Fallout TV Series: Who Dropped the Nuclear Bombs to Start the Great War?

In Short
  • In the final episode, it was disclosed that Vault-Tec, as suggested by Mrs. Barb Howard, was the malevolent mastermind behind the nuclear bombings.
  • Vault-Tec believed that by detonating the bomb themselves, they would avoid financial ruin and there wouldn't be a need to coerce individuals into purchasing vaults.
  • According to the Fallout game's lore, it was the Chinese who were initially responsible for the world-ending attacks.

One question that often comes up when talking about the Fallout video games is who dropped the nuclear bombs first. For a long time, it was one of the unanswered mysteries but one of the game’s creators ended that mystery for Fallout fans a while back. But a new twist on this enigma has put it back in the spotlight in the most recent Fallout TV series by Prime Video. So if you were wondering who detonated the nuclear bombs to start this conflict, discover the guilty party behind the Fallout series’ original bomb detonation.

Who Was the First to Nuke America in Fallout?

The first bomb dropped in America
Image Courtesy: Amazon Prime Video/Bethesda

The pilot episode of the Fallout series started with a bang with the nuking of America all over. This led to the birth of the barren wastelands of post-nuclear America, which we explore later on. From that moment to the finale, we can’t stop but think “Who were the warmongers behind the dropping of the first nuclear bombs during the Great War?” An answer to this mystery came in the form of an unexpected twist in the series that caught us completely off-guard.

In the finale of Fallout Season 1, Cooper Howard started to become suspicious of the actions of the Vault-Tec corporation where his wife worked. Hence, he decided to spy on his wife and use a secret microphone to learn the truth. Along with Cooper, we also get a hint about the people who might’ve nuked America to start the great war.

Vault-Tec: The Destroyer of Worlds

Image Courtesy: Amazon Prime Video/Bethesda

As Cooper listened in to the conversation between the Vault-Tec higher officials and the other big heads of the corporations, the truth came to light. The higher-ups continued to debate how much money they could pump out on the brink of the world’s destruction.

They wondered how could they make a significant investment based on a hypothesis. That’s when their insatiable hunger and desire for money led to them going to extreme lengths. That was, well, proven when Mrs. Barb Howard, Cooper’s wife declared, “By dropping the bomb ourselves.”

Vault-Tec knew that it would go bankrupt if the negotiations between the countries resulted in world peace. Therefore, a trillion-dollar company like them won’t let go of the current war among countries. This is when they decided to take the matter into their own hands and dropped the initial bombs on America and forced people to become customers, i.e. Vault Dwellers.

Vault-Tec’s ambitions didn’t stop there as it was later revealed the company was also interested in human experiments, taking control of the world by winning the war using time, etc.

Did the Fallout TV Series Retcon the Original Story in Fallout Games?

Image Courtesy: Bethesda Softworks

If you aren’t familiar with the Fallout games, you must not have been aware of who dropped the first bomb according to the game’s lore. In the game, it is heavily emphasized that it was China who became the destroyer of the world

As China found out that the US was secretly investing in Bio-Weapons, they were cornered to the extreme that they had to start the bombing. This was even further confirmed by one of the game’s co-creators in an interview last year. So, did the showrunners of the Fallout series retcon the whole game’s lore?

I believe there are two ways to go in this scenario. The first is that Vault-Tec themselves pushed the button to nuke America. However, we haven’t seen them do it yet in the series, and it can happen in the follow-up season, Fallout Season 2. This will result in totally shifting the tone and perspective of the Fallout world for long-time fans of the series.

However, the one other route is that Vault-Tec continued to fund the Bio-Weapons program by America. Thus, in line with the series of events that took place in the game’s stories, Vault-Tec’s direct action of backing America created fear among the Chinese and cornered them to the point, that they dropped the bombs. In a way, this makes much more sense and reasonably enriches the history behind the nuking.

Therefore, as of now, in one or another way, Vault-Tec is the mastermind behind the said nuclear attacks. But we have to wait some time to learn how they pulled it off. That said, we would like to hear your thoughts about who dropped the bombs in the comments below.

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