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Have you come to Nelson seeking your death, profligate?Legion explorer guarding Nelson

Nelson is a settlement in the Mojave Wasteland in 2281. Recently, the town was occupied by Caesar's Legion following the Battle of Nelson. It is located southwest of Camp Forlorn Hope and east of Novac.


After the Great War, miners attempted to gather resources from the area.[1] By 2281, the New California Republic occupied the town and had established a military camp. The area was of high value due to its strategic location, between Camp Forlorn Hope and Camp Searchlight, both for logistics planning and to plug the gap between the bases and cover the Colorado River.[Non-canon 1][Non-canon 2] Shortly after the NCR occupation, before the troopers managed to settle in, Decanus Dead Sea's Legion contingent launched an attack.[2] With Searchlight recently destroyed and Camp Forlorn Hope stretched thin, no counter-attack materialized. The town has remained under Legion control ever since.[3]

Under orders from Caesar to demoralize troops in the area,[4] Dead Sea has ordered the execution of captured NCR troopers by hacking them apart, forcing them to jump off the cliff overlooking the river, and crucifying the remaining three, all within sight of surrounding NCR forces.[5] To maintain pressure after taking Nelson, Dead Sea has launched raids against Camp Forlorn Hope to the north.[4]


The mining camp and town itself are enclosed by a chainlink fence and surrounded by bunkers made from sandbags. The tallest point in Nelson lies up a hill on the northern edge of town where Legion soldiers monitor the area from an overlook. The NCR has established a roadblock on the road leading to Nelson. The town itself is centered around an open-air courtyard, now containing three crucified NCR troopers.

Surviving houses line the perimeter, used for a variety of purposes, including storage, an armory, mess hall, and housing. A small fortified position on the terrace below the town overlooks the Colorado River, with three graves nearby. A pair of barracks face the center of town. The barracks to the west contain the bodies of two NCR troopers and the eastern barracks contain another deceased NCR trooper as well as two recruit legionaries and their leader, Dead Sea.

Notable loot

Related quests


  • Nelson will periodically be attacked by a squad of three NCR troopers armed with caravan shotguns from Camp Forlorn Hope. Unless the player character has already killed most of the Nelson guards, the legionaries will be able to easily repel the attack. This may trigger when visiting Nelson after starting the Restoring Hope quest.
  • A generator can be found near the barracks that Dead Sea resides in. Turning it off will turn off the lights on the telephone poles and inside the barracks. This can most easily be seen at night.
  • If the Courier manages to annihilate all the legionaries in Nelson, the soldiers at Camp Forlorn Hope will talk about the player character freeing Nelson.
  • After Nelson has been liberated from the Legion, the NCR guards there will have the same dialogue as the troopers in Camp Forlorn Hope.
  • Killing Dead Sea silently and talking to the legionaries outside may cause them to comment that Nelson was slaughtered to the last man even though they're still alive.


Nelson appears only in Fallout: New Vegas.

Behind the scenes


  • Playstation 3Playstation 3 Xbox 360Xbox 360 After the NCR has spawned and the Legionaries are gone, there may be 3 Legionaries running into each other in front of the campfire. [verified]
  • Playstation 3Playstation 3 When completing a quest for Dead Sea, sometimes when leaving Nelson, near the guard tower facing Forlorn Hope, the Legion guards may attack the player character regardless of reputation. Killing them results in a loss of reputation. If this occurs, reload a save, circumventing the Legion soldiers. [verified]
  • PCPC Playstation 3Playstation 3 Instead of three NCR troopers attacking Nelson, a group of roughly twelve may attack. They will kill any Legion soldiers or mongrels outside, and then stand in a circle in the center of the town. [verified]
  • PCPC Sometimes the NCR soldiers that are "tied up" are simply standing in front of the crosses. They appear to be "untied" but still need to be untied.[verified]



  1. Rose of Sharon Cassidy: "Guess the miners got fucked."
    "Where's the mine from here?"
    "If this place got hit, Novac's next."
    (Rose of Sharon Cassidy's dialogue) Note: VCassLocationNelson
  2. The Courier: "Tell me about Nelson."
    Hanlon: "Nelson was barely set up. We had a big stretch of unprotected land between Forlorn Hope and Searchlight, and Nelson was the solution. A decanus named Dead Sea took the place and caused a lot of damage."
    (Hanlon's dialogue)
  3. The Courier: "What happened here?"
    Milo: "Troopers tried moving down from Forlorn Hope because we got this big gap between there and Searchlight. Turns out we were spread too thin. We took our sweet ass time setting up in Nelson and the Legion managed to hop over the Colorado and attack before things were settled."
    (Milo's dialogue)
  4. 4.0 4.1 The Courier: "Why haven't you attacked the enemy?"
    Dead Sea: "I have attacked the enemy. I led the assault on Nelson with two contubernia against twice our number. It is Caesar's wish that we hold this position. Our mere presence this side of the Colorado humiliates and demoralizes the enemy."
    (Dead Sea's dialogue)
  5. The Courier: "You're demoralizing the enemy by leaving them alone?"
    Dead Sea: "I do not question Caesar's will! I do not second-guess! I butchered this town. Those who weren't hacked limb from limb were forced to throw themselves from the cliffs. Three more, I have just crucified. All this, in full view of the enemy's spotters to the north. Yes, our presence here demoralizes the enemy."
    (Dead Sea's dialogue)


  1. Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition pp. 417-418: "[6.02] Camp Forlorn Hope
    After NCR captured Hoover Dam, it took them a while to fully reinforce the river to the south. The first camp that was established was Camp Forlorn Hope; an improvised mess of tin shacks, salvaged rubble from Boulder City, tents, and lots of sandbags, it is the most pathetic-looking of all NCR's camps, but the one that sees the most action. It only exists at all because of the natural spring there (in fact the camp is named for the spring). Recently, Caesar's Legion captured NCR's logistical/planning forces in the ruins of the small, ruined town of Nelson, a disaster that has disrupted Forlorn's Hopes attempts to patrol the western coast of the river.
    Graveyard of No Hope
    A nickname some in the camp whisper about the collection of graves of the fallen, on a two-tiered promontory behind the shacks, overlooking the Colorado River. Shoot the Bloatflies in the area for sport. Due to the height disadvantage, attack from here only if you plan to be stealthy."
    (Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition Tour of the Mojave Wasteland)
  2. Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition pp. 418-419: "[6.06] Nelson
    Nelson was a second NCR outpost, as the Republic slowly gained ground along the Colorado River to stem the tide of the Legion's advancement across Arizona. But Caesar struck back, razing Nelson, and capturing any NCR troopers that weren't executed or shot, and crucified them as an example of barbarism; to crush the NCR morale."
    (Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition Tour of the Mojave Wasteland)
  3. Megan Parks portfolio

See also