The SSN-37-1A (called sub recovery site in the Pip-Boy map) is a covert Chinese submarine lodged in the shallow waters off the coast of Point Lookout in 2277. It was in the process of being recovered by the U.S. military pre-War.
The SSN-37-1A is a Chinese spy submarine sent to patrol hostile waters surrounding Point Lookout. It sank before the nuclear phase of the Great War, and can be found at the sub recovery site. As for remnants of equipment, all main systems seem to be offline due to flooding and centuries of inactivity. There is no working radio, navigation, weapons or targeting parameters for the sub itself. However, there is a radio (or radio type piece) that is entirely rusted brown and dead. There is no accessible onboard AI nor navigational software. The electricity still works, and there are backup generators in the rear. Externally, there are no signs of torpedo tube hatches and internally, there is no torpedo room.
Its mission was as follows:
CHINESE NAVAL COMMAND
Vessel SSN-37-1A is ordered to patrol hostile waters between:
+38 3' 36.00", -76 18' 36.00"
+37 49' 41.61", -76 0' 37.02"
+37 5' 60.00", -76 1' 12.00"
Variations from patrol are tolerated as required by evasive circumstances. Crew is under strict instructions not to engage enemy if detected. Self-destruct protocol must be initiated in event of imminent capture. Status updates are required at six hour intervals by one-way burst comm on orbital frequency #K17.18.v121.
Above the waterline are a small stranded boat and a buoy. Below, is a medium-sized submarine with a hatch on top.
The submarine, based on her external size, is extremely compact inside. There is only one accessible room, with just two beds available. The ladder leads straight into the roof and a pipe spraying water is also severed in another point but not leaking. There is a silver mainframe computer at the forward end of the chamber, and a generator leaking some kind of green goo to the aft. The sub has about a foot of irradiated water along the floor.
There are only two bunks in SSN-37-1A, suggesting a small crew. There was one surviving Chinese submariner extracted from SSN-37-1A: John Doe. He was transferred to Turtledove Detention Camp after his capture. It is noted in his interrogation report that he was "demonstrating extraordinary fortitude for a relatively low-ranking grunt." The fate of the skipper is revealed in the same report "I'm sure this one would have gone the same way as his skipper if the cyanide capsule in his molar hadn't been a dud."
- On the terminal screen, there's a Chinese idiom "Shì shàng wú nán shì, zhi pà you xin rén" (世上无难事, 只怕有心人) which briefly translate as "There's nothing impossible in the world if you put your mind to it."
- One will need to swim through irradiated water in order to access the sub, and there is constant radiation inside the vessel.
- The vessel is adjacent to another vessel that the player cannot enter. Under the adjacent vessel is a locked safe and two first aid boxes.
- This location is unmarked on the map even with the Explorer perk until the player is told to go there during The Velvet Curtain.
- Discovering this location is not needed for the Bog Walker achievement.
- A personal footlocker (locked-Average) is below the bottom cot.
- This sub will be destroyed by the end of side quest The Velvet Curtain.
- Despite the sub's beached condition, its nuclear power source is still functioning; in addition to the terminal and lighting, the sub's bilge pumps still appear to be powered, given that several pipes are leaking large amounts of fluid, but the sub is not filled with water.
Behind the scenes
- The designation SSN (Submersible Ship, Nuclear) is used by the majority of NATO countries including the United Kingdom's Royal Navy and the United States Navy to designate nuclear powered attack (or fleet) submarines and it is highly unlikely that the Chinese would use the same designation, especially on a reconnaissance sub. However, it can be assumed that the submarine was originally American-built, and was captured by the Chinese in a certain period of the Sino-American War.
- The coordinates refer to actual points around the Chesapeake Bay (Norfolk, Virginia, USA) into which e.g. the Potomac River flows: Google Maps Overview.