“My boys are huntin' 'Lurks. Finest meat you can get, and it don't move around in your stomach like Mole Rat does. Right dangerous, those things. Just as soon take your head off as look at'cha. Watch yourself out here. They're all over.”— Sparkle, Fallout 3
All mirelurks, except for kings, are protected by a thick shell that is difficult to penetrate, even with powerful ballistic weapons such as the Gauss rifle. Mirelurk meat, especially the soft shell variety, grants HP replenishment.
Grandma Sparkle tells the player character that mirelurk meat is "the best meat you can get out here." A mirelurk cakesrecipe is found in a fridge in the Anchorage War Memorial, but it cannot be made by the player character.
A Brotherhood initiate can be found burning a dead mirelurk with a flamer near the Jefferson Memorial after Project Purity becomes operational. He remarks that the creatures are dying in the new pure water and appear to require contaminated water to live. There is also a Brotherhood Knight patrolling the steel deck, who mentions that they are encouraged to take potshots at the dying mirelurks.
With Broken Steel installed and the main missions completed, mirelurk hunter corpses found in the Tidal Basin will be labeled as regular mirelurks.
Mirelurks appear in Fallout 3 and its add-on, Point Lookout.
Behind the scenes
The mirelurks were created and modeled by Jonah Lobe, who was inspired by old rubber-costumed monsters from 1950s pulp films.[Non-canon 1]
A humanoid, mutated catfish known as a "catfish mirelurk" appears in The Art of Fallout 3, the art book available with the collector's edition of Fallout 3.[Non-canon 2]
PCPlaystation 3Xbox 360 Mirelurks killed in water will often flip over on their fronts and twitch. This is purely a graphical glitch related to their wireframe. Sometimes they will twitch so much they fall right through the floor, or become trapped in walls and doors while constantly playing a collision noise that can alert other enemies. [verified]
PCPlaystation 3 Sometimes when mirelurks are killed on land, body parts will sink into the textures on the floor, as much as half their body, and the remaining parts will flail and bounce. [verified]