Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Fallout Clears The Air Over The TV Show's New Vegas Controversy

This article contains spoilers for the "Fallout" TV show

Amazon's "Fallout" TV series is finally here, and it thankfully avoided the tragic mistakes of other video game adaptations. The show perfectly conveys the aesthetic of the games, and from the tiny visual details to the plethora of throwback audio cues, it's clear that everyone working on the series is a real fan of the franchise. The show even explicitly shares continuity with the video games, making it a canonical part of the franchise. Despite that, the show sparked some (likely inevitable) controversy and seriously upset some fans of "Fallout: New Vegas." 


Here's your final warning for big spoilers. The "Fallout" show is set in 2296, which is 15 years after the events of "New Vegas." When the character Lucy is exploring Vault 4, she finds a classroom with a blackboard that appears to be teaching the history of the New California Republic. The blackboard shows something called "The Fall of Shady Sands" taking place in 2277, revealing that the town was apparently nuked either in 2277 or shortly thereafter. "New Vegas" is set in 2281, and some fans immediately jumped on this blackboard for ruining the continuity of the franchise. They claimed that if Shady Sands "fell" in 2277, it would make no sense for the NCR to be in the Mojave during the events of "New Vegas." Thankfully, just as the outrage was reaching a fever pitch, Bethesda design director Emil Pagliarulo stepped into the fray.


Don't panic

According to Pagliarulo, "New Vegas" is still a core part of the "Fallout" canon.

In reality, we didn't really need Pagliarulo to clear the air. In "New Vegas" itself, players are told that the NCR is stretched thin and that it can barely maintain its current territory. We also learn in-game that Shady Sands was just the first capital of the NCR — the capital had moved by 2281, though we weren't explicitly told where or why. If Shady Sands was actually nuked in 2277, the franchise's continuity is still intact, but it's also possible that the residents of Vault 4 call 2277 the "Fall of Shady Sands" in the same way that we now refer to the fall of Rome. The capital was corrupt, and people were leaving it in droves. The mushroom cloud on the blackboard could just be a bit of artistic license. Or maybe it did get nuked, and the NCR really began to buckle. In all this controversy, some fans might have also overlooked Pagliarulo's even bigger reveal that "Fallout Tactics" is canon once more. Sorry, "Brotherhood of Steel," not every "Fallout" game made the cut.


Also, it's worth noting that the ending of "Fallout" Season 1 tells us in no uncertain terms that we're heading to New Vegas next — and judging by our brief look at the city, some serious fighting happened on the Strip after the events of the game.