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-->''Life in the Vault is about to change...''

-->No one could stand in my way. I had a mission. I had a goal. I had a ''[[{{BFG}} really big gun.]]''
---> The [[PlayerCharacter Vault Dweller's]] memoirs, from the ''VideoGame/{{Fallout 2}}'' [[AllThereInTheManual manual]].

The first game in the ''VideoGame/{{Fallout}}'' series: the most straightforward and unarguably true to the original vision. Released in 1997.

Vault 13 is an okay place to live. There's plenty of food, water and friends, and the Overseer keeps everything nice and tidy. Not that you have much choice: the Overseer says that the world outside is a big pile of radioactive ash and bleached bones, with the only life being horrifying mutant creatures that could kill you in seconds. The wasteland is simply inhospitable. Good thing there's no reason to leave, right?

Think again. The water chip, the source of all the water in the Vault, has broken and there's no way to fix it. The only way to get another one is to seek out another Vault and take theirs. But wait, that means [[TheHero someone]] has to go into the wasteland! Who would do something that crazy?! The Overseer decided that the most fair way to find out, was to gather all the inhabitants of the Vault and have them draw straws. And guess who drew the shortest? Oh yes... [[OhCrap it was you]].

You leave the Vault for the first time. All you can see is a dark cave filled with rats, all of which look quite hungry, and a skeleton dressed in a Vault jumpsuit just outside the entrance. The door you just came out of won't respond to your password... ThisIsGonnaSuck.

----
!! This VideoGame contains the following tropes:
* AfterTheEnd
* AlasPoorVillain: [[spoiler: The Master if you get him to kill himself, getting a MyGodWhatHaveIDone reaction from him when he finds that all his work for nothing.]]
* [[AndThenJohnWasAZombie And Then the Vault Dweller Was a Super Mutant]]: Occurs as part of a NonStandardGameOver if you reveal the location of Vault 13 to the Lieutenant.
* AnyoneCanDie: See the KillemAll trope below.
* ApocalypticLog: Quite a few of them.
* {{Atompunk}}: Especially before the war.
* AssholeVictim: Decker may be an evil crime boss, but the people he wants you to remove aren't angels themselves. They include Darren Hightower, the leader of the Water Merchants who use their water supply as an economic weapon, and Jaina, a member of the [[ReligionOfEvil Unity]].
* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler: In the end you are banished from the home you fought so hard to save because you have become "too different".]]
** [[spoiler: The more time you take to defeat the super mutants, the more towns they invade and destroy. It's possible to defeat them all, but end up with Adytum (maybe) and Vault 13 as the only surviving places.]]
* BizarreAlienBiology: Centaurs and floaters look like ''nothing'' nature could've created (which is about right, since the former are failed FEV experiments, and the latter are the result of the US government's experiments on exposing the FEV virus to flatworms.)
* BodyHorror: [[spoiler: The Master, who's only barely recognizable as human (or even humanoid) and talks in three different voices. The floor he's on isn't much better, covered from floor to ceiling in biomass.]]
* BonusDungeon: The Glow. While the player does need to go there to join the Brotherhood of Steel, they only need to visit the first floor, while there's still multiple floors full of loot, robots and radiation to deal with below [[spoiler: (as well as being able to learn the origins of the FEV virus.)]]
* BrandX: The gun magazines appear to be a BrandX version of ''Guns & Ammo''.
* ButThouMust: "The chip, please." Becomes a CrowningMomentOfFunny if you play a [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IuBjeLiWhek below 4 intelligence character.]]
* [[ChekhovsGunman Chekhov's Town]]: Shady Sands, the humble FirstTown with a few minor sidequests, goes on to become the New California Republic, a major faction in both ''2'' and ''[[VideoGame/FalloutNewVegas New Vegas]]''.
* CombatDiplomacyStealth: Generally speaking there are three ways to accomplish anything. You can just use plain violence, you can use diplomacy, or you could steal something. This includes the final boss: you could convince him he's wrong and that he needs to self-destruct, you could just shoot him, or you could sneak into the basement and set off his self-destruct nuke.
* CoolPet: Dogmeat.
* CrystalDragonJesus:
** The Unity has a gothic style cathedral.
** One of Followers of Apocalypse's symbols is a Celtic Cross.
* DownerEnding: If you side with the BigBad or give in to TheDragon, you get treated to one of these. The same thing happens if 500 days(or 400 if you give away Vault 13's location) pass. It is pure horror. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PfyqlMBeQFU See for yourself.]] The player character is dipped in FEV if he sided with the antagonists, Vault 13 is invaded, and everyone inside is slaughtered, including what looks like the Overseer as he makes a last stand.
* FatBastard: Gizmo.
* FiringOneHanded: There's a perk to allowed you to use one-handed weapons better with an accuracy penalty to two-handed ones.
* FiveBadBand
** BigBad: The Master
** TheDragon: Lieutenant
** EvilGenius: Morpheus
** TheBrute: Harry
** DarkChick: Jain
* FiveManBand
** TheHero: The Vault Dweller
** TheLancer: Ian
** TheSmartGuy: Katja
** TheBigGuy: Tycho
** TeamPet: Dogmeat
* FromNobodyToNightmare: [[spoiler:The Master was once just another Vault resident.]] Also, [[PlayerCharacter the Vault Dweller]], especially if you take the more evil routes.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: Have you paid attention to the lyrics of the song ''Maybe'' heard in the intro? Especially to the verse ''Maybe you'll think of me when you are all alone/Maybe the one who is waiting for you/Will prove untrue, then what will you do?''?. Cue the memorable scene of [[spoiler: the Vault Dweller wandering towards an uncertain future, after being banished from the Vault 13 by the Overseer]].
* GallowsHumor: "This is Ed. Ed's dead."
* {{Gorn}}: Some of the deaths can get pretty messy, usually when enemies are killed via critical hit (or if you have the Bloody Mess trait, which causes everyone around you to die the most violent deaths possible.)
* GrayAndGreyMorality: As with the rest of the series. Interestingly enough, it was going to be ''more'' gray in the sense of Junktown having a BittersweetEnding no matter who you sided with.
* GunTwirling: Your character will do this when you holster certain guns.
* HulkSpeak: Super mutants, as well as the player character if s/he has a low intelligence score.
* IfYoureSoEvilEatThisKitten: If you talk to the raider leader, he orders you to execute two girls. Saying "NO!" makes the raiders turn against you; Saying "Okay!" results in the girls begging you not to, before cutting to a sticky spot on the floor, and the raiders commenting that your style is "Messy, but effective." You lose a few Karma points and befriend the raiders.
* InkSuitActor: Some alking heads resembles their voice actors. The most notable example is [[RichardDeanAnderson Killian Darkwater]] who basically is MacGyver without the mulllet. Another example is Laura, who has long, blonde hair, like KathSoucie.
* KillEmAll: Including being able to do a pacifist run, it's possible to do a sort genocide run where you kill every living thing in the game, including the usually-unkillable Overseer.
* KnightTemplar: The Brotherhood of Steel.
* LifeWillKillYou: If Gizmo takes over Junktown, he dies by choking on an Iguana Stick in the ending.
* LinearWarriorsQuadraticWizards: Small Guns, Melee Weapons, and Unarmed Combat could be seen as analogues for a "Warrior", because they're common and will carry you through the game. Big Guns and Energy Weapons, on the other hand, are much less common yet they are superior to the other weapons by the endgame (Big Guns can deal high damage to multiple targets, and Energy Weapons have the highest damage per shot).
* LordBritishPostulate: Every single character in the game, no matter how important, is killable...except for the Overseer, at least under normal circumstances. Throughout the game, he's sitting in a raised pod (much like the Master) that protects him, and if you open fire on him, then he whips out a pair of special miniguns and {{One Hit Kill}}s you. However, [[spoiler: at the end of the game, the Overseer finally steps out of his pod to speak with you, and if you're quick enough, you can enter battle mode just before the ending FMV plays and messily execute him in one shot (though this also happens automatically if you have low karma or the Bloody Mess trait.)]]
* ManualLeaderAIParty: The recruitable party members allow you to customise how close or far they stay from you, how often to use drugs to heal themselves, and how to use their weapons.
** ArtificialStupidity: Unfortunately, there's no way to nudge them out of the way until 2, meaning they can box you into a corner in more crowded areas and refuse to budge, necessitating a reload if you don't want to shoot your way out.
* MegatonPunch: Combining the power fist (or, indeed a high enough unarmed skill) with the Bloody Mess trait results in the player being able to literally punch massive holes in enemies.
* ModularEpilogue: The ending is a series of short epilogues detailing the future of the different settlements the player visited, with multiple endings highlighting the player's actions and their moral implications.
* PlotCoupon: The Water Chip. It is not a MacGuffin since the item itself has relevance[[note]]if you don't find it within the time limit, Vault 13 will run out of clean water and your people will die of dehydration[[/note]], and you need to "cash it in" in order to move the plot into the second phase.
* RocksFallEveryoneDies: Pissing off the Overseer will result in him pulling out a pair of plasma gatlings from his chair and one-shotting you.
** There's also a more unintentional example. If the Regulators turn on Jon Zimmerman, his bodyguard will shoot him with a special scripted attack that deals 250 damage. It's possible to [[TakingTheBullet Take The Bullet]] by accident and keel over dead right then and there.
* SequenceBreaking: Since the player can go pretty much everywhere from the very start of the game (although they only have the coordinates of one of them) it's entirely possible, with high enough skill, luck or repeated SaveScumming, to complete the second mission's objectives way before having finished the first one.
* ShoutOut: A trademark of the series.
** The [[DownerEnding FEV ending]] (i.e. the bad one) ends with the shot of the [[Film/{{Batman}} hand stretched from the vat of sickly green goo]].
** The Junktown was visited by [[MadMax a stranger with a shotgun, a dog, and one-sleeved leather jacket]].
** One of the possible special encounters is an "[[http://fallout.wikia.com/wiki/Unusual_Call_Box Unusual Call Box]]". More precisely, it is [[Series/DoctorWho a blue, 1960s style British police call box]].
** If you choose to fight the arduous boss battle against Lou Tenant (voiced by TonyJay) instead of just self-destructing Mariposa, [[ReBoot he will have a pair of robot henchmen fighting alongside him]].
* SnipeHunt: Trying to join the Brotherhood of Steel will have them send you on a mission to retrieve something from the Glow, a highly irradiated death zone. Upon accepting the mission, one of the door guards mentions that they usually just give the mission out to get rid of people wandering in and wanting to join. If you ''do'' complete the mission, though, they make you an initiate anyway.
* TalkingTheMonsterToDeath: An intelligent enough character that has found the right piece of evidence can do this to the BigBad.
* TimedMission: You have 150 in-game days to find the water chip. This can be postponed 100 days if you tell a group of water merchants were Vault 13 is. Next [[spoiler:you get 500 in-game days to stop the Master's Army from invading Vault 13. If you asked for help from the water merchants you only got 400 days]]. This leaves the player with relatively little time to explore a pretty interesting world, something Black Isle probably realized, because the first patch removed the second limit, allowing you to TakeYourTime. Some of the cities still end up being destroyed if you take too much time though.
* ThirteenIsUnlucky: Vault 13 may seem a case at first, since its spare water chip shipment got misplaced. However, as you progress you'll see Vaults whose fates were much worse.
* ThisCannotBe: [[spoiler: The Master will at first claim you forged the evidence that the virus turns everything sterile.]]
* TheUnintelligible: Playing with a low enough intelligence score results in a character so stupid that they can't even form coherent sentences. Unfortunately, this also makes it hard to get into a lot of sidequests or even barter, because most NPCs are just too annoyed by you.
* UtopiaJustifiesTheMeans: [[spoiler:The Master wants to turn every human into Super Mutants as he believes that it is the only way to unify the wasteland]].
* WelcomeToCorneria: Pretty standard for its time and genre. But subtly lampshaded close to the end when you get to the [[{{SupervillainLair}} Cathedral]]. When you speak to one of the Children inside, a possible conversation starter is "You know, every time I talk to someone, people keep repeating everything they say over and over again."
* WellIntentionedExtremist: The Master. [[spoiler:He wants to replace humanity with what he genuinely views as being the best step forward. He reveals that he doesn't want to kill humanity so much as phase them out, and is absolutely heartbroken at everything he has done if you reveal how pointless it has been, and he is genuinely horrified and suicidal over all that he has done in the name of progress.]]
* WhamEpisode: The conversation with ZAX in the Glow, as well as reading the holodisks stored there.