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Without medical technology, all of us ghouls are going to die off in the next 20 years, anyway.Gordon

Ghouls are mutated humans or animals affected by the phenomenon of ghoulification. In the case of humans, ghouls are sometimes referred to as necrotic post-humans[1] in the Capital Wasteland, but this term does not seem to have been adopted outside of it whatsoever. Despite their zombie-like appearance, the flesh of ghouls is not actually rotten.[2] Intense and prolonged radiation has ravaged their skin, much of their flesh, and in some cases many of their ligaments.[3] Despite their infertility and in some cases mental deterioration, they have greatly extended overall lifespans and are immune to (and sometimes even healed by) background radiation and/or nuclear fallout.[4]


The history of ghouls is a mixture of suffering and plight. The bulk of ghouls emerged as a result of the Great War, although there are cases of some using controlled exposure to radiation to ghoulify themselves and ride out the upcoming war.[Non-canon 1][5] There was also an experimental radiation drug being tested somewhere in the Commonwealth.[6] Its known side effects are why Hancock sought out the last remaining dosage.[7]

New California

Necropolis, the single largest ghoul city in New California until 2162.

In California, ghouls were the first group of survivors to begin rebuilding civilization – the inhabitants of Vault 12 beneath Bakersfield founded the Necropolis in the summer of 2083.[Non-canon 2] Less than a year later, in 2084 Set wrestled control of the settlement from the original overseer and instituted his own reign, characterized by delusions of grandeur.[Non-canon 3] The city would eventually decline, starting with the attack by Unity in 2157, who expected to find an unopened Vault in the ruins of the city. After many ghouls were killed in the assault, Set negotiated peace with the super mutants, after explaining that the ghouls are indeed the vault dwellers. The recovery operation failed, but Unity established a stronghold in the town to ensure Set's cooperation and watch for humans.[Non-canon 4]

It would finally be destroyed and most of its population killed in a retaliatory expedition by the super mutants, sent to the city after the Vault Dweller raided the Vault and recovered the water chip, eliminating the super mutant garrison in the process.[Non-canon 5] This has led to a great migration and the eventual founding of a number of ghoul and ghoul-friendly[8] settlements, including Broken Hills in 2185,[Non-canon 6] the NCR state of Dayglow around 2189,[Non-canon 7][Non-canon 8] and Gecko in 2235. Though problems with equality continue, ghouls are increasingly seen as equal members of society, though their numbers steadily dwindle.[Non-canon 9] Sometime in 2242 marked the end for both Broken Hills and Gecko as they relied on the selling of and using of uranium that was mined.

In the Mojave Wasteland, they can be found in small amounts throughout the region, but no town is completely dedicated to them. There are usually a few ghouls living among humans in various communities performing jobs in order to survive, such as the guard Beatrix Russell and the comedian Hadrian, both of which are in Freeside. The only known community of ghouls in the region is the Bright Brotherhood, a religious faction located in the REPCONN test site, founded and led by an intelligent glowing one named Jason Bright, who wants to leave Earth and go into space to find a "new world," a promised land foretold by Bright himself. There are also several ghoul rangers occupying Ranger Station Echo, implying some level of acceptance of ghouls serving in the NCR. In contrast, Caesar's Legion does not allow ghouls (along with other mutants) within their ranks, but do allow ghouls to live in their territory, such as Raul Tejada who traveled from Two Sun to the Mojave. To Caesar, ghouls and other mutants are irrelevant to his plans to push westward.[Non-canon 10]

In 2277, in the Divide, nuclear warheads triggered by the Courier's delivery of an automated nuclear launch device exploded and triggered rapid ghoulification of the Legion and NCR forces engaged in battle there. The Divide flayed them alive, causing them to become dead men walking – marked for death, sustained only by the intense radiation that permeates the area.[9] As they never appear outside the Divide, due to the necessity of staying near radiation sources to remain alive, the marked men became a legend in the wasteland, like the Sierra Madre, the Burned Man, or the Big Empty.[10]

East Coast

The Slog, one of the most prosperous farms in the Commonwealth and ran entirely by ghouls.

The densely urbanized East had a great concentration of American population and was strongly affected by the nuclear fallout. People who took shelter in areas affected by it experienced radiation poisoning; those who did not die became ghouls. Within a year, the first ghouls began to appear and with them, the first fledgling settlements, like Underworld in Washington, D.C., which existed as late as 2277.[11] Although in areas like Appalachia, ghouls were quickly sought out and exterminated, no matter what relation they may have had with others before they became Ghouls.[12] Another population of ghouls, transformed Chinese operatives stranded on American soil, chose to sequester themselves from the wasteland.

In other areas, like the Commonwealth, ghouls cohabited with humans. The most noticeable example was Diamond City. Ghouls were a part of the city's population from its foundation in the 2130s to the 2282 election. Diamond City was gripped by a wave of racism, thanks to a candidate by the name of McDonough. He ran for the city's mayor on the Mankind for McDonough platform and won the election thanks to the votes of the Upper Stands citizens. After his election, ghoul citizens were evicted. Entire families were thrown out of the city by their human neighbors, straight into the surrounding ruins to perish without a cap to their name.[13] Those that survived scattered across the region. A refugee called Wiseman founded the Slog, the foremost tarberry farm in the Commonwealth.[14]


After the war, a pre-War mall known as Valley Galleria became a haven for ghouls in Appalachia, referred to by survivors as "the Changed."[15] Led by Lucy Harwick, the ghouls sheltering in the Galleria welcomed others like them to travel there and be accepted with "open arms, and more importantly, open hearts."[16] However, because of bigotry associated with feral ghouls, Duncan McKann would murder Lucy Harwick and several others in a single-minded pursuit for revenge.[12]

By 2103, after the mass migrations and settlement of Crater and Foundation, sentient ghouls would make a return with humans. Ghouls would work among groups of humans, such as Eugenie of the Blue Ridge Caravan Company, and Mordecai McCoy would find steady work entering radioactive areas to scavenge goods and a general handyman around The Wayward. Despite the common and vital roles that ghouls would fill, ghouls would still suffer persecution for their appearance and incorrect association with feral ghouls. The Settlers of Foundation would hold the policy of shooting ghouls on sight at the gates because of feral ghoul problems. Once Penelope Hornwright is recruited for the Settlers portion of Wastelanders, she comments on having to wear a full mask disguise in order to enter Foundation. The Raiders of Crater are slightly more tolerant of ghouls among their ranks, but some share an innate bigotry for ghouls, such as Lev who would attempt to make Lucky Lou commit suicide by guilting him that he would become feral someday.[17][18]


Ghouls, both "normal" and Feral, are not only immune to radiation...they are healed by it.Fallout 3 loading screen

Most ghouls were "created" in the Great War of 2077, with the exception of at least two pre-War ghouls, Eddie Winter and Desmond Lockheart. Ghouls are alive during Fallout 76 (2102 - 2103), Fallout (2161), Fallout 2 (2241), Fallout 3 (2277), Fallout: New Vegas (2281) and Fallout 4 (2287). All ghouls live considerably longer than normal humans, though they are largely sterile, so much so that the birth of Monica, an unaffected human child of two ghoul parents, was described as miraculous.[19] The unnaturally long lifespan of a ghoul is also due to a mutation within the autonomic nervous system of certain individuals following exposure to specific combinations of ionizing radiation with wavelengths below ten picometers. Radiation that has such a short wavelength, is known as gamma radiation and is normally lethal to healthy humans in even moderate doses. The mutation in response to gamma radiation that produces ghouls disrupts the normal process of decay in the neurotransmitters along the spinal cord.


High levels of radiation are a crucial factor, but radiation poisoning typically results in death, rather than ghoulification. There are two primary ways in which ghouls can develop from a human. Irradiation and gradual transformation result in ghouls who retain their general human shape, but with a high degree of skin deterioration: Exposed muscle, flaking skin, and damaged connective tissue characterized by the absence of nose and ears.[Non-canon 11] Another is surviving a nuclear blast relatively close to ground zero, suffering burns both thermal and radiation-induced, but surviving. The latter transformation is typically faster and substantially more traumatic for the victim and results in a generally much more horrifying appearance, with exposed bone, asymmetric deformations, and extensive unhealed wounds.[20]

The vast majority of ghouls of both types have developed as a result of exposure during the Great War, but ghoulification is also possible after the War. Camp Searchlight is one such example, with an attack that transformed a majority of the NCR troopers stationed there into ghouls. Camp Searchlight also emphasizes the fact that the nature of the transformation may lead to mental problems. The trauma of transformation can cause a mental breakdown in the victim, causing a rapid degeneration of higher thought processes, causing them to become feral.[21] Moreover, particularly severe irradiation can lead to the creation of luminous necrotic post-humans, or glowing ones with a permanently damaged brain: feral glowing ones are almost invariably hostile.


Dean Domino, a particularly motivated ghoul and talented pre-War singer. The transformation granted its usual longevity, but spared his vocal chords.

The transformation can take anywhere from hours,[22][23] to weeks,[24] to as much as a year, depending on exposure levels.[11] Once it is completed, the ghouls take on the aforementioned appearance, at a rate influenced largely by the manner of their exposure: the more radiation received in a short amount of time causes drastic changes, while symptoms of ghoulification are more gradual with chronic exposure. Ghouls generally experience loss of skin and connective tissue in a manner similar to leprosy, resulting in exposed muscle, blood vessels, and in extreme cases even bone and internal organs.[25] As a rule, ghouls generally lose hair along with the skin, though this varies due to the unpredictable nature of the change.[26][27][28] Vocal cords and the larynx are also usually affected by the change, resulting in a raspy voice – though again, this varies, such as the vocal cords experiencing only minor degradation when ghoulification begins, resulting in a far less raspy voice, compared to those who have experienced it for far longer.[29]

Other results of the change are widespread necrosis,[30] rot,[20] and other degenerative conditions like arthritis,[31] cataracts, and glaucoma.[32][33] Feralization and dementia can happen immediately.[34][35] In fact, this necrosis can be exacerbated by a phenomenon whereby rotting flesh around sweat glands exudes macronutrients, which attract flies that further digest and consume the tissue of the ghoul.[36] Some ghouls may also experience loss of appendages, but the radioactive regeneration allows for them to be reattached and retain functionality.[37]

People who have purposefully turned themselves into ghouls through pre-War procedures, such as Desmond Lockheart and Eddie Winter, escape some of the side effects of ghoulification, keeping most of their hair and having little vocal chord damage, but still suffer from the necrosis of their bodies like other ghouls. Another purposefully turned ghoul is John Hancock, but he suffers from many of the changes noted above.

Exposure to ionizing radiation with wavelengths below 10 picometers triggers a mutation in the spinal cord, halting decay in neurotransmitters and triggering permanent regeneration. Cardiac and respiratory functions continue to function regardless of other damage, extending the lifespan indefinitely unless either system is damaged beyond repair.[38][39]

In addition, the regenerative effects of radiation – in fact, the altered ghoul physiology is boosted in the presence of radiation, resulting in an increased rate of regeneration.[40][41] In certain cases, such as with the marked men of the Divide, intense radiation can help a ghoul survive even lethal injuries, such as flaying.[42][43]

The mutated physiology still requires ghouls to provide adequate nourishment for their systems, including providing water[44] and food. The loss of the sense of smell allows ghouls to eat food humans would consider repulsive,[45] which coupled with the resilience of their digestive tract allows them to subsist on any edible foodstuff.[Non-canon 12][46] As an added benefit, a ghoul is also immune to most common diseases that affect unmutated humans. However, that doesn't mean ghouls are immune to all diseases, and diseases of the mind (not just feralization) can still affect a ghoul.[47] A side-effect of the mutation is that recreational drugs like Jet have a diminished effect on their physiology, requiring double doses or increased potency to work.[48] This is likely because of the regenerative properties of ghoulification. The neurotransmitters that would be firing at an accelerated rate during the use of a drug like Jet in a normal human would be quickly dealt with in the ghoul's body. This likely applies to all types of drugs - stimulants and depressants - that are not radiation cures or preventers.

While ghouls require food and water, the regenerative properties of their mutated bodies can sustain them in the absence of either. In most cases, this coincides with the transformation into a feral ghoul. However, there are three known cases where prolonged isolation with no air, food, or water had no deleterious effects on the ghoul such as in the cases of Coffin Willie, buried in a coffin for months,[49] Woody, who was exhibited as a mummy for weeks while in a state of deep sleep,[50] and Billy Peabody, who survived the Great War trapped inside a refrigerator, surviving for 210 years.[51]

Ghouls retain their normal cognition and are generally no different than humans in terms of intellect. In fact, many ghouls benefit from their extreme lifespan and are capable of amassing skill and knowledge far beyond the ability of regular humans.[52][53] By extension, ghouls retain their sex drive[54] and some humans have a ghoul fetish.[30] Regardless of their capacity for intercourse, ghouls are sterile and cannot procreate. Any children they may have are either adopted[55] or were mutated into ghouls alongside their parents.[56]


A pair of feral ghouls in the Commonwealth.

However, turning into a ghoul can bring about severe complications. The degeneration into a feral state (referred to as ferocious post-necrotic dystrophy) is not fully understood. It is known that it is a result of a degeneration of the brain (which is not affected by the regenerative mutation of the spinal cord) and emerges following the atrophy of higher brain functions, accompanied by an increased level of aggression and appetite. When the loss of capacity for thought is complete, a ghoul is considered feral. The factors that may cause a ghoul to enter this state are unclear, but anti-social or isolated ghouls are more susceptible to it.[21]

A lack of isolation does not consistently result in avoiding transformation, however. Several examples of individuals living in groups yet still transforming can be seen, such as the co-workers and partner of Oswald Oppenheimer, while he himself did not transform.[57] The crew of Captain Zao succumbed to turning feral aboard the Yangtze while the captain retained his faculties.[58]

Exposure to intense radiation may also be a factor – feral ghouls have no body heat and emit lethal levels of radiation, which sustain their functions. This allows them to survive for centuries, of which the process is irreversible.[59][60]

The transformation of a ghoul into a luminous necrotic post-human, or glowing one, occurs when the organism of a ghoul ceases filtering radioactive particles from the blood, resulting in bioaccumulation and the gradual appearance of bioluminescence as a result.[61][Non-canon 13] Luminous ghouls are usually feral, due to the damage to their nervous system and the time it takes to accumulate the radiation,[61] though ghouls uncommonly develop luminescence before degenerating into a beast-like state, like the glowing ones of Necropolis, the Gecko reactor, Jason Bright, Oswald Oppenheimer, and Hank.

Non-human ghouls


Ghoulification is not unique to humans and is a possible mutation for various families of animals. Animal ghouls seem to share all the disadvantages and advantages of becoming a ghoul as a human does, this includes rapid hair loss, the deterioration of the epidermis, severe cataracts and glaucoma of the eyes, elongated life-spans, as well as transforming into glowing ones through extended exposure to radiation.

Examples of affected species can be found throughout post-War America from New California to the East Coast. Known pre-War individuals include Ruzka, a circus bear that was performing around the Point Lookout area, and the Beast of Beckley, a legendary wolf known to roam Appalachia. Roaming Alpha Mongrels can also be found to be wearing dog collars from their previous domesticated lives. Even non-native species, such as gorillas may become ghoulified. It is also believed by some caravan guards that blue ghoul whales exist.[62]

Below is a full list of creatures that have ghoulified:


The attitude towards ghouls in the wasteland varies from acceptance, through apathy, to outright hostility. This is predicated on a variety of factors – for example, in New California of the mid-22nd century, ghouls were almost legendary creatures, as their population had isolated itself within Necropolis, leading to the rise of rumors about terrifying zombies living within its borders.[63] The fact that patrols that entered the city rarely returned alive (as was the case with two patrols Killian Darkwater sent into it) did not help.[64] Of course, some daring souls (like Keri Lee of Crimson Caravan) managed to make inroads and secure lucrative trade relationships with the ghouls of the city (or skags, as the Hubbers referred to them).[65]

Vault City is a textbook example of racial prejudice at work. Since the atomic reactor in Gecko did not operate properly,[66] waste from the power plant started leaking into the local groundwater around 2239[67] and it eventually led to serious poisoning of the whole reservoir.[68] Harold learned that a hydroelectric magnetosphere regulator was needed for the repair job, but no such part could be found in Gecko, so attempts were made to contact Vault City but the messengers were shot on sight by the Vault City Guard, marking the beginning of an official policy to shoot all ghouls on sight.[69] The situation became worse, when Vault City residents started to believe that the ghouls had deliberately poisoned the groundwater, accusing them of terrorism against Vault City and demanding that they should be punished.[68] The First Citizen of Vault City, Joanne Lynette, even tried to hire someone who was willing to help stopping the Gecko problem by any means necessary.[70]

In regions away from New California, ghouls likewise experience a variety of attitudes. For example, in the Mojave Wasteland, ghouls are generally seen as equals and share both the misery of poverty[71] and the prominence of the stage[72] on equal terms with humans. Of course, not everyone is as egalitarian as the people of Freeside and New Vegas. The New Vegas Strip doesn't permit the entrance of ghouls or other mutants unless under the supervision of a human visitor,[73] or with permission from a higher-up.[74] The Bright Brotherhood is a cult centered around Jason Bright, formed in response to suffering its members experienced at the hands of humans.[75] In some areas, ghoul lynchings also happen,[76] while in others ghouls are considered a possible threat and are fired upon – like in Washington, D.C., where Lyons' Brotherhood of Steel members will routinely open fire on ghouls sighted in the city.[77]

A lot of anti-ghoul sentiment is caused by inexperience and ignorance. For example, some believe ghouls to be carriers of disease, without ever having examined one,[78] while others believe that all ghouls are inevitably bound to become feral and pose a threat to people around them, a sentiment with a lot of truth to it.[79] This was the basis for the eviction of ghouls from Diamond City, based on prejudice.

Sometimes, the situation is not helped by the ghouls themselves. Of particular note was the cause of Roy Phillips, a disgruntled ghoul from the Capital Wasteland, obsessed about seizing Tenpenny Tower for himself. His increasingly threatening behavior, when refused entry by Chief Gustavo, led to suspicions that he might attack the Tower directly,[80] only confirming the security chief's belief that all ghouls are walking ticking bombs.[81]

That said, misconceptions and prejudice are not unique to humans.[82] Apart from the hateful Roy Phillips, even the seemingly tolerant inhabitants of the Underworld have shown a racist side when some of them threatened Doctor Barrows over his research into ghoulification and its causes, claiming that "ghouls are ghouls and humans are humans."[83] Fortunately, not all ghouls are like that and many long for their pre-mutation life and seek ways to reverse the changes, no matter how unlikely the means.[84]

Some polities take steps to protect ghouls and other mutants, like the New California Republic, which extended legal protection to them in 2205[Non-canon 14] and allowed a significant number of ghouls of both genders to serve in the ranks of the New California Republic Rangers, with the bulk of them being accorded veteran status due to their resilience and experience in combat.[85]


Necrotic post-human (ghoul)

A ghoul in Underworld named Charon

Commonly referred to as ghouls, these men and women are no different from regular humans when it comes to intellect or personality. Ghouls possess the ability to talk, and they normally wear clothing, as well as carrying and using weapons. Ghouls often refer to humans as "smoothskins."[86]

These ghouls also find terms such as "shuffler" and "zombie" to be offensive.[87][88][89][90] The phrase is also used to threaten ghouls.[91][92] Those bigoted towards ghouls use the two phrases interchangeably, stating that ghouls should be killed before the "go zombie" due to radiation destroying their brains.[93][94] Some ghouls have embraced the phrase, such as those in Set's Zombies gang.[95] Similarly, Raul Tejada uses the word zombie when referring to a nickname of his, "Raul the Ghoul, the zombie vaquero of Mexico City."[96]

Hostile intelligent ghouls, violent even without provocation, do exist, the most noteworthy being the Chinese remnants, Chinese spies, soldiers, and special forces units trapped in the United States following the Great War. Remnant forces are wholly unaware (or perhaps in denial) of the worldwide nuclear destruction that has occurred and believe that they are still in a state of war, continuing to follow old objectives sent to them pre-War by the People's Liberation Army.

Luminous necrotic post-human (glowing one)

A sentient glowing one, Jason Bright

Main article: Glowing one

A highly irradiated ghoul that has absorbed enough radiation to develop bioluminescence, glowing a ghastly green color that's especially visible in the dark. They are colloquially known by most as "glowing ones," and are often considered outsiders even by other ghouls. Glowing Ones are predominantly feral, due to isolation and the time it takes to acquire that much radiation. Although uncommonly they may transition into this state before losing their faculties. See this section for more details.

From Fallout 3 onwards, Glowing Ones are particularly difficult in combat due to their resilience and the ability to suddenly discharge radiation from their body in a room sized "blast" that harms non-ghoul targets and heals ghouls.

People have seen on more than one occasion a feral glowing one fighting or being chased by "normal" feral ghouls. Although very rare, it is possible for a glowing one to retain their intelligence and cognitive functions, such as Jason Bright, Oswald the Outrageous, and several unnamed ghouls in Necropolis and most of the technicians at the Gecko power plant.

Ferocious necrotic post-human (feral ghoul)

A feral ghoul

Main article: Feral ghoul

These are ghouls who have irreversibly transitioned to a feral state, sustained only by radiation they absorb. Ferals are invariably hostile to living creatures (with the exception of other ghouls) and tend to cluster together in packs. Feral ghouls are among the more unfortunate mutants whose minds have deteriorated from prolonged radiation poisoning, becoming instinct-driven savages, attacking anyone and anything relentlessly, save for other ghouls. They are roughly divided into groups according to the danger they pose:

  • Regular feral ghouls wear torn, shredded civilian clothes and are very easy to dispatch.
  • Feral ghoul roamers and stalkers are often wearing rags or no clothes at all. They are considerably tougher than a normal feral ghoul and considerably more dangerous with their attacks.
  • Feral ghoul reavers are the most deteriorated form of a feral ghoul, wearing bits of metal armor and metal flight suits. Radiation has melted and fused entire segments of their body, making them incredibly tough to dispatch. In Fallout 3, even worse is the fact that reavers have no self-preservation instinct and will readily rip out its radioactive guts and throw them at their targets.
  • Withered, gangrenous, rotting, and charred feral ghouls are the rarest of feral ghoul subtypes and the most dangerous given their resilience to being dispatched and considerably deadly attacks.

Marked men

A marked man wearing marked trooper armor, and carrying a light machine gun.
Main article: Marked men

A unique subtype of the ferocious necrotic post-human, marked men are indigenous to The Divide area. Wounded by the subterranean nuclear detonations of 2277 and flayed alive by the resulting storms of the Divide, marked men are sustained only by the high background radiation that permeates the area, which keeps the regeneration going despite otherwise fatal damage to their bodies. As a result, the marked men cannot leave the Divide, and have developed a unique culture due to retaining a semblance of cognition. Despite still being cognitive enough to carry weapons and utilize advanced tactics such as constructing outposts and utilizing guard towers, they are still immediately hostile to any and all outsiders that venture near.[42]

Named ghouls

Garret Set
Fallout 2
Brian Coffin Willie Eric
Festus Gordon Hank
Jeremy Lenny Lumpy
Percival Crump Phil Set
Skeeter Typhon Woody
Wooz Zomak
Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel
Blake Cain Giese
Hieronymous Salieri
Fallout 3
Ahzrukhal Argyle Dead Barrett
Doctor Barrows Bessie Lynn Carol
Charon Mister Crowley Ethyl (feral)
Gallo Gob Nurse Graves
Greta Jaime Palabras Miss Jeanette
Mr. Keller (feral) Meat (feral) Michael Masters
Moira Brown (optional) Murphy Patchwork
Quinn Roy Phillips Samuel (feral)
Snowflake Stefan (feral) Tulip
Wastelander Willow Winthrop
Desmond Lockheart Point Lookout (add-on) Plik Point Lookout (add-on) Atom's Champion Broken Steel (feral)
Badger Broken Steel Dead Carl Broken Steel Dead Connelly Broken Steel Dead
Mother Curie III Broken Steel (optional) Dunbar Broken Steel Dead Brother Gerard Broken Steel (optional)
Griffon Broken Steel Kidd Broken Steel Novice Broken Steel
Sanders Broken Steel Dead Sun of Atom Broken Steel (feral) Wint Broken Steel
Fallout: New Vegas
Andy Scabb Beatrix Russell Bert Gunnarsson
Calamity Dennis Ghoul prisoner Dead
Grecks Hadrian Harland
Jason Bright Keely Private Kyle Edwards
Raul Tejada Rotface Doctor Rotson Dead
Dean Domino Dead Money Number 27 Old World Blues (add-on) Number 34 Old World Blues (add-on)
Beast Lonesome Road (add-on) (Marked man) Blade Lonesome Road (add-on) (Marked man) Blister Lonesome Road (add-on) (Marked man)
Bonesaw Lonesome Road (add-on) (Marked man) Gaius Magnus Lonesome Road (add-on) (Marked man) General Martin Retslaf Lonesome Road (add-on) Dead
Colonel Royez Lonesome Road (add-on) (Marked man)
Fallout 4
Arlen Glass Bethany Billy Peabody
Bob Stanson (feral) Bobbi No-Nose Bradley Ramone (feral)
Carol Peabody Daisy Deirdre
Edward Deegan Edward "Eddie" Winter Yangtze First Mate (feral)
Father Gabe Ham Holly
John "Hancock" McDonough John Hatfield (feral) Jon Elwood (feral)
Jones Kent Connolly Matt Peabody
Pre-War Sanctuary residents (ferals) Rags Sinjin
Slim Slough Theodore Croup Dead
Tim Shoots (feral) Tommy Lonegan Trish
Vault-Tec rep Wayne Gorski (feral) Wiseman
Captain Zao Frederick Gibbons Far Harbor (add-on) (feral) Patrick Gibbons Far Harbor (add-on) (feral)
Steven Gibbons Far Harbor (add-on) (feral) Victoria Gibbons Far Harbor (add-on) (feral) Oswald "The Outrageous" Oppenheimer Nuka-World (add-on)
Rachel Watkins Nuka-World (add-on) Dead Security Chief Andersen Vault-Tec Workshop (feral) Julian Vault-Tec Workshop (feral)
Overseer Valery Barstow Vault-Tec Workshop Candace "Candy" Isola Creation Club Johnny Morton Creation Club (feral)
Mercy Creation Club Murderer Creation Club Phil Goodman Creation Club Dead
Raymond Creation Club Rod Stoddard Creation Club (feral) Roy Baker Creation Club (feral)
Wally Mack Creation Club (feral)
Fallout 76
Agent Mochou Bethy Mangano Billy (feral)
Chase Terrier Cole (feral) Eugenie
Freddie Lang (feral) Frida Madani Harvey Tinley (feral)
J47 (feral) Agent Kensington (feral) Lucky Lou
Lucas (feral) Lucy Harwick Dead Mordecai "Mort" McCoy
Penelope Hornwright Red (feral) Sara Samir Dead
Tommy Ten-Toes Xerxo

Notable quotes

  • "The future. Survival anywhere. We surpass the norms." – Set talks about ghouls
  • "There ain't any ghouls but old ghouls. We're all sterile, see, but we're incredibly long-lived. We're the first and last generation of ghouls." - Typhon
  • "Without medical technology, all of us ghouls are going to die off in the next 20 years, anyway." - Gordon
  • "With silver-bells and cockleshells and… Boy, you are dumb, aren’t you? Severe radiation. That’s how. How do you think? You know, many bombs go boom, flash of light and heat, flesh burns off, but you don’t-quite-die-type severe radiation?" - Wooz
  • "Not bad, still in one piece... well except for that one that got away, but I'll find it, no worries." - Patchwork


Ghouls appear in every Fallout game to date.

Behind the scenes

Ghouls are a type of mutant.

Harold is a ghoul. He's also a little special.

Super Mutants are humans with no or minimal radiation damage who have been exposed to FEV.

Ghouls are humans with significant radiation damage exposed to FEV.

Harold is, well, Harold.
Chris Taylor, Fallout Bible 5
I know we treated him as a ghoul, but not a Necropolis one. He may have been irradiated before or after. All I remember was that he went in there with the guy whose name I forget (the one who fell into the vat and became the Master), and only Harold came out. Harold's memory is totally whacked, btw. ...most people don't know when they get irradiated, so he [Harold] just may not know what happened to him. I do know that radiation and FEV do not mix. Mutants are immune to radiation effects, but an irradiate human is killed by exposure to FEV. So one thing is sure: Harold is not a mix of radiation and FEV. He's got to be one or the other, and I think he's a ghoul.Tim Cain, Fallout Bible 5
  • A ghoul is described as "Bloodman" in an old Fallout concept art piece.
  • Virtually every Fallout game includes ghouls in some capacity: Fallout Tactics had ghouls in the The Belt, including a nuclear weapon-worshiping cult in Kansas City. Both Quincy and Springfield also have some ghoul occupants, while Fallout: Brotherhood of Seel included ghouls in Los who turned after being locked outside the Secret Vault. Later, in the same city, the Church of the Lost was created by former vault dwellers that had become ghouls.
  • Van Buren would have included two more ghoul types:
    • Endless walkers: Ghouls exposed to the harsh conditions of the American Southwest for too long will become what is known as an endless walker. Years of the desert sun has cooked their brain, destroying the cerebrum and turning any normal ghouls that undergo the process feral. They are cursed to endlessly walk, forever searching for something to quiet their insatiable appetite. Their skin has hardened into a natural leather, making them more resilient.
    • Born ghouls: Through cruel experimentation on humans by Dr. Sebastian at the Reservation, born ghouls were created. They are ghouls who have not mutated from humans, but who were actually born into ghoul-dom. There would be only three known born ghouls.
  • Among Fallout developers, Tim Cain stated that ghouls are only a result of radiation, consistent with an understanding of the science of radiation as it stood during the 1950s, Chris Taylor said that a mix of both radiation and FEV was involved. While Chris Avellone initially supported the latter view in his Fallout Bible,[Non-canon 15] he was later convinced to support the radiation-only version.[Non-canon 16][Non-canon 17]
  • According to Kal-El Bogdanove, ghouls who have recently ghoulified have less raspy voices.

[Non-canon 18]

  • In folklore, a ghoul is a monster or spirit that is associated with graveyards and consuming human flesh.



  1. Underworld terminal entries; Research terminal (Barrows)
  2. Randall Clark's journal
  3. Patchwork.txt
  4. Fallout 2 Official Strategies & Secrets: "Ghouls were once humans, but they were caught outside of a protective Vault when the bombs dropped. The same radiation that turned their flesh into parched leather has given them an incredibly long life-span. Those closest to the blast zones are still so radioactive that they continue to glow. These Glowing Ones, as they're called, have had some of their intellect burned away as well. Shunned by the people of the Wastes, most Ghouls have little to live for."
  5. Cold Case
  6. The Sole Survivor: "What's your story, Hancock?"
    Hancock: "My favorite subject. I came into this town about... a decade ago? Had a smooth set of skin back then. While I was busy making myself a pillar of this community, I would go on these... like ... wild tears... I was young... Any chems I could find, the more exotic, the better. Finally found this experimental radiation drug. Only one of its kind left, and only one hit. Oh man, the high was so worth it. Yeah, I'm living with the side effects, but hey, what's not to love about immortality?"
    The Sole Survivor: "You're immortal?"
    Hancock: "Well... not exactly. Ghouls just age really, really slow. Something about the rads, maybe? Who knows..."
    (Hancock's dialogue)
  7. The Sole Survivor: "Running from yourself? What do you mean?"
    Hancock: "Well, I mean, I didn't always look this good. The drug that did this to me, that made me a Ghoul, I knew what it was going to do. I just couldn't stand looking at the bastard I saw in the mirror anymore. The coward who'd let all those Ghouls from Diamond City die. Who was too scared to protect his fellow drifters from Vic and his boys. If I took it, I'd never have to look at him again. I could put that all behind me. I'd be free. Didn't seem like a choice at all. Turns out it was just me running from somethin' else in my life."
    (Hancock's dialogue)
  8. Refinery supervisor: "{102}{}{You see a ghoul. Its skin looks like it’s ready to slough off the creature. It also looks like it’s readily accepted by the other townsfolk.}"
  9. The Courier: "I've never seen corpses mutilated like that."
    Ulysses: "Even as the fires here burned them from within... the winds of the Divide tore their skin, exposed them... screaming... to the sky. And just as the Divide tears at them, so they tear at each other, for sport - like some tribal scarification. Falling back to their history, maybe. No matter what they suffer... the radiation, fire of the Divide, sustains them. Makes them stronger."
    (Ulysses' dialogue)
  10. Dead Money loading screens: "The Sierra Madre is a legend, like the Big Empty, the Burned Man, and the rumors of survivors from the Divide."
  11. 11.0 11.1 The Lone Wanderer: "So, how did you end up as a Ghoul?"
    Carol: "I don't know how it happens. Doctor Barrows says it was radiation. All I know is that people kept showing up here in the museum. After things calmed down above ground, we tried to live down here as best we could. After a while, things got strange. My skin started to get dry and flake off. Everyone's did. It took a while, months, maybe a year. But sooner or later, everyone ended up like this. Some of them went crazy. Some of us just accepted it. After a while, other Ghouls would find their way in here and Underworld just sort of grew. No one bothered us down here, and we were happy enough to leave them alone. And once my Greta showed up, it was a good enough life for me."
    (Carol's dialogue)
  12. 12.0 12.1 Lucy's holotape
  13. The Sole Survivor: "Thanks. You're not so bad yourself."
    Hancock: "I never get many complaints. It's just real rare these days, find someone who's not just willing to take things the way they're handed to them. Too many good folks not willing to get their hands dirty and too many assholes taking advantage of it. Look at what happened to Diamond City. Before McDonough took over, it was a half-decent place to live. A little stricter than I usually go for, but not terrible. I thought he and I had a pretty happy childhood. But then he decides he's gonna try and get elected with his anti-Ghoul crusade - "Mankind for McDonough." Before ya know it, you got families with kids lining up to drag folks they called "neighbor" out of their homes and throw 'em to the ruins."
    The Sole Survivor: "How could they do something like that?"
    Hancock: "There'd always been a pretty big gulf between the folks living in the stands and folks down on the field. McDonough ran on it because he thought enough of those Upper Stands assholes would vote for him. Guess he was right."
    The Sole Survivor: "It could have gone worse. At least they left with their lives."
    Hancock: "And how long do you think those folks lasted in the ruins? The city condemned those Ghouls to die. Cowards just got someone else to pull the trigger. I remember storming into his office above the stands after the inauguration speech. He was just standing there, staring out the window, watching as the city turned on the Ghouls. He didn't even look at me, just said: "I did it, John. It's finally mine." Should have killed him right there, but I don't think it would have changed anything. Instead I pleaded with him, begged him to call it off. He said he couldn't. He had nothing against the Ghouls. He was just carrying out the will of the people. And he couldn't betray the voters. And then he smiled. That hideous, fucking mile-long smile. He never smiled like that when we were kids. I didn't even recognize him."
    (Hancock's dialogue)
  14. Wiseman: "Welcome to the Slog! We're the only Tarberry bog in the Commonwealth. So what do you think of the place?"
    The Sole Survivor: "The Slog? How'd you come up with that name?"
    Wiseman: "We didn't. It was the caravan traders who started that. I started this place a few years back but couldn't think of a name for it. Then, one day, one of the traders pulls up after it's been raining for hours, and says he's never had to slog through so much mud in his life. I asked him if it was worth it, and he said for the best tarberries in the Commonwealth, it was definitely worth it. Working' here's like a slog through the mud. It's tough going and you'll get dirty doing it, but at the end of the day, it's worth it. You've probably noticed it's only ghouls around here. I used to live in Diamond City, until that rat bastard mayor threw me and all the other ghouls out. I decided that we ghouls should have a place where we could feel welcome, and that's mainly why I started up this farm."
    Wiseman's dialogue)
  15. Lucy Harwick's note
  16. Lucy's journal
  17. Lou's log: Engine room
  18. Vault Dweller: "It's bad enough he wants to die without you trying to kill him."
    Lev: "Who do you think put idea of going feral into Lou's head? Much easier to get away with it if he kills himself."
    (Lev's dialogue)
  19. Clifford: "She was born in Great Lanta on the shores of the ocean. Her parents were both ghouls. That's right; I said ghouls. That she was conceived at all was a miracle. That she was born unafflicted was an even greater miracle."
    (Clifford's dialogue)
  20. 20.0 20.1 The Chosen One: "{115}{}{Tell me about this place.}"
    Wooz: "{160}{}{Not much to tell, really. Just a bunch of ghouls clinging tenaciously to the ass-end of life.}"
    The Chosen One: "{161}{}{No, I meant tell me about this bar.}"
    Wooz: "{440}{}{Well, the Harp’s named after a favorite hangout that I used to have before the war. I guess it’s just a reminder of times past. Sort of a joke on the only way we’re going to get a better deal, too.}"
    The Chosen One: "{441}{}{Before the war? But that was a long time ago.}"
    Wooz: "{460}{}{It sure was a long time ago. How do you think ghouls are made? You think some of us just got up one fine day and said to ourselves: "Gee, I wonder what it’d be like to have my flesh rotting off my fucking body?"}"
    The Chosen One: "{461}{}{Well, no, I didn’t. Say, how do you make a ghoul?}"
    Wooz: "490}{}{With silver-bells and cockleshells and… Boy, you are dumb, aren’t you? Severe radiation. That’s how. How do you think? You know, many bombs go boom, flash of light and heat, flesh burns off, but you don’t-quite-die-type severe radiation?}"
    The Chosen One: "{491}{}{Uh well, I mean…}"
    Wooz: "{500}{}{Well, I didn’t think so. Fuck you very much for bringing back all those intensely painful memories. Asshole. We’re a town of fucking leftovers -— slightly overcooked leftovers.}"
    (Wooz's dialogue)
  21. 21.0 21.1 Underworld terminal entries; Research terminal, Study Of Ferocious Post-Necrotic Dystrophy
  22. Moira Brown if the atomic bomb is detonated, concluding The Power of the Atom.
  23. Private Kyle Edwards and the rest of the NCR garrison at Camp Searchlight.
  24. Raul Tejada: "After the fire, I knew my sister and I couldn't stay at Hidalgo Ranch anymore. The refugees still wanted me dead - they even put a bounty on me. I remember how scared Rafaela was. I told her if she came with me, we'd see the vaqueros - she used to love the rodeo, especially the trick riders. We figured maybe we could find help in Mexico City - we were young, we didn't know what had happened, really. We didn't understand about the bombs."
    The Courier: "Wasn't Mexico City basically annihilated in the Great War?"
    Raul Tejada: "I don't think it was as hard hit as DC or Bakersfield, but it was bad enough. By the time we got there, the city was a radioactive ruin. Still, the city was full of looters, already forming into the beginnings of raider tribes. Crime was bad before the War, but now it was a nightmare. We were living like scavengers, scraping by on what little food we could find, always looking for medicine for my burns. And then, of course, the radiation started to kick in, turning me into this handsome devil you see before you."
    (Raul Tejada's dialogue)
  25. Ghoul appearance in Fallout and Fallout 2, especially Set.
  26. Snowflake, Desmond Lockheart, as well as several ghouls in Fallout 4 and Fallout 76 have full heads of hair, and Raul Tejada and Desmond Lockheart again have facial hair.
  27. Gordon: "{100}{}{You see another ghoul. He appears to be preoccupied.}"
    "{101}{}{You see Gordon of Gecko.}"
    "{102}{}{You see a very nicely dressed ghoul with his hair slicked back.}"
    (Gordon's dialogue)
  28. Wooz: "{100}{}{You see a tall ghoul with long hair.}"
    "{101}{}{You see Wooz.}"
    "{102}{}{You see an extremely tall and lanky ghoul with long hair.}"
  29. Plik, Raul Tejada, and Jason Bright still have clear voices.
  30. 30.0 30.1 The Courier: "Turns out there are customers looking for someone just like you."
    Beatrix Russell: "Weirdos into bullwhips and necrosis, eh? Doesn't sound half-bad... What am I thinking? I'm no whore, and I ain't about to hand my ass over to some penny-ante hustler like he owns me."
    (Beatrix Russell's dialogue)
  31. Raul Tejada: "Sure, boss. You lead the charge, I'll follow as fast as my arthritic, rotting knees can carry me."
    (Raul Tejada's dialogue)
  32. Raul Tejada: "Sorry, boss. Must be my glaucomas acting up again."
    "Don't worry, boss, with my cataracts you only sort of look like the bad guys."
    (Raul Tejada's dialogue)
  33. The Courier: "I think it's good that he's retired. Out of sight, out of mind."
    Raul Tejada: "Yeah, I suppose you're right. Guys like us can't compete any more."
    The Courier: "Guys like us?"
    Raul Tejada: "Did I say us? I meant "him." Guess my eyesight isn't the only thing that's going."
    (Raul Tejada's dialogue)
  34. Ghoulified NCR troopers from We Will All Go Together
  35. Year: 2108 - August 22nd
    10 sets of tracks 1/2 mile NE of canyon entrance. Barefoot???
    August 23rd
    Saw them through scope. Corpses walking around. Finally gone crazy. Dementia maybe.
    August 24th
    I'm not crazy, they're real. Goddammit they are real.
    Rushed me the moment they saw me, snarling like animals. They look like corpses but don't smell rotted.
    I'll be putting them out of their misery. Doing for them what I never could for myself.
    September 3rd
    The last of them. All gone.
  36. Eric: "{100}{}{You see a greasy, sweating man.}"
    "{101}{}{You see Eric.}"
    "{102}{}{You see a greasy, sweating man. He looks quite miserable.}"
    The Chosen One: "{115}{}{Why are the flies coming here?}"
    Eric: "{124}{}{They come here because for some odd reason I exude fly nutrients. My body is rich with food for them, and this sweating just makes it worse.}"
    The Chosen One: "{125}{}{That's just plain nasty. Why not take a bath or something?}"
    Eric: "{128}{}{I've tried that. I've tried everything. The only thing that keeps the flies off me is not to sweat... and when I don't have enough power to keep cool, I can't.}"
  37. The Lone Wanderer: "So, you're the town drunk, huh?"
    Patchwork: "Why yes! Yes I am! And... PROUD! Proud of it! I mean, if I weren't, I'd probably just spend a lot more time cry... crying... you know? Here I am... drunk... falling apart -- liter- literally! I lost my damn finger last week! Doc put it back on though... bless him..."
    The Lone Wanderer: "You're losing parts? Like... body parts?"
    Patchwork: "Yeah... it happens... a lot, actuall.. actually. All the time. But I'm getting' better... I think... Just keep an... eye out for 'em... but not my eye, those ain't never fallen out yet..."
    (Patchwork's dialogue)
  38. Underworld terminal entries; Research terminal, Examination of the Post-Necrotic Human
  39. The Lone Wanderer: "Gah! Fuck! What are you?"
    Gob: "I guess they don't have a lot of Ghouls in the Vault. Haven't you ever seen a Ghoul before?"
    The Lone Wanderer: "No. What's a ghoul?"
    Gob: "Well, not all of us got the chance to hole up in a nice cushy Vault when the bombs fell. A bunch of us got stuck out here in the world, and got a full on blast of heat and radiation -- turned us into a pack of walking corpses. Near as I can tell, we age slower than you. A lot slower. There are even a few Ghouls that were alive during the war. Of course, with a face like ground Brahmin meat, you can imagine that folks don't take too kindly to us."
    (Gob's dialogue)
  40. Fallout 3 loading screens: "Ghouls, both "normal" and Feral, are not only immune to radiation... they're healed by it."
  41. The Lone Wanderer: "What sort of payment are we talking about?"
    Winthrop: "Well, we got Stimpaks, but the Doc keeps us healed up, so we don't really need 'em. So I could trade one of those for five bits of Scrap Metal. We also got us a TON of RadAway and Rad-X. I mean, what good is it to us? But I'll trade you either one for five bits of scrap. Your choice."
    (Winthrop's dialogue)
  42. 42.0 42.1 The Courier: "Radiation may keep them alive in areas so physically punishing, it would kill others - even ghouls."
    Ulysses: "[SUCCEEDED] There's truth in your words, in what I've seen of their tactics, movements - recovery. Those wounds - they couldn't live otherwise. The Divide winds have torn the skin from many of them - may be the radiation is the only thing keeping them walking. Make camp near silos... warheads. No way to cleanse the radiation - makes them hard to kill there, have to draw them out."
    (Ulysses' dialogue)
  43. The Courier: "If they've become ghouls, the radiation would strengthen them. Heal their wounds - not the scars."
    Ulysses: "[SUCCEEDED] There's truth in your words, in what I've seen of their tactics, movements - recovery. Those wounds - they couldn't live otherwise. The Divide winds have torn the skin from many of them - may be the radiation is the only thing keeping them walking. Make camp near silos... warheads. No way to cleanse the radiation - makes them hard to kill there, have to draw them out."
    (Ulysses' dialogue)
  44. Ghoul leader: "{132}{}{You aren't thinking of taking the Water Chip from us are you?}"
    The Vault Dweller: "{135}{}{Why?}"
    Ghoul leader: "{136}{}{If you take the Water Chip from us, then we will all die. With our water pump broken we need it to survive.}"
  45. The Lone Wanderer: "What happened to the other Tenpenny Tower residents?"
    Michael Masters: "Heh. Roy decided to take out the trash. I'm glad I lost my sense of smell. You'll want to stay clear of the basement storage room."
    (Michael Masters' dialogue)
  46. Courier: "How have you survived?"
    Harland: "I'm not delicate. Radroach meat for protein, condensation off the pipes for water, and I do my business over in the far corner. I wouldn't say it's been comfy."
    (Harland's dialogue)
  47. The Lone Wanderer: "Doc, it's crowded in your clinic. Something going around I should worry about?"
    Doctor Barrows "I don't know yet. Some kind of virus that attacks the body on a cellular level. I've never seen anything like it. It's strange because ghouls are immune to almost any known disease."
    (Barrows' dialogue in Broken Steel)
  48. The Lone Wanderer: "Ultrajet? That some sort of super chem?"
    Murphy: "I suppose you could say that. Ultrajet is almost double the potency of Jet... perfect for Ghouls. Jet barely affects us you see. Only trouble is it's almost impossible to gather the ingredients together. Say, you might be able to help me with that!"
    (Murphy's dialogue (Fallout 3))
  49. Coffin Willie: "{304}{}{Nothing more boring than bein' in a coffin for months.}"
    (Coffin Willie's dialogue)
  50. Find Woody the ghoul for Percy. Try the Den
  51. Kid in a Fridge
  52. The Courier: "Exactly how old is Keely?"
    Angela Williams: "I couldn't get her to say. But she talked about the war - the great war, when the bombs fell - like she'd been there. So I'm guessing... pretty old. Two hundred years? Maybe more."
  53. The Courier: "The scientists here must have made some useful discoveries."
    Keely: "Oh, they did. I've taken extensive notes of all their successful experiments. Their research won't go to waste. As for the file erasure..."
    (Keely's dialogue)
  54. The Courier: "You don't look like the other ghouls from Bright's group."
    Harland: "Guess the outfit gives that away, huh? I never did buy into that religious mumbo-jumbo with the robes and all that shit. It gets lonely out in the wastes, okay? And I don't have to tell you that Bright's group has got some fine-looking ghoulettes in it! Eh... or maybe I would have to tell you... Anyway, I helped them out, and they kept me supplied with ammo and pleasant company."
    (Harland's dialogue)
  55. The Lone Wanderer: "Have you ever heard of a guy named Gob?"
    Carol: "Gob? Yes, of course! He's my son... well, not really, not like you would think of a son. We Ghouls don't really work like that, but I love him like he's my own! Do you know him? Have you seen him? Is he alright?"
    (Carol's dialogue)
  56. Typhon: "{101}{}{You see Typhon, son of Set.}"
    The Chosen One: "{150}{}{Who are you?}"
    Typhon: "{155}{}{I'm Typhon. Y'ever hear of Set? He used to run the old-time town of Necropolis. I'm his son. Got born before the radiation hit us, so I grew up mutated. Ain't never been any other way for me.}"
    (Typhon's dialogue)
  57. The Sole Survivor: "What if she never returns? How long are you going to wait?"
    Oswald the Outrageous: "I will stay here for as long as it takes. I've already watched 200 years pass, what makes you think I can't wait 200 more?"
    (Oswald the Outrageous's dialogue)
  58. Zao: "But now I must... warn you. There is danger. Wei xian! Old crew... still down there. Not okay like their captain. Worse. They do not harm me. But they will kill you! I... I cannot kill them. Still, they are my crew. My family. Jia ren, all of us. But you must do what you must do."
    (Zao's dialogue)
  59. The Lone Wanderer: "I need more details... What's the breach all about?"
    M.A.R.Go.T.: "Internal visual sensing equipment is detecting numerous unidentified persons in the southeast tunnels area. The individuals have damaged metro equipment and refused dialogue with our security units. In accordance with U.S. Security Statute A567/B, the use of deadly force has been authorized."
    The Lone Wanderer: "Can you tell me more about these unidentified persons?"
    M.A.R.Go.T.: "My apologies. My sensing equipment in that area must be damaged. My equipment indicates the persons possess no internal body heat and are emitting lethal levels of radiation."
    (M.A.R.Go.T.'s dialogue)
  60. Little Yangtze terminals; Little Yangtze Log terminal, Elijah's Journal - Day 2
  61. 61.0 61.1 Underworld terminal entries; Research terminal, Neurology of Luminous Necrotic Post-Humans
  62. 62.0 62.1 Caravan guard: "The ghoul whale is real. Ol' Peg. Right outside the harbor. Dark and ominous things swim the deep."
    (Bunker Hill caravan guard's dialogue)
  63. The Vault Dweller: "{1012}{}{Necropolis}"
    Tycho: "{1112}{}{The City of Death is well named. It lies in what used to be the little town of Bakersfield. Now, though, it's home to ghouls and worse.}"
    (Tycho's dialogue)
  64. The Vault Dweller: "{1016}{}{Necropolis}"
    Killian Darkwater: "{1116}{Kill80}{That city's death. I sent two patrols down there and neither one of them returned.}"
  65. The Vault Dweller: "{165}{}{Necropolis}"
    Keri Lee: "{179}{}{Watch your ass, Necropolis isn't a very friendly place.}"
    "{180}{}{Set's the leader of the town. At least he was the last time I was there.}"
    "{181}{}{That town's full of skags! Well, I better get you going.}"
    (Keri Lee's dialogue)
  66. The Chosen One: "{114}{}{Hello, Harold. What do you do here?}"
    Harold: "{121}{hld3}{Wha-whatever it takes to keep this place together. Better job on it than me.}"
    The Chosen One: "{122}{}{This place is coming apart?}"
    Harold: "{127}{hld4a}{Well, sorta. Our atomic reactor’s a mite...sensitive. The people I got running it mean well, but... well, they are not the sharpest tools in the shed. If you know what I mean.}"
    (Harold's dialogue)
  67. The Chosen One: "{186}{}{"Trying times?" What do you mean?}"
    McClure: "{220}{}{Things have been tough these last two years. The NCR has been getting more aggressive in their attempts to get Vault City to join the Republic.}"
    "{221}{}{They tell us that if we were to join, they would be able to defend us from the raider attacks on our city. As of late, these raider attacks have become more brutal.}"
    "{222}{}{On top of all of this, we have ghouls in Gecko contaminating our groundwater.}"
  68. 68.0 68.1 The Chosen One: "{208}{}{What can you tell me about Gecko?}"
    Gregory: "{219}{}{Gecko? It's a filthy shantytown to the north, inhabited by those creatures, those... "ghouls." They're responsible for poisoning our groundwater, you know! It's an obvious act of terrorism against Vault City!}"
    The Chosen One: "{220}{}{How are they poisoning the water?}"
    Gregory: "{223}{}{Their shantytown is built around the remains of an old atomic power plant... a plant they SOMEHOW started up again and that is now leaking radiation! Those creatures need to be driven out and that plant shut down!}"
    (Gregory's dialogue)
  69. The Chosen One: "{262}{}{Vault City wouldn’t give you the part? Even if it means that the groundwater won’t be polluted anymore?}"
    Harold: "{274}{hld53}{Well, they’d only help us if they thought it was in their own best interest to do so. Huh. Not much chance of that happening.}"
    The Chosen One: "{275}{}{Hmm, you may be right. Still if someone could convince them that they should help you….}"
    Harold: "{276}{hld54}{They shoot ghouls on sight. Makes conversation a bit tricky.}"
    (Harold's dialogue)
  70. The Chosen One: "{337}{}{Is there some way I could become a Citizen?}"
    Joanne Lynette: "{287}{lyn034a}{You may speak with Proconsul Gregory. He has authority to administer the Citizenship test. He can be found in the meeting room down the corridor.}"
    The Chosen One: "{291}{}{I'll go talk to the Proconsul, then.}"
    Joanne Lynette: "{288}{lyn034b}{Or... there IS another way to become a Citizen...}"
    The Chosen One: "{289}{}{Another way? What is it?}"
    Joanne Lynette: "{339}{lyn044}{Rather than taking the test, you could prove your commitment to the Vaults in a more... substantial way. As an Outsider, you are in a unique position to resolve a difficult...situation for us.}"
    The Chosen One: "{340}{}{What kind of situation?}"
    Joanne Lynette: "{354}{lyn047}{There's a town... if you could call it that... to the northeast of our city. It is filled with... creatures that are polluting the groundwater with dangerous radiation.}"
    The Chosen One: "{355}{}{How are they poisoning the groundwater?}"
    Joanne Lynette: "{362}{lyn049}{Those... things... are operating a damaged atomic power plant. You see, THEY are immune to radiation...they don't care that they are slowly killing us with their poisons.}"
    The Chosen One: "{356}{}{What do you want me to do about it?}"
    Joanne Lynette: "{358}{lyn048}{Disable their plant, permanently, so that they cannot cause any more damage.}"
    The Chosen One: "{359}{}{Sounds easy enough. I'll be back when the situation's... "resolved."}"
    (Joanne Lynette's dialogue)
  71. Grecks and Rotface of Freeside in Fallout: New Vegas
  72. Hadrian in Freeside in Fallout: New Vegas
  73. Securitron: "Be advised, visitors will be held responsible for the behavior of any non-human sapients accompanying them."
    (Securitron's dialogue)}}
  74. Hadrian recruited for Talent Pool
  75. The Courier: "What's the "Great Journey"?"
    Jason Bright: "We wish to escape the barbarity of the wasteland, especially the violence and bigotry of its human inhabitants. The creator has promised to my flock a new land: a place of safety and healing... a paradise in the Far Beyond. Preparations for the Great Journey were nearly complete when the demons appeared."
    (Jason Bright's dialogue)
  76. Raul Tejada: "Cheer up, kid. It's not that bad. Sure, your skin rots off and you start to stink like a public toilet after Cinco de Mayo, but... umm...."
    Kyle Edwards: "What? How is that not bad? In fact, how could it get worse?"
    Raul Tejada: "Well, assuming you survive the radiation sickness, the lynch mobs, and the possibility of going feral, one day you'll get old and decrepit, like me."
    Kyle Edwards: "Oh god!"
    Raul Tejada: "What? Was it something I said?"
    (Raul Tejada's and Kyle Edwards' dialogue)
  77. The Lone Wanderer: "Isn't it dangerous being this deep into the city?"
    Tulip: "Not really. The Super Mutants leave us alone. I guess whatever they do that turns people like them doesn't work on us. The Brotherhood of Steel will fire on us if we're out in the open, but they don't bother us down here. We've had some Raiders and Slavers poke their heads in, but we've got Charon and Cerberus and everyone else to take care of them. I guess when it comes down to it, being this far out of everyone's way is a good deal for us."
    (Tulip's dialogue)
  78. The Lone Wanderer: "How would you feel about having a few Ghoul neighbors?"
    Julius Banfield: "I'm not sure. My first responsibility is the health and welfare of the residents of Tenpenny Tower. Ghouls often carry diseases due to radiation damaging their immune systems."
    The Lone Wanderer: "Sure they look a little weird, but they're not diseased vermin."
    Julius Banfield: "Well, umm. I guess I must confess... I've never examined a Ghoul up close... you're right. I shouldn't make assumptions."
    The Lone Wanderer: "I don't suppose you've consulted any Ghouls on your little theory?"
    Julius Banfield: "Well... not exactly. But my colleagues have published papers... I suppose I someone ought to verify their findings... Perhaps I'll do that. Who knows? I might even finally get published!"
    (Julius Banfield's dialogue)
  79. The Lone Wanderer: "What the hell's a Ghoul anyway? Some kind of diseased human?"
    Gustavo: "You serious? You don't know what a Ghoul is? A goddamn disaster waiting to happen that's what they are. Sure, maybe you can get over the fact they look like someone took a cheese grater to their face. But it's what you don't see that's the problem. The radiation slowly eats away their brain, then they go zombie on you. It's better for everyone to kill them before all that, if you ask me."
    (Gustavo's dialogue)
  80. The Lone Wanderer: "How's that Ghoul situation coming along?"
    Gustavo: "That damn Roy Phillips won't take no for an answer. Keeps showing up, looking for a handout. He and his kind aren't wanted. End of story. If I were a betting man, I'd place a stack of caps on him trying something violent soon. And that would make Tenpenny nervous. I don't like it when Tenpenny gets nervous. But I can't spare the manpower to go hunt down Roy Phillips and his band of misfits, or I'd gladly end this thing once and for all."
    (Gustavo's dialogue)
  81. The Lone Wanderer: "You're all bigots."
    Gustavo: "Your bleeding heart is liable to get you in a lot of trouble one day. Look kid, eventually all Ghouls go zombie on your ass. It's only a matter of time. Kill them when you find them. It's a win-win. You put them out of their misery, and save someone else from getting torn apart. "
    (Gustavo's dialogue)
  82. The Lone Wanderer: "Hmph. I thought Ghouls hated humans."
    Graves: "Humans have too many misconceptions. Some of us don't get along with humans, but the majority of us are learning to live with our differences. I only wish that the humans in the Capital Wasteland felt the same way. It would make life so much easier... Anyway, I am taking too much time speaking with you when I should be working. If you need anything, let me know."
    (Graves' dialogue)
  83. The Lone Wanderer: "Why not?"
    Graves: "Well, some of the Ghouls in Underworld object to what the Doctor is doing. They think Ghouls are Ghouls and humans are humans. Like we were meant to be this way. Some have even threatened the doctor. I'm afraid one day something might happen to him."
    (Graves' dialogue)
  84. The Chosen One: "{115}{}{What do you do here?}"
    Lenny: "{160}{}{W’well, I h’help H’harold mostly. Wh’when people get hurt, I h’help them out.}"
    The Chosen One: "{341}{}{What else did you say you did here?}"
    Lenny: "{340}{}{I h’help H’harold administer the town. Th’there’s always more p’paperwork to do.}"
    The Chosen One: "{163}{}{You can heal people?}"
    Lenny: "{200}{}{Well, b’before the W’war I w’was a doctor.}"
    The Chosen One: "{201}{}{Before the war? But that must have been almost 160 years ago.}"
    Lenny: "{210}{}{That's t’true. B’but the radiation seems to have g’given us g’ghouls a longer life-span. ‘Course, it took almost eveything else away.}"
    The Chosen One: "{211}{}{Took things away?}"
    Lenny: "{220}{}{W’well, y’yes. We look l’like f’friggin’ f’freaks. We d’don’t have any skin, for Chrisakes.}"
    The Chosen One: "{221}{}{Well, I guess you have seen better days.}"
    Lenny: "{230}{}{Y’you c’could say that. I’d trade in all those years to b’be a n’normal person again.}"
    The Chosen One: "{231}{}{Well, not much hope of that, I suppose.}"
    Lenny: "{240}{}{If those f’fools in Vault City w’would share their medical technology, I’m sure we could c’cleanse the excess r’radiation and heal ourselves.}"
    The Chosen One: "{241}{}{They won’t help you?}"
    Lenny: "{250}{}{Y’you’ve been to Vault City? Then you t’tell me wh’what you think the chances of g'getting h’help from those bigots is. M’might as well watch a p’paper dog chase an asbestos c’cat through hell.}"
    The Chosen One: "{251}{}{I’m sorry to hear that, but I think you’re right. Let me ask you about something else.}"
    (Lenny's dialogue)
  85. Ghoul Rangers are widespread and many veterans are ghouls.
  86. The Lone Wanderer: "What can you tell me about Mister Crowley?"
    Greta: "He's an odd one. Why just a few months ago he decided he didn't like people calling us zombies. No Ghoul likes to be called a zombie, but Crowley was going up to humans and almost daring them to do it."
    (Greta's dialogue)
  87. Lone Wanderer: "All true, except for the part about the mutants, the water and the whore."
    Crowley: "Ha, ha! I like a human that knows his place. Too many of you think we're all just zombies. They don’t know, or don’t care, that we’re just as human as they are inside. We bleed! We hurt! We regret! And you know what really pisses me off? They think the only way to kill us is to shoot us in the head, like in the old zombie stories, and that will put us out of our misery. Hey, I know! Maybe you could help me even the score."
    (Crowley's dialogue)
  88. Exploration Database, Feral Ghouls
  89. Chosen One: "On second thought, I must have a hole in my head for wanting to buy drinks for a bunch of rotting zombies."
    Wooz: "Zombies? Fuck you! We’re ghouls. Zombies are a type of undead with no free will. Although we share certain physical characteristics -- most notably, the rotting flesh and characteristic morbidity -- we are creatures of free will. Allow me to demonstrate.
    (Wooz' dialogue)
  90. Children of the Cathedral guard's dialogue: "I dunno. I can tell you one thing, whatever you can say about the religion, they're not amateurs. They came in and organized this place like clockwork. This isn't just another band of mindless zombies."
  91. Courier: "You cheapass zombie. You need to pay my extra fee."
    Grecks: "[FAILED] Hey, I'm tapped out, man. I've got nothing left but the clothes on my back."
    (Grecks' dialogue)
  92. Courier: "Thanks for the caps, now enjoy the zombie afterlife."
    Grecks: "Oh God! Help! Help!"
    (Grecks' dialogue)
  93. Lone Wanderer: "What the hell's a Ghoul anyway? Some kind of diseased human?"
    Gustavo: "The radiation slowly eats away their brain, then they go zombie on you. It's better for everyone to kill them before all that, if you ask me."
    (Gustavo's dialogue)
  94. Lone Wanderer: "Okay. What's the plan?"
    Crowley: "Not everyone is as sympathetic to Ghouls as you are. In fact some humans are downright bigots. They treat us like zombies, calling us brain eaters and shufflers. Well, I'm going to make them pay. Uh...before I get into the details, you don't have anything against killing do you?"
    (Crowley's dialogue)
  95. The Vault Dweller: "So what are you doing here?"
    Ganger: "I'm supposed to make sure no one goes by. Dis is Zombie house."
    The Vault Dweller: "What's a Zombie?"
    Ganger: "Not a what . . . A WHO. We are the Zombies. If we do good, Set'll make us one of his guards. Now that's all I'm gonna tell you."
    The Vault Dweller: "Nah, I want to go in."
    Ganger: "I don't think so. Get out before I call the boyz over and dance on your face."
    The Vault Dweller: "Is that a threat?"
    Ganger: "It was. Now it's a fact. ZOMBIES!"
    (Ganger's dialogue)
  96. Courier: "Where'd you get that Vaquero outfit?"
    Raul Tejada: "I found it in a costume shop. It was sort of my calling card, you know? "Raul the Ghoul, the zombie vaquero of Mexico City."
    (Raul Tejada's dialogue)


  1. Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition p.69: "Desmond the Ghoul
    Before the bombs dropped, Desmond was a player in international intelligence at the highest levels. Desmond's motives and obsessions have been scarcely affected by the apocalyptic devastation of the planet. Desmond and those he would consider his peers knew for some time that the Great War was inevitable. Desmond himself could have been directly involved in the actions leading up to the nuclear exchange.
    Facing the nuclear holocaust, global leaders and members of the intelligence community made their personal bids for survival in the new world. F.E.V., cryogenic stasis, AI consciousness, even—in Desmond's case—controlled exposure to normally lethal doses of radiation were among the wildly risky and experimental techniques pursued in the name of survival in a world without modern infrastructure. Old rivalries and vendettas were not forgotten in the ashes of nuclear winter. Those who managed to survive quickly set about doing what the bombs had not—wiping out any remnants of the Old World that may be a threat to personal and political agendas. Now, even so long after they should all have died naturally, these scattered figures seek power and jealously guard their secrets. Desmond's mission has long since ceased to be political or ideological. He knew—as experience has proven tenfold—that as long as any of his colleagues lived, he would be hunted. His purpose is simple: kill or be killed."
    (Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition Wasteland Census)
  2. Fallout Bible 0: "2083 Summer The city of Necropolis founded by the ghoul survivors of Vault 12 (and the US citizens that fled to Bakersfield when the bombs fell)."
  3. Fallout Bible 0: "2084 Spring Set takes control of Necropolis, wresting control from the original Overseer. The Vault 12 Overseer, not willing to take a dirtnap, is driven north and history loses sight of him."
  4. Fallout Bible 0: "2157 The Master learns the location of the Bakersfield Vault, Vault 12, and sends a detachment of super mutants there to seize the vault. Many ghouls are snapped like twigs in the attack, and Set finally parleys with the super mutants, telling them that the ghouls are the Vault survivors the super mutants are looking for. The super mutants, angered at failing to find an intact Vault, set up a small garrison at the watershed to watch the inhabitants and insure Set's... cooperation in the war to come."
  5. Fallout 2 manual
  6. Fallout Bible 0: "2185 Fall Marcus and Jacob, along with the trail of ghouls, humans, and super mutants, found the community of Broken Hills."
  7. Fallout Bible 5: "14. One thing - what's happened to Junktown? Was it just too little to be it's own state? Or maybe it has managed to survive as an independent enclave inside NCR, a hive of scum and villainy, so to speak. And what kind of folks would live in Glow? After all, that place must still, well, glow, at least somewhat. Ghouls?
    Junktown became part of NCR as part of the state of Shady, and it was one of the first provisional states, considering it was one of the first (and most trustworthy) of the Shady Sands trading partners during its early formation. Its alliance with Shady Sands did cause some alarm from the caravans in the Hub, but it didn't hurt the Hub communities any... and the Hub eventually became part of NCR as well.
    As for the Glow (or the state of Dayglow), most of the state is actually north and west of the glow, but they are still able to see the Glow from their borders. A number of ghouls are rumored to live there now, as part of the Great Migration from Necropolis - once the ghouls learned of West Tek, they were eager to see if they could scavenge technology from the abandoned center. Some ghouls formed partnerships with scavenging companies from New Adytum and the Hub and have built quite a profitable corporation from their salvage efforts. At least one super mutant, a refugee from the Cathedral, was also rumored to be working with the ghouls and humans in Dayglow."
  8. Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition p.41: "New California Republic
    The New California Republic was born from the remnants of the survivors of Vault 15 and the small walled community they founded, Shady Sands. Under the leadership of Aradesh, and with the assistance of the Vault Dweller (who saved Tandi, Aradesh's daughter and a future president of the NCR), the community prospered. Trade routes with other settlements allowed cultural exchange, and a movement to form a national entity gradually took root and won popular acceptance. In 2186, the town of Shady Sands changed its name to "New California Republic" and formed a trial council government to draft a constitution. Four more settlements joined the council, and in 2189 the NCR was voted into existence as a sprawling federation of five states: Shady Sands, Los Angeles, Maxson, Hub, and Dayglow.
    By post-apocalyptic standards, the NCR is a paragon of economic success and good ethical character: political enfranchisement, rule of law, a reasonable degree of physical security, and a standard of living better than mere subsistence are daily realities for it's 700,000+ citizens. Currently, the NCR in a state of transition, with rapid economic growth and a sea change in political leadership endangering its grand humanitarian ideals. Nowhere is this more evident than in the Mojave, where the occupation of Hoover Dam has improved access to electricity and water, but at the cost of straining its budget and embroiling its armed forces in a morally corrosive imperialist project.
    The NCR government's aim is to annex New Vegas as the republic's sixth state. While it already controls Hoover Dam, its treaty with Mr. House and the three families compels it to allot one-fifth of the dam's electrical and water production to local use free of charge. Adding injury to insult, the NCR is locked into protecting New Vegas from invasion by Caesar's legion even as it receives not one cap in tax revenue from the Strip's highly lucrative resort operations. NCR citizens in the Mojave have largely come here for economic reasons, whether as paid citizen soldiers or as prospectors and fortune-seekers."
    (Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide faction profiles)
  9. Fallout Bible 0:
    "2235 While there had already been a small number of ghouls in Gecko at this time, more come to the area, and the town of Gecko is formed. The new influx of ghouls bring scavenged technology and know-how, and the power plant in Gecko becomes operational later that year. Vault City looks upon their new neighbors with growing concern."
    "2238 Harold arrives in Gecko, and (with a lot of shaking of his head) he does his best to help the ghouls with the running of the Nuclear Power Plant."
  10. Question: "No ghouls or supermutants in ceasars legion....explain"
    Joshua Sawyer: "It's hard to brainwash people who have been alive for a hundred+ years. More importantly, non-feral ghouls and SMs are also a tiny fragment of the population. Caesar doesn't really consider them to be that relevant in the overall struggle for the Mojave."
    Josh Sawyer Formspring answers
  11. Fallout 2 Official Strategies & Secrets p.36: "Ghouls"
    "Ghouls were once humans, but they were caught outside of a protective Vault when the bombs dropped. The same radiation that turned their flesh into parched leather has given them an incredibly long life span. Those closest to the blast zones are still so radioactive that they continue to glow. These Glowing Ones, as they're called, have had some of their intellect burned away as well. Shunned by the people of the Wastes, most Ghouls have little to live for."
  12. Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition p.75: "Greta
    Greta and Carol have been together for a long time. In fact, it was Greta who convinced Carol to open Carol's Place. Carol takes care of the desk while Greta cooks and serves the food. Well, most humans wouldn't call it food, but Ghouls have superhuman intestinal fortitude."
    (Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition Wasteland Census)
  13. Fallout Official Survival Guide p.107: "Glowing Ones"
    "These are ghouls that have been irradiated so badly they actually glow. You may find some of these living incandescent bulbs in the sewers beneath the Necropolis, or in cages, as light sources, in Set's palace. If they get too close to you, you can take hits from radiation."
  14. Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition p.457: "Equality
    By law, the NCR prohibits persecution and discrimination on the basis of gender, ethnicity, sexuality, or religious belief (so long as said religion does not advocate violence). Legal protection of Ghouls and other mutants was added in 2205, though enforcement of these rights has been spotty. For the most part, the NCR's practices live up to its ideals, but there has been some retrenchment since the death of President Tandi. Aaron Kimball's popularity was amplified by a reactionary undercurrent, especially among males, calling out a need for a "strong man" to lead the NCR forward. In the years since Kimball took office, male military officers have been promoted disproportionately to females, and discourse arguing the differences between males and females has reappeared."
    (Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide; Behind the Bright Lights & Big City)
  15. Fallout Bible #0
  16. Fallout Bible #9
  17. vault13.net
  18. Kal-El Bogdanove on Reddit:
    BillyH666: "One nitpick I have is of the Unknown Ghoul holotape in Harper's Ferry (Safe Haven I think?). Supposed to be a ghoul but the voice is silky smooth. Doesn't seem to match up :P"
    TheYoungGriffin: "HaventIn-game spelling gotten there yet, but maybe it's because it's still a relatively fresh ghoul. All the ones we meet in later Fallout games are hundreds of years old."
    KalElBogdanove: "Hi! Voice director for the game here. You are correct! Light texture is the result of a fresh ghoul. Thanks for playing!"