Fallout, the Post-Apocalyptic Video Game Series Borrows from Religious Stories

BagoGames is licensed under CC BY SA 2.0
BagoGames is licensed under CC BY SA 2.0
The popular video game series Fallout takes inspiration from religious texts and stories.

Fallout is a series of video games set in a post-apocalyptic 22nd and 23rd century.  The various editions of the role-playing series are filled with shooting, explosions, and gore, like you would expect from such a video game. 

But it is also filled with religious references, both from real life and fictional denominations. 

In the lore of Fallout, the Great War has resulted in an apocalypse.  Several religious groups survive however, such as the Christians (like the Mormon Church), Hindus, Buddhists, and Sikhs

[WARNING: Explicit Language]

But new post-war religions also emerge:  Children of the Cathedral (near Los Angeles), Children of the Atom (who view nuclear weapons as a means of liberation), the Followers of the Apocalypse, and the Brotherhood of Steel.

Tribal religions also thrive, worshiping those things that others have forgotten:  their ancestors, nature, and even Caesar as the Son of Mars.

In addition to the various religious groups that the characters in Fallout populate, there are various Biblical references throughout the game play.

Some are blatant. For example, there is a verse from Revelation 21:6, which includes the familiar, “I am Alpha and Omega.” The names of all the achievements or trophies (depending on your gaming platform) are taken from the Book of Psalms. There is a casino named Gomorrah, which is a clear reference to the Book of Genesis.  Our Lady of Guadalupe is visible on the handle of a gun, and St. Monica, mother of St. Augustine, is mentioned as well.

Other allusions are more subtle. For example, Daniel Littlehorn, a character who causes much mayhem, gets his name from a verse from the Book of Daniel 7:8, which is a reference to the anti-Christ:

And there was another horn, a little horn, coming up among them,
before whom three of the first horns were plucked out by the roots…”

Further, Littlehorn has four secretaries, paralleling the four horsemen of the apocalypse. 

There is an add-on to Fallout: New Vegas called “Honest Hearts,” which is a reference to a quote from Brigham Young (an early leader of the Mormon Church):  “Honest hearts produce honest actions.”

One can even connect back to the 1988 video game Wasteland, which is considered a forerunner of the Fallout series.  A wasteland is mentioned in Micah 7:13.

As popular as the Fallout series is, and as well-researched and planned as it seems to be, there must be many, many more references, allusions and religious symbolism to find.

Play and find out.


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