Vault Boy is the name of a character from the Fallout video game series. The series, which now includes four main titles and six spin-offs, started in 1997 with the first Fallout, a role-playing
game in which a nuclear war between the United States and China leads to the devastation of the Earth in 2077. The plot of Fallout starts about a century later, in 2161.
Who is Vault Boy from Fallout? Origin, status, appearance
In the fictional world of Fallout, the nuclear threat was omnipresent even before the outbreak of nuclear war. A large corporation called Vault-Tec built a series of underground shelters across the United States to be prepared in the event of a nuclear disaster. These shelters were called Vaults and the Vault Boy was used as the mascot for all of the company’s promotional materials.
The Vault Boy is a cartoon character that depicts a teenager or young man with blond hair and a broad smile forming a thumbs-up sign with an outstretched hand. He is drawn in an American drawing style of the 1950s and his appearance is based on the Monopoly man. In the Fallout games, the Vault Boy can also be seen with other facial expressions.
The Vault Boy wears a blue and yellow jumpsuit. These jumpsuits were worn by all the people who found refuge in the Vault-Tec shelters after the outbreak of nuclear war. Fallout puts players in a character they created who grew up in such a shelter. Players will therefore encounter Vault Boy right at the beginning of the first game.
Who is Vault Boy from Fallout? Development, change
In the mid-2000s, American video game publisher Bethesda Softworks acquired the rights to Fallout from the original developer studio Interplay Entertainment. The Vault Boy was henceforth featured in further Fallout games, starting with 2008’s Fallout 3, not only as Vault-Tec’s mascot, but also served the video game developers as a meta-figure used to illustrate game mechanics.
Players can upgrade their created character by collecting experience points and equip them with new skills. These so-called attributes and skills are represented in the game by the Vault Boy in a humorous and easy-to-understand way. For example, the skill Strength is expressed by a Vault Boy who has particularly pronounced muscles and shows them off. For weapon abilities, Vault Boy is seen wearing a hard hat and carrying various weapons.
Who is Vault Boy from Fallout? Brand, merchandise, cult figure
Designed by Leonard Boyarsky in the mid-1990s, Vault Boy in its current form is a registered and protected trademark and is owned as intellectual property by Bethesda Softworks and the umbrella company Microsoft. The latter not only market the Vault Boy as a symbol in materials used to advertise Fallout games, but also sell it as a wiggly figure. In addition, various pieces of clothing, mugs and other items are available that show the Vault Boy in various poses and situations.
Regardless of the commercial marketing, the Vault Boy has become a cult figure that represents the exaggerated humor of the entire game series and has gained notoriety beyond the borders of the video game community.