Fallout: New Vegas is the greatest game of all-time. It’s already been scientifically proven, so you can’t argue with it. Full of great storytelling, player choice, interesting characters, and great locations to explore, there are plenty of things to see and do. I’ve probably spent over 1,000 hours playing New Vegas since it came out, and I don’t regret a single second of it. It’s also a great antidote if you’ve been struck by the horrors of Fallout 76, and, like me, you feel Bethesda ruined the Fallout franchise even before that broken disaster of a game.
One of the things that makes New Vegas so great is its big, open world. Truth be told, the world itself isn’t all that large, it wasn’t even that big when it came out. But what makes it stand out from other open world games is the sheer density. It’s not full of boring, repetitive mini-games or pointless locations like others, but locations that are either vital to quests, or contain a vital piece of world-building that makes New Vegas feel real.
Thing is, a lot of these locations are hidden, too. There are some prime pieces of real estate in New Vegas that the game doesn’t point you to, which is great. You have to find these places yourself, which only adds to the realism. But if you’re lazy, or if you just haven’t found them yet, here’s a list of 25 hidden locations in New Vegas you might not have found yet.
24 The Fiend Residence
Known simply as “the Fiend house” after the gang that lives there, this tiny house is located south of Horowitz Farmstead, and north of Miguel’s Pawn Shop. There are usually two Fiends guarding the outside, and two more inside.
What’s remarkable about this location is how unremarkable it is. No quests relate to this building, the people there aren’t important, there are no super awesome weapons hiding inside. What makes it all the more strange is that all the other tiny houses that look just like it in the area are non-enterable, so why is this specific house different?
23 The Crashed Vertibird
Tucked away far to the south of the map you’ll find a crashed Vertibird, Fallout’s version of a helicopter. And when I say crashed, I mean crashed. It landed so hard it’s sunk several feet into the ground. That hasn’t damaged two Sentry Bots or Mister Gutsys it was transporting though, who’ll attack if you get too close.
Here, you’ll find the Tesla-Beaton Prototype cannon, a fairly useless weapon named after Kate Beaton of Hark! A Vagrant fame. The spot is also an easy trigger point for Arcade Gannon’s For Auld Lang Syne quest.
22 Griffith Peak
Griffith Peak is an unmarked location in New Vegas that also technically impossible to get to. Located outside of Jacobstown, near Mount Charleston, Griffith Peak is the highest natural point on the New Vegas map. The only problem is, you can’t actually get there thanks to copious invisible walls.
It would have been fun to be able to climb the mountain and blow up Super Mutants in one of the few areas of the map covered in snow. I guess we’ll have to wish for a nuclear winter somewhere else.
21 The Humble Sealed Sewers
Not many people know this, but underneath the majority of New Vegas is a vast sewer system. Much of these sewers were rendered un-enterable before the game was shipped, for fear of the player hopping in at Primm and skipping straight to Vegas. There are still a handful of sewers left in the game, but they don’t go anywhere, and they don’t contain anything of note.
Except for the Sealed Sewers, which is only accessible through another part of the sewer system, making it hard to find even if you do know it exists. Here, you’ll find The Humble Cudgel, a lead pipe variant that’s useless to anyone not playing a melee build.
20 Scorpion Burrow
Another unmarked location, the Scorpion Burrow is located halfway between Crescent Canyon West and Mojave Drive-in. It’s a spot of the map where there’s not a whole lot going on, and because it’s located in the middle of a sandstorm-engulfed dry lake bed, it’s easy to miss.
Scorpion Burrow is another one of those locations, like Fiend House, that has literally no reason to exist. There’s nothing of any value or note there, except a handful of Radscorpions and a Radscorpion Queen. But it doesn’t exist to have a point, it exists for the sake of world building. That area is surrounded by Radscorpions, so where do they come from? The Scorpion Burrow, of course.
19 Ivanpah Race Track
The Ivanpah Race Track is another unmarked location in New Vegas that doesn’t need to exist. Like other locales on this list, there’s nothing there. It’s just an empty race track in the middle of the desert. But it’s there for flavor, to illustrate how the world used to be before the nuclear apocalypse.
This pitiful track with a short circular road and one checkboard banner can be found just north of the Nipton Road Pit Stop, which coincidently is how that location got its name.
18 Cueva Cuarache
Cueva Cuarache can be found in Zion Canyon from the Honest Hearts DLC. Just head east from the creatively titled “General Store” where you go for the quest Tourist Trap, and you’ll find the final resting place for Randall Clark. Clark has a long and fascinating backstory that you can discover through terminals located throughout Zion.
As for Cueva Cuarache itself, what’s notable is that you’ll find several spore plants and creatures from Vault 22, leading to some interesting and scary questions.
17 Mesquite Mountains Lean-To
The Mesquite Mountains Lean-to is another location nestled deep to the southwest of the map, just beyond the California Sunset Drive-in. Like several other unmarked locations, there’s no real point to this little makeshift shelter, other than to provide some flavor to the world.
And that’s what this is. It’s a tiny shelter someone set up at some point between some rocks, complete with a mattress, a container that presumably kept their scant few belongings, and a barrel they might have used to cook food. That’s the beauty of New Vegas, there are so many little places like this with no real story, leaving you to fill in the blanks yourself.
16 The One
On the complete opposite side of the map from the Mesquite Mountains Lean-to, to the far northeast, you’ll find “The One.” This is an un-detonated nuclear bomb (the same asset from Megaton in Fallout 3) just chilling out in the desert by itself. You can only find The One if you have the Wild Wasteland trait, which is itself wild seeing as how there’s nothing strange about the bomb or its location.
At The One’s spot, you’ll find some Super Mutants (possibly drawn to the radiation the bomb emits) and an empty cave. If you have the science skill, you can recover energy cells, microfusion cells, and sensor modules.
15 Great Khan Armory
The Great Khan Armory is a funny location, as its one of the few hidden locations hiding in plain sight. As the name gives away, it’s where the Great Khans store their weapons and ammo. But in a move that’s either stupid or genius, they’ve hidden it the most bizarre spot.
Even before you get to the Red Rock Canyon (where the Khans live), you’ll find a mostly destroyed house. It’s non-descript, with nothing of note inside. Except for a trap door inside that you can’t see without entering the ruins of the house. I’m not sure if this was supposed to be a hidden location but hidden it is.
14 Bootjack Cavern
Bootjack Cavern is really only of note if you’re doing the quest Bleed Me Dry, and need some Fire Gecko Eggs. This otherwise pointless little cave is hidden just southwest of Clark Field, hidden away in a part of the map where there isn’t a whole heck of a lot going on.
Inside the cavern, you’ll find some Fire Geckos (surprising, I know) and some deceased prospectors. They’ll have some ammo, and possibly a Slave Scarf, an item of clothing that can be hard to find out in the wild.
13 Mercenary Camp
Travel north of the Horowitz farmstead and you’ll come across a campfire and some planks of wood around it acting as seats. It’s not the most fascinating location in the world admittedly, even with the handful of mercenaries that are there. But what is there if you don’t have the Wild Wasteland trait makes this one of the places a lot of players will run to first.
Without Wild Wasteland, you’ll find that one of the mercenaries has the YCS/186, an incredibly powerful variant of the Gauss Rifle if your character has a high energy stat. But with Wild Wasteland, you’ll instead find the wreckage of an alien spaceship (this is Fallout, after all) containing the Alien Blaster, a far less useful weapon.
12 Lakelurk Cove
Due east of Blue Paradise Vacation Rentals (another location that deserves to be on this list), you’ll find Lakelurk Cove. As you probably could imagine, this is an area heavily populated by Lakelurks. And I mean heavily populated. There could be anywhere from 10 to 20 in this spot.
Other than the big nasties, you’ll find this is a small patch of land divided by a bit of water in the middle, and a cave on the right. Inside the cave, you’ll find a deceased mercenary and a couple of duffel bags, that don’t have anything great in them. This location is more about the challenge than the reward.
11 The Devil's Throat
While a marked location on your map, The Devil’s Throat is so far out of the way there’s little reason to go out that way. It’s another of those locations that if you didn’t hear about it online, or go out of your way to explore every square inch of the map, you’ll likely never hear about this place.
The Devil’s Throat is a crater all the way in the far east of the map, full of radioactive barrels. But there is something here, namely the CZ57 Avenger mini-gun variant.
Just east of Red Rock Canyon you'll find Chance's Map. This is a map drawn in the ground of the Mojave area, used by Chance and his Khan buddies to navigate. Who is Chance? He was a big character in the New Vegas graphic novel, All Roads. The story follows Chance, Jessup, and McMurphy (the three Khans with Benny who try to eliminate you at the start of the game) on their treacherous journey to Boulder City.
The map in-game is noticeably different from the one in the graphic novel, featuring several props rather than text written in the dirt. It's also in a different spot, outside the road to Red Rock rather than overlooking the settlement.
10 Old Nuclear Test Site
The Old Nuclear Test Site (while not the most original of names) is an interesting location. In the far south of the map, south of the Legion Safehouse, you’ll find a chainlink fence surrounding wooden shacks and some ghouls. This is where the US Military once tested nuclear weapons.
This location is based on a real-world place, the Nevada Test Site, located 65 miles northwest of Las Vegas. 100 atomic bombs were tested here, which could be seen from Vegas hotel balconies. There a couple of neat goodies here, such as a comment by Arcade, some Powder Gangers, and the “[Diary] of Trash.”
9 Sniper's Nest
Due west of Cottonwood Cove, you’ll find the “Sniper’s Nest.” It’s a difficult location to access seeing as how it’s partially down a cliff, and from a distance may not look like it’s worth your time. But it is.
Here, you’ll find not only a Blue Star Sunset Sarsaparilla Cap but also the Gobi Campaign sniper rifle. And a fun fact for anyone who likes Boone: this is likely the spot where he watched his wife get sold into slavery at Cottonwood before putting her out of her misery.
8 Little Yangtze
Little Yangtze is a callout to a dark time in US history. At the start of World War II, the Roosevelt administration rounded up foreign citizens and placed them in internment camps, for fear of them being spies. Little Yangtze is the Fallout version of said camps, though for Chinese American citizens at the outbreak of the war between China and the US.
Located in the northwest of the Big MT in the Old World Blues DLC, walking through Little Yangtze is like walking through one of America’s failings. Many prisoners, young and old, either perished or turned to ghouls. Some interns didn’t speak English, giving the guards an excuse to exercise violence. It’s a harrowing little location, and one only Fallout could pull off.
7 Train Station Hiding A Weird Message
“Train Station” is such an unremarkable location as to not even have a name. It’s squeezed in between two bridges just a few yards north of the REPCONN Headquarters and doesn’t look like much of anything.
That theme is continued inside where you’ll only find a Doctor’s Bag and some pre-war money. And a toy car that’s labeled “Take.” If you try to pick it up, you’ll get a pop-up message saying “Good! Now press RS (R3 for PS3) again to let go of the skull,” on consoles, or “press Z to let go.” This is likely some kind of test item used during development and was somehow accidentally placed in the station. It doesn’t do anything, but it’s a neat little peek behind the curtains.
6 Kingdom Of The Crystal Refrigerator
Nobody likes Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. Crippled by bad acting, terrible CG, and action too absurd for even Indiana Jones, this movie just isn’t any good. But there’s one infamous scene from early in the film that’s been recreated in New Vegas.
Near the start of the game appropriately enough, when you first leave Goodsprings, you’ll spot an oddly placed refrigerator. If you have the Wild Wasteland perk, you’ll find inside a skeleton wearing a hat that looks oddly similar to Indiana Jones’ iconic headwear.
5 Chance's Grave
Chance’s Grave isn’t located far from Goodsprings, but it’s near the area the game tells you many times not to go to because it’s surrounded by Deathclaws and Cazadores. You’ll also need a shovel, and who carries around a shovel in New Vegas? With it, you’ll be able to plunder Chance’s Knife.
Not long after Chance drew his map from a previous entry, he met his untimely demise at the hands of some Fiends, Psycho, and Benny. It's a long (and good story) so I won't spoil the whole thing here. I'll just say this: his friends, Jessup and McMurphy, aren't so bad after all.
4 Deathclaw Promontory
Far to the southeast of the map, in a place that looks like you can’t go to as it’s beyond Cottonwood Cove, lies a place. It’s not a fun place, being the most spooky couple hundred of yards on the entire map. This is where you go if you want to perish.
It’s called the Deathclaw Promontory.
Here you’ll find 36 Deathclaws, a collection of normal beasties to mothers to alpha males, depending on your level. What do you get if you survive this gauntlet? Not much. A set of T-51b Power Armor, Remnant’s Power Armor, a Tri-beam Laser Rifle, and some Deathclaw eggs.
3 Luke Skywalker's Aunt And Uncle
Two people who aren’t a fan of Star Wars are probably Luke Skywalker’s Aunt and Uncle from the start of the film, Owen and… *checks note* Beru. They perish at the hands of the Empire, their bodies burned and left lying together, reaching out for one another.
Well, with the Wild Wasteland trait, you’ll see that afterward they were teleported to Earth to the past. Or would it be the future? At Nipton, you’ll find one of several burned out, half-destroyed homes. One, containing a hostile Mister Gutsy, has the couple specifically labeled Owen and Beru.
2 Fry's Dog
Lonesome Road is a very sad piece of DLC. Partly because it’s the last piece of content for New Vegas, partly because it’s by far the worst part of New Vegas, and partly because of this reference.
In the Cave of the Abaddon, you’ll come across the skeletal remains of a guy called Sunflower Summers. With the Wild Wasteland perk, you’ll also find a fossilized dog labeled Seymour. This is a reference to the infamous Futurama episode Jurassic Bark. In this episode, Fry’s dog, Seymour, waits for his owner, not knowing Fry was teleported to the future. Seymour waits for Fry outside his work for the rest of his life, before Fry finds him in a fossilized form in a museum far into the future.
1 Developer Test Cells
Fallout 76 may be a disaster, but it’s in the news right now because players discovered a secret developer test room where they test items for the game. The room wasn’t supposed to be accessible by players, but this is Bethesda, so of course, it was discovered with relative ease.
New Vegas has its own test rooms, called cells in the game’s engine. Totaling 29 rooms, these cells were used for testing anything from weapons, mentats, traps, and even bathrooms. While inaccessible via traditional means, they are easy to get to. You can mod the game to give you doors to them, or you can simply open the console, type in “COC” and then the name of the cell you want to visit, such as my favorite, “TestJoshWeapons.”