Location: Megaton

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Megaton is the first real town that you'll come into contact with. You'll be greeted outside by a robot named Deputy Weld, plus perhaps a transient named Micky (you'll gain karma if you give him Purified Water). You can also encounter one of four caravan merchants outside of the town. Caravan merchants continuously patrol the major towns in the wasteland, so you can see them in a variety of places.

Inside Megaton you'll meet several colorful people, including Lucas Simms (#1), the mayor / sheriff of the town; Mortiarty (#9), who might help you in the quest Following in His Footsteps; Moira Brown (#6), who will give you the quest Wasteland Survival Guide; and Confessor Cromwell (#5), who is the head of the Children of Atom (#5).

Note: If you get your karma high enough, then once a day a random Megaton resident will come up to you and give you a present (usually a chem or some food).

1 - Lucas Simms' House

You'll meet Lucas Simms when you first enter Megaton. He's the mayor / sheriff of the town, and he'll make sure that you know it. If you ask Lucas about the atomic bomb at the center of the town (#4), then you'll get the option of disarming it. See the quest entry for The Power of the Atom for details. Lucas patrols between the front entrance (Exit A) and the atomic bomb (#4) every hour of every day, so he should be easy to find.

Note: If you ask Lucas about the area outside of Megaton, then he'll add Rivet City to your world map. If you pick a fight with Lucas, then the entire town will turn against you.

Lucas' house starts out locked, but it will unlock if Lucas is killed. You can also pickpocket the house key from Lucas. Inside the house you'll find a Hunting Rifle, a Sledgehammer, and the Bobblehead - Strength doll.

2 - Water Processing Plant

The water processing plant (#2) is the domain of Walter, the resident mechanic. If you ask him what you can do to help out, then he'll tell you about the town's leaky pipes, and he'll ask you to fix them. You'll find three leaks scattered around Megaton (#2a), and you'll need at least 30 points in repair to fix them. The leaky pipes should be easy to spot since they'll be spraying water into the air.

After repairing the pipes, when you return to Walter, he'll reward you with 200 caps and 100 experience points. He'll also make you a deal: if you bring him Scrap Metal then he'll pay you for it. You'll get 10 caps plus 5 experience points for each piece of Scrap Metal that you bring in. You can also just give the Scrap Metal to Walter and receive karma instead.

3 - Megaton Clinic

You'll meet Doc Church inside the clinic. He'll restore your health or remove radiation poisoning from you, provided that you don't mind spending the caps for the services, and he'll also offer to sell you Stimpaks and other chems. If you ask him about the people in town and pass a speech or medicine check, then he'll tell you that Leo Stahl (#16) has a Jet problem, and that he gets high in the water processing plant (#2) every night.

Doc will usually stay at the front table of the clinic, making it easy for you to explore the back of the building and rummage through his stuff. You'll find some random items inside a tool chest and two first aid kits, and you'll find three Stimpaks next to a (broken) computer. Also next to the computer you'll find a holotape that will trigger the quest The Replicated Man when you listen to it.

4 - Undetonated Atomic Bomb

You'll usually find Confessor Cromwell preaching next to the bomb. He's a part of the Children of Atom religious group (#5), which believes that "each single atomic mass in all of creation contains within it an entire universe," and that the atomic war 200 years ago was a "divine event."

If you talk to Cromwell enough, then you'll eventually get a dialogue option to make a donation to the church, which will reward you with karma. You'll be able to donate 10 caps (+10 karma), 50 caps (+50 karma), or 100 caps (+100 karma).

The bomb itself is involved in the quest The Power of the Atom. If you talk to Lucas Simms (#1), then you'll get the option to disarm the bomb. If you talk to Mister Burke (#9), then you'll get the option to detonate the bomb. These options are covered in the quest entry for The Power of the Atom.

5 - Children of Atom

You'll usually find Mother Maya inside the Children of Atom chapel, but she won't tell you anything about the cult. She'll just refer you to Confessor Cromwell outside (#4). If you poke around in the building you can find a couple of useful items to steal (such as a 10mm Pistol). You can also hack into Confessor Cromwell's computer, but his files will just describe his religious beliefs.

6 - Craterside Supply

Craterside Supply is a general store, and Moira Brown, the proprietor, will buy, sell, and repair a variety of items. Moira will also try to recruit you to be her research assistant, and if you agree then you'll trigger the quest Wasteland Survival Guide.

You won't find too much else of interest inside the shop, and what's there will be tough to steal because of Moira's security guard. But if you're patient you can grab a 10mm Pistol from behind the counter, and you can also browse Moira's files on her computer. (The experiments section is especially amusing, and it'll grow over time. Here's an example: "What do super-mutants eat? Research assistants.")

Note: If you steal an item and get caught, then the security guard will attack you but Moira will flee the shop and forget that anything happened. The security guard will drop an Assault Rifle plus more if you kill him.

You can also find a holotape behind the counter. It's one of the many holotapes that can trigger the quest The Replicated Man.

7 - Restrooms

You'll find irradiated water in the two restrooms, but that's about it.

8 - The Armory

This is an actual armory, rather than, say, a shop named The Armory. Lucas Simms (#1) keeps it locked, but if you pick your way in then you'll find lots of guns, including Chinese Assault Rifles and Combat Shotguns, lots of ammo, and a robot named Deputy Steel, who won't be happy to see you.

Besides the guns, you'll also find a safe to pick and a terminal to hack inside the armory. From the safe you can grab a Laser Pistol and more. The terminal will allow you to turn off Deputy Steel and Deputy Weld.

9 - Moriarty's Saloon

You'll meet four people of importance inside Moriarty's Saloon (other people will come and go):
  • Gob. Gob is the bartender. And a ghoul. If you're nice to him, then he'll give you a discount at the bar. He'll also tell you that he's from the Underworld, and he'll ask you to say "hi" to his mother Carol should you ever find yourself there.
  • Nova. Nova is a prostitute. You can rent a room from her for 120 caps, but that's a little pricey considering you don't really get to sleep with her.
  • Moriarty. Moriarty is the owner. You'll have to deal with him (or his computer) in the quest Following in His Footsteps.
  • Mister Burke. Mister Burke will try to hire you to detonate the bomb in the center of the town (#4). See the quest entry for The Power of the Atom for more information.
In the back of the saloon you'll find Moriarty's computer. You can get the password for the computer from the locked cabinet next to it. You can get the key to the cabinet from Moriarty himself (by stealing it from him). You might need to use the computer in the quest Following in His Footsteps. You can also just browse the files on the computer to learn more about the people in Megaton, including that Leo Stahl (#16) has a Jet problem.

10 - Billy Creel's House

Billy lives in this house with Maggie, a girl he rescued from raiders. Some people in the town (read: Mortiarty) will speculate about Billy's motivations, but everything seems to be on the up and up.

For the most part you won't find anything interesting in Billy's house -- just some odd holotapes and some Pre-War Books -- but if you search carefully you might notice a safe on the floor next to the refrigerator. The safe sports a "very hard" lock, but if you have the Child at Heart perk, then you can ask Maggie if she knows any secrets, and she'll tell you the combination: 15-16-23-42 (which might sound familiar to fans of the TV show Lost). Unfortunately, after all that build-up, you won't find anything noteworthy inside the safe, probably just a gun, some ammunition, and some caps.

11 - Common House

The good news is that the common house is where non-residents of Megaton get to sleep. The bad news is that you won't be allowed to sleep there anyway. The good news is that nothing in the house is owned, and so you can pick up anything you want without making anybody mad or losing karma. The bad news is that you probably won't find anything that you'd want to pick up.

12 - Nathan and Manya's House

You'll typically find Manya loitering around outside the house and Nathan wandering around all over the town. Nathan will extol the virtues of the Enclave, "the last remnant of the good ol' USA," and he won't be deterred by anything you might say against it. Manya will tell you a little bit about the history of Megaton. The only thing of interest that you'll find in their house is a holotape involved in the side quest The Replicated Man.

13 - Lucy West's House

Lucy West will ask you to deliver a letter to her family in Arefu. If you agree, then you'll trigger the quest Blood Ties, and Lucy will mark Arefu on your world map. You won't find anything of interest inside Lucy's house.

14 - Mr. Burke's House

Mr. Burke never seems to leave Moriarty's Saloon (#9), so his house will always be locked. But if you pick open the door, then you'll find a Sawed-Off Shotgun plus some other odds and ends inside.

15 - Jericho's House

Jericho is a former raider who now calls Megaton home. If your karma is low enough, then he'll be available as a companion. Inside of Jericho's house, you'll find some useful items, including a 10mm Pistol, a Chinese Officer's Sword, and some Bobby Pins.

16 - The Brass Lantern

The Brass Lantern is run by the Stahl family: Jenny, Andy, and Leo. Andy will spend his days at computer in the back of the restaurant. If you wait until he's gone and then hack the terminal, you'll learn that the restaurant keeps losing money and merchandise, and that Andy thinks Leo is responsible. If you talk to Doc Church at the clinic (#3) or hack Moriarty's computer at the saloon (#9) then you'll find out why -- Leo has a Jet problem, and he lies and steals to support it. You can also use the computer terminal in the restaurant to open up the nearby floor safe. Inside you'll find 300 caps.

Once you've discovered Leo's problem, you'll get a new dialogue option with him -- "I understand you have quite a chem habit" -- which will give you a way to solve the problem or use it to your advantage. If you decide to help Leo and pass a speech check, then Leo will agree to stop using drugs, and he'll give you the key to his desk in the water processing plant (#2), which is where he keeps his stash. Otherwise, all you'll be able to do is use Leo as a chem dealer. Just visit Leo at night in the water processing plant to purchase drugs from him.

17 - Empty House

This house will start out locked and empty, but if you disarm the bomb in the center of the town (#4), then Lucas Simms will give you the key to the house, and you'll be able to use it as your base of operations. The house will start out with some useful amenities, such as a bed, some shelves, a robot butler, and a bobblehead display case, but you'll be able to improve it further by buying (expensive) items and themes from Moira Brown at Craterside Supply (#6):
  • Jukebox. It'll play music.
  • My First Infirmary. It'll restore health, cure crippled limbs, and remove radiation poisoning.
  • My First Laboratory. It'll detoxify you, and you'll also be able to use it to create a random chem (which will keep the lab busy for 24 hours).
  • Nuka-Cola Machine. It'll provide you with Ice Cold Nuka-Cola, and it'll also convert regular Nuka-Cola into Ice Cold Nuka-Cola.
  • Themes. There are six different themes that you can choose from. For the most part they'll just add decorative items to your house, but two of them will also come with skill books. With the Love Machine theme you'll get a copy of Lying, Congressional Style, and with the Scientist theme you'll get a copy of Nikola Tesla and You.
  • Workbench. Just like all the other workbenches in the world, it'll allow you to create items from recipes. Unless you have way more caps than you know what to do with, you can always just use the workbench in Craterside Supply (#6).

  1. Exit to the wasteland.