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The Glowing Sea is the most highly irradiated region in the entire Commonwealth. According to local legend, it was ground zero for the high-yield nuclear blast that devastated most of Massachusetts.Fallout 4 loading screen hint

The Glowing Sea is a region of the Commonwealth in 2287. As a whole, it is the largest highly-irradiated area resulting from the detonation of a single nuclear device in the entire Fallout series.[Non-game 1]


Originally the communities southwest of Boston proper, the area southwest of the end of the southern freeway connected to Mass Pike Interchange was ground zero for a massive nuclear detonation during the Great War. Not technically a "sea," the territory is rather a large isolated zone of heavily irradiated landscape. Most of the Glowing Sea consists of scorched earth spotted with radioactive ponds, charred trees, wrecked cars, and heaps of rubble. The few remaining buildings that weren't reduced to thinly-spread debris are half-buried by landslides and sinkholes. Rain clouds that pass over the Glowing Sea become irradiated, spreading radiation to other parts of the Commonwealth wasteland in the form of radstorms.[Non-game 2]

Despite these dangers, the Glowing Sea does harbor life, including humans. At the center of the region is a settlement known as the Crater of Atom, occupied by humans from the Church of the Children of Atom. The sickly greenish-yellow glow emitting from the crater can be seen from far across the Commonwealth. Southwest of the Glowing Sea, outside the boundaries of the map, is the rocky cave, inhabited by Virgil.


The Glowing Sea is extremely dangerous, and should not be explored at a low level or without adequate supplies and protection. The entire region is heavily irradiated, causing at least 10 rads/second in most areas, killing unprotected players in less than two minutes. Drinking water from local sources in the Glowing Sea inflicts 10 rads rather than the normal 3 rads, and immersion in open water inflicts 20 rads/second rather than the normal 10 rads/second. To survive, one should bring an ample supply of RadAway and Rad-X to minimize exposure. Further protection can be achieved by wearing rad-resistant armor, such as power armor or a hazmat suit (though power armor gives better protection from enemy attacks). Completing The Secret of Cabot House by siding with Lorenzo Cabot will grant access to an unlimited supply of Mysterious serum, which heals 10 rads/second for one hour.

Perhaps more dangerous than the radiation is the local wildlife, as only the hardiest creatures can survive in this hostile environment: packs of deathclaws, radscorpions, and mutant insects such as bloatflies, bloodbugs, and stingwings roam the wastes, attacking anything in their path. Useful resources (such as food, chems, and ammo) are scarce in this hellish landscape, although the various ruins and wrecked vehicles scattered about the area contain modest amounts of loot. These ruins hold their own dangers, however, in the form of large packs of feral ghouls and the occasional mole rat swarm.


Notable loot[]


The Glowing Sea appears only in Fallout 4.



  1. Fallout 4 Vault Dweller's Survival Guide Collector's Edition pp. 353-354: "ZONE 5: NATICK AND THE GLOWING SEA
    Complete and utter desolation as far as your blistered, irradiated eyes can see. A perpetual cloud of radiation haze. Fierce and toxic storms. If the Deathclaws and Radscorpions don't get you, the radiation sickness might. This is the epicenter of a massive (and highly successful) nuclear strike centered on what is known colloquially as the Crater of Atom. While the northern and riverside fringes of this zone are relatively free of radiation, be sure to stock up on chems and wear proper protective attire once you're south of Natick. Welcome to the Glowing Sea."
    (Fallout 4 Vault Dweller's Survival Guide Map)
  2. E3 2015 panel by Todd Howard