|For information on the environment of Fallout, see Fallout world.|
The world map is the way of navigating the game world in the Fallout series.
Fallout, Fallout 2, Fallout Tactics
In Fallout, Fallout 2 and Fallout Tactics, the world map is a bird's eye view map of the landscape of the games, divided into a matrix of square-shaped, equally sized sectors. The world map's primary function is to enable navigation for the player character's travels. When they leave a location with intent to travel to another one (typically located far away, due to the Fallout world's extremely low population density), they are presented with the world map. In Fallout there is a total of 12 locations. In Fallout 2 there is a total of 21 locations. In Fallout Tactics there is a total of 26 locations and 29 random encounters.
When stationary, the player character's location is marked by an icon in an inverse pyramid, clicking on which takes them to the location they are currently at, which does not have to be a specially designated location - the player character can make stops anywhere on the map to perform actions such as relieving themselves of unnecessary equipment, changing or reloading the weapons held, or administering drugs to themself or one of their companions.
To move the player character across the map, they have to click at any area they not currently at. In Fallout and Fallout 2, the player character's location is marked by a red cross icon, and the path is traced by line strokes (the stroke length hints at player character's speed - the longer they are, the more time it takes them to travel through that particular sector). In Fallout Tactics, the player character's location is marked by radiation trefoil, and no tracing is available.
Travel speed across the world map is determined by the sectors it's comprised of. "Desert" and "Ruins" sectors are the fastest to travel across. "Mountains" are the slowest, and "ocean" sectors are impossible to travel across. The player character's speed may be increased by possessing a special perk, or driving a vehicle (only in Fallout 2).
About every 24 hours of travel, the game "rolls" a check for random encounters. If the roll is successful, the player character gets forced to leave the world map screen to face the situation. In Fallout 2, the player character may be given a description of the encounter and the opportunity to avoid it, the probability of which is determined by their Outdoorsman skill. A common feature on the world map screen are the indicators for current time, date, and year, as well as a list of special locations already visited, clicking on which automatically changes the player character's course to that location.
In the beginning of each game, the world map starts completely black except for the starting sector. As the player character travels, the sectors visited appear bright, while the sectors in the immediate vicinity of the ones visited appear dark. Traveling across a "Beach" sector reveals all "Ocean" sectors to the left of it. There is no special prize or bonus for exploring all sectors.
Special locations, such as towns, are marked by green circles of various size. In Fallout 2, special encounters are also marked with small green circles. If the Highwayman runs out of fuel, it will have to be abandoned, and the car's location will also be marked with a small green circle.
In Fallout 3 the world map is first accessible when receiving the Pip-Boy 3000 on the Lone Wanderer's 10th birthday. The world map shows the locations of the Capital Wasteland, Adams Air Force Base, Point Lookout, Anchorage and The Pitt. Not all locations must be visited in person to be shown on the map, as they can be mentioned by non-player characters, however, even though the locations is marked on the map, it cannot be fast traveled to.
With the Explorer perk (available at level 20), all locations on the map are revealed, but cannot be fast-traveled to before visitation. The world map is 4.1 x 4.1 miles or 17 square miles, with a total of 225 locations.
Fallout: New Vegas
The Fallout: New Vegas world map is a bird's eye view of the landscape surrounding New Vegas. It is accessible through the Pip-Boy 3000 "Data" tab. Locations are shown on this map and fast travel is used on this map to go immediately to locations that the player has already visited. The map can also show areas in the Sierra Madre, Zion Canyon, Big MT and the Divide.
When a quest is selected to become the active quest in the Pip-Boy "Quests" tab, relevant places and people are marked on the world map with solid tabs, and a dotted line linking the Courier's current location to that marker.
The player character can set a manual marker themselves anywhere on the map using the X button; this marker appears as an unfilled tab, also linked to their location by a dotted line. If the player character has previously marked a location they will be prompted to either leave the old marker, replace it with the new location or remove the marker entirely. The player can only set one manual marker at any one time. These markers appear on the HUD compass, for the purposes of navigation. The map is 4.3 x 4.3 miles or 19 square miles.
Uncovering the map
In Fallout: New Vegas, the Courier begins their quest in the town of Goodsprings, which will appear on the map as the only location at the beginning of the game. As they travel and find new locations, they will appear on the map as filled squares, which can be fast-traveled to. When characters mention locations in conversation these locations appear on the map, though when they have not been visited by the player character they are represented by unfilled squares, which cannot be fast-traveled to.
Original pre-War roads and railways are all marked on the map from the beginning, and major geographical features such as mountains are also shown. The Explorer perk (available at level 20) will reveal all marked locations on the map, but cannot be fast-traveled to before visitation. There are 737 total named locations in Fallout: New Vegas and accompanying add-ons. In the base game there are 544 named locations, including 190 marked, 253 unmarked, 2 Wild Wasteland, 67 mentioned only, and 32 cut/unused. With the add-ons, an additional 193 named locations are added, including 153 marked and 40 mentioned only.
The Fallout 4 world map is a bird's eye view map of the Commonwealth. Similar to previous games, it also shows the quest targets, where the player character has to visit in order to advance through the quest. However, this time the markers are made differently, to show which quest can be advanced. The map is 5.4 x 5.4 miles or 30 square miles, with a total of 396 locations.
Unlike previous games, the map of Appalachia featured in Fallout 76 is an atlas-style map with graphics of different major locations on it. The map is around four times larger than the map of Fallout 4, roughly 120 square miles. In certain other parts of the game, an alternate topological map of Appalachia is used instead, such as while selecting the target location of a nuclear missile, using a map purchased from the U-Mine-It! vending machine, or viewing locations on the wall maps in train stations.