When Does the Fallout TV Show Take Place on the Timeline?

fallout prime video show poster
Credit: Prime Video

fallout prime video show poster
Credit: Prime Video

With the Fallout show confirmed to be canon to the game universe, game fans and new viewers alike will want to know where the game sits within the canonical timeline. Fortunately, its actual position in the timeline is easy to determine.

Todd Howard had confirmed early on that he and the rest of Bethesda Game Studios are treating the new Fallout live-action adaptation by Prime Video as canon.

Fans, on the other hand, are protective over any new property that encroaches on the franchise’s territory, so it’s essential to understand where the show is in relation to the game’s timeline.

The Sino-American War

This is the catalyst of everything that has happened in the Fallout series. The Sino-American war is an endgame conflict between the United States of America and the People’s Republic of China over resources that have become scarce.

This war ended with the dropping of thermonuclear bombs that Cooper Howard witnessed in Los Angeles in 2077, the same year Lucy’s descendants entered Vault 33.

All of the games took place after the bombs were dropped, an event that is referred to in-game as “The Great War.”

Timeline of the Games

2102 - The first Vault Dwellers emerge, leading to the events of Fallout 76.

2161 - The Vault 13 overseer sends the Vault Dweller and others to the Wasteland in Fallout 1.

2241 - The Chosen One leaves Arroyo for their mission to find G.E.C.K. in Fallout 2.

2258 - The Lone Wanderer leaves Vault 101 in Fallout 3.

2287 - The Sole Survivor (Nora or Nate) awakens in Vault 111 in Fallout 4.


This is where the TV show takes place. Nine years after the conclusion of the Sole Survivor’s journey in Fallout 4, Lucy’s Vault 33 and the neighboring Vault 32 are attacked by Lee Moldaver’s Raiders, triggering the events of the show.

Now that the show’s place in the franchise timeline has been firmly established, it’s time to enjoy the live-action adaptation that the showrunners have referred to at one point as both Fallout 5 and Fallout 6.

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