This page is about the soft drink. For the pre-War company, see Nuka-Cola Corporation.
For a list of variants available in the games, see List of Nuka-Cola variants.

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Nuka-Cola is the flagship product of the Nuka-Cola Corporation and one of the symbols of United States culture. Introduced in 2044, it rapidly dominated the soft drink market, eventually becoming the most popular soda on the market and a staple of American culture.[1] Bottled and distributed nationwide, Nuka-Cola was available in such numbers that even two centuries after the Great War put a stop to all bottling operations, Nuka-Cola bottles can still be found in the wastelands in large quantities.[2] In the aftermath of the Great War, Nuka-Cola bottle caps became the de facto currency in most post-War societies.[3]

Background

Nuka-Cola entered the beverage market in 2044, with the invention of the soft drink by John-Caleb Bradberton after two years of experimentation.[1] It contained 120% of the recommended daily allowance of sugar, and took the United States market by storm, and within a year could be purchased nationwide.[4] Its popularity rapidly increased and within several years it was the most popular beverage across the globe.[5][4]

Additional formula research resulted in numerous flavor variations, popular additions including cherry, grape, and orange released just a few years after the drink debuted.[6] Whenever the company encountered competition, it would attempt to deal with it aggressively, attempting to buy out competitors. Failing to do so, such as in the case of Sunset Sarsaparilla in 2058 and Vim! Pop Incorporated in 2077, the company attempted to release a competing drinks accompanied by a massive promotional campaigns.[7][8]

The latest Nuka-Cola taste variant was created in October 2076, dubbed Nuka-Cola Quantum based on an isotope of strontium-90, the first cases of which hit the market in select cities on the East Coast, like Boston and Washington, D.C. before the war.[9][10] In the post-War world, Nuka-Cola continued to be the "number one choice of refreshment among armageddon's survivors."[4] Despite being warm and flat, the combination of pre-War chemicals such as potassium benzoate, citric acid, and caffeine still holds the allegiance of many and continues to addict wastelanders across the wastelands.[11][12]

Production

Ingredients

The unique taste of Nuka-Cola is the result of a combination of 17 fruit essences, balanced to enhance the classic cola flavor.[13] Additives such as aspartame, phosphoric and citric acid, caramel color, caffeine, and potassium benzoate were added to carbonated water along with additional natural flavors, resulting in the product's formula.[12] [1]

It was marketed as being fortified with vitamins, minerals and "health tonics."[14] Ingredients were combined in just the right proportion, to the level that shortages of ingredients or changes to the recipe were noticed by consumers.[15] Frequent consumption could cause addiction, which led to splitting headaches.[16]

Bottling

The iconic curved Nuka-Cola bottle was used by the company ever since its introduction in 2044. The "Dazzling Blue" color of the glass was popular with consumers. Market research in 2052 indicated that 86 out of 100 polled consumers chose blue as their favorite color.[17] Nuka-Cola was eventually forced to replace the curved design with a rocket-shaped bottle, a result of losing a long-running litigation over patent infringement.[18] However, consumers reacted positively to the new bottle and Nuka-Cola's sales increased.[18][1]

Nuka-Cola was also distributed via soda fountains and cans. Cans were distributed in the Midwestern United States[19][20] and soda fountains were installed as an amenity in Appalachia's Whitespring Resort.

Distribution

The surge in popularity led to Nuka-Cola spreading nationwide. By 2067, there was a vending machine on almost every street in America, offering regular Nuka-Cola and any of its variants.[21] Popularity of its variants strongly depended on the region, with western states strongly favoring Nuka-Cola Quartz, Victory and the root-beer flavored Wild (competing with Sunset Sarsaparilla). More urbanized eastern states favored classic tastes, such as Nuka-Grape, Nuka-Cola Orange and Nuka-Cherry.[1]

Logotype and branding

Zap that thirst!— Nuka-Cola slogan in the latter half of 2077

Nuka-Girl ad

The original branding of Nuka-Cola was very basic but extremely effective. Marketed towards the family (but largely the children), and would even be swept up in the jingoism of the American culture of the time with ads and event featuring prominent military weaponry[22][23] and would even paint power armor in the branding of Nuka-Cola.[24]

However, a lawsuit that settled against the Nuka-Cola Corporation for use of Nuka-Cola's bottle design allowed them to rebrand starting with the product itself. Nuka-Cola would take a radical change to Nuka-Cola's image to a Space Age theme with bottles taking on the shape of a rocket ship.[18] To compliment the new rocket ship bottle, a mascot from 2062 would begin to see reuse because of her glove-like fit the Space Age theme: the Nuka-Girl in a skimpy spacesuit with her ray-gun the Thirst Zapper.[25]

The logotype of Nuka-Cola would utilize basic brush script font in white with a unique 'N' and additional brush strokes for the hyphen and could also be underlined or stacked based on layout. Red would be the only color to compliment the white text, which both in turn compliment the black hue of Nuka-Cola. In the latter part of 2077, an orange stroke began to appear in advertisements but did not become ubiquitous because of the Great War. The use of this logotype is the most common among Nuka-Cola's products, but there were some problems with consistency in advertisements.[26]

To differentiate variant flavors of Nuka-Cola from one another, different logos would also be developed for each flavor, but each one would complement the base Nuka-Cola logotype which was always printed in smaller type on the flavor's label. This branding consistency would also carry over to locations, such as Nuka-World which uses the same font type for its logo.

Competitors

Nuka-Cola became a nationally-recognized brand through a combination of aggressive marketing and hostile corporate practices, including takeovers and undermining its competition. The preferred approach was to acquire popular local sodas and rebrand or remarket them as Nuka-Cola variants. Such was the case with two of its flagship flavors, Nuka-Cherry and Nuka-Grape, originally Merle's Very Cherry Soda and Grape-Pearl Soda.[27]

Larger companies were typically more resilient and rebuffed Nuka-Cola's advances. One such case is Sunset Sarsaparilla, a sarsaparilla popular in the southwestern United States. When negotiations with the company fell through in 2058, Nuka-Cola attempted to compete by launching a rival soda, Nuka-Cola Wild.[8]

Another competitor is Vim! soda, a popular Maine drink. Owned by a single family, Vim! repeatedly refused offers from Nuka-Cola. In response, the company sued Vim! for copyright infringement (over the new Vim! Quartz soda) and committed industrial espionage and sabotage of its operations, effectively immune to prosecution thanks to John-Caleb Bradberton's ties with the government and the military.[28]

Variants

Numerous variants of the Nuka-Cola were introduced, offering different flavors and taste profiles. Joining classic Nuka-Cola, alternative fruit-flavored beverages were instant success.[6]

Notes

In the Fallout 4 intro, Nate's great-great grandmother is seen sitting beside a bottle of Nuka-Cola in 1945, despite it not being invented until 2044.

Behind the scenes

  • During the 2008 E3 as a promotional item, people were given a real drinkable version of Nuka-Cola. It greatly resembles the 1950s look of the Coca-Cola brand bottles.
  • During 2015/2016 a real version of Nuka Cola Quantum could be purchased online and in Target stores worldwide.

Gallery

References

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 World of Refreshment PA tour
  2. Fallout 4 loading screens: "Nuka-Cola, the most popular American soda before the war, manufactured so many bottles that the drink can still be found and enjoyed now, more than 200 years later."
  3. Fallout 4 loading screens: "All across the United States, in the aftermath of the Great War, the bottle caps of Nuka-Cola are the most commonly used currency."
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 Sierra Petrovita: "When Nuka-Cola was invented by John-Caleb Bradberton in 2044, it quickly became the world's most popular soft drink. The wonder drink soon drew a dedicated following which prompted the Nuka-Cola Corporation to release many promotional items like these. By 2067, a Nuka-Cola machine such as this rare pristine model could be found on almost every street in America. Even in today's crazy world, Nuka-Cola is still the number one choice of refreshment among Armageddon's survivors."
    (Sierra Petrovita's dialogue)
  5. Fallout 4 loading screens: "Amateur chemist John-Caleb Bradberton discovered the formula for Nuka-Cola in 2044. Within a year, Nuka-Cola could be purchased across the entire United States."
  6. 6.0 6.1 Nuka-World loading screens: "Nuka-Cola introduced fruit-flavored beverages such as Nuka-Cherry, Nuka-Grape and Nuka-Orange only a few short years after the corporation was founded. They were an instant success."
  7. Nuka-Town ground terminal entries; Nuka-World informational terminal
  8. 8.0 8.1 Nuka-World loading screens: "Although the Nuka-Cola Corporation would never admit it, Nuka-Cola Wild was released to directly compete with Sunset Sarsaparilla after attempts to acquire that company met with failure."
  9. Nuka-Cola plant terminal entries; Packing line terminal, Company Announcement
  10. Bradberton's office terminal entries; Bradberton's project terminal, 10-20-2076 JCB
  11. Dugan, Sierra Petrovita, Sheffield, Zip
  12. 12.0 12.1 Dugan: "{123}{}{Carbonated Water, Caramel Color, Aspartame, Phosphoric Acid, Potassium Benzoate (To Protect Taste), Natural Flavors, Citric Acid, Caffeine}"
    (Dugan's dialogue)
  13. Nuka-World loading screens: "Nuka-Cola's award-winning taste is derived from a secret combination of seventeen fruit essences which are balanced to enhance, but not overwhelm, that classic cola flavor."
  14. The Lone Wanderer: "Never mind. I think you've had enough sugar for one day."
    Zip: "But Nuka-Cola's fortified with vitaminerals and health tonics! It even says so on the label! That means it's healthy for me!"
    (Zip's dialogue)
  15. Lone Wanderer: "The taste... I could never get used to it."
    Sierra Petrovita: "No no no! You're mistaken! The flavor is the essence of seventeen different fruits mixed in just the right proportion to give the beverage that delicious taste. In fact, in the Great Passion Fruit Famine of 2044, people actually noticed the taste difference when the flavor was changed!"
    (Sierra Petrovita's dialogue)
  16. Dugan: "{116}{}{It is the stuff of life . . . Well actually, if I don't drink it on an hourly basis I get a splitting headache.}"
    (DUGAN.MSG)
  17. The Lone Wanderer: "Why a blue bottle if the soda is brown? That's just weird."
    Sierra Petrovita: "Aha! That's where you're wrong! Market research done in 2052 said that the blue color was the favorite in 86 people out of 100 polled. And the particular hue of blue is Dazzling Blue, scientifically proven to be the most pleasing of all blues!"
    (Sierra Petrovita's dialogue)
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 Nuka-World loading screens: "Nuka-Cola's signature rocket-shaped bottle replaced the traditional curved bottle when a rival corporation successfully sued for patent infringement. Fortunately, the public saw the new bottle as an improvement and Nuka-Cola's sales increased."
  19. Nuka-Cola vending machine: "{105}{}{ skillfully dodges a can of Nuka-Cola.}"
    (Zinuke.msg)
  20. Canned Nuka-Cola
  21. Sierra Petrovita: "When Nuka-Cola was invented by John-Caleb Bradberton in 2044, it quickly became the world's most popular soft drink. The wonder drink soon drew a dedicated following which prompted the Nuka-Cola Corporation to release many promotional items like these. By 2067, a Nuka-Cola machine such as this rare pristine model could be found on almost every street in America. Even in today's crazy world, Nuka-Cola is still the number one choice of refreshment among Armageddon's survivors."
    (Sierra Petrovita's dialogue)
  22. File:NukaBreak.png
  23. RobCo Battlezone
  24. Star Control's Quantum X-01 power armor and Nuka T-51 power armor
  25. Fallout 4 loading screens: "In 2062, the Nuka-Girl Rocketsuit costume was released to retailers just in time for Halloween. Its popularity was so overwhelming, the stores couldn't keep up with the demand."
  26. Advertisements throughout the Fallout series
  27. See Nuka-Cola Corporation for details.
  28. Vim! Pop factory terminal entries
Nuka-Cola
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