Fallout vault mapper faces their biggest challenge yet with the map for the canceled game that would have been Fallout 3

Fallout 3
(Image credit: Bethesda)

Using their geography education, some in-game maps, and a screenshot from the recent live-action series, one Fallout superfan has been piecing together the approximate location of every single known vault and placing them onto a map of the USA. And now, a canceled version of Fallout 3 has filled in even more information. 

Modder and, now, mapper Tunnelsnakesfool embarked on the mapping mission after the Amazon Prime Fallout TV show debuted with clues that pointed to several vaults and vault locations. The creator then used geographic software ArcGIS Pro to transplant the show's screenshot into a real map that could show you how close you are to a vault in an alternate, even more apocalyptic reality. 

After filling out the map with major locations and state lines for easier reading, they then geolocated West Coast vaults using the in-game maps from the first two Fallouts, which have been cutely tilted to fit on the huge, growing map seen below. Vault locations from the other RPGs in the series have also been jotted down. 

Rather than continuing with canon games, the mapper instead went back into the archives and used a leaked map from Van Buren (codename for one of Black Isle Studio's canceled Fallout 3 projects) as a reference. The Van Buren map makes up a sizeable chunk of the complete vault locator, stretching from New Mexico to Wyoming, but the mapper said: "Van Buren is probably going to be my favorite Fallout map I have pulled into the [project] thus far… their base map was the most accurate."

Next up, Tunnelsnakesfool is turning their gaze toward Fallout Tactics and the currently unmapped East Coast vaults, so you can soon complete a national trail walking past the locations where vaults would appear if our future was built by game developers. 

Todd Howard said the Fallout TV show is so detailed, he even found a vault report on set. 

Freelance contributor

Kaan freelances for various websites including Rock Paper Shotgun, Eurogamer, and this one, Gamesradar. He particularly enjoys writing about spooky indies, throwback RPGs, and anything that's vaguely silly. Also has an English Literature and Film Studies degree that he'll soon forget.