Gunner-Minutemen War
Vault 81door
Vault 81, the location of the first major confrontation between
Gunner and Minutemen forces during the war.
Date February 2288 - 1 October 2289
Location Commonwealth (Boston, Newton, The Fens, South Boston, Quincy, Everett, Cambridge)
Result Minutemen victory
GunnerSymbol Gunners


FO4 Minutemen Flag Minutemen

Vault 81 Vault 81
Beantown Flag1 Beantown
Atom Cats Atom Cats

BoS East Coast Flag 2287 Brotherhood of Steel

Commanders and leaders
GunnerSymbol Captain Wes


FO4 Minutemen Flag Preston Garvey

FO4 Minutemen Flag Ronnie Shaw
Vault 81 Gwen McNamara
Beantown Flag1 Tower Tom

Unknown Unknown

The Gunner-Minutemen War, also known as the Vault 81 War was a military conflict primarily between the Gunners and the Provisional Commonwealth Government, also known as the Commonwealth Minutemen. The broke out in February of 2288 after the Gunners attempted to annex Vault 81 by force. The vault dwellers resisted the forceful annexation and instead called upon the Minutemen for assistance, beginning open hostilities.

The war was the culmination of a long period of hostilities and poor relations between the Minutemen and the Gunners; just one year earlier the Gunners had captured the city of Quincy after a prolonged siege against Minutemen Colonel Ezra Hollis, in what is more commonly known as the Quincy Massacre. Although the Minutemen were pushed to the point of near extinction, they successfully rebuilt, becoming one of the Commonwealth's largest factions, and attempting to form a Commonwealth-wide government by 2288.


Vault 81Edit

Main Article: History of Vault 81

Vault 81 was one of several vaults created pre-war by Vault-Tec to service the Greater Boston area, along with Vault 76, 95, 75, 111, and 114. Do the intervention of Vault 81's first overseer, Dr. Olivette, its inhabitants were spared from Vault-Tec's experimentation, and Vault 81 went on to operate as a normal vault.

In 2277 Overseer Baht opened the vault for the first time, allowing communication and trade with the outside world. Although this provided a badly needed source of food and other vital supplies, especially parts and tools to repair the vault's deteriorating systems many residents maintained an isolationist or even xenophobic mindset, distrusting any outsider who was allowed to enter.

Brotherhood of SteelEdit

The east coast chapter of the Brotherhood of Steel was established in the Capital Wasteland (formerly Washington D.C.) around the year 2254, led by Owyn Lyons. Although the Brotherhood radically changed under Elder Lyons' approximately thirty years of rule, focusing on rebuilding and aiding the people of the wasteland over simply hording technology, by 2283 Lyons was dead, and the Brotherhood became led by Arthur Maxson. Maxson returned the Brotherhood to its original mission of preserving technology over helping the people of the Capital Wasteland, which led the Brotherhood to discover the Institute and its synth program.

Under Maxson the Brotherhood would launch a major campaign to the Commonwealth, with the goal of eradicating the Institute and its synths. A giant airship, known as the Prydwen, was at the center of the expedition, arriving at the Boston Airport in 2287. Although the Institute would be destroyed, the Brotherhood remained in the Commonwealth, turning its attention toward hunting down any Institute remnants and slowly incorporating the Commonwealth into its order. Around the time of the war's outbreak between the Gunners and Minutemen, the Brotherhood was preparing its own attacks against the Gunners, taking advantage of their weakened state. Specifically the Brotherhood wanted to secure any threats to its settlements in East Boston and Winthrop, and as such sought to capture the Gunner installations in neighboring Boston.

Quincy MassacreEdit

Main Article: Quincy Massacre

In 2287, in response to a vision of Mama Murphy, Sturges the mechanic requested aid from the Commonwealth Minutemen. A small detachment of Minutemen under the command of Colonel Ezra Hollis, including in their number Preston Garvey and Clint, arrived to defend the town. This turned out to be in the nick of time, as a large force of Gunners led by Baker were already laying siege to it. The Minutemen were initially able to drive them off by attacking from the rear.

Hollis moved his force into the town, where Sturges registered his unease about how few of them there were. Preston Garvey worked with Sturges to reinforce defenses and build walkways between buildings. While the Gunners attack the walls daily, the town had enough ammunition and defenses to hold out in the short term. Hollis requested more back-up from other units, none of whom arrived due to internal disputes. Veteran Minuteman Clint arrived at Quincy gates, but while Hollis believed he was answering the call for reinforcements, Clint revealed he had defected to the Gunners and is the one leading the attack. Unsuccessful at convincing Col. Hollis and the mayor to stand down, Clint leaves to renew the assault.

Under the leadership of Clint, the Gunners attack Quincy from the overhanging highway under the cover of darkness, turning the town into a shooting gallery. The battle quickly devolved into a massacre for the Minutemen and inhabitants of Quincy, as was over in under an hour. All of the town's civilians and Minutemen were killed except for Preston Garvey and nineteen others, who were able to escape to Jamaica Plain. Hollis was taken prisoner, and according to Clint was not able to believe the latter's betrayal until Clint killed Hollis himself.

Post-Quincy EraEdit

The battle dealt a killing blow to the Commonwealth Minutemen as they were, with the movement too few in number and rife with distrust to hold together. Those that remained who did not arrive to defend Quincy faded away. The Gunners dispatched a further detail to finish off Preston's group. They killed several more of them at Jamaica Plain, but were unable to stop the rest of them escaping. Preston's continued attempts to protect his group of survivors eventually took them to the ruins of Lexington. Feral ghouls whittled their number down to eight, before Jared's raider band, lead by Gristle, killed a further three and forced the five survivors to take shelter in Concord's Museum of Freedom.

The fortune of the Minutemen would change however after their successful victory at the Museum of Freedom and the discovery and settlement of Sanctuary to the northwest. Sanctuary would grow into a major city in the Commonwealth, attracting new settlers and recruits for a reformed Minutemen under Preston Garvey. Over the course of the next few months the Minutemen would manage to unite many settlements in the north of Boston, retake their headquarters at the Castle, and settle strategic locations, such as Spectacle Island. By early 2288 they had risen to become a major faction in the Commonwealth, possibly accounting for the largest number of inhabitants of any nation or faction, albeit heavily dispersed. With the destruction of the Institute at the hands of a united group of settlements, the Minutemen proposed a reforming of the Provisional Commonwealth Government in early 2288, with Preston Garvey as its first leader.

The Gunners continued to grow their influence and power across the Commonwealth as well. Clint was promoted to commander of Quincy by Captain Wes for his actions, and would become the leader of Quincy and the surrounding area. Determined that the town would not be taken in the same way it had fallen to the Gunners, he fortified the highway, set up a radio tower and captured two sets of power armor in order to defend it. By 2288 the Gunners had rebuilt much of Quincy and heavily fortified the surrounding area with outposts and walls. Their power in the south skyrocketed following the decision to allow settlers back into Quincy. Soon after the ruins had turned into a major city under Gunner control, allowing new avenues for recruitment and supplying the Gunner army. Other Gunner locations followed suit as well, turning the mercenary network into a nation of settlements of their own to rival the Minutemen.



  • Siege of Vault 81 (February 2288 - Present)
  • Siege of Vault 88 (1 March 2288 - Present)
  • Battle of the Northern Star (5 April 2288) - Minutemen seize the Northern Star after an initial blunder in late March; Minutemen advance from Warwick to Quincy delayed into April.
  • Battle of Newton Heights (8 April - 19 June 2288) - Gunner victory; Minutemen attack on Newton is repulsed, beginning a prolonged back-and-forth series of skirmishes and the Siege of Oberland.
  • Siege of Oberland (28 June - 1 October 2288) - Gunner victory; Oberland station is captured by the Gunners.
  • Battle of Wakefield (12-14 April 2288) - Minutemen victory; successfully secure the General Atomics Galleria, allowing passage into Wakefield and a surprise attack against Gunner positions near Lake Quannapowitt.
  • Battle of Greentech (20-25 May 2288) - Brotherhood victory; Gunners lose control of Greentech Genetics and several positions in Cambridge.
  • Assault on Custom House Tower (20 May 2288) - Brotherhood victory; Custom House Tower is captured.
  • First Battle of South Boston (28 May - 14 June 2288) - Gunner victory; Minutemen withdraw from South Boston to the Castle, Gunners capture Andrew Station and other outposts.
  • First Battle of Greygarden (16-17 June 2288) - Gunner victory; Greygarden is captured.
  • Battle of Malden (19-20 June 2288) - Minutemen victory; Malden is captured and the Gunners are pushed back to Vault 75 and surrounded.
  • Battle of Fens Street (25 June 2288) - Inconclusive; Minutemen protect Hangman's Alley but suffer heavy casualties.
  • Siege of Vault 75 (1 July 2288 - Present)
  • Second Battle of Greygarden (6-14 July 2288) - Minutemen victory; Greygarden is recaptured from Gunners.
  • Second Battle of South Boston (15 July 2288 - Present)
  • Assault on Mass Fusion (1 September 2288) - Brotherhood victory; the Mass Fusion building is captured from the Gunners.
  • Battle of Hangman's Alley (2-6 October 2288) - Inconclusive; Hangman's Alley remains in Minutemen hands but is heavily damage. Minutemen and Gunner positions in The Fens both damaged by raider encroachments.
  • Second Siege of Oberland (10 October - 17 November 2288) - Minutemen victory; the Minutemen recapture the settlement of Oberland from the Gunners following the results of the first siege. Oberland proper is taken, but battles continue across Newton and the surrounding area.
  • Battle of Beantown (10 November 2288 - Present)
  • Battle of Quincy (28 December 2288 - Present)
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