With the recent release of Fallout 76, it seems there’s no better time to revisit the popular wasteland series and point out a few things that some players might not have realized in its previous iteration, Fallout 4.
2015’s Fallout 4 was an unsurprising success given its notoriety as a mainline Bethesda game, with numerous fans and a five-year gap since its last series entry. Due to fake announcements and mysteriously debunked countdowns, which may or may not have been to spur hype on the apocalyptic release, fans were drooling over the prospect of venturing through the American wasteland once again. Thus, when this game was announced, the internet caved in on itself as a multitude of hungry fans collectively began whistling the memorable melodies of The Ink Spots while theory devising as to the game’s position within the Fallout timeline and whether the Alien Blaster would make an appearance in this particular sequel.
As a vast, open-world, derelict, fantasy game, there were plenty of details that were lost on players when heading out into the Capital Wasteland for the first time. Settlement building was a nifty addition, yet it certainly left players scratching their heads over what to do with their lingering settlers and where to place that specific supply line. Being an immersion-heavy title there were also many interactions that the player could make to better their experience with the game, whether that be to modify your weapons and/or dismantle said weapon modifications in order to use them on another.
There’s a myriad of hidden details and tools surrounding the gargantuan sequel, and thus, as a wannabe wasteland wanderer and a fan of the series, I’ve compiled below a list of 25 tricks from Fallout 4 that players may have no idea about.
25 Let There Be Light
This may seem obvious, but you’d be surprised at how many players tend to ignore the optional customisations you can make to your Pip-Boy. If you hold down the Pip-Boy activation button (Tab for PC, Circle for PS4 and X for Xbox One) then your personal flashlight should boot up. If you don’t like the colour of said light (it’s set to radiation green) then go to your settings in the pause menu and use the final three options to alter the colour of your Pip-Boy's light.
24 The Strength Of A Stag
To be over-encumbered can be the bane of your existence in the world of Fallout, especially when you have a bunch of unique items that, if lost, you may never find again. Thus, when your carry limit exceeds, it can be a painstakingly long task to find the nearest storage location, go back to your settlement, lose your items, and venture back to the place where you left your favorite weapons or armor. Not to worry, young wastelander, for if you cook a piece of Radstag meat and eat it, you’ll gain an extra 25 carrying weight for a short while.
23 Sleep Often
This may sound strange as video game tip, but while exploring the wasteland, don’t forget to sleep every once in a while. It’ll give you full health and the bonus of the Well Rested perk which permits a 10% experience points boost for everything that, well, grants experience points.
Make it personal by sharing a bed with one of your companions and you’ll receive the Lover’s Embrace perk, which does the same but bumps it up by an extra 5%.
22 Out Of Glue?
Adhesive is an essential part of every and all crafting you’ll take part in during your time in the Capital Wasteland, especially if you want to maintain your settlement. And it seems that adhesive is a limited substance due to its necessity in almost every design.
However, this is certainly not the case.
If the player truly needed some adhesive, all they’d have to do is combine three Corn, three Mutfruit, one Purified Water, and three Tatos at a cooking station and voila, you’ve made Vegetable Starch, which is equitable to five adhesives.
21 Never Forget A Name
Named items are usually some sort of unique object that cannot be found anywhere else and probably have something to do with a certain side quest somewhere. That’s why, when you come across one, don’t leave it, store it so that when you finally come across said side quest, you already have the means to progress or complete it.
It may sound lazy, but the wasteland is vast and dangerous, making it easy to forget specific locations and items.
Most of the time, the named item will be weightless anyway, so what’s to lose?
20 Protect Yourself From Radiation
This may come across as obvious but a constant source of radiation prevention can really sort you out in a spot of bother, particularly when venturing out into the Glowing Sea – an area of the Capital Wasteland seaming with high-level radiation. So, keep a Hazmat Suit on you at all times.
It’s light, funky, and most importantly, provides you with 1000 radiation resistance.
Power Armour does the same thing if you’re more of a mech fan than a skin-tight scientist type.
19 Don’t Sink Your Power Armor
A word of caution for all those that travel using their Power Armor, do not venture into depths too deep, unless you have the jetpack upgrade, of course. There are many bodies of water in Fallout 4, a lot of which hold secrets and creatures that’ll spur your curiosity and make you yearn to find out more about them. But, being a large metal casing, it’s unsurprising that Power Armour doesn't float, and being the precarious wasteland it is, there are a fair few spots where it will be impossible to fish your set to safety. You’ve been warned.
18 Take The Castle
The Minutemen are a new faction introduced to the wasteland in Fallout 4, inspired by the historical minutemen of the American Revolution, and a pain in my neck. Preston Garvey, the first Minuteman you interact with, is an annoying do-gooder whose morality never fails to irritate and whose missions never run out. So, get all you need from them as quick as you can. There’s a fort, named The Castle, which, at some point in the Minutemen storyline, will be up for the taking. Do this, as you will receive access to a Fatman and a bunch of ammo too.
17 Supply Lines: A Confusing Necessity
Settlements were a new addition in Fallout 4, implementing the player’s own initiative and ability to craft and lay out an area of living for the people of the Capital Wasteland. What you might have realized, however, is that construction of these settlements can be expensive and can run dry your piles of junk in no time.
Keep your settlements connected.
There are a large number of potential settlements in Fallout 4 and your best bet at keeping them all stocked is by implementing supply lines throughout the land. That way settlements can maintain levels of junk by sharing each others’.
16 The Not Entirely Alone Wanderer
Although it’s tradition to become the Lone Wanderer from every game advertisement for any Fallout game ever, it’s sometimes best to ensure your safety by having someone or something at your back.
In Fallout 4, the Lone Wanderer perk allows the player to take 15% less damage and 50 extra carry weight as consequence for having no companion.
However, the perk still works when partnered up with the delectable Dogmeat. So, keep him around, as a work-around perk is truly a man’s best friend in the world of Fallout 4.
15 Strip Your Mods
Weapon modifications have been a staple of the Fallout series for some time now, but have rarely been at the forefront of weapon customization as they are in Fallout 4. Whether it be to increase your weapon stats, alter the effect of the ammo, or just to change the way it looks, modifications can mean everything in your individual journey throughout the Wasteland.
Make sure then to strip your items of modifications before sending them off to rust as you can store them, use them on other weapons and/or sell them for caps.
14 Alien Blaster Ammo
The Alien Blaster is a recurrent weapon in the Fallout series, appearing in every mainline title and being a fan favorite weapon with the power to turn your enemies to ash. However, it usually has a limited source of ammo.
Yes, being a weapon from another planet, there are only so many Alien Blaster rounds to be found amidst the Wasteland.
But, if your Science level is high enough (50+), then at your weapons workbench you can convert your blaster to fire Fusion Cells. Don’t be too drastic, however, as you’ll never be able to convert it back.
13 X-01 Suits Are The Best
There are various different types of Power Armor you can find amongst the ruins of the Capital Wasteland, but not one of them trumps the power and protection you receive with an X-01 power suit.
Created shortly after the bombs fell, the X-01 armor boasts a damage resistance of 1220 and a high price value of the same number of caps.
Find one and keep it maintained as it has a myriad of upgrades you can add to it, one of which being the aforementioned, and extremely useful, jetpack.
12 Store Your Junk
I’ve already mentioned the positives of implementing trade routes connecting your settlements, but none of that matters unless you have the junk to spare. Therefore, throughout your journey, I implore you to collect and store as much junk as you can so that construction and modification is never a nuisance. It’s as easy as wondering over to your settlement workbench and emptying your person of all that weighty junk with the tap of a button. No point carrying around that entire Giddyup Buttercup if it’s just gonna cause you to be encumbered.
11 Whatcha Cooking?
It may be the end of the world, but that doesn’t mean we have to live like savages in this otherwise savage post-apocalypse. Get cooking, as cooked food has better effects than the radioactive waste players can find around the Capital Wasteland.
Not to mention it grants players experience points, helps them learn new recipes, heals them, and maintains their level of culture to boot.
So, purify your water, bake a Mirelurk Cake, or fry up a Deathclaw Egg Omelette if you're feeling ferocious enough.
10 Another Use Of Your Junk
The Capital Wasteland is littered with pre-war, post-war, apocalyptic rubbish that the player can use for modification, construction, and decoration in their individual save data. However, there is but one more use for your junk, and it’s a rather enticing use too. If the player locates the Junk Jet weapon from the ArcJet Systems control room, then they can fire any and all junk items as projectiles from henceforth using the weapon. Keep in mind, however, that at least 10% of the items will be lost in the process, so don’t go firing your adhesive.
9 The Skin You Live In
Not happy with the way you look? Wish you could go back to the start of the game and add a few battle scars without having to lose your save data? Then have no fear, the surgeon is here. If the player truly decides that their look no longer satiates their identity as a wasteland wanderer, all they have to do is travel to the Mega Surgery Centre in Diamond City in order to pay 100 caps to change the way they look. Either that or you construct a surgery center at one of your settlements.
8 Look Out, A Mine
The VATS system in Fallout is a staple tool of the series ever since Fallout 3 in 2008. It either stops or slows down time giving the player the option to choose which body part to target while displaying which is at its weakest.
Yet, the player can also use this targeting system to expose less obvious threats, like mines for example.
VATS will highlight these hidden explosives and give the player the option to shoot them, and thus, destroy the threat altogether.
7 The Clues Are In The Brackets
Hacking computers in Fallout games has always been a little weird. I remember traversing throughout the whole of Fallout 3 and New Vegas without understanding a thing about the hacking system, instead, just tapping buttons until I was granted access.
However, there is a way to figure out the hacks, and it’s all in the brackets.
If the player, while hacking a computer, finds a pair of brackets amidst the jumble of symbols and clicks on it, then either their number of tries will be reset or various dud passwords will be removed - making hacking easier and more tactical.
6 It’s In The Name
The number of weapons that can be found or built in Fallout 4 is ridiculous, and keeping them well-organised is no easy feat.
That’s why it’s always best to name your weapons.
Whether it’s a personal touch or a numbered system to keep your weapons in order, naming your weapons is a sure-fire way to keep your organisation in check and your stress level low. Give them a symbol instead of a letter at the beginning of the name and it should be listed at the beginning of your list, making it easier for you to use your favourite weapons.
5 A Man’s Best Friend
Dogmeat is a wonderful addition to the world of Fallout 4. He’s loyal, vicious, cute, and by far the least annoying companion in the game.
Yet, what truly sets him apart from the rest, is his ability to snuff out goods, most notably, the Cryolator from very early on in the game.
Yes, if you and your canine companion travel back to the vault in which you start your apocalyptic journey, then you can send Dogmeat to pick up that Cryolator locked away behind glass. Just make sure to pick up the surrounding items first, or you’ll be there a while.
4 Settle Settlers In Your Settlements
There are numerous NPCs that will join your settlements throughout the course of the game, it just happens, but what you do with said NPCs is up to you. Have them guard, have them sell, have them farm much-needed vegetation from the ground, the choice is yours. But definitely make sure to send some of them as supply lines, otherwise, your resources will dwindle at the seams. This way you're ensuring the future of your settlement while ridding yourself of the annoyance of a jobless settler, cramping your camp and wasting resources in the process.
3 Secure Your Fusion Cores
Power Armor is the best. It’s big, loud, explosive and ultimately, the best protection you can get against the dangers of the Capital Wasteland. But it ain’t just you who can wear them.
Bandits, companions, and other humanoid NPCs can clamber right into your epic X-01 suit and use it against you.
So, after you’re done using your Power Armor, exit the beast, and take out the Fusion Core situated in the back of the suit. That way, no one can access it... Unless they have a Fusion Core of their own, that is.
2 The 30 Days Of Fight
This is something to bear in mind wherever and whatever your situation is within the Capital Wasteland. Everything resets in 30 in-game days. So, if there’s a particular item you need lots of, or an enemy that drops insane amounts of experience points, just sit, wait 30 in-game days and voila, all items and enemies are reset. Bear in mind, however, that waiting around can be a loathsome activity, and thus, be prepared to watch the 24-hour countdown 30 times. Maybe make a coffee or something.
1 Words Are Stronger Than Actions, Or At Least, They Can Be
My final and most important trick for players of Fallout 4 is to always try and talk it out rather than shoot it out. Dialogue options have always been a significant factor in any Fallout game.
Whether it’s to raise settlement morale, to convince an enemy of their wrong-doing, or to successfully romance a companion faster, speech is key to fulfilling wasteland experience as it is in day-to-day life. So, bump up your charisma through leveling and specific attire. That way you can talk your way into gaining access to the Institution rather than going in guns blazing.