|This page lists well-established cultural references in Fallout 4.|
- The inscription on the back of the flux sensor reads "FLUX SENSOR CM-88B 180924609." This is a reference to the ship in Alien, the USCSS Nostromo (reg. 180924609). 
- When first talked to after completing the Freedom Trail, Glory compliments the Sole Survivor by saying his work on the trail was "Not bad, for a human." This is likely a reference to the same compliment the synthetic Bishop gives Ellen Ripley in the movie Aliens.
The American Revolution
- The standard minuteman weapon is a laser musket, just as the musket was during the revolutionary war.
- John Hancock shares his name with one of the first men to sign the Declaration of Independence, and it is implied that his red frock coat once belonged to Hancock.
- The quest The Battle of Bunker Hill is also named after one of the opening battles of the American Revolution.
The Andy Griffith Show
When fighting a Gunner Colonel Gutsy he will sometimes say "I love the smell of plasma in the morning" which is a reference to the character Lieutenant Colonel Bill Kilgore from Apocalypse Now who says "I love the smell of napalm in the morning."
Newspapers scattered around The Commonwealth display the headline "Way of the Future!" on them, which is the same line Leonardo DiCaprio's character Howard Hughes repeats over and over at the end of the film The Aviator.
One of Codsworth's jokes "Comic Sans, Arial and Papyrus walk into a bar..." is a reference to commonly misused and overused fonts.
- The Lifegiver perk depicts a Vault-Boy in robes, a beard and a halo, much like common depictions of Jesus.
- Ahab, a customized robot found alongside Jezebel in the Headhunting quest of the Automatron add-on. This is a reference to Ahab, king of Israel, and his wife Jezebel.
- In the middle of the Diamond City there is a robot Takahashi, who sells noodles, and the only line he speaks is "Nani ni shimasho ka?," which means "What should we order?" This is the very same phrase (including imperfect grammar) as said by the noodle seller in the "Noodle Bar" scene of the film Blade Runner.
- On the southwest corner of the Mass Fusion containment shed rooftop is the body of a man in a random outfit lying supine in front of a kneeling, deactivated synth. The setup alludes to the 'Tears in rain' scene at the end of the film.
- The SAFE test is an allusion to Blade Runner's Voight-Kampff test, meant to discern whether someone is a human or replicant.
- The art for the Trophy/Achievement Hunter/Hunted invokes Deckard being stalked by a vault boy.
One of the prisoner files in the BADTFL regional office in Charlestown describes a Jake Redds (Resisting Arrest), with a list of personal effects very similar to, but not identical to the effects of Jake Blues in the 1980 movie.
The Book of Abramelin
The mission With Our Powers Combined is a reference to the cartoon Captain Planet. It is said as the Planeteers combine their powers to form Captain Planet.
The Cask of Amontillado
When the Sole Survivor finds General McGann's body in The Castle Tunnels, he is lying next to wine crate containing some bottles of "Amontillado" wine. Opposite him is a skeleton behind a half-built brick wall. These are references to Edgar Allan Poe's famous story The Cask of Amontillado. In addition, if the player character "inspects" the object in their inventory, the name "Montressor" is on the bottle. Montressor was one of the main characters in The Cask of Amontillado. The name "P. Edgar" in smaller print on the bottom of the label is another reference to Edgar Allen Poe. On a side note, Poe was inspired to write the story during his time serving at Fort Independence, also known as The Castle.
The inspiration for the Edgar Allen Poe's tale of revenge comes from the Castillo de San Marcos fort in Saint Augustine Florida. The real life fort, and the events which occurred there, are very similar in appearance to The Castle. In July, 1784 Colonel Garcia Marti, took command of the fort, and brought his much younger wife Delores along with him to his duty post. Delores fell in love with a young Captain Abela. The fort had just been returned to Spain from England and was undergoing repairs. When Colonel Marti caught his wife Delores with Captain Abela, he walled them into a thick wall in the fort's basement, and told his garrison that his wife had returned home and that Captain Abela had been reassigned to Cuba.
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
The River of Quantum found in the Nuka World World of Refreshment ride references the river of chocolate featured in the children's book Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (and the two films based on it). This reference is reinforced on a terminal entry inside the ride that encourages drinking right out of the river, as the chemical makeup of Quantum kills germs and resists contamination. In the book, a character is scolded for drinking from the chocolate river and potentially contaminating the chocolate.
The Bar from the 1980's American Sitcom Cheers is by the Boston Commons as Prost bar. Inside is riddled with references to the series, which was set in Boston. The word "prost," after which the in-game bar is named, is german for "cheers."
One of the new flavors of Nuka-Cola added in the Nuka-World add-on is "Newka-Cola." This is a reference to "New Coke", the unofficial title of a reformulated version of Coca-Cola released in 1985. In response to Pepsi outselling Coca-Cola, the Coca-Cola company changed the flavor of Coca-Cola slightly in an attempt to boost sales. Public backlash soon forced them to revert back to the old formula, which ironically resulted in Coca-Cola outselling Pepsi by more than double in the first six months of the reversal.
Codsworth's Many Names
|Amir||The Kite Runner|
|Ares||?God of War? (reference?)|
|Atticus||To Kill a Mockingbird|
|Batty||Blade Runner / Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?|
|Biff||Back to the Future|
|Bort||The Simpsons Episode 107 Itchy & Scratchy Land.|
|Buffy||Buffy the Vampire Slayer|
|Capable||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Castle||The Punisher and Castle|
|Cena||John Cena, WWE Wrestler|
|Cha||Jangjoon Cha, Fallout 3 animator|
|Cormac||Cormac McCarthy, author of The Road|
|Corwin||The Chronicles of Amber|
|Cummings||Jim Cummings, Fallout and Fallout 4 Voice Actor|
|Dag||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Deckard||Blade Runner / Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?|
|Deschain||The Dark Tower (Stephen King)|
|DiMaggio||John DiMaggio, prolific voiceactor|
|Denton||JC Denton Deus Ex|
|Erectus||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Everdeen||The Hunger Games|
|Fragile||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Furiosa||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Goose||Top Gun and Mad Max|
|Hopgood||Ahn Hopgood, Fallout 3 developer|
|Humungous, Humungus||Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior|
|Immortan||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Imperator||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Indiana||Indiana Jones series|
|Jangjoon||Jangjoon Cha, Fallout 3 animator|
|Katniss||The Hunger Games|
|Korben||The Fifth Element|
|Leeloo||The Fifth Element|
|McFly||Back to the Future|
|Michonne||The Walking Dead|
|Nourmohammadi||Paris Nourmohammadi, Fallout Shelter brand manager|
|Picard||Star Trek: The Next Generation|
|Plisskin||Escape From New York|
|Purkeypile||Nathan Purkeypile, Fallout 3 world artist|
|Rictus||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Riddick||Pitch Black et al.|
|River||Firefly and Doctor Who|
|Robb||A Song of Ice and Fire / Game of Thrones|
|Shinji||Neon Genesis Evangelion|
|Slit||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Snake||Metal Gear and Escape From New York and (taken together with Vargas) Wasteland|
|Spider||Transmetropolitan (taken together with Jerusalem)|
|Stark||Iron Man and A Song of Ice and Fire / Game of Thrones|
|Sterling||Archer (taken together with Archer)|
|Toast||Mad Max: Fury Road|
|Tyresse||The Walking Dead|
|Weyland||Alien series (taken together with Yutani)|
|Wez||Mad Max 2: The Road Warrior|
|Whitey||Whitey Bulger (taken together with Bulger)|
|Yutani||Alien series (taken together with Weyland)|
|Zdana||Christopher Zdana, Fallout 4 world artist|
|Ziggy||Ziggy and The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and the Spiders from Mars|
Comics Code Authority
The boot-up screen of the Pip-Boy 3000 Mark IV has 64kb of RAM and 38911 bytes free, just like the Commodore 64.
A character named Hawthorne resides inside the Dugout Inn. He warns against encounters with the Institute synths, a friendly vault, and how he has "a bad feeling" about exploring the pre-War ruins of Salem, found in the northeastern-most portion of the map. This is a reference to John Hathorne from the Salem Witch Trials.
In the southern areas of Bradberton in the Nuka-World add-on, there is a small house with a Chinese officer sword sticking into a mound of ash in a corner. This mound can be kindled into a fire, upon which stimpaks fall from the air, similar to the bonfires of the Dark Souls series.
Deus Ex: Invisible War
NPCs may occasionally say "Rip 'em to shreds!" which is a reference to a line in the game Deus Ex: Invisible War repeated (quite often) by spectators to the caged greasel matches. Mark Lampert worked on Invisible War, handling all voice recording and editing before moving on to work as the audio director for Fallout 3 and Fallout 4.
In Sergeant Dave Mallory's terminal, Log Entry 10/22/27 refers to policemen named Willison and Gibbs. Willison is noted as causing property damage, while Gibbs is noted as risking his life. Bruce Willis played an NYPD officer named John McClane in the Die Hard franchise, while Mel Gibson played LAPD officer Martin Riggs in the Lethal Weapon franchise. The character of John McClane tends to cause a great deal of property destruction when stopping the bad guys.
In the intro, there is a short scene of a meeting room with a large circular table with a diorama of a mushroom cloud in the center, and a man with his hand gripped tensely on the nuclear hotline. The set design, lighting and general scenario are a reference to Stanley Kubrick's 1964 comedy Dr Strangelove.
Mr. Goodfeels produces the Daleks' famous refrain "Exterminate" when set to guard mode.
The Elder Scrolls: Arena
A telephone pole just east of Sanctuary outside of the robotics disposal ground reads TES 01 PPL 364946. In March of 1994, TES1 was released.
Sweet rolls can be found throughout the game, such as in the East Boston Police Station on the desk of a detective. This is a play off the situation given for character creation in Arena and subsequent Elder Scrolls games.
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim
The cover of one Taboo Tattoos magazine has the iron helmet from The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. The iron helmet is an armor piece from the game that was made famous by being featured heavily in the marketing of the game as being the chosen headgear of the "Dragonborn."
Crippling a raider's leg may cause them to groan about a "bullet in the knee." The specificity and wording of "the knee" instead of "my knee" makes it similar to the often-repeated Skyrim town guard dialogue and subsequent meme: "I used to be an adventurer like you. Then I took an arrow in the knee..."
Gun Fu is a reference to Gun-Kata from the motion picture Equilibrium, a discipline of fighting in close quarters with a pistol.
The main character in Equilibrium, Preston (also a name used in Fallout 4), goes to Freedom in order to find the underground. After doing so, he aids them in taking down Father. Similarly, in Fallout 4, one follows the Freedom Trail in order to find the Underground Railroad, helping them (potentially) in taking out Father.
In the very beginning of the game, the news reporter on the TV will begin a segment on local baseball news, and start his talk by saying "And now for something unquestionable, inescapably... American," which John Henry Eden also says on the Enclave Radio in Fallout 3.
Fallout 4 shows a pre-War motorcycle company named "Lone Wanderer," this being inherent for on every motorcycle found in the game has "Lone Wanderer" on their side, plus billboards showing off the name of the old company. There is also a perk called "Lone Wanderer," as well as a hair style option. These are all references to the name of the player character in Fallout 3.
Robert Joseph MacCready, the character you meet at The Third Rail, is the former mayor of Little Lamplight from Fallout 3. If one decides to hire him, he will occasionally say "Tunnel Snakes rule!," a reference to the Tunnel Snakes from Vault 101. He may also make reference to other areas, such as Little Lamplight or Vault 87.
In various locations (such as Wicked Shipping Fleet Lockup) there are sets of Wooden blocks with the letters "G," "A," "R" and "Y," usually present with one or more other children's toys. This is a reference to the Gary clones that populated Vault 108.
Vault dwellers in the add-on Vault-Tec Workshop will say lines that also appeared in the mobile app Fallout Shelter, such as, "Who do you think would win in a fight, a lumberjack with tentacle arms or a shark riding a unicycle?"
Flowers for Algernon
Swan's backstory shares many similarities with the character Charlie, who is a mentally disabled janitor that is given a serum which increases his I.Q. However, he eventually starts regressing, and once again becoming mentally disabled.
Full Metal Jacket
In combat, Gunners will occasionally shout, "get some!," in reference to the chopper gunner scene.
In the Nuka-World add-on within the Safari Adventure Welcome Center, Dr. Hein's terminal references Galaxy Quest in Journal Entry 06-02-2077, with polar bears coming out of the Nuka-Gen Replicator "inside out and then exploding." This is in reference to the fate of the alien transported using the digital conveyor as a test in the movie.
Good Will Hunting
In the C.I.T. ruins behind the western entrance there is a chalkboard with a skeleton next to it. On the chalkboard are two 'homeomorphic irreducible trees of degree 10.' This is a reference to the scene in which Will Hunting is trying to solve the problem on the chalkboard in the hallway.
Grand Theft Auto
In the South Boston Police Department, there is an entry on the evidence terminal pertaining to a suspect named Nicole Connelly, who is accused of the crime of grand theft auto. Her name is shortened to "NiCo" in the evidence log entries. Niko Bellic is the name of the protagonist in the 2008 video game Grand Theft Auto IV.
Northeast of Goodneighbor, there is a place called "Pickman Gallery." It is the main site of a quest called "Pickman's Gift" and it is a reference to one of H.P. Lovecraft's short stories, "Pickman's Model." There are several little references to the story throughout both the quest and inside the building.
Dunwich Borers is also a direct reference to "The Dunwich Horror," and also to the Dunwich Building of Fallout 3. The giant face deep inside Dunwich Borers is also a reference to the story "The Shunned House."
The Children of Atom also refer to radiation as the glow on occasion. This references H.P Lovecraft's personal favorites of his work; The Color Out of Space. In this story a farm is inhabited by a color (out of space) referred to as the glow which mutates the body and destroys the brain much like radiation.
Here There Be Monsters
The name of the quest Here There Be Monsters is a reference to a term for a dangerous place on the map. Taken from early maps where unknown or dangerous regions would include drawings of dragons, scorpions or mermaids. See also: Here Be Dragons.
Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull
The beginning of the quest Kid in a Fridge is a reference to a scene in Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, where Indiana Jones survives a nuclear blast by hiding in a lead-lined refrigerator.
In boats all around The Commonwealth there is a man with the same blue jacket and the blue bandana as Robert Shaw's character in the film, along with a machete and a mutant dolphin. A cage similar to the one in the film will also be under the boat.
In Zoe's diary the title of an entry is "Who Protects the Protectron?" This is a reference to Juvenal's "Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?" A phrase popularized as "Who Watches the Watchmen?" in the comic series of the same name.
Inside Listening Post Bravo there is a terminal with the Listening Post Bravo terminal entries written by Sergeant J. P. Renkse, which is a reference to Swedish metal band vocalist Jonas Renkse of Katatonia. Also several lines from the terminal like "D-E-K" is a reference from their album Dead End Kings and lines like "internal void," "dreams are getting darker" and "blood runs so still" are lyrics from one of the album's songs Dead Letters.
The Prydwen shares its name with King Arthur's ship from the Welsh poems 'Preiddeu Annwfn' and 'Culhwch ac Olwen.'
Elder Maxson is somewhat based upon King Arthur.
In the left-most ball return chute of the Back Alley Bowling, between lanes 1 and 2, there are left hand bones, referring to the character Roy Munson losing his hand when it is pushed inside a chute, although in the film it was his right hand.
Ada Lovelace was a mathematician and pioneer in computing who is credited for being the first person to devise an algorithm intended to be run on a machine. Lady Lovelace is a robot programmed for racing.
In Sergeant Dave Mallory's terminal, Log Entry 10/22/27 refers to policemen named Willison and Gibbs. Willison is noted as causing property damage, while Gibbs is noted as risking his life. Bruce Willis played an NYPD officer named John McClane in the Die Hard franchise, while Mel Gibson played LAPD officer Martin Riggs in the Lethal Weapon franchise. The character of Martin Riggs begins the series suicidally depressed due to the death of his wife, and risks his life on a regular basis. Like Sergeant Mallory, Riggs' partner Sergeant Murtaugh often refers to being too old for their activities, and is pondering retirement in at least one of the films.
The Lord of the Rings
As confirmed in the art book and mentioned by Deacon (if you take him into a tunnel area and ask for his thoughts. Claims that you're safe underground because you're far from the Watchers' 'uh... watching eyes'), "the Watchers" are the Ravens. This may be a reference to the ravens who were spies for Sauron in the Lord of the Rings series.
The Scavenger and the Hatch random event is most likely a reference to Lost.
Monty Python and the Holy Grail
Sometimes when Codsworth is hit he says, "'Tis but a scratch!," which is a famous line said by the black knight in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, as well as Deacon 'taunting' a turret, stating "Your mother was a peashooter?," a reference to the French knight in the same movie. 
My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic
Arlen Glass' office, in the Wilson Atomatoys Corporate HQ, contains two terminals which hold references to the television show. Three consecutive logs make nods to three Episodes: "The Last Roundup," "Too Many Pinkie Pies" and "Lesson Zero."
A second terminal mentions Arlen's surprise at a lack of interest in the line of toys in comparison to how it used to be, wondering if he should instead start creating a boy-centric line of collectible, limited edition variants. This could be referencing the primarily male fanbase that cropped up over the show, and the subsequent increase of collectible's licensed to others by Hasbro, whose main reason for rebooting the show, was to sell toys.
Another entry mentions Arlen's ideas; Some include: Different color coats and identifying marks to distinguish between multiple types as well as a line of pegasi and unicorn variants. Also mentioned is the possibility of crystal-coated variants, which could be in reference to the crystal ponies of the show, and their real-world toy counterparts.
When talking to Preston Garvey after completing the main quest line and defeating the Institute, he would congratulate the player character and mention that "it's not sunshine and rainbows from here on out," to which the player character could respond with, "What? No sunshine and rainbows? Next you're gonna tell me that I'm not getting a pony." This is a reference to "Day of Sunshine and Rainbows" in the popular fanfic "Fallout: Equestria" by Kkat, which spawned an entire sub-community within the Brony fandom. Though, it could just be a coincidence.
Mystery Science Theater 3000
The doors within doors in The Mechanist's Lair that require Ada's assistance to unlock share a striking similarity to the doors on the Satellite of Love in the cult TV-show Mystery Science Theater 3000. These doors would open during interludes between the movie shown in each episode.
J. Hodgson was an engineer working for the Vault-Tec Corporation at Nuka-World before the Great War, who was stationed at the Vault-Tec: Among the Stars exhibit. This is likely a reference to Joel Hodgson, the shows creator.
They also resemble and may reference the doors from the opening of the 1960s show "Get Smart"
Toro, the cat mascot of Diamond City's school shares his name with the Playstation mascot.
In the Nuka-World add-on, one of the rooms accessible from the spinning room of the Fun House in Kiddie Kingdom contains a mannequin wielding a combat knife and a skeleton standing in the shower and shielding itself. This scene is a reference to the movie Psycho.
At the end of the quest Reunions, Nick Valentine may quote part of Edgar Allan Poe's The Raven in response to the Prydwen entering the Commonwealth upon exiting Fort Hagen. The line he quotes is "Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there, wondering, fearing..."
The television cameras seen in Gunners plaza, Fort Hagen Command Center and Hubris Comics are identical to the RCA TK11, a monochrome television camera produced by the Radio Corporation of America (RCA) in 1954.
At the RobCo sales & service center, the "RB-2851 SECURITY PROTOCOL 087 / Epsilon-VI Security Alert" is a hidden reference to the original RoboCop movie.
The feral ghouls share similar characteristics to Emil Antonowsky after he was horrifically disfigured by toxic waste. In some ways they actually look like him and move like him as they are barely able to speak which results in them groaning, they also stumble as they are incapable of basic motor functions.
The weapon 'Rockville Slugger' is named after the city of Rockville, the current location of Bethesda Game Studios.
In the Atom Cats quest line, once the Sole Survivor hands in the first part to Rowdy and talks to Zeke, he will mention "...maybe we should really rustle his/her jimmies." This phrase originates from an image macro on the internet that inspired a thread on 4chan sometime later which imitated 50's slang, much like the rest of Atom Cats. The meme has since spread across the rest of the internet.
The TV brand Radiation King refers to Homer Simpson's childhood television set as seen in episode 10 of season 06, "Grampa vs. Sexual Inadequacy."
Star Trek: Voyager / StarCraft
Knight Captain Cade will sometimes say, "Please state the nature of your medical emergency," a reference to the Doctor in Star Trek: Voyager, who uses a very similar greeting when activated in the show, upon which he'll say "Please state the nature of the medical emergency." However, in the video game StarCraft, the medic is quoted as "Please state the nature of your medical emergency." Perhaps StarCraft is making a reference to Star Trek, here - but the wording more implies that Fallout is referencing StarCraft.
Sons of Anarchy
In the BADTFL regional office, which is slightly northwest of Bunker Hill there is a Novice locked terminal (Novice). The "Prisoner 4CA8712" entry features of the prisoner are strikingly similar but the name Opie Hurst is a combination between Opie Winston and his portrayer Ryan Hurst.
The Shining (film)
A tricycle can be found on a red carpet in the center of a corridor inside Parsons State Insane Asylum. It alludes to the famous scene from Stanley Kubrick's The Shining in which Danny Torrance rides his tricycle through the corridors of the Overlook Hotel.
The title of the fourth U.S. Covert Operations Manual is called "Not the Soldiers You're Looking For" which refers to the Jedi mind trick Obi-Wan uses on Stormtroopers during A New Hope.
Car-henge can be found south of Walden Pond.
The PIN "9003" given by Father for full access to his terminal is the one John Connor uses to fraudulently withdraw cash from an ATM in Terminator 2.
In the middle of the lake just up north of The Nucleus, there are two skeletons hanging on a floating door. This setting is a reference to one of the most well-known scenes of the Titanic movie, where the two main characters are using a broken wood panel as a fortune buoy, the skeletons exactly reproducing the setup.
Several paintings found throughout the game feature the likeness of Bethesda employees, such as Todd Howard in the place of Napoleon Bonaparte.
The Truman Show
Vault 118's amenities include an artificial beach, with a large painting of a sailboat sailing on the ocean above it. This references the scene at the end of the film The Truman Show, in which Truman crashes a similar looking sailboat into the wall of the artificial world in which he lives.
United States Marine Corps
At the top of KL-E-0's terminal it reads "Have a Plan to Kill Everyone you Meet," which is one of the 'standards' upheld by the United States Marine Corps, and was said by the U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis 
The Walking Dead
Inside Union's Hope Cathedral there is a hostile ghoul by the name Father Gabe wearing preacher vestments fighting several feral ghouls. This is a reference to the character Father Gabriel from The Walking Dead who survives the zombie apocalypse by hiding inside his church until the main characters find and rescue him.
A tractor can be found crashed into a fence, with a ghoul lying at the front end of the tractor, near a dead settler who's trapped under it. This is a reference to a scene from the first episode of the first season of Telltale Games's The Walking Dead. 
Winter Hill Gang
Edward Winter is based on Boston's notorious mob boss, Howard "Howie" Winter, the second boss of The Winter Hill Gang. Howie Winter was famously put away by (then anonymous) FBI informant Whitey Bulger.
His white hair may also be a reference to Edgar Winter
The Wizard of Oz
In the General Atomics factory in the babies room, wood blocks can be found saying "Xanadu." The name Xanadu was popularized by the poem "Kubla Khan." In this case, the name may be a reference to the name of Charles Foster Kane's mansion in the 1941 film Citizen Kane.
- ↑ USCSS_Nostromo|Alien Anthology Wiki entry for USCSS Nostromo
- ↑ Minutemen
- ↑ United States Declaration of Independece
- ↑ Battle of Bunker Hill
- ↑ Ahab
- ↑ Dr Light
- ↑ IMDb quotes for Monty Python and the Holy Grail
- ↑ http://eyesofageneration.com/RCA_Cameras_TK11_31.php
- ↑ Know Your Meme
- ↑ Wikipedia entry for the Doctor (Star Trek: Voyager)
- ↑ Underground Railroad
- ↑ https://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/James_Mattis
- ↑ https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=77g8Ci9kIHs