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So I found the answer to this question fascinating and it got me to thinking, "I wonder how this compares to other Bethesda games...?"

I've read quite a bit about the comparison being "bigger than" Oblivion, Fallout 3, Fallout New Vegas, etc, but I want to actually be able to do the math exactly to compare all the maps. The only sticking point is that I have no idea how big any of the maps are exactly in terms of "game cell" length and width.

For example, in the linked question, the answer states that Skyrim is 119 x 94 = 11186 in-game "cells". Those are the numbers I'd like to find for the other games in question.

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Sooo basically you want someone to rip out the height maps for the Fallout games and count the pixels? – James Nov 9 '12 at 18:42
@James That's more than unnecessary. The game itself has a programmatic concept of cells. All you have to do is get the cell coordinates of the NE and SW corners and do arithmetic. – SevenSidedDie Nov 9 '12 at 19:02
@SevenSidedDie Still seems like an awful lot of work for very little use. – Frank Nov 9 '12 at 19:12
@fbueckert Modders need to have a detailed map of cell coordinates, so it might be a silly amount of work for this question, but it's eminently useful in a modding context. I've already found the answer for FO3, now working on FNV... – SevenSidedDie Nov 9 '12 at 19:36
It is true that for this question alone, the work needed may be not be worth it. However, I figured someone might have already done the work while modding, just as @SevenSidedDie suggested. I've only ever played all these games on a console (PS3) and so am unable to simply do the work myself (well, that, and I'm entirely unsure where to even begin). I really appreciate any work that is done to answer this! Thanks! – JToland Nov 9 '12 at 19:57
up vote 14 down vote accepted

Fallout 3

According to this modder's resource plugin for Fallout 3, the NE corner cell has the coordinates (25, 34) and the SW corner is (-34, -27). That gives a total width of 60 cells and a total height of 62 cells, for a total of 3,720 cells. That's including the unplayable areas outside the rectangle borders, though.

Counting only the width and height of the playable area, it appears to be 51 cells at the widest point and 51 high, or approximately 2,601 cells. Even then those aren't all player-accessible, as the invisible-wall border is irregularly-shaped, but that's close enough for comparison to other Bethsoft games.

Fallout: New Vegas

Unfortunately I couldn't find a modders' map for New Vegas, which surprised me – I guess the tales of its editor being riddled with bugs and preventing the modding scene from really taking off have some merit to them.

Instead, I set out into the Mojave Wasteland to do some direct surveying. (I'll update this when I return, if the geckos don't get me first.)

The geckos didn't get me, but only because I used god mode. It turns out that the end of the world did some damage to the surveyor's tools though: the toggleDebugText console command doesn't work in New Vegas, so we're going to have to rely on object coordinates and do some conversion.

Revealing all map-markers using the console, I fast-travelled to the westernmost map marker (Charleston Cave). Moving further west (while no-clipping) to the furthest-west placed object (a bunch of rocks above Jacobstown) I took a reading:

> player.getpos x

Dividing by the width of one cell (4096 position coordinates) and rounding down that gives us the cell's approximate X coordinate: -29.

Repeating this for x or y at various other locations (north of Nellis Array: 161736.50, east of Legate's Camp: 111398.05, southwest of Crescent Canyon East: -127206.66), the survey gives a maximum width of 57 cells and a maximum height of 71 cells, for a very, very rough overestimate of a rectangle of 4,047 cells inside of which the invisible-wall border is irregularly inscribed.

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I very much look forward to hearing about what method you use to do the "direct surveying". Thanks for that extra effort! – JToland Nov 9 '12 at 20:00
The New Vegas map is 61x61 cells, but only about half of them seem actually accessible in-game. – Martin Sojka Nov 9 '12 at 20:10
@MartinSojka That map's grid corresponds to in the in-game map display, which doesn't match the actual game engine's concept of cells boundaries and sizes. It's very helpful for seeing the shape of the playable area, though! – SevenSidedDie Nov 9 '12 at 20:49
Wow, impressive work @SevenSidedDie! So that would mean that the entire Mojave is only 5.18 sq. miles, assuming the 3317.76 square meters per cell number from the linked question. That seems quite small, especially considering that the real "Searchlight" location is 50 miles south of Las Vegas and 20 miles east of Nipton. Of course, I wouldn't really expect the game to be to scale. – JToland Nov 9 '12 at 21:19
@JToland Yeah, Bethsoft games tend not to be to scale. They're impressively large open worlds, but not as large as they'd be in real life. Imagine trying to fill all that landscape! Or walk across it. I simultaneously dislike and am thankful that the worlds are scaled down for playability. – SevenSidedDie Nov 9 '12 at 21:54

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