Y'all heard about that crazy kid from Vault 101...
”— Three Dog talking about the Lone Wanderer
The Lone Wanderer is the player character in Fallout 3.
The Lone Wanderer was born on July 13, 2258 to James and Catherine at the Jefferson Memorial, where they worked on Project Purity. Catherine died shortly after giving birth, due to cardiac arrest of an unknown cause. James suspended the project and traveled to Vault 101 via Megaton (with the help of Star Paladin Cross). The Lone Wanderer's childhood is kept a secret in order to shelter the child from the outside world, and to keep up the pretense of the social experiment for which the Vault was constructed.
For 18 years, the Lone Wanderer lived in Vault 101 without incident, but in 2277, 200 years after the Great War, James disappeared without any explanation. The young Lone Wanderer, with the help of Amata Almodovar, leaves the safety of the Vault to look for James in the ruins of Washington, D.C.. In order to find him, the Lone Wanderer must travel across the wasteland following James' trail. The Lone Wanderer visits all of the locations that James had visited and either searches for clues or speaks to the people he encountered to find out where he went next. After finding him, Project Purity is put back on track, but the reunion is cut short when the Enclave commander Augustus Autumn arrives and demands ownership of the Project. James is unwilling to allow the project to fall into the hands of the Enclave and sacrifices himself by filling the control chamber of Project Purity with deadly amounts of radiation, in hopes to kill Colonel Autumn and the other soldiers. Colonel Autumn, however, survives. The Enclave takes control of the project, but are unable to operate it.
After fleeing from the Jefferson Memorial building with the remainder of Project Purity staff, The Lone wanderer takes refuge within the Citadel where The Lone Wanderer enlists the help of the Brotherhood of Steel to retrieve a G.E.C.K. from Vault 87 for use in a soon-to-be-recaptured Project Purity. Because the G.E.C.K. is in a highly irradiated chamber, the Lone wanderer must then choose whether to enlist the help of Fawkes, a friendly super mutant, or face the deadly amounts of radiation alone. Once the G.E.C.K. is retrieved, the Lone Wanderer is captured by Colonel Autumn and taken to Raven Rock. There, President Eden presents the Wanderer with a canister of modified FEV for insertion into Project Purity, which would poison any mutated creature drinking the purified water. It is unknown whether the Wanderer will obey this instruction, but it is known that Raven Rock is destroyed and Project Purity is recaptured with the aid of Liberty Prime. There, after finally stopping Colonel Autumn, the Wanderer and Sentinel Lyons are faced with the dilemma of who would enter the radiation-flooded chamber and activate the project. Once the purifier is activated the wasteland is finally given the greatest gift of all, fresh, clean drinking water.
The Lone Wanderer awakens two weeks later to face the consequences of their decisions so far and joins the Brotherhood in their mission to distribute the newly-purified water and to hunt the Enclave remnants. This hunt would eventually put the Wanderer in control of an orbital strike. The Lone Wanderer may either use it to destroy the Citadel or the Enclave Mobile Base Crawler. Before or after the events of Fallout 3, they go to various places such as The Pitt, Point Lookout, Mothership Zeta and participate in a simulation of the Anchorage Reclamation.
- The Lone Wanderer is named "Albert" in Fallout 3 previews. This may be a reference to Albert Cole, one of the possible identities of the Vault Dweller.
- The Lone Wanderer in promotional images is shown as being a Caucasian male with brown hair.
- The Lone Wanderer does not have any stated relation with the protagonists of the other Fallout games.
- July 13, 2258, the birthday of the Lone Wanderer, is a Tuesday.
- Their name is somewhat ironic. Though they are called the Lone Wanderer, they are the first player character to be seen with a companion in the final cutscene unlike in Fallout, Fallout 2, or Fallout: New Vegas.
The Lone Wanderer appears only in Fallout 3.
 Behind the scenes
- The Lone Wanderer's birth date, 07/13/2258, is a Biblical reference to Micah 7:13: "Not withstanding the land shall be desolate because of them that dwell therein, for the fruit of their doings."
- The Lone Wanderer as a baby was voiced by Jake Howard, the son of Todd Howard, on his 1st birthday.
The birthplace of the Lone Wanderer
The Lone Wanderer walking through the Capital Wasteland
The Lone Wanderers' parents (cut content)
- ↑ Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition p.82: "Born to mother (Catherine) and father (James) inside the Jefferson Memorial, and moved to Vault 101 shortly afterward with the help of acting nurse Madison Li, this mysterious roamer has been spotted at numerous locations throughout the Capital Wasteland, and as far away as Point Lookout. Great tales of the Wanderer's combat prowess, interesting methods of problem-solving, and great cunning in the purchase of strategy guides to help navigate this great wilderness have been whispered both far and wide. The Wanderer's exploits can be heard by turning in to Galaxy News Radio."