Bethesda mistakenly rips art from Fallout: Nuka Break creator but manages to remedy the situation: 'So does this mean I'm officially a shill?'

Vault Boy demonstrates how to duck and cover
(Image credit:

Bethesda got into a bit of a mix-up recently when an artist spotted his work in Fallout 76's Atomic Shop, attached to the Fourth of July-themed Flag Waving Bundle. That's not a problem by itself until you realise that he didn't sanction it. 

The artist in question is Zack Finfrock, the creator behind Fallout: Nuka Break, a fan film about a former Vault dweller who's searching the eastern California wasteland for an "ice-cold Nuka Cola". But he's also pretty well known for placing Vault Boy in various memes. You can see those images on FinFrock's Twitter, including my personal favourite—Vault Boy as Charlie Kelly obsessing over Pepe Silvia. 

The memes are pretty good, and they're so loved by the community that you've probably seen them floating around before, even if you don't follow Finfrock. "Look, I love Fallout 76, and it seems someone on the art team loves my Fallout memes," Finfrock says. "So Jon Rush [director of Fallout 76], who do I talk to about this? I get that I don't own the Vault Boy and whatnot, but you could have reached out so I could draw a newer, better version for your Atom Shop image." 

Luckily, the misunderstanding didn't go unnoticed, as Rush got back to Finfrock pretty quickly. Apparently, the mistake was down to a "mix-up with an external vendor," according to DMs between Finfrock and Rush which were posted to the former's Twitter. After this, the art was quickly taken off the Atomic Shop, and Rush apologised further for the issue. 

But that wasn't the end of it. In a subsequent DM, Rush offered Finfrock a contract "for some artwork for our message of the day and bundles assets for a future patch." No specifics yet, but it's a good way for Bethesda to round off this mix-up. 

"The door is now open," Finfrock says. "Thank you to everyone who shared the initial tweet. Can't wait to share more when I can." After the dust settled, Finfrock reposted that tweet and added, "So, does this mean I'm officially a shill?" 

Finfrock's art and other Fallout projects, while not canon, are an essential part of Fallout. One of the most endearing parts of Fallout 76 is its community, so it's always nice to see creators treated with the respect they deserve. While Bethesda should have done its due diligence before the issue arose, I'm glad Finfrock came out the other side better off.  

Elie Gould
News Writer

Elie is a news writer with an unhealthy love of horror games—even though their greatest fear is being chased. When they're not screaming or hiding, there's a good chance you'll find them testing their metal in metroidvanias or just admiring their Pokemon TCG collection. Elie has previously worked at TechRadar Gaming as a staff writer and studied at JOMEC in International Journalism and Documentaries – spending their free time filming short docs about Smash Bros. or any indie game that crossed their path.