Unfortunately, we were crowded and life was very bad. There was a schism, and many people left, taking with them the best equipment. Still, some of us tried to stay in the Vault. But then we were attacked. I was hurt, and I ended up here. Now I try to help people..."
Like many of the vaults, it was part of Vault-Tec's grand social experiment. It was to stay closed for fifty years, was overcrowded, and contained occupants of extremely diverse ideologies and cultures. The situation caused by the experiment led to a great schism, during which four groups ultimately left the vault to brave the wastes during the spring of 2141. Three of these groups became roving gangs of raiders: the Jackals, the Vipers, and the Khans in the winter of the same year. The fourth group settled down a few miles west of the vault and founded the village of Shady Sands in the spring of 2142.
While the three gangs harassed the village and each other over the years, Vault 15 itself gradually fell into disrepair. By the time the Vault Dweller came across it in his search for a replacement water chip for Vault 13, it was already ransacked and had also undergone complete power failure, several cave-ins, water damage, and other catastrophes. The intervening years has not done anything to improve the vault, but they have brought new occupants. Some of the leftovers from a nearby raider band, the Khans, have moved into the nearby empty caves where the vault once stood. A small settlement of squatters has made its home at the entrance to Vault 15. The squatters forge a precarious existence there by the sufferance of the gang.
Shortly after, the squatters allowed a man named Darion and his men move into the vault itself on the condition that they repair the vault's systems in order to help provide the squatters with food, water, and other amenities. At first, this setup was advantageous enough that the squatters rejected all efforts by the NCR to annex them or even gain simple access to the vault.
Then, the Chosen One came along. President Tandi hired the Chosen One to infiltrate Vault 15 - or at least get the squatters to allow NCR access - to retrieve computer parts and other equipment vital to the NCR's continued expansion. While accomplishing this quest, he discovered the truth behind Darion's operation; he and his men were actually a band of raiders calling themselves the New Khans, using the vault as a base of operations towards Darion's goal of revenge against Tandi and everything the Vault Dweller stood for. Also, the food and water that he had been providing the squatters with didn't come from the vault's systems after all, but the spoils from raids the New Khans had been running along the wastes between NCR and Vault City.
After Darion was killed by the descendant of the man he had sworn vengeance against nearly eighty years earlier, that very same man brokered a deal with the squatters, who accepted the NCR's assistance. With the support the Chosen One secured from the New California Republic, the Vault 15 squatters soon became self-sufficient and productive members of society. The Chosen One's help with Vault 15 launched the New California Republic's push to civilize its neighbors. Though there were many more obstacles to overcome, the NCR now had a foothold into the northern wastes.
A small building sitting in the middle of an empty space. This entrance is usually guarded by a radscorpion if you have a low luck.
The squat (Fallout 2)
A grouping of tents, small buildings and some trees up against the side of a cliff. There are squatters wandering the area.
This area has the same layout as Vault 13's entrance. At the end of this area you will need a rope to go further down into the vault.