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This page is about the soft drink. For the pre-War company, see Sunset Sarsaparilla Company.
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Build Mass with Sass!— The drink's slogan

Sunset Sarsaparilla is a well-known consumable item in Fallout: New Vegas, a pure cane sugar soda that advertises its product as "the most popular Beverage in the West!"[1]


This section is transcluded from Sunset Sarsaparilla Company. To change it, please edit the transcluded page.
Beverage of the West Coast— popular phrase[2]

The Sunset Sarsaparilla Company was founded in 1918,[3] making it 126 years older than the Nuka-Cola Corporation. According to Festus, a small town saloon owner decided one day to brew a new type of soft drink. He asked his usual patrons what flavor they would want it to be, but they were of no help. However, a stranger at the end of the bar suggested he make a sarsaparilla flavored drink, and would give his family's recipe to the saloon owner if he got to sample a bottle whenever he wanted to make sure the recipe was being followed to the letter. The saloon owner agreed, thinking it would make him rich. The stranger then left to meet him the next day at sundown. The next day, the saloon owner was told by the sheriff that the stranger was killed by bandits on the side of the town road. Cursing his luck, the saloon owner closed his store early that day, just as the sun began to set. But after he locked the doors, he found a bottle with a note under it sealed with blue wax in the shape of a star. Opening it, he found the recipe of a sarsaparilla-flavored drink. After sampling the contents of the bottle, and finding it singularly delicious, he began selling Sunset Sarsaparilla and even paid for the stranger's funeral, believing that it was the least he could do for his mysterious benefactor. To this day, some bottle of Sunset Sarsaparilla have a bottle cap marked with a blue star that some say the saloon owner mandated, while some say it is the stranger continuing to sample the bottles like he was promised.[4]

After years of selling their beverage and becoming known and loved across the West Coast, the company soon decided to invest in automation and robotics, specifically with the help of RobCo Industries.[5] While the custodial staff reaped the benefits of automation,[6] the regional distribution network unfortunately suffered replacement at the hands of an experimental robot.[7][8][5]

At some point before the Great War, a TV network broadcast an advisory about the health risks of their soda, with studies claiming a wide range of harmful side effects came from having too much of it. Sunset Sarsaparilla disputed the claims as unverified and based off larger quantities of Sarsaparilla than anyone could possibly drink. Nevertheless, the company took steps to improve its PR after the story aired.[9]

By 2077, the company had continued to boom, although they struggled with sales in the Northwestern region, they sold more in the Northern and Midwestern United States, continuing to sell extremely well in the American Southwest.[10] However, by sheer luck, a rumor of a contest surfaced, telling of the company having a contest to redeem starred bottle caps for prizes. Despite the complaints of staff,[11] the company decided to promote the contest rather than denounce the rumor, due to 300% increases in sales.[12] The company also went as far as to install an automaton in the lobby of their headquarters, as well as creating an advertisement campaign heavily based on cowboys.[13]

Before the Great War, a competitor attempted to negotiate a deal to buy out the Sunset Sarsaparilla Company, but the offer was declined. On the other end of the deal was no more than John-Caleb Bradberton, founder, CEO, and president of the rival Nuka-Cola Corporation. In response to this failed deal, he commissioned the development and release of a root-beer flavored variant of his signature drink. A regional exclusive to the area surrounding the famed Nuka-World theme park, the end result was Nuka-Cola Wild, an attempt by Bradberton to capitalize on the success of the Sunset Sarsaparilla brand.[14]


The star cap story began as a simple promotional story before the Great War, yet Festus kept the story alive by motivating survivors to collect Sunset Sarsaparilla bottle caps, and as the years went by, a new legend began to circulate around the bottling headquarters in Las Vegas, which in turn led to the announcement of the running "Legend of the Star" collection campaign.[2] Stories of the contest became very distorted following the Great War, and the actual simple prize (which consisted of a retelling of the fictitious story by the company spokesbot and a small metal Sunset Sarsaparilla deputy badge) became a bloated tale of pre-War technology, weapons caches, and all sorts of other amazing loot.[15]


Sunset Sarsaparilla is a root-beer-type carbonated beverage found around New Vegas. With its easy availability and low cost, it is an excellent consumable that provides a high health regeneration effect, while also lacking the radiation present in other drinks. Thanks to these factors, it supplements the somewhat-scarce stimpaks as a primary healing item in the Mojave. Company spokesbot Festus provides a comical list of potential side effects, but only while playing in Hardcore mode does drinking Sunset Sarsaparilla have the negative effect of mildly dehydrating the Courier.


With the Honest Hearts add-on installed, the Courier can obtain a recipe and make a home-brewed version of the drink. This is identical to the standard variety.

Creation requirements

Icon range
Honest Hearts add-on
Icon level
Home-brewed Sunset Sarsaparilla (1)



Found in Sunset Sarsaparilla vending machines throughout the Mojave Wasteland.



Sales figures for the USA and Canada

  • Unlike Nuka-Cola, drinking Sunset Sarsaparilla will not give rads. The only exception to this rule is the irradiated Sunset Sarsaparilla bottles found in areas like Camp Searchlight and the Courier's Mile.
  • With each bottle consumed, the bottle cap has a 5% chance of being a Sunset Sarsaparilla star bottle cap, which can be collected for the quest The Legend of the Star.
  • The company's "Silly Ol' Advisory" names these possible side effects: "Kidney damage, nausea, digital numbness, anxiety, loss of visual acuity, dizziness, occasional nosebleeds, joint inflammation, tooth decay, sore throat, bronchitis, organ rupture, and halitosis." However, in order for those effects to happen, Festus says one must drink "a helluva lot." These side effects are not present in the game, regardless of how many bottles are drunk.
  • When drinking a Sunset Sarsaparilla, a bottle cap is given. The bottle caps, upon looking at the icon on the Pip-Boy or removing them from the inventory, are Nuka-Cola caps.
  • After completing the quest The Legend of the Star, any Sunset Sarsaparilla star bottle caps that are picked up or obtained from drinking a bottle will be added to the inventory as normal bottle caps, and will not show up as a star bottle cap.
  • The story Festus tells about the origins of Sunset Sarsaparilla does not fit with the information given. He says that before Sunset Sarsaparilla was invented, the main choices people had for drinking were water or Nuka-Cola. Nuka-Cola was founded in the year 2044, but according to the large bottle at the entrance of the Sunset Sarsaparilla headquarters, Sunset Sarsaparilla was founded in 1918, over 125 years before Nuka-Cola was. However, it is heavily implied the story was invented for the contest and is entirely fictional.
  • Canadians purchased Sunset Sarsaparilla almost as frequently as Americans, according to the sales chart.
  • As with Nuka-Cola, the empty bottle is not kept after drinking it.
  • As of 2281, the drink is 363 years old, and any bottles dating from before the Great War are at least 204 years old.
  • Sunset Sarsaparilla, like Nuka Cola, is not affected by the Survival skill and does not count towards the Desert Survivalist achievement/trophy.
  • Homebrewed Sunset Sarsaparilla can still produce a Sunset Sarsaparilla star bottle cap, despite only using regular bottle caps in its creation.

Behind the scenesEdit

  • Sarsaparilla is a type of bitter root found in Central America which was originally used for medicinal purposes; owing to the root's bitterness, it was combined with sweetened water to make dosing more palatable. In America, the bark and oil of the sassafras tree were added to the formula; this root beer eventually became a popular drink in the late-19th-century Old West. The similarity of the two roots' names led to the informal nickname of "Sasparilly."
  • The health effects of Sarsaparilla may be a reference to safrole, the aromatic oil found in sassafras roots and bark that gave traditional root beer its distinctive flavor, was banned for commercially mass-produced foods and drugs by the FDA in 1960. Laboratory animals that were given oral doses of sassafras tea or sassafras oil that contained large doses of safrole developed permanent liver damage or various types of cancer.



  1. Poster; The Most Popular Beverage in the West!
  2. 2.0 2.1 Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition p.308-309: "[2.17] Sunset Sarsaparilla Headquarters
    The old headquarters of the well-known and loved "Beverage of the West Coast," this structure features a many-faceted glass bottle of the company's signature drink, Sunset Sarsaparilla. Before the war, an urban legend circulated that if you collected bottle caps marked with a star, you could send them in to the Sunset Sarsaparilla Headquarters and receive a prize. Now, this legend has taken on a life of its own; crazed individuals stalk the Wasteland searching for "SSSs" (Sunset Sarsaparilla Stars), a fact exacerbated by an automated robotic attendant, Festus, who prompts people with an option to present their Sunset Sarsaparilla Stars. Dare you find out the truth?
    Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition p.308-309: "Festus
    Sitting in his rundown saloon, Festus is the mascot for the old Sunset Sarsaparilla Company, and here to bring you great news of a competition, and the official word on that health advisory (keeps asking!). Requesting information on Star Bottle Caps begins Side Quest: The Legend of the Star. Returning with 50 or more Star Bottle Caps starts Side Quest: A Valuable Lesson. You can also play Lucky Horseshoes (speak to Festus about the rules)."
    (Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide Collector's Edition Tour of the Mojave Wasteland)
  3. File:Sunset Sarsaparilla Logo.png
  4. The Courier: "<Deposit your Sunset Sarsaparilla Stars in the slot.>"
    Festus: "Wahoo, you did it pardner! Bully for you! Ol' Festus knew you could do it. I suppose you'll be wanting that prize now. Well then, hold onto your hat, because it's a doozy. Not many people have heard the true story behind Sunset Sarsaparilla. It's a right honor. And now, without further ado, your prize - The Legend of the Star... Looooong ago, people didn't have a heap of choices when it came to soft drinks. It was either water, or Nuka-cola. Now, the threat of legal action forces me to say that Nuka-cola is a swell beverage, but sometimes people just wanted something different, you know? So one day a man, a saloon owner in a small town, decided to make a new type of soft drink, and asked his patrons what flavor they'd like it to be. After getting no help from them, a stranger at the end of the bar suggested the man make a sarsaparilla flavored drink. The stranger said he would happily share his family's recipe for the drink, on one condition. The condition being that the stranger would be allowed to sample a bottle whenever he liked, to ensure the recipe was being followed to the letter. The man happily agreed, thinking the drink would make him rich, and the stranger promised to meet him by sundown the next day. The next morning, the sheriff stopped by and reported that the stranger's body was found on the side of the town road. He'd been killed by bandits. The man, cursing his luck, closed the saloon early that day, just as the sun began to set. But after he had locked the doors, he turned around to find an unfamiliar bottle on the bar, with a note beneath it. The note was sealed with blue wax in the shape of a star. Opening it, the man found it contained a recipe for a sarsaparilla-flavored drink. Sampling the bottle's contents and finding it singularly delicious, the man gave silent thanks to his mysterious benefactor, wherever he was. Being an honorable man, the saloon owner paid for the stranger's funeral, thinking it was the least he could do to repay him. The saloon owner went on to become rich selling the new drink, and to this day some bottles of Sunset Sarsaparilla have a blue star under their caps. Some say the saloon owner ordered it done, in honor of the stranger. Others say it's the stranger, sampling the bottles like he promised. And that's the Legend of the Star. Hope you enjoyed it, and hope you continue enjoying Sunset Sarsaparilla!"
    (Festus' dialogue)
  5. 5.0 5.1 Sunset Sarsaparilla headquarters terminal entries; How's your new toy?
  6. Sunset Sarsaparilla headquarters terminal entries; Great Job
  7. Sunset Sarsaparilla headquarters terminal entries; Check message
  8. Sunset Sarsaparilla headquarters terminal entries; Check draft
  9. Festus: " Lastly, if you're here about the health advisory that aired on channel 6 recently, say "Silly Ol' Advisory.""
    Courier: "Silly Ol' Advisory"
    Festus: "While Sunset Sarsaparilla is perfectly safe, a recent independent study - whose validity is currently being challenged - revealed the following: kidney damage, nausea, digital numbness, anxiety, loss of visual acuity, dizziness, occasional nosebleeds, joint inflammation, tooth decay, sore throat, bronchitis, organ rupture, and halitosis. Note that you'd have to drink a heap of Sunset Sarsaparilla to match the quantities used in the study. How much, you ask? A lot. A whole helluva lot. In fact, you'd have to get full as a tick on Sunset Sarsaparilla to even come close. Anyway, thanks for stopping by, partner! And keep drinking Sunset Sarsaparilla!"
    (Festus' dialogue)
  10. Sunset Sarsaparilla headquarters terminal entries; Terminal 3
  11. Sunset Sarsaparilla headquarters terminal entries; What contest?
  12. Sunset Sarsaparilla headquarters terminal entries; RE: What contest?
  13. Sunset Sarsaparilla headquarters terminal entries; While the iron is hot
  14. Fallout 4 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."
  15. The Courier: "What's so special about these caps?"
    Malcolm Holmes: "There's an old wasteland legend that says somewhere out there is a fabulous treasure from before the war. Those caps with the blue star on them, the tale goes, are the key to that treasure. They're called Sunset Sarsaparilla Stars."
    The Courier: "What kind of treasure are we talking about?"
    Malcolm Holmes: "No one knows. Money? Weapons? Water? It is, or maybe was, something of value, and that's enough to get people motivated."
    (Malcolm Holmes' dialogue)
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