Why aren’t more people driving cars in the Wasteland? – Fallout Lore

Why aren’t more people driving cars in the Wasteland? – Fallout Lore

When the post-nuclear survivors of World War
III look at an automobile what do you think they’ll see? Building material? A place to sleep perhaps? Transportation? Maybe. In Fallout’s world, America has lots of
cars. Lots and lots of them, but well, they aren’t
for driving, are they? Did people just forget how? Maybe their parents never taught them… or
maybe- maybe as we’ll discover that the reasons are a bit more complicated than that. Cars are useful tools, especially useful
though if you ever find yourself in a radioactive wasteland, where food is both scarce and spread
out. If scavenging for your next can of preservatives
means living to see your next sunrise, then YES, you better get your hands on a working
vehicle as soon as the bombs fall, because life- life just became a race. This makes Fallout a curious case in the genre
doesn’t it, because while most post-apocalyptic franchises acknowledge the clear utility of
cars in an end-of-world scenario, going so far as to glorify them, Fallout takes the
exact opposite approach. In most parts of the wasteland, cars aren’t
symbols of value and utility. They’re the rusted relics of an old world. Monuments of metal that speak to the mistakes
of a long dead generation. If these old machines could talk, they’d
probably tell us about those poor souls who created them, and how incredibly close humanity
came to solving the crisis which would led to their untimely demise. They would tell us about the Resources Wars
and how while the rest of the world was fighting over the last drops of oil to fuel their cars,
factories, and agriculture, the United States was doing relatively well without gasoline. In this alternate timeline, 11 years before
nuclear fire would engulf the world, America unveiled the first fusion cell. We’re talking nuclear reactors so small
they could fit in your backpack. America used this nearly limitless supply
of power to build everything from robots, to television sets, to… more robots. It was supposed to be a golden age for humanity,
only we know things didn’t end that way. So why is America littered with cars that
seemingly aren’t going anywhere while 200-year-old military robots are still puttering around? Well the answers come to us from before the
Great War. Instead of harnessing atomic energy to save a world that was teetering on the brink, America’s elite started talking behind closed doors. By carefully selecting which companies were
awarded government contracts, American leadership ensured that atomic energy wouldn’t be used
to alleviate the world’s problems but exacerbate them. The atom wouldn’t be harnessed as a tool
for peace and global unity, but as weapon of war and further division. State-sponsored paranoia became the order of the day as government propaganda glorified
war as an Anti-Communist Crusade, rallying Americans and urging them to enlist. The ones who did were given atomic powered
guns and armor- weapons of war fueled by the same technology that might’ve saved them
and the rest of the world. Instead, war would be waged. Mexico, Alaska, Canada… Then the Pacific. Over resources the world
didn’t know it didn’t need to fight over anymore. While the government and oligarchs curved
innovation and national attention towards fueling the war machine- Corvega’s
first atomic-powered
cars rolled off the assembly lines. It’s nuclear-powered engine promising
a brighter future- one free from oil dependency. The same country which gave the world the
Model T centuries earlier was about to revitalize not just an industry, but an entire planet
that was literally starving for resources. It wasn’t just atomic-powered cars either. Advances in nuclear physics were leading to
a scientific renaissance where household replicators once thought the stuff of science fiction, might soon become commonplace. These incredible machines provided everyday
necessities like food, water, medicine, even alcohol with the press of a button. So why did the earth’s population go to
war over scraps, when a buffet of new technology was on the verge of saving them all? Turning this dystopian tale into a utopian one. Looking at the wasteland, we know that all
this amazing consumer technology never quite made it to foreign soil. On the contrary, the exact opposite happened. In the years leading up to the Fallout in this timeline, the
US president issued a statement: the world’s remaining oil supply was to be used exclusively
by the United States, leaving everyone else’s oil-reliant economies to die; furthermore,
while the U.S. does possess the secrets to nuclear fusion, they would not be shared with
anyone- Chinese or otherwise. By exploring Fallout’s wasteland we learn
most stories through what was left behind. 200 years after the bombs fell- and those
same atomic cars, the ones which could’ve helped save the world had they been massively
adopted, serve instead as a reminder of a future that could’ve been. Most survivors don’t use them, at least
the sane ones don’t anyway. Remember, these machines were supposed to
be the salvation for an old world low on fuel, but to the average wastelander? Unlike gas or diesel, atomic-engines are just
too unstable to tinker with. The consequences for screwing up are… rather
explosive, so ironically these machines didn’t save the old world, and they aren’t doing
so much to help the new one either. Funny enough, most pre-war military technology
seems to be working just fine 2 centuries after the bombs fell, and that makes some
sense if you think about it. When the US government is dumping truckloads
of cash into military contracts instead of sustainable consumer technology, do we really
find it that surprising that the sturdiest machines left behind just-so-happened to be
killer robots and suits of power armor? Only a handful of big players in the wasteland
have managed to maintain a few cars. The New California Republic just to name one. And what do you think they use them for? You don’t have to play Fallout for very
long to realize that the new world isn’t so different from the old one. All over the wasteland, pre-war technology
gets used for what it has always been used for. So when America’s post-nuclear descendants
look at a car, they seem to be thinking no differently than their ancestors did. Maybe for the people of the Fallout universe,
war- war is simply in their DNA. And that is what doesn’t seem to be changing
any time soon. And you know what else isn’t changing anytime
soon? Our mod support for the Wasteland Codex. (damn that was a good transition). The Wasteland Codex is our fully-free fully-voiced
lore database for the Pip-boy. The mod has now been downloaded over 100,000
times and we’re not stopping until it’s on every Pip-Boy in the wasteland. To celebrate, this weekend we’ll be releasing
our biggest update yet that’s going to add over 30 new unlockable entries, including
new categories on vehicles, chems and power armor. If you’re looking to digest your Fallout lore on the
go, this mod is for you. Also, we have a sponsor today! It’s been a while. If you’re looking to start your
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month, but if you decide to go that route I would highly recommend using the link below before you sign up. That link entitles the first 500 people who
use it to 2 months of premium for just 99 cents. That’s sidewalk money, so yeah, make sure
if you want it at that price you get yourself in there. Ladies and gentlemen, that concludes this
here lore video. If you have any more suggestions for topics-
burning questions about lore that you need answering- shout out in the comments below
or message at us on twitter. Your question might get turned into the next
lore essay. I’ve been Josh. We’ll catch you later.

About the Author: Michael Flood


  1. I think the world would have nearly recovered after 200+ years, you can learn how to do thinks from surviving books and factories.

  2. I dont understand why people cant get it. There is one big reason which is the mine problem. There are mines everywhere in Fallout US. Driving a car would be suicide.

  3. 3:41 Oil isn't just fuel. Within that use there's plenty of alternatives. But you'll still need fossil fuels for plastic, rubber, lubricants and tons of other things modern industry uses daily. Unlimited source of energy doesn't solve all issues, it just removes one bottleneck out of equation.

  4. They can fix aircraft but not cars?
    Power armor runs on fusion too so figuring the cars also run on fusion…..

  5. There isn't any coolant the car would overheat in 3 seconds, The fallout cars are on nuclear powered except for a few of them…

  6. Also another point. Power generators should be everywhere the size of a wristwatch. Instead having to build a gas generator. It’s the one plus for living in that radioactive world.

  7. My main bet that the easiest way to explain it without saying the game engine is shit, is that the roads are fucked. Like there's potholes deeper than a whore's coochie and junk everywhere, you'd have to have a government willing to clear the roads so cars can be utilized. And for some reason in 200 years the only "stable" governments to arise have been Ceaser's legion and NCR. So there'd have to be a government willing to risk skilled workers to fix sketchy nuclear engines and then fix the roads, and food and water are a higher priority.

  8. Well, here's why I would NOT want a car in the Commonwealth: Have you seen the condition of the roads? They're awful with obstructions everywhere. Looking at the cars in Fallout we can see they are low profile cars. Meaning they hug the road. On roads like these that is simply NOT an option, and you can forget about off-roading. Another reason I'd stay away is: How much work would it take to keep the blasted thing running. Think about it… tires dry-rot you'd need to come up with a way to manufacture new parts like wheel-bearings, air filters (assuming that they do in-fact have any kind of air intake) and countless other parts that I'm not even going to list. Another reason: Fusion cells and cores are hard to find and are expensive. I don't know about you but I use fusion cells and cores like mad. I wouldn't want to waste them in a worn out beat up unsafe rust-bucket when I can use them in my power armor. and the final reason: The common wealth is so full of dangers and hazards. it simply wouldn't be piratical. It only takes a few shots for those cars to explode, and with Super Mutants, Deathclaws, Raiders, gunners, etc you better believe they would attack a moving car.

    There is only one kind of vehicle I would want: A tank. It could take on the awful roads, take being shot at, and would be useful in a combat situation. The only thing about this is: I do not know if any atomic tanks exist. Maybe they do. Maybe some of the pre-war tanks have been retro fitted with atomic engines. I would NOT want a combustion based tank. resources are WAY too rare.

    I also wouldn't want to bother with the APCs. On the account that I don't know how well or poorly they handle rough terrain. Too much of an investment on something that may work well or may be just as bad as a car.

  9. How would people get cars working 200 years after the bombs fell,? if you drop a motorcycle in ancient Egypt they wouldn’t know what to with it

  10. tbh in most places it just seems like a car is more trouble than its worth. everyone would know who you are cause youre the one person with a car. plus, they blow up easily, and raiders tend to shoot first ask later, and theyre everywhere. then you get to the issue of offroading, which is a necessity given the state of the roads in the games, those cars look like they all have no offroad capability at all.

  11. New Fallout and old Fallout are different universes, I don't care what you say. Bethesda can't recreate the original Fallout world for the life of me.

  12. After ww3 alots of manufacturing place where destory. Plus after than war the world will be depopulate so no mass market. In the bronze age than village can maintain than market.

  13. I figure the reasons are after 200 years #1 the tires and ruber insulation on wires would be dry rotted. #2 Seized bearings from not being greased.(people like the gun runners could machine new parts if the had a forge large enough to smelt the raw materials) #3 very few roads are suitable for driving for even short to medium distances. #4 you would be the target of every raider in the waste land

  14. This still doesn’t make too much sense. You can rebuild a 30 foot tall killer robot with nukes and a laser and even build a damned teleporter but a car is completely ridiculous

  15. Gasoline spoils. That's probably issue number 1. Where are we getting this gasoline? Issue number 2, how many of these cars are actually some sort of electric car that run off of a fusion core or something similar? Not that reasonable to expect non-shielded electric cars to survive the EMPs of complete nuclear war. In short, you'd expect SOME ICE (internal combustion engine) vehicles to be around, running off of very small scale refinery operations, there were vehicles in Fallout Tactics for example. However, they'd be exceedingly rare.

  16. This is realistic though cause 200 years of weathering and stagnation isn’t good for operating machines, perhaps initially after the nuclear war cars were more prevalent but as time went on the few cars that would’ve survived all started to just break down or run out of fuel and without large cooperations to manufacture and repair new ones eventually they all died out

  17. You can get a car in fallout 2, but all it does is help you travel to different locations slightly faster that if you did it on foot. I feel like Bethesda would totally put cars in fallout if the engine was built for it.

  18. I always wondered how some cars still had full wheels, and others did not. Wouldn't they rot away after 200 years?

  19. Because Bethesda should have a engine to do this by now. But they are too lazy to change their engine. Hell they don't even have motorcycles drivable.

  20. Sees title The immediate realization they're sitting on a mini nukes worth of explosives that can be easily triggered by heat or bullets? Perhaps would have something to do with it

  21. 1:50 – about 'if these Car-casses could talk', id imagine the First thing on their mind would be "couldja change my Oil? its been about 200 years since your last pitstop….."

  22. Realistically, during the era that most of the games take place most of the inhabited areas would not look as horrible and dilapidated as it does and people would definitely be engineering ground vehicles of some kind.

  23. Because fossil fuels ran out long before the Great War so engines that run on gasoline wouldn’t be a common thing

  24. 4:40
    (Wrote through google translator)
    Because the mind of those in power was сlouded …

    Clouded by some hostile mystical power.

    Which arranged the chain of random events, and then laughed at people,
    picturesquely arranging corpses, mannequins and plush toys, in the places arranged by her tragedies.
    If you study pre-war things, you can pay attention that their design has not changed for a century.
    The impression is that in fact, scientists of Pre-war America did not discover new technologies,
    but were thrown only at the adoption of ALIEN technologies. Endless tests and experiments,
    as a result of not understanding the principles of these technologies and the possible consequences,
    but seeing a clear benefit.
    But to be honest, I think that all this is a consequence of the mistake of designers and screenwriters who overdid with their work.




    Although perhaps they just do not care about the game lore.

  25. america discovering a technology that can solve world problems but using it only for its benefit letting the rest of the world rotten and starting another war based on their sole interests?… definitely believeable 👏🏻

  26. the reason is simple, bethesta game engine so they called it creation engine is trash they can't even animate normal npcs imaging cars moving around

  27. If you speak about motorcycle,well i can see my self drive some light enduro in wastelands,but a car? No way you go anywhere long in that terrain and destroyed or blocked roads,crushed bridges etc

  28. I think the reason why nobody drives them is because that were fucking NUKED and orobably dont work and i'm sure raiders would rsther spend thier time pillaging settlements rsther theb restore the vehicles

  29. Whether they could do that on the engine that they were running or the programming or they just didn't think about it I don't know but it would have been cool to be able to run over a bunch of Raiders

  30. Story wise? The answer is… Oil (or lack of).
    To be honest a better question is why nobody rides or drives ANYTHING (except aircraft now and then). No horses (or mutant equivalents), bikes (motorized or otherwise), or anything else.
    Programming wise? Bethesda won't upgrade their buggy, piece of garbage engine, and Obsidian didn't have time during New Vegas' production.

  31. The real answer is because Bethesda clings to this same shitty game engine. Hell in Fallout 2 you could get a working car, and in Fallout 3 you can see evidence that automobiles are being used, like in Broken Steel you can see a military truck with Brotherhood of Steel crates in the back, meaning that truck was driven there. and in New Vegas and Fallout 4 you make use of working monorails.
    If Bethesda would just nut up and either use or make a new game engine we could get some sick Mad Max style action.

  32. see my question wasnt so much where are the cars but more so where are the brahmin or big horner pulled carts or wagons?

  33. Messed up roads for one. Also, the last thing you want to do in the wasteland is attract attention to yourself and your position where ever you eventually stop, with the blaring engine of a sports car. All it takes is one rocket launcher or a sniper rifle to tell you why it's a bad idea.
    The cars also need coolant, and you can't exactly fill up on that at the nearest Red Rocket. Do you have security for it as well?

  34. Its truly mind blowing that everyone is so perfectly retarded when it comes to "Nuclear Power" that none of you tools seem to know that they are Steam plants.
    HEATING UP WATER AND SENDING IT THROUGH A TURBINE!!! You all think the energy is coming from nuclear "magic" and collected, god knows how.
    Nuclear power will never run things like power armor because the use of radioactive material to heat up water is painfully ignorant and primitive.
    Also all the "power plants" are just a lie. Just An excuse to created bomb material and pretend they are not by pretending they are power plants. "Nuclear battery"? NOPE!!! 1000 times NO!

  35. The Big problem is that Bethesda is easily one of the worst AAA developers in the world, just look at what guys like CdProjekt or Insomniac can do with a Open worls and then come back to any of these assholes games, they Are ugly as a toad and glitchies as a fucking alpha game for a cellphone.

    Bethestda sucks and have been sucking balls since year 2004 when they stole the Fallout franchise from Interplay.

  36. Let’s not pretend that the one and only reason Bethesda won’t put working cars in their game is because their maps are actually quite small, but walking everywhere makes it feel vast. Cars being susceptible to damage is no excuse when I see/hear a helicopter go down every 5-10 mins in FO4 – at least with a car I can find cover. Not to mention modding cars at a workbench or garage would add needed protection, but like I said, cars would make the world feel much smaller.

  37. I like ypur videos but you are really just trying to find reasons to support a end point. If they can make robots they could take that tech and make some ramshackle vehicles.

    Imagine multiple mr. gusty thrusters attached to a old bike frame.

  38. If the roads were still passable, if the cars still ran – what the fuck would you do if the tyres wore out? If it needed brake pads? How would you make the coolant that Red Rocket used to sell?

    Why don’t people in the wasteland drive cars….? Because all the cars are fucked. That’s why.

  39. The lore of usable vehicles is there, the roads are really bad, not sure if anyone takes this into consideration. but the nuclear blast did not do that. its a history that people was driving.

    another thing, cars seem to be striped for parts, eather from doors to whole bodys and engines

  40. Might be an old comment but that statement about Military Tech lasting the longest is incredibly hilarious to any Service member as the term “military grade” the exact opposite of what it means in the civilian world, the cheapest thing the government overpaid for and we are expected to make do.

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