Fallout 3 Summary
Arriving in 2008 following an extended series hiatus, Fallout 3 is the first game in Bethesda Game Studios’ ongoing relaunch of the post-apocalyptic RPG franchise. Despite being the third major installment in the Fallout franchise, the title is the first in the series to use 3D graphics and a first-person perspective. Bethesda’s purchase of the rights to the franchise from Interplay lead to a renaissance for the series beginning with Fallout 3.
The successful Elder Scrolls serves as the template for Fallout 3, with a heavy emphasis on exploration and combat. Notably, Fallout is the first Bethesda RPG to feature first-person shooting. The title was met with near-universal positive reception on release and went on to win several ‘Game of the Year’ awards. Many consider Fallout 3 to be the best game in the entire franchise thanks to the freedom it affords players. Endlessly customizable and nearly infinitely replayable, Fallout 3 is a landmark of Western RPG design.
In addition to several expansions, Fallout 3 has two sequels in Fallout: New Vegas and Fallout 4. Since the improvements made to the franchise in Fallout 3, each subsequent game in the series has used similar mechanics. Recent estimates place the sales for the game around roughly 13 million copies.
Fallout 3 Premise
The Fallout series remains the most notable post-apocalyptic RPG franchise since the 1997 original. The first and second games in the series are noted for allowing players to creatively “break” the game and for incorporating dark humor and sarcasm alongside the dangerous, Mad Max-inspired setting. Fallout 3 continues all of these trademarks while also shifting the gameplay perspective. As the first title in the series to use 3D graphics and a first-person perspective, Bethesda worked hard to ensure Fallout 3 retained the characteristics that fans associated with the series.
The Fallout series takes place in an alternate-history version of the United States in which the idyllic 1950s never end. American prosperity propels society into the Atomic Age and brings with it incredible scientific advancements. Unfortunately, by the turn of the 21st Century this age of prosperity gives way to resource scarcity. As a result, diplomatic relations between the US and China reach all-time lows. This gives way to China’s invasion of the US, which then triggers worldwide nuclear apocalypse.
Players assume the role of a child born in the Vaults — nuclear-protected bunkers where humanity thrives during the post-war years. A series of events lead to the player character’s father (one of Vault 101’s scientists and doctors) leaving the Vault in search of permanent solutions to the world’s problems. By the time Fallout 3 begins in earnest, the player leaves Vault 101 to venture into the world for the first time in search of their father.
Fallout 3 Main Characters
The Fallout series has long been synonymous with clever writing and fully-realized characters, with Fallout 3 being no exception. In addition to the player-created protagonist, the game features a robust cast of allies and enemies. The main characters in Bethesda’s first series title include:
- The Lone Wanderer: The player-created character comes to be known as The Lone Wanderer due to their adventures across the wasteland. Originally born outside the Vaults in the Wasteland, the Wanderer’s father brought him into Vault 101 following the death of his mother.
- James: James is The Lone Wanderer’s father and a renowned scientist. His life’s work involves restarting a water purification system that will clean the Potomac River. He raises the Wanderer as a kind and loving father before leaving Vault 101 to better aid humanity’s rebuilding.
- Three Dog: Three Dog is the most famous DJ in the Wasteland and an invaluable aid to the player. His radio broadcasts regularly guide the Wanderer toward their next destination on the game’s critical path.
- Dr. Madison Li: Dr. Li is another scientist who worked with James on his water purification project. Once the Wanderer links up with Li, she agrees to help finish what his father started. She is critical in the game’s main plot toward bringing life back to post-apocalyptic Washington D.C.
- Fawkes: Fawkes is a friendly Super Mutant and a subject of the Forced Evolutionary Virus. Unlike other Super Mutants, Fawkes retains his humanity and is instrumental in the activation of James’ water purification plant.
- President John Henry Eden: President Eden is the leader of the Eastern US in the post-apocalypse. He also is responsible for assisting the Wanderer by helping them escape from the Enclave and Colonel Autumn.
- Dr. Stainslaus Braun: Dr. Braun is the evil Vault Overseer of Vault 112 — the site of the leading research to rebuild civilization after the war. He imprisons James in a virtual reality loop from which the Wander needs to free him.
- Colonel Augustus Autumn: Colonel Autumn is the leader of the Enclave — a paramilitary organization formed by the remnants of the US military following the war and apocalypse. He hopes to use James’ Project Purity to infect humanity with the Forced Evolutionary Virus.
Games in the Fallout Series
The Fallout series remains the most-popular and well-known post-apocalyptic RPG franchise, with releases across several hardware generations. Since its debut in 1997, the series has spawned numerous sequels and spin-offs. To date, the games in the Fallout series include:
- Fallout (1997)
- Fallout 2 (1998)
- Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel (2001)
- Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel (2004)
- Fallout 3 (2008)
- Fallout: New Vegas (2010)
- Fallout Shelter (2015)
- Fallout 4 (2015)
- Fallout Pinball (2016)
- Fallout 76 (2018)
- Fallout 5 (In Development)
Fallout 3 Cheats and Secrets
Fallout 3 features numerous cheats and secrets to uncover across its large, open-world map. Similar to other RPGs with both console and PC releases, there are console commands that players can enter to activate various cheats on the PC version. While these console commands are not applicable to the console versions of the game, there are still plenty of secrets to uncover as well as exploits to utilize.
Fallout 3 Command Console Cheats for PC
To enter one of the following cheats, players need to press the “~” key to open the Command Console. Once the Command Console is open, keying in any of the following commands will activate the cheats listed below. Any codes that use [#] require the player to input a desired numerical figure.
(infinite health, ammo, AP)
|tai||Toggle all NPC AI on / off.|
|tcai||Toggle NPC combat AI on / off.|
|tcl||Turn NoClip mode on / off.|
|tmm 1||Show all markers on map.|
|CompleteAllObjectives||Complete all objectives of a given quest.|
|unlock||Unlock selected door / terminal|
|tfc||Enable free-roaming camera|
|Kill||Kill selected target|
|KillAll||Kill all NPCs in immediate area.|
|advlevel||Increase character level by one.|
|player.setlevel [#]||Sets character level.|
|rewardXP [#]||Grants player specified number|
of experience points.
|rewardKarma [#]||Adds / Removes Karma.|
|player.addperk [Perk Code]||Grants selected perk to player.|
|player.remove perk [Perk Code]||Removed perk from player.|
|modpca [attribute] [#]||Adds # of points to designated S.P.E.C.I.A.L. skill.|
|player.forceAV [‘skill] [#]’||Set a skill to the desired value.|
|setgs fAVDCarryWeightsBase [#]||Set player’s max carry weight.|
“[first name] [last name]”
|Reset player character’s name.|
|showracemenu||Reset character’s appearance.|
|setPCyoung||Turn player character into a child.|
|Child at Heart||00003142|
|Grim Reaper Spirit||00099834|
|Here and Now||00031DAC|
|QUEST PERK CODES|
|Junior Survivor (A)||0002D3A2|
|Junior Survivor (B)||000331D4|
|Junior Survivor (C)||000331D5|
|Junior Survivor (D)||000331D6|
|Junior Survivor (E)||000331D7|
|Survival Expert (A)||0002D3A1|
|Survival Expert (B)||000331D8|
|Survival Expert (C)||000331DB|
|Survival Expert (D)||000331DA|
|Survival Expert (E)||000331DB|
|Survival Guru (A)||0002D3A0|
|Survival Guru (B)||000331DC|
|Survival Guru (C)||000331DD|
|Survival Guru (D)||000331DE|
|Survival Guru (E)||000331DF|
Fallout 3 Cheats and Secrets for PS3 & Xbox 360
If you’ve ever wanted more than one follower in the Wasteland, this is the exploit for you. First, hire Charon. Fire him as a follower before rescuing Fawkes from Vault 87. Hire Fawkes once outside. This results in the message, “Charon has been returned to the ninth circle.” Next, go back to Underworld where Charon was first hired. After hiring him, you will now have two followers. Note that this exploit may only work with Charon.
Nearly Infinite Carrying Capacity
This exploit is a nifty workaround for the limited carrying capacity in Fallout 3. As players scavenge the Wasteland, it’s all too common to get the notification that you’re Overencumbered. This trick helps avoid Overencumberance while also allowing you to have near limitless carrying capacity.
First, go to nearly any area and clear it off enemies. Find a 55-gallon drum (they’re nearly everywhere) and physically fill it with your inventory. Essentially, you’re creating a suitcase for yourself. Once the drum is full, place it in your inventory, and you will no longer be Overencumbered. Note that when using Fast-Travel, the drum will fall to the ground, spilling its contents. Thus, you’ll need to repeat the process until you can clear out your inventory properly.
Head to the Scrapyard area located just over the river northeast of Megaton. Once there, you will encounter Dogmeat who will automatically join you. Dogmeat attacks enemies automatically and cannot die permanently.
Easy Good Karma Exploits
As players encounter fellow Wastelanders, they will occasionally ask for water. Giving these NPCs Purified Water will result in some Good Karma, with the reward for each gift of water steadily increasing each time you complete it. Alternatively, players can visit Big Town. Each Super Mutant players slay for the denizens of Big Town nets massive Good Karma rewards, and players can respawn and repeat this process as needed.
Easy XP Boost
Before completing any non-combat action that will result in XP (lock-picking, terminal reading, persuasion, completing quests, etc.),set the in-game difficulty to Very Hard. This will significantly boost the rewards received and can immediately be set back to the desired difficulty. Just remember to reset the difficulty so that you don’t accidentally lose progress due to a failed encounter.
Fallout 3 Cheat FAQs
How do you open the Command Console in Fallout 3?
To open the Command Console while playing Fallout 3 on PC, simply press the tilde (~) key at any point during gameplay. This will bring up the console, at which point players can begin entering any desired cheats.
What is the level cap in Fallout 3?
The level cap is set to 99 and can be reached instantaneously on PC using Command Console cheats
How do you get infinite caps in Fallout 3?
There is an exploit in-game that allows for the accumulation of infinite caps. Players must visit a shopkeeper with substantial funds and valuable items in their inventory. After selling off any items the player doesn’t need, find an item you and the shopkeeper have and sell it to them. If you buy it back and repeat this process without ever leaving the transaction menu, you will see the item remain in your inventory and keep being sold for caps. Repeat this process until you have the desired number of caps in your inventory.