The Most Valuable Tips for Starting Fallout 4

fallout 4 sanctuary hills
Credit: Bethesda

fallout 4 sanctuary hills
Credit: Bethesda

Having enjoyed the live-action Fallout series on Prime Video, you'll find Fallout 4 closely aligned in timeline and spirit. As you transition from viewer to player, these vital tips we’ve compiled will be your compass in the game's vast Wasteland.

The Fallout live-action series, a collaborative effort by Jonathan Nolan, Graham Wagner, Geneva Robertson-Dworet, and Lisa Joy, has taken Prime Video by storm. It's currently the top-rated series in numerous countries, making it a cultural phenomenon worth participating in.

Fallout on Prime Video sparked joy among old and new Fallout players, sparking a surge in player count for all existing titles in the franchise. As Bethesda fans, we’d be more than happy to guide these new initiates through the Wasteland.

If you’re intrigued by the world of Fallout after watching the series and want to explore it in the game, our beginner tips are just for you. They're designed to help you navigate this expansive open-world game by Bethesda and make your learning experience smoother.

#1 Be Greedy and Collect Stuff

fallout 4 looting early game
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Credit: Bethesda

The first thing beginners notice when playing Fallout games is the insane amount of items they can collect from these worlds. You can occasionally find anything from desk fans, coffee mugs, and pencils to the odd television set.

Aside from the food, medical items, and ammunition, you will naturally collect them for obvious reasons; these seemingly miscellaneous objects hanging around everywhere provide valuable materials for crafting construction and weapon mods.

As a beginner, you’d do well to grab as many of these as possible to carry back to your settlements.

#2 Collect Monster Meat and Plants For Food

cooking station fallout 4
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Credit: Bethesda

Stimpacks and Rad-aways are the best restorative items in any player’s inventory, but they are scarce during the early chapters of Fallout 4. Instead, food you can scavenge from the Wasteland and the corpses of irradiated beasts provide alternatives.

Eating these foods directly, however, can add Rads even while restoring health. That’s why there are cooking stations found in every settlement. Make use of these to cook food from fruits, vegetables, and monsters - cooking miraculously removes the radiation, so you don’t get irradiated when eating these delicacies.

#3 Know Your Companions Intimately

nick valentine fallout 4
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Credit: Bethesda

Like Starfield, Fallout 4 lets you pick a companion to accompany you while exploring the Commonwealth’s wasteland. However, you can only take one of them at a time, so make sure to know each of their perks.

For instance, Nick Valentine can hack locked terminals for you. On the other hand, your faithful house robot from 2077, Mr Codsworth, is a straightforward companion but has excellent combat resilience and capabilities.

You can look up each companion’s perks online, but it also pays to have a conversation with them once in a while. Chats help you “romance” these characters and reach max affinity, which unlocks an XP Bonus you can access when sleeping.

#4 Invest In Your Perks

fallout 4 pickpocket perk
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Credit: Bethesda

Immediately after Character Creation, you’ll be asked to define your S.P.E.C.I.A.L perks. These unique stats affect your performance in specific tasks and form the basis for character builds.

For beginners, it’s best to build up these five S.P.E.C.I.A.L stats in the beginning:

  • Strength
    Aside from determining your character’s combat damage, Strength also influences how much burden you can carry before you are over-encumbered. Every point increases carrying capacity by 10.
  • Perception
    Perception lets you detect enemies from a distance and display them as red bars on your Head’s Up Display (HUD). A specific Perception level also unlocks dialogue options with certain characters.
  • Endurance
    Endurance determines your character’s resistance and vitality. Characters with high Endurance stats have higher starting HPs, faster healing, and stiffer resistance to maladies like poison and Radiation.
  • Charisma
    Charisma makes you more effective at haggling with vendors, enabling you to get better prices when trading. The stat also makes you more persuasive, enabling you to convince others to take specific actions for you and unlocking dialogue choices.
  • Agility
    Agility determines how often you can use the Vault-Tec Assisted Targeting System (V.A.T.S) in a single encounter. The higher the Agility stat, the fewer Action Points are consumed every time V.A.T.S. is used.

#5 - Don’t Get Too Obsessed With Your Power Armor

bethesda fallout 4 power armor
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Credit: Bethesda

The story in Fallout 4 gives you access to a pre-war Power Armor early on in Concord when you rescue your first companion, Preston Garvey. This Armor and the Vertibird minigun nearby are crucial to defeating your first Deathclaw and concluding the quest.

Despite being an obvious game-changer, Power Armor must be used sparingly. It requires Fusion Cores and shuts down when it runs out of juice, wherever you may be. It must also be consistently maintained to prevent a breakdown.

Anyone nearby can also steal them if you exit the Armor with its Fusion Core left attached, the same way Hank commandeered the Power Armor from Maximus in the finale.

#6 Be a Chatty Wastelander

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Credit: Bethesda

Roleplaying lets you select the actions that you make within the game, and it’s inevitable for some players to want to play the aloof soul. In Fallout 4, however, being a neighborly wastelander yields more benefits to your game than being someone who avoids interaction.

While some NPCs have generic and repetitive dialogue, many are crucial to activating certain quest lines that move the story forward. Others also offer side quests with unique loots, interesting lore, and lots of XP.

#7 Do Not Disturb the Water

fallout 4 saugus river
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Credit: Bethesda

The way that Bethesda’s Creation Engine renders waters in Fallout 4 makes you want to go and take a swim. However, that’s one way to immerse your character in Rads!

Your first few hours in the Commonwealth will be scarce of Stimpacks and Rad-aways, so please avoid swimming in the water until you’ve maxed out the Aquaboy/Aquagirl perk. This perk makes you immune to Rads when paddling in the rivers.

#8 Use V.A.T.S. During Combat to Cripple Your Enemies

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Credit: Bethesda

Although Fallout 4 uses various mechanics borrowed from first-person shooter games, it is an open-world RPG that lets you do more than just FPS combat. For instance, when you encounter a melee opponent, you can use V.A.T.S. to target his legs and prevent him from closing the distance.

V.A.T.S. also slows down time to about 50%, giving you enough time to create a sequence of shots that target multiple weak points that can incapacitate an opponent. This helps you save precious ammunition.

#9 Give Those Feral Ghouls a Wide Berth

fallout 4 feral ghouls
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Credit: Bethesda

Many new players mistake the Feral Ghouls for mindless zombies that drag their feet like Resident Evil's, but they’re closer in speed and ferocity to the zombies of Left 4 Dead.

They’ll murder you in seconds, so it’s best to avoid encountering them at the beginning of your journey until you’ve fattened your character up with Perks and the cruelest weapons that the Wasteland has to offer.

#10 Use the Radio to Expand the Map or Find Quests

fallout 4 pip-boy radio
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Credit: Bethesda

Fallout 4 treats us to many musical gems like The Carpenter’s “Close To You” and Danny Kaye’s “Civilization (Bongo, Bongo, Bongo)” when listening to radio stations using the Pip-Boy. Ironically, These songs keep you entertained even while you murder Raiders and Gunners.

Keeping the radio on also helps you detect and follow Distress Signals. These are usually part of a quest from which you can collect XP, loot, and some lore. More often than not, these signals also guide you in discovering new locations on the map.

Welcome to the wasteland! Remember these tips when you play Fallout 4 for the first time, and your early experience will be a breeze. Don’t forget to download the Fallout 4 next-gen update for all platforms when it rolls out on April 25.

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