The Jackals are no more than a handful of scarred and tattooed reprobates, scraping out a living by preying on anything weaker than them.”— Fallout: New Vegas Official Game Guide
The Jackals are a band of raider-tribals with a profoundly savage and cannibalistic nature. They originated from Vault 15 with two other raider groups (Khans and Vipers). They are mentioned in Fallout but finally only appeared in-game in Fallout: New Vegas in 2281.
The Jackals are a typical group of raiders but more savage and with a cannibalistic nature. They file their teeth to sharp points and generally wear their hair long. They became savage and cannibalistic after a winter storm trapped them, forcing them to eat each other for survival. Some even resort to feigning death or running away from fights, only to return later and claim the corpses from each side. Generally they despise all mutants, and refuse to eat them because of an apparent bad taste.
Nothing concerns them but survival. They typically use ambushes and group tactics to overpower their victims. They are considered cowards though, and will not attack unless they know they can win. Otherwise they will band together in their hideaways and fight over spoils. Normally small family groups, they sometimes join forces against bigger targets. They will even bring women and children along to further augment their advantage in size. They generally use unarmed and melee weapons, but occasionally use firearms.
During the spring of 2141, four groups left Vault 15 to brave the Wasteland. In the winter of the same year, three of these groups became roving gangs of raiders: the Jackals, the Vipers, and the Khans. The Jackals founder and first leader is unknown. After their creation, they began to raid Shady Sands and fought extensively against the Vipers and the Khans, until they were defeated by the Khans and fled east of California sometime before 2161. Though they were once very feared, along with the Vipers they were almost all destroyed by the NCR and the remaining Jackals were again pushed further east, towards the Mojave Wasteland.
The relative lawlessness of the Mojave in 2281 appealed as a perfect roaming grounds for them. Jackal gang members are commonly found along the highway south of Primm and west of Nipton, at the Nipton Road Pit Stop. Their local center of operations is a Nevada Highway Patrol station, although they can also be found in small camps elsewhere in the Mojave. Each small family groups consists of about three normal members and a leader, with the leader usually wearing metal armor. They often hide behind billboards and other obstructions, ambushing any passing travelers they see, occasionally planting mines on the roads to strengthen the ambush.
They finally appear as enemies in Fallout: New Vegas, albeit splintered and weak. They were also to appear in Van Buren, the canceled Fallout 3 project by Black Isle Studios, as well as in Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel 2.