Hidden History: FALLOUT – Pre-War Companies

As the release date of Fallout 4 crawls closer and closer, it’s becoming a little more clear exactly what the game will focus on. And it appears that the game will feature a look at the pre-war world of Fallout in much greater detail than we’ve ever seen before. So we thought it’d be a great time to check out what at we know already. A few weeks ago, we took you through some of the many references that are hidden in Fallout’s pre-war products. But that’s not all there is of course. Many aspects of the series’ pre-war companies also happen to contain a few not-quite-obvious references. Anyone who has played Fallout: New Vegas probably remembers the Bright Brotherhood, who were a cult of ghouls with a rocketship living in an abandoned test site. Man, that sounds really weird when you say it out loud like that. Anyway, what you probably don’t know is that the test site is actually based on a real location. In the game, the Rocket Engineering and Production Company of Nevada, called REPCONN Aerospace for short, specialized in rocket fuel manufacturing for the U.S. military. This mirrors the real-world Pacific Engineering and Production Company of Nevada, or PEPCON, who also produced rocket fuel for the military in the 1980s. These days though, the company is only remembered for one thing: the tragic PEPCON explosions, which caused the death of two people in 1988. Not only are the constant explosions at REPCONN a reference to this event, but the location of the REPCONN headquarters, Henderson, Nevada, was also the site of the infamous PEPCON plant. In a previous episode, we discussed Poseidon Energy and their weapon system, Archimedes. One thing we didn’t bring up though was Poseidon’s solar power plant: Helios One. Like Poseidon and Archimedes, Helios is also a reference to ancient Greece. Helios was the Titan personification of the sun, and in Greek the word “Helios”, literally translates to “sun”. That’s not all though, the tower in Helios One, is said to be based on a very similar tower in Southern California’s Solar Two power plant, which was demolished in 2009. However, the location of Helios One may be a reference to a completely different solar power plant, the Nevada Solar One, which is located around where Novac would be in Nevada if it actually existed. One strange thing about Fallout is the single most popular character in the game isn’t really a character at all, he’s the mascot of a fictional company. The Vault Boy is beloved by Fallout fans everywhere for providing a little ironic pep and cheer into a pretty depressing setting. The inspiration for Vault-Tec’s poster boy is actually taken from another iconic mascot. According to the lead programmer of the original Fallout, Tim Cain, the artist behind the Vault Boy was told to simply draw something that reminded them of the Parker Brother’s Mr.Monopoly. Leading to the creation of Vault Boy’s very early concept art. And here’s a bonus piece of trivia you might not know about: Vault Boy has also appeared in a game that had nothing to do with Fallout. No, not Rage (though he makes a small cameo in that game too): it’s the 2002 console game Run Like Hell: Hunt or Be Hunted where he appears on the “PIP Boy Protein Bars”. This is because the game was made by the original Fallout developers, Interplay. When searching the computer terminals of the H&H Tool Company in Fallout; New Vegas, you may stumble an HR email sent to employees of the company saying that anyone found associating with players of Tragic the Garnering will be terminated. This is obviously a reference to Magic the Gathering but it’s also a callback to Fallout 2, where the player sees the game played. The game even parodies specific cards found in Magic: Vox Muby is a play on Mox Ruby and Black Dahlia is a direct reference to Black Lotus. This just goes to show how nerdy Interplay and Obsidian really are. The Bad Comments Showcase, it’s not just for the viewer’s choice episodes anymore! We loved checking out the weirdest comments on our comment section so much that we wanted to start expanding it to every installment of Fallout Hidden History. So today we have a very understated and informative comment from Sweg Gurt who too the time to chime in and say “I like trains”. Thanks for that Sweg, no idea what that has to do with Fallout really, but sure! I like trains too. And now before you go, we have a brief word about a sponsor of ours. Wait. Hold on, before I get started, cue the sponsorship music.
Ah, okay, I feel all Sponsory now. This episode of Hidden History was sponsored by Opinion Outpost. Here’s the gist of it: Opinion Outpost is a website where you can give surveys on different things. Research companies need honest feedback on stuff like TV shows, movies, bags of chips, and politics, and they’re willing to pay for it. You fill out surveys, get points, and redeem said points for cash, or amazon and itunes gift cards. Oh, and with each survey you take you get entered into a $10,000 giveaway. So, if you’re opinionated like I am and interested in getting paid for it, check out the link in the description, or head to opinionoutpost.com You thought you knew Fallout, but hopefully you’ve learned just a thing or two more. Do you know of any other historical or literary references we didn’t cover here? Share them in the comment section below and we might include it in a future episode. If you like Hidden History don’t forget to ‘Like’ and ‘Subscribe’ for more.

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