Fallout canon are the ideas considered to be an official part of the Fallout universe.
Because each game of the Fallout series was created by a different development team and the plot and dialogues were created by mostly different people each time around, there are numerous inconsistencies between them and the canonicity of each game is a point of contention between various Fallout fans.
For example, in case of inconsistency between games, some fans might consider newer entries in the series to override the older ones, while others might consider the original lore to still be "true" and inconsistencies to be mistakes on the part of the later titles' developers.
Since the acquisition of the Fallout franchise by Bethesda Softworks and their development of Fallout 3, Bethesda defines the canon of the Fallout series. Bethesda has thus far refrained from issuing an official statement on what is canon and what is not. The following list is considered to be the most representative of the company's stance on the subject.
Officially released works that form the core of the Fallout franchise and setting.
- Fallout and supplementary materials.
- Fallout 2 and supplementary materials.
- Fallout 3 and supplementary materials.
- Fallout: New Vegas and supplementary materials, including All Roads.
Officially released works, publications and other material (such as developer interviews, Formspring responses, forum posts etc.) that build upon the Fallout setting, but do not belong to the "core" of the franchise. In case of contradicting information, primary sources take precedence.
- Fallout Tactics is a special case: only high level events are canon (and referenced in Fallout 3). As part of the Fallout Tactics release, Fallout: Warfare has the same level of canonicity.
- The Fallout Bible by Chris Avellone. Todd Howard has mentioned it as being part of the source material Bethesda reviewed as part of the Fallout 3 creation process. Emil Pagliarulo has also stated that he used it during development. Finally, several setting elements introduced exclusively in the Bible have been further developed in Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas.
- Note: Chris Avellone is of the opinion that the Bible shouldn't be used as canon and that Bethesda is not limited by its contents. However, the current owner of the franchise and thus, only authority on Fallout canon has not clarified the Bible's status, apart from the statements by Emil Pagliarulo and Todd Howard mentioned above.
- Some elements of Van Buren (the canceled Fallout 3 by Black Isle Studios) were incorporated into Fallout 3 and its add-ons, as well as into Fallout: New Vegas, making them part of the current Fallout canon.
- Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel has been declared as non-canon by Bethesda Softworks.
- Canceled games, such as Van Buren, Project V13, Fallout Extreme, Fallout Tactics 2 and Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel 2 are non-canon, unless otherwise noted.