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The Vault:Featured articles/Main page/November

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This page lists The Vault's featured articles shown on the main page in November.

1 November

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The Pitt is an industrial city built upon the ruins of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Following the Great War, survivors established a settlement on the remains of a city at the confluence of rivers. The rivers seem to provide a clear resource, and enough of the city was cleared by the bombs that a new settlement could be established. However, radioactive material and unidentified mutagens mixed into the groundwater, causing mutagenic illnesses. The city's industrial capacity is the result of a slave-based economy, with the Pitt raiders as the slave's masters. These slaves work long hours in unsafe conditions, forging steel in Downtown, while the Pitt raiders reside in Uptown. There have been rumors circulating that the slaves plan to revolt soon, but nothing substantiates these bold claims.

2 November

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Arroyo is a small isolated village in southwest Oregon founded by the Vault Dweller after he was exiled from Vault 13 by the Overseer, and later the home of the Chosen One. When the Vault Dweller wandered the desert in exile, but never moved far from the mountains that shielded the vault from the rest of the world. Some other members of the Vault, who upon hearing of what happened to him, had decided to leave the vault and join his side, followed him soon afterwards. They knew little of the outside world, and would have died if it were not for his assistance. That's when the Vault Dweller removed his vault suit, never to wear it again. Two months later, the Vault Dweller headed north to the to the great canyons with a small group of vault dwellers and wastelanders and founded the small village of Arroyo. Over time, their ragtag group turned into a tribe. The construction of Arroyo was completed on August 18, 2167. In 2241, the Chosen One, Vault Dweller's grandson, was given the task to find a G.E.C.K. to save Arroyo from starvation in the wasteland. His success would lend to the city's rise to power and size in the following decades.

3 November

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Talon Company is a mercenary outfit active in the Capital Wasteland. Even as far as mercenaries go, these men and women are vicious and are said to be taking any contract, especially those from which other mercenaries companies decline; they have absolutely no reservations about their targets. A job is a job: in exchange for the right sum of money, they are ready to kill anyone without giving it a second thought. They are led by Commander Jabsco and operate out of Fort Bannister. They are engaged in a large battle with the super mutants in and around the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., though it is unknown why they are besieging it.

4 November

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Caravan is a popular card game among merchants and caravaneers on the West Coast, where players bet various currencies and stakes are often high. The game is based on strategy rather than luck, so it would never be found in the swanky casinos of New Vegas. At least 30 cards of any value are required to play, although the deck cannot have repeats of card values from the same set. Caravan is played between two players each building three opposing caravans (or "bids") of numbered cards. The goal is to outbid the opponent in all of the three caravans by keeping the number of points on each of above 20, but below 27 while preventing the opponent from doing the same. The value of cards placed in a caravan must be placed in ascending or descending order. Number cards add to the caravan's value equivalent to their number, but face cards transfer special effects onto the card they are played upon. A player's caravan is considered sold when the value of its cards is over 20 and under 27.

5 November

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The Cloud is an expansive rusty blanket of noxious smog that covers the Sierra Madre. It was first discovered when a pipe broke during the construction of the Sierra Madre; no one quite knew what the toxin was, but swiftly ordered the use of hazmat suits during construction from then on after witnessing the damaging effects. These hazmat suits would prove to be futile though, as toxins brimming with heavy metals slowly and inconspicuously corroded the suits and leaked in, eventually creating the ghost people that shuffle around the Villa. Only the Sierra Madre's founder, Frederick Sinclair, was aware that Big MT, a United States military contractor, was using the resort as a testing ground, but even he remained unaware of the nature of the experiments.

The smog is still as dangerous as it was centuries ago. Even the slightest contact will ravage normal dermal and alveolar tissues; only ghost people can wander inside the Cloud without succumbing to injury.

6 November

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Point Lookout tribals comprise a tribe of Punga worshipers in Point Lookout. Led by Jackson, the tribe cultivates, worships and consumes the punga fruit at the old Ark & Dove Cathedral. What the punga cannot provide, they acquire by trading it with outsiders. The tribe believes in leaving material possessions behind, seeing as how the physical world has been destroyed, and instead concentrate on reaching astral planes of existence. As such, Jackson considers Professor Calvert to have reached a far higher level of enlightenment as he has left his physical body behind completely. He obeys the Professor's every order, which is why the normally peaceful tribals have recently taken to assaulting Calvert Mansion.

7 November

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Bighorners are mutated bighorn sheep that inhabit temperate and mountainous regions of the Mojave Wasteland. Several settlements, like Goodsprings and Jacobstown have also domesticated the animals and use them for their horns, meat, and hides. However, according to Easy Pete, a rancher in Goodsprings, they are a terrible choice for pack animals as "they just lie down until you take [the load] off." In the wild, bighorners form small herds of three to seven, with a couple bulls, ewes and calves in a herd. They are quite docile until they are provoked, at which point they headbutt aggressors with their large horns and are capable of sending them back several meters.

8 November

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Night stalkers are fascinating creatures that wander the Mojave Wasteland. It is a mystery where they came from (at least in the Mojave), but Dr. Borous of Big MT confirms that night stalkers are genetic hybrids of rattlesnakes and coyotes created in the Z-9 Crotalus DNA preservation lab on a dare from Dr. Calis. After escaping the facility and the Big MT crater altogether, they created dens in the many caves of the Mojave Desert. They are particularly dangerous because they travel in packs of up to ten, are quick and have a devastatingly venomous bite. Fortunately, their blood makes up part of an antivenom, which aids in neutralizing their venom.

9 November

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Doctor Klein is a think tank scientist and leader of the Think Tank at Big MT. He is the chief head researcher of logistical operations and idea-ology, but this title is purely superficial. Klein is very much overconfident in his intelligence, and shows absolutely no grasp of the purpose or function of the advanced technology he tasks the Courier in retrieving. In addition, he holds his colleagues in low regard, often ignoring their often warranted advice. He used to be a colleague of Doctor Mobius at one point, but they had a severe falling out and Mobius left to the X-42 robo-warfare facility after destructively meddling with his colleagues programming. For this, Klein has developed an intense hatred for, but is also quite terrified of, Dr. Mobius.

10 November

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Cyrus is a possible Initate in Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel. He grew up in a semi-tribal farming community, which had its share of problems with raiders, radscorpions, and the like, but was finally devastated by Unity when he was just a boy. So, like a lot of adrift-in-the-wilderness youths, he wandered briefly, hearing stories about the defeat of the mutant army and the forces that opposed them. It was inevitable that Cyrus would eventually go to join the Brotherhood of Steel. As a soldier, Cyrus is a strange combination of idealist and bad-ass and, in short, is the modern-day post-apocalyptic knight.

11 November

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The Divide is a hostile land ravaged by frequent earthquakes and violent windstorms. Before the Great War, this area was home to Hopeville, a military town, and Ashton, a missile base. The war apparently took the military here by surprise, as the ICBMs never left their missile silos. The landscape remained quiet for two centuries before a small survivalist community established itself in the area, created by the Courier. The settlement became so successful that it grabbed the attention of the New California Republic, looking for prospective supply lines; the NCR's involvement in the Divide caught on with Caesar's Legion, who attempted to cut off the supply line. It was during this time the Courier brought an unknown package to the Divide. The package contained an activated ICBM detonator; when this device was close enough, it remote linked with the ICBM computers, sending a signal to the dormant nuclear missiles lying in the silos beneath the ground. The missiles began detonating one after another, splitting the earth with massive earthquakes and destroyed the settlement. Ulysses, a former Legion frumentarii, later demanded that the Courier return home to see what they did and give closure to the ordeal.

12 November

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Vault 0, unlike most vaults involved in the vault experiment, was not an experiment in human behavior. It was constructed by expanding and reinforcing the Cheyenne Mountain Complex in Colorado and was by far the largest of the underground vaults. If the interiors were so designed, Vault 0 could easily support a population of well over 100,000 people. Many of the areas that comprise the massive interior layout of Vault 0 were originally designed to be the size of (and were often compared to) aircraft hangars, warehouses and factories; these zones were for the construction of various machines that were ostensibly designed to serve the vault dwellers. The vault was intended to be a place where the geniuses of the pre-War United States could be kept in cryogenic stasis, their brains extracted and frozen for the duration of their "residence" in this vault. They were hooked up to a huge supercomputer called the Calculator, which was supposed to function in collaboration with the brains of these pre-War geniuses to design and nurture an ideal human society in a post-War U.S. by educating the survivors and residents. However, the Calculator became a menace to the outside world during its efforts to help the vault dwellers.

13 November

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The Four States Commonwealth is one of the thirteen commonwealths of the pre-War United States of America, comprised by Utah, Colorado, Arizona and New Mexico. In 2247, Arizona served as the birthplace of Caesar's Legion, a ruthless autocracy that quickly rose to dominate the majority of the Four States region. Despite this, the region was badly fragmented with towns fighting each other just to survive. While much of Utah's cities were destroyed, the wilderness remained largely unspoiled and many trade routes pass through and into Utah. The southern and eastern regions of Colorado are controlled by the Legion, but the Midwestern Brotherhood of Steel also holds some influence in the state. New Mexico has been largely ignored; Caesar conquered it and moved on.

14 November

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Dean Domino, also credited as the King of Swing, is a famous pre-War lounge singer. He and his orchestra gave performances across the United States and Europe and was invited to play at the Sierra Madre, but found himself in the shadow of the casino's founder, Frederick Sinclair. Soon, Domino found himself consumed with jealousy and he became single-mindedly determined to put Sinclair "in his place" by taking everything from him that he held dear. His final gig was to be at The Tampico, but all that changed when the bombs dropped; Domino survived the apocalypse and the casino's security systems, but refused to let go of the Sierra Madre's treasure, becoming obsessed with it. Slowly ghoulifying, he would spend the next two hundred years plotting his grand heist. This worked into Father Elijah's plans, who snapped a slave collar on the ghoul and forced Domino to crack the vault for him. Although Domino's ability to obtain the treasure may have diminished with this development, his lust for it most certainly has not.

15 November

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Fortification Hill is the primary military base Caesar's Legion holds in the Mojave Wasteland. Resting on the east bank of the Colorado River, it gives an excellent vantage point over the New California Republic-controlled wasteland and serves as a temporary position where Caesar plans his Legion's upcoming assault on Hoover Dam. The Fort is composed of Caesar's tent at the top, an arena below and soldier and slave tents at the base of hill. Access to the camp is very limited to non-legionnaires; the only way to get there is by taking a ferry from Cottonwood Cove, usually with an invitation. Even after journeying there, all contraband items, including weapons and chems, are seized from the visitor.

16 November

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General Constantine Chase was a highly-decorated pre-War United States Army General who commanded the United States troops during the Anchorage Reclamation in Alaska. He was responsible for commissioning the Liberty Prime project to RobCo Industries and General Atomics International as well as the Anchorage Reclamation simulation from Virtual Strategic Solutions. Chase was also responsible for green lighting the unofficial implementation of a military Chinese invasion training protocol in Vault 112's Tranquility Lane simulation, at the request of Dr. Stanislaus Braun, but was also at the center of a scandal that came to light involving the drugging of American soldiers with Psycho. It is assumed that Fort Constantine is named after him.

17 November

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Fire ants are mutated giant ants that have recently swarmed over the settlement of Grayditch. They were accidentally created by a scientist named Doctor Weston Lesko. He was attempting to return giant ants to their normal size through genetic manipulation, making the ants exponentially smaller over generations, but as he reasons, one small tweak of an error has left the ants with a completely different mutation. The fact that he used F.E.V. in his experiments in order to produce a quicker result may also help explain the "error". This error, as their name suggests, allows them to project fire from their mouth, what Lesko calls pyrosis.

18 November

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Little Lamplight is a settlement in the Capital Wasteland, populated entirely by children. The cave system was once a tourist attraction, but after the Great War, a school group visiting the caverns on a field trip had to remain inside or die from nuclear fallout. As the adult chaperones slowly died off, the children become independent and created their own society based on the cultivation and trade of the radiation-absorbing fungus that grows in the cave. As a policy, inhabitants must leave Little Lamplight on their sixteenth birthday, with no exceptions. In order to access Vault 87, one must go through Little Lamplight's Murder Pass, a cavern system dominated by super mutants.

19 November

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Arcade Gannon is a scientist with the Mojave chapter of the Followers of the Apocalypse and researches potential medical uses for naturally occurring compounds found in the desert. He is secretive of his past, because he's actually the son of an Enclave officer. After the sacking of Navarro and untimely death of his father, Arcade came to bond more with his mother and de facto family, the Enclave Remnants. As both the New California Republic and Brotherhood of Steel hunted down the Enclave, they fled east into the fringes of N.C.R. territory.

Though Arcade attempts to put the past behind him, he continues to dwell on the shared experiences of his family and his father's old unit, hoping that some day he can repay the Remnants for their unwavering loyalty to both him and his mother. Should he walk the Mojave with the Courier, he will come to grips with his past and safely reunite with the Enclave Remnants.

20 November

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ED-E, pronounced "Eddie," is a replication of Primm's eyebot duraframe subject E, but is found in the Divide. The eyebot was manufactured by the Hopeville Missile Silo's automatic engineering facilities by remote scanning the ED-E that passed through the Divide on its way to the Mojave. Eddie contains the codes which Ulysses needs to activate the remaining nuclear warheads at the Divide, allowing him to unleash destruction on the Mojave Wasteland, but can also have its capabilities upgraded with several salvageable eyebot parts in the ruins of the Divide. It has a unique personality and all of the original eyebot's memories up to the time it passed through the Divide, which it shares with the player at various points through recorded audio logs. Eddie seeks to emulate his robotic idol, Ralphie, in his journey to Navarro and helps the Courier make their way through the Divide.

21 November

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The New California Republic (often abbreviated NCR) is a federation of towns in California and the surrounding regions. Since 2241, the Republic has consisted of five states: Shady, Los Angeles, Maxson, Hub, and Dayglow. The capital city of Shady Sands, which was the original small settlement began expanding in 2161, was renamed to New California Republic in 2186. By 2281, the NCR aims to expand into the Mojave Wasteland and add New Vegas as its sixth state to have complete control over Hoover Dam, but residents of New Vegas are slow to give up their independence. The NCR is arguably the largest known faction of the post-War United States with over 700,000 citizens (by 2241) and maintains the largest standing military.

22 November

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Mark O'Green is a video game designer that wrote most talking head dialogues in Fallout and Fallout 2 in addition to working on Project V13, a canceled Fallout Online, and being the principal author of The Armageddon Rag, the Fallout Online newsletter. O'Greene has been a Designer, Producer, and Executive Producer for Interplay Entertainment, as well as Sony Online, Sierra/Verant and others. He has a degree in Behavioral Science, has been a fighter pilot in the United States Air Force, and is a member of SIGMA, a group of science fiction writers founded to consult the government and non-governmental organizations on possible future attacks; he is obviously not your average game designer.

23 November

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Ghouls are mutated humans that have been exposed to small doses of radiation over a prolonged amount of time, which makes them actively rot and, paradoxically, greatly extends their lifespan. Ghouls are found in all corners of the wasteland and most of them predate the Great War, due to semi-adequate fallout shelters; they were enough to protect against the initial explosion, but not enough to protect from nuclear fallout. As ghouls take on more and more radiation, they eventually turn feral and attack anything that is not their own on sight. Because of this, many humans are prejudiced towards ghouls, and ghouls are prejudiced toward humans because of their prejudice toward ghouls. For this reason, they typically live in exclusive ghoul communities, having little to do with humans.

24 November

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The Citadel is the headquarters of the Brotherhood of Steel in the Capital Wasteland, built into the ruins of the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia. The ruling council of the Brotherhood of Steel, based in the Lost Hills bunker in South California, decided to send a contingent of soldiers to the East Coast, to recover any and all advanced technology from Washington, D.C.; they found the Pentagon to be mostly destroyed, but the lower levels remained intact, and contained enough pre-War technology and weaponry to keep Brotherhood forces going indefinitely. But there was something else, as well... a technological marvel that, if restored, could help the Brotherhood rebuild a strength and reputation that had been declining steadily for years.

25 November

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Currencies of all kinds are used in the post-Great War world. Civilization may have crumbled, but the necessity to acquire goods and supplies did not. Bartering only got you so far, so a common medium of exchange was needed to get past this. Scavenged bottle caps from nooks and crannies of the wastes soon became the most popular and accepted medium of exchange, but those that sought to bring civilization back to the Old World economic standard created their own currencies, which serve as the money within that particular region or faction. Although bartering still exists, exchanging currencies is usually simpler, quicker and more accepted.

26 November

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Colonel Augustus Autumn is a commanding officer of the Enclave Armed Forces in 2277. Following the destruction of the oil rig off the California coastline and the dissolution of their chain of command, Autumn's father led high ranking Enclave officials, which included his son, across the continent to Raven Rock in the Capital Wasteland, by order of the New president, John Henry Eden. Colonel Autumn's goal in the Capital Wasteland is to secure the Jefferson Memorial and find how to get Project Purity up and running. When the Enclave controls the water supply, nothing will be able stand in the way of the "true" government of America and deter them from their goals.

27 November

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Goodsprings is a small town in the eastern Mojave Wasteland. The towns doctor, Doc Mitchell, is responsible for saving the life of the Courier after they were shot twice in the head and left in Goodspring's cemetery. Until recently, the town was a quiet one settled under a New California Republic grant in order to develop a low-risk mining environment near a reliable source of potable water, the Goodsprings source. Trade in the town has dried up because of the recent prison break at NCR Correctional Facility and the deathclaw infestation of nearby Quarry Junction. Aside from the lack of trade, Goodsprings is also repeatedly threatened by the Powder Gangers being led by Joe Cobb who is looking for a caravaneer hiding somewhere in town.

28 November

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Joshua Graham is a Mormon missionary, co-founder of Caesar's Legion and its first Legate, known as the Malpais Legate. Following the defeat of the Legion at the First Battle of Hoover Dam, Caesar covered Graham in pitch, set him ablaze and threw him down the Grand Canyon as a message that failure, even at the highest of ranks, is not tolerated. However, Graham miraculously survived and came to be known as the "Burned Man" in folk legend; his survival is played down by the higher ranks of the Legion, but lower ranking legionaries and slaves speak of the Burned Man as if he is a vengeful spirit, waiting to return. Stripped of all power and glory, Graham returned to New Canaan and was welcomed with open arms, but Caesar wished the very memory of Graham be removed from history and ordered the White Legs, a prospective tribe seeking assimilation into the Legion, to burn the Mormon town to the ground. Upon learning of the city's destruction, the Burned Man became the acting war-chief of the Dead Horses of Zion Canyon, aiming to deliver God's wrath upon the White Legs.

29 November

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ZAX is a series of advanced supercomputers capable of learning, independent thought and creativity, with added error insertion to improve its variance in experience and learning capability. Developed by Vault-Tec Corporation, ZAX 1.0, the original prototype, went online in 2054. Initially a prototype of some of the systems designed to govern the vaults, it was given to the federal government to help the Department of Energy collect resource data. Within a year, it was taken by the American military for plague and tactical research; one version of the machine, ZAX 1.2, was constructed for the defense contractor West Tek. The process of programming became largely irrelevant as the ZAX units are capable of independent learning. Since the first real artificial intelligence is known to have been created in 2059, ZAX might have not originally been truly self-aware, but all known ZAX units achieved self-awareness eventually after that date.

30 November

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The cryo lab is a sector on board Mothership Zeta. Designed for flash freezing organic test subjects, the lab is largely a storage facility full of cryo-pods that hold humans, super mutants, and feral ghouls. This large collection ensures that the aliens always have a steady supply of test subjects or research material, including Elliot Tercorien's squad mates from Anchorage. Within the cryo lab, Tercorien devises a way to modify the cryogenic solution into a portable and potentially effective weapon in the form of grenades and mines.