General TipsEdit

  • Maxing Skill Points: In order to maximize the number of skill points that you get in a game, jack up your intelligence in the introduction to 9 in order to maximize the skill ganes. Otherwise, you can grab the Educated perk when you hit level 4, doing this you can get 20 points for levels 2 and 3, and then 23 points for level 3 and up.
  • Steal Things: If you are planning on being evil, steal everything that you can. The game does not flag stolen items, so find a way to hide behind the counter and steal the safes and registers.
  • Kill Those Who Have What You Want: Because there's not much criminal justice, you can kill those who have things that you want. Just watch out who you decide to kill. It will be safer to kill wanders and travelers, than main characters.
  • Finish The Megaton, Before You Really Do: Early in the game, you you can either save or destroy Megaton, and although destroying it is fun, you'll want to make sure to go there first. If you decide to save Megaton, make sure to finish the quest early so that you have a single place that's yours to store all of your things and a place to sleep in a bed.
  • Use Fast Travel: If you're in the middle of nowhere, find a nearby landmark that unlocks a nearby fast travel spot so that you can pop over, drop your loot off, and go back instantly.
  • Study The Perks: If you study your character's skills and try to have your character learned in various areas, you will be able to further yourself in the game. Make sure to pick a character type that interests you. One that will make good use of 4-5 skills, 2-3 stats, and various perks so that they all work together.

Here is a list of usefull perks:

  • Black Widow (female characters only) is much more useful than its male counterpart Lady Killer (male characters only) because most of the human enemies you'll face during the game will be male, making the 10% damage bonus really worth the perk point.
  • You may find Swift Learner and Here and Now to be of very little use, at least with the current level cap set at 20 (30 with Broken Steel add-on). Appropriate use of your bed to grant the Well Rested bonus and even occasional execution of side quests should grant you more than enough EXP to hit level 20 before the end of the main quest. Since there is a level cap (and thus a Perk cap), you may find other perks more useful.
  • Perks that add to your radiation resistance are generally a waste, since you can buy an infirmary for your house (whether it be in Megaton or Tenpenny Tower) that rids you of your radiation for free, as many times as you want. However, if you intend to discover the entrance to Vault 87, Rad Resistance may become much more valuable, or you could just use Rad-X till you have 85% radiation resistance. Also there are perks that are granted for completing some missions.
  • Don’t waste perks by choosing ones that only raise skill points. Unless you’re in a hurry to get a particular skill to a certain level right then and there you will eventually get them all the way to 100, especially if you have the Broken Steel add-on. Remember each skill has a Bobblehead that raise them 10 points and about 25 skill books that can raise them as much as 2 points each as well. Two perks to help you with this are Comprehension, which gives you 2 points whenever a skill book is read and Educated which gives you 3 extra skill points every time you level up. Both of these should be taken early on in the game to maximize their benefit. (Avoid reading any skill book until you have the Comprehension perk.)
  • Use V.A.T.S: Using V.A.T.s will get you through a lot of tough situations. While you're using it, you will only take 10% damage until it ends.
  • Scrounger: This will help yield more ammo when you're searching through containers in the Wasteland. You can even sell the ammo that you're not going to use for a nice profit.
  • Ammo is Weightless: Because the ammo doesn't weigh anything, you can carry as much as you want. Just make sure that you have enough weapons to use the ammo.
  • Lockpick Skills: In order to maximize your loot, make sure that you know how to pick a lock.
  • Travel: Try traveling old roads, rivers, and rows of destroyed power lines in order to find new places of interests.
  • Carry Various Weapons: Because you won't be able to use the same weapons in every situation, you'll want to make sure that you carry a variety of different weapons and guns. If you're worried about the ammo, you can conserve your ammo by using bats, sledge hammers, and other melee weapons.

Weapons, Armor, & ChemsEdit

  • Assault rifles (Assault Rifle, Chinese Assault Rifle, etc.) can be pretty inaccurate beyond 10 yards or so until your Small Guns skill improves, even in VATS. You can raise your Small Guns skill (which includes rifles) by taking the Gun Nut perk (level 2; 3 ranks) and increase rifle accuracy in VATS with the Commando (level 8; 1 rank) and Sniper (level 12; 1 rank) perks, though if you're planning on using Assault rifles and other conventional arms, you should be dumping skill points into Small Guns. An early 50 or 75 in Small Guns makes short work of just about everything. Bloody Mess (level 6; 1 rank) adds 5% to all damage, which doesn't hurt either.
  • Invest in Repair early on. The higher your repair score the more you can repair on the move. Doing this makes weapons more valuable, harder hitting, and removes them from inventory which reduces weight against your weight limit. For example: Kill two raiders with assault rifles. Repair the best one with the worst one. You then are carrying only one which will hit harder and or sell for more caps.
  • You will want to carry an assortment of weapons with you, as ammo of one type can be scarce early on. Ammo has the added benefit of having zero weight, so you can carry it all - all the time. There is really no need to sell it (unless you're strapped for cash) because you will eventually pick up a weapon that uses it. One load out could include a 10mm Pistol (for soft targets like animals or Ghouls or for exploding mines you cannot disarm), a shotgun (perfect for when you lead an attacker to follow you around a blind corner and VATS them in the FACE!), an assault rifle (for mid-range engagements), and a long-barreled rifle (for long range fighting). The Assault Rifle family seems to be the most flexible, with a good combination of accuracy, range, damage, and magazine capacity. The Scoped .44 Magnum is also an excellent long-range weapon if you aim by eye. And remember, crouching increases accuracy.
  • As you run across various pieces of armor and clothing that boost certain skills by as much as +5 or even +10, you might want to carry some of them with you as you adventure--they do come in handy. Obviously you have to balance the usefulness of the skill/stat boosts with the extra weight, but most clothing is light. An alternative to carrying the extra clothing around would be to leave it at your house and just grab it when--for example--you need to make repairs or you need to trade.
  • If you've invested some skill points in Repair and obtained a house, a good way to ensure that your weapons and armor are kept in top condition is to collect and store multiple copies of your items in your home. When you return home from an outing, patch up your gear and store the excess "spare parts" equipment you collected in a desk or a locker. As long as you scavenge diligently and go home to repair on a regular basis, you'll keep your equipment in good shape without having to lug around tons of non-loot stuff everywhere.
  • Though it might look cool, power armor isn’t always the best route to go. If all you're after is the highest damage resistance then use the power armor, however you will most likely be better off to consider alternatives like the Ranger Battle Armor which can be obtained during the Reilly’s Ranger quest. Standard Power Armor has a damage resistance of 40, at a weight of 45. It does raise your strength by +2, which makes the weight effectively 25 lbs, ONLY if your strength is 8 or lower however. It also lowers your agility -2, which significantly cuts into your action points available in VATS. Compare that to the Ranger Armor with a damage resistance of 39 (1 point less) and a weight of 27 (2 pounds more if your Strength is 8 or less, 18 pounds LESS at 10 strength) Combine that with its effects of +5 action points, +10 to small guns and +1 to luck and the Ranger Battle Armor quickly wins out over Power Armor. Also it is much cheaper to repair at merchants and if you have good Karma Talon combat armor is plentiful to repair it yourself.
  • If you’re low on stimpaks or food items, or if you would simply rather not use them unnecessarily, remember that sleeping in any bed will give you full health and heal any crippled limbs. There is almost always a bed available somewhere in the area you’re in. Keep in mind, those cardboard sheets laying on the ground in Super Mutant camps can be slept on. You won't get the well rested benefit, but it will hold you over until you can get back to your own house.
  • It can sometimes be quite difficult to keep certain weapons or armor in top shape, even if you have 100 Repair, because you can't find or buy enough of the same item to use for repair parts.
  • If you find yourself constantly running low on ammo, here are some ways of increasing your supply:
    • Protector Casdin of the Outcasts, who is found at Fort Independence (nearly due south of Vault 101), is friendly and with a little chat will allow you to turn in laser and plasma weapons, sensor modules, scrap metal, and most pieces of power armor for 5.56mm Rounds and Frag Grenades (along with Radaway and Stimpaks).
      • Be mindful of the value of the item you’re trading him though, giving him a piece of Enclave Power Armor valued at 500 caps in exchange for 240 rounds of ammo just makes no sense seeing as most projectile ammo sells for 1 cap each.
    • Once you've visited Canterbury Commons, you can invest in the weapons merchant Lucky Harith, who will increase his supply and offer much more ammo.
    • As a "good" karma player, you may have little need to visit Tenpenny Tower. It is worth the trip though because two of the NPCs there (Chief Gustavo and one of the store vendors) usually carry a plentiful supply of ammo.
    • You can also help your ammo problem by taking perks that improve accuracy in VATS and using VATS more. The more accurate you are, the less ammo you waste. Also keep in mind that headshots do double-damage, (or quadruple-damage on a critical strike).
    • You can also take a shopping tour, visiting Moira in Megaton, Flak or Shrapnel in Rivet City, Chief Gustavo and Le Chic Boutique in Tenpenny Tower, Quartermaster Durga in the Citadel, and Lucky Harith 's caravan. You can easily buy thousands of rounds per trip this way.
    • If you own The Pitt and have finished the quests, you have access to an ammo press that changes any ammo type into another. For instance, lets say you have about 300 10mm Rounds, but you badly need 5.56mm rounds, just put the 10mm rounds in and go to the nearby terminal and select 5.56mm. All of the ammo put in will come out as what you selected. Remember that you can only change conventional ammo in another type, scrap metal can also be converted into ammo as well.
  • For lower level players different kinds of meat are an ideal solution to restore health. The best meat kinds are Mole Rat Wonder Meat and Yao Guai Meat. The latter type can be purchased from hunters.
  • Assigning stimpaks to a hotkey allows healing while reloading, when accessing the Pip-Boy is not allowed and enemies may still damage the player.
  • When using a gun that has bullet spread, such as the hunting rifle, you may want your first shot to always hit where you aim it (especially if you sneak). This trick can be done with any weapon (not the scoped ones). When aiming in, if you look at the gun, you may notice that it is swaying back and forth, making three stops along the way. When the gun sways left, the shot will go left of the reticle, when it sways right, it will go right of the reticle. However, there is a point where is stops for a split second in the middle, shooting at that time will make that shot fired hit where the reticle is. NOTE: When using automatic weapons, holding down the button will cause the shots to go back to the regular spread.