Vault dwellers (Fallout Shelter)

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For the legendary vault dwellers, see Fallout Shelter characters.
FalloutShelterAppleStoreLogoThe following is based on Fallout Shelter and some details might contradict canon.

Vault dwellers are the inhabitants of the player's Vault and as such are a very valuable resource. They are the ones who work for you, making the power, water and food that the vault requires to survive. They are also are sent out into the wasteland to explore for supplies. Ensuring their happiness and safety should be one of the overseer's primary concerns.

Vault dweller statisticsEdit

All dwellers have their own set of SPECIAL statistics, thus assisting in determining their ideal job posting. Each of these need to be considered to help achieve peak output in the production rooms. Example:If you post a person with a Perception of 1 in the Water treatment room instead of a person with a Perception of 6, production will be poor and minimal. Also, placing the right people in the right places helps fulfill objectives. You can always modify a vault dweller's SPECIAL stats by equipping an outfit that modifies SPECIAL to achieve the desired effect.

Acquiring and losing vault dwellersEdit

Players begin with 12 vault dwellers, all of which start at Level 1.


Players can acquire new vault dwellers by:

  • Mating an adult male and an adult female dweller in the living quarters, as detailed below. Related vault dwellers cannot mate (with the below exceptions).
    • The procedure that a couple will follow is: Meet, talk, dance, mate. If couples have been in the same room for a while (but talking or dancing with other people), they may miss a step.
    • Living Quarters follow the same space rules as other rooms - a single room can hold 2 adults, a double holds 4 and a triple holds 6. Placing more than one couple in a suitably sized room may result in mixing and matching of the couples as they decide which is their best mate.
    • The surname of the child is determined by their sex. If the child is a boy they take their mother's surname and if a girl then their father's surname. You can change the child's name as you can change anyone's name, by clicking on the name at the top of their Statistics, and editing it.
    • Dwellers sharing a parent cannot mate, nor can they mate their own parent or grandparent. You will see the "Hanging out with the family" message when they meet in the Living Quarters.
    • Uncles, cousins and nieces can mate, as can aunts and nephews.
    • A couple of max level (50) dwellers with max stats (10) can produce legendary children starting with 40 randomly assigned SPECIAL points.
  • Enticing a wanderer with the radio broadcasts from the radio studio.
  • Obtaining a Legendary dweller or rare vault dweller from a lunchbox or radio studio (small chance).
  • Dwellers exploring the Wasteland can discover locations. Sometimes when exploring this discovered location, dwellers will meet survivors. Your dweller will invite the survivor to your vault. This survivor will run to your vault door when you collect the dweller that found him/her. These survivors are rare dwellers and will have increased stats. They also may come with rare weapons and/or outfits.

If the player's Vault has no room for a new dweller (either because insufficient living quarters have been built, or the Vault has the maximum of 200 dwellers), pregnant women will not give birth and new arrivals will not enter the Vault.

Dwellers that have been sent out to explore the wasteland still count against the total capacity of the Vault.


Players can reduce the number of dwellers by death or expulsion. Death can happen inside the Vault (either by fire, attack by radroaches, raiders, mole rats, radscorpions, or deathclaws) or outside the Vault (by running out of stimpaks while exploring).

  • Dwellers who die inside the Vault may be resurrected (unless playing in Survival mode) or the bodies may be removed. Leaving a dead body inside the Vault lowers the happiness of any nearby (living) dwellers.
  • Dwellers who die whilst exploring may be resurrected (unless playing in Survival mode) or have their bodies removed. If you remove them, any resources they may have collected on their travels are lost.

Moving vault dwellersEdit

When a dweller is dragged into a room, they will commence whichever activity is appropriate for that room: for instance, a dweller dragged into a power plant will activate its power-producing abilities. A dweller dragged into a training room will begin training in that SPECIAL ability.

If a dweller is dragged into a room that is already full, they will take the place of the person there with the lowest (random if many) applicable SPECIAL statistic. For instance, if a dweller on coffee break is dragged into a 2-room power plant that already has 4 people in it, the dweller with the lowest Strength score (including outfit boost) will leave and will go on coffee break. If a dweller from diner is dragged into a 1-room power plant that already has 2 people in it, both with Strength=2 but one with Agility=1 and the other with Agility=2, one would think that the one better suited (the one with Agility=2) would take the place of diner, but in fact it is random.

A dweller dragged into a production room will gain levels as they produce the appropriate resource. The speed at which they gain this is determined by the size of the room, the number and level of other dwellers in with them, and how often the room is rushed successfully.

Improving vault dwellersEdit

Common dwellers who arrive at or are born into the Vault start at Level 1. Those who are born from parents with high S.P.E.C.I.A.L. statistics and level have a chance that their own statistics may be greater than 0.

  • Common vault dwellers start with 12-13 random SPECIAL points randomly distributed
  • Rare vault dwellers start with 28 SPECIAL points randomly distributed
  • Legendary vault dwellers start with 40 SPECIAL points[1] (max level/max SPECIAL parents can produce legendary children)

Dwellers in a training room will increase the appropriate SPECIAL statistic for that room. Example, a dweller in an armory will increase their Perception skill. When they have gained a point, they will show a small icon over their head, which must be cleared for the next set of training to begin. While they are training, they will show the time remaining until the next point gain under their feet. You must zoom in all the way in order to see time remaining under each training dweller.

Dwellers in training can only improve each SPECIAL statistic to 10. A dweller that has reached 10 in that specific statistic (e.g. a dweller in the armory who has reached a Perception score of 10) will then show "Max Level Reached" under their feet, instead of the time until the next upgrade.

If a dweller is dragged into a room while an incident is occurring, they will run back to their previous location or role once the incident is over. This can be useful for putting two of your heavily armed and armored vault dwellers in the vault entrance to meet raiders, knowing that they will return to their day jobs once the excitement is over. This important to remember though if moving people for other reasons during an incident. Separating a dancing couple during a fire to stop pregnancy occurring will be useless once the fire stops and they rush back into each others arms.


Main article: Happiness

Happiness is an important factor in keeping a vault functioning a peak efficiency. There are several ways of keeping vault dwellers happy:

  • Keep them healthy. A lack of food, water or power will bring down their mood.
  • Assign them to the correct job. Just like in real life, people hate doing jobs they just are not cut out for.
  • Give them some time with the opposite sex. It will lift their spirits and make them happy.
  • If they are sick, a little RadAway and/or stimpaks never hurt anyone.
  • Sometimes they just get bored. Assign them to the training rooms for some book worm or physical training.

Notable quotesEdit

  • "Cheese."
  • "Best. Job. EVER."
  • "What a great day!"
  • "I want to draw a picture later. Any requests?"
  • "With me working here, maximum efficiency is guaranteed!"
  • "You're like cholesterol, always messin' with my heart."
  • "I'm just so happy I could burst! But don't worry... I won't."
  • "Are we in a vertibird? 'Cause my heart's taking off."
  • "I've been thinking about making a cake for everyone. What flavor would be best?"

See alsoEdit



  1. Dwellers Fallout Shelter Wiki Guide - IGN

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