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Entrance to Underworld inside the Museum of History
Underworld was founded circa 2230 out of the necessity for ghouls to live their lives. Between the super mutants in the D.C. Ruins, other mutated creatures and bigoted humans, life out in the wastes was not particularly pleasant for ghouls, but as long as they stay in the Museum of History away from other settlements, the ghouls may live as people, not monsters. Still, they do send patrols out into the D.C. neighborhoods to scavenge what is not already in the museum.
It exists as a small city, complete with a bar, inn, clinic, clothing store, and even a self-proclaimed "hair stylist." Doctor Barrows is the mayor of Underworld. Because of the small nature of the town, his civic duties take a backseat. Most humans are tolerated, as long as they do not cause trouble for residents. Naturally, the Brotherhood of Steel are not welcome because of their hostility towards ghouls and tendency to shoot at them on sight. The super mutants on the Mall ignore the ghouls for the most part, but raiders and slavers occasionally come into the city, although they're swiftly chased off by Charon and Cerberus. The residents can often be found spending what little caps they have at Carol's Place or the Ninth Circle.
The museum was featuring an exhibit on the concepts of Hell and the afterlife during the time before the Great War, as most of the remaining exhibits (including the name of that section of the Museum as well) are all themed as such.
Outside of the Museum of American History, the player will be greeted by a ghoul named Willow, a self-proclaimed 'envoy to the wastes'. A Brotherhood of Steel outpost is located nearby, and several super mutants are present across the road.
Underworld is located inside Museum of American History. Griffon will set up his Aqua Cura scam outside if Take it Back! has been completed, but only with the Broken Steel add-on. The Lone Wanderer can reach the town by going through the double doors under the giant skull.
When you first enter, you'll be standing in front of the main hallway. Underworld Outfitters, a store run by Tulip, is in a room on the left side of the hallway, while Winthrop's office is opposite and a little farther from the entrance. The doors in the back lead to The Chop Shop, where Doctor Barrows works.
Heading up either set of stairs will take you to the overlook. The Ninth Circle is a bar run by a shady ghoul named Ahzrukhal and is on the left side from the main entrance. Carol's Place, where you can rent a room or grab a bite to eat, is located on the right from the main entrance. In the large room at the end of the overlook, Moira Brown will be selling miscellaneous items and asking you to continue with research for her survival guide (if you destroyed Megaton). Snowflake, the resident barber, will hound you for a haircut.
- ¹ Unconscious as long as the Reilly's Rangers quest isn't completed.
- ² If she survives Stealing Independence and is spoken to after completion.
- ³ If you destroy Megaton without killing her.
- ⁴ Can be found wandering around in front of the entrance to the Underworld in the room with the woolly mammoth. He must be freed from his prison cell during the Finding the Garden of Eden quest.
- Right before entering the doors to the Underworld Concourse, you're facing north. However, once you're actually inside, you're facing south.
- If you decide to blow up Megaton, then Moira Brown will survive and come to live in Underworld, unless the Lone Wanderer has completed the Wasteland Survival Guide quest, in which case she will remain at Megaton Ruins.
- If she dies on her way to Underworld, her locker (labeled Craterside Supplies) might become glitched into the wall outside the doors of the Ninth Circle. The Lone Wanderer will still need her key to open it.
- If Lone Wanderer doesn't recruit Fawkes as a companion, he will appear here after the Lone Wanderer speaks to him outside Raven Rock.
Underworld appears only in Fallout 3.
Behind the scenes
- The large ruined painting on the second floor of the Concourse is "Dante and Virgil in Hell" by William-Adolphe Bouguereau.
- Also relating to Dante and Virgil, the bar "Ninth Circle" is phrased after the travels of Dante and Virgil through the nine circles of hell.
Concept art by Adam Adamowicz
- Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition p.69: "Doctor Barrows
Doctor Barrows runs Underworld's Chop Shop and has a pretty sick sense of humor. He hangs around the Chop Shop most of the time, often looking in on Reilly, the human female he's treating. At night, he leaves to eat dinner at Carol's Place for a few hours, and then returns to the clinic. He sleeps for a couple of hours on site. Doctor Barrows is also mayor of Underworld, although, because of the small nature of the town, his civic duties take a back seat."
(Fallout 3 Official Game Guide Game of the Year Edition Wasteland Census)
- The Lone Wanderer: "What can you tell me about Underworld?"
Winthrop: "We were driven underground... hrm... almost fifty years ago now. Between the Super Mutants, the beasts, and you crazy humans, it's not safe up there. So we stay down here, out of sight and out of trouble. We get a few smoothskins every so often, but most of us don't trust 'em. You're not gonna give us more reasons not to be trusting, are you?"
- The Lone Wanderer: "What can you tell me about Underworld?"
Carol: "I've been here since we founded the town. Before that, well, life out in the Wastes wasn't very pleasant for us. But, so long as we stay down here, we can live our lives as people -- not monsters. I think things are better this way for everyone."
- The Lone Wanderer: "Where am I?"
Winthrop: "You're in Underworld, smoothskin. It's the only safe place for we Ghouls in D.C. We're here, out of sight and out of mind. The mutants leave us alone and the Slavers usually don't come this far into the city, so it's not bad. Really, the Brotherhood of Steel is the only thing we have to worry about... so long as we don't leave Underworld, that is."
- The Lone Wanderer: "What can you tell me about Vernon Square?"
Barrows: "Oh my, that's a dangerous part of the D.C. Ruins. Every patrol Underworld has sent even near that zone has come back in bad shape, or hasn't returned at all."
- The Lone Wanderer: "A city full of Ghouls, huh?"
Winthrop: "That's right. And so long as you don't bother us, we won't bother you. Feel free to come and go, trade, sleep, whatever. Just make sure that you leave whatever trouble is following you at the door, because we don't want it. So, enjoy your stay, smoothskin."
- The Lone Wanderer: "The Brotherhood of Steel? What's your beef with them?"
Winthrop: "Bastards. They don't seem to be able to tell us apart from the Super Mutants. Or, maybe they just don't care. They see us and shoot on sight. And least they have the common courtesy to miss most of the time. Still... bigots."
- The Lone Wanderer: "Isn't it dangerous being this deep into the city?"
Tulip: "Not really. The Super Mutants leave us alone. I guess whatever they do that turns people like them doesn't work on us. The Brotherhood of Steel will fire on us if we're out in the open, but they don't bother us down here. We've had some Raiders and Slavers poke their heads in, but we've got Charon and Cerberus and everyone else to take care of them. I guess when it comes down to it, being this far out of everyone's way is a good deal for us."
- The Lone Wanderer: "What do you do with the money you make down here?"
Tulip: "Well... we spend it at Carol's. Or the Ninth Circle, but I don't like it there. The rest we give to Quinn to trade for stuff we need whenever he goes out."
- Tenpenny Tower terminals; Exploration Database, Underworld