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The Vault - Fallout Wiki
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This is a lore summary, presenting intradiegetic or in-universe information about the subject. For game characteristics and similar data, consult the table on the right.
Game-specific articles
FalloutLaser rifle
Fallout 2Laser rifle
Laser rifle (ext. cap.)
Fallout 3Laser rifle
Wazer Wifle
Lightning gun Cut contentIcon cut.png
Laser rifle (demo) Cut contentIcon cut.png
Fallout 3: TPMetal Blaster
Fallout 3: BSTri-beam laser rifle
FO: New VegasLaser rifle
Recharger rifle
AER14 prototype
Tri-beam laser rifle
Van Graff laser rifle
The Disintegrator Cut contentIcon cut.png
Fallout 4Laser rifle
Good Intentions
Laser musket
Prototype PA77
Righteous Authority
Survivor's Special
Institute rifle
Virgil's Rifle
Wazer Wifle
FO TacticsLaser rifle
Fallout ShelterRusty laser rifle
Laser rifle
Tuned laser rifle
Focused laser rifle
Amplified laser rifle
Wazer Wifle
Laser musket
Fallout: BoSHome-made laser rifle
Van BurenLaser array gun
Mentioned-onlyAER12 laser rifle
Gametitle-FO1.pngGametitle-FO2.pngGametitle-FO3.pngGametitle-FO3 TP.pngGametitle-FO3 BS.pngGametitle-FNV.png
Gametitle-FO1.pngGametitle-FO2.pngGametitle-FO3.pngGametitle-FO3 TP.pngGametitle-FO3 BS.pngGametitle-FNV.pngGametitle-FO4.pngGametitle-FOT.pngGame tile Fallouit Shelter.pngGametitle-FOBOS.pngGametitle-VB.png

Laser rifles are high-tech weapons that emit a concentrated beam of coherent light, with sufficient wattage to do considerable damage. They can be powered by battery packs, fusion cells or cabled power systems, but most models use an internal capacitor, charged with microfusion cells.


Several different models exist, from low power homemade versions to extremely powerful military weapons. As with all energy weapons, laser rifles can suffer from poor performance if not properly maintained. For example, the AER9 crystal arrays and non-mechanical components are delicate and have to be cleaned and calibrated regularly, otherwise their deterioration can result in a loss of beam intensity, overheating, and energy regulation failure.[1]

Fortunately, maintenance is usually easy. Military-grade weapons can be easily opened to perform maintenance. Purified water and a clean cloth can be used to gently wash the mirrored and glass components, keeping them in shape. Even the impact of overheating can be limited by submerging the barrel of the weapon in water, cooling off the heat sinks located below the chassis.[2]

Given that laser weapons were still in their infancy as regular military weapons, parts can be hard to come by in the wasteland. However, their lack of moving parts (aside from the microfusion cell holding latch and trigger mechanism) means they are resilient against extended use.[3]

Apart from rifles, other laser weapons exist, like compact laser pistols and heavier Gatling lasers.


Wattz 2000 laser rifle

Fo1 laser rifle.png
Gameplay articles:

The Wattz 2000 laser rifle (also referred to as the Sunbeam laser rifle)[4] uses microfusion cells for more powerful lasers, and an extended barrel for additional range.[5][4] The Wattz 2000 was mass produced before the Great War, and was accurate enough to be used as a sniper rifle in the Sino-American War[6]

AER9 laser rifle


The primary energy service weapon of the United States military, the AER9 is a sturdy, reliable weapon focusing on ruggedness and usability over performance. The titanium cage housing the laser rifle mechanism is durable and retains focus of the internal arrays over extended periods of time, although the emphasis on reliability reduces firepower compared to state-of-the-art models like the AER12, with its gold alloy housing.[1] The principle of operation is simple, shared across all weapons of the AE platform: Power is drawn from microfusion cells and sent through a General Atomics International wave/particle diverter and on through precision-cut lenses of the crystal array to generate a focused laser beam. While the components are well protected (the diverter is shielded by a carbon fiber housing), they can be damaged. The aforementioned diverter is extremely difficult to repair and renders the weapon unusable if damaged. The lenses are also delicate when exposed, but can be replaced with cut clear glass, although a skillful hand is needed to duplicate the original cutting. However, beyond these components, the AER9 is a very forgiving weapon. The chassis can be opened in the field for servicing, while a damp cloth is enough to wash mirrored and glass components. Overheating is an issue, but simply submerging the weapon's barrel will help cool heat sinks down and prevent permanent damage. Most importantly, the absence of recoil allows even sub-par marksmen to use it effectively in the field.[2]

Despite its advantages, the AER9 did not manage to fully supersede conventional firearms in service. Limited production runs were manufactured and issued to select military units on all fronts of the Resource Wars (foreign or domestic), with many more undergoing further testing and development in facilities operated by the American military.[2] While full-scale adoption has not taken place, the military was already preparing for the full-scale deployment of the AER9 as standard weapon platform for the entire military. An extremely broad range of weapon modifications was developed for the rifle, allowing for the AER9 to be converted into almost any desired weapon type, depending on the situation. With the right barrel and muzzle, it could be an automatic assault weapon, a sniper rifle, or a close-quarters energy shotgun. Different options for optics and grips further refined the amount of options at the soldier's disposal. Combined with the commonality of ammunition type, the AER9 was set to revolutionize frontline combat.[7]

Tri-beam laser rifle

Tri-beam laser rifle.png
Gameplay articles:

The tri-beam laser rifle is essentially a "laser shotgun", which fires three laser beams with each discharge. Compared to the regular AER9, it's missing the tube on the bottom length of the barrel, is shorter in overall length and has a new emitter aperture and attached wires.

AER12 laser rifle

Gameplay article:
none (mentioned in Fallout 3)

The AER12 laser rifle was considered cutting-edge state-of-the-art technology before the Great War and was used only in a handful of specialty units. However, it is not as reliable as the older models like the AER9 or the Wattz 2000, as the focusing crystal array is housed in gold alloys, more vulnerable to years of exposure to environment.[1]

AER14 prototype laser rifle

AER14 prototype.png
Gameplay article:

The AER14 laser rifle was in development stages before the Great War, designed as an upgrade of the AER9 and AER12 models. Using the original AER9 chassis as basis, the weapon has modified optics and focusing crystals, resulting in a more focused and destructive laser beam. As a side effect, the frequency of the amplified light is shifted, resulting in a green, rather than red laser beam.

A single AER14 prototype is confirmed as existing by 2281. This development hardware platform was lost in Vault 22 and still retains its workshop markings and jury rigged circuit boards rigged to the stock. As the development cycle was not finished, the AER14 has power consumption issues, using up twice as much power per shot, and is more fragile compared to its predecessors.

Laser musket

Fo4 Laser Musket.png
Gameplay articles:

The laser musket combines high-tech energy damage with Revolutionary style. Each crank of its handle loads additional Fusion cell ammo, and the weapon can be cranked multiple times to increase the damage of a single shot.[8] It is the signature weapon of the Commonwealth Minutemen.

Recharger rifle

Gameplay article:

A specialized laser rifle designed to work with a microfusion breeder, the recharger rifle effectively has unlimited ammunition. The recharger rifle is also an incredibly sturdy weapon and requires less skill with energy weapons to use effectively. However, this particular rifle is much weaker and heavier than the more common AER9, and the user must time their shots to compensate for the weapon's need to charge up its shots.

Home-made laser rifle

FOBoSLogo.pngThe following is based on Fallout: Brotherhood of Steel and has not been confirmed by canon sources.

This is a poor excuse for an energy weapon. This garage-rate rifle has terrible accuracy and it doesn't even fire very fast. But any energy weapon is better than no energy weapon at all.

Lightning gun

Icon cut content.pngThe following is based on Fallout 3 cut content and has not been confirmed by canon sources.
Gameplay article:

The Lightning gun fires, essentially, a basic laser rifle's laser. At the point of impact it generates a natural gas cloud. After a moment, a second laser flies in (horizontally, from a seemingly arbitrary location) towards the gas cloud to ignite it.

Laser array gun

Gametitle-VB.pngThe following is based on Van Buren and has not been confirmed by canon sources.
Gameplay article:
Mbox stub.png
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  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Citadel terminals; Terminal, AER9 Laser Rifle: "Unlike many of the weapons in use today, the AER9 is actually not the top laser rifle that was in service at the time of the Great War. The model line went up to the state-of-the-art AER12, which saw service in a handful of specialty units. The reason that the AER9 is much more commonly found is that it was much sturdier and more reliable than the models that followed.
    The AER9 features a titanium housed crystal array which proved to withstand long years of exposure to the elements much better than the gold alloy housing of the later models. As a result, the crystal arrays stayed focused within operating parameters, rather than falling completely out of focus like the newer models.
    As with all energy weapons, the AER9 can suffer from poor performance if not properly maintained. The crystal arrays and non-mechanical components are delicate and if not properly serviced can lead to a loss of beam intensity, overheating, and energy regulation failure."
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Fort Independence terminals; Research Terminal (Laser Rifle/Pistol): "Subject -> Laser Rifle/Pistol
    Researcher -> J. T. Benning
    Analysis ->
    Further research regarding Laser Weaponry has not revealed much we didn't already know. Small production run of prototype weapons developed by US Military, most of these weapons were recovered from military armories where the weapons were being tested by live-fire groups of active duty personnel.
    Critical Components
    Critical Components ->
    Power drawn from Micro fusion Cell is processed through a Wave/Particle Diverter (manuf:Gen Atomics Intnl). Diverters are protected by carbon-fiber housing, preventing frequent malfunction, but when a diverter fails the weapon becomes unusable, and this part is extremely difficult to replace or repair.
    Precision-cut lenses focus optic energy. Lenses are prone to damage and can grossly affect precision of the firing weapon's firing mechanism. Lenses are easily replaced with any clear glass, but require a great deal of skill to fabricate.
    Field Operation
    Field Operation ->
    A fully charged cell will discharge 20 bolts from a pistol, and 12 shots from the rifle model. Recoil is negligible compared to ballistic weapons, so long range combat requires less marksmanship ability of the soldier.
    Maintenance ->
    The chassis are easily opened, allowing the weapon to be serviced in the field. Purified water and a clean cloth can be used to wash mirrored and glass components, slowing wear on the weapon. The weapon can also overheat after a period of intense use. This can be counteracted by submerging the barrel of the weapon in water, which helps cool heat sinks located beneath the chassis shell in that area."
  3. Historical context for the weapons.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Fallout Tactics: Brotherhood of Steel item description: "name_laserRifle = {Sunbeam Laser Rifle}"
    "desc_laserRifle = {A Wattz 2000 Laser Rifle. Uses micro fusion cells for more powerful lasers, and an extended barrel for additional range.}"
  5. Fallout and Fallout 2 item description: "{11800}{}{Laser Rifle}"
    "{11801}{}{A Wattz 2000 Laser Rifle. Uses micro fusion cells for more powerful lasers, and an extended barrel for additional range. Min ST: 6.}"
    (PRO ITEM.MSG (Fallout), PRO ITEM.MSG (Fallout 2))
  6. Cover of Future Weapons Today
  7. The array of weapon modifications available.
  8. Fallout 4 loading screen hints: "The Laser Musket combines high-tech energy damage with Revolutionary style. Each crank of its handle loads additional Fusion Cell ammo, and the weapon can be cranked multiple times to increase the damage of a single shot."