The Commonwealth

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This page is about the location of Fallout 4. For the 13 pre-War U.S. commonwealths, see United States.
For European organization of states, see European Commonwealth.
The Commonwealth
Icon landmark
part ofMassachusetts
factionsBrotherhood of Steel
Commonwealth Minutemen
Commonwealth Police
The Institute
Super mutants
Synth Retention Bureau
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Gametitle-FO3Gametitle-FO3 TPGametitle-FO3 BSGametitle-FO3 PLGametitle-FO4

The Commonwealth itself is nothing but a war-ravaged quagmire of violence and despair. Inside the sealed environment of the Institute, however... but the Institute's affairs are none of your concern. Your undeveloped mind couldn't even begin to comprehend what we've accomplished.

Dr. Zimmer

The Commonwealth is what is left of the pre-War American state of Massachusetts in New England.[1] While traditionally called a commonwealth in itself, before the Great War, Massachusetts was also part of the New England Commonwealth of the United States in the alternate history of the Fallout universe. Most of it is a "war-ravaged quagmire of violence and despair" like much of the rest of the former United States, but it is also where Boston and the mysterious Institute are located.


Little is known about the Institute other than that the scientists working in the sealed environment possess highly advanced technology and technological skills. The Institute has created true artificial intelligence (A.I.) and is capable of manufacturing androids, also referred to as "synths" - short for "synthetic humans".

Another organization active within the Commonwealth, the Railroad, functions in direct opposition to the Institute. Named in honor of the Underground Railroad, the Railroad's mission is the rescue and salvation of synthetic humanoids primarily, though enslavement as a whole is also fought against.

There is a special branch of the Commonwealth police called the Synth Retention Bureau. It is tasked with recovering synths that attempt to escape from the Institute.

There are more factions in play than The Institute, however. Preston Garvey leads a group, presently fighting against the vicious bands of raiders which plague the area. The Sole Survivor may find Garvey and his men near Concord after taking heavy losses in a raider skirmish.

The Brotherhood of Steel is confirmed to have a presence in the vicinity of Boston as well, and own an armoured airship named Prydwen that lurks the skies of Boston, though it is yet unclear what part they might play in the Commonwealth's balance of power.



The Commonwealth appears only in Fallout 4, and is mentioned in Fallout 3 and its add-ons The Pitt, Broken Steel, and Point Lookout.



  1. Interview with Emil Pagliarulo at 1up

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