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Oh my God... you actually opened it!

Amata upon seeing the vault door being opened.

Escape! is a main quest in Fallout 3. It is also an achievement on the Xbox 360 and PC; and a bronze trophy on the PlayStation 3.


Pack your Bags

  • Make your way to the Atrium

The quest begins with Amata frantically trying to wake you up. She informs you that your father has left Vault 101 and Jonas is dead. Every member of the vault security team has been ordered to attack you because the Overseer thinks that you are responsible for James's departure, and along with that, radroaches have also infested the vault. Amata offers a 10mm pistol in perfect condition to the player; it can either be accepted or refused. If you refuse, Amata will keep the gun and use it to help you fight Vault 101 security later. The player may also tell off Amata, resulting in her simply remaining in the room. The player may still leave, however.


Butch and the radroaches

Head left. Butch DeLoria should come running down the hallway begging you for help. His mom is being attacked by radroaches, and he's afraid of them. You can help him either by talking him into killing the radroaches himself (either through a speech check, or by lending him your BB gun or baseball bat if you have either of the weapons on you) or by killing them for him. You may also choose to simply walk away, convince him his mother is doomed and he should save himself through a speech check, or even kill him yourself. You can still save his mother if you do the latter. No matter which solution you choose, you almost always get his Tunnel Snake outfit which gives you +5 to Melee Weapons, either because he gives it to you out of gratitude or because he dies and you can loot it off his corpse.

In the nearby diner is the body of Grandma Taylor. It appears that the radroaches killed her, but the player will later learn she died of a heart attack.

Officer Gomez will run into you and tell you to leave the Vault, allowing you to go free. You have a few options here involving the officer, two of which involve blaming him for Jonas' death. Andy can be found torching radroaches in this corridor. Stanley is hiding in your Dad's office behind a Very Easy lock, but you can either pick it, or wait until Andy kills the radroaches, at which point he'll come out on his own. The Bobblehead - Medicine is on the desk in the office if you didn't pick it up when you were going to take your G.O.A.T. three years ago. There is only one other opportunity during the latter part of the game to retrieve this bobblehead.

Atrium atrocities


When you enter the Atrium, you will see two of your fellow vault dwellers contemplating escape, referencing your father in the process. Tom Holden will rashly run into the guarded corridor, shouting his name and asking to be let through. Mary Holden will comment on his rashness, before running to her death after his at the hands of security. However, if the guards are engaged before they rush in, they will instead flee. Saving them in this fashion has no effects later in the game. The door at the end of the corridor leads to the Vault entrance, but is well beyond your current Lockpick skill (very hard).

The route you will need to follow is through the security door just to the right of the entrance corridor. It has been jammed open with a locker. Proceed up the stairs, noting that you will encounter 2 radroaches upon it, and 3-5 radroaches in the connecting corridor. Now you are on the upper level of the Atrium, the facing doorway will be open, the two doors on the wall to your left are inaccessible. As you head to the only open door, you will pass a windowed room with Allen Mack and Gloria Mack inside. Allen will begin shouting at you, blaming you and your father for the predicament that they are in. Security Chief Hannon is usually found wandering around here as well and will attack you.

There will be a dead maintenance worker, Floyd Lewis, by a toolbox. Continuing through the only door beside the one you entered through, follow the corridor.

Good/Bad Friend

Interrogation of Amata

Amata's interrogation

When you turn the corner, you'll hear Amata and her father, the Overseer, talking. The conversation is, in fact, an interrogation about your whereabouts. If you let Amata keep the 10mm pistol, she will free herself by shooting Mack. If you enter the room, Amata will flee and Mack will attempt to kill you.

The Overseer can be spoken to in this room. Asking him for the Overseer's office key and terminal password will result in his refusal. If he is threatened for the keys, he will attack, but if Amata is threatened, he will give in (and also stop shouting for the guards). You can also choose to say you'll escape without them. The keys may also be pickpocketed from him, or found in lockers near the door and computer. A key can be found in a dresser in the Overseers room, where Amata is found after she shoots Mack. The Overseer can also be killed, resulting in Amata becoming upset and Allen Mack (Officer Mack's father) becoming the new Overseer by the time of Trouble on the Homefront.

If the player gives him his/her weapons and ammunition, the Overseer will turn hostile and attempt to attack, regardless of whether or not the player had any at the time (e.g. they left them in a desk).

If the Overseer is not hostile and further dialogue is attempted after the conversation, he will simply say he has "nothing else to say to you".

The player can also choose to simply ignore the confrontation and sneak on by.

If you attack Officer Mack and kill him, Amata will run to her room and thank you for saving her.

Pop the Cork


Amata and the opening

  • Change any of your character's attributes

The next room has Jonas' corpse. Search his corpse to find a Note from Dad.

Amata will be waiting in the connecting room if she was rescued. If the gun was not accepted at the beginning of the quest, she will present it to the player when spoken to.

If the player does not pick up a key to the office, the red door to the Overseer's office will have to be picked. The lockers in here have the Overseer's terminal password. If not picked up, the terminal will have to be hacked.

Once logged onto the computer, you can select the "Open Overseer's Tunnel" option to proceed through the secret passage, or read through several files that will help immerse you in the Fallout world. A door is at the end of the tunnel: once through, you'll find yourself in a small room with a switch on the wall. Once activated, it will reveal a larger room. There's another switch here that will open the vault door. Once opened, Amata will come down, regardless of whether or not you saved her, and say her goodbyes, be they good or bad.

Shortly after this, another door will open and more security officers will enter. Any ones that did not die earlier will also show up. Your final objective is to run through the exit and reach the final door between you and the Capital Wasteland.

When the door is examined, the game will offer you one last chance to change your character's name, race, initial S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stats, tagged skills, gender, and initial appearance. Note that the character's hairstyle may be changed later through various non-player characters, and his/her appearance may be changed through Horace Pinkerton.

Exiting the Vault nets you 200 XP for completing the quest, enough for the first level-up. Regardless of how much XP you gain during this quest, you will not level up until this point. For the people who play on Very Hard, it is not uncommon to have leveled up an additional time considering the first few levels don't require much XP.

Quest stages

5 Talk to Amata about her plan to escape the Vault.
10 Enter the Overseer's office.
40 Use the Overseer's computer to access the secret tunnel.
50 Enter the reactor control room.
60 Turn the power back on.
70 Open the Vault door.
80Quest finishedIcon checkEscape the Vault.


  • If the Overseer is killed by a radroach, Amata will still accuse you of killing him.
  • Butch is considered an ally, and will be an active combatant if you talk him into saving his mom.
  • If the BB gun is given to Butch to save his mother, he will return it in 100% condition.
  • Before exiting the Vault through the wooden door and the end of the tunnel, run back to the now inaccessible great Vault door. If Amata was saved from her father, and the pursuing guards were not killed, they may be heard beating up Amata, and Amata saying "Stop it!" or "Get away from me!"
  • Near Grandma Taylor's body is a rare Toaster that is a pre-War model.
  • Everyone except Amata, Andy, and Stanley may be killed during this mission.
  • You can pickpocket Stanley for a Vault 101 Utility Key. However, it cannot be used during this mission, as almost all closed doors are marked as "INACCESSABLE".
  • The framed Revelation 21:6 quote hanging on the wall behind the player's father's desk covers a hidden safe. It has an average lock, requiring Lockpick 50 to open it. There is no way to open this lock at the beginning of the game without using the console; the maximum Lockpick skill the player may have at this point is 47, if they have 10 Perception, 9 or 10 Luck, tag Lockpick during Future Imperfect, and wear the Vault 101 Utility Suit. If the player gains enough EXP to level up during the quest, the game will not grant the level until after the quest (even if no enemies are nearby). Only returning during the optional Trouble on the Homefront quest will allow the player to retrieve it.
  • If guards are attacking the player as he/she leaves the Vault's Entrance hatch, they will back away. They may sometimes say dialogue such as, "I'm not crazy enough to go out there! I don't care what the Overseer says!".
  • The 10mm pistol Amata gives will be at 100% condition.
  • Rather amusingly, if the Overseer chased you to the door he will wait with the other guards saying "I'm not going out there no matter what the Overseer says."
  • In Vault 101 if you attack Amata enough to become hostile but not kill her she will chase you nearly out of the vault.
  • If you render Amata unconscious and drag her body out of Vault 101, the vault door will still close, but Amata will walk to the door and disappear after a few seconds.
  • This is the third out of four chances to get the Bobblehead - Medicine.

Transition quotes

  • "Anything's possible, even an A from Mr. Brotch! Hahahaha!"- James
  • "Your daddy the doc is not here to save you now, is he? So what are you going to do now?"- Butch
  • "Now stop talking to me and get back to work. Selfish and insubordinate, just like your father!"- The Overseer
  • "Listen, you need to know these things. I'm not going to be around to hold your hand forever, you know.- James


  • pcIcon pc ps3Icon ps3 Attempting to interfere in the event with Tom and Mary can cause several strange effects. (See discussion page)
  • pcIcon pc If The Overseer becomes hostile but is not killed before reaching the Vault door, Amata will still speak as if he were killed by the player.

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