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From The Vault

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race: Computer
affiliation: Vault 0
role: Overseer
location: Calculator's Lair (Vault 0)
appearances: Fallout Tactics
missions: Calculator's Lair
The following is based on Fallout Tactics and some details might contradict canon.

The Calculator was the computer that controlled Vault 0, serving as its overseer. Unlike the ZAX computers, it was not a real artificial intelligence, but rather a cyborg, because it was connected with several human brains.





According to official information, one advantage the Calculator had over normal computers is the electro-organic linking terminal. The tests concluded that the CPU can share tasks and receive data from pseudo cryogenic stored brains that were maintained in an oxygenated tank.

These brains were initially that of lab rodents, but calculations eventually indicated that human brains could be preserved in the same fashion. The brains were fed specifically formulated nutrients to sustain suspended life. In turn, they assisted the Calculator's CPU in Vault management, including life support, food production and distribution, Vault 0 defenses, and "pacification protocol". The brains of eight most promising humans of Vault 0 were chosen to become one with the Calculator:

  • Evangelist
  • Porn Star
  • Lawyer
  • Doctor
  • Game Designer
  • Artist
  • Scientist
  • Politician

The neural network was also meant to assist in Vault 0's primary function: to initiate Mankind's post-war rebirth. When outside temperature, radiation levels, and poison particle counts returned to acceptable levels, Vault 0 was to remotely activate the Exodus protocol, which would initialize the integration of all Vault Dwellers onto the planet's surface. However, it was only a plan that never came true. The Calculator becomes corrupted due to fatal errors in his CPU and his data storage systems - human brains. The cybernetic machine becomes a mad personality, whose goals, while formulated as they are originally intended, now turn to a rather homicidal side. The problem was that the Calculator was entrusted with an army of robots that it should use.

Much of the Vault 0 population were killed by the Calculator, while those who survived became brain damaged due to the lack of backup life support systems to their cryogenic chambers. Ironically enough, such systems were scrapped during streamlining of the vault's construction, to be replaced by leisure facilities and provide pay raises to senior committee members. Taking full control of the Vault 0, the Calculator proceeded to await the beginning of the Exodus protocol.

Menace from the West

The Exodus protocol could also be triggered by a breach of the Vault defenses, as was the case when the Eastward-fleeing super mutants stumbled upon the Vault 0. It awoke the Calculator completely. Now, the cybernetic being proceeded to its "pacification protocol", considering all life to be its enemies. The Calculator activated its nuclear reactor in Buena Vista and began to construct many robot manufacturing and repair facilities across the wastes. Soon, all of the Chicago region was full of rumors of a Menace from the West, coming to exterminate all life.

The Calculator discovered a useful ally in a captured Midwestern Brotherhood of Steel General named Simon Barnaky, who ultimately began to see the machine as the only hope of restoring order. Barnaky was transformed into a humanoid Robobrain and began his service to the Calculator as its adviser and guardian.

Although the Calculator had begun rapid expansion and had attempted to eliminate the Midwestern Brotherhood of Steel, Vault 0 was breached by Brotherhood forces led by the warrior. There, the warrior defeated the robots and Simon Barnaky's new form, and entered the Calculator chamber. The eight brains that are crucial to the Calculator were destroyed, so the Calculator required a new brain to continue to function. From here on, the warrior had three choices.

  • Merge with the Calculator, taking control of it and using its resources for the Brotherhood.
  • Allow Simon Barnaky to merge with the Calculator, which will result in a new Brotherhood of Steel and anti-mutant regime.
  • Do nothing, allowing the Calculator to shut down forever, or destroy it using weapons.

In Fallout 3, it is revealed that Midwestern Brotherhood of Steel has fallen to hard times, so it is believed that the canonic choice the warrior made is the third one.

Calculator's robots

The Calculator

Behind the scenes

  • Incidentally, the story of Tactics went through a lot of revisions. For example, my original concept for the main villain, the Calculator, was for it to be a completely unfeeling automated system, not even a computer so much as an engine designed to tick over and perform certain tasks after doomsday. Totally implacable, and therefore the fault of everything bad that happens is still in the hands of the humans. - Ed Orman (NMA interview)

Mission walkthrough

Calculator's Lair
chapter: Chapter 6
location: Vault 0
given by: General Dekker
reward: Ending
main objectives: Destroy the Calculator's brains
optional objectives: Decide the fate of the Calculator
previous: Vault 0

When your squad reaches the Calculators room the Calculator will raise indestructible barriers around itself. You will need to destroy the brains near it to access the first door near the Calculator (before destroying the brains read solutions 1 and 2). Behind it you will find some robots and another brain. If you destroy that brain the second door opens. There are three such doors each containing a brain. If all the brains are destroyed the barriers lower allowing you to access the Calculator and listen to its offer. There are four ways to end this mission each resulting a different ending cinematic.

  1. Sacrifice your character to fix the Calculator with good karma. Since destroying the brains in the calculators room gives you a lot of negative karma you need to place explosives near the brains so you are not attacking them directly (This presumes you already had good karma at the beginning of this mission).
  2. Sacrifice your character to fix the Calculator with negative karma. Destroy the brains by just shooting them, each will give you negative karma and of course will open the necessary doors.
  3. Do nothing and wait or destroy the calculator by attacking it. Brains can be destroyed any way you like (the Calculator can be destroyed without alerting it, it can be shot from outside the room avoiding the three rooms with brains).
  4. Convince General Barnaky to sacrifice himself. This only requires you to talk to him after the Calculator has made the offer.


  • One of the Calculator's side objectives was to finish construction of The Hellion, a prototype battle airship.
  • The Binary on the Calculators Screen reads 010011001 01001011100 001000100 01100100011, which roughly translates to: L¥Â##.

Appearances in games

The Calculator appears only in Fallout Tactics, where it is the main enemy of the Brotherhood.

Related holodisks

Antagonists in the Fallout games
Fallout Tactics missions
Artificial Intelligence in the Fallout games

This article uses material from the "Calculator" article on the Fallout wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.


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