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    Pre-E3 2015 Speculation 
Harold will appear in the game
Again. Only this time he'll be a giant forest that asks the PC to clear infected plants like a doctor or hunt animals causing problems.
  • He didn't show up in New Vegas for obvious reasons. If he shows up in this game, it'll most likely be as DLC.
  • Jossed, Harold is completely absent from the main game.

The game will subvert the usual setting tropes.
For one thing, it won't be a nuclear desert, but will be a large forest due to the events of the third game.
  • It's looking like a mix, considering the trailer.
  • Um... zigzagged? The game takes place around the Boston region of New England, which was a coastal area that didn't get nuked anywhere near as seriously as the other regions, so while there are a lot of destroyed, polluted regions, it's considerably more lush than the Capital Wasteland or the Mojave. That said, the Black Rain (toxic-laced storms thrown up by the initial bombing) wrecked the vegetation pretty heavily.

Time Travel is involved.
Law of Conservation of Detail , basically. The trailer keeps flashing from 2077 to whatever year it takes place in. Considering it's a sequel to a big franchise, it's abnormal to give a quick rundown of what happened in the past in the trailer, as it's usually assumed you know. So, time travel in a trailer? Makes more sense as an important detail.
  • Given that the Commonwealth is a technological powerhouse, this somehow strangely not implausible.
  • Time travel did appear in Fallout 2, where during a random encounter the player went back in time to sabotage the water purifier, causing the events of Fallout 1.
    • That was a special encounter, not a random encounter. Specials were generally non-canon: stuff like finding a crashed Star Trek shuttle or the TARDIS. What's more likely is the old casting leaks that people initially balked at — they mentioned that the main character emerges into the wasteland from cryogenic suspension. Perhaps that's what Vault 111's experiment was?
  • Jossed: Vault 111 is another Cryogenic Suspension Vault. The Sole Survivor wakes up 200 years later, but everyone else was released — and massacred — over 60 years before they wake up at the start of the game.

Memory Den, seen in the trailer, is inspired by The Last Book in the Universe.
Another post-apocalyptic work, and in it, people's primary form of entertainment is shooting up the entertainment. The name "Memory Den", combined with the area, invokes that idea to me, of people taking refuge in artificial memories to escape the horrible real world.
  • Confirmed, the memory den is both implicity and explicity displayed as a den of vice.

Title the PC will gain.
You know, stuff like "the Vault Dweller", "the Chosen One", "the Lone Wanderer", "the Courier".
  • The Midnight Rider
  • The Chosen Vault Wanderer
  • The Dog Petter
  • The Time Traveler (Assuming the leaked casting documents were real.)
  • Howard (or otherwise chosen Hello, [Insert Name Here])
    • Canonically, the male SS is Nate, the female SS is Nora.
  • The Survivor
    • The Fallout Wiki has seized upon "Sole Survivor", a term used during Bethesda's E3 presentation.
    • Partially Confirmed. "The Sole Survivor" is the canonical title of the protagonist, the only other title so far being "General" if you join the Minutemen.

The Brotherhood has gone to war with the Institute.
While we don't know much about the Institute, we know that they're techies who run the Commonwealth. And it looks like the Brotherhood has appropriated Enclave tech already. Seems like something they'd do, especially if the Institute turns out to be evil.
  • This is the war the BoS is unlikely to win, even with Liberty Prime by they side, since The Commonwealth so advance that they are capable of making Androids- robots that can eat, sleep, piss, breathe and probably have sex.
    • Liberty Prime was obliterated by the Enclave's Kill Sat. The BoS does NOT have it anymore, and don't have the schematics to recreate it.
    • Don't count the Brotherhood out just yet. After all, they do have a large manpower pool to draw from in the Capital Wasteland—individuals who are likely highly-motivated, well-trained, and well-equipped—especially if we assume a "Good" ending to Broken Steel, where they also have command of huge resources of fresh water. Presuming the airships we see in the first trailer also belong to the Brotherhood, that means they've begun manufacturing new tech, which in turn means they've both cast off some of the restrictions of their dogma and have built up considerable industrial infrastructure. That's more than enough logistics to fight a war.
    • Going by the trailer, the Brotherhood is happily putting to use the massive amounts of technology that you've helped them acquire during Broken Steel, now having Vertibirds and the like. Furthermore, they have The Lone Wanderer. Just a theory, but maybe Elder Lyons, being, well, elderly, died, and Sarah decided not to take over, preferring to continue leading her squad. The Lone Wanderer, the Last, Best Hope For Humanity, the Capital Wasteland's personal Jesus Christ, the savior of The Pitt, the exterminator of the Super Mutant menace, the hero to all and savoir of all, is now in charge. They took back The Pitt, allowing Ashur to run it as governor, and made The Pitt a state in their own new nation, led from The Citadel. This could eventually lead to a war with the NCR in several games, too. The Lone Wanderer and the Brotherhood of Steel have four states: DC, The Pitt, Point Lookout and the area around the former Enclave airbase. After building their nation, they remembered Harkness and began a war with The Institute. However, before someone worries I'm theorizing the LW is a dictator, far from it. It's a George Washington situation. The Lone Wanderer is only in charge because EVERYBODY wants them in charge. The Wanderer will be seen as almost a god by the Brotherhood, with their troops saying things like "May the Wanderer watch over us", much like America's own Founding Fathers worship. They've rebuild DC into much of its old glory, and thanks to Mothership Zeta, they've been able to take some satellites, and Three Dog is now available to the quad-state area, as well as in Boston. After all, who doesn't want Three Dog to return?
    • Could it be that it is the Midwestern brotherhood that is occupying Boston, they would be at odds with the brotherhood from Fallout 3, that means outcasts from the DC brotherhood might show up. I say this because the Midwestern brotherhood was in Fallout: Tactics and had airships, and since they have the old brotherhood ideals of preserving technology they would likely attack the institute for its tech.
      • What? The Offshoot in Fallout Tactics was exiled for arguing against the xenophobic-isolationist dogma of the mainstream brotherhood (admittedly, one of their reasons was the fact the brotherhood, even THEN, was in danger of dieing out from attrition). It's pretty likely that they'd get on significantly better with the DC chapter then the others, once they got past the whole working out who's who stage.
  • Confirmed

We will play as an Android
Admit it, folks. That would make one helluva plot twist. Oh, also a nice way to explain our Badassery.
  • The option to create and/or turn into a Ghoul would be another.
  • Jossed, Synth technology was invented after the Great War and the Sole Survivor was alive before the War.
    • Although, in the Far Harbor DLC, it is played with. When DiMA asks if you are a synth, his arguments for it, in combination with the small amount of time the player can remember (thanks to when the game starts), makes it impossible to prove you're not a Synth.
The Player Character will be an Ascended Fanboy of/the Lone Wanderer
  • Because the last scene from the trailer feel a lot like the setup to this image for me and the Lone Wanderer is (if i'm not mistaken,) the only Fallout protagonist represented with a dog.
  • Dogmeat was a companion in Fallout 1 (the Vault Dweller) and 2 (the Chosen One), as well.
    • But the dog wasn't in promotional art. I think.
  • Jossed: The player character, aka the Sole Survivor, is a cryogenically frozen ex-military operative from over 200 years ago. They have no idea who the Lone Wanderer is.

The protagonist is The Vault Dweller
Don't say that is not obvious.
  • Jossed: While the player character is from a vault, they're not the fellow from the first game.

The Lone Wanderer will appear physically
As a playable character in a 2277 flashback or a NPC, their face need to be hidden of course, Power Armor should do the trick. Their appearance will be similar to the Vault Dweller in Fallout: BOS.
  • Jossed for the vanilla game, but still possibly up for DLC.
  • Jossed in the {DLC}s as well - However, a few characters from Fallout 3 do appear, and several more are mentioned.

A faction of the Abolitionists will come back.
Much like their brothers in DC, they are all trying to protect and recover political relics from Boston this time around.
  • Jossed: There is the railroad, but they have no interest in political relics.

Followers from Fallout 3 may return.
Depending on how long after that game this one takes place, of course. It would be cool to see someone like Star Paladin Cross or Fawkes to show up. Maybe not as followers again, but at least as quest givers.
  • Zigzagged; no canonical Fallout 3 characters show up in the core game (which still leaves DLC, of course), but one potential follower, MacCready, is an all-grown-up take on the obnoxious "Mayor" Of Little Lamplight from the Capital Wasteland.

The male version of the Player Character will be voiced by Troy Baker.
The voice saying "Let's go, pal" at the end of the trailer sounds like Troy Baker.
  • Jossed, he's voiced by Brian Delaney.

The family in the house in the trailer are alive and well.
They made it to a vault in time before the end of the world happened.
  • Alternatively, the family is in the game, but you can see their corpse and loot their bodies and house for items.
  • Since the family shown in the house was wearing the same clothes as the family that was locked out of the Vault, that shockwave was likely the last thing all three of them ever saw. If anything, I bet there will be 3 charred skeletons right outside the door.
    • Jossed somewhat The protagonist is either the husband or the wife, depending on player choice (And obviously alive). The spouse is very much dead. And the son is basically the game's Big Bad.

A character from at least one past Fallout game will make a return.
  • Doctor Li left the Capital Wasteland and headed to the Commonwealth during Broken Steel. If anything, we'll see her.
    • If the Brotherhood of Steel is moving into New England, it's likely we'll see the return of Sarah Lyons (as the Brotherhood's leader), as well.
  • Arcade Gannon might make an appearance as well, assuming he's forced to flee after the events of New Vegas due to his connections to the Enclave.
    • Confirmed. Mayor MacCready is a companion, Arthur Maxson is the Brotherhood's new Elder (Sarah Lyons apparently died in battle), Doctor Li has joined the Institute, the Mechanist is the main antagonist of the Automatron DLC, and Sierra Petrovita from Girdershade returns in the Nuka World DLC.

Vault 68 and 69 will be among the others in the area.
Both vaults are only mentioned in the Fallout Bible, and concept art was created for Fallout: Van Buren. They probably would've been featured in that game had it not been cancelled. As such, the official locations are not confirmed to be in Arizona/New Mexico/Colorado where the game would've taken place. I for one, am very curious to see the outcome of 1 woman living with 999 men, and 1 man living with 999 women.
  • Jossed. The Boston area only has five vaults, and none of them are 68 or 69.

There will be several references to the works of H.P. Lovecraft, with at least one quest being a Whole-Plot Reference
Between the previous references done with the Dunwich Building, and it's associated quest from point lookout, it's clear that the Fallout team at Bethesda has quite a bit of love for the Cthulhu Mythos. Combine that with the setting of Massachusetts being smack dab in the middle of Lovecraft Country, it's safe to say we're certain to get a few references. I would even wager a DLC taking us to Providence, Rhode Island.
  • Confirmed: There's an area in the game called the Pickman gallery, obviously referencing Pickman's Model. Except instead of painting ghouls like Richard Upton Pickman did in his story (after all, they are in abundance in the Commonwealth- wouldn't be much of a work of art), this Pickman actively slaughters raiders, butchers them, and then either paints them or puts their bodies on display in his gallery.

Dogmeat will play a bigger role than just a companion
With the amount of focus in the trailer, the interaction with this version of Dogmeat will be a core part of the gameplay.
  • Epileptic Trees here, but what if Dogmeat IS the player character, and the reason we've been waiting so long for an announcement is because Bethesda have been developing a whole new gameplay interface to recreate the perspective of a dog?
    • Jossed, you play as a human as usual.

The player will have a home base (or several) in which they can assemble an arsenal
The unfinished suit of Power Armor in the garage is indicative of a gameplay mechanic wherein the player can scavenge parts and use them in the construction of arms and armor.
  • Confirmed.

My theory on the main quest
After leaving your vault, you are entangled in a war for control of the boston area between three factions. The Brotherhood of Steel, who have become ruthless in their attempts to the destroy the local institute, which is the 2nd faction. The Institute is a technologically advanced government that controls this area and has been slowly expanding into brotherhood territory. The 3rd faction is a militia composed of Towns and Settlements made of canadian survivors called "The Northern Front" which is fleeing the coming long winter(This "Long Winter" would play a key role in the 5th installment). The Northern Front make up for their technical inferiority with powerful mutant warbeasts. Fight for a chosen faction and decide the fate of vault 111 and the entire Boston area.
  • Jossed, although a few of these ideas (like the Brotherhood being more ruthless, and one of the factions being a militia) are confirmed.

Vault 111 is the last sealed vault
  • Has a decent probability, what with the east coast location. Probably one of the last places to be hit, so one of the last places to seal up.
    • I meant the last still sealed.
  • Jossed: Vault 111 was broken into and its population massacred some 60 years before the game started.

The USS Constitution will fly at some point.
The pair of machinery attached to the back of the ship appears to be some kind rocket thruster. The reason an 3-century old wooden ship have rocket engines is because ate some point before the game, the ship is converted into a blimp by fitting in gas bags in side the hull. The engines is definitely used to move around in the air. At some point of the game you can take a quest to fix Constitution's engines, and get the Old Ironside flying again.
  • Confirmed, after you've done the quests, the Constitution does fly away and then crashes in a building a few meters away.

A baseball-themed faction will appear in the game.
In the trailer, not only the Fenway Park is still intact, but the survivors also have built a city appropriately named "Diamond City" inside it. The people living in Diamond city are descendants of Red Sox fans trapped in the stadium when the bomb fall in the middle of a game. After decades passes, the inhabitant of Diamond City mistakes their ancestor's obsession with baseball as a religion, and starts worshiping baseball players and wearing baseball memorabilias. In the similar vein of the Kings from Fallout: New Vegas.
  • As an addendum, the player will be able to learn techniques from these guys, including the Secret Art of the Grand Slam, wherein one takes a baseball bat, grenades, and starts hitting some explosive home runs at the enemy.
  • If they view the Red Sox fandom as a religion, would they then view the New York Yankees as the devil?
  • Zigzagged. Up to this point, the only true baseball-themed character is a merchant in Diamond City who sells baseball paraphernalia and thinks baseball was a sort of Gladiator Games.
    • The residents do however 'worship' (or at least have great reverence for) The Wall which has never let a single raider or mutant into the city

Vault 111's residents were cryogenically frozen after the bombs fell
So far in the series each of the vaults has had a gimmick or underlying experiment going on behind the scenes. My theory is that given the trailers focus on the pre war world, is that we are actually playing as a protagonist who was a part of the old world and has only recently awoken to the new one. Possibly as a volunteer by the vault to examine the current state of the world to see if it is ready to be re inhabited.
  • Confirmed.

The main story of the game will have a central theme of "Liberty", and the player will have to decide what brand the New England Wasteland will enjoy.
It goes without saying that Boston—indeed, all of New England—has a very important place in the history of the United States. And being set in one of the wellsprings of the American Revolution, it seems likely that the game will delve into the fundamental values and issues of the Revolution, namely natural rights, republicanism, imperialism, and liberty. This will be reflected in the structure of the main quest, and the natures of the various factions in the game. For the purposes of this WMG, we will assume the main political conflict will be between the Institute and the Brotherhood of Steel, with any number of smaller factions in between.

The Institute, from what little we know, enslaves androids and hoards tremendous amounts of technology for itself. While this may not seem like the nicest society at first glance, the fact that the Institute is able to manage all of this likely means they are also stable and secure—two great rarities in the anarchy of post-apocalyptic America. They've also apparently managed to maintain this society for some time, meaning they can be seen as the "rightful" owners of the land; they are the ones living there, therefore the land is theirs. This simultaneously parallels the American slave institution and delves into the ideas of natural rights and self-determinism. Perhaps the Institute even has a republican form of government, allowing for further exploration of these themes. Should the player decide to side with the Institute, they may have a hand in upholding its independence, and ensuring its people still have the liberty to live peacefully—and perhaps enfranchise the androids while they're at it.

Now, assuming the Brotherhood of Steel is encroaching on the territory surrounding Boston, that sets up the imperialist themes quite handily. It begs the questions of whether the Brotherhood should be viewed as liberators and patriots, vying to topple the tyranny of the Institute, or as conquerors out for wealth and technology, who will rule their new territory from their faraway Citadel and give no say to the people actually living in the area. Again, the player could perhaps have an influence on exactly how this all turns out, and maybe even influence the color of the Brotherhood's actions toward one end or the other, and to determine exactly what sort of liberty they will bring to the people.

Caught between these two big players are, of course, the smaller settlements and communities of the area, who will undoubtedly be wrestling with the influences of the BoS and Institute. Much as with the Loyalists and Patriots from the Revolutionary War, individuals living in these areas are going to have to decide which cause they support. Or, perhaps they might decide to establish their own independence, free from either of the big factions. And once again, the player will likely have an influence on this issue of self-determination—whether these settlements will enjoy greater liberty under the blanket of a larger government, or by forging their own new nation.

The Institute is a successor to the Enclave/NV's Factions
While it's possible that the Power Armor and Vertibirds in the trailer could belong to anyone (Power armor was originally the property of the pre-War military and not a BoS original) it is also reasonable to assume they belong to the Brotherhood. If this is to be the case, they need a faction to play off of. This is where the Institute comes in, as the alternative choice to the typical vanilla hero run.

From what little we know of the Institute and what can be surmised from the trailer, they are a perfect foil to the traditional BoS. Both are elitist organizations with little interest in the run-of-the-mill Wastelanders. Both are technologically advanced. However, the BoS tightly controls the use of technology, even confiscating it from others. The Institute flaunts their technology, giving away implants as a reward. The BoS treats its members like family, with even positions of authority having checks on their powers. The Institute has at least two classes of population: Androids at the bottom and everyone else above them. The BoS refuses to engage peacefully with outsiders. The settled areas around the Institute, such as Diamond City, may benefit from a sort of technological "trickle down;" using whatever tech the Institute no longer has a use for.

  • Isolationism is more the mode of the Western Brotherhood rather than the faction as presented in 3. The Brotherhood under Elder Lyons (and presumably his daughter) pretty-much had an open-door policy with regards to recruitment and trade; they take on as many Initiates as will volunteer, and liberally export large quantities of fresh water from Project Purity. That said, the Brotherhood's reasons for engaging the Institute, and their intentions for its technology, are undoubtedly going to play a role, and could, in fact, lead to the reemergence of the old "Only we can be trusted with technology" mentality the Brotherhood originally touted.
  • Lyons branch represents a deviation from the Orthodox Brotherhood and with Boston a few hundred miles north of DC, it's likely any Brotherhood group appearing in 4 wouldn't be from Lyons Brotherhood.
  • On the contrary, the D.C. Brotherhood is the only one that makes sense. We know Lyons' faction is the only branch which made the push east (since Fallout: Tactics is of dubious canonicity), and thus they're the only significant presence the Brotherhood possesses on the Eastern Seaboard (the Outcasts were always small and ineffectual). By the end of 3, they've secured the Capital Wasteland from both the Enclave and the Super Mutants, and are in possession of a huge resource of fresh water, which would attract people like moths to a flame, and the technology of Adams AFB, which has likely given rise to those airships we see in the trailer. Thus, the D.C. Brotherhood possesses the power base, manpower, and technology to wage war far to the north of their home turf, and are realistically the only faction capable of doing so.
  • Its very unlikely that a group that spent 20 years sitting on their hands in one spot fighting a hopeless war would suddenly expand territory when they're stretched thin as it is. I believe that the BoS we see in Boston could be a of a different chapter. The BoS are everywhere, and the outcasts fit the bill quite well. Many BoS chapters are simply outcasts that the leaders back home didn't want to care about anymore. Lyons could have moved out, but has no incentive with the Mutant attacks, and other regional issues as well as sorting through his spoils of war. While the Outcasts watching Lyons one up them, would be seeking a great technological advance to show off to their brothers back in Cali (of whom are dead or hiding). The Outcasts have been shown killing Enclave and taking their things so its not too far fetched to say they managed to catch a small fleet of Vertibirds. It's still too soon to say of course. Though the BoS seem to be the bad guys getting shot by The Veteran (111 Vault dweller)
  • Jossed: The Institute has nothing to do with the Enclave or any of NV's factions.

The player is the baby from the trailer
He or she made it to a vault, possibly with their family, and they were placed in suspended animation of some sort so that people who were alive from during the war could help advise the new society when the fallout cleared enough for humanity to emerge.
  • Jossed. The player is one of the baby's parents.

An Enclave successor run by Colonel Augustus Autumn will be a major part of the plot.
Given that there's quite a bit in the way of sophisticated tech like Vertibirds and airships around, not to mention Colonel Autumn managing leave the Capital Wasteland (assuming the Lone Wanderer succeeded in talking him down in Fallout 3), it wouldn't be out of the question to imagine him leading his closest subordinates away from the Capital Wasteland and into the Commonwealth. At which point, his "coup" against the Enclave becomes open at last. But instead of dropping off the radar like the Enclave Remnants in the Mojave, he creates a successor organization, with a name like the "New Patriots:" still focused on restoring America and making itself the legitimate government but shunning the twisted agenda and methods of John Henry Eden, let alone the Enclave elites who rode out the Great War in the Poseidon Oil Rig. Though that won't stop the East Coast Brotherhood of Steel from pusuing him or the Institute doing their best to keep the "New Patriots" from usurping their position.

And in a similar manner to Joshua Graham's quests in Honest Hearts, the player's actions would determine whether Colonel Autumn's "rehabilitated" Enclave will live up to its word or revert back to their corrupted heritage.

  • Jossed for the core game. Still potentially open for a DLC.

List of potential Shout-Out
  • The Book of Eli. Considering it was a Fallout film in all but name, it's only logical that there will be a reference to it.
  • John Adams. Well... the game is set smack-dab in the man's home town. Perhaps they'll recreate the Tar and Feather scene from the first episode? Or maybe the PC needs to be a witness (or better yet, the defense) to a trial like the Boston Massacre, defending members of the antagonist faction.

Bethesda will finally have figured out how to do a decent romantic plot.
Hey, I can always hope.
  • Confirmed: Romance is in the game and much more immersive than in Skyrim. As in you actually have to do things to get their affection rather than simply wear a trinket.

Caesar's Legion will appear.
If the game does start in 2277 or shortly after, Caesar is currently exploring east after his defeat at the First Battle of Hoover Dam. Though it's unlikely his main army will appear, the appearance of scouts and Frumentarii looking for something to use to their advantage is certainly possible.
  • Jossed

At some point, the dog will be maimed for tragic effect.
You will then have the dilemma of having the Institute convert him into a Cyberdog, or having him put out of his misery.
  • Jossed, thankfully. Todd Howard confirmed Dogmeat cannot die in the game.

The Player Character is the sole survivor from his/her Vault.
Since we are apparently a denizen of Vault 111, it makes sense that the repeated use of the numeral would have some symbolic significance. Perhaps the PC is the only intended survivor of the vault—its sole intended occupant. That would certainly explain why there were power-armored soldiers there to turn away the fleeing civilians in the flashback. For whatever reason, the player character was more important than the lives of all those others.
  • Confirmed, though it seems Vault 111 was meant to house more than just the player character.

There will be a Shout-Out to Assassin's Creed III.
What with the setting being Boston, it would be obvious that there'd be a shoutout to Assassin's Creed III (as a large chunk of it is set in...well...Colonial Boston.) Maybe we see a pissed-off male NPC named Conner with a vendetta against a mysterious man he can never find? Or maybe we see a smug anti-Ghoul elder named Charlie? Or better yet, we find a simple message scrawled somewhere in the Wasteland. A message written in giant, bold letters: 'WHERE IS CHARLES LEE!?'
  • Jossed

The Vault Dweller will die within the first few quests, upon which we will get our real main character.
The new protagonist could allow for interesting scenarios not open to the average Vault Dweller. Say, for example, the aforementioned "play as an Android" guess.
  • Jossed: The Sole Survivor of Vault 111 is the only player character in the entire game.

The player character lived through the Great War and was brought to the post-apocalyptic future via cryogenic suspension.
(This guess is partly inspired by the script leak and the trailer footage.)

The game opens in the last days of the Great War. The player character is an ordinary citizen, going about their normal life which serves as the game's tutorial, a la Vault 101 from 3. Elements of the later plot will be foreshadowed during this section. (Like say, you'll see a news broadcast about advances at MIT.)

At the end of the tutorial, the player character will make a run for the local vault to escape the nuclear holocaust. This vault's gimmick is sticking its residents in cryogenic suspension for several years. When the player character wakes up, they'll be introduced to the Commonwealth Wasteland.

  • Confirmed.

The Riot Armor from Lonesome Road will return.
The NCR Ranger armor/Riot gear was one of the more iconic and popular items in New Vegas; the stuff just looks badass. Would be a real shame not to include it in the game as a heavy armor alternative to the classic power armor. We probably wouldn't get the NCR version this far east, but being that it was based off pre-war riot gear, it likely exists nation wide, making it possible that it shows up here.
  • Jossed

The protagonist has survived since the Great War, but not by cyrogenics.
The player will run to the Vault, but it will be one of several Vaults designed to fail and lets in the radiation. You are the given a multitude of options to escape the sickness.
  • Option 1: Hide in a cryogenic pod (Human PC)
  • Option 2: Upload yourself into a computer and be placed into a Commonwealth android years later (Android PC)
  • Option 3: Try to physically escape. This will not work, and you'll succumb to radiation sickness (Ghoul PC)
  • Option 4: Inject yourself with what seems like an anti-radiation chem, but find out too late you injected yourself with a strain of FEV (Super-Mutant PC).
  • Option 5: Hide in a machine with unknown function, your brain will be removed and stored. (Robot PC)
  • Jossed: the player character can only be a human, and survives thanks to Vault 111's cryogenic storage units.
    • Although elements of these options do figure in the backstories of characters you meet in the game Nick Valentine is essentially Option 2, pre-War Ghouls are, as in most games in the franchise, the result in a sense of Option 3, Brian Virgil is an intentional example of the latter element of Option 4, and the Automatron DLC re-introduces Robo-Brains, basically the embodiment of Option 5.)

The game's soundtrack will feature a number of Tom Lehrer songs.
Considering the fact that his music tended to address contemporary events and the prospect of nuclear war and the fact that he recorded most of his music at MIT and Harvard (both in Boston) in the '50s and '60s, it seems natural that his music will feature quite prominently on the game's radio stations. ("We Will All Go Together When We Go" and "So Long Mom" seem like likely candidates in particular.)
  • Jossed

    Pre-Release Speculation 
Codsworth will be a possible companion for the player character.
Maybe it'll take some spit, polish, and/or some weaponry upgrades, but with a little tweaking, the last surviving "family member" for the player can join them in their adventures.

The Protagonist died in that explosion.
We are actually an android with fake memories of someone else.
  • Jossed: The Sole Survivor is the real deal.

The protagonist was mind-uploaded into a synth rather than cryopreserved.
Most vaults had a sinister hidden purpose, and this was it for Vault 111.
  • Jossed: Synths are completely post-war technology and didn't come into existence until 160 years after the bombs were dropped.

The protagonist was always a synth.
It's mentioned s/he is ex-military. Perhaps they were created by the army as a combat robot but removed from active service for some reason, perhaps allowed to live a normal life as an experiment.
  • Complication: the baby. I find it hard to believe they had a fully functional synthetic genital systems for both male and female pre-war; not just gestating a fetus, but generating the gametes.
    • This is very, very easy to solve. Female PC: they extracted eggs before cybernization. Male PC: he jerked off into a cup before cyberization. Hell, many transgender people do it in real life before their sex change (if they get one) if they want kids.
  • Jossed: Synths are completely post-war technology and didn't come into existence until 160 years after the bombs were dropped. The player character is a purely human Badass Normal.

The protagonist is human AND synth at the same time until he bothers to check.
Whether or not we're actually a synth will be determined after some arbitrary plot decision, with the implication that the result was correct all along.
  • Zigzagged: For the main game, it's mostly jossed, as the Sole Survivor is presented as purely human and the idea that they might be otherwise is not brought up. However in the Far Harbor DLC, the possibility is raised, and it is up to the player to buy into it or not. There's never any confirmation one way or the other, though.

The Vault Salesman is also an android.
The man in the trench coat later on in the trailer looks an awful lot like the Vault Salesman. Then again, it could just be one of his descendants.
  • Jossed: you can find him as a ghoul, and the man in the trenchcoat is Nick Valentine.

There will be a variant Hardcore mode.
One designed for adapting from a pre-war lifestyle to a post-war one. Adjusting to the flatness / staleness of things like Nuka-Cola, Sugar Bombs, and the like.
  • Jossed to hell.

There will be no romantic subplot.
As the protagonist is still mourning the loss of their family.
  • Jossed, although only some of the companions (Cait, Curie, Danse, Hancock, MacCready, Piper and Preston) can be romanced.

Romance will depend on player angst.
Whether or not you can pursue a new romance depends on how much you angst about your deceased family / pre-war life, with different partners Comforting the Widow and Romancing the Widow based on one's endurance, ambivalence, or utter milking of their Woobiedom.
  • Jossed, you can romance companions as soon as you're out of the Vault and that they like you enough.

Confirmed Bachelor and Cherchez La Femme will have more defined impact on the Protagonist' background.
Assuming these perks return — and unless they're cutting Lady Killer and Black Widow, too, I can't imagine they won't — they'll open up optional dialogue revealing that the player's spouse was The Beard; still a good friend they cared very much about, but the relationship was more about fitting in in the 1950s style culture than anything. Again, this'll be optional, perhaps even without the perks, as they were never required for playing a gay/bisexual character(prostitutes of both sexes were available without them), but it'll be there.
  • Jossed. Confirmed Bachelor and Cherchez La Femme are not in the game.

There will be a quest to bring your spouse back...
As an android. It will likely end in tragedy or at best be a hollow victory.
  • Jossed: No such quest exists. There is an option to adopt a child-synth designed as a replica of your son... by your son... if you choose not to side with the Institute.

The PC will be able to prefer the new world/regret the old one
From what we've seen, the pre-war world of Fallout was at all what most of the characters think it was. Thus the player will be able to either express their regret that the old america was nuked or say that they think it's a new beginning

The Pre-War Section of the game never happened.
Tying in the the android theories, the pre-war parts are just fake memories and the robot is just there to reinforce the illusion.
  • Jossed: The Pre-War section not only happened, as confirmed by the Vault-Tech Agent turning up as a ghoul, but plays a big role in the game's plot.

The Protagonists family isn't dead, and will play a part in the main story.
Unless my eyes deceived me, the trailer cuts out just as the explosion hits. Considering the protagonist is only feet away from his spouse and their baby, and they (presumably) survive, it's not unthinkable that so did they. My money is on the spouse dying, but the baby surviving somehow, and they play a part in the main story.
  • I was just about to suggest a similar theme. They weren't caught at ground zero, so it's possible they survived the shockwave blast, and the player will end up meeting his son's great-great-great-great grandkid, who has built themselves up as some rather prominent figure among the Boston Wastelands, whether they're a raider or what-have-you.
  • Alternatively, the spouse and child were also down at Vault 111 and they were released a couple of years before the Protagonist, allowing the Protagonist to see his child as a toddler.
  • Unlikely. Considering Word of God says that you are the only survivor, that probably means your family didn't survive.
  • Recall that Lying Creator is also a trope. Further, consider the Vault's number is 111. One man. One woman. One child.
  • They could have survived but ended up become ghouls in the process.
    • The most horrible possible thing would be that you find a feral ghoul that groans your name in shocked recognition and then attacks you screaming about how it can't be you, and you're forced to kill them. For added pain, the only things found when looting them are their wedding ring and a faded picture of you.
  • ...Or they could have lived full and comparatively happy lives in the vault while you were frozen, and died of old age long before you're released.
  • Take into account one thing: the creators said that the Sole Survivor's kid's physical characteristics would be based on those of the Sole Survivor and their spouse... but there is little to see about it when the son's a baby. However, seeing him as a toddler, or a young boy, or even a teen... there's a chance that the Sole Survivor might just yet meet their little boy.
  • Confirmed: Shaun, the Sole Survivor's son, is the game's Big Bad, having been stolen from Vault 111 by the Institute 60 years before the game began — an event that saw the Sole Survivor's spouse and the rest of the Vault slaughtered — and reared by the Institute as one of their own. He became the genetic sourcepool for the subsequently-developed Synths and now leads the Institute.

The S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stats will work differently.
The E3 video showed the player is given 17 skill points to distribute, but all stats start at 1. Every game so far, your default stats for everything is 5, and you adjust them from there to balance out how you want your character to be. In the video, only 3 points were put into Intelligence. Any characters with an intelligence of 4 or lower will be a dimwit who can barely speak, but all the fully-voiced dialogue options in this game suggest that won't be possible to do anymore. Also, while it may have just been to save on time for the presentation, they completely overlooked skill distributions like tagging 3 main skills like Small Guns, Science, and Repair, etc. It's possible that the stats were set so low, because there will be many opportunities to increase your stats besides leveling up, the Bobbleheads, and maybe implants.
  • Confirmed to a certain extent. The information from Quake Con seems to indicate that Perks will now be assigned based on how many points you put into each stat. They won't be chosen when you level up, but just given to you automatically, based entirely off the stats you focus on the most.
    • Kind of. Current info is that there are no skill points, but you get a perk every time you level, with what's available restricted based on your SPECIAL stats. The perks are mostly ones that actually have a direct effect instead of just "you have better skill with this ability", most have multiple levels, and you can increase your SPECIAL stats with them.

Power Armor will function more as a power-up than a piece of equipment.
Given the complex animation of the player stepping into a suit in the E3 demo and the overall bulk of the armor itself, it seems unlikely that the player will simply stuff their armor into Hammerspace. Further, icons on the in-armor HUD seem to suggest a limited power supply, and the destructibility of armor as a gameplay mechanic would suggest that the suit is only intended to be used for limited periods. The player will, at some point in the game, gain the components to construct their armor but will be limited until an additional quest is completed which will allow them to acquire some form of transport for it (Vertibirds, anyone?). Coupled together, this will allow the player to summon their suit whenever the need arises, while spending most of their time roaming the wastes in something more practical.
  • Confirmed.

The player's spouse and child are BOTH alive...
However, the catch is that, before the protagonist wakes up from their 200-year nap, one or both of them have been taken away by either The Brotherhood of Steel (which was confirmed to be in-game during the demo), or by the Institute (which, while not seen in gameplay yet, most likely will be in-game if the whole Institute Android sidequest in Fallout 3 meant anything) — assuming both are taken away, then the two factions hold separate custody between the spouse and wife, and try to convince the player to work for them based on the old "I Have Your Spouse/Child" trick, and if the player completes the goals of one faction (gaining their spouse/child as a new companion), the other faction makes THEIR captive bargaining chip a Brainwashed and Crazy Super Soldier, and uses them as a last-ditch attempt to kill the player and destroy the faction they've helped out. It may be possible for a High Charisma player to help their spouse/child resist the brainwashing/programming forcing them to fight, or a High Intelligence/Science player being able to stop the brainwashing/programming that way, but otherwise, this end-game battle will have the player forced to put down their out-of-control spouse/child (bonus points if the child/spouse then calls out the player for killing their parent/child, and asks how the player couldn't have found a way to save them instead).
  • Partially Confirmed, partially Jossed: the Spouse was murdered when the Institute invaded Vault 111 some 60 years before the start of the game, whilst Shaun, the player character's son, was kidnapped and raised by the Institute, to the point that when the Sole Survivor finally gets into the Institute, he's their leader.

"Atom Bomb Baby" is intended to be a Bragging Theme Tune for female protagonists.
Yeah, it can just as easily work as a "my girl is amazing" tune for males as well, but given the player being a Sole Survivor, all signs point to your spouse and child being deceased. If the male player's wife is truly deceased and the notion of Romancing the Widow is considered (in-universe and otherwise) as "too soon", this snappy and upbeat song might seem tragically inappropriate for the protagonist to enjoy... unless you're playing an Action Girl, whereupon the lyrics can equally be twisted into a Bragging Theme Tune about how awesome you are.

You will be able to Goomba Stomp raiders if you managed to land your jetpack power armor on top of them.
How many people immediately thought of this application once they first saw the jetpack-equipped power armor?
  • Confirmed, though it's not quite that easy or effective. Certain leg addons can make this easier and more effective though.

The Newscaster from the Pre-War introduction is the same person who narrates the introduction to the other games.
Obviously, in real-world terms, Ron Perlman voices both the newscaster and the narrator. But given that, it's not too much of a stretch to assume that the Newscaster survived the war; if he survived but became a ghoul, he would have lived for long enough to comment on the events leading up to each of the games... and let's face it, Perlman's voice is already gravelly enough to pass as a ghoul.
  • If they do, he has to be a cigar-chompin', cat lovin', asskickin' badass who sticks with melee weaponry and has a custom Power Glove that is painted red, and is a follower.
  • The fact that ghoul's vocal cords are damaged after the process of ghoulification may joss this. If the newcaster were a Ghoul, his voice would sound different
    • They aren't always vocally wrecked. Moira survived it. Some ghouls even retain their hair fairly well. It's all in the luck of the draw.
      • Not to mention Ron Perlman already has a pretty rough voice. Messing up his vocal chords might not make much of a difference.
  • Confirmed, Ron Perlman is the newscaster.

Denny Crane and Alan Shore from Boston Legal will be in the game as ghouls.
And Ghoulification will have managed to clear up Denny's Mad Cow.

DLC Speculation...
Alright, alright, it's probably too soon to start thinking of DLC before the game itself is released, but considering Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas were both praised for their DLC add-ons, it's guaranteed that Fallout 4 will have at least four (possibly more?) DLCs that take the protagonist on new places in the wastelands. Here's some possible locations (admittedly with broad strokes)
  • Arkham, Dunwich, Innsmouth, Kingsport, an Expy thereof, or somewhere else firmly embedded in Lovecraft Country: Basically, think the Point Lookout DLC, but with even more ghoulish going-ons, along with possible debates over what's supernatural, and what's just mutated.
  • The Pitt, Revisited: It'd be interesting to see how The Pitt will have developed between Fallout 3 and 4, and how the leadership of either Ashur or Werner affected its society.
  • A trip up north to Canada: Just to see what Canadian society is like post-Apocalypse, and maybe learn some lore regarding the US occupation of the country during the Great War.
    • Linked to the Pitt suggestion above, how about a trip specifically to Ronto? It's already been hinted / hyped at by Asher, who compared the Pitt's might to Ronto (alongside the Commonwealth's industry and Capital Wasteland's safety)...
  • A trip to the British Isles, or to a migrant colony hailing from the region: Since Fallout 3 WMGs were going like crazy over how Evil Brit Alistair Tenpenny and Irish Colin Moriarty came to the Capital Wasteland, seeing how and why these migrants are coming to the Americas (along with possibly a tour of their home country, to see how bad it must be that they're crossing the irradiated Atlantic to escape it).
  • Chicago. If the below theory pans out, and the Midwestern Brotherhood of Steel are major players, a DLC that takes us on a trip to the ruined (and supposedly deserted) city of Chicago, and Bunker Alpha, the Midwest BoS' headquarters.
  • A return to the Capitol Wasteland. You won't get to explore the entire map, but you can explore Downtown D.C. Mr. 111 can team up with the Lone Wanderer (who can be customized and will be voiced) to take down an insane android who thinks he's George Washington.
  • Considering that Vertibirds and airships seem more common in this setting, the number of potential DLC locations is massive.
  • Methinks the obvious has yet to be said: New York. Picture exploring the ruined towers of Manhattan with your Power-Armor jetpack, leaping over the abyssal streets, delving into the ghetto of former Chinatown, and facing the mutated horrors of Central Park. References to Escape From New York abound, and the player finds themselves embroiled in a conflict between numerous tribes, each taking residence in various skyscrapers and periodically laying siege to one another.
    • Batshit insane, no-way-they'd-do-it-the-controversy-would-be-too-large, but since 9/11 never happened in Fallout, the Twin Towers could be there. Also, maybe one choice in a quest would lead you to blowing the Statue of Liberty's head off and it rolling though the streets, leading to the protaganist commenting that it's a lot smaller than he imagined (the head was made over 100% bigger on the poster for Escape From New York). Maybe it could have been converted into a Humongous Mecha ala Ghostbusters 2.
      • It seems very unlikely that New York still exists at all. It is the primary target of all the Destroyer-of-World villains in fiction. the city would be nuked to oblivion.
      • Not necessarily. I think it was said somewhere that Washington DC was targeted by more nukes than any other city, being the capital and all, and it's still standing, for a given value of standing. Thinking militarily, New York would actually be a lower priority target.
      • In reality, absolutely. In the Fallout universe, if there's a story they can tell that can use New York, they'll tell it.
  • Another possibility could be a trip the to New California Republic, or rather the vicinity of and around the Lost Hills as part of an expedition with the Brotherhood of Steel (thanks in part to their new technological advantage). It'd be interesting to see both how far the NCR rebuilt their corner of the wasteland since Fallout 2 (which is also alluded to in Fallout: New Vegas) and the fate of the "original" West Coast Brotherhood, all while tying up the plotlines of the previous games. It could also open opportunities to reshape the local political landscape in a manner not too dissimilar to the Courier.
  • Beneath the Earth. The last two games each had a DLC that evoked Sci-Fi or Fantasy B-Movies from the 1950s and early 60s. Fallout 3 had Mothership Zeta (alien invasion), Fallout: New Vegas had Old Wolrd Blues (Mad Science), so it would make sense for the trend to continue. A likely case would be the PC falling into a crack in the earth to a sort of underlayer. There they will fight Dinosaurs that make paleontologists cry (bonus points if they look like how dinos were thought to look in the Fifties), mammoths, sabertooth tigers, and encounter two different factions of Caveman that you need to negotiate a peace with in order to fight off the Mole Men. All while avoiding the hazardous lava-filled environment.

It's the Midwestern Brotherhood
A keen-eyed fan of the trailer noticed something interesting, the brotherhood symbol seen on the Prydwen and in the concept art is reversed, just like the splinter chapter in Fallout Tactics. Give that Brotherhood's rather Fascist attitude of things, it might explain why they show up as enemies in the montage trailer. A more detailed explanation is at this link.
  • It would be nice to know what happened to them (and what part of their story is canon).
  • They seemed to be a small group with some history according to the Eastern BoS of Lyons, or they were greatly understated. I'd like to see them in Boston, but their territory probably won't lead them there from the looks of things. Legion would be too much of an annoyance.
    • Jossed'. It's the DC Chapter.

The Player Character will be able to show the least pleasant aspects of Pre-War America
Considering the US never really got past the 50's, the Player Character will be able to show what a pre-war american was in all its racism, bigotry, homophobia, elitist glory. And everyone will call you on it.
  • Jossed, you can at worst be rude and/or greedy, but true evilness is impossible unless you murder every person you see.

Super Mutants raided your vault after the others were defrosted
That's why you're the sole survivor. The others were defrosted (Except you due to malfunction), the super mutants took the entire population, and exposed them to FEV. Later on, you meet your spouse, who is now a super mutant. She (or he) is now a companion, akin to Fawkes.
  • Jossed: Vault 111 was raided and its inhabitants slaughtered, including the Sole Survivor's spouse, but not by super mutants. It was the Institute.

There will be alternate dialogue recorded for low Intelligence/Charisma characters.
Hilarity Ensues.
  • Forgive me for being skeptic, but I must point out that the character was only given 3 intelligence (from a default of 1) in the preview video, but talked just fine.
    • Jossed, SPECIAL stats only influence your scientific and overall "smart" skills. A character with low Intelligence or Charisma is respectively tech-ignorant and not persuasive, but not stupid.

Low Intelligence/Charisma characters aren't "stupid", just "struggling to adapt".
Instead of being all "ME LIKE THE MOO-MOOS" or something like that, the Player Character can speak like a regular person but is the Book Dumb / Genre Blind / Open Mouth, Insert Foot type who (typically) makes for easy prey for raiders and other wasteland hazards. It's not that they can't function like "normal" people, but they're completely out of their element when it comes to post-war lifestyle and culture.
  • Jossed, see above.

Madison Li will return
According to Broken Steel, she left for the Commonwealth.
  • Confirmed: She's one of the Institute's head scientists.

At one point, the protagonist can (optionally) repeatedly call out their child's name.
Because memes, that's why.

There will be a Non Standard Game Over during the prologue.
Shooing off the Vault-Tec employee will prevent you from entering the Vault entirely, as you won't have the proper clearance.
  • Alternatively, this will be subverted, the player's spouse chastising you and forcing you to continue.
    • Or, another option, the employee will start to urge the player to reconsider as he closes the door, or insist that he finish his business before leaving.
    • Confirmed. If you take too long in the prologue or attempt to wander off, you get nuked.

The Player Character knew Maxson in his time as a soldier.
It's possible that he or she might have known Maxson (before he founded the Brotherhood of Steel) as a fellow soldier if not as a friend before the Great War. This would make the Player Character a major focus for various factions should it be revealed. Of course, his or her actions would also determine whether it would benefit or crush the Brotherhood.
  • Jossed. The male character (the soldier) does not know of Maxson. They do however meet a grown-up Arthur Maxson.

The game is not a chronological sequel to Fallout 3.
If we take Todd Howard's words literally, the game begins 200 years after the bombs fell, which would mean the game begins in October 2277, only a month after the Lone Wanderer set out on their own adventure.
  • There's only a definitely confirmed passing of 2 weeks at the start of Broken Steel. Other than that, for all we know, the whole game takes place within a couple days, as improbable as that seems.
    • Jossed, the game takes place in 2287, 10 years after Fallout 3.

The GNR numbers station of Creepypasta legend will make an appearance.
As a Shout-Out to the Fallout 3 Numbers Station Creepypasta, Galaxy News Radio will halt on rare occasion to play a series of numbers read in a monotone by Three Dog. These numbers will either be entirely random to fuel fan speculation, or predictions of the future that are either too wild to be true, or consistent within Fallout canon. (It's doubtful that any predictions will be realistic, as a failed prediction of Queen Elizabeth II's death is what Jossed the original story.)
  • Alternatively, the first update, a few days in, will add them before anyone has a chance to realize they weren't there at the start. It'll add "predictions" from after the game went gold to a bit before the first update. More will be trojaned in in every update, all being "predictions" set between the last patch and when the new one went gold, thereby scaring the shit out of everyone until the Fallout 4 GECK is released and they discover the trick.
  • Jossed for now.

Mr. House will be referenced somewhere.
It is mentioned in the lore Mr. Robert House attended the MIT (which in Fallout 4 have transformed into the Institute). Being a famous and rich pre-war figure, pre-war MIT would probably look at him highly, and he also probably donated a huge swath of money to MIT. He also probably designs various technologies while still in MIT, which he carries over when he started RobCo. Now flash forward to the post-apocalyptic Boston, the MIT still stands and have evolved in the Institute. House would probably be mentioned in various terminals and pre-war record in the Institute, because of this he is probably well-known among the members of the Institute, where most of them probably revere him as some kind of mythical figure. Also his prototypical designs of technologies was probably picked up by the Institute and put into use, maybe you'll encounter some early model of Securitrons owned and produced by the Institute, maybe they're heavily upgraded and used as elite shock troops among the Institute's android army.

As bonus, the player could recognize the mentioning of Mr. House, as he was a very famous pre-war figure (being an expy to Howard Hughes and all). Maybe when the PC came across some Institute robots, they can mention to Institute members how they saw the robots in news or science show as RobCo's newest line of robots. And PC with high science/intelligence stat might even have some familiarity with Mr. House, and can opens some dialogue options with Institute member. Maybe corrects some misconception about Mr. House, starts a quest with an Institute researcher obsessed with Mr. House, or maybe recover Mr. House robot designs and build them (if the PC sided with the Institute).

  • Confirmed: House is referenced by Deacon if he encounters Deezer.

The Independence ending of New Vegas is canon and in addition to the above
The Courier will be there, in The Commonwealth, searching for prototype blueprint of Securitron in order to replenish his/her army. the reason why this troper believe he/she should make an appearance is because The Courier is a Cyborg, and Fallout 4 will certainly feature Android strongly in the story, his/her appearance would definitely fit into the theme of Fallout 4, the theme of cybernetic and android.

Desert Ranger armor is an excellent choice in concealing the identity of The Couriers, thus respecting players

The Brotherhood will have rebuilt Liberty Prime and you fight him.
Int the Broken Steel ending the scribes are in the process of rebuilding him and even improving on the designs. Perhaps, if it is the same branch of the Brotherhood in this game, they will have finished their work.
  • Confirmed: The Brotherhood rebuilt Liberty Prime. You get to reprogram him to fight for the Brotherhood again.

You'll meet a ghoul NPC that knew you before the War.
Having a Pre-War friend who might've been a neighbor or someone the PC served with would be interesting as a character and as a plot device. He could help acclimate the PC and thus players to the "rules" of the Wasteland (being a bit more worldly than Codsworth), it would lead to nice segue into explaining what ghouls are, and if he's a veteran, probably also be a good candidate for being a combat companion as well.
  • Sort of confirmed. You do meet someone from the Pre-War prologue as a ghoul, but it's the Vault-Tec agent who sold you a place in Vault 111 and who got refused entry.
    • Not to mention that, in a random encounter, you can run across a pack of feral ghouls who were formerly your neighbours.

You'll have to either kill to get the Pip-Boy or you'll be able to talk into getting it.
Depending on your skill level for speech would determine on if it worked or not in a violent or non-violent way. In the E3 presentation there was a dead body laying in front of the protagionst which could have been an Overseer or someone else.
  • Did we watch the same video? He was prying the thing off of a decaying skeleton. That plus the devs' insistence that he's the vault's Sole Survivor make me doubt that he'll have to kill anyone to get it.
  • Jossed, you get the Pip-Boy from a skeleton in Vault 111.

The Think Tank will be referenced by the Institute.
Given the Think Tank's actions and experiments before the War including the Tranquility Lane simulation program Dr. Braun comissioned, odds are the Institute would likewise be aware of their existence, if not outright considering them a Worthy Opponent. It wouldn't be surprising either if there's some form of communication between them as well, treating the Big MT as a competing rival in the pursuit of science.
  • Many of them likely went to MIT. I doubt the Think Tank was too well known though, it's likely it was heavily classified.
  • Jossed: The Think Tank is not mentioned at all.

Diamond City was founded by Vault Dwellers.
These dwellers came from a Vault that was devoted to baseball, hence why they took over Fenway Park.
  • Jossed: Nope, it was just ordinary settlers.

The Protagonist dies during the Prologue.
The Protagonist was at one time very much a real person, however, not even the most vigilant veteran can withstand the concussive force or nuclear fallout of a warhead; nor would the people already safely inside the Vault risk their safety by opening it so shortly after the bombs fell. The Protagonist the player plays as following the Great War is likely an android, clone or some sort of synthetic human. The prologue is an artificial memory that they experienced prior to being turned on for the first time. The Institute or the Enclave are seemingly the only organizations with enough technical prowess to handle something like that. As for why they would, it may be a situation like the planned story for Fallout: Van Buren, which is to say that either organization may need an unwitting Pre-War agent to bypass some security measure.
  • If that was the case, wouldn't someone be there to meet them?
    • With the revelation that Codsworth is a companion, it may be that this is his purpose, to greet the PC after they exit the vault and track their progress, offering subtle pushing in the right direction if they stray from their purpose for too long.
  • Jossed: The Sole Survivor is the original human being.

Both the Protagonist and their spouse are shapeshifting Super Soldiers and/or androids, and they know it.
In one of the Wham Episodes of the game, the Survivor will have their synthetic nature dramatically revealed, and the protagonist...shrugging it off, because they know they weren't alive in a traditional sense all along. In the following dialogue, they will reveal that they were manufactured by the Pre-War Enclave as the ultimate infiltrators, spies who could change their face simply by looking into a special mirror (and as it turns out, the spouse's comments as you changed your appearance were actually happening in-universe, as you remodeled your face to fit your self-image). However, they made the spies too well, in that they perfectly imitated humans, right down to questioning why they were simply slaves to be thrown at a problem until it goes away, and eventually demanding to be treated like trueborn veterans, right down to having their own Vault. It will then be revealed the reason a nuke was dropped on your home was an act of spite against the Enclave's rebellious creations, and your character survived only due to a unique mutation that allowed them to enter a state of "living death" to await a safer environment.

Bonus points if the now-ghouled individual who dropped the nuke on you is the Big Bad, and in the best endings it turns out your family and other models are in dreaming death too, with their reawakening being another step on the long road to recovery (as they remember the old world perfectly well, and can probably tell the Institute what they're doing wrong).

  • Jossed: The Sole Survivor is perfectly human and the Big Bad is your son, stolen from Vault 111 by the Institute and now grown up into their leader by the time of the game. To say nothing of the fact that this technology is far beyond what Pre-War America had available to it; before the bombs dropped, the best that America had were the Robobrains, Mr. Gutsies and, in secret labs, the prototypes of Forced Evolutionary Virus horrors like Deathclaws and Super Mutants. The synths weren't created until well over 140-150 years after the bombs dropped.

A quest (possibly the main quest) will involve an aerial battle between the Constitution and Prydwen.
Because they wouldn't put rocket boosters on an 18th Century warship unless it needed to engage another warship in the sky.
  • They would if they repurposed the ship for exploration purposes. Those rocket boosters could get them over the Atlantic.
    • Jossed, the Constitution rams itself into a building after takeoff. The Prydwen is destroyed however by a bomb in it, a hacked Liberty Prime or an artillery strike from the Minutemen depending on the ending you choose.

Companion Speculation.
So we know we're going to be getting twelve companions and that at least some of them will be romanceable, and that gender is no object. Dogsmeat and Codsworth have been confirmed as companions though whether they're part of the twelve or not is unclear, they do fit with previous game's trends in terms of party make up.
  • Dogsmeat — Confirmed
  • Codsworth — Confirmed
  • A supermutant/nightkin: Marcus, Fawkes, and Lily are all very popular companions throughout the series. Would make sense that they give us another token mutant.
  • A ghoul: Raul and Charon set precedent here.
    • Confirmed, a ghoul wearing a redcoat uniform and using the pseudonym "John Hancock" is a companion.
  • A member of the Brotherhood of Steel: Another tradition.
    • Confirmed, a Brotherhood Paladin named Danse appears as a companion.
  • The redhead in the arena seen in the E3 trailer.
    • Confirmed; her name is Cait, and she's a drug-addled Irish pit fighter.
  • An android: Because at least one character needs to be.
    • Confirmed in two cases, the first being a prototype self-aware synth named "Nick Valentine" who works as a private eye, and the second being X6-88, the latest and most advanced synth created by the Institute.
    • Additionally, a third is a higher-functioning Mr. (technically Ms.) Handy robot uploaded into a braindead synth, and a fourth is a Tomato in the Mirror and is the Brotherhood companion above.

The Enclave will be a joinable faction.
With their crushing defeat at the hands of the Brotherhood in D.C., the Enclave's presence in Boston is likely minimal at best, but still dangerous, and the player will have to figure out what they are going to do about them.

Picture a small, secluded bunker wherein the last remnants of the Enclave have gathered. They've grown increasingly paranoid due to their isolation, but are still bent of restoring America to its former glory. Since the player character is from the actual Pre-War world, they have a unique standing among them. The rank-and-file view them with a sort of reverence, an example of America's former glory, and the leadership are keen to utilize the player's Pre-War knowledge and skills for the Enclave's benefit.

The player can choose to either join the Enclave wholeheartedly and begin cleansing the wastes in the name of America posthaste, or they can try to convince these misplaced patriots that there are other ways. There would be numerous sympathetic NPCs for the player to interact with (and possibly recruit as companions), and to get a sense of where the Enclave as a people are coming from. Their genuine love for America would become a major theme, and the player could either feed that fervor or point out the many faults in their idealized vision of what America was truly like.

In the end, the player would have a face-off with the Enclave leader(s), either because they are tired of doing all the work for them and think they would make a better reclaimer of America, or because they want to try and change the Enclave's course. Both of these paths can be handled with either violence or reason, and are dependent on the player's interactions with everyone else in the bunker. Either they have the man and firepower to stage a coup, or they have influenced enough minds for the leadership to see the light, as well.

Either way, democracy is served.

  • Jossed, the Enclave makes no appearance whatsoever aside from a few suits of their X-01 Power Armor. However, the only "good" faction in the game, the Minutemen do espouse all the good ideals of America, use the patriotic songs from Enclave radio to attract people to settle in safe zones they control, don't discriminate against ghouls and have no ulterior agenda except to help people.

There will be opportunities, in dialogue and gameplay, to become a Mama Bear / Papa Wolf
In light of losing their own child whatever karma the protagonist falls under, we can all agree that they'd never let a child character be harmed. If they do...well...

The Player Character was The Dreaded / Red Baron during the Sino-American War
And depending on dialogue options, story branches or even actions taken during gameplay that result in Evil Karma, may be revealed to be a Retired Monster.

Desmond Lockheart will make an appearance
At the end of the Point Lookout DLC, Desmond (if he was still alive) mentioned that he planned to go up north after he was done with Calvert's bunker. Maybe the old ghoul will make an appearance in the main game or DLC, continuing his long game against the Calvert's or perhaps trying to acquire the technology of the Institute.
  • Jossed

It will be possible to destroy radios
Because.. I don't know

When first creating your character, your choice of hairstyles will be more limited to 'normal' styles
Because you're character is just an average man/woman in everyday life. Sometime after leaving the vault, you'll be able to change your hairstyle with many more varieties available, reflecting the new wasteland environment you're now in.
  • Confirmed; while there are some slightly unusual haircuts and colors in character creation, most are relatively normal. Barbers in the wasteland can provide more outlandish styles and colors for the character.

Dogmeat's Immortality
Near the mid-or-end-game, Dogmeat will be revealed as an android dog. Not only is it the first android dog, but also the first completely invincible android. This will have little impact on the story up until the end, where you must fight an invincible android as the final boss. This is also where the blue laser from the trailer comes into play, as you use it to destroy the android enemy, and sacrificing Dogmeat to do it. Fortunately, The Institute can build another one.
  • Interesting possibility, but it's very likely that the 'immortality' is just something along the lines of the companions in New Vegas on normal difficulties only getting incapacitated in combat, and getting back up again after the shooting's over.
  • Jossed: Dogmeat's immortality is pure Gameplay and Story Segregation; all Companions are immune to dying.

How the player character (and their family) survived, and what that means for them.
From what we see in the trailer, the player character, their spouse, and their infant child are all on top of Vault 111 when a nuke hits near Boston. We see the mushroom cloud and the shockwave washing over them before it smashes to black. I surmise that this is how it will play out in the game itself, and further that the entire family is, in fact, dead/mortally injured, by the blast.

While they are unconscious, however, they are all taken into the Vault by its scientist staff, and immersed in bio med gel before being cryogenically frozen. The Fallout world already has precedent for this procedure. They were intended to be kept in this state until they were fully recovered, in essence brought back from the dead, and then unfrozen. Exactly when and how they could safely be unfrozen, however, is unknown to science, thus the scientists use the subjects to test various methods of revitalization. Like the unfortunate Dobbs, many of these subjects disintegrate shortly after being unthawed, but their deaths serve as data for the next iteration of unthawing, and the cryo pods are reprogrammed accordingly.

Time passes, and close to 200 years after the bombs fell, the scientists unfreeze the player's spouse, and finally achieve success. The spouse is alive, but are then faced with the knowledge of their unnatural fate, that the player's vital signs still show that they are dead, and that they will be subjected to further inhumane testing. Knowing all of this, they decide to escape. Their flight deals considerable damage to the Vault, much like James' exit from Vault 101, but in this case it proves to be fatal, as what staff aren't killed in the escape succumb shortly thereafter.

Decades pass, and eventually automated systems read that the player's life signs are stable enough to attempt unthawing them. Thus the player awakens to a deserted Vault as its apparent sole survivor, and begins their quest to find out what happened. Their spouse, of course, has already lived out a lifetime of hardship in the wastes, and when the player finds them, it's just one more heartache to add to the pile. And as to the fate of their child, well, neither of them knows what happened to little Shaun, thus setting up the child's status as the final key to the plot, whatever that may be.

  • Partially Confirmed, partially Jossed: the Sole Survivor and their family were indeed taken into Vault 111 and placed into cryo-stasis. However, the rest of the Vault's occupants are massacred, including the player character's spouse, when the Vault is raided by the Institute some 140 years after the bombs drop. Thus the player wakes as the Sole Survivor. They do get to find their son... as the current leader of the Institute...

Piper is actually a recruitable character like Dogmeat and Codsworth are.
  • Bethesda's post about her on Facebook and here is a mirror for people who don't want to use Facebook
    • This has been confirmed since Quakecon, so... Great?
    • I am the OP of this WMG. To be quite fair, I tend to avoid as much info as possible, so I was not aware of that being confirmed.

A few story speculations based on achievements leaked
The list of achievements can be found here:
  • War Never Changes — obviously we know you will escape the great war
    • Jossed, it's for entering the wasteland.
  • When Freedom Calls — you will meet Preston Garvey who then ask's you to aid in a battle of some kind
    • Confirmed.
  • Unlikely Valentine — likely you will become a mobster of some kind.
    • Jossed — the name of the quest refers to Nick Valentine.
  • Reunions — you will reunite with your child... however I don't think it will be sunshine and rainbows.
    • Jossed — the quest is headed this way, but you only find Kellogg, the spouse's murderer and Shaun's kidnapper
  • Dangerous Minds — You will fight a psychic or psyker.
    • Jossed You journey into the mind of the man who killed your spouse and kidnapped your son.
  • Hunter/Hunted — You will be hunting rogue androids.
    • Zigzagged — you have to hunt a Synth Courser to steal his guidance chip to infiltrate the Institute
  • The Molecular Level — this may seem a bit tough to guess...but my bets are on shrinking
    • Jossed You Build a teleporter to travel to the institute.
  • The Nuclear Option- you are going to blow up city hall (for what reason, i have no clue)
    • Jossed You blow up the Institute when siding with either the Minutemen, Railroad, or Brotherhood.
  • Institutionalized — Potentially be placed in a mental ward still running after the apocalypse?
    • Jossed You Get acquainted with the people in the institute.
  • Mankind Redefined- Either you are going to push for rights of androids or clones to be viewed as people
    • Jossed The quest is about Father naming you as his successor as head of the Institute
  • Powering Up- release androids from their masters
    • Jossed You upgrade the Diamond City Radio transmitter so that the Institute can broadcast your speech, and you activate the Institute's reactor.
  • Nuclear Family — Watch your son die of old age.
    • 'Semi-Confirmed, albeit it's of cancer instead of old age.
  • The First Step — able to join the Minutemen.
    • Confirmed
  • Taking Independence — You will lead the minute men to victory against the enemy (Brotherhood of steel?)
    • Confirmed, said enemy is the Mirelurk horde that took over their base.
  • Old Guns — get old guys (potentially ghouls) to fight for the minute men
    • Partially confirmed, it's actually about rebuilding the artillery cannons of the Minutemen after retaking the Castle
  • Semper Invictus — Join the Brotherhood of Steel
    • Confirmed.
  • Blind Betrayal — I guess either betray the Brotherhood, or kick out the traitors, or eliminate the outcasts? (this one has me confused)
    • Confirmed — you hunt down a traitor.
  • Ad Victorium — (might sound crazy) you win for the Brotherhood with the help of Liberty Prime (or another giant robot).
    • Confirmed.
  • Tradecraft — Join the Railroad (group for the freedom of androids)
  • Underground Undercover — discover a conspirator in the railroad (potentially join them?)
    • Confirmed, it's about joining the Railroad.
  • Rockets' Red Glare — Blow up a airship (whose can be anyone's guess)
    • Confirmed: you can blow up the Brotherhood of Steel's airship in some endings.
  • Sanctuary — I guess make the stronghold Preston Garvey lives in a nice place?
    • Confirmed
  • Never Go It Alone — While not a story achievement the silhouettes hint at possibly a protectron and ninja companion
    • Jossed - it's for recruiting 5 separate companions.
  • ...The harder they fall — Giant creatures are confirmed (I guess supermutant behemoths, Giant molerats, a Giant radscorpion, a mirelurk queen, or even a truly huge deathclaw (or a rodent of unusual size)).
    • Confirmed, you get this one by killing several giant creatures such as Mirelurk Queens and Behemoths.
  • Homerun/touchdown- You can play sports (not much else)
    • Jossed — Touchdown is for dying by getting a Mini-Nuke launched in your face, specifically by a Super Mutant Suicider
  • Prepared for the future- You decide the fate of the Commonwealth...however I am certain a new threat begins to emerge that will be explored in a broken steel esque DLC
    • Confirmed - it's for completing the quest line of the faction you choose.


Radiation, the supernatural, and Elder Gods
In the Fallout-verse radiation is not just a naturally occurring energy source but the tool of some kind of supernatural force or being. Some people are immune to the mind controlling effects burst of radiation have, sapient ghouls, while others are forcibly bent to its will like the feral ghouls. The immense strides humans made in the control and use of radiation strengthened whatever Elder God or unearthly force that was connected to it. In turn it influenced the humans to grow more and more dependent on radioactive materials ultimately provoking the war which gave it free reign in the world. The Children of Atom hear its voice and obey willingly becoming drunk on its power while gaining immunity to the harmful side effects of radiation. Jack Cabot's father Lorenzo discovered the ruins of one of its previous conquests, the ancient city apparently of inhuman origin, only to be enslaved as one of its avatars in the world by the crown.

Combined with the psychotropic visions seen under the effects of the Children of Atom in Far Harbor, in the lower areas of the Dunwitch Bores, the Dunwitch Building in the Capitol Wasteland, and a myriad of other small things the evidence all fits. This may also explain why an outside force like the Zetans who are clearly advanced but appear free of radiation based tech were studying humanity, assuming they could precieve the unknown horror manipulating us it might have been of interest to them to see how we operated under its influence.

Nick Valentine is the Mysterious Stranger of Fallout 4
The mysterious entity known throughout the series as the Mysterious Stranger is in fact Nick Valentine. Not the synth detective or his pre-war original version, but a newer, more realistic looking synth model. Valentine specified he chose to wore the trench coat and hat because he felt he should, which just happens to be the same outfit as the Stranger. It also is an outfit not unfitting of a pre-war cop. He's also the only companion to actually notice and comment on the Stranger when he appears, making it clear he is aware of him and that the Stranger is actually present, and not just a figment of the player/an ingame non-canon quirk. The new synth Valentine, like his predecessor before him, was dumped by/escaped the Institute due to his personality, but escaped with some kind of teleportation tech used by the Institute. However, unlike than a cop or a detective, this Valentine is a vigilante, protecting the Sole Survivor (and presumably others in the Wasteland) from harm as the Mysterious Stranger.
  • He is investigating the Mysterious Stranger, so maybe that's why: he recognizes his own body movements from the outside on some subconscious level, and finds it incredibly uncanny.

  • Or maybe he's the ghost of the original Nick Valentine?

The Minutemen are a Renegade Splinter Faction of the Enclave.
Given their professional demeanor and their harkening back to the Pre-War United States, it wouldn't be surprising if the Minutemen were originally rogue members of the Enclave (possibly involving Col. Augustus Autumn) who sought to revive a more hopeful, benevolent vision for America. Not to mention that they stand for what Pre-War Americans wished they were.
  • Unlikely. The Minutemen were apparently founded around the 2180s, well before the Enclave came to the East Coast.

The Minutemen had a similar beginning to the Brotherhood of Steel
A group of US soldiers that ended up defecting over atrocities just before the nuclear exchange and were missed in the growing chaos of pre-War America. The Minutemen's progenitors just wasn't stationed at a R&D facility and had less technology like power armor on hand, eventually leading them to never pick up the obsession with tech or the tendency to hole up in bunkers and look down on Wastelanders of the Brotherhood (while also unfortunately leading to the Minutemen's origin being forgotten somewhere along the way). Now, granted the Minutemen are indicated to have come to prominence as a defensive force in the 2180s, but the key word there is prominence — the group that would eventually become the Minutemen could still have existed in a more obscure, hidden form in the preceding century.

The Institute is responsible for the super mutants in The Commonwealth
The super mutants here have smooth, olive skin, like Mariposa strain muties. However, there are also behemoths and other variations more commonly associated with the yellowish, rough-skinned Vault 87 mutants. This seems like a bit of a disconnect until you follow the Freedom Trail, and find the Railroad. There, Deacon can explain what the Institute has done, and one of the things he mentions as he rattles off the list is "FEV experiments." He doesn't go into any more detail than that, but it's a good bet that the Institute are the ones responsible for this current crop of super mutants, and why they appear to be a mix of the Mariposa and Vault 87 strains.
  • Confirmed by Virgil, who grew a conscience after spending the better part of a decade's on FEV experiments on abducted wastelanders and defected. You can find his former research lab within the Institute.

Deacon is your Great Grandson.

Deacon knows more about the institute than others in the Railroad. And will even bat for you for no real reason. Or stalks you incessantly. And his investigation of the past seems wierd unless he had good reason. It is dismissed because he seems to be letting sentiment lead him, when he actually calculates that Father might get maudlin, and that after their disagreements there is no way he'd go back even if there was any possibilty he'd get invited back. So he likes you and of course he's not a romantic option. Deacon is only listened to now because he wasn't before, despite being reasonably up in the ranks. The distrust? Ex-institute and he warned about the cost of letting someone in.

Why ex-institute. Fell for someone. We can see some institute members see the synths as alive. It's rare but a few do.

Arthur Maxson is a Primarch. And is shaping the Brotherhood into something akin to a Space Marine Legion in all but name.
The reason why he seems rather similar to the God-Emperor of Mankind is because he is, possibly one of the "missing" Primarchs. Thanks to the machinations of Chaos however, he got thrown back in time to Terra in the distant past...only to be found and adopted by the Maxsons, then later brought under Elder Lyons' watch before becoming Elder himself. Over time though in his quest to take The Slow Path back into the future, his knowledge of what he thinks to be the Emperor's will has been infused with the Brotherhood's beliefs, merging them to his benefit and that of his order.

Shaun in Kellogg's Memories isn't what he appears
The narrative goes to GREAT lengths to not define the timeline of the last memory. Valentine only says Kellogg and the boy left "some time ago," and nothing else in the apartment either in the Memory or the real world points to any evidence of how much time has passed. It's a real possibility that the Shaun in the memory is actually Synth Shaun — and that the Memory could have happened as little as months before you enter the wasteland. Father does note that Synth Shaun was in the Commonwealth for periods of time, so the memory could simply have been one of those field tests. The kicker? "Shaun" asks the courser escort "Are we going to see my FATHER?" And the courser does not deny that they are, indeed, going to do just that. Perhaps it wasn't a lie just to get the "boy" to come along.
  • It has to be like this. The Shaun in Kellogg's final memory is twelve at the most. Father is (by his own admission) 60 years old. If Kellogg had been last seen with the boy 50 years ago, Nick surely would at some point have said "by the way, if this was Shaun, he is an old man now, and if Kellogg is human he probably died already". I assume "some time ago" is at the most a year. I would go so far as to say that the only narrative reason Synth-Shaun exists is so that Kellogg's memories don't create a plot-hole, and still preserve the surprise of what happened to Human-Shaun.

The East Chapter came into contact with the Midwestern one
That would nicely explain their rather abrupt changes in attitude at the very least.
  • It would also explain how Arthur Maxson got his hands on the Prydwen airship, as there was no evidence of it in the possession of Elder Lyons during his reign.
  • Sort of.. Fallout 3 terminals and New Vegas dialogue with Veronica both indicate that the East cost chapter never broke contact with West coast branches. All chapters of the Brotherhood maintain contact with each other and share information unless they are on radio silence like the lock down in New Vegas. Even though the East chapter had broken several Brotherhood traditions, they weren't ever removed from the Brotherhood and the west continued to provide them with information about the Enclave.

The closest thing to a canon ending will be the Minuteman ending
This is because the Mintutemen do NOT destroy the Brotherhood (unlike the Institute or Railroad endings), but since they are basically an East Coast version of the NCR, it would make for an interesting conflict between them and the new East Coast Brotherhood if THEY were the ones who destroyed the Institute (unlike if the Brotherhood claim total control through their ending).
  • The Minutemen do not HAVE TO destroy the Brotherhood. If you can get the Brotherhood mad at you, you can get a quest from Preston Garvey to blow up the Prydwen.

Dogmeat is descended from the Lone Wanderer's Dogmeat.
The Wanderer, saddened both by Sarah's death and seeing where Maxson was taking the Brotherhood, knew that it was time to pass the torch. So, he sent off one of his canine companion's puppies out into the wastes to find someone to help. The pup travelled to the Commonwealth, and he hooked up with the Minutemen in Quincy. However, that was just days before the Gunners attacked. The refugees were concerned about bringing the strange dog with them, (Or considering him for food) but Mama Murphy told them that they needed to keep the Dog. The Sight showed her that she needed to bring Dogmeat with her, so that he could find his Chosen Owner, and hopefully keep them from getting killed.
  • This is all but confirmed canon; Dogmeat from Fallout 2 is the same as in 1 (Easter Egg or Timey-Wimey Ball, take your pick) who somehow sired the line that leads to Dogmeat in Fallout 3. Unless it's directly Jossed in-game it's safe to assume Status Quo Is God.

There'll be DLC involving those Americans stationed overseas when the Great War happened.
In the Pre-War prologue, it's mentioned by the TV newscaster that there were still American soldiers stationed in places like Southeast Asia. Chances are, at least some of those garrisons would have survived, ghoulified or otherwise. And what if some of those American remnants, or worse, another offshoot of the Enclave descended from those soldiers decide to reclaim their old homeland at last?
  • Jossed: No such DLC was made.

A DLC-added quest will have the player hunting Hairy Deathclaws
This quest will be Played for Laughs, with it being given by a Mad Scientist who tried to experiment on Deathclaws... with hair-growth tonics. Cue a giant Take That Us in regards to the Fandom's Berserk Button on Hairy Deathclaws, with the Survivor getting to snark about how they're willing to kill the Deathclaws, but just because they look completely stupid with hair instead of considering them a dangerous threat.
  • Jossed: No such DLC was made.

Nora/Mrs Vault 111 has recently retired from a rather colourful career to raise a family
Why does the female player character have all the same capabilities as the male military veteran? That is because she has similar skills gained as a paramilitary operations officer for the CIA or another similar posting. Its a rough life and quite dangerous too. When she settled down with her military veteran husband, both left their hazardous occupations for something safer. In her case, by "dusting off that law degree" as noted by her husband.
  • This could also mean that Nora's the Fallout equivalent of Alex Mason.

Vault 114 (Park Street Station) is a Gambit Pileup resulting from a political favor for a corrupt union boss with mafia ties and left-anarchist political leanings, which backfired on Vault-Tec when the union rebelled, taking the vault and assets for themselves.
Vault 114's experiment was to round up a bunch of uber-wealthy family who bought their way in, priming them for a world of luxuries before stuffing them into cramped, shared living quarters under the eye of an insane, incompetent overseer who couldn't be reasoned with in any constructive manner. Why would Vault-Tec, a front for the ultra-right wing Enclave, construct a vault with the express purpose of oppressing the rich and powerful like themselves? The whole thing reeks of communism in a setting where the Red Scare lasted more than a century.

I have a theory. When you go in to rescue Nick Valentine, it's overrun with Triggermen — ghoulified working-class gangsters descended from a corrupt labor union that won Vault 114's contract. It was a political favor for Skinny Malone's ancestor, granted by Boston's corrupt pre-war Mayor with Enclave ties (you know, the one who built a lavish shelter for himself on the taxpayer's dime) in exchange for mafia services to intimidate whistleblowers and extort his opponents. The vault's revolutionary "Eat The Rich" experiment was shaped by the union's cynical left-wing ideals in a hyper-Mccarthyist America where the Labor Left had been repressed to criminal margins — which Vault-Tec played along with For Science!. Sometime along construction when it became apparent that nuclear war might actually happen soon, the Triggermen slowed progress to a crawl, staging regular sit-down strikes to further their billion-dollar scam and obtain a shelter they otherwise wouldn't be able to secure admittance to. They stashed away rich peoples' most treasured assets in advance, sat on their asses sipping beer while the bombs fell, and sealed off the vault leaving the pigs to die in nuclear hellfire with the rest of the unwashed. So long, and thanks for all the priceless art.

The East Coast Brotherhood are responsible for the Children of Atom becoming violent.
Upon seizing control of the Capital Wasteland, they helped expand Megaton, and they also took possession of the bomb. Both because it was a valuable resource/weapon for them, and they didn't want to have one of their larger cities to have a bomb in it, deactivated or not. The church took offense to the Brotherhood taking one of their most sacred relics. The Brotherhood then gave them an ultimatum 'Deal with it, or get shot.' So the Children of Atom began their pilgrimage, away from the loathsome Brotherhood. They learned the lessons the Brotherhood had taught them too, you can't trust people, and violence is the only way to get what you want.
  • Partially Confirmed. The Children of Atom became violent because of the Brotherhood of Steel, but because they saw them as degenerates who must be purged. There is so far no indication that the bomb in Megaton was taken away.
  • The Brotherhood would simply not leave a dangerous and valuable piece of pre-war technology just lying in a pool of water in an urban center that they claim. They go to war for less, so it's safe to assume the giant nuclear bomb has been relocated, or worse used.

The Elder Council of the Brotherhood are intentionally pushing Maxson to make the Brotherhood more militarized and martial.
They're planning on renewing the war with the NCR, and this time they're going to win it. Their plan is to have a large army march in from the East, led under the cult of personality of a singular leader. Then they can finally take out the wretched NCR and make up for their humiliating defeat earlier.
  • And no, they do not see any irony or parallels between themselves, and those jumped-up raiders who called themselves 'Caesar's Legion.' Also no, having that long, winding and *vulnerable* supply line back to the East is not a weakness and certainly nothing like the strategic mistakes made by the Legion.

The Institute's very fidgety about the possibilities of NCR-like groups because they're aware of the NCR.
Given their technological wizardry, it wouldn't be surprising if the Institute's been keeping tabs on what's happening across the continent in the West Coast. Over generations, they'd observe how the New California Republic not only rose up but also took on the likes of the Enclave, Brotherhood of Steel and Caesar's Legion...and won. They'd thus know what something like the NCR is capable of and how much this could screw them over should it happen closer to home. Naturally, this would frighten them to no end and further cause them to double down on making sure that doesn't happen the Commonwealth.
  • A NCR-like organization did exist in the Commonwealth, which tried to unite it like the NCR did for California, but it fell apart quickly due to the Institute replacing their leaders with Synths to crumble it fromn the inside. They're afraid of it because it already happened.
    • A related possibility, given Director's Recording #52, some of Father's dialogue and that one loading screen, is that the Institute originally encouraged the Commonwealth Provisional Government in part because they had heard of the NCR being formed in California (maybe even just the negotiations, if the 2180s dating for the CPG is accurate), but when things fell apart and it no longer seemed possible for the Institute to be a key part of an NCR-like entity, they cut their losses and began to oppose it as a potential threat to themselves.
  • Kellogg was a child in California when the NCR was first founded and traveled to the Commonwealth after some time spent under its government. It is not at all hard to believe he may have informed the Institute about the NCR, though he may be unaware of its status since he left over sixty years ago.

The Minutemen don't respect you because you're an unknown newcomer.
You can give them back the Castle and create a bazillion of settlements with living standards on par with Diamond City and yet Preston will still give all the hard work to you and only you. The Minutemen became known to the public a century before the events of the game and only hit a rough patch recently with the death of General Becker, the Quincy debacle and the loss of the Castle. The fact that out of the blue, a new General pops out makes them dubious, explaining why they treat you like crap. For them, you're at best a lucky guy/gal who managed to impress Preston enough, at worst an upstart who uses the Minutemen and their reputation as a cheap way to obtain undeserved power and respect. Even if you took on the Mirelurk Queen in the Castle by yourself, nothing prevents them to tell their buddies and the Commonwealth citizens that they did all the hard work while you were far away from the front line watching the whole thing. It will take months or maybe years (or a post-game DLC ala Broken Steel) before the Minutemen respect you.
  • This is actually very similar to what occurred with the Colonial Militias during the real-life Revolutionary War. While the "Minutemen" seem to be one big organization, they are actually pretty much made up of a conglomerate of different community militias (described as such in the in-game backstory). The have their own command structures, etc, and while they "technically" fall under the command of the Castle and the General (read: you) and work together when facing large-enough threats, they functionally have enough authority to tell you, and other Minutemen groups, to stuff it if they want to.
    • Actually, getting assigned hard work no matter how good of a job you do overall seems more like they know you're the best person for the job and give it to you for that reason, as opposed to disrespecting you.
    • Not to mention that while people do recognize Preston Garvey when he shows up, by introducing you as the new General when the Lone Wanderer goes to help settlements, your trusty friend is building up both your reputation and prestige. If you are going to actually lead the Minutemen, they must know you as both compassionate and capable. Running around the Commonwealth fixing problems will do the trick.

The Lone Wanderer has been dead for a decade.
It seems to me that the cleanest way to explain the Lone Wanderer's conspicuous absence from the Brotherhood's history is to say that he/she sacrificed themselves as in the original ending to Fallout 3, but the events of Broken Steel still occurred. Thus, the extent of the character's aid to the Brotherhood is much more limited than if they were to remain with them throughout their final campaign against the Enclave, and they've simply been written out. This also explains why the Brotherhood have gone down the path they have regardless of the player's behavior in Fallout 3: their character was no longer around to influence them.

Three Dog was the moral compass of the Brotherhood, and his death led the BoS to turn fascist.
When Lyons first came to the East Coast, first they conducted the Scourge on the Pitt, probably partly out of self-defense against the many dangers of the city, partly out of basic human empathy for the few surviving humans, and partly out of traditional desire to loot the place for tech. When they rolled into DC afterwards, they were greeted by GNR radio broadcasts from a righteous, omniscient DJ that criticized their brutality and selfishness while praising their having saved the children of the Pitt. As the operator of the only true public media and popular entertainment system, Three Dog is perhaps the single most influential person in the Capital Wasteland, and as the new kids on the block, the Brotherhood wanted to make a good impression on the Wastelanders and started to follow Three Dog's moralistic haranguing. Lyons was perhaps more receptive to these ideas and conditions than other leaders, but Three Dog was the only person really pushing for them, and so became the conscience that turned the Brotherhood from a bunch of heavily armored tech scavenger cultists into a humanitarian army, through simple positive reinforcement. Any players like me that felt kind of bullied or pressured into pursuing good karma solutions can understand how it happened.

Fast forward to F4, when the Brotherhood has essentially become Enclave Lite. If Three Dog were around, he would definitely be screaming his head off about ghoul oppression, military expansionism, android rights, political self-determination for the Commonwealth, etc. It's even possible that he was 'silenced' by the BoS for his outspokenness. Further, if Three Dog was still around, you'd expect the BoS grunts to occasionally be like 'That radio DJ sucks, man. God, I miss Three Dog.' The logical explanation would be that he was killed in the Super Mutant uprising that got Sarah Lyons killed and saw Arthur Maxson rise to power, or he left town with/was killed by whatever made the Lone Wanderer leave. Without his broadcasts constantly telling everyone who doesn't want to listen to violin solos and public-domain marching music to be good people and not be jerks, the Brotherhood reverted back to its original goals and mindset, though with many of Lyons' reforms in place.

The Wife Sole Survivor gained a Military Perk from the Husband Sole Survivor.
Since she maxed out his affection, she gained his companion perk; thus she gained his military abilities despite being a lawyer.
  • That's actually confirmed in-game if you try to get into the airport after the Prydwyn arrives, but without completing Fire Support. Nora trying to talk her way into the base will result in something along the lines of "I'm familiar with military installations, my husband was a soldier."

The Sole Survivor is actually a synth duplicate of the original.
Putting the "backup" back on ice after grabbing Shaun didn't go according to plan, but the cryogenics tech in the Vault included brain scans to see if the freezing damaged the brain or not. So when Father decided to try his little experiment, he had to build a synth of one of his parents, adding in the record of Kellogg killing the other from Kellogg's own memories. This is why the Sole Survivor adapts so quickly to the Wasteland; whether accidentally left in or intentionally added to help their odds in the Commonwealth, the Sole Survior woke up not just with their experience from their "real" life, but some self-defense and survival programming meant for any Gen 3 synth sent to the surface.
  • Wouldn't it make them forget about how to get into the Institute as soon as they learn how to do it due to the security protocols ? And where would be the real one ?

The Sole Survivor is actually a Gen IV Courser prototype.
This is not comprehensive, but wraps up a lot of plot holes so well I think it may have been an intended but abandoned plot.
  • Subjective evidence:
    • The pre-game Sanctuary 'memories' do not quite match the post game sanctuary. Minor color changes, pregame sanctuary has no names on mailboxes et al.
    • By the same token pregame memories of Shaun's kidnapping and your spouses murder do not quie match Kellogg's memories of the same events.
    • Lastly, you can use VATS prior to finding a pipboy.
  • Objective evidence:
    • There is a railroad observation post overlooking Vault 111, with a Railsign 'ally' marking.
    • It is common knowledge, confirmed by both PAM and Diamond City Radio, that Vault 111 is a 'dead' vault and it is unexpected to see someone escape.
    • Deacon 'stalks' the protagonist throughout the commonwealth prior to their finding the Railroad. Diamond City, Good Neighbor, and Bunker Hill are known instances.
  • Theory
    • There are aspects of the plot that don't hang together well. I think this is because it was never intended to hang together well.
    • The Top of the line Institute Synth is a Courser, but despite the Institutes expertise, they can't just 'manufacture' a courser, or even a synth that will definitely qualify as a courser. Out of all their synths they have to test them, train them, occasionally fail to train them, and get some small percentage of successful Coursers.
    • The Sole Survivor is a prototype Gev IV synth designed to 'upgrade itself' to become a courser with a more consistent system than the current 'training' system. The memories are intended (in the fashion of Bester editing Garibaldi's mind) to be a motivator that will drive this synth to hunt down the Institute via the Railroad, and then betray/destroy the Railroad as a second punch in case the Railroad survives the attack on the switchboard. Possibly with a side of 'And kill Kellogg' from Shaun.
    • Due to his position 'Patriot' found out about this attempt, and subtly sabotaged the programming/recall code, as well as getting word out to the Railroad that 'something' about a new synth being planted at Vault 111 was going on, but didn't know the full details, just that a synth was being planted to investigate the Railroad.
    • The Railroad gets this info from an escaped synth, and sets up a post. Deacon is on watch when the Switchboard is hit, and is going back to the switchboard to save friends when Vault 111 is opened when it becomes honest there are survivors despite their best efforts, and you're released. By the time Deacon returns the Synth Survivor is on the move, and Deacon is playing catchup.
    • By the time Deacon caught up the Railroads original 'recruit this 'supersynth' directly out of the vault' plan was flushed down the crapper and he is watching you steadily to see what happens as you start unlocking your internal governor over time and accessing your Courser IV built in 'I don't even need to breath under water if I don't feel like it' abilities. By the time you find the Railroad He feels confident that Patriots sabotage of your programming was effective and is quietly signalling Desmodena both that this is the synth Patriot warned us about' and 'I don't think she's controlled, but tell you what, let me see what happens it I take her to the switchboard an area swarming wit Institute Gen 1's.
    • This was a closely held secret — only Desmodena, Deacon, and (possibly) Carrington ever know. To prevent PAM from calculating things that would tip off the Institute that the Railroad was aware they never even told PAM, who still doesn't understand how someone crawled out of a known dead vault.

    • The idea that it was abandoned just because the game doesn't spell it out in all caps is, honestly nonsense. You don't even have to be some super special gen 4 synth because the Institute's gen-3 coursers are also trained and not just fabricated. There's a ton of minor tomato in the mirror moments in the base game and the main reason people don't want to admit it is the same reason people think whether synths (esp. gen 3s) are really people is a question the game asks rather than something it states quite clearly and loudly as fact. The literal only good rejoinder to it (recall codes) is easily addressed by the fact that Father' "mother" not only exists but is also out and about is a secret to a degree that Institute researchers aren't even aware of it, and the experiment relies on the same level of keeping you in the dark as with Shaun.

The Institute and Eugenics
An eventual goal of the Institute was to utilize Gen 3 Synths (perfect models of un-mutated human DNA) or their successors to inter-breed with wastelanders, with the intent of eliminating the various strains of mutation that have befallen the Commonwealth for over two centuries. "Mankind Redefined", indeed.
  • Jossed, it's stated that Gen 3 Synths are unable to procreate.

A DLC will feature the return of Intelligent Deathclaws
  • Please let this happen. We need a wizened old Goris talking about his glory days when he was still flexible enough to fit into The Alleged Car of holding and how he bravely held the line against Marcus's farts.
    • Jossed.

Vault 75 was actually the origin of the Gunners
  • Kids being breed for perfect genes as well as military proficiency. Gunners are found in the Vault in game. Gunners seem to have an endless supply of weaponry and the vault was noted to have a larger than usual armory. All of the pieces add up it just does not outright say it.
    • That seems to be the heavy implication. It also fits the training that the Vault 75 subjects were given that the Gunners, despite individual toughness and skill, seem to be less coordinated even than Raiders, with less tendency toward taking cover, laying down suppressive fire for each other, or fortifying the areas they occupy. The Gunners, unlike one would expect from a mercenary group actually modeled from (or founded by rogue/surviving members of) the US Army, seem to have little grasp of actual rank structure, with 'rank' awarded on individual skill and toughness rather than actual hierarchy, with higher-ranked members leading groups of lower-ranked ones.
The theme of the Fallout 4 DLC will be Learning from the Past
During the main game the factions have the problem or repeating past mistakes. The Minute Men and there horrible chain of command, The Brotherhood of Steel and returning to the old ways, and the Institute making the same mistakes that prewar scientists did.
  • Jossed. One DLC has you taking down the Mechanist and hunting Robobrains, a second DLC has you dealing with a volatile situation on an island between its inhabitants and Children of Atom with synths caught in the middle, a third has you assisting (and potentially sabotaging) a Vault Overseer with her experiments, while a fourth DLC has you become a Raider overboss in a theme park. Other “DLC” just give you craftable items.

Sarah Lyons was assassinated
by the West ChapterI mean, she dies very shortly after becoeming Elder (presumably continuing her father's ideals, and very shortly after she dies, only for Arthur (who is more likely to listen to them) is elected by them as the new Elder ? That can't be a coincidence.

Ron Perlman will return to give the epilogue for the final DLC.
Mirroring how Ulysses, not the Narrator, gave the Epilogue for Lonesome Road, the Sole Survivor will narrate each DLC except for the final one, which will have Perlman reclaim his place to close out this entry into the series.
  • None of the ending slides for the New Vegas {DLC}s were voiced by Perlman. Dead Money was narrated by Father Elijah, Honest Hearts's epilogue was narrated by Jed Masterson & Old World Blues' ending slides were voiced by Dr. Mobius. The fact that Ulysses gave the epilogue for Lonesome Road instead of Ron Perlman doesn't make it stand out from the others.

DLC Theories
  • A Sea Focused Expansion
    • Jossed
  • A Trip up North to Canada, now a frozen wasteland.
    • Jossed
  • A chance to clone your dead Spouse.
    • Jossed
  • The following will be playable according to the faction you sided with
    • New York Minute: Lead a squad of Minutemen deep into the NYC subway network to retrieve a yuge stash of pre war money. This will help make the greenback the official currency of the Commonwealth.
      • Jossed
    • Train Kept'a Rollin: Lead a Railroad team north to the Quebec border to retrieve the only working fusion core powered high speed locomotive and escort it back to Boston.
      • Jossed
    • Metal Meltdown: Lead a Brotherhood squad into a trog infested suburb of Pitt to retrieve the most powerful gun ever built — a gun that fires a jet of a molten amalgamation of iron, tungsten and uranium
      • Jossed
    • Diary of a Madman — recruit Jack Cabot into the Institute (or alternatively capture and detain Lorenzo there), discover an old diary Lorenzo kept of his travels to the alien city, then take a team of scientists and coursers there to explore that city to unlock its secret behind telekinesis.
      • Jossed
    • Companion specific DLC quests
      • Stove-Piped — Piper informs you about cooking stoves in your settlements that have been randomly exploding and killing settlers. Scavenge the stove's remains to pick up clues — and discover a deep dark secret that one of your settlements will go to any lengths to keep hidden.
      • Jossed
      • Dessi-Caited- Cait suddenly starts feeling dehydrated, starts losing bodily fluids at an alarming rate, her skin starts flaking off and drying up. Race against time to explore all Vaults in the Commonwealth and discover Braun's most sinister experiment yet — one that ties in all the experiments in 95, 81, 76, 112 and 111.
      • Jossed
      • The Princess Diary — Travel with MacCready to the Capital to visit his son — only to find the boy being "cared" for by MacCready's old rival Princess in Tenpenny Tower. Enter a world of lies, secrets and intrigue as Princess concocts a diabolical revenge on Lamplight's former mayor.
      • Jossed
      • Curie-osity — Curie began shaving flashbacks of her synth host's former life. Piece together those memories to uncover a diabolical Institute experiment involving that synth and the one known as Glory — one whose after effects must be stopped quickly before it eradicates the entire Commonwealth.
      • Jossed
      • Ghoul Interrupted — Travel with Hancock to Cape Cod to recruit a beachfront ghoul settlement into the Minutemen's cause.
      • Jossed
      • Doggone Robot — Wake up one day to find Dogmeat and Codsworth missing. The fact that both of them vanished at the same time tells you something is fishy. Solve the mystery by digging into your dead spouse's past — and uncover an old secret with far reaching consequences.
      • Jossed
      • Danse Macabre — Danse stumbles onto a skeleton and suddenly activates a hidden memory about the corpse he just found. You later discover that the corpse is of a human named Danse. Dig into the original Danse's past and discover the reason why his memories were implanted onto synth Danse. In the process, discover the sinister reason why Danse was originally sent to Rivet City.
      • Jossed
    • Now that the Creation Club is online and "quests" can be created to obtain certain items (power armor in particular), the following Powered Armor retrieval quests will be created.
      • Corvega Power Armor, which comes with a pre-installed jet pack, Kinetic legs that reduce AP cost and increased sprint speed. A newly inducted Atom Cat sends you to the Corvega plant to find this armor, but a clue at that plant leads you into the Glowing Sea to track down its now ghoulified thief.
      • Inquisitor Power Armor affiliated with the Children of Atom. Find a holotape on a random corpse in the Crater House or alternatively receive the quest and holotape from Grand Zealot Richter Richter and find this Powered Armor by taking the boat to the crater that once used to be New London Connecticut. Explore the Electric Boat Inc submarine production factory and find the Nuclear Damage Controlman's Armor — a power armor with built in lead lined pieces, Rad Scrubber helmet, and modified Tesla braces in its arms that release radiation blasts instead of electricity.
      • Gwinnett Restaurant Bouncer Power Armor which has the Gwinnett livery. Explore the brewery to get a location for this power armor, then head to a location called the Gwinnett Social Club west of Vault 111. Win their drink’n’brawl contest to be awarded this Power Armor and paint job.
      • Poseiden Energon Power Armor. Obtain holotapes located in all Poseiden facilities in the Commonwealth to get the Poseiden Energon mod for your power armor. This mod gives you the same invincibility that Colter’s power armor gives you in the Cola Cars arena, except that in this case, you must be at a settlement and be plugged in to a fusion generator via a special craftable port.

Shoddycast's "The Storyteller" will be the theme of a future DLC
If the Shoddycast can gain support from original voice actors, it wouldn't be a stretch to consider the series being translated into Fallout 4. The main quest line would feature the storyteller seeking support on his quest to save NCR Ranger Tanner from the Vault-Dweller Synth, with sidequests modeled after the New Vegas mod in finding certain books or holotapes to gain access to stories narrated by the storyteller, which are videos from the Shoddycast channel. The Storyteller and ED-NA will act as a functional dual-companion; both can be talked to, traded with, etc, but ED-NA cannot take orders or be separated from the Storyteller. Should also include ED-NA's hidden 3-Dog lines, an NCR Ranger outfit, and maybe even Daisy the K9000 as a modifiable weapon
  • Jossed

A DLC will eventually make it possible for the Survivor to start up a country in the Commonwealth.
Consider it the logical conclusion to the existing mechanic of building and forming relationships with settlements. Especially given how certain factions like the Minutemen already lay down the foundations for an organized state to emerge in the Commonwealth. Whether it follows down the same path as the NCR, recreate America in the Enclave's image or something else altogether is up to you.
  • Jossed

The next DLC will be a perverse reversal of Broken Steel
In which this time, it's the East Coast Brotherhood that's on the warpath and preparing to aid the Lost Hills Elders fight the NCR one final time, with the Commonwealth caught in between. And it's up to the Survivor whether to aid the Brotherhood, appeal to Elder Maxson's memories of Lyons or compromise their "crusade."
  • Jossed

The male Sole Survivor or alternatively Nate was the soldier that brought down the Chinese guns at Anchorage and killed Jingwei
This explains how they were able to secure a space in Vault 111. His actions made him a national hero, but General Chase's spinning of the events to puff himself up would have angered Nate/male survivor enough to make the general end his military career. And as a final fuck you, the general made sure that he ended up as a vault test subject instead of being part of a control group. This would all but guarantee that something bad happens to him.

The Denizens of Vault 75 will Play a Role in DLC
Vault 75 was an experiment to create genetically superior humans via subjecting children to indoctrination regarding "Uptopland" and combat testing for years, then harvesting the genetic material of the top-scorers and culling all the subjects upon reaching 18. Notes hint that, since the researchers had to occasionally recruit and train new researchers from the vault population, this led to an uprising; by 2087, the vault is abandoned and being ransacked by the Gunners. It's possible that some of the genetically-modified residents survived the circumstances that led to the Vault's abandonment; and having been indoctrinated regarding the dangers of Uptopland, elected to carve out an Empire above. Think Khan and the rest of his crew from Star Trek.
  • Jossed

1st, 2nd and 3rd Generation Synths are Non-sentient by Design
The first true artificial intelligence in the Fallout Universe came about in 2059, though it's growth was halted soon thereafter because of memory limitations. In turn, it was followed by the ZAX series of supercomputers produced by Vault-Tec, who then developed self-aware capabilities some years later as an emergent property in their programming. The CIT predecessor to the Institute thrived in the technocentric Pre-War world. It is reasonable to assume they would have had intimate knowledge of those projects, from a research standpoint. Given their ~210 years of independent research following the War, it is also reasonable to assume that had they been trying to create an AI, they would've succeeded. However, if a Synth's primary purpose, particularly a 3rd Generation one, is to infiltrate surface society, being actually self-aware and sentient would be largely irrelevant to the task at hand, only appearing to be so is necessary. Given that the first AI created in 2059 had its growth stopped because of memory constraints, it is also logical to assume that true AI would be too cumbersome on hardware that needs to mobile to bother endowing a Synth with it.

There is the possibility that the Institute is lying about their intentions, but there is reason to believe them when they claim otherwise. Enter Nick Valentine. As opposed to all other Synths, 3rd Generation or otherwise, Nick's programming isn't the result of the Institute in its present incarnation, but rather the result of a Pre War experiment. How is that relevant? If you get Nick's affinity up high enough, he'll mention that he first came online in a garbage heap, meaning the Institute never turned him on or tried to operate him normally. They succeeded in transferring a data copy of a person's mind into a Synthetic body...and then just disposed of it? Why go through the trouble? Because sentience is something the Institute is deliberately trying to avoid. Before even turning Nick on and judging for themselves how he was, they scrapped him the moment they realized he might be more than they had intended. It was only good fortune on Nick's part and bad oversight from the Institute that he came on at all, something which is certainly in line with the Institute's MO.

  • Jossed. In the Far Harbor DLC, you meet an older prototype Gen-2 synth named Di-Ma who predates Nick and is quite smart. In fact he even has a Manipulative Bastard side to him.
The Writers Were Planning The East Coast Brotherhood Of Steel's Pseudo Face–Heel Turn All Along
A young Arthur Maxson can be found in the Citadel back in Fallout 3, and he really seems to serve no purpose there except to add to the lore. His crush on Sarah Lyons is established in that game, and her death in the intervening years seems to be what prompted his change in attitude. The general opinion among the fandom is that the East Coast Chapter's changing attitude was brought on by a bunch of Fallout purists complaining about the changes Lyons made to the Brotherhood, but it's actually part of a story arc where it starts out as the good guys and fighting the Enclave then going on to become just as bad as people they fought. It may even turn out to be an Hourglass Plot, with the Enclave (or at least a faction of it) becoming the heroes.

  • Perhaps Arcade and some like minded supporters?
The Lone Wanderer will be in one of the DLC
The Sole Survivor encounters a mysterious ally with no name or an obvious alias in one of the DLC. Said ally will be covered in full body armor that hides everything about them (possibly power armor) and will help the Sole Survivor in the DLC mission. After the mission is over and your ally has walked into the sunset will someone mention that you just met the Lone Wanderer.
  • Jossed

One DLC will be a Broken Steelesque continuation
To explore the ramifications of the Sole Survivor's choice , each faction will have their own series of quests that show their goals for the wastes, while the Sole Survivor themselves cn try to change to something else to their liking. Seems like a good reason why they would be made Director, General and Elder of the Institute, Minutemen and the BoS is cut content, so that the Sole Survivor can take control and change these factions for the better, or worse.
  • Jossed

Vault 111 had a secret secret research purpose.
On the surface, Vault 111's hidden research purpose is one of the most straightforward and obvious we've seen — studying the effects of prolonged cryogenic containment on unaware subjects. However, while that's certainly the kind of thing Vault-Tec would do, it's interesting and worth noting that Vault-Tec have set a seemingly rather short mandatory shelter period of 180 days, after which the Vault is to be evacuated (unless an All-Clear signal is sent out earlier). To this end, they've vaguely asserted that the monitoring of Vault 111's subjects will be conducted remotely (something which kind of hinges on the people outside Vault 111 not being reduced to radioactive dust, as is likely in the event of an atomic war), and have only provided a limited amount of rations for strictly that period of time. All of this would seem to mean opening the vault while radiation levels outside were still likely to be lethally high (as the Overseer frets) or staying inside and facing graduation starvation. While this could all just be ignorance, hubris and arrogance operating on the part of those involved (all of which, granted, are also not beyond Vault-Tec), it wouldn't be a Vault-Tec joint if there wasn't also some kind of unnecessarily complex and callous social experiment (read: opportunity for psychological torture) operating on some level as well. Vault-Tec are also not entirely immune to turning their own employees into guinea pigs either. Ergo, it's possible that Vault 111 also had some kind of secret research purpose unknown even to the Overseer, likely something to do with how long it would take Vault employees, facing a desperate choice between death by starvation and death by exposure to a radioactive wasteland, to either turn to mutiny or authoritarianism.
  • This entire concept is implied throughout the series. The vaults were supposedly to gather data to help create slower-than-light Generation Ships when the Earth finally dried up. That the nuclear war came, and the Vaults miraculously were built to-specification, was a surprise to all but a few.

We will receive an Oceanic DLC


Oceanside settlements can build docks, which allow for the construction of several unique vessels. The base hulls are:

  • Ramshackle raft

  • Ramshackle barge

  • Ramshackle yacht

  • Rebuilt Tugboat

  • Rebuilt Cargo ship

  • Rebuilt Speedboat

  • Rebuilt Cruiser

  • Rebuilt Battleship

  • Enclave Patrol Boat

  • Enclave Submersible

  • Enclave Destroyer

  • BoS Corvette

  • Institute Barge

  • Railroad Stealth Submersible

  • Minutemen repurposed USS Constitution

These vessels can be modified in regards to rooms, decor and weapons. These ship must be crewed with settlers. Ships can also be built and assigned tasks for the AI. These can include

  • Hunting Pirates

  • Scavenging

  • Whaling

  • Trading


  • Scar- Intelligent Deathclaw

  • Sarah Lyons- Human Mercenary in early stages of Ghoulification.

  • Vincent Chase- Enclave Super Soldier

  • Artemis- Enclave AI

  • Ishmael- Raider captain

  • Sharptooth- ???????


The eldest son of Karloff, and the closest thing the reef has to a mechanic, Scar is an intelligent deathclaw. Scar's young have not retained his intelligence, and when his path crosses the sole survivor Scar enlists their help in finding a way to prevent them from becoming a threat to the reef. In combat scar uses a Shoulder mounted Gatling laser, plus his own personal strength to fight.

Companion Perk: "Savagery" Gain enhanced Melee and Unarmed damage and crit chance.

Companion Quest: Find a way to save Scar's cubs.

Rewards: Scar's perk


The former Brotherhood of Steel Elder, her vertibird was shot down over the potomac river. Presumed dead by the brotherhood, Lyons was found by a group of slavers and sold to the Pitt. After 6 months working in the Pitt, Lyons won her freedom in the arena, and left the city behind. She wandered the wastes for 7 years, before settling down in Diamond City. The once mighty elder of the brotherhood, can now be found in the Dugout Inn. Intensive radiation exposure has begun to turn Lyons in to a ghoul. Lyons can be hired on as a mercenary. Lyons uses a plasma rifle as a weapon.

Companion Quest: Find a radiation treatment to stop Sarah's ghoulification. Whether or not she gets it is up to you.

Companion Perk:

Human Sarah gives the "Connections" perk which grants better deals on buying and selling

Ghoul Sarah gives the "Radiation Immunization" perk which lowers the health damage caused by Rad exposure.


Artemis is an Enclave advanced assaultron AI. Assigned to you (Or hacked to obey you), Artemis uses standard assaultron gear in combat. Aside from being given a somewhat sarcastic personality and being incapable of disliking/liking your actions, Artemis can also be given a Sentry Bot chassis to inhabit.

Companion Perk: None

Companion Quest: None


An Enclave Super Solder, descendant of General Chase. He volunteered for enclave F.E.V experiments to make super soldiers. While not on the level of Frank Horrigan, he's still a super mutant in power armor. Chase accompanies the player should they choose to side with the Enclave. Chase is equipped with a set of unique Power Armor, permanently grafted onto his body. He also carries a Heavy Incinerator cannon.

Personal Quest: None.

Companion Perk: "Last man standing" If your companion has been downed, gain increased HP and AP regen.


A Member of the Longshore Barons raider gang, he'll accompany you on your travels if he is impressed. He captains a warship, and lost his leg, arm and eye to a great ghoul whale: Ol'Peg, and bears a grudge to this day. Uses a spear gun in combat

Companion Quest: Find Ol'peg and kill him

Companion Perk: Captain On Deck. Increases the effectiveness of your Ship's crew.


Sharptooth is an Enigma. He/She just walked into goodneighbor one day. It looks like a feral ghoul, emaciated and elongate. But on closer inspectation, it isn't. Sharptooth has a Fanged maw, sharp claws, it's eyes are red and it seems to emit cold. It's a confirmed cannibal, and is shifty even for goodneighbor. Sharptooth is good conversation though, and if persuaded can join your cause.

Companion Quest: None

Companion Perk: "People Eater" gain a temporary +1 increase to all special stats after consuming a human.


THE REEF is a town built on a bunch of wrecked ships. Home to a small pack of Intelligent Deathclaws led by Karloff and a few other settlers. If joined, will start uniting settlements under their flag. Currently in open hostilities with the institute and the enclave, while still bearing old grudges against the minutemen. Cannot coexist with the Enclave, Longshore Barons, Minutemen or Institute.

LONGSHORE BARONS, a group of raiders who have fallen on hard times. The Longshore Barons tend to model themselves off pirates, and are led by Tren the Mighty, (Who you must Usurp) the player may join up with the Longshore Barons to rebuild their success and build encampments. Can't coexist with the minutemen, the reef, railroad or brotherhood.

THE ENCLAVE are in their eyes, the last remaining americans. Following a crippling series of defeats in California, D.C and Chicago, the enclave have spent 7 years restoring an old US dreadnought to working order and capturing slaves, to mutate into grunts for their army. They can coexist with the institute and the Longshore Barons.


Lockjaw Dolphins are deadly predators that inhabit the Boston bay. They mostly attack swimmers and small fish. Harmless to mariners. The meat is surprisingly tasty, and thus fetches a fair price.

Sawblade Fish are mutant Mako Sharks. Their jaws rend their prey apart and these fish are insanely fast. They will also take chunks out of smaller boats. Their meat doesn't sell as well as the Lockjaw's but their Jaws are insanely valuable to the more privileged Wastelanders. Consider them the deathclaws of the sea

Ghoul Whales are the toughest thing in the ocean. The outer shell is resistant to even fat man explosions and the immense amount of strength they put into their charges can devastate boats. The meat is incredibly rare, and sells extremely well. Considered a giant enemy.

Some unique characters you will encounter are:

Santa Claws — deathclaws that reside in the North Pole.
BeoWolves — mutated grey wolves.
Neptunus Wrecks — a super mutant behemoth that developed gills and lives in shipwrecks on the ocean floor, dragging sea faring victims down to feed.
River Reavers — feral ghoul Reavers that live in the Amazon mouth.
Bear Sterns — Very stern looking Yao Guais from Manhattan.

  • Jossed

There will be a Lovercraftian-themed DLC
It will take the player to nearby Providence, Rhode Island, birthplace of H. P. Lovecraft, and will give greater context to Dunwich Borers the way Point Lookout did with the Dunwich Building.
  • Jossed, although Far Harbor does wear its Lovecraft influences on its sleeve...

A DLC will be a Whole Episode Flashback to the Sino-American war
The player can continue to be their sole survivor, who if male is in the 108th Infantry or if female in the CIA or something similar. 'Nate' will be given a mission to rescue an American agent captured by the Chinese, while 'Nora' will be agent in quest chain having to break out and deliver time sensitive intelligence to American command. It will be their first meeting.
  • Jossed

There will be a Silver Shroud DLC as an Alternate Reality Episode
With the SS as the Silver Shroud, their LI as the Mistress of Mysteries, and their companions appearing as members of the Unstoppables.
  • Partially confirmed. The Mechanist DLC features Silver Shroud enemy The Mechanist, and the Sole Survivor can interact with them in-character if encountered while wearing the Silver Shroud Armor, and Nuka World has some Silver Shroud dialogue lines.

Ron Perlman's narrator will become an Ascended Extra
Anchorman seen at the beginning survived as a Ghoul and has been chronicling the history of the Wasteland, kinda like Shoddycast's Stroyteller. Perhaps he even picked up "War Never Changes" from the Sole Survivor.

Nora is/was a member of JAG
  • Or a similar military law service. Explaining why she's intimately familiar with firearms and command structurenote  but not to the degree that Nate was. As to why her dialogue refers to Nate as "the soldier" she might have retired, or been discharged when she got pregnant, or perhaps military culture in the Fallout universe is far more divided and dismissive of other branches.
    • Correct that all non-Combat Arms-branch soldiers go to the same Basic Training which teaches them the same marksmanship, land navigation, and other military basics. That training would definitely explain why Nora is capable of operating weapons efficiently even at level 1. It's quite possible she was Army CID or a Regiment-level (as the Fallout US Army seems to have a Regiment-based rather than Brigade Combat Team-based structure, as it did in the '50's) legal advisor; which could also explain how she met Nate. As to why their proficiencies are equal on the outset (when Combat Arms soldiers like Nate receive further training, and additional training from their units in addition to combat experience) simply seems to be a gameplay mechanic, and, lore-wise, Nate would be the combat-focused, power-armor-using fighter archetype while Nora would be more the smooth-talking, bartering and possibly sneaky diplomat/thief archetype. She probably just refers to Nate as "the soldier" simply because in the '50's even moreso than in the modern Army, Infantrymen and other combat personnel were considered the "real soldiers", in addition to the listed possibilities.
    • Nora is descended from Rabb and MacKenzie
Mr. Burke was a Synth.

  • Back in Fallout 3, we were introduced to one Mr. Burke. A creepy, cool, dangerous individual who worked for Mr. Tenpenny and tried to get the Lone Wanderer to blow up Megaton. Since we know Megaton didn't get blown up, it stands to reason that Burke is most likely canonically dead, but that's aside from the point. The point being, we didn't know anything about Burke. His past, where he came from. Even Tenpenny said that he just kind of showed up one day. Burke being an escaped, mind-wiped Synth makes a lot of sense in that regard; we know from Gabriel that not all mind-wiped Synths turn out good. It's possible that Burke is the result of a mistake or glitch in the mind wiping process that turned him into a sociopath.
  • Or hell, Burke might actually be an Institute Synth sent down to the Capital Wasteland to help cause chaos there and make sure that any relatively "local" threats are either neutralized or converted to the Institute's cause! After all, while we now know that it isn't canon now, Mr. Burke might have succeeded in getting Megaton — the second-largest settlement in the entire Capital Wasteland, where the Wasteland Survival Guide, a valuable book that would help teach Wastelanders to organize and generally be more of a threat to organizations like the Institute — wiped off the map. That would also remove some dangerous Pre-War tech (Megaton's infamous bomb) from being further studied and perhaps even reverse-engineered by the residents of Megaton.

Mama Murphy didn't overdose.
So if anyone didn't guess Mama Murphy does eventually die if you keep feeding her drug habit so you can glean tidbits from the future, not really a spoiler since the game pretty clearly spells it out in the beginning, but it wasn't from a drug overdose.

She would have seen that coming, infact she was looking out for it. What she wasn't looking out for was the heart failure that got her when a dose of psycho made her already weak heart try to go into overdrive, after all psycho is a stimulant and Murphy complained fairly often about her heart skipping a beat or stuttering after the Buffout and Med-X doses. Her last words — "I should have seen this coming" —all but say it, she was on the look out for things that might end her but looked in the wrong place avoiding overdoses but missing the possible heart failure.

  • If she died from heart failure due to Psycho, how is that NOT death by drug overdose?

The Sole Survivor is a psyker.
Their ability to use the Animal Friend, Wasteland Whisperer, and Intimidation perks has nothing to do with their charisma, but their psychic ability (specifically, mind control) uses their natural charisma to turn them, in the minds of their targets, a radiant god/dess on Earth, one that the former enemies are willing to betray their allies for. That's why they fight each other when all other enemies are dead: They're in such a frenzy of trying to please you that they turn on the competition.

Your son is the synth boy at the end
Shaun is dying at the end of the game. He got the institute scientists to create a synth version of himself as a child for some (possibly unrelated) reason. He may have been looking into uploading his mind into a synth body but because of time constraints (his worsening condition, or you destroying the institute) meant he had to use the synth child body. Alternatively, he wanted to use the synth child body. Perhaps so he could actually be 'raised' by his mother, or as a means to escape the institutes destruction, or for another, worse reason. This means the synth boy at the end isn't just a creation, it is/has the memories of the adult shaun.

Father is not Shaun
The real Shaun died during the experiments to create the synths. Another man took over the Institute and became "Father", and realized that claiming to be Shaun would be a great way to get you on their side and you'd never forgive them if you knew the truth. So he set up a Batman Gambit so you'd find the Institute where he'd claim to be Shaun.

The institute isn't behind the kidnap and replacing... the Railroad is
Gen 3 Synths are created/grown using dna of living subjects, then heavily enhanced with cybernetics.When these synths escape, the Railroad helps them integrate into society by killing the subject whose dna they were born from and then having the synth take their place. The Railroad doesn't view this as unethical because the railroad is in fact made up of synths, and they plan to take control of the commonwealth.
  • Straight-up most EpilepticTree I've seen on this page. Reasonably certain it's jossed somewhere in-game too. Points for creativity, at least.

Cait is the daughter of Colin Moriarty from Fallout 3
Cait says her parents didn't give a damn about her and raised her to sell as a slave. Cait is 26 in 2287 which means she was sold into slavery in 2279, two years after the events of Fallout3. Both Cait and Moriarty are Irish. We know Moriarty is a gigantic asshole who only really cares about making money and reigning over his own little fiefdom in Megaton. We also know that the Capital Wasteland has slavers based out of Paradise Falls. Moriarty could have had a wife we never got to see and Cait could have been their unseen 16 year old daughter at the time of Fallout 3. Moriarty might have seen a headstrong teenage Irish daughter as a liability if he couldn't coerce her into prostituting herself to make him money, so selling her to slavers would have made perfect sense to him.
  • Or perhaps we have seen her mother: Nova. Red hair, sassy, promiscuous, potentially bisexual, and works for Moriarty? She'd be the perfect candidate for Cait's mother. Sure, Nova would've been nine or ten when Cait was born...but we all know that Moriarty isn't exactly the most honorable person in the Capital Wasteland.
  • Jossed by her own admission that she killed her parents.
    • That doesn't actually Joss the theory, unless there's something in game I'm unaware of that indicates that Moriarty's still alive. Cait killing her parents would have taken place between games, and Bethesda isn't Bioware — they're perfectly willing to select a canon for their games if necessary. We know this because the Lone Wanderer did officially side with the Brotherhood and that they officially did not nuke Megaton. With that mentality in mind, Bethesda's under no obligation to honor the playthroughs of people who murdered Colin in Fallout 3, so the fact that he can be killed doesn't make this WMG impossible.

The Factions in Fallout 4 are modeled after the Endings to Mass Effect 3.
Unmarked SpoilersThe three main factions represent the different options for the Reapers and synthetic life as a whole in the end of Mass Effect 3; Fallout 4 even uses the term "Synths", just like the Mass Effect series, and the dialogue wheel is clearly modeled after Mass Effect's.
  • Destroy: Represented by the Brotherhood of Steel, traditionally the Big Good faction of the Fallout series (only now becoming more grey) who believe Synths are a scourge that cannot be reasoned with, and must be completely destroyed, condemning even the Synths in their midst. Similar to how Admiral Anderson, one the BigGoods of Mass Effect, is representative of the Destroy option.
  • Control: The Institute, a group similar to the Enclave, and differentiated from Cerberus by little more than a logo. The face of the Institute is the Old Man, who is an authoritative, mythical figure similar to The Illusive Man in terms of Chessmaster and Manipulative Bastard roles. They want to control Synths and tell you that you will gain the reigns and take power, but functionally that does not seem to be the case…
  • Synthesis: The Railroad is full of sympathetic figures, and has a level of personal and emotional appeal that you do not see anywhere near as much of in the other two factions. There are more characters who you meet out in the world who support the Railroad, and on the surface it seems to be the more straightforward "Good" option. However, the Railroad's goals are not necessarily practical: they do not manage to save the facilities or research of the Institute and so the Synths they have managed to save will be unable to repair themselves or survive long-term as they wear down, and they completely mindwipe the synths they do "rescue" from the Institute. Also there is no way to force the fearful people of the Commonwealth to stop fearing synths, so those who are "free" may constantly live in fear of discovery. Their lack of a single leader is reflective of council systems of both Quarians and Geth. The Railroad's act of freeing synths is parallel making peace between the Quarians and Geth in Mass Effect, and how while that first step is a clear and moral choice, the final step of that process (mass conversion), is dubious if not an inflicted lack of choice.

The settlement construction is due to the Pip-boy containing a GECK.
You find it on the body of someone who was headed outside. You then use a workshop once you're topside, and then have access to turning raw materials into useful objects, and turning objects into raw materials, along with a special interface. As you progress, you can link more workbenches up with just a single settler and Brahmin going between them to give access to the full pool of materials. That implies a data link, rather than transfer of materials in bulk. In addition, you create things instantly; no construction time, no labour required, and only basic materials. That's a lot like how the GECK was explained in Fallout 2. Perhaps the GECK was meant to interface with a pip-boy, and the one for Vault 111 was hooked up to one with the intent to use it.

A future DLC will permit Vault construction ala Fallout Shelter
FO4 supports/requires base construction, and the art assets are already in use. Several mods have adapted Institute building materials. Further, in one section of the Institute, an extension is being built by earthmovers, with raw earth being removed to form a cave that rooms are being into. Technology, techniques, and materials from Vault 81 could be used to create new Vaults or expand existing ones while staying lore-friendly.
  • Confirmed, well, kind of. With the new Vault-Tec Workshop coming up, it firmly puts this in the confirmed.

The Player represents a guardian angel
So we already know ghosts, psychics and Public Domain Cosmic Horrors are tangible entities in Fallout. In Fallout 2, Sulik is protected by his grandfather's ghost. note  The key part of this is Sulik's cryptic ramblings are correct more often than not; often enough to propose the The Cuckoolander Was Right. So what if the player is a similar entity? I mean, it's not like the Sole Survivor lost someone very close following a Trauma Conga Line.... Oh, right.

Fallout 4 is an Unfinished Game
Upon the release of Fallout 4, Bethesda Softworks also released a season pass DLC which is a one-time buy for every DLC they ever make for Fallout 4. I can't think of a single company that would offer a deal like this when it could cost them $100's of dollars from every DLC they publish in the long run. However, it has been noted that most of Fallout 4's questing content has to do with Radiant Quests compared to the story-based quests of previous installments. Then the first DLC is a simple quest chain with a new crafting expansion. Then the next DLC was just more stuff to go in your work bench. That got me thinking. Bethesda isn't Obsidian: They ship games on time for the most part. My theory is that Bethesda had a release date in mind and then they HIT that release date, in spite of a lot of content being left out. As both an excuse to put the stuff they wanted to put in the game from the beginning and a (sort of) apology to players for not being able to get everything in the game before their release date, they put out the Season Pass. It's with this in mind that I think that end-of-DLC Fallout 4 will be a VASTLY different beast than the vanilla FO4 — because it'll be finished and have everything that Bethesda wanted to put in it from the start and more.
  • Jossed. Thoroughly. Season passes for DLC are standard practice these days. Every game with DLC has them. It's not indicative of a game being finished or not.
  • To further elaborate and educate the OP, the concept was introduced by Rockstar with LA Noire, five years before Fallout 4's release. It' generally viewed as smart business as it encourages people who may not have bought all the dlc's to take advantage of the discount, and it generates revenue before the DLC's release.

The Far Harbor DLC will place the Institute's goal of controlling synths in a whole new positive light
We already had the Automatron DLC warn us about the disastrous effects of naively repurposing technology, without digging deeper into how and why that technology was constructed. At the end of the DLC, you are essentially acting like a courser — except with Robobrains instead of synths. The Railroad already has an Unintentionally Unsympathetic vibe to them, with their willing to sacrifice umpteen human lives just to protect or free synths. Furthermore, we know that synths are not quite human, since they don't need emotions to function, can't procreate, don't age, and are capable of cold calculation. Establishing a settlement full of them will be revealed in this DLC as a nascent threat that can soon spiral out of control if not nipped in the bud. And that makes the Institute's policy of containing and controlling them, suddenly seem like a wise decision, while the Railroad's unleashing of these synths seem like Not Quite the Right Thing.
  • Partially Confirmed. DiMA's willingness to kill and replace inconvenient humans with synths is certainly horrifying, and his ability to simply delete the memories means he can do so again and again with no mental repercussions. To be fair, he does accept that it was wrong if you push him to, but he will also repeat his actions if you do not.
  • Oh come on. Arcadia replacing humans is the exact same thing the Institute was doing and the Institute felt no shame in doing so. It's beyond ridiculous the lengths this fandom goes to in order to justify and excuse the Institute. They are bad guys. Just get over it.
  • Far Harbor does arguably put the Institute in a more sympathetic light, but not in regards to their desire to control synths. Rather, it shows the temptation to use synth replacements to achieve even benevolent goals. Just one more replacement, and everything will be better... and suddenly it become easy to see how the Institute could end up where they are in 2287 even if they set out to salvage things after the collapse of the CPG with the best of intentions.

The Final DLC will involve a confrontation with The Sole Survivors Spouse...
...or a copy/shadow/synth of them. Said encounter will feature different dialogue depending on the players actions, such as if they sided with the Institute vs Brotherhood of Steel, or how they've approached the DLC stories. The Spouse will always criticize the Sole Survivor, regardless of their choices, allowing the player to perform a Shut Up, Hannibal! in reply.
  • Sadly Jossed

There's going to be another Synth Companion at some point of the DLC
Considering the strange modified Synth we see in the trailer of Far Harbor, there's a possible chance that we'll have another one. If true, then the next question is whether its a First or Second Generation Synth, something similar to Nick, another Third Generation or a modified Synth.
  • Jossed

Nuka World DLC has something to do with a mysterious Nuka Cola theme park or something else entirely.
There's three ways we can go about this:

1. This DLC is centered around an Amusement Park planned by the company as a form of promotion to buy Nuka Cola to support some sort of charity... on the surface. In reality, the funds are used to support the military at the time with more weapons and, of course, more Nuka Cola, in the form of an experimental batch not unlike the Quantam flavour, as a form of testing without having to actually pay. The side effects when they become ghouls would be... rather peculiar to many.

  • Confirmed

2. It's Nuka Cola's way of making a unique amusement park partnering with Vault-Tec... Whether they actually do something to the rides everytime is something left for even more speculation.

3. Another incomplete Vault, this time the project is something Nuka Cola related... Like spiking the Nuka Cola so that anyone who drinks it becomes addicted to it for some reason. The project was to suppoesedly oversee what would happen if someone tampered with the formula of Nuka Cola presented... and then spike it with something less desirable, like say, a form of FEV. Essentially, the secret is what would happen if a unique strain of FEV made contact via less practical ways, starting with Nuka Cola.

  • Partially confirmed, there wasn't a 'vault' per-se, but there is a private bunker for the founder and a few scientists.

4. A Nuka Cola bottle manufacturing plant, with the amusement park being a sinister mechanism to provide bonded labor for the plant in Pre War times. The park hood winks patrons in initially with door prizes, then tempts them to raise the stakes for more prizes by playing Unwinnable by Design carnival games, until they are so in debt that they have to work it off at the plant. Alternatively, they let kids ride on broken down equipment with a shiny coat of paint, then stick the parents with a ginormous bill when a ride breaks down again, forcing either the parent or child into bonded labor. These bonded labor era are now a bunch of putrid glowing ones, waiting to be let loose by someone who opens the doors to the plant. The raiders are fighting each other to gain access to this plant, so they can mass produce unlimited amounts of bottle caps.

  • The primary plot of Nuka World is that you become the ruler of a loose alliance of raiders and must take over the park for them.

The Player Character is NOT a synth
Okay, this is actually a bit grounded for "wild mass guessing", but let's look at some of the facts and assume Survival Mode is canon difficulty, namely that the player character NEEDS to sleep, eat, and drink. They are susceptible to radiation poisoning and diseases. And despite what options the game didn't allow us, the player character can reference plenty of things from well before the bombs dropped. Lastly, there's the fact that Father, or anyone at the Institute, never once tries to hit the reset code, namely when you're attacking The Institute itself and about to blow it up. (which would seem like a pretty good time to conclude the experiment is NOT going well)
  • Alternatively, maybe the player is a synth, the most realistic and quite honestly poorly thought-out synth ever made.
    • Not necessarily. Gen-3 synths are essentially human, the only difference being the chip in their head. They do need to eat, drink, and sleep (as implied by G3!Curie and Danse sleeping, as well as people discovering they're synths via "strange dreams"). Given their human nature, diseases should still impact them and you are only informed of radiation poisoning through the PIP-boy acting as a dosimeter. The memories can easily be implanted (A3-21/Harkness, G3/Curie, M7-97/Danse, etc.). If the SS were saved by the Railroad, the Institute wouldn't be aware of their identity, or (more possibly) Synth!SS was deployed before Father became director and no one is around to remember.
      • They don't need to eat / drink / sleep, they have a simulated desire to. One of the Robotics members mentions it in his introductory spiel. And that bit about rad poisoning and the PIP-Boy is frankly ridiculous — you get tangible health penalties from it as well. Not to mention that even if the SS is a rescued synth, the sheer number of logical leaps and dumb decisions that would be required for the main story to play out the way it does would make it one of the most absurd plots.
    • It's pretty clear that the player character is not a synth on account of recall codes. Once the Institute realizes that the Sole Survivor has started to work against them, it shouldn't take a genius to use the recall code and shut them down permanently.

Nuka World Location
Where would this DLC take place? There's several possible locations, but the most likely general location is somewhere in the New England Commonwealth. It could be in:
  • Former Maine, the Mainland.
  • Former Rhode Island.
  • Former New Hamsphire.
  • Former Vermont.
  • Former Connecticut.
  • The West of former Massachusetts.
    • Confirmed

The Glowing Sea is Framingham
Framingham was mentioned to be completely destroyed in the Great War. Framingham in real life is west of Boston and the in game map of the area has the Glowing Sea coincide with the easternmost part of the Framingham proper. Natick Banks (Natick in real life) borders Framingham, and Framingham is a mixed industrial/residential area in real life.

Vault 81 was originally intended as the Tutorial
That's why Austin, after showing you the Hydroponics Lab, tells you to hurry up and starts running. It would be the point where the game tells you how to swap from walking to running, and the locations he brings you would be very important for a new character to know (Shops, Haircut, Doctor) to survive the Wasteland. You either started as a Vault 81 resident with no backstory other than the vault you grew up in, or you started as an outsider who just bargained there way inside, giving you Fallout New Vegas's more open ended backstory.
  • This is also borne out by Vault 81's location: there's Oberland and Graygarden to the north, Hangman's to the East as starting settlements. The Vault is near the exact center of the map and has Diamond City as the Megaton equivalent very close, much like Fallout 3.

Whatever Happened to the Lone Wanderer?
The Lone Wanderer left the Capital Wasteland during the 10-year-gap, and with them went their companions (explaining why Star Paladin Cross is absent from Fallout 4). He/she became the leader of the Brotherhood Outcasts (being on good terms with them after Operation Anchorage) and relocated them to Mothership Zeta, which they could use to scour other regions of the Wasteland for tech. And with all the captured alien weapons and other tech, plus all the surviving alien workers and people still frozen in cryotubes aboard ''Zet;;a that they could free and recruit, they'd be able to boost their dwindling forces significantly. In addition, the Lone Wanderer's past adventures would give them access to the Pitt's factories and the weapons and food/drinks of Point Lookout, giving them a efficient work force and supplies to help sustain them without interfering with the Lyons/Maxson Brotherhood.

Chase is a prototype Courser, which originally didn't have tracking chips
Chase going missing might have lead The Institute to start adding tracking chips to their Coursers as a fail safe. It also explains her different personality compared to other Coursers, like X6-88.
  • Or the chip isn't 100% accurate. This is backed in Fallout 3 when Zimmer and Armitage are able to track A3-21 to Rivet City but are unable to determine who he is.

The Sole Survivor suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
In the opening sequence of the game, the player character is a chatty individual, engaging in lively conversation with their spouse and robot butler. Then news hits of bombs falling, and they personally witness one such bomb going off near their neighborhood before going into Vault 111. Then, they bear witness to Kellogg murdering their spouse and kidnapping their son. This would explain how they went from being chatty to saying very little: the horrors they witnessed would break most people, and it's all they can do to hold themselves together long enough to survive in the Commonwealth.

Father got cancer due to radiation exposure from the opening of the game.
As young as he was when the bombs fell, it would not be surprising that the radiation he was exposed to mere moments before being lowered into Vault 111 would compromise his health. The cancer was kept under control for 60 years thanks to the Institute's technology, though.
  • Unlikely. This would have squelched the Institute's plan to use Baby Shaun's DNA as the basis for Gen-3 synth organic components if he had such radiation damage. It's the whole reason they acquired him in the first place since even Institute members had accumulated radiation damage to their DNA that made them not an option.

Possible Idea for 4th gen synths
We know that 1st gen are bare skeleton Terminators, while 2nd gen are Mannequins, culminating in the more realistic but still flawed 3rd gens. What about this for nightmare fuel: 4th gen, unwillingly robotocized people whose memories are conveniently edited, sent back out, and still have enough of the original parts to still make them appear totally human/themselves. The implants influence their decisions and no matter what they do, it would always benefit the Institute. In fact, this would be pretty possible, considering Father doesn't have long to live and Kellogg is effectively immortal due to his implants. It is known how Father looked down upon augmentation, but Kellogg was very much in favor for it. Father dies, Kellogg rises, and hello 4th gen

The Enclave also sent scouts into the Commonwealth decades ago.
The X-01 Power Armor bears a striking resemblance to the Advanced Power Armor from Fallout 2, rather the Enclave Power Armor from Fallout 3. This implies that the X-01 is old model Enclave armor. The Enclave sent scouts to the Commonwealth, just like the Brotherhood did. Also just like the Brotherhood, many of the scouts never returned. That explains where the X-01 suits came from. It also explains why their primary power sources are burnt out (requiring fusion cores) and why the suits the player finds are coated with rust—they've been standing around, unattended, for nearly 40 years.

Trapper Armor seen in Far Harbor wasn't actually made with fighting human opponents in mind.
Instead, they were designed with fighting the three most prevalent animal enemies on the island in consideration: Wolves, Anglers, and Gulpers.
  • Anglers can spit highly-unstable materials in a membranous glob that when ruptured, combusts when exposed to air — such as when hitting a surface. How do you fight something like that? With protective insulation, I.E. the tires that form the bulk of the armor.
  • The thick tires have a secondary effect of mitigating much of the harm the wolves can do with their stubby teeth and claws, as they can't bite or scratch through materials meant to contend with rough concrete roads and the hazards found on them such as nails and broken glass. Additionally, the Lobster Trap helmets may have been meant to keep wolves from clawing up the Trapper's face, with a sturdy rope or steel wire mesh catching claws before they could actually reach their mark; a side benefit to be had is this also works with large bits of rock, wood, or what have you kicked up by a battle.
  • Due to the size of a Gulper's mouth, the Trappers found the best offense besides blowing their brains out was to make the Gulper's life miserable if it managed to bite down on you. They may be able to eat anything, but their insides aren't indestructible. In order to survive encounters (or at least take the gulper with you/allow your friends an easier time of killing it,) the trappers added lots of large rusty spikes to the rubber insulation. When the gulper attacks, it gets a mouthful of sharp steel things instead of soft squishy trapper, ripping up its mouth and allowing the trapper to escape, or otherwise severely debilitating the gulper (it may be distracted by the pain from the guy it just ate's spikes tearing it up, or it may choke to death because it can't dislodge the thing caught in its throat now.)
All of this together also just happens to create a serviceable fighting suit, with the tire parts being sufficient to stop low-powered/poorly loaded rounds and turn aside or stop blades, a helmet able to mitigate some of the debris of a battle, and the spikes able to be used offensively in close quarters — after all, getting bodychecked by a dude covered in rusty spikes isn't gonna feel good unless you happen to be in a bipedal armored car (in which case, you might just be mad at him for scratching the paint.)

The Quantum X-01 suit in the Galactic Zone was actually part of Project Cobalt.
As Bradberton had his fingers in an awful lot of pies in D.C., it's reasonable that he may have seen/heard about the earliest X-01 prototypes, and found its aesthetic an ideal marketing platform for Nuka-Quantum, as well as for the Galactic Zone (the newest attraction/sub-park when the bombs dropped.) After all, the T51 was already firmly in the nation's mind as military gear, and both the T45 and T60 armors looked much to martial to work well for promotional work: too many sharp edges compared to the T51, and all of them had visible tac-lights and respirators, which didn't fit the theme of the park.

This new suit however, looked much more akin to the armor of a space marine/explorer, and was also an ideal opportunity to add some more meat to Project Cobalt — in addition to weaponizing Quantum, the company was tasked with finding a way to improve the battery life of the power packs the X-01 used. Enter its Strontium-90 (that is Nuka-Quantum,) coating, which may have been used as a sort of secondary power supply. This was then tested under safe conditions relatively speaking, doing the typical mundane duties Enclave soldiers in the future would see them doing whenever on the mainland among the irradiated masses. Among these would have been lugging around boxes of Quantum and Thirst Zappers to hand out for that staff member's Galactic Zone promotional duties. After seeing its battery life under civil conditions, the next step before the bombs fell may well have been issuing updated suits to specialist forces in China (while T60s replaced the aging T45s still forming the probable bulk of Power Armored units,) but instead we got an atomic apocalypse and the armor and its research being mothballed, at least until it was picked back up and finished by the Enclave.

Porter Gage is from—or at least has been to—Tamriel.
Consider the following:
  • 1: He's called "Porter", as if it were a title. The Fighters Guild in The Elder Scrolls has members called "Porters".
  • 2: He refers to Mirelurks as "Mudcrabs", which are crustaceans found in various provinces of Tamriel, including areas where the aforementioned Fighters Guild operates.
  • 3: The Skyrim DLC Fall of the Space Core, features the Space Core, which was introduced in the Portal series, which is set on Earth. Interdimensional travel is a recurring theme in TES games.

The Drifter on the Bridge and Dogmeat's Origin
If you explore post-war Sanctuary when you first arrive upon exiting Vault 111, you'll notice some interesting things: An old mattress in one of the houses (A blue house west of The House of Tomorrow), two unmarked graves behind a house (A yellow ruined house on the cul-de-sac), and a dead drifter next to a dead Mongrel Dog (at the very end of the bridge as you exit Sanctuary). A little further down the road, at the abandoned Red Rocket Truck Stop, you meet Dogmeat. Perhaps while you, the Sole Survivor, were still frozen in Vault 111, a group of three settlers made their way to Sanctuary Hills in an effort to escape the Commonwealth. While here, they were ambushed by a pack of feral ghouls, but not just nameless ones, the residents of Sanctuary Hills who never made it to safety in time (There is a random encounter where you're attacked by a pack of ferals with names of your old neighbors). Two of these settlers were killed, hence the graves, the man at the bridge was simply laying his friends to rest. This man was the previous owner of Dogmeat, and was injured by the feral ghouls when attempting to escape Sanctuary. Of course, with Codsworth in denial and stuck in his regular subroutines, he never intervened. This injured man, heavily bleeding, was perfect prey for a stray Mongrel, but the man had managed to kill the Mongrel with a tire iron before dying himself. Dogmeat simply ran, chasing the ghouls away and possibly to find help, and that's where he finds you, his new friend, at the cost of his old ones.

Automatron DLC's Title is a spoiler with different inflection
The seemingly innocuous title of the DLC could have been a spoiler. While most people latched on to the Automatron DLC as a recurring character from the previous game, considering the events and how they unfold during the storyline, could the title spoiled the fact that the main antagonist of the DLC is the Auto-matron? (As in the female counterpart of Patron?)
  • Confirmed, the official Traditional Chinese translation of this DLC says "Mechanic Matron."

The next Fallout game will allow the player to utilize the Old Save Bonus
Considering how Bethesda have proven themselves to be massive Bioware fans in this game — since they clearly were heavily inspired by Mass Effect when working on Fallout 4 — the next Fallout game will allow the player to import some of the old save data from their Fallout 4 playthrough. This will likely make it easier for Bethesda to preserve the player's choices in 4 without causing half the fanbase to scream bloody murder if they pick a definite ending.

Curie and Codsworth went through Rampancy.
Curie and Codsworth should serve as case studies. They're both artificially intelligent robots and while Curie clearly became sentient, and Codsworth did as well to a lesser extent, the various robots we discover in the fallout series are out of their minds, brainlessly continuing on with their last stated instruction, and in most cases becoming immediately hostile to the player character. This is characteristic of rampancy. Meanwhile, by the time we discover Codsworth and Curie, they seem to have developed personalities. Codsworth is still putting on a facade because he knows nothing else, whereas Curie has been sentient for a very long time.

Deacon is the Lone Wanderer: addition
I can't take credit for the "Deacon is the Lone Wanderer" idea myself and is better discussed elsewhere, but an epileptic tree did just hit me about that. One of the few (seemingly) true things we know about Deacon is that he was part of an anti-synth gang, the University Point Deathclaws, that murdered his wife, Barbara, when they found out she was a synth, prompting Deacon to join the Railroad. What if the "anti-synth gang" wasn't the University Point Deathclaws, but the Brotherhood of Steel (a known anti-synth group that the Wanderer seems to have canonically allied to) and what if "Barbara" was actually Sarah Lyons (a bit of a Fan-Preferred Couple with TLW, and it is certainly in the Institute's MO to replace someone high up in another organization, as with the "In Sheep's Clothing" quest). Since Sarah's status as "Killed in Action" is often theorized to be actually her being murdered by her own troops (usually theorized to be so Maxon could take charge, though what if that wasn't the ONLY reason...) that part syncs up. Deacon saying he killed all the University Point Deathclaws after they murdered Barbara could also explain why the Lyons Pride seems conspicuously absent in Fallout 4.

Meaning post-Fallout 3, TLW marries Sarah, who is shortly revealed to be a synth, so her own troops turn on her, possibly on a mission, and kill her, only to in turn by killed by an enraged Wanderer. "Deacon", still unwilling to be completely honest about his past, tells the story in a way that's actually rather honest for him, but nonetheless still changes the names.

  • OP here and full disclosure: I sincerely doubt this is the case, but it is still fun to think about. (Also, I haven't quite gotten that far in Deacon's questline yet, so if I got some of the facts wrong, please correct me).

Deacon is the Courier from New Vegas
The Courier, like Deacon, is such a blank slate that he could be literally anyone, but when you consider that Deacon makes cracks about events in the previous games and on the West Coast, and that on the rare occasions when he's straight with you he mentions that he's had significant plastic surgery, up to and including gender reassignment, and his capacity to just "blend in" with the surrounding environment, it makes sense that Deacon and the Courier are the same person.

He's also a master of getting "packages" from point A to point B.

Obviously, this implies the NCR ending, as it's the only one that allows for all West Coast factions to remain intact if damaged and for the Courier to pack his bags and start walking east in search of adventure. But it's pretty clear from the various endings in Fallout: New Vegas that NCR was the ending they were planning on picking anyway, for the aforementioned reasons of it leaving the BoS intact, the Legion crippled, and the NCR even stronger but seriously over-extended. There's significantly more plot possible from the NCR ending than the Legion ending, for example.

The Puppet Man passed through the commonwealth
Somebody has been leaving teddy bears in poses ranging from the humorous to the downright disturbing. From a teddybear playing chequers with a skeleton, to another sitting on a toilet reading a newspaper, to one in a navy captain's hat riding a giddyup buttercup. How many fallout characters would take the time to do this, other than the puppet man?

Synths were never intended to be servants/slaves, they were meant for Brain Uploading
But something went wrong at some point. There's actually a fair bit of evidence for this scattered throughout the game.

1)The Institute's motto is "Mankind Redefined". It's a little vague but race of robotic servants or slaves is hardly redefining mankind. If anything it's a reversion to older forms of thinking.

2) Nick Valentine. While the memory engrams are from pre-war Research, he's evidence that at some point the Institute was experimenting with uploading human minds into synth bodies. Going by some of DiMA's dialogue in Far Harbour, it wasn't just Nick's mind either, that was just the most recent upload before he and DiMA escaped.

3) Kellog. Clearly at one point the Institute was researching cybernetics and related life extension technologies. According to holotapes that can be found in abandoned areas during the Brotherhood's assault this line of research was eventually abandoned for unknown reasons but they still had access to it and dusted if off for Kellog to use.

The concept of redefining mankind, the previous research into cybernetics and life extension technology and the experiments in uploading human minds into synth bodies ultimately culminating in Nick Valentine, when taken all together point to the Institute having some form of transhumanist goals, at least to start with. By the time the player encounters them they've clearly deviated from this, but at a guess the original plan for the Synths was to keep researching until they were advanced enough at which point they would upload their minds en masse so they could continue their research in new, immortal bodies. But at some point the synths became a means in of themselves.

The V.A.T.S. aspect of the game is an actual aspect in-universe as a cybernetic implant
The male sole survivor is a front-line soldier, while the female sole-survivor, given her proficiency in weapons, might as well be part of the military. Given the technological advancements of the pre-war world, with the Chinese have combat suits that allowed them to turn invisible at will, the Americans having Power Armor, a building-sized robot, while smaller robots are so common that it became a staple of civilian life, it is possible that the U.S. Military installed cybernetic implants in their troops to increase their combat efficiency - perhaps as a means to combat the stealthy Chinese troops. Flanking a soldier with normal reflexes is one thing, flanking a soldier who have lightning-fast reflexes that can locate enemies in ambush within milliseconds is another. The same can be said about the Courier, who is rescued by Mr. Robert House, the founder of RobCo and the one who brought much of the technological advancements to the United States. Why is the accuracy of V.A.T.S. is dependent on perception stats? From other perception-based perks, it is clear that perception stat also includes mental focus - good luck hitting something on instinct when you can't even focus your own thoughts. And why is the V.A.T.S. accuracy capped at 95%? Even if the implant supercharges your reflexes, there's no guarantee that a muscle twitch or so wouldn't fumble the attack. And why would action points, or in other words, how many attacks you can make, be tied to agility stats? Although less justified, it is possible to hand wave the V.A.T.S. implants are designed to accelerate everyone's reflexes to similar levels, but the better the natural reflexes of the person is, the easier it is on the user's body.

Glory isn't a Synth.
In the vanilla game, when Glory dies in the Railroad's questline, one notable object her body is lacking is a synth component. Now, this could simply be developer oversite, but there are a few clues that this is actually a hint at Glory's true identity. When you first meet Nick Valentine, he explicitly states that every synth he's ever met has no memory of the Institute, including himself, and chalks the fact up to a failsafe the Institute included to prevent anyone from using lost or escaped synths to find them.

While Far Harbor reveals that Nick's memories were not wiped via failsafe, the fact he knows other synths who have lost their memories implies the failsafe does indeed exist. Remember, synths who have undergone Dr. Amari's procedure have had their faces changed and genuinely believe they are human, so Nick would have no way of knowing these synths ARE synths. He could only be talking about synths who have not undergone the Railroad's memory wipe, and so must have lost the memories some other way.

Despite this, Glory - who should fall under the category of synth who have not been subjected to the Railroad's mindwipe and would thus be affected by the Institute's failsafe - recalls what it was like inside the Institute to a degree that she couldn't possibly be lying. So, she couldn't be affected by the failsafe. If she has not been affected by the failsafe, and she has no synth component, then we have no evidence beyond her word that she really is a synth. The only other possibility that explains Glory's knowledge of the Institute is that she did, in fact, come from them, but not as a synth. Glory is a human, born inside the Institute, who was sympathetic enough to the synths that she wanted to help. Patriot, a human around the same physical age as Glory, was already helping but had no idea if the synths he was releasing were actually surviving. Since someone was already helping synths escape, Glory instead volunteered to serve as a guard for the synths above ground.

Once she did, she met the Railroad - who were already fulfilling her chosen role - and decided to pose as one of the synths to avoid the Railroad's suspicion of Institute humans. When they offer her a memory wipe and a new life, she refuses, both because she is already doing what she wants to do with her life by joining the Railroad and because allowing the memory wipe would let Dr. Amari see her memories, exposing Glory's true identity. This would also mean that, while the Railroad is struggling with the question of how to get inside of the Institute, Glory would know the secret the entire time. She kept quiet, both to preserve her cover and because, as a young member of the Institute who is likely untrained in the highest sciences they explore, she simply has no idea how the teleporter works, so any intel she provided on it wouldn't be useful to the Railroad's goals.

Cait manslaughtered her siblings
while murdering her parentsHer parents were ruthless sociopaths who bred and trained their own daughter to become sexual livestock. Barely anything to weep over. But would they do it all over again? It was practically guaranteed. Why doesn't Cait say anything about siblings? Because that's the real reason she drugs herself into amnesia, along with a suspicious deflection away from whether or not she found anyone else at her old folks' house. When she lost control at the sight of her tormentors, everything moving became a target to be beaten and shot.

Vim! will become more populous than nuka cola in the commonwealth, thanks to sole survivor
While there are still many bottles of Nuka-cola out there, they will eventually run out. Vim on the other hand can be manufactured locally, does not contain rads and restores more hit points. Out in new vegas they will make their own homebrewed nuka-cola.

Perks are a result of super solider experiments on the sole survivor
While many soldier’s (and a few lawyers) had the experiment performed on them, only the sole survivor had the necessary trigger event (the death of their partner and kidnapping of their son) to activate the dormant power within them.

The reason ghouls all look so similar
Becoming a ghoul would seem to be linked to genetic factors, some people have that particular mutation that makes them turn into ghouls with enough radiation exposure. That got me thinking, there is a genetic disorder that makes it sufferers look similar to each other, Down syndrome. What if becoming a ghoul causes people to have a similar facial appearance in the same way? That or the lack or noses, hair and their gaunt appearance just makes them look alike.

The institute ordered all ghouls to be driven out of diamond city

With the mayor a synth replacement it would have been easy to organise, but why did they do it? Because ghouls, especially the older ones, would have made things difficult for them. They might be difficult or impossible to replace with synths and their long memories would make replacing other citizens more difficult as well.

The Incredibles is an in-universe pre-war comic series
Full disclosure, this is more head canon than anything that could ever really be true.
  • In Incredibles 2, Dash is shown eating a bowl of cereal called Sugar Bombs. Sugar Bombs is one of the most common pre-war breakfast cereals in the Fallout-verse, to the extent that you can even paint T51 power armor to be a walking advertisement for the stuff, something that did actually canonically happen pre-war in the cases of Vim! and Nuka Cola.
  • The Incredibles is also set in an ambiguous year, but the architecture, clothing style, and the cars suggest late sixties to early seventies, with Fallout maintaining that kind of styling into the 2070's until the Great War. Interestingly, The Incredibles also features more modern to advanced technology, like the tablet that Mirage sneaks into Mr. Incredible's study in the first film. The Bethesda games even already have sidequests revolving around the actual comics that were in print pre-war, such as The Silver Shroud and the Mechanist. It wouldn't be hard to imagine whichever company publishes The Incredibles in the Fallout-Verse to be equivalent to DC Comics to Hubris's Marvel Comics.
  • The Screen Slaver's mask in Incredibles 2 bears a striking resemblance to that of the Ghost People from the Dead Money expansion for Fallout: New Vegas, possibly indicating the illustrator took inspiration from the hazmat suit that the construction workers building the Sierra Madre were wearing.

Radiation in the fog isn't what drove the trappers mad, it's heavy metal poisoning

When you collect fog from fog condensers you get one part oil and three parts steel. And if the fog can be part steel, why not other metals like mercury? Add that to the oil, which can also have detrimental affects on human health and you can see how the trappers could have got that way.

How does the metal and oil end up in the fog? Who knows, but in a world where radiation is pretty much magic, it seems possible.

The Brotherhood in FO 4 has absorbed the Outcasts and the DC Enclave remnants

The Outcasts left the Brotherhood because they objected to the reforms under Elder Lyons, so Maxson may have re-intergrated them with the promise of a return to the Brotherhood's roots under his command. Likewise he could have offered any Enclave survivors/Po W's/noncombatants a chance to join up if they were willing-they're already knowledgeable in advanced technology and power armor, so they'd make perfect recruits so long as they were willing to renounce their allegiance to the Enclave.This would explain why the brotherhood in 4 has suddenly developed an attitude of fantastic racism: Maxson is trying to consolidate three seperate idealogical groups under one banner, so he needs to demonstrate to all involve that the brotherhood will act in line with their interests.-His mission to 'save' the commonwealth and (allegedly) help it's people would satisfy the former Lyon's Pride members who want to help the wastelanders.-His die-hard approach to dangerous technology like the Synths and Institute demonstrates to the former Outcasts that he's moving back towards the brotherhood's original mission.-His attitude towards 'mutants' is to satisfy the former Enclave among their ranks: While they may have to soften their definition of mutants from 'anyone who isn't a member of the enclave' to only super mutants and ghouls, this makes for an easier adjustment than asking them to abandon their mutational purity beliefs alltogether.In short, both Maxson's goals and attitudes and the Commonwealth mission on the whole serve as a means of cementing the unification of three previously hostile but similar groups under an idealogy that comprimises enough to suit all three. He isn't adopting these views because he genuinely believes them (Where would he even have been exposed to such ideas under Elder Lyons and Sarah, anyway?) but because he recognizes it's what is necessary to forge the three groups into a lasting faction.

  • The Brotherhood has definitely absorbed the Outcasts; the Rise of Elder Maxson entry on Quinlan's terminal states that Maxson brokered a re-unification, and while it is likely that there is a bit of… embellishment of his successes, that being the official story at least indicates there was some form of integration of Outcasts forces into the main Capital Brotherhood. No mention of Enclave remnants, but then that would have been far more problematic when it comes to propaganda, and so might well have been left out out of the official story.

Vault 81's molerat infestation is a failed attempt of making molerats into farm animals. Underground.
How else are a colony of molerats used as genetic experiments besides viral-research get into those dumb cages and burrow their escape. Even IF 81 succeeded in this attempt, molerat meat and hide is moderately profitable and you would still need to pay caravans to transport those products.


Fallout 5 is going to be aliens.
Alright, so, probably the most interesting, memorable, and indepth side quest in Fallout 4 is the Cabot House line, which deals with aliens. Depending on how you play it, it could end with one of the main quest givers saying they're heading off to the Mojave because they're pretty sure there's a lost alien city buried out there somewhere. Some have taken this as foreshadowing for a future DLC, but I'm going a different way and saying it's foreshadowing for the next full Fallout game. Fallout 3 had a major, indepth, memorable side quest that set up for Fallout 4 completely; introduced synths, the institute, all of it. It makes sense that Bethesda would use a similar method to set up for Fallout 5.
  • While it would make for an awesome new game, it would kind of detract from the "Falloutness" and make it into something else. We've already had Mothership Zeta for Fallout 3 which feels pretty wacky and out of place and not at all something that could be expanded into a main questline. The whole theme of Fallout has been about surviving in and rebuilding a world that is completely fucked. This always involves a dominant faction who has the same goal (The Master, the Enclave, Caesar's Legion, Mr House, the NCR, the Brotherhood, the Institute) who the player can either support or destroy. The thing about all those factions is that they are all revealed to be totalitarian, racist, and xenophobic and possess an absolutely repugnant moral code that no rational person should respect. But they all work so well because they're human and the games are about human ugliness and embracing or overcoming it. An alien Big Bad in a later Fallout game would make the game no longer about exploring the human condition.
    • I see your point, but disagree to an extent; Fallout 4 is largely about the human ability to relate to and empathize with "the other"; in this case, Synths. Do they have rights? Are they people? These questions are central to the game's story. Expanding that to aliens would be difficult but not necessarily impossible. As to the point of tone — that Mothership Zeta (which I unfortunately never got the opportunity to play) is wacky and out of place, I might point out that Fallout 4 is noted as being much less wacky and comedic than previous entries into the series. If Fallout 5 continues on that trend, aliens might be out of the question — although, while weird, the Cabot line is decidedly not wacky, so it's possible. But, alternatively, it could mean that Fallout 5 will swing in the other way and embrace the series' comedic side and the wackiness of 50s Science Fiction, which includes aliens.
  • A sequel game involving the Zeta aliens will be called "Minutemen" since the Minutemen are the only faction capable of raising an army large enough to deal with this threat and are the faction most likely to survive this game.
    • JOSSED!
    • OP for the alien WMG here. Personally I doubt that Fallout 5 is going to take place in the Commonwealth at all, and thus wouldn't feature the minutemen. Cabot suggests the alien city is in the Mojave desert, which would mean that the potential resistance factions would be the NCR, Ceasar's Legion, and New Vegas. I don't know how Bethesda would work around the multiple endings of NV, but I do know that direct sequels aren't Bethesda's thing, and I doubt we'll see any more carry over in terms of factions and characters from Fallout 4 to Fallout 5 than we did from Fallout 3 to Fallout 4.
    • The Minutemen may not be a faction out west — instead, you begin the game as an envoy of the Minutemen sent out to the NCR to establish official diplomatic relations. Aliens decapitate the NCR's leadership and you have to recruit a new army of Minutemen to fight the threat.
  • What, and rip off Borderlands? People surviving in a Deathworld, a few of which search for an alien vault of treasures while dealing with the hostile wildlife, psychopaths, and robots? Just add in the mentally-powerful sirens, use atomics for eridium, and digi-struct technology, and that is what you get: a more darker and edgier, realistic Borderlands 1. Heck, the whole defeat alien armada idea has been done in Borderlands: the pre-sequel, as you fight against an alien army that is trying to blow up the moon you're on. And, sad to say, the whole defeat the villian that thinks he is a hero, when in fact instead of helping out the world made it a worse place? Borderlands 2.
    • OP here. Well beyond the fact that little to nothing about Borderland's premise is unique to the Borderlands franchise, and that the Fallout series predates the Borderlands series by a very significant margin, I'd point out that is, firstly, making a lot of assumptions about the suggestion, what the plot of a hypothetical Zetan-focused Fallout game would be, and ignores the very significant differences between the two settings, the very significant tonal differences between the two franchizes, not to mention the very different core gameplay mechanics.

SPECIAL stats will be increased by performing specific actions to boost a stat
  • Strength automatically increases by getting unarmed kills, melee kills, heavy weapon (minigun, flamer, Gatling laser, Tesla Rifle, Junk Jet, missile launcher, nuke launcher, mortar cannon) or being encumbered. Increased strength unlocks other perks automatically.
  • Perception is a stat that can be increased through some actions but also increases and decreases situationally. Base Perception is based on equipped eyewear, number of Discovered and Explored locations in the vicinity, time of day and orientation (decreased when looking into the sun, increases during dead of night). Perception is increased by getting sighted rifle kills (scope based kills don’t count), enemy types already encountered and time since last Phoropter usage.
  • Endurance to ballistic and energy damage increases the amount of times you heal from damage by eating and drinking, performing blood transfusions and sleeping. Stimpacks and Doctor visits don’t count. Radiation endurance increases every time you visit a doctor to decontaminate. You ultimately get the Barkskin perk that gives you high damage and energy Resistance and the Ghoulish perk that allows high radiation level to heal health. Crafting the Adamantium Skeleton and Shield Harmonics maxes your endurance.
  • Charisma is boosted automatically by successful persuasion attempts, boosted to a lesser extent through failed persuasion attempts, situationally increases and decreases based on current wealth, and increases with companion affinities. Persuasion successes depend on Karma and Intelligence - good karma helps the Peaceful persuasion attempts, evil karma helps Threaten attempts, neutral karma helps with Sarcastic replies while Intelligence helps with Investigate attempts.
  • Intelligence increases with books read, notes read, terminal entries read, items crafted and successful hacks. Intelligence can decrease by burning books, erasing terminals and by addictions, as well as getting concussions (crippled in the head).
  • Agility is increased by jumps, sprints, time spent moving while crouching or sneaking, hip firing kills, stealthy unarmed and melee kills, mines and traps disarmed, locks picked, successful pickpocket attempts, and decreases by oversleeps (> 8 hrs sleep or > 5 hrs waits).
  • Luck increases anytime your Karma level increases or decreases, with certain caveats. Good actions with positive karma boosts luck, bad actions with good karma decreases it, good actions with bad karma also decreases it, but bad actions with bad karma increases it. Increased luck with good karma gives you increased accuracy with aimed weapons, increased sweet spot while picking locks, increased hack attempts, greater amount of caps and junk found as loot. Increased negative karma luck gives you increased damage when hip firing, increased splash damage with heavy weapons, decreased detection chance while lockpicking and hacking and more ammo, grenades and mines found as loot. Low luck increases the chance of hostile encounters.

Perks will be gained by books read
Issues of Wasteland Survival Guide grant the following perks
  • Know Your Enemy boosts Perception and grants the Awareness perk.
  • Such Creatures In It unlocks the ability to loot meat, increases Perception and grants the Animal Friend perk when Charisma is high enough.
  • Water, Water Everywhere unlocks the Cooking Station blueprint for crafting as well as the ability to craft purified water from dirty water. Boosts Intelligence and when Intelligence is high enough, grants the Chemist perk.
  • Bar and Grill unlocks various recepies for cooked meat and vegetables, and alcohol brewing. Boosts Intelligence, counts towards the Chemist perk.
  • Heal Thyself unlocks the blueprints for crafting Med-X, Rad-X, Stimpacks and Radaways.
  • To Tame A Land unlocks the ability to craft Garden Plots and basic Water Pumps as well as planting crops.
  • Breakfast of Superheroes unlocks special recepies for consumables that grant night vision, negated fall damage, invisibility, underwater breathing and automatic health regen.
  • Hunter’s Wisdom grants increased damage and damage resistance against all animals.
All issues are unlock able merchandise sold by general supplies traders once you complete personal quests for them.Issues of Guns and Bullets are sold by weapons merchants upon completing personal missions for them, and unlock the following
  • Barrelling Forward unlocks the Gunsmith perk and adds gun barrel mods.
  • And You Shall Receive unlocks receiver mods to convert to different ammo types and firing modes.
  • Of Good Stock unlocks stock mods as well as items such as bayonets, magazine mods and suppressors.
  • Scoped’n Dropped unlocks various scope mods.
  • Trigger Rush gives you slowed time and increased damage at low health. Gives only the hip fire damage bonus while addicted at medium health.
  • Killshot gives increased headshot or weak point damage.
  • Penetrator unlocks armor piercing receiver mods, that allow weapons to shoot through cover as well as the Thermal scope mod that sees through cover.
  • Gun-Fu unlocks the ability to set up multiple shots in the VATS equivalent.
Issues of Covert Operations Manual, found at various military installations, unlock the following
  • Who Goes There unlocks the Sneak skill. Without this, cover or darkness with dark colored clothing is required to remain hidden.
  • Can’t Keep Me Out unlocks the Lockpick skill. Without this, a companion is needed to pick locks.
  • What’s Yours is Mine unlocks the Pickpocket skill.
  • Trapper Creeper unlocks the ability to not set off traps and mines while sneaking as well as the Defuser perk for disarming traps and mines.
  • Cloak and Dagger grants a 2.5 stealthy unarmed and melee attack damage multiplier. Also increases Stealth Boy or invisibility food duration.
  • Mister Sandman grants a 2.5 multiplier to damage inflicted on sleeping enemies with silenced or melee weapons. Stacks with Cloak and Dagger.
  • One Shot One Kill grants 2.5 damage multiplier for sneak attacks with scoped weapons. If the target is at full health, an additional 2 damage multiplier is granted.
  • Pants on Fire unlocks the reverse pickpocketing ability for grenades to explode pants.
Total Hack, found in small manufacturing facilities or electronics stores grants the following perks
  • Issue #1 unlocks the Hacker skill.
  • Issue #2 unlocks the Made of Metal perk that increases hack attempts and decreases lockout time.
  • Issue #3 unlocks the Robots Serve Mankind perk that allows you to shut down or self destruct robots.
  • Issue #4 unlocks the Robot Friend perk that allows you to incite a robot to become your companion for a short duration, then shut down.
  • Issue #5 unlocks the Power Sensor perk that allows you to trace a turret’s power source, so it can be cut with the Penetrator perk.
  • Issue #6 unlocks the Turret Master perk that allows the ability to hack a turret via its terminal to temporarily target your enemies, then deactivate.
  • Issue #7 unlocks the blueprint to craft terminals.
  • Issue #8 unlocks the Network Scanner perk that allows you to hack and access all terminals in a building from any single terminal.
Tales of a Junktown Jerky Vendor, sold by roving caravan merchants upon completing missions for them, unlock the following
  • Odds and Ends unlocks better buying and selling prices with junk items.
  • Salt of the Earth unlocks better prices for produce and fertilizer.
  • Order Up! grants better prices with cooked food, purified water and beverages as well as alcohol.
  • Shoot the Breeze gives better prices with weapons and ammo.
  • You Need Protection gives better prices for leather and metal armor. Combat and Power armor as well as Weaved clothes cannot be purchased and must be crafted with the Armorer perk.
  • For You Wholesale unlocks the ability to buy shipments of various raw materials.
  • Cap Collector unlocks the ability to invest in any store to increase its buying capacity.
  • Jerktown Junkie Vendor unlocks buyers of people captured with Mesmetron Collars. These can be either slavers buying victims, or settlement sheriffs buying wanted fugitives.
Live and Love, sold by innkeepers or brothel madams upon finishing quests for them, unlocks the following perks
  • Gift of Gab unlocks a boost to chances at succeeding at Inquiring persuasion checks.
  • Lying Like a Congressman unlocks a boost at succeeding at all types of persuasion checks that involve lying.
  • Lover’s Embrace unlocks the temporary boost to stat increase rates from sleeping near a romantic or sexual partner. Also unlocks the locations of all brothels.
  • Weak In the Knees unlocks the Ladykiller and Confirmed Bachelor persuasion perk for men, or the Black Widow and Cherchez la Femme perk for women. Also unlocks the ability to craft lingerie outfits that can be ballistic weaved with Armorer.
  • Party Time increases the amount of alcohol needed to get addicted, as well as boosting the Strength and Charisma boosts given by alcoholic beverages.
  • Far Out increases the duration of chem effects as well as increasing the amount of chem consumption needed to get addicted.
  • Lets Go Sunning grants health regeneration when traveling unclothed or wearing lingerie during sunny conditions. Doesn’t work if it rains, but boosts Endurance.
  • Be New People unlocks the locations of barber surgeons who will change your appearance for caps. Changing your appearance also has the effect of a Karmic Rebalance, which lowers Luck to its lowest level.
Surgical Journal, sold by doctors upon completing quests for them, unlocks the following
  • Trauma Inn unlocks the ability to heal crippled limbs while sleeping. Without this, a doctor’s visit is required after the Stimpack has worn off.
  • Blood Flow unlocks the ability to transfuse blood to heal damage. Boosts endurance if done.
  • Combat Medic boosts the effectiveness and duration of Stimpacks and Radaway.
  • Isodoped grants the ability to never get alcohol or chem addiction at high radiation levels.
  • The Autistic Savant grants a boost to all other stat increase rates if Intelligence is very low. Intelligence can be lowered through addictions, repeated untreated concussions and destroying books and notes and scrubbing terminals.
  • Adamantium Skeleton unlocks a cybernetic limb upgrade that maxes ballistic resistance without Powered Armor and prevents limb crippling. Doesn’t prevent concussions.
  • Shield Harmonics unlocks another cybernetic upgrade that increases energy and radiation resistance to the maximum attainable without Powered Armor, by refracting electromagnetic waves. This cancels out the Lets Go Sunning perk though.
Tesla Science issues found in schools, libraries and university campuses, unlock the following crafting blueprints
  • Limitless Potential unlocks basic electrical devices (switches, conduits, lights, batteries for power), as well as the Tesla electric rifle blueprints.
  • Move the World unlocks the blueprints for motors, allowing you to craft windmill generators, fans, motorized pumps, combustion engine generators (if Chemist and Explosives Expert are also unlocked), swiveling turrets, elevators and basic robots.
  • That Sound, What Is It? Unlocks sonic transmitters for driving away (or drawing in for trapping) animals, radios for transmitting messages and music, and radars which act as Early Warning systems for settlements.
  • All About Focus unlocks lasers, allowing you to craft basic laser weapons, laser tripwires, all laser turrets and the Phoropter for improving eyesight and Perception.
  • Burning Bright unlocks blueprints for plasma weapons, neon lights, plasma grenades and plasma artillery.
  • Power of Atom unlocks Nuclear Physicist, allowing you to craft irradiating weapons such as Gamma Guns and Radium Rifles, build rad decontamination arches, craft Mini-Nukes and their launchers, Nuka Grenades, and Quantum ammo.
  • Solar Powered unlocks fusion. This allows for the construction of fusion generators that can be configured to either provide electricity or produce fusion cores, Gatling laser and Power Armor frame crafting blueprints.
  • Relatively Speaking unlocks relativistic physics, allowing for the construction of Gauss rifles, teleportation hubs at settlements as well as the teleported mod for Powered Armor, allowing you to instantly fast travel anywhere on the map when not in combat.

Other Perks will be gained by repeatedly performing certain actions
Gunslinger is unlocked by getting x number of kills with a pistol.Trigger Happy is gained after getting x kills with energy weapons, assault rifles, combat rifles, sub machine guns or shotguns while hip firing only. Using the aiming sights won’t count for this.Rifleman is unlocked after getting x aimed kill shots with long guns such as laser and plasma rifles, hunting rifles, combat rifles, assault rifles and Gauss rifles, without the use of a scope.Heavy Gunner is unlocked after getting x kills with miniguns, flamethrowers, Tesla rifles, Gatling lasers and Quantum splatter cannons.Grenadier is unlocked after getting x kills by throwing grenades.Booby Trapper is unlocked after getting x kills through mines or traps.Surveyor is unlocked after discovering x locations. Explorer unlocks after clearing x locations.Pugilist unlocks after x unarmed kills. Designated Hitter unlocks after x melee kills.Crafter unlocks after crafting x basic items. Constructor unlocks after building x buildings consisting of 3 walls, a door, a roof and a floor or foundation.Chemist unlocks after crafting x batteries and purifying x amount of water.

Your character will have one selectable SPECIAL stat almost maxed out and their backstory will depend on the stat selected
Your character originated in Boston in Vault 88 but went west along with a delegation to make formal contact between the Commonwealth and the NCR. However, a rad storm throws the delegation’s vertibird off course, leading them to the Northwest Wasteland around the Seattle area. The vertibird is shot down by a zeta alien that unexpectedly beams into the LZ, and you are the only surviving member.
  • Strength - You were the vertibird’s door gunner.
  • Perception - You were a scout sniper airdropped in advance to secure the LZ and part of a special unit of sharpshooters called MacCready’s Killshootists.
  • Endurance - You were a shotgun wielding shock trooper that always exited the landing vertibird first and part of a special unit called Cait’s Trigger Rushers.
  • Charisma - You were a trade delegate sent to open trade links as part of the larger diplomatic overture.
  • Intelligence - You were part of the diplomatic delegation and were on scientific fact finding assignment.
  • Agility - You were a former thief who is working off a suspended sentence by being a part of a covert intelligence gathering unit founded by the mysterious Deacon.
  • Luck - You were actually from New Vegas and are on the run from gambling debts. You stumbled onto the vertibird crash site and decided to assume the identity of one of the dead Minutemen, and “kill yourself”.
    • Most likely Jossed. The next Fallout is set in West Virginia or thereabouts.
      • Semi-unjossed. The next Fallout was set in West Virginia... but it was a spin-off (and not in the New Vegas-style, but a proper different genre game), so whenever Fallout 5 (or, possibly but highly unlikely, a Fallout New Vegas style-for-Fallout 4 game) is made this might still be true.