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Fallout 4 tips and tricks, with a side of secrets: Wasteland survival 111

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Fallout 4 is a big, big game. There is a lot to see and even more to do, and you can easily lose 100+ hours of your life to it. With that in mind, we have a few Fallout 4 tips and tricks to help you on your way and maybe save you an hour or ten.

As with all of our guides, this one will be as spoiler free as possible. That is made a little easier by the nature of the game though. There is so much variety, and so many ways to approach it, that most experiences will be completely unique.

With that said, this guide will stay away from all story specifics. There is some talk of locations that aren’t in themselves spoilers, but some may wish to be completely surprised at what the post-apocalyptic Boston area – known in the game as the Commonwealth – looks like, specifically what survived and what didn’t.

As mentioned, this is a big game. It’s so big that there are certainly plenty of secrets and Easter eggs we haven’t come across yet. We’ll keep looking though, and we will update this Fallout 4 guide often. In the meantime, if you have any Fallout 4 tips and tricks of your own, or some Fallout 4 secrets, let us know in the comments below!

March 28, 2016: Updated with DLC and mod info!

Companions

Fallout 4 comapnions

There are 13 companions found throughout Fallout 4.

When you recruit a companion, there are a few immediate benefits. To begin with, you’ll have a second gun to help you fight enemies. They can’t be killed (just wounded), so you can also use them as bait if you find yourself facing an enemy that’s too tough for you and you need to run (they always catch up). They make excellent mobile storage lockers too.

Companions have their limits on how much they can carry, but it essentially doubles your carrying capacity. If they are full and you are nearing your limit too, just fast travel to wherever you call home, store goods for later, then head back out. Alternatively, you can travel to a place where you can trade items, but the process takes longer.

Perhaps most importantly though, each companion builds a rapport with you based on your actions and decisions, and maxing out that relationship earns you a perk. Different characters react differently though, so you may need to pick your companions carefully.

If a character is essentially good, stealing, for example, won’t endear you to them to you, but helping strangers will. If you anger a companion enough, they can refuse to travel with you. On the flip side, if the companion is a mercenary and during a mission you demand more money from an NPC, they might like that.

With certain characters, this can lead to a romance option. If you successfully romance a companion and sleep while they are travelling with you, you will earn the temporary “Lovers Embrace” boost, granting you 15-percent XP. You can romance multiple companions without negative consequences.

Here is a list of the Fallout 4 companions, where to find them, what perk they offer, and if you can romance them. (Thanks to Lazygamer for filling in a few of the gaps):

Fallout 4 comapnionsCait

  • Location: Combat Zone
  • Romance: Yes
  • Perk: Trigger Rush (AP regenerates faster when health is below 25-percent)

Codsworth

  • Location: Sanctuary
  • Romance: No
  • Perk: Robot Sympathy (Additional 10-percent damage resistance against energy weapons)

Curie

  • Location: Vault 81
  • Romance: Yes
  • Perk: Combat Medic (Heal 100 HP if player health is under 10-percent)

DeaconFallout 4 comapnions

  • Location: Old North Church
  • Romance: No
  • Perk: Cloak & Dagger (Additional 20-percent damage to sneak attacks; Stealth Boy effects last 20-percent longer)

Dogmeat

  • Red Rocket Truck Stop
  • Romance: No
  • Perk: None

Hancock

  • Location: Goodneighbor
  • Romance: Yes
  • Perk: Isodoped (Critical hit recharge speed increases by 20-percent, plus an additional 250 rad points)

MacReady

  • Location: The Third Rail
  • Romance: Yes
  • Perk: Killshot (Headshot accuracy increases by 20-percent in V.A.T.S.)Fallout 4 comapnions

Nick Valentine

  • Location: Vault 114
  • Romance: No
  • Perk: Close to Metal (Hack computers 50-percent faster, and one additional guess)

Old Longfellow (available in the Far Harbor DLC)

  • Location: Far Harbor
  • Romance: No
  • Perk: Hunter knowledge (Reduce damage and power resistance in animals and sea creatures)

Paladin Danse

  • Location: Cambridge Police Station
  • Romance: Yes
  • Perk: Know Your Enemy (Additional 20-percent damage against feral ghouls, super mutants, and synths)

Fallout 4 comapnionsPiper

  • Location: Diamond City
  • Romance: Yes
  • Perk: Gift of Gab (Double XP for discovering new locations and speed challenges)

Preston Garvey

  • Location: Museum of Freedom
  • Romance: Yes
  • Perk: United We Stand (Additional 20-percent damage and 20-percent defense when fighting three or more enemies)

Strong

  • Location: Trinity Tower
  • Romance: No
  • Perk: Berserk (Additional 20-percent melee damage when your health is under 25-percent)

X6-88

  • Location: The Institute
  • Romance: No
  • Perk: Shield Harmonics (Increases energy weapon resistance by 20-percent)

When you approach a new companion to join you, you will be prompted with a message asking you where you want to send the current companion (assuming you have multiple settlements unlocked). If you want to reteam with that previous companion later, you can find them wandering around the settlement you sent them to.

  • If you give a companion a more powerful weapon than what they start with, they will use it – along with any ammo you gave them.
  • Don’t sell the companion’s default weapon – as long as they are using it, they will have infinite ammo.
  • There are seven romanceable companions, regardless of what gender you are.
  • When you start the game, you will have two choices of companions: Codsworth the Mr. Handy-like robot, or Dogmeat.
  • If your companion kills an enemy, you don’t receive XP unless you also damaged it (just shoot it once and you get credit).
  • Once you earn the perk from maxing out the relationship with a companion, you have it regardless of whether or not the companion is with you.
  • If you lose track of a companion and didn’t specifically send them somewhere (it occasionally happens when the story forces a companion on you), look for the sent off companion where you first met them, or where they were if you’ve previously sent them off.
  • Some companions can pick advanced locks, while others can hack higher level terminals. Experiment by trying to send the to the lock.
  • Dogmeat can occasionally be sent into rooms locked by magnetically sealed doors that would otherwise require a high level hack. Point at a specific weapon or item behind the glass door, then send dogmeat.
  • Although not technically a companion, you can romance Magnolia, the singer in the Third Rail. This leads to a one night stand, but you’ll need a high charisma level (drink beer until you hit level 10, and wear an outfit that increases your charisma).
  • Be wary giving companions explosives to hold. They will use them, often at horrible times.
  • If you are about to enter a security area where you need to navigate carefully, crouch into stealth to stop your companions from running in. You may want to tell them to stay
  • If you are playing the game with an emphasis on stealth, you may want to leave the companions at home. They can push you out of cover, wander into the middle of enemies and break your stealth, and generally make it tough to stay unseen. (Thank to Jeremy Simmons for the tip!)
  • If you choose to leave the companion at home, build up the “Lone Wander” perk (you may also want to invest in perks that increase how much you can carry).

Create your character

Fallout 4 tips and tricks

When you first begin the game, you will be asked to create your character, choose their gender, and assign a few perk points. You will find places in the Commonwealth where you can change your look and hairstyle, but choose wisely with the initial perks. The look is aesthetic, the points are important.

When the game begins, you will be approached by a Vault Tec official asking you to answer some questions. When you do, you will be given 21 perk points to assign as you see fit. These will be in addition to the seven perk points already assigned to you (you will start with one point in each category).

  • You can easily change between first-person and third-person. When you do you can see your glorious creation, but otherwise it’s just a matter of preference on how you want to play.
  • Your equipment changes how you look, and every weapon mod changes the look of your weapon.
  • Here are 20 of the best (and funniest) recreations of known people and characters, courtesy of Dorkly.com.
  • And a few more from Kotaku.
  • The barber in Diamond City offers a few haircuts that aren’t available at the start of the game.

DLCfirst Fallout 4 DLC

The first batch of DLC includes three pieces of content, all three of which are available now.

The first, Automatron, introduces new quests and items to the Commonwealth. It costs $9.99.

The second, “Wasteland Workshop,” adds new tools, including the option to tame Deathclaws. It runs $4.99.

The third, Far Harbor, is traditional DLC, and introduces a completely new region that Bethesda is calling its largest DLC landmass yet. Set off the coast of Maine, you will explore the new region containing quests, items, factions, and more. It costs $24.99 and is available now.

You can find more details on all three additions here.

The Season Pass costs $49.99.

  • Bethesda will continue to frequently update the game with patches and minor additions.
  • Although it has only announced three, expect more DLC throughout 2016 and possibly beyond.
  • We will have specific Fallout 4 tips and tricks specifically for the DLCs as they arrive.

Automatron

The first DLC for Fallout 4, titled Automatron, introduces a new mission (broken up into multiple parts) and a new ability: robot companion customization.

To access the DLC, you simply need to go to your radio in your Pip-Boy, and listen to the message. It repeats on a loop, so you can’t miss it. Once you’ve heard about an attack, you’ll have the mission available in your quest list. Once you’ve started it, the rest is fairly straightforward. You’ll explore two new locations on the way to confronting a new threat, the Mechanist.

Early on you’ll be given the ability to customize robots. Once this has been unlocked, you can create a robotics building station at any of your settlements. You will need to collect parts though, and some will also require you to level up the robotics perk. During the Mechanist missions you should keep Ada with you, but you can create new automatons at any point. You can create a nearly endless variety of companions, so get creative.

If you play through the missions from start to finish, you can complete the entire DLC in a few hours. The ability to build your own robotic army, however, will stay with you long after.

  • When you confront the Mechanist, you will have the option of jumping right into the fight, or trying to make peace. Either way, the results are ultimately the same, although you will get more of the story is you make peace.
  • If you have it, wear the Silver Shroud outfit. The Mechanist is a character from the fictional Silver Shroud serials. Wearing the outfit during the final confrontation offers new dialogue you won’t hear otherwise.
  • If you create an automaton, talk to it and have it travel with you, but then catch your previous companion and re-enlist them to come with you. Send the automaton to a settlement that needs some help with defense. It won’t count towards the defense stat, but they will help to defend the settlement.
  • When you are playing the Automatron missions, you should equip for combat with robots and energy weapons.

Far Harbor

The first DLC that introduces a new area to Fallout 4 is available now. Once installed, players will first need to tune into your radio, which will lead you to Nick Valentine’s office. From there you will accept a job to look for a missing girl, and that in turn takes you to a remote house in the northeast seciton of the map. After a quick check in with the parents of the missing girl, you are off to Far Harbor, a small island near Maine.

Once there, you will have a huge new area to explore, and several new primary and side missions. The new content promises around 15 hours of new material, all of which is unrelated to the previous campaign. There are some connections, of course, but for the most part the DLC is standalone.

The primary storyline in Far Harbor will put you in the middle of a conflict between the human settlement of Far Harbor, a synth community, and a faction of the Children of the Atom. You will constnatly walk a thin line, as the different factions are inherently at odds with each other. There is a relatively peaceful way to settle the grievances, but you won’t be able to complete it without getting at least a little bloody.

  • Before you leave for Far Harbor, make sure you are prepared for radiation. Either stock up on anti-rad items or wear power armor.
  • You’ll find the harpoon early on – use it often.
  • If you want to knwo more about the area, recruit Old Longfellow as your companion. As with all the companions, iif he likes you he will also offer a few personal missions.
  • While Old Longfellow makes a great guide, Nick Valentine is uniquely suited for the story in Far Harbor. Bringing him will add a lot to the story.
  • You will be able to purchase the highest power armor gear in the game, the Marine Combat Armor. Be prepared though – it will cost you 37,000 caps.
  • Save often. You will have a lot of choices to make, and many times there won’t be a “right” answer.

Nuka World

The final expansion for Fallout 4 is available now. Nuka World concludes Bethesda’s work on the game, and it confirmed that this is the “last one.”

The DLC introduces a new area, a former amusement park with multiple theme-based areas including “Safari Adventure, Dry Rock Gulch, Kiddie Kingdom, and the Galactic Zone.” You also have the option of becoming a raider.

Exploration

Fallout 4 tips and tricks

This is a pretty obvious one for anyone that has played Bethesda’s games (or most modern open-world titles), but the more you explore the better. In Fallout 4 you earn experience for each newly discovered location, plus you can fast travel to that spot any time after it has been discovered.

And if you are wondering how big Fallout 4 is, the answer is: big enough.

If you are looking to earn some experience points quickly and easily, just go exploring. You can even ignore most enemies – just run past them. You can quickly earn a ton of XP without doing a thing other than running.

  • Fallout 4 tips - PiperIf you discover a new location and you see items there highlighted in red, don’t take them. You may anger whoever you are stealing from, which could cause problems later on (or do, just prepare for potential consequences if caught).
  • The southwestern corner of the Commonwealth goes on far beyond the grid-like borders of the map in the Pip-Boy. Explore at your own risk though – there is a lot of radiation. Wearing a power suit is recommended.
  • If you are traveling in a heavily radiated area without a power suit, make it to a new location and then travel back to a doctor that can heal you of radiation sickness. You can then travel back to where you were and keep going until you are heavily radiated again. Rinse and repeat to explore the Glowing Sea early in the game.
  • Although there are some areas where you can’t access everything thanks to terminals and locks you need the upgraded perks for, you can still make it through all locations. Those locked areas are always just for bonus items, and you will never be stopped because you haven’t upgraded a specific perk.
  • When you reach Diamond City, there is a companion named Piper (pictured on the right). If you max out your relationship with her (you need to play as a good guy), her perk doubles the experience you receive from exploration.
  • This is something of a spoiler, but it is a very minor one that comes early in the game: there is another Vault located near the center of the map (slightly southwest of the center). Find it and do all the associated quests as soon as you can – it unlocks a doctor, a companion, possibly the best shop in the game, and more. You’ll be there often.
  • Head to Diamond City early. There are several quests to be found that open up the game.
  • There hasn’t been a lot of stuff found in the oceans yet, but that hasn’t stopped gamers from looking. If you want to do some exploring underwater, stock up on Mirelurk Cakes (dropped by dead Mirelurks), which let you breathe underwater. You’ll also need something to combat the radiation – either chems or power armor.
  • There are minor things underwater, including rates and shipwrecks. Nothing major though. There are also weird structures, but there doesn’t seem to be any practical purpose to them. DLC maybe?
  • One intrepid Reddit user took nearly 30 hours to map the underwater landscape of the game. The results were that there is some loot, but nothing major. You’ll waste more time looking than its worth. That may reinforce the idea that the DLC will focus on the ocean – it would be a waste otherwise.

Factions

Fallout 4 tips and tricks

This section will be a little vague given how spoiler intensive some of the details would be, but this should help to answer a few questions when it comes to picking factions.

To begin with, throughout Fallout 4, you’ll come into contact with multiple groups, each with their own plans for the Commonwealth. The first of these is the Minutemen, who you will meet very early on and join as part of the story. The others will appear as part of the main storyline, so you can’t miss them.

When you meet a new faction, feel free to try out their missions without concern. The NPCs occasionally make it seem like you are committing to one faction just by agreeing to join, but that isn’t the case (at least not at first). Try them all, and enjoy.

There are four factions in Fallout 4, and how involved you want to be with each of them is up to you – in fact, it becomes the crux of the story. At first, the missions are independent, and you can complete them without issue. Eventually though, missions for one faction will put you directly at odds with one another.

As a rule of thumb, if it sounds like a mission will have a huge negative impact on another faction, it probably will. That will cause you some problems, although not necessarily insurmountable ones.

There is also a point where you have to choose your allegiance. There is no “right” or “wrong” answer, so choose based on your preference. There are a few paths leading to this, but when you are on a mission to build a “relay,” (no spoilers), the faction you choose to help you will become your dominant faction. You can walk this back a bit if you change your mind later, but making a choice at this point will help determine the end of the game much later on.

  • Three of the four factions offer you a means to call them in as backup while wandering through the Wasteland. Use these during particularly tough missions to help with powerful enemies.
  • For the most part, you can choose a companion from one faction and not worry about it, but if you run a mission that specifically hurts their faction, they will dislike it – they may even “hate” it. If your bond isn’t strong, they may decide to stop traveling with you.
  • The Minutemen are the only neutral faction. You can safely continue to work with them without consequences from the other factions.
  • Complete the “Cambridge Police Station” quest early to unlock the second faction, and gain access to a lot of advanced weapons and armor.
  • Save before accepting any missions that sound like they have consequences. If you have other missions active from other factions, it may cancel them. Reload if you don’t want to go down that path yet.

Leveling

Fallout 4 SPECIAL Agility

Fallout 4’s leveling system is a little different from its predecessors (including its spiritual predecessor, Skyrim). It’s designed for customization over pure power, and it helps to plan ahead.

You abilities are broken up into seven categories, classified under the acronym S.P.E.C.I.A.L. (Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility, and Luck). Each of these categories has a base that can be upgraded 10 times (you start with one point in each category), but more importantly, each time you spend a point in that category, you unlock a new tier with a related, but completely separate perk.

For example, in strength, each initial upgrade allows you to carry 10 more pounds of gear and increases your melee attack. That’s helpful, but it also unlocks the ability to purchase the level 10 perk, which allows you to charge and hurt enemies while wearing power armor. You can skip right over all the other Strength perks; by the same token, if you want the level five perk, you just need six perk points – five for the base ability and one for the fifth level perk.

Most of the higher level perks also require multiple purchases, and you can see what each upgraded level offers by hitting the shoulder button. Some also require you to be at a specific level, so keep an eye on that.

Fallout 4 tipsWhen you first open up the perk tree, take a second to decide what kind of character you want to be. If, for example, you want to focus on sniping, you’ll want to focus on the perception tree and work from there. If you want to grow your settlements, you’ll need to increase your charisma so you can create trade routes.

You will have plenty of time to change your mind later, but have a game plan. It might make sense to max out all 10 base abilities, which in turn would then unlock all 10 levels of perks, but you’ll end up with a whole lot of stuff you won’t need – plus you’d need to reach a ridiculous level to do so and you’d miss out on a lot of important perks.

Regardless of your path, there are some perks you can just ignore until later – for instance, ignore the perks involving companions, and focus on yourself or the perks that affect the game.

If you received the physical copy of the game, you should also have a printed copy of the entire perk tree. Before you start take a moment to decide what direction you want to go, but you can’t go wrong with a balanced approach at first.

If you didn’t receive the physical copy, or you just want a digital version, you can find all the skills here.

  • The “Local Leader” perk under Charisma creates trade routes that are key to creating multiple settlements. It isn’t vital right away, but if you want to build settlements easily, keep an eye on it.
  • Intelligence is a good perk to start with, as it makes earning experience – and therefore earning more perks – easier.

Mods

Fallout 4 tips and tricks

After months of unofficial mods, Bethesda has officially begun to support user created content in Fallout 4. PC users can now design their own mods, post them on Bethesda.net, and allow users to sort through the library to try out the mods from others.

At the moment the mods are limited to the PC, but in June that will change, and console users will be able to download and use the officially sanctioned mods. Designers will still need to use the PC to create the mods, of course, but console users will then get to try then out. The creation kit, the same tool used to make the game, is available to download for free.

  • The mod library will grow and change over time. If you have a suggestion, you can post it on the forums.
  • The 2GB Xbox One library limit for mods is set by Microsoft rather than Bethesda.
  • Mods will arrive on PS4 on October 28, but they will be limited. All mods will need to be created using materials found within Fallout 4, which means you won’t be able to add custom creations like My Little Pony character mods.

Quests and story missions

Fallout 4 tips and tricks

Although there is a central storyline to the game, don’t focus on it exclusively. You’ll miss so much of the game.

When you meet a new NPC offering you a mission, there’s no reason not to accept it. You don’t need to do it then, but it’s good to have it available. You can scan through the missions in the menu and choose the one you want to do at any given time – it will always be active, but choosing it makes it appear on your HUD.

If you want, you can select every quest at once, which creates an icon for each one on the map. It can be overwhelming, but it also means that if you just start wandering, you are bound to come across some missions that earn you experience.

Fallout 4 is also a little different when it comes to morality. There is no specific “good” or “bad” path, just choices and consequences. That makes your decisions easier, but maybe more stressful as well, since there is no specific “right” answer.

Choose your answers however you want, and base your actions on your personal play style.

Settlements

Fallout 4 tips and tricks

In Fallout 4, you will have the option to create multiple settlements. You don’t need to, but you should. Creating settlements creates a safe haven where you can eventually set up things like trading post, and it also gives you easy experience points for building up the settlement up.

To create a settlement you first need to discover that location, and then solve whatever problem is plaguing the settlers. To identify a potential settlement, you can either talk to Preston Garvey (who you meet very early on in the game), or you can just wander around until you stumble across a new location (they have a distinctive icon on the map).

Once you’ve talked the settlement into joining you, you need to provide for it. That includes planting food, setting up water, creating beds, providing power, setting up defenses, and eventually recruiting new settlers to that settlement. To do all of this, you need to craft objects using materials that you find throughout the Commonwealth.

If you have no interest in settlements, you can ignore all the junk you come across – things like coffee mugs and office fans (in other words, about 90-percent of all the items you can take in Fallout 4). If you do want to do some world building though, you’ll need to take everything and store it in each settlement’s workbench.

In the early hours, your best bet is to grab everything you can. Once you are maxed out on the amount of junk you can take, hand it all to your companion and keep collecting. Once you are both nearing maximum weight, head to settlement and transfer it all to the workbench. Do this a few times and create a surplus to help you build.

After a while you’ll start to get a sense of what materials you need to build certain objects and items. You can also highlight what items you need for crafting while in the workbench; when you are out in the Commonwealth, if you come across junk that can be scrapped to create the component you are looking for, it will have a magnifying glass icon on it.

Once your settlements are up and running you’ll need to keep them happy, and a good portion of that is to defend them. The more food and water you create, the more raiders it will attract.

Fallout 4 tips and tricksWhen a settlement is under attack, you’ll receive a notification. You can ignore it and let the settlement handle it (although they may become unhappy and lose resources if they aren’t well defended), or you can fast travel there and help with the defense. Don’t worry too much about it if you are in the middle of something. If you have the time though, it’s quick and easy experience.

The eventual goal with settlements is to connect them. To do that, you’ll need to unlock the “Local Leader” perk under the Charisma category. Once you do that, you can assign a settler at each settlement to open a trade route with another settlement. Once you do, you can then access the craftable items from both settlements’ workbenches at the same time.

  • In the early hours, settlements are an easy way to earn experience points.
  • Unlock Local Leader as soon as you can spare the perk points.
  • Collect all the growing fruit and vegetables you can from the Commonwealth – people don’t mind you taking them, even if you aren’t aligned with that settlement. Once you have them, you can plant them in your own settlement.
  • Certain creations require a settler activate them. For example, you can plant food, but you will need to assign a settler to farm it. Just find someone not doing anything and look for the ”assign” command, hit it, then look for the things you want to assign them too and hit the prompt. It takes a few seconds, but you will receive a confirmation.
  • If you are running out of room in a settlement, you can always build straight up. Just build a ladder, and at the top of the ladder you can build a floor – even if nothing is supporting it. There is an invisible ceiling, but you can build to the edges of the settlement without sacrificing any ground space. (Thanks to Tim Johnson for the tip!)
  • Junk made of ceramic, copper, and gears are going to be used frequently.
  • If you use power armor, stockpile aluminum. You’ll need it to repair the armor.

Weapons and Power Armor

Fallout 4 tips and tricks

There are around 50 weapons in the game with 700 mods. You will find weapons all over the place, but there will come a point when you will want to focus perks on a certain type of weapon (revolver, automatic, semi-auto, melee, etc.) to increase its effectiveness – and it makes a huge difference. You can put this off for a while though.

Modding makes a big difference as well, but you will need to invest in the corresponding modding perks to unlock those particular upgrades. You may want to do this sooner rather than later, but you can put it off for a while and be fine.

Another weapon of sorts is power armor. You’ll receive your first set of power armor early in the game, but you’ll only be able to use it briefly at first. The power armor requires Fusion Cells to power it, and those aren’t all that common. Consider keeping the power armor in the garage back at Sanctuary Hills until you really need it and you have a surplus of Cells. Once you do though, it changes the way you play and makes you a dominant force in the Wasteland.

If you do want to use power armor, be sure to level up your “Armorer” and “Science” perks to unlock the top mods.

  • Power armor makes you immune to radiation.
  • The higher you set the difficulty, the more often you’ll come across Legendary enemies carrying rare weapons and items.
  • Power armor can be stolen if you leave it in an unsafe location – leave it in settlements and take out the Fusion Core to protect it.
  • Your weapons are more accurate when you crouch.
  • Power armor needs to be repaired – frequently. You’ll need to find a Power Armor Station to fix it up.
  • Invest in the armorer and science perks, and you can craft a jetpack mod for your power armor.
  • You can name your weapons at the crafting tables. It helps to keep your inventory sorted.
  • If your fusion core is almost depleted, manually equip a new one. You can then sell the nearly depleted cell for full price.
  • Steal fusion cells form the Brotherhood, but save before you try to make sure you get away with it.
  • Don’t walk into water in power armor if you can avoid it. You’ll be able to breath, but you will also sink to the bottom and need to navigate your way back to shore.
  • If you come across an enemy in power armor, shoot their fusion cell to make them abandon it.
  • You can fall from incredible distances while wearing power armor, but you could damage your armor.
  • You can find the best power armor in the game in the “35 Court” building, just west of the “Custom House Tower.” You’ll need to fight your way to the roof, and you need to be at least level 20. Prepare for a difficult fight to get it, but it is worth it, and once upgraded it is crazy powerful. (Courtesy of Kotaku.)
  • You can use HTML tags when naming weapons. You can use <i> to italicize, <u> to underline, and <b> to make it bold.

V.A.T.S.

Fallout 4 tips and tricks

The V.A.T.S. system has become a staple of the Fallout series, but it isn’t infallible. To begin with, in Fallout 4 entering into the V.A.T.S. targeting no longer stops time, but it does slow it. That gives you an advantage, but not an unbeatable one.

The V.A.T.S. system also needs to be leveled up through a combination of Perception, Intelligence, and Luck abilities. If you want to crush all enemies using the V.A.T.S., you’ll need to work for it. At its most entry level setting, you will miss frequently.

Use the V.A.T.S. as needed, but don’t rely on it too much at first. Play the game as a shooter, as it was intended, and save the V.A.T.S. for the right moments.

  • If you running through a new area, you may want to get into the habit of frequently pressing the V.A.T.S. button. It will warn you of nearby enemies by focusing the camera on them.
  • Some enemies carry explosives. Activate V.A.T.S. and shoot the hand holding them for a nice explosion.
  • Sometimes it’s easier to slow enemies than to kill them. Go for the odd leg shot if you are surrounded to slow down enemies.
  • When you crouch, you are more accurate when shooting. This is true in standard combat and in V.A.T.S.
  • Sniping accuracy is increased when you are not in V.A.T.S.

Easter eggs

Fallout 4 easter eggs

We have so many Fallout 4 Easter eggs that we split that section off and gave it its own post.

Check out our Fallout 4 Easter eggs post here.

General Fallout 4 tips and tricks

Fallout 4 tips and tricks

  • Save all the time. The quicksave feature is a must.
  • Harness your weapon to run faster. If you need to run from a fight, harness your weapon by holding the reload button. This will make you sprint faster.
  • Sleep often. It recovers your health and will save you AID items. If you sleep long enough to see the animation of a Vault Boy yawning, you receive a temporary “Well Rested” boost, which briefly increases your XP received by 10%.
  • Explore your former home. When you first return to your former home in Sanctuary Hills, you’ll find a Perception +1 Bobble Head and a book in your child’s room that grants you a perk point.
  • Use the cooking stations. If you use the cooking stations to make food, it will grant you additional, short term bonuses.
  • Don’t forget  your flashlight. Hold the Pip-Boy button down to turn on the flashlight.
  • Temporarily boost your intelligence. If you have equipment that adds an Intelligence boost, put it on before reporting a quest completion. You’ll earn bonus XP. You can take it off after that.
  • Temporarily boost your charisma. If you have an item that boosts Charisma, put it on before bartering to get better prices.
  • Stealth is a powerful tool. Use the stealth mode as often as you can in combat.
  • Head south, but be warned. The southern area of the map holds many secret locations, but it is also a radioactive wasteland.
  • Mini-games. You’ll collect a few tapes that are actually playable mini-games. You can play them on a terminal or on your Pip-Boy.
  • Get the Cryolater early. The Cryolater is located in a locked case located in the Vault 111 Overseer’s office. If you have Dogmeat, use the commands to send him into the case to grab it. It’s something of a glitch, but you’ll get the gun very early on – ammo, however, is a different story.
  • Monsignor Plaza bug. There is a rare, game-breaking bug in Fallout 4 that affects people when they accept the settlement quest involving Monsignor Plaza. There is no workaround, but if you know you are heading there, make sure to save. If you are in the minority that is affected by this, you’ll may have to skip the mission and wait for Bethesda to patch it.
  • Kremvh’s Tooth. Inside Dunwich Borers, you’ll find a pool of irradiated water. At the bottom you’ll rare find the Kremvh’s Tooth Dagger. It causes bleeding with each hit, and it’s also a nod to the “Dark Heart of Blackhall” quest from the Fallout 3 Point Lookout DLC. (Courtesy of Escapist.)
  • Scale the Green Monster. In Diamond City, you can scale the iconic green wall that frames the baseball field. If you look around, you can find a few platforms. Use them to jump to the top (you may want to quicksave with each new jump – it’s a pain to get there), and you’ll find an oddly organized area with some cool ammo.
  • The secret boss in Boston Common. If you head to Boston Common, you’ll find “Swan’s Pond.” In the pond you’ll find a secret boss – an extremely powerful and vicious boss. You’ll earn a rare powerfist, and a good deal of experience.
  • No more infinite caps glitch. There is a much publicized glitch that allowed you use clean out vendors by purchasing one type of bullet, then selling all but one back; when the glitch worked, you could take everything, including their caps. That has been fixed with the last patch.

Have any Fallout 4 tips and tricks or secrets for us? Let us know in the comments below!

Fallout 4 is a massive game packed with secrets. We’ll be playing this game for a long, long time, so we’ll be adding to this guide frequently.

If you have any Fallout 4 tips and tricks, secrets, or anything else, let us know in the comments below!

(Fallout 4 is available now on PC, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One)

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Founder and DBP boss. Ryan likes the Kansas Jayhawks, long walks on the beach, and high fiving unsuspecting people.
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