The original Fallout series was first released in the late 90s. They were only available to computer players. These post-apocalyptic role-playing games explained how the Vault Dweller and his descendant helped the West Coast rebuild centuries after the Great War.
Bethesda would later obtain the Fallout IP from InterPlay years later. They reworked the graphics to make the series more accessible to all players. Gamers no longer had to rely on a keyboard and mouse. To bring the series to gamers worldwide, Bethesda released Fallout 3 on both PC and consoles. Soon, everyone knew about the Fallout franchise.
With the rise of digital distribution platforms, such as Steam, more gamers had access to the older library of games. With the cost of PCs, many gamers didn't have access to these games when they were initially released. PC players had the opportunity to get the first two Fallout games free by pre-ordering Fallout 76, but now Bethesda is giving the Classic Collection to anyone who pre-ordered or played the game anytime in 2018.
Fallout 1 and 2 are a completely different playstyle than the newest games. Fallout 3 and 4 reduced role-playing for more action, but 1 and 2 rely on players to create a unique character. Many gamers have no idea how to start playing the isometric classics.
Our list contains a few tricks and tips on how to get started in the classic Fallout games. Though there's no single, perfect way to play, you'll have the upper hand in rebuilding the West Coast. Before you begin, there are some spoilers in the list.
25 Master The Controls
The first two Fallout games aren't the kind of games one plays with a controller. To experience the game as the developer intended, you'll need to master the controls. If you want to select various objects in the world, you'll need to use your mouse.
The number of keyboard controls in the classic games is confusing for a new player.
Review the control settings and save them for future use. There are keyboard shortcuts for almost every action in the game, including using Lockpicks, adjusting screen brightness, and most importantly: quick-saving.
24 Almost Unlimited Storage
There's a variety of items and weapons to pick up in the classic games. An item you don't need now may become handy later. Luckily, there are plenty of storage options.
Once you are accepted into the Brotherhood of Steel, you'll have your own personal locker. If you choose to avoid them, you can leave the items on a random NPC. Take care not to leave loot on enemies you've defeated. If their remains have begun to disappear, all the loot that remains on them will also be lost for good.
23 Repair On-The-Go
Tag Skills offer your character additional bonuses. They are the building blocks to developing your character but were sadly removed from Fallout 4 and 76. Fallout 1 and 2 have your character fixing various broken items.
Choosing the Repair skill will give you 20% plus a bonus, depending on your level of Intelligence. Repair will help you repair broken terminals and water pumps, which comes in handy towards the end of Fallout 1. By choosing this skill in Fallout 2, you'll also receive a repair tool which can grant an additional 20% bonus.
22 Give Them A Warning First
The classic Fallout games had a bad reputation for letting characters eliminate the youngest characters. If you chose to harm them, you'll be marked by other NPCs for your sinister deeds.
There are alternate ways to stop the lawbreaking kids in Fallout 2.
After giving them a few warnings, they will eventually stop trying to pickpocket your character. They will quickly learn not to mess with the Chosen One. Take your "warnings" too far, and the situation can quickly get out of hand.
21 Keep On Moving
While in combat, your character will use AP to perform any action, even opening your inventory. Enemies won't stop and wait for you to finish. They'll keep creeping up towards you to attack. If you need more time, move away from them. Most enemies won't strike until they're in the perfect range to land their attack.
Not all attacks will hit their targets, so it'll give you a bit of extra time to plan your moves without wasting ammo or AP. Even if you do decide to strike, use your unused AP to move further away from your enemies.
20 Make Gameplay Easier (Or Harder)
For those new to the classic games, they can be difficult to enjoy. The games can become difficult quickly. Don't be afraid to set the difficulty lower, then raise it again when you're better at the game. Easy mode will grant you a 20% bonus to your secondary skills outside of combat, while Hard mode will decrease it by -10%. Lowering it to Wimpy will give you even more of an advantage by decreasing enemies' perception and cutting their attack damage by half.
19 Plan Every Battle
Avoiding every battle in the classic games is impossible. Even if you talk your way out of a fight with an NPC, there are enemies on the road. There's still a change a random encounter will force you into a fight.
If you're in a situation where a battle is about the begin, quickly press the Attack button.
You'll highlight the location of all of your enemies to plan your attacks. Press the Attack button when the battle begins to get in the first attack. By acting quickly, you'll have an advantage over the enemy.
18 Invest In Agility
Fallout 2 amps up the difficulty of the previous game. While some gamers choose to lower the difficulty, others try to make it through without the help. To ensure you'll have plenty of points to complete actions in battle, invest in Agility. This skill will grant you more Action Points in battle.
Planning your movies and keeping an eye on your Agility Points will help you in any fight. You don't want to lose a battle because you ran out of AP too quickly.
17 Conserve Your Valuables
Players have the freedom to build their characters however they'd like. They may decide to role-play as a character with specific skills. In the classic games, ammo isn't as easy to obtain. Fallout 3 and 4 make it too easy to loot ammo from fallen enemies.
While you learn how to play the classic games, try an unarmed or melee skill build instead of firearms. There will be less of a need to acquire ammo if you only need your bare hands.
16 Keep Track Of Everything
The classic Fallout games rely on the player to track their actions. The game doesn't do many things in your favor automatically.
If an NPC needs your help, there's no detailed quest log. You'll have to work out all of the details on your own before setting out.
To save yourself some trouble, try to complete all of the quests in one location before moving on.
The fewer quests you have to complete, the less time you'll spend running around trying to remember what you're supposed to do next.
15 Use Your Companions To Help
As with most Fallout games, enemies drop loot. You may even find loot within the world, or from other characters. There's plenty of items to carry but even less room to carry it. If your character needs to take everything, you'll quickly run out of inventory space.
If your character plans on recruiting one or more Companions, there's no need to accept the Strong Back perk. All of your precious loot can be distributed with the Companions. They won't complain that you're using them as walking storage.
14 Keep Away From Danger
In Fallout 3 and 4, if your character is close to defeat, you can run far away from your enemies. They'll eventually turn around and head back to their assigned location. It's possible to run away from enemies in the classic games as well.
In battle, all moves cost AP or Action Points. Use your leftover AP to run away from enemies. It'll give you enough time to think about your actions. Once you're ready to launch your attack, move closer and attack. Combat will end as soon as all hostile enemies are out of range.
13 Don’t Overestimate Your Companions
Groups of enemies can attack the Vault Dweller or Chosen One. The odds often seem against your favor. Thankfully, you can bring Companions with you into battle. The player can give almost any weapon to their Companions.
Companions can use full-auto weapons, but they can't control where they're aiming.
Don't give a companion a full-auto firearm, such as a mini-gun. They will begin to fire at everything in sight, including the protagonist. The battle may be lost due to their incompetence with a weapon.
12 Use Enemies To Get Stronger
Deathclaws have been part of the Fallout series from the first game. Though their name implies their danger, they aren't invincible. The creatures take some skills to defeat, but they're worth the effort. Find a cave filled with the enemies and get to work.
Defeat all of the Deathclaws you can, then leave the cave. After healing your character and repairing your weapons, enter the cave and start all over again. You can farm bonus XP for as long as you want. Just remember not to destroy the Deathclaw eggs. That's how the creatures respawn.
11 Get Bonus Items Early
In the first three games, players are allowed to choose three tag skills. Tag skills will increase at double the rate of untagged skills in the classic games. Picking the Tag! perk will let you pick out a fourth tag skill. There's an immediate bonus depending on which tag skill you choose. Small Guns specialists get an extra helping of ammo, while Unarmed brawlers get a pair of Brass Knuckles. These bonus items are added onto the initial starting equipment you receive at the beginning of the game.
10 They Already Have Control
The Energy Weapons skill will give you a bonus with energy weapons. You can further increase it by talking to Larry for an additional 5% bonus. Don't feel tempted to increase Energy Weapons at the beginning of the game.
The Brotherhood of Steel has hoarded most of the laser weapons, making them harder to obtain.
If you do find an energy weapon at the start of your journey, getting ammo for it is even harder. It's better to wait to improve your talent with this category of weapons until you're further into the game.
9 Open Up New Paths
At the beginning of every Fallout game, except for Fallout 4 and 76, players must choose three Tag Skills. These tag skills are what your character's build is dependent upon. If your character wants to use firearms, you'll select various Gun-related skills.
Those who are gifted with Charisma will choose more speech-related skills instead. Depending on which tag skills you pick, they will open up new paths for your character. When creating a new character, you'll want to experiment with the skills to open new opportunities in the game.
8 A Game Of Luck
Luck will increase your character critical hits in battle. You'll need that extra help if you're fighting against a tough enemy. Luck also gives you an upper hand in Gambling, which is a skill in all of the classic games. If you have at least Luck 6, you'll have a chance to encounter an alien in a random event.
The Vault Dweller will find the Alien Blaster, which deals between 30-90 damage or more. Paired with Action Boy (or Girl), Bonus Rate of Fire, and Sniper, you have the chance to strike a target for 300-800 damage.
7 Talk Things Out
Charisma allows your character to barter for lower prices in shops and open up new dialogue options with NPCs. In Fallout 2, the Charisma SPECIAL trait has another benefit. The Chosen One can recruit more Companions depending on how many points they have in Charisma. If their Charisma is at five, the Chosen One can recruit two Companions.
Companions are almost vital to give your character the upper-hand in battle.
You'll need all the help you can get, no matter what your Charisma level is. Other recruitable Companions will join, even with a low Charisma level.
6 Reduce Travel Time
The Fallout game maps are quite large. It can become a chore to travel back and forth between each location. Luckily for players, there's a unique perk that only appears in the classic Fallout games. The Pathfinder perk reduces your travel time by 25% on the world map.
The perk also reduces the Highwayman vehicle's battery drain by 24%. To acquire the perk, you'll have to reach Level 6, Endurance level 6, and reach a minimum of 40% of the Outdoorsman skill.
5 A Vehicle With Many Perks
Fallout 2 gives your character something no other Fallout has: the Highwayman. The Highwayman is a working vehicle that will make the Chosen One's life easier while on the road. Driving the car will reduce the chance of random encounters. Another advantage is how much the vehicle can carry. It can hold your entire party, even if there are more companions than seats in the car. The Highwayman's trunk can also be used as storage for around 30 extra inventory slots.
4 Give Yourself An Extra Boost
Those new to the classic Fallout games will recognize one feature: chems have a useful side effect. There aren't enough points to max out every ability. You may decide your character doesn't need Charisma as much as other skills. There are ways to get a temporary boost for skills.
Using Mentats will give your character a temporary boost to pass a Speech test.
If your character is out of Mentats and can't afford more, wearing unique items like Mirrored Shades will boost your Charisma by one point.
3 Don’t Engage In Every Battle
As you're playing the game, you'll begin developing the best attack methods for your character. Although making your character invincible is fun for some, there are other, more peaceful ways to solve an encounter. According to the in-game description, Charisma is "A combination of appearance and charm. A high Charisma is important for characters that want to influence people with words."
Increasing Charisma has many benefits. One of the most helpful benefits is that it opens more dialogue choices. Why fight when you can talk your way out of battle?
2 Play Different Roles
The classic Fallout games give the player plenty of choices throughout the games. They can either become a savior to the people outside the vaults or make their lives worse. Since the games emphasize the importance of role-playing, there is no single way to complete the game.
Don't worry about making the best choices as you're playing. The classic Fallout games have massive replay value, which means you can replay the game several times to experience different dialogue options and endings.
1 Get Used To Saving Often
If you're used to Bethesda's modern Fallout titles, you've come to rely on the autosave feature. The classic games don't autosave. If you want to save your game, you'll have to do so manually within the menu or with a keyboard shortcut.
Saving your game often will "save" you some frustration in the future.
Your character won't win every battle or say all the right things. There are few things worse than having to replay the last six hours of your game because you forgot to save.