The Vault - Fallout Wiki

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The Vault - Fallout Wiki
The Vault - Fallout Wiki

Androids, also called synthetic humanoids or synths, are synthetic organisms designed to look and behave like humans. They are equipped with strong AI to make the act all the more convincing; however, this usually leads to androids becoming self-aware and realizing consciousness. Androids are solely a post-war invention, with the Institute in the Commonwealth being the only known producer of androids.


Androids created by the Institute have no rights, are viewed as nothing more than machines and are often simply used as slaves.[1] Any android that attempts to escape is hunted down by the Synth Retention Bureau, a special branch of the Commonwealth Police, to be decommissioned or captured if possible.[2][3] The Railroad is a special network that works counter to the Synth Retention Bureau, arranging for escaped androids to receive plastic surgery and new memories.[4] Around 2277, a number of holotapes containing rumors of an escaped android circulated around technological, medical, slaver and sympathizer rings in the Capital Wasteland and caused quite a stir.[5][6][7] However, after the rumors had yet to reveal anything legitimate that could verify their authenticity, the once-curious wasteland denizens were quick to consider the whole thing a hoax.[8][9] Still, those from the Commonwealth know better.


According to Dr. Zimmer, androids produced by the Institute have synthetic skin and blood, and are programmed to simulate human behaviors, such as speaking and breathing and can even eat and digest food realistically.[10] However, these characteristics can be altered with the right know-how: the fake skin is so similar to human flesh that it can be altered by a skilled surgeon with a lipoplasticator; in addition, a seasoned computer scientist can actually delete the android previous memories using a circuit neuralizer and fabricate entirely new ones.[11][12]

Known androids

Related quests


Androids appear in Fallout 3 and Fallout 4.

Behind the scenes

  • The concept of escaped androids that are hunted down by specially trained trackers appears to be an homage to the sci-fi classic Blade Runner. Author Philip K. Dick explored ideas of different types of conscious beings as equal with humanity, and the human reaction to these rival sentient beings.
  • The terms "synthetic humanoid" and "synth" are very similar to the androids of the "Alien" films and comics.


  1. The Lone Wanderer: "Sounds like slavery to me. You sure they don't "wander off" on purpose?"
    Zimmer: "Nonsense! This is a machine we're talking about. Can you enslave a generator, or a water purifier? Of course not. The same principle applies. But let's get back to your mission. You are to find this missing android. I've tracked him to somewhere here in the Capital Wasteland. He must have done something drastic, like facial surgery and a mind wipe, or else I would have found him by now. It will be no easy task. He may not even realize he's an android. Don't upset him by talking with him. Just come get me immediately. I'll handle it."
    (Zimmer's dialogue)
  2. Self determination is not a malfunction
  3. The Lone Wanderer: "Are you part of the Railroad? What do you know about this android?"
    Herbert Dashwood: "I heard they found him a place to hide. It's not easy. The Commonwealth always sends someone looking. Someone ruthless and determined. They were looking for a surgeon and a computer wiz. But that's old news. Lay low for a while. We've had to temporarily shut down the railroad."
    (Herbert Dashwood's dialogue)
  4. Victoria Watts: "You've been rather busy lately. Asking questions. "Investigating." So, is that it? You're some kind of investigator? A detective for hire?"
    The Lone Wanderer: "Who the hell are you?"
    Victoria Watts: "Fine, let's cut to the chase. My name is Victoria Watts. I work for a movement whose goals are directly opposed to your own, apparently. It seems you're trying very hard to locate an android my associates and I have tried very hard to hide. You can see how that puts us at odds."
    (Victoria Watts' dialogue)
  5. Replicated Man holotapes
  6. The Lone Wanderer: "Tell me more about this holotape about the android."
    Church: "You got wax in your ears? I said it was a hoax. Practically every doctor in the Capital Wasteland got a holotape like that. Go bother someone else."
    (Church's dialogue (Fallout 3))
  7. The Lone Wanderer: "Tell me more about this holotape about the android."
    Moira Brown: "I guess they sent those tapes to lots of people. Especially people like me who are interested in technology. Boy, I wish androids were real, though!"
    (Moira Brown's dialogue)
  8. The Lone Wanderer: "Do you know anything about some android who needed a surgeon?"
    Church: "Some VIP from up north looking for surgery and computer expertise. I don't pay attention to that crap, and neither should you. Thought that hoax was long in the grave. Here take this holotape and hear it for yourself. That was just some bored prankster. Forget about it."
    (Church's dialogue (Fallout 3))
  9. The Lone Wanderer: "Do you know anything about an android from the Commonwealth?"
    Moira Brown: "Something about facial surgery and reprogramming its memory. But that seems to have been a hoax. Haven't heard anything about it in a long time. Have you heard the so called "android recording?" It sounds like an ordinary man! Here's a spare copy of that old holotape. It's a hoax for sure."
    (Moira Brown's dialogue)
  10. The Lone Wanderer: "I need to know more about what I'm dealing with. What is an android exactly?"
    Zimmer: "Forget everything you know about robots. Those buckets are mere children's toys compared to the real thing. Androids have fake skin, and blood, and are programmed to simulate human behavior, like breathing. They can even eat and digest food realistically."
    (Zimmer's dialogue)
  11. The Lone Wanderer: "Let's just say it's in your best interest to tell me what I want to know."
    Horace Pinkerton: "Fine, whatever. This android, calls himself Harkness now, comes in and wants a memory job. I took new memories, and replaced his old ones. Don't believe anyone's done that before. Certainly not down here. That Commonwealth tech isn't all that fancy when it comes down to it. I'm also the only one in the wasteland with the skill and the nerve to perform facial surgery. That android flesh aint so different than ours. You want proof? I documented the whole thing. So I could rub it in the face of Dr. Li when I need to rankle her feathers. I hate that snooty bitch."
    (Horace Pinkerton's dialogue)
  12. Pre-Harkness Audio Recording