Point Lookout loading screens: "Point Lookout remained very rural and isolated until the Isla Negra real estate company purchased land and began developing new homes and attractions."
  7. People's Bank of Point Lookout terminal entries; terminal
  8. Fawkes: "Wake up... time to die!"
    (Fawkes' dialogue)
  9. The Art of Fallout 3, Robots p. 45: "Emil's input on every robot was "make it more like Robby the Robot!" and this was the mind-set we had in approaching the various mechanical creatures in the world. The Protectron is an original design that went through many iterations before settling on something that does have the vintage character of Robby, and we think he captures the quintessential 1950's robot character more than any other."
  10. Alphonse Almodovar: "All right. Just remember one thing. We need a doctor, not a deadbeat. Fail to meet my expectations, and there will be repercussions."
    (Alphonse Almodovar's dialogue) Note: This line is spoken during the transition between the quest Baby Steps and Growing Up Fast.
  11. The Lone Wanderer: "Got any Chems? I could really use a fix."
    Preston: "You can get that crap down at A Quick Fix. It's in the market. I'm a doctor, not a dealer. I'll fix you as best I can if you're hurt."
    (Preston's dialogue)
  12. Hubris Comics terminal entries; Hubris Comics receptionist terminal, Release Schedule


  1. 1984: Part 3, Chapter 4, george-orwell.org
  2. https://youtu.be/T2OxO-4YLRk?t=568
  3. https://www.escapistmagazine.com/junktown-dog/
  4. Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition p. 353: "[2E.01] Zapp's Neon Signs
    You should be instantly familiar with Zapp's actual neon signs, as the Fiends have welded many of them together to form impassable perimeter walls. The actual building is a graveyard of ancient signs, including the feet of a Tall Boy statue. Inside, expect more Fiends, and additional traps."
    (Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition Tour of the Mojave Wasteland)
  5. Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition pp.428-429: "14.06: TOWNHOME (MCCLELLAN HOUSEHOLD)
    "Read Children Bedtime Poem"
    He heads to the bunk-bed room, and reads to the two tiny skeletons:
    This is a poem by Sara Teasdale (1919). Also used in the Ray Bradury short story, "There Will Come Soft Rains" from the Martian Chronicles).
    (Fallout 3 Game of the Year Edition Tour of the Capital Wasteland)
  6. Joel Burgess on Twitter: "So, example: I think the easter egg I'm most proud of is the McClellan house in Fallout 3. I won't detail it in full here, but it's a location full of references to Ray Bradbury, and a specific story in the Martian Chronicles."
  7. There Will Come Soft Rains at Wikipedia
  8. Joel Burgess on Twitter: "If you know the source material, the name of the family, the address, the dead dog, the poem the robot reads... all big nods to Bradbury. The house itself basically mirrors Bradbury's story. It's a glaringly obvious homage if you get the reference."
  9. Emil Pagliarulo on Twitter: "May have been up way too late (too early...) playing Phantom Liberty. It's basically Escape from New York, and I am SO down.
    I'm reminded of the Pitt DLC for Fallout 3. The Infiltrator gun was directly inspired by Snake Plissken's Mac-10! 🤓 #EFNYFTW"
  10. Gallery of Abraham Lincoln's real life Henry rifle.
  11. Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition pp.234-235: "THE LIFE OF BRYAN
    Backtrack out of the Metro Tunnels, across Grayditch, and north to the diner where Bryan is still hiding in his Pulowski Preservation Shelter. He thanks you with glee at your heroics, and begins to wander the streets if you don’t talk to him about finding him a permanent home. He excitedly remarks that he has a cousin Vera who lives on a giant rusting ship called Rivet City.

    While you’re away looking for his accommodation, he buries his father and cleans up the mess in his house. You now have a choice of endings to this quest:

    “Find a home for Bryan Wilks” begins.
    1. You can stay in Grayditch, telling Bryan you don’t want to look for a home he can move to, and end the quest now (without the Karma bonus or penalty of options 2 and 4).
    2. You can travel to Rivet City, as Bryan suggests, and seek out Vera Weatherly at the Weatherly Hotel. She’s more than happy to take Bryan in. Return to Grayditch and tell him; he moves there soon after you depart (you don’t need to accompany him). The quest ends.
    3. You can journey to Little Lamplight, and meet with Mayor MacCready. Use Speech or Child at Heart to convince him to let Bryan stay with him. Head back to Grayditch and speak with Bryan; he’s moderately happy, and moves to Lamplight. The quest ends.
    4. Or, you can befriend the Slavers in successfully completing Miscellaneous Quest: Strictly Business, gain an audience with Eulogy Jones and sell Bryan to him! Jones offers 100 Caps, but you can use Speech and raise the price to 300 Caps. Take the Collar from Jones, return to Grayditch, and convince Bryan to wear it. The quest ends, and a little piece of your soul dies.
    5. Finally, once you find a home for Bryan, you can visit him and ask how he likes his new life. Depending on where you placed him, isIn-game spelling, punctuation and/or grammar responses range from joyful to heart-wrenchingly less than joyful. If you sent him to Paradise Falls, you won't find him if you try to visit. Perhaps Eulogy sold him?"
  12. https://archive.is/wip/UQOik
  13. The Greatest Day of Your Life, Tuesday at KnowYourMeme