Sanctuary Hills (known simply as Sanctuary after the Great War) is a location in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, featured in Fallout 4. Here, the Sole Survivor and their family used to live in the House of Tomorrow before the Great War. After the war, it becomes one of the places the player character may choose to build a settlement in.
Built sometime in the 2070s, Sanctuary Hills was a friendly suburb of Concord, about a mile away. Located on a small island, and accessible only by a wooden bridge, it consists of 14 prefabricated homes. Here, the Sole Survivor lived with their spouse, child and Codsworth, their robot butler.
On Saturday October 23rd, 2077, many families were just beginning their weekend mornings when their radios and television sets began reporting nuclear detonations in New York and Pennsylvania at 9:42 am. At 9:47 am, Boston was hit by one atomic warhead, and Sanctuary Hills was hit by the atomic blast seconds later. Select citizens that had spaces reserved fled to Vault 111, just through the woods surrounding the community, to escape the atomic fire.
After the war, Sanctuary Hills was reduced to ruins, with its only residents being radroaches, bloatflies and Codsworth, as well as the Vault-Tec rep for a very short period of time. Fortunately, the town has some basis to become a good settlement, for very few critters pass by the area. There are occasional attacks from raiders, or super mutants and sometimes a Wasteland creature or some Gunners, who all have a chance to appear as the Sole Survivor further develops the area. However, they remain at a low level even as the player character levels up, which makes Sanctuary one of the easiest spots to defend.
Sanctuary Hills is accessible by a small footbridge from Vault 111 and a larger bridge which crosses the nearby river and leads, via road, to Concord. The village itself is built along a single road, which ends in a cul-de-sac, and is populated by several houses which, by 2287, are in various states of decay. To the west of Sanctuary Hills the Misty Lake is located and is the source to the two rivers surrounding the small island of Sanctuary Hills.
There are multiple safes and lootable items to be found in Sanctuary. Starting from the bridge leading out of the community, there is a floor safe (Advanced) hidden under a dresser in the blue house to the north of the road. In the yellow house at the curve of the street, there is a terminal (Novice) and a safe (Novice) with a makeshift bomb on top of it. In the blue house next to the yellow one is a Nuka-Cherry in the fridge, a first aid box in the bathroom, and a locked suitcase (Novice) in the bedroom. In the Sole Survivor's house, the player character can find an issue of Grognak the Barbarian on the kitchen table and the "You're SPECIAL!" book under the dresser in Shaun's room. There is a safe (Advanced) in the first house and a root cellar around the back of the second house down the street, which contains multiple items and a locked safe (Advanced). The house south of the roundabout has a floor safe hidden under the baby bed.
The root cellar is a shelter built under a neighboring property, two houses up from the House of Tomorrow in 2287. It appears that the owner was not able to reserve a space in a vault and so made his own shelter. The door can be found at the back of the house, just before the cul-de-sac in the northeast of Sanctuary Hills. It is next to a bush of wild mutfruit plants. There is a dufflebag containing leveled loot on the roof of the same house, accessible via the fallen tree at the back of the house.
- Grognak the Barbarian issue #3 – On the kitchen counter.
- You're SPECIAL! – In Shaun's bedroom, under the dresser. Grants +1 to the SPECIAL stat of your choice.
- Shaun's crib, a unique crib – In Shaun's bedroom. This is only useful in the crafting menu.
- Three gold bars can be found around and on the safe.
- Three Gwinnett stouts can be found in a crate on the floor.
- War Never Changes
- Out of Time
- The Molecular Level (optional; only if the Sole Survivor chose to ask for help from the Minutemen)
- When Freedom Calls
- Attempting to leave pre-War Sanctuary Hills via any method other than the path to Vault 111 will result in the bomb being dropped instantly, causing instant death.
- There is a military vehicle on a small island southwest of Sanctuary Hills amid strong rads, with a medic box inside, a military helmet next to the dead soldier, a box of ammo hidden between waste containers and some glowing fungus.
- There is a single raider with a small shelter to the north of the town, who usually has an attack dog. Some loot, and occasionally, the raider, respawn.
- Sanctuary Hills is a useful place for an early settlement as it contains a workbench, a weapons crafting station, an armor crafting station and a power armor station at the fast travel spawn point. The player character may also find a cooking station near the blue house marked 'Russell' on the mailbox, north of the bridge to the Red Rocket truck stop, and a chemistry station behind the yellow house marked 'Hawthorne' on the mailbox. It is a good idea to move the cooking and chemical stations to a more desirable location instead of scrapping them as the perk to create them cannot be learned before level 14. Two other mailboxes read 'Rosa' and 'Able.'
- One can find some fragmentation grenades in a green trash can on the left of the wooden bridge exiting Sanctuary Hills to the east. This is similar to Fallout 3 where, in Springvale close to the exit of Vault 101, one can find frag grenades in a blue mailbox.
- Sanctuary Hills is referred to as just "Sanctuary" on the official location marker in the game.
- There is a random encounter in which one can come across a bunch of feral ghouls with the names of some of the pre-War inhabitants of Sanctuary Hills, suggesting that they initially survived the war, but became feral ghouls.
- Upon returning and "discovering" Sanctuary Hills for the first time, an acoustic echo from It's All Over But the Crying plays and slowly fades out, reminiscing about the place it once was.
- The white picket fences found around the outside of the houses count towards the item limit. They can be scrapped if this becomes a problem.
- In the Defend Sanctuary Hills miscellaneous quest, one can expect assaults via the south bridge, via the path north to Vault 111 and from the east.
- After exploring the neighborhood with Codsworth, he tells the Sole Survivor the directions to Concord. In his directions, he mentions the footbridge to the south. This is slightly odd considering there were cars and even an APC that were in Sanctuary Hills, meaning the residents drove on a footbridge. However, as Preston Garvey states, the footbridge dates back to the American Revolutionary War. Meaning, it is technically still a footbridge, one that's over 600 years old.
- The Cherry Bomb found in the driveway immediately to the right of the path leading to Vault 111 can be found rotated 180 degrees after leaving the vault.
- The pre-War version of Sanctuary Hills is not truly changed by the nukes in the game files; instead, Sanctuary Hills (pre-War) is a separate location, and the player character is moved to the standard game map after the cryo freezing room scene, so one is not really missing out on seeing nuclear destruction. The original Sanctuary Hills may be accessed by using the console command coc PreWarSanctuaryExt01.
- fo4nw Sanctuary Hills can become a target for the Nuka-World raiders to take over.
- Interacting with Shaun's crib after leaving the vault will cause the Sole Survivor to say "Hang on Shaun I'm coming."
Sanctuary Hills appears only in Fallout 4.
Behind the scenesEdit
|The following is based on unverified behind the scenes information and has not been confirmed by canon sources.|
Sanctuary Hills appears to be set in the same location as the real-world Minute Man National Historical Park, as both are located northwest of Concord across what appears to be the Concord River, the bridge used to access Sanctuary in-game is nearly identical to the real-life Old North Bridge, and the location's map-marker bears a resemblance to the Minute Man statue adjacent to the bridge in real-life (Sanctuary also has a Minute Man statue, albeit adjacent to the wrong side of the bridge).
|End of information based on unverified behind the scenes information.|
- ps4 xboxone Upon fast travel to the settlement, the residents may appear on the roofs of some buildings — especially the one with the workshop — making dialogue difficult or even impossible. You can resolve this by either fast traveling again (sometimes 2 or 3 times to resolve), waiting for them to walk and fall off the roof, by building stairs up to the roof via the workshop and climbing up or, if you have already reached level 41, jetpack onto the roof with a modified power armor.[verified]
- ps4 Occasionally, upon fast traveling to Sanctuary Hills, a lone Vertibird will appear over the settlement hovering for a moment. It will then suddenly lose control and crash, inflicting damage to the Sole Survivor if they are too close to the area of impact.[verification overdue]
- Using the recruitment beacon at Sanctuary Hills may result in some bugged quests that will be impossible to complete from recruited settlers (unnamed settlers only, not from named settlers).[platforms tag needed][verification overdue]
- There have been cases in which, upon finishing any potential Minutemen quest at the end of which you are asked to report to Preston Garvey, you will find that all the settlers, including Preston Garvey and Mama Murphy, have returned to the Museum of Freedom without any option of returning them to Sanctuary. Any companions residing in Sanctuary do not appear to leave however. [platforms tag needed][verification overdue]
- When having trading stands, all the settlers may permanently stay near the stands without moving until the stands are destroyed. Fast traveling does not fix this bug.[platforms tag needed][verification overdue]
- pc ps4 xboxone Checking the settlement stats on the player's Pip-Boy for Sanctuary Hills may display erroneous stats, such as 0 defense, 0 beds and/or 0 water. This does not affect the settlement in any way, and the stats should reset to normal by fast traveling back to Sanctuary Hills, except for the happiness level which may drop (especially if the Sole Survivor is away for a long time without noticing the glitch on the Pip-boy). That stat will take some time to re-establish.[verified]
- ps4 There is an invisible maple tree for scrapping in the northern corner behind the yellow house that is next door north of the blue house with the cellar. It can't be seen normally, but in construction mode, the outline is highlighted in yellow.[verified]
- Sometimes upon fast traveling to Sanctuary Hills, your settlers may become hostile. Simply reloading a save seems to fix this.[platforms tag needed][verification overdue]
- xboxone Sometimes, during Minutemen quests given by Preston Garvey that are related to Sanctuary Hills, you will be unable to find the settler that you are supposed to talk with to start the quest. This results in the quest failing after a few in-game days.[verification overdue]
- pc The buildable area of Sanctuary Hills extends way beyond the green border in the northeast part of town, extending towards the east.[verification overdue]
- ps4 If Nuka-World is installed, fast traveling or coming within the buildable area of the Sanctuary will crash the game.[verification overdue]