The following text is the introductory chapter of the canceled Fallout Pen and Paper d20, released as a free sample by Glutton Creeper Games. Keep in mind that it contains numerous inconsistencies with the established Fallout canon.
The NCR Historical News
Sunday, February 7, 2155
History of The Wasteland
By Jacob Smith
War, war never changes…
If you were able to describe the world we live in to someone from way back in the 21st century, they would have called it “post-apocalyptic”. While not an entirely accurate description, it gets the idea across. All of the great monuments, convenience stores (hell, convenience itself), and the entertainment technology of the 21st century are all gone. The buildings have been morphed into burned out husks, the open land glows with radiation. Any trip outside (and sometimes inside) the fortified walls of any of the larger remaining cities is always met with violence. The Wasteland is overrun with criminals, Radscorpions, and worse.
However, this way of life is not “post-apocalyptic”. You see that would imply some sort of world ending event followed by a Judgment Day/Reckoning and finally a Heaven for the good and a Hell for the wicked. What we received instead was a world changing set of events followed by generations of people just trying to get by. Hell is dished out in any sized portion you could dream of. We live in a time that is merely Apocalyptic.
This is an attempt to set the record straight about how we ended up this way and what we can do about it now. Hopefully this will prove to be a useful reference for those wanting to catch a peek of the things that are waiting for them outside.
So…let’s start at the beginning; The Great War.
The idea of conquest in the name of riches is nothing new. Even a quick glance back through history will reveal a very basic pattern. Winner takes all, to the victor go the spoils, you snooze, you lose; this is the first lesson of history. The Roman empire, the British empire, the Third Reich, even small scale land grabs such as Iraq’s invasion of Kuwait were all fueled by the desire to control resources.
The second lesson is a little harder to pick up on, but it’s there. Sometimes being the victor, maintaining victory or even the fight itself is simply self-destructive. You end up spending or destroying the very riches you were trying to gain.
By the mid-21st century the riches that Man had usually waged war over had grown from the simple list of gold, ports, slaves, and arable land. This list now included oil, coal, lumber, and technology. And when these things started getting scarce, people began to become very afraid.
Like many impending crises, the dwindling of the Earth’s natural resources went largely unnoticed by the general population.
That is until a televised documentary about the tapped out oil fields in Texas put the issue front and center in everyone’s living room. It did not take long for the rising panic to cause world leaders to take overt actions (despite attempting to deal with the problems in quiet, ignorable ways for years).
The United States began laying down economic sanctions against Mexico using the cover story that the government of Mexico was unstable and was therefore a threat to the U.S.’s national security. The real reason for stirring up trouble was, of course, to create a politically viable reason to send in American troops to secure the oil refineries and other North American business concerns. Despite this rather open case of “appropriation”, the Resource Wars kicked off in earnest in the Middle East and Europe.
The European Union had begun military actions against the Middle East in response to rising fuel costs. Fully prepared to fight to the death for their oil and land, the nations of the Middle East launched counter attacks. Before long, the entire Earth was engaged in a war seemingly without resolution.
The U.S. began sending an ever-increasing amount of troops to Alaska to secure the oil reserves. Tempers flared between Canada and the U.S. over this issue. Meanwhile, the conflict between Europe and the Middle East devolved into a limited nuclear exchange. These developments lead to the creation of the Vaults.
It did not take long for the oil fields in the Middle East to dry up (effectively ending the war while exhausting both sides). With the world’s greatest deposit of oil gone, countries prepared to fight over the scraps. China, in particular, had its eye on the Alaska oil reserves.
In 2066, China finally invades Alaska. The result is not only a major increase in military hardware (Power Armor was invented to combat Chinese tanks), but also the U.S.’s annexation of Canada. Even as Alaska fell to communist China, The United States managed to tap the last known deposit of petroleum. This deposit is miles beneath the surface of the Pacific Ocean.
The Chinese-American war continued to escalate while the rest of the world crumbled. Food supplies were running out, riots were occurring daily, and there were still no viable solutions on the table.
The U.S. sent Power Armored troops into mainland China, which turns into a fiasco. Fortunately, for the U.S., the American army is able to reclaim Alaska. This victory is short lived. While entrenched in a protracted war with another nation, the domestic situation in the United States became untenable. The entire nation seemed poised for violent revolt. The war with China might have been something of a victory, but any sort of idea of “winning” was long gone.
And that’s when it happened. Someone pushed the button and changed the world. Everything we knew became unraveled in a matter of less than two hours.
On October 23 , modern civilization died in a sea of mushroom clouds and heat. That day was forever engrained in our minds.
In the past, U.S. history’s most powerful events were so immersed in the culture, such as July 4 th, that they were celebrated. The dates they occurred on became a sort of short hand for what they signified and formed a calendar of national identity. Not only did they represent the events, but also the implied context, feelings, and aftermath left in their wake.
This phenomenon was not unique to the U.S. either. Specific dates had special meaning for various countries around the globe. Each culture had its own defined, but separated, collection of events and histories.
October 23, 2077 cut across all national borders. On that day the sky burned, the earth blackened. On that day, all people of all nations were united in a terrifying and deadly maelstrom.
There’s an old saying. “History is written by the winners”. If that’s the case, then history stopped being recorded on October 23, 2077. As the bombs fell and the Vault doors closed, all winners and history began to be erased. Those left behind to tell the story of what happened were merely survivors and history became a folk legend degrading with each generation retelling the story.
Vault City Rogue Press
Tuesday September 5, 2240
A People’s History: Imprisoned safely behind a large vault door…
By Sarah Grey
In 2054, the American government funded an initiative dubbed “Project Safehouse”. The aim of this project was to build strategically located shelters to protect the populace in case of nuclear or biological attack. The beginning of the European-Middle Eastern conflict drove the need for this program.
Each of these 122 shelters were designed to house 1000 people. The people inside would be safely sealed within the Vault’s protective walls for a minimum of 10 years. Or, at least, that’s what the populace was told. The real purpose of the Vaults was far less altruistic, a shocking and terrifying angle we’ll explore later.
The Vaults themselves were large underground structures constructed to withstand any sort of attack. The water and air filtration systems were supposedly impervious to high intensity blasts and were also very efficient at removing toxins and radiation. There were vast supplies of food, government provided entertainment tapes, and survival guides. Arguably, though, the most important resource in the Vault was the G.E.C.K.
The G.E.C.K., or Garden of Eden Creation Kit, was a self-contained device designed to jumpstart terraformation in the post-nuclear war world. The kits contained a small cold fusion reactor, soils, seeds, fertilizer, and basic force field tech. Each Vault was supposed to have two of these units and they were to be deployed as soon as the Vault doors opened. The 460 Holodisks that came with the kit were loaded with numerous how-to guides for construction as well as the full contents of The Library of Congress.
Vault City was essentially grown from one of these kits and remains a singular success in the kit’s use. While not every citizen may agree with all of our government’s actions (and are thusly jailed), we can all agree that the city serves as a symbol of hope for the entire Wasteland. All hail Vault City!
Not all Vaults were as lucky as own ancestral Vault 8 though. Some Vaults, such as Vault 13, did not receive their G.E.C.K. (or maybe they were stolen). Also, since not all 122 Vaults have been found, we can assume that their kits did not work, or that their Vaults did not survive the war.
This goes back to the chilling truth that was brought up earlier. Not all Vaults were supposed to work. In fact, only Vault 8 was designed to neither be without flaw nor hitch. The Government did not create these Vaults as a safe refuge for the nation’s smartest, bravest, richest, most powerful, nor even most famous people. The Vaults were constructed to be a sort of Social Darwinist experiment.
The U.S. government (remnants of which remain to this day, known as The Enclave) had recognized the inevitability of nuclear war and the destruction that it would have on the Earth. Figuring that even if they survived such devastation, there would be nothing left on the entire planet with which to build on. Essentially, all the things that we as a species had waged war over for since we could walk upright would be gone. This was not a problem that a simple G.E.C.K. could solve. The solution was a new planet.
Vault records received by a ceased wanderer’s possession through Holodisks revealed that The Enclave at one time prior to the war had looked into (and possibly accomplished) the creation of an interstellar spacecraft. This spacecraft, of course, only had limited capacity for travelers. Only the strongest and best should be allowed to colonize the human race’s new home. How to choose the said individuals? Enter the Vaults.
Each Vault, with the noted exception of Vault 8, which was used as a control group, was graced with an intentional design flaw. These flaws gave each Vault a unique set of circumstances to which to test the inhabitants. Those deemed worthy (i.e. the survivors) when the Vault doors opened were supposed to be given the invitation to join the self-appointed elite in their journey to the stars.
Some of the Vaults had rather minor challenges set to them, such as Vault 70’s lack of sufficient clothing. While it might have been a source of consternation for the Vaults largely Mormon population, it pales when compared to Vault 68 with its population breakdown of 999 men and one woman, or that of Vault 29’s lack of anyone over the age of 15. Most would agree, however, that the Vault with the worst possible experiment assignment was Vault 12.
Located in Bakersfield, California, Vault 12’s doors were designed to not close. The inhabitants of the Vault were exposed to an extremely high level of radiation. The survivors of this horrible experiment were mutated into ghouls. These violent cannibals rechristened Bakersfield “Necropolis”. These violent cannibals are well known throughout the Wasteland and frighten even the most battle-hardened traveler. There are rumors of a more peaceful Ghoul population that lives in the sewers. One wonders if this is wishful thinking.
These Vaults were presented as the last hope of the human race surviving the war. But, they were nothing more that yet another game played on the public by the power elite. As the war waged and the cities melted, these 4-yard thick walls entombed the hopeful underground.
Meanwhile, the heads of The Enclave waited out the war not in Vaults, but rather the Poseidon Oil Rig, located off the coast of San Francisco. They waited for the day they could enlist those who emerged alive from the Vaults and leave Earth forever.
Something must have happened though. Either the blasts from the bombs or the resulting radiation must have destroyed the spacecraft, or maybe it was not yet complete when the bombs fell. Either way, the plan for colonizing a new planet never came to fruition. Now The Enclave is stuck with the only option available to it: reclaim and reform the United States.
There is, of course, resistance to such a plan.
Vault City Rogue Press
Tuesday September 5, 2240
A People’s History Part 2: From the ashes of nuclear devastation…
By Sarah Grey
In 2098, Vault 8 opened for the first time in 21 years. There were a number of young adults and children who had never seen the outside world before. For them, there was nothing more terrifying and freeing than the idea of open space. For those who remembered what life was like before the war, there was nothing so shocking as seeing that world literally turned to dust, ash, glass, and rubble.
People emerged from their shelters and began trying to piece together some semblance of a working society. Farms began to spring up, basic hunter/gatherer activities were established, and scouting for goods and other survivors were all incorporated into daily life. It did not take long for social phenomena like bottle cap based economies to become a fairly common feature amongst these fledgling villages.
Life was hardly returned to normal, but there were emerging constants that could be relied upon.
Unfortunately, one of those constants was self-defense. While many of the human survivors had been safely hidden from the radioactivity, wildlife was not.
There were giant radscorpions, mutated large rats, fire-breathing lizards, carnivorous plants, and many other creatures to deal with. There were also ghouls, raider hordes, and mutants that threatened life on a daily basis. Not all mutations were the result of radiation.
West Tek, a government sponsored experimental facility, designed a man-made virus called the Forced Evolutionary Virus (FEV) originally intended to create a “super soldier”, for the military before the Great War. FEV had some unexpected side effects and research was violently halted just prior to the war.
Those exposed to F.E.V. were either mutated into brutish, unintelligent giants (provided they survived) or, more rarely, became Super Mutants. The Super Mutant is also large and amazingly strong, but is also immune to radiation and even boasts improved intelligence!
Despite the possibility of good, being achieved with FEV, it can be (and is) used as a weapon of enslavement and terror. There has already been at least one madman who tried to raise his own Mutant army. The risk of abuse of this technology is astoundingly high. While FEV was around prior to the war, very few people knew of it. After the Vaults began to open though, its presence was not something that could be ignored or covered up.
The world that awaited that first generation of people to inhabit the post- war Earth must have seemed as alien as any target plant of the Enclave. Some human traits might reassert themselves (war, economies, vehicles, weapons), but this world was nothing like its predecessor.
Vault 8 was neither the first nor the last Vault to open. Each Vault opened according to its own schedule. Some stayed closed for a mere 10 years and some were intended to open after a staggering 200 years had passed. Since not all of the Vault locations are known, it is possible that some Vaults are still locked.
The NCR Historical News
Sunday, August 13, 2164
Today’s Wasteland: A Survivor’s Guide
By Jonathon Stone
Civilizations struggle to arise…
There are a number of powerful factions and relatively prosperous places in the Wasteland. It is always a good idea to know a bit about them and their histories before shooting your mouth off in a bar in a strange town.
The Brotherhood of Steel, while not large, is probably the most technologically advanced faction in the Wasteland. Secretive and suspicious, this organization worships technology and sees itself as the only group responsible enough to use it. They are not at all involved in maintaining order or delivering justice. Their main goal is to develop tech and consolidate their power.
Roger Maxon founded the Brotherhood in response to witnessing the FEV experiments on prisoners while he was a member of the U.S. military. Maxon led a revolt at the Mariposa base where the experiments were being carried out. On October 20, 2077 he declared the based succeeded from the U.S.A. This was a mere three days before the bombs fell. Amazingly, the radiation levels around the base were fairly low. Maxon led his men to Lost Hills and formally founded the Brotherhood. Their influence has spread considerably since then. However, given their xenophobic and secretive nature, their growth has been eclipsed by other factions.
The Eastern Brotherhood of Steel, a splinter group of the main force, was formed in the Chicago area. This group had argued for the sharing of technology and recruitment of new members to the fold. After being rebuked, this small sub-faction of the Brotherhood was sent east to observe and report Super Mutant activity. Their airship crashed during a storm. The survivors formed this break away faction and began operating independently of the Brotherhood of Steel. Holodisks reports indicate that this Eastern Brotherhood of Steel, while more open minded in sharing technology, rule with an iron fist.
Like The Brotherhood of Steel, The Enclave’s roots extend far beyond the Great War. The Enclave was at one time a faction within the U.S. government. This group was the power elite within the power elite. Not only did they have the power and resources that came with running one of the most powerful nations on Earth, they had every large corporation (such as West-Tek) in their pockets. After 2077, The Enclave had to change its focus and aim for some newer goals. There have been rumors of people disappearing and strange machines flying in the air near west coast.
Rounding out the pre-Great War societies that survived the nuclear onslaught are the Hubologists. Founded by Dick Hubbell, Hubologists see their life’s mission as repairing a pre-war space shuttle in order to relocate (or something) to a large wheel in the sky. No one else, of course, has ever heard of or seen this great wheel. Still, the Hubologists believe.
There is some evidence that point to Dick Hubbell having invented the religion as a hoax in order to scam money. However, since there is so little unbiased information about Mister Hubbell still in existence, no one can say authoritatively if that is the case. Most people do, however, agree that Hubology is strictly for crazies. Despite their fervor and weirdness most do seem to be relatively harmless. Especially when compared to…just about anyone else you might run into in the Wasteland.
In addition to dangerous and powerful groups, the Wasteland has a number of dangerous and powerful places. Primary amongst these would be the NCR, or New California Republic. Comprised of 5 states (Shady, Maxon, Hub, Los Angeles, and the Glow). NCR boasts a population of over 700,000, which makes it clearly the largest power center in the former United States. The capitol of city is also known as NCR and has a population of over 3000 people itself.
Originally founded by the inhabitants of Vault 15, NCR had an unparalleled growth rate. In addition to its high population and strong economy, NCR is known for its representational democratic government and the outlawing of prostitution, public intoxication, and gambling amongst other things. Some of the positions that can be found in the government are Senators, Governors, Council people, and a President. They serve the greater good of the NCR while maintaining state’s rights.
NCR has a very large and fully outfitted army with which to protect its borders and is also one of the more “civilized” areas. With the freedom of religion and laws designed to protect the citizenry, NCR (on the surface at least) is a desirable and safe place to live. Some might argue that the strict laws prohibiting alcohol, drugs, and any number of natural forms of entertainment actually make the area oppressive and dull.
There is some amount of conflict between the states that make up the NCR and its capitol. These disagreements are mostly centered on control of trade routes and their tariffs/taxation rights. Some of these debates can get quite heated and a number of the states view themselves as rivals, but there does not seem to be any indication that there will be any sort of major schism in the near future.
Without a doubt, NCR polar opposite is New Reno. With no central government and certainly no laws prohibiting drugs, booze, gambling, and “escorts”, New Reno is a depraved wanderer’s paradise. You can have all the fun you could ever imagine in New Reno, if you’re prepared to pay the price. Before the Great War, gambling towns such as Reno, Nevada were considered to be recession proof. No matter how bad things were doing in the world, people still liked to throw dice, drink a few too many, catch a show, and maybe even pay for a night’s worth of amore. New Reno proves that nothing, not even the end of the world can erase humanity’s drive for cheap thrills and reasonably priced deals. In its own way, it’s kind of beautiful.
New Reno is not so much policed or governed as it is “kept in line” by four mob families. The families Salvatore, Wright, Mordino, and Bishop each have their own turf and each have a hand in making sure the tourists keep coming. Anyone that makes a nuisance of his or herself and is thought to be driving away business will probably end up in Golgatha. For those not in the know, Golgatha is a large graveyard outside of town.
Another popular (somewhat involuntarily so) draw to New Reno is Jet, a highly addictive mind-affecting drug created in 2241. This powerful stimulant was invented right there in the smallest big city in the Wasteland. A person on a Jet bender could not only gamble for several days without any kind of sleep, but could also be convinced to do just about anything to get more Jet. And while Jet can be found in most any settlement now, there is no Jet like New Reno Jet.
There are some rumblings that the ruling families, especially the Mordino, are eyeing nearby Redding as a new property to expand into. This has, of course, been met with nothing but denials. Just off the bay in northern California lies San Francisco. This city is unique for many reasons. One of the main ones have to do with it’s re-founding.
Most of the settlers in San Francisco are descended from a Chinese submarine crew that ran aground off the coast sometime after the Great War. These people are known as the Shi. A large number of the rest are Hubologists. In addition to this strange collusion of people are small populations of artists, misfits, ex- military, and criminals.
According to records, this mix provides San Francisco with an atmosphere very much like the one it has during the pre-war era. The city itself exerts a bit of mob rule (mostly handled by the Shi).
San Francisco seems to pay NCR no mind and by all appearances just keeps trucking along fine without their influence. Martial arts play a large role in the culture of the city. There are large demonstrations and rivalries between schools. These exciting and often deadly encounters only add to the mystery and intrigue of the place.
Finally, there is Vault City. While Vault City is as active and organized as anything within the NCR, Vault City citizens are not as hung up on false and antiquated senses of morality and “freedom”.
Born from the dwellers of Vault 8, Vault City quickly established itself as an advanced and progressive city-state. Vault City’s society is split into different castes (Full Citizens, Servants and Outsiders); we are all given a place in the social order here.
Within the walls only Citizens are allowed and those who had earned a day pass (diplomats, heroes, and the like) inside of our walls. The rest of the rabble could stay out in the Courtyard where they could peddle their wares and do whatever it is they do out there. Most wanderers who have managed to finagle a day pass have noted that the Courtyard is more lively and chaotic and fun. However, it is also more dangerous and dirty. Vault City is not favorable to chaos and grime…or interesting times.
While these cities might be some of the most powerful and influential, they are hardly the only cities worth seeing. Redding, Klamath, Necropolis, and Junktown are all worth seeing. As harsh and unstable as the Wasteland seems to be, there are some amazing sights to be had out there.
These towns and cities are at once a depressing reminder of how far and fast we as a species fell into the abyss and a symbol of hope. As each city gets rebuilt, or a new city gets founded, we are lifted up. We can build as well as destroy. We are not just manufactures of death. At the same time they force us to look at what we have done. Where we are now proud to merely have shelter, we once had thriving metropolises. Mass communication, great works, decent roads, vehicles…these were abundant. Now we are forced to use their pieces in order to merely get by. It could be worse.
The Redding Rag
Fable # 12
Legendary Heroes of the Wastes
By Mason Storm
The Vault Dweller, he doesn’t even need a name.
He is a savior, villain, and legend all in one. What he represents is so large and so vastly overshadows his actual life, one wonders if a true history of his exploits could ever be written. Fortunately for us, history is dead and we have the folk tale to live with. Not much is known about him prior to the events that turned him into a symbol. He was born in Vault 13 and by what little accounts there are; he was a more than capable person, but hardly a hero. Like many legendary champions, The Vault Dweller was just caught up in circumstances beyond his control and yet was able to master these circumstances. Sometime around 2161, Vault 13’s water chip broke.
The leader of that Vault, called the Overseer, chose The Vault Dweller seemingly at random to be the one sent out into the Wasteland in order to find a working chip. Since Vault 13 was supposed to remain sealed for 200 years, the Overseer did not want to open the doors and send out a party. He decided that sending merely one member of the tribe would be acceptable.
The Vault dweller quickly found himself in a harsh world full of injustice and exploitative degenerates. Nearly everywhere he went, he was asked to help yet another downtrodden person. Accounts seem to verify that The Vault Dweller did make some rather morally ambiguous decisions, but generally acted on behalf of the good.
When he arrived in Shady Sands, he was asked to help the town fight the radscorpions who had invested it. Being handy with a gun and having no particular love of radscorpions, he agreed. All in a day’s work for a wanderer, really. But, soon after these beasts had been taken care of, raiders kidnapped, Tandi, the daughter of the town’s leader. The Vault Dweller was again asked to help, even though the problems of this town are not his own and that the town’s leader openly distrusts him. The Vault Dweller set out to complete this quest. Tandi had been kidnapped by the Khans, a raider gang styling itself after the Mongols of ancient history.
The leader of this gang was feared (but none too bright). It did not take long for The Vault Dweller to find him. A local trader who was looking for some adventure and was almost handy in a fight joined the Vault Dweller in the conquest of the Khans.
The resultant bloodbath was amazing. Tandi was safely returned to her town. The Vault Dweller told her about Vault 13 to the west and then had to leave. Tandi never forgot The Vault Dweller. Eventually she grew up and became the President of the NCR.
Sometimes, it isn’t just individuals that symbolize a certain zeitgeist, but also friendships. You won’t hear too many stories about The Vault Dweller that don’t include at least a mention of mean ol’ hound called Dogmeat. No one knows exactly how these two became friends. Some stories have the Vault Dweller bribing Dogmeat with iguana-on-a-stick, while others contend Dogmeat mistook the Vault Dweller for his previous owner due to his leather jacket. The only two things that all accounts of their meeting agree upon are that it was in Junktown and Dogmeat had an old man barred from his own home. Resolving this issue was a little easier than fighting raider gangs and soon Dogmeat and The Vault Dweller were traveling the Wasteland together. They fought enemies and kept each other company. It may seem like a simple not at all interesting thing now, but at the time this friendship served a comforting story for those learning to deal with the vagaries and paranoia in this “post-apocalyptic” world. Friendship and loyalty were things a lot of people seemed to have forgotten about.
On or around January 2162, The Vault Dweller reached The Hub. He was successful in his attempts to negotiate with the Water Merchants. This did not save Vault 13, but it certainly helped. What did not help was that someone, or something, was stealing water from Vault 13’s magazine.
Pressing on, The Vault Dweller and companions, ended up in Necropolis (formerly Bakersfield, CA) and somehow manage to recover a water chip. While there, they experience the full spectrum of ghouls that make up Necropolis’ population. It was not a happy time as one of the Vault Dweller’s companions was burned to death via a Super Mutant’s flamethrower.
The Vault Dweller returned home with the water chip. When he told the Vault Overseer about the Super Mutant presence in Necropolis, he was given a new mission.
This time, the Vault Overseer wanted him to dispose of this Super Mutant problem. Most people now consider this a suicide mission. A number of scholars believe that the Overseer knew about the true nature of the Vault project, feared The Vault Dweller was close to finding out, and simply wanted The Vault Dweller dead. In March of that year, The Master sent his army of Super Mutants to raze Necropolis to its foundations.
This forced a confrontation between The Master and The Vault Dweller. For those that don’t know, The Master was a dangerous cult leader whose secret aim was very similar to that of the Enclave’s prior to the Great War.
The Master ran a cult called The Children of the Cathedral who were seemingly out to better mankind’s lot. However, the Children of The Cathedral were actuallysecretly looking to recruit normal humans to serve as operatives. These operatives, if approved, would convert to the Cathedral faith (a mixture of higher callings, social Darwinism, and faux altruism), and would be voluntarily dipped in one of many vats of FEV that The Master had hidden in his converted military base.
When The Vault Dweller arrived back in Necropolis, he saw a burned city that was sadly worthy of its name. One of the survivors told The Vault Dweller that The Master was in hiding in The Boneyard, a city formerly known as Los Angeles.
The Vault dweller, intent on completing his mission, descended on the city with a heart full of fury. However, he did not kill randomly or without strategy. Beneath the cathedral was a special Vault. This Vault was not like the others built by Vault-Tec prior to the War. This Vault was never intended to be used, as it was merely a demonstration model. It was, of course, still used as a shelter when the bombs began to drop. Unlike the other Vaults, this one was abandoned fairly quickly after the War was over. When that happened, The Master moved in.
The Vault Dweller made his way through the Cathedral (and through the disciples within) and began his decent into the Vault underneath. The walls were melded with a sort of sentient flesh.
There were vengeful mutants. Death and mockery of life were everywhere.
At the end of this abysmal journey was The Master himself. No one knows the exact details of what came next. All we do know is that The Vault Dweller emerged alone, The Master was never seen again, and the Children of the Cathedral were broken, scattered to the winds with no direction.
Once this was accomplished, The Vault Dweller set out for Mariposa to dispose of the FEV vats. Using a few connections he had made with The Brotherhood of Steel, The Vault Dweller located the base and destroyed it. This victory came with a high price. Not only was the base full of Mutants and robots that nearly cost The Vault Dweller his life, it had some powerful force field technology that cost him his friend, Dogmeat.
There are stories that he and all of the heroes of our time live in a sort of ghost town that appears and disappears to wanderers on their own long journeys. Such is the power of myth.
When The Vault ‘dweller returned to the Vault one final time, he was met not with a fanfare, but a rebuke. After all of that hard work, sacrifice, and blood to save Vault 13, the Overseer told our hero that he must leave the Vault forever. He was cast out into the Wasteland for no logical reason.
This is part of the supporting evidence that the Overseer was a cog in a greater conspiracy. Undaunted, The Vault Dweller and a number of faithful left the Vault and founded the town of Arroyo. Soon Arroyo was flourishing and strong.
The Vault Dweller took wife and had a daughter with her. The child eventually became the Elder of the tribe. The Vault Dweller wrote his memoirs and settled into the tribal life. All was well, until one day, without warning, he was gone. All that was left behind was the folded Vault Suit and memoirs. Some say that sky spirits took him to the afterlife and other say he just wanted one last chance to journey the Wasteland.
It is telling that The Vault Dweller signed his book of memories as The Wanderer; for that is what he truly was. Our world is both brighter and darker without him in it. Darker because we need more stronger people like him, and brighter because his myth does so much for our spirits.