The USS Constitution is a three-masted, forty-four gunned frigate that was built at the Charlestown Navy Yard in North Boston in 1797, specifically designed to be larger and more heavily armed than standard frigates of the period. The ship participated in several battles against Barbary corsairs in the First Barbary War and against the Royal Navy in the War of 1812. During this war, a sailor saw an enemy cannon shot bounce off the oak hull, earning her the nickname "Old Ironsides."
The ship was finally dry-docked and restored in the 1920s, and remained the crown jewel of her eponymous maritime museum in the Boston Naval Shipyard until its destruction in 2077. Sometime between 2077 and 2287, NX-42 rocket engines were fitted to both sides of the ship, with wiring and electronic equipment installed throughout the ship, as well as a radar dish set up on the main deck. The ship then attempted to take off but ended up landing on top of the Weatherby Savings & Loan bank, just north of Boston.[Supplementary 1][Supplementary 2]
The ship can be boarded by either going to the second floor of the building the ship rests on, and then entering an access door in the hull of the ship, or by using the elevator to the ship's stern (back) to access the top-deck directly. The inside of the ship consists of three decks filled with supplies and items along with several turrets, protectrons, and some Mister Handies located throughout.
The USS Constitution is seen to have been outfitted with four NX-42 rocket engines that look similar to the Rocketdyne F-1 rocket engine without the nozzle extension, two at the stern and one on each side of the bow.
Below decks, the ship has a weapons workbench, an armor workbench, a chemistry station and a cooking station. On all decks except the top deck, all items are marked as owned, meaning one will be attacked upon taking them. This also counts for anything that is placed in a container. Only items that are stored in any of the workbenches or stations, or are on the top deck, can be taken without risk of consequences. The captain's quarters (Master locked) come with a full bed which can be used after completing Last Voyage of the U.S.S. Constitution.
- Broadsider - Reward for completing the quest Last Voyage of the U.S.S. Constitution.
- Lieutenant's hat - Reward for completing the quest Last Voyage of the U.S.S. Constitution.
- Captain's quarters key - On Ironsides, opens his cabin on the ship.
- Stealth Boy - In the Captain's Quarters.
- An issue of U.S. Covert Operations Manual (#2) - In the Captain's Quarters on a corner table.
- Captain Ironsides' hat - Worn by Ironsides.
- Even though the captain's quarters door is labeled green at all times, lockpicking it does in fact count as trespassing. However, the Bosun is not very observant, so it is possible to crouch while near him and remain hidden while picking the lock.
- The key to the captain's quarters is available from Ironsides on completion of the quest, if siding with him.
- Unlike other sentry bots, if deciding to attack and kill Ironsides, he will not erupt into a small nuclear explosion upon death. His remains contain loot, but he has to be selected to retrieve it.
- After the quest Last Voyage of the U.S.S. Constitution, if the player character sided with Ironsides, the ship crashes into a part of the nearby Baxter building, ironically another Weatherby institution called the Weatherby Investment Trust. The captain will proudly proclaim that they are a quarter-fathom closer to the Atlantic, and, according to his calculations, will take to the water in a "mere" century. The ship may be accessed at its new location by means of two elevators inside the building. The entrance is on the north side and is partly obscured by a pile of debris and a bus.
- When returning to the ship after it is relocated, the captain will reward the player character with his quarters since he cannot fit below deck.
- The ship can be boarded after launch with a timed jump. Entering the inner deck is not available while the ship is underway.
- The player character can ride the ship to the destination and survive by using a companion to activate the auxiliary generator in the last step of the Last Voyage of the U.S.S. Constitution. Start a companion to investigate the switch, then sprint to the dinghy elevator at the back of the ship (you must reach the dinghy before the companion activates the switch; try sending them to a spot down a couple of floors first and then set the command to activate the switch). The hatch into the USS Constitution remains accessible until the countdown ends and the ship begins moving. Talking to Ironsides while the boat is moving may cause a crash, so be sure to save before attempting. However, the player character will most likely die once the ship hits the building, as it appears a kill zone is activated. Your best bet to survive is to be standing at the very back of the ship near where the dinghy was before the takeoff.
- Power armor equipped with a jet pack can also be used to reach the deck of the Constitution more easily during the countdown and does not require the use of a companion to throw the final switch.
- After the Last Voyage of the U.S.S. Constitution, the ship seems to have lost the navigational system that was at the bow of the ship and the circuit breaker used to launch a broadside, as well as the terminal located at the stern.
- The Constitution's relocation during its associated quest makes it the only location in the game that can be discovered twice in a single playthrough, including the XP gain.
- Upon entering the Constitution during the Brotherhood of Steel quest Leading by Example, the crew will attack the Brotherhood squire accompanying the player character, but this will not result in hostility towards the player character.
- When at this location companions make comments, which are activated at two locations at the Weatherby Savings and Loan: at the corner of the street facing the ship, before the completion of the quest Last Voyage of the U.S.S. Constitution, and at the top of the Baxter building after activating the circuit breaker, after completion of the quest Last Voyage of the U.S.S. Constitution.
- A noticeable feature about the ship is the propulsion systems where the nozzle area looks identical to the Rocketdyne F-1 rocket engine, but without the nozzle extension added.
- Institute super mutants from Faneuil Hall may attack you from the ground when visiting the ship when the quest is complete.
- Companions make comments when at this location.
|Curie||Street corner||"The boat. It is on the building. That is the USS Constitution. Mon dieu."|
|Baxter building||"Up there? In the skyscraper? Is that a boat?"|
|Deacon||Street corner||"Oh, that? That's the USS Constitution. I hear it's parked up there for tax purposes."|
|Baxter building||"Huh? Wasn't the Constitution over there? My old age is catching up to me."|
|John Hancock||Street corner||""|
|Robert MacCready||Street corner||""|
|Nick Valentine||Street corner||""|
|Piper Wright||Street corner||""|
|Preston Garvey||Street corner||""|
- "This is the pride of our navy. The USS Constitution. As her commander, it is my privilege to enforce a certain measure of decorum amongst my crew." – Captain Ironsides
- "You visit this fine vessel in trying times. Becalmed these long years on her airy perch. Damn you Weatherby Savings & Loan! I spit at you!" – Captain Ironsides
The USS Constitution appears only in Fallout 4.
Behind the scenes
- The ship is based on the real world USS Constitution, also known as "Old Ironsides," a combat vessel berthed at Pier 1 of the former Charlestown Navy Yard at one end of Boston's Freedom Trail.
- In addition to serving as a maritime museum, the USS Constitution has the distinction of being the longest-serving combat vessel in the United States Navy, and the oldest floating commissioned warship in the world (the HMS Victory is older, but has sat in drydock since 1922). The USS Constitution is also the only currently serving warship in the American Navy to have sunk an enemy ship in battle.
- The vessel has a perfect battle record, having never been defeated or boarded. She recorded her most recent capture in 1853 against the American pirate slave ship H N Gambrill while patrolling off the African coast.
- Originally, the ship took three attempts to be launched, due to the weight of the ship sinking the ways into the ground. The USS Constitution as manned by Ironsides in-game also takes three launches in an attempt to get to the ocean — the one that put it on top of Weatherby Savings and Loans, the one the player character initiates, and the future third launch.
- "Bosun" is the pronunciation of the naval term "Boatswain."
- It is possible to get stuck on top of the captain's table. If wearing power armor, the player can exit their suit but cannot move off the table whilst still inside. [verified]
- Companions will recite their respective dialogues about the USS Constitution over and over, every few moments, while in the area. [verified]
- It is possible for several waves of scavengers using raider character models to spawn inside of the ship on one of the upper decks.[verified]
- Supplementary sources
- Fallout 4 Vault Dweller's Survival Guide p. 426: "This ancient maritime vessel was docked in the Boston Navy Yard and was primarily a tourist attraction. Before the war, it was populated by robots to give visitors a feel of what life was like back in the olden days. Due to an error in navigation, the ship is currently embedded in the remains of a harbor building, under constant threat of Scavenger and Raider attack. Access the interior of this vessel via a trapdoor in the hull that leads to the bow, through the building wreckage."
- Fallout 2d20 Rulebook p.286: "Originally built in 1797, this ship is a large example of the era’s frigates and played an extensive role in many of the U.S.A’s naval battles. Over time, it lost its edge in various naval engagements and was eventually dry-docked and turned into a museum piece. In the years since the Great War, various modifications have been made to this esteemed ship, including NX-42 rocket engines and various electronic upgrades which allow it to both soar through the air, as well as act as an aerial ship.Currently, however, it is in dire need of repairs, as it has crashed into the Weatherby Savings and Loan bank building, just to the east of Charlestown."