A view from above of the desert in Fallout: New California.
Image via Radian-Helix Media

Fallout Fan Games, Ranked

Ranking all the Fallout fan games you should play (an one you should avoid).

The original Fallout was released in 1997. Since then, the series received four mainline single-player sequels, a multiplayer-focused main title (Fallout 76), and a couple of non-canon spinoffs. That averages to one mainline title every 5.4 years. This leaves longtime fans looking outside the official games for their new adventure in the wastelands. For those players, we’ve ranked our favorites among all Fallout fan games.

Recommended Videos

Ranking All the Fallout Fan Games, Best to Worse

Fallout: Nevada

A screenshot from the intro movie of Fallout Nevada, Fallout 2 mod.
Screenshot via Nevada Band

Fallout: Nevada (and its English translation) is an impressive fan game based on the Fallout 2 engine. Even though it’s based on the second entry in the series, Nevada is actually a prequel to the original game. This mod will be especially interesting to Fallout 2 fans, as the game tells the story of how Vault 8 became Vault City. This is a pivotal period for the series, as Vault 8 is one of the few Fallout vaults to work as intended, culminating in the creation of a new civilization.

On top of its interesting setting, Fallout: Nevada boosts quite a few improvements on the other classic entries. It has a fully-fledged crafting system, a lot more side quests than the original Fallout, and a much better balance overall.

Fallout 1.5: Resurrection

The protagonists talks with a caravan of merchants in Fallout 1.5, mod of Fallout 2.
Image via Resurrection Team

Fallout 1.5: Resurrection is a fan game masquerading as an expansive Fallout 2 mod. The game takes place between the two original titles, hence the name Fallout 1.5. Not that it actually matters, since Resurrection takes place far away from the original games’ locations.

Fallout 1.5: Resurrection is a much more faithful interpretation of the original Fallout than most games in the series, fan-made or not. Gone is the self-referential irony of Fallout 2 and the following titles. In its place is a story fit for a wilder post-apocalypse. One where settlements are scarce, friends are rare, and every resource is worth fighting for.

Fallout: New California

The protagonist interacts with a giant machine in Fallout: New California, mod of Fallout: New Vegas
Image via Radian-Helix Media

Fallout: New California isn’t the best fan game out there, but it’s full of potential and interesting ideas. However, potential and ideas are something you look for in a prototype, not necessarily in a complete product. The only reason New California makes the cut for third place is because the remaining two mods have been disqualified.

That said, if you’re in dire need of a 3D Fallout fill and the new Fallout 4 quests are not enough, this is for you. Fallout: New California offers about 10 hours for a non-completionist playthrough and map over half the size of New Vegas. It’s also one of the few total conversions in this list to be compatible with other mods.

Fallout: Sonora

A table with a radio, an empty bottle of Nuka Cola, and a bag of chips.
Screenshot via Nevada Band

Some might argue that Fallout: Sonora shouldn’t be this low down, considering how much of an achievement it is. After all, this 2D Fallout fan game rivals the complexity of a New Vegas total conversion mod. But Fallout: Sonora has a problem that makes it really hard to engage with in earnest. This is a Russian project, and the only English version currently available is machine-translated.

You will spend dozens of hours talking to other characters in Fallout: Sonora. Being able to understand the game is better than nothing, but it’s hard to really enjoy the game this way. As someone who attempted to play so many machine-translated visual novels, I suggest you wait for a better translation.

A Word on The Frontier

A vertibird flies towards a building in the distance.
Image via Macintroll

The Frontier is one of the biggest mods ever made for Fallout: New Vegas. It’s also the biggest Fallout fan game to this day. It’s a wildly ambitious fan creation which, like most of its kind, bit on more than it could chew. But the reason it’s at the bottom of this list, separated from the rest, is that I could never recommend you give it a shot.

That said, you should probably know what you’re in for and decide for yourself. For starters, this mod is extremely, visibly fixated with sex and eroticism. The constant presence of those themes is a bit distracting, but this shouldn’t be treated as an inherent problem as long as the developers approach the topic with caution. As you might have guessed, this didn’t happen.

The same goes for the topics of sexual violence and coerced sex work, which the mod only ever uses as the punchline to a joke that never lands. It soon becomes clear that if The Frontier has no interest in treating these elements with any amount of respect, it should probably avoid them entirely.

Fallout Fan Games – The Bottom Line

Needless to say, there are lots of mods for Fallout: New Vegas that don’t try to engage with sensitive topics they are deeply unequipped for just to appear more edgy. There are also a lot of fan games in the series that don’t plagiarize entire scenes from other games, as The Frontier does repeatedly. I suggest you play those other, better fan games instead of The Frontier.

That concludes our recommendation of Fallout fan games to check out and/or avoid at all costs. If you’re looking for new, exciting stories but don’t want to start a whole new game, check out our Fallout 4 mods list. You’ll find plenty more in our Fallout content hub.


GameSkinny is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more
related content
Read Article Senua’s Saga: Hellblade 2 Continues a Unique Exploration of Mental Illness
A close-up of Senua from Senua's Sage: Hellblade 2
Read Article Fallout Theory Explains How Stimpaks Work
Three stimpaks on a table in Fallout.
Read Article Honkai: Star Rail Needs to Slow Powercreep — or Turn It up to 11
Acheron after a massive attack in Honkai: Star Rail
Read Article Fallout 4 Theory Claims the Mannequins Are Evil
Smiling mannequin in Fallout 4
Read Article Assassin’s Creed Shadows Easter Egg Teases Iconic Weapon Return
Yasuke and Naoe from Assassin's Creed Shadows
Related Content
Read Article Senua’s Saga: Hellblade 2 Continues a Unique Exploration of Mental Illness
A close-up of Senua from Senua's Sage: Hellblade 2
Read Article Fallout Theory Explains How Stimpaks Work
Three stimpaks on a table in Fallout.
Read Article Honkai: Star Rail Needs to Slow Powercreep — or Turn It up to 11
Acheron after a massive attack in Honkai: Star Rail
Read Article Fallout 4 Theory Claims the Mannequins Are Evil
Smiling mannequin in Fallout 4
Read Article Assassin’s Creed Shadows Easter Egg Teases Iconic Weapon Return
Yasuke and Naoe from Assassin's Creed Shadows
Author
Diana Croce
Diana is a freelance Gaming Writer for GameSkinny and loves all kinds of stories, even though she’s too lazy for most things that aren’t games. She likes writing about the smaller, unique indie games that slip through the cracks, and she's been doing so since 2022.