Fallout 4 Beginner’s Guide

If you’re new to Fallout, there’s probably a million questions in your mind right now. On the other hand, if you have already played any installment of the Fallout series before, you’re probably in the process of finding out good strategies for all available features in the fourth installment. This Fallout 4 Beginner Guide will give you a head start without spoiling the game. From how you should properly start your character, how to craft a kick-ass weapon, how to build, manage, and flourish your own settlement, where to find secret quests, improve fighting capabilities, find the right companion and so much more.

Whether you’re a beginner or not, you would do well to peruse this guide. This is your first step into making your character the Ultimate Vault Survivor in the post-apocalyptic world. We hope to make your transition to life on the Wastelands a much smoother one. Put on your Power Armor and let’s begin.

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Gameplay Guide

1. Starting Smart

As you create your character, you select your character’s SPECIAL statistics. The SPECIAL acronym represents Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Agility and Luck. These are the basics stats that will make up your character and shape the way you play the game. In Fallout 4, the Perks system has been redesigned to play heavily off of the SPECIAL stats you select, so be sure to take a few minutes to plan out your initial SPECIAL selection so that it allows for you to pick the perks you would like to play with. Here, we will be focusing on the Intelligence stat as it will help streamline your leveling progress.

The immediate benefit of the Intelligence stat in Fallout 4 is that it modifies the amount of experience points earned, which is a major advantage for any character’s progression, and it could speed up your leveling process exponentially. This is a SPECIAL stat that will net immediate gains for your character, so feel free to boost it liberally at character creation; after all, you will have the opportunity to add to some of the other SPECIAL stats you may have forgone in favor of Intelligence later through collectable Vault Boy Bobbleheads and other gameplay opportunities.

2. Leveling Up

It’s important to know your limits as you level up. There will be certain levels where you might power spike, and others where you’re a bit weak and have to watch your step against enemies. Early on in the game is your most critical point. While Fallout 4 does give you a generous boost to stats right from the start with 28 SPECIAL points, you are still susceptible to multiple enemies that may try to overtake you.

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3. Follow the Quests

As you play through your Fallout 4 run, take the time out to focus on the quests provided. The main storyline and side quests will reward you with the lion’s share of available experience. This may seem self-explanatory, but Bethesda’s games are known for their ability to drag the player into the depths of their immersive world, and before the player knows it, they have spent the better part of eight hours exploring caves or sewer systems without the motivation of a quest-line. While there is experience to be gained in this gameplay, it pales in comparison to the leveling potential of efficient questing. You will always have time to explore every nook and cranny of post-apocalyptic Boston later on in the game, so focus on a good start for your play-through, and get a leg up on your character progression before you fall into the trap of endless exploration.

4. Combat Skills to Match Your Style

There are hundreds of build paths you can go with, and finding the right one is essential to developing a powerful character. It’s often best to choose a single style of weapon and then pick up skills that benefit that individual weapon, rather than branching out into general stats. Fallout 4 has plenty of perks that are designed for certain weapons, and once you pick them up you can branch into general stat buffs such as extra melee damage. You should also focus your perk build on being able to acquire the best enhancements for your weapons, as these can often provide better boosts than stats will.

5. Becoming a Pro at VATS

Fallout 4 has done some revamping on the VATS system, and so there’s a bunch you need to know. For starters, you can no longer use VATS as a way of saving yourself in a sticky situation. Before, VATS would completely stop the fight, but now it only briefly slows down combat. When using VATS, you will typically want to aim at the body part with the highest number. This will allow you to deliver the best attack against your enemy, but you only have a brief moment to take your shot so be quick. If you really like VATS and want to invest into it, it’s best to max out perception to increase your accuracy.

6. Sniping 101

Sniper rifles are meant to be powerful long range weapons in Fallout 4. With that in mind, they also have some drawbacks. Snipers are loud, which is why it’s recommended that you get a suppressor mod for your sniper as soon as possible so that you don’t give away your position to other enemies. If you take out enemies without being seen you will do increased critical hit damage, so a sneaky shot to the head is usually enough to take out an enemy.

7. Positioning

No matter the combat game your character positioning is essential, but it’s often one of the most sloppy mechanics for players. Something as simple as moving a couple inches to the right can prevent a massive amount of damage to your character, allowing you to escape death and eliminate your enemy. The first thing you should be looking for is objects to hide behind that will block enemy fire. This is useful for both one on one skirmishes as well as multiple enemy fights. In a single target fight you can safely reload behind barriers such as rocks and walls, and then peak around the corner to deal your damage. It’s also useful for keeping enemy ranged units out of sight while you take out melee fighters first. You can also use your positioning to your advantage by keeping out of reach of melee fighters by standing on a slope or elevated edge while you take out the ranged enemies when cover isn’t available. These little things can make a huge difference.

8. Experiment With Builds

Building your character is important, and luckily you get a reset if you want to experiment a little. You can reset your points at any time to allow you to pick up different perks and other stats. With this in mind, feel free to try out new things and find what you’re best with. It’s a sandbox game that’s meant to allow you to play the way you want, so don’t feel that you have to pick a single style just because it seems overpowered.

9. Modify Your Weapons

Weapon modifications are going to be a major component in Fallout 4 and shouldn’t be ignored. There are going to be over 700 different modifications that you can make to your weapons to either improve their damage or make them more versatile. Some of these include items such as scopes, silencers, barrels, special sights, suppressors, large magazines, and much more. You should use mods that fit your combat style.

For example, placing a long barrel on a weapon will be a good idea if you’re a long range gunman looking to take out targets from afar and want some increased accuracy, while it may not be optimal for short range gun fights. Mods can be crafted from raw materials, and with the right perks you’ll gain access to advanced mods with enhanced capabilities.

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S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stands for the 7 attributes in the character creation: Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility, and Luck. How you decide to put points in each attribute will also decide how your character will become; whether they will have super strength, or will have more luck in finding items is entirely up to you. By doing so, you provide stat boots to your character and eventually, perks will be unlocked when necessary level of a certain stat is reached. A perk is a special ability that will enhance your character’s stat. We will try to individually explain the stat below, so that you can efficiently distribute the skill points.


Melee fighters would do well to put in as much points as they can to Strength. In addition to increasing the damage made by physical combat, it also allows for the character to carry as many items as they can. Therefore, if you do not feel the need for strength for melee combat, you can still find it useful if you plan to carry a lot of stuff around. On the other hand, those who optimize Strength intended for melee combat will be glad to know that the perks they can pick up in the future have a lot to do with improving their melee skills.


If you plan to use a lot of VATS-based gameplay, then invest as much as you can in Perception. This increases the reliability of the VATS system by enhancing the weapon accuracy of the system. Not only that, if you plan to make your build a stealthy one that will do a lot of sneaking around and picking locks, Perception will also do well as a stat. Also, if you plan to use a lot of ranged weapons, this stat will also be useful.


All characters regardless of build will do well to have a decent amount of points in their Endurance as this increases the health for a character. Not only that, when running, you will have a slower decay for the sprint bar, this allowing the character to sprint a few extra miles more.


Charisma is not intended for any combat-related skills. But if you plan to do a lot of trading and negotiating, then Charisma will be a big help. On the funny side, getting a lot of Charisma will make you more prone to alcoholic and substance addiction.


If fast tracking your leveling is your gameplay, then Intelligence is key. An important factor in progression is XP, and Intelligence enhances XP gains. Those with a progressive build would do well to put max points on this stat.


In addition to Perception, VATS-reliant characters will also find Agility useful. It enhances your percentage of putting down enemies by increasing the available quantity of action points that you can use while using VATS. Also, if you plan to move around in stealth quite a lot, Agility also enhances your sneaking skills.


Luck is for those who plan to collect items. Being able to find good items is greatly enhanced by this stat. Also, ranged and melee fighters will do well to consider this as a secondary stat as it increases damage brought about by critical hits as well.


There is a total of 70 entirely different perks, allowing for a maximum of 10 points for each S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stat. A new perk will unlock for each stat point you gain.

Balancing the game despite the level of the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stat is what the perks are for. You get a more specialized or skill-centered perk the higher you rank in an appropriate S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stat.

Perk Rank

There is a rank to some of these perks. Meaning that when players reach a new level, they can climb up to the next rank for their perk, rather than choosing a whole new perk for their character. We say ‘climb up’ since in order to get to a rank 3, they will already have precedent ranks. Example, in order for a player to get rank 3 Gun Nut, they will already have ranks 1 and 2 Gun Nut.
A perk’s potential increases with the increase in rank. Some of these perks are entirely based on your stats. For example, the efficiency of working with high-level guns is enhanced by the ranks of the Gun Nut perk. On the other hand, there are also perks that aim to further improve your skills. For example, at rank 1 Intimidation, by pointing a gun at a lower-leveled character, you are able to pacify him/her. At rank 2, anyone that you have already pacified, you can instead motivate to attack a target of your choice. At rank 3, anyone that you have pacified, you can issue a specific command for them to follow.

Additional Perks

In addition to these, by finding magazines in-game in the wasteland, players can also gain perks. A system which makes Fallout 4 all the more awesome.
These additional perks are over 100 in total. They either give a new individual perk, or upgrade the rank of a perk that is related to a specific magazine. For example, rank for the Barbarian perk can be increased by finding the Grognak the Barbarian magazine that comes in 10 issues. By doing so, melee attacks will increase its critical damage dealt.

Worried about missing an amazing side quest in Fallout 4? Then this deal is for you: Use the coupon code FALL41 to get 10 USD off when picking up Killer Guides' Fallout 4 Guide. In this guide you’ll find all undocumented quests as well as proven builds, weapon modification tips, and building settlement strategies and much, much more! Click here to read a review from one of the most popular community sites for Fallout 4.

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Building Settlement

One of the most exciting features to come to the Fallout series is the ability to craft buildings and create your very own settlement. This is a feature that fans of the game have been trying to get implemented for quite some time, which made the E3 announcement an incredible experience for older players. Creating settlements in Fallout 4 isn’t going to just be about building a cool base that you can sit in and do nothing with, but will instead host a variety of benefits to improve your character and offer advantages within the questline.

Start Building

Of course, you don’t get to start with some huge base and an unlimited supply of materials. You’ll have to gather materials before you can start building, but this will make the end product even more rewarding. Different buildings will require an abundance of materials to build based off their components, which you’ll be able to gather up in a couple of ways.

You’ll be able to find materials scattered on the ground as you venture into the world, so keep an eye out. They can be anything from a beaten up old tire to a piece of scrap metal. Almost anything you find is useful in some way, even if it’s a rusty toaster. You can also scrap other items to obtain some of their components, which can then be used in building and weapon crafting. Scrapped materials don’t have to be placed in your inventory so they won’t take up room, but will instead become available when you go and build something.

You now have your materials and are ready to build. To get started, find one of the major locations allocated for building and get started on your settlement! There are locations all over the map and you don’t have to just choose one, you can build multiple settlements.


Settlement Management

While you may want to build your base as enormous as possible with a large variety of shops and merchants, it’s important to start small and build your way up so that maintenance doesn’t become an issue. Your people need food, water, beds, protection, and much more. There’s a list of stats that need to be kept up in order to prevent people from leaving, and to encourage more people to move in.

Here is a list of resources you’ll have to keep in check in order to maintain a functioning base:

  • People
  • Food
  • Water
  • Power
  • Safety
  • Beds
  • Happiness
  • Size

If any of these features falls out of whack, it usually messes up multiple things and makes it hard to recover. For example, if the size of your base is too large without sufficient protection, your people will begin to lose safety which will also affect their happiness.

Weapon Modifications

Your weapons are fully customizable and their functions change according to how your design its individual components. You will need a Weapons Workbench in order to be able to modify weapons. There are 50 base weapons and more than 700 modifications in terms of scopes, stocks, sights, and more. Turning a simple baseball bat into a bladed one is very much doable with a crafting system this complex.
Crafting 1
Remember that all items that can be crafted are designed much like their real-life counterpart. Case in point, electricity is required for a turret to run. So, you will need a power generator and wires to connect them to.

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A sense of freedom has always been offered by Bethesda to their open world RPG players. When it comes to having a companion or not, players can also exercise that same sense of freedom to do as they prefer. Whether a player will go lone wolf, or have a companion on his adventures is entirely up to him. However, those who prefer to go alone will receive a special perk such as a lone wanderer

Additionally, players can also have a romantic relationship with their companions. Even though this is only limited to human companions (Mr. Handy is out of the question), it is still possible regardless of gender. There are even some specific trophies related to companion such as Loveable (need to reach maximum relationship with 1 companion) and Never Go it Alone (need to recruit at least 5 companions)

Companion in Fallout 4 is immortal. When it is seriously injured, it will be only in an incapacitated for a while.

There will be 12 companions in the game. Below are 4 examples.


This adorable dog resides in the Commonwealth and can be seen wandering around Red Rocket Station near Sanctuary Hills. Previously, he was called simply as Dog. Until an unidentified survivor informs the Sole Survivor that his name is in fact, Dogmeat. Whether he had a previous owner or none, is entirely unknown.


Codsworth is still alive and ready to be of service to his master 200 years after the apocalypse. During pre-apocalypse, he was the character’s robotic Mr. Handy butler. He can also be found roaming around Sanctuary Hills. He can speak about 1,000 names including that of his master. The loss of his flamethrower arm, though, was his injury during the great war.

Preston Garvey

Garvey is the leader of the Commonwealth Minutemen and can be found in Concord. After a group of raiders attacked them, they took refuge inside the Museum of Freedom where the Sole Survivor found them trapped inside. Originally, they were comprised of 20 people, but were eventually reduced to 4.


Donning a red leather jacket and newsboy hat, Piper can be found in Diamond City. She has her own newspaper company called Public Occurrences and has a little sister. She will eventually help the Sole Survivor in entering the city by passing him on as a merchant from Quincy.

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Information regarding the minimum and recommended PC specs requirements for Fallout 4 has already been released by Bethesda. It will require between 28 and 35 GB of storage space for console players, whether it be on the Xbox One or on the PlayStation 4. To come up with an exact number for the storage requirement, it will be based on territory and supported language.


  • Windows 7/8/10 (64-bit OS required)
  • Intel Core i5-2300 2.8 GHz/AMD Phenom II X4 945 3.0 GHz or equivalent
  • 8 GB RAM
  • 30 GB free HDD space
  • NVIDIA GTX 550 Ti 2GB/AMD Radeon HD 7870 2GB or equivalent


  • Windows 7/8/10 (64-bit OS required)
  • Intel Core i7 4790 3.6 GHz/AMD FX-9590 4.7 GHz or equivalent
  • 8 GB RAM
  • 30 GB free HDD space
  • NVIDIA GTX 780 3GB/AMD Radeon R9 290X 4GB or equivalent

How to Check If Your PC Can Run Fallout 4

Whether your beloved computer could run Fallout 4 or not, regardless if you’re not a computer geek and do not know what the technical data shown above means, there’s a quick way to test. A great detection tool can be used over at Systemrequirementslab.com. Here’s how:

  • Go to the the site
  • Choose Fallout 4
  • Click “Can You Run It”

A quick check will be done to your PC and which part needs to be upgraded will be notified by the site. This will require the latest version of Javascript. If you don’t have one yet, you can download and install it from here. There is also a very easy and straightforward light version of the program that can be installed.

Planning to upgrade your PC for Fallout 4? We wrote a killer guide to building a gaming PC for Fallout 4. The best part? It includes custom builds for both, budget and performance gamers.


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Useful Links

Official Sites

Fallout 4’s official website.

Bethesda updates news and info for Fallout 4, Skyrim, Elder Scrolls Online, and Doom in this blog.

Official Twitter account for Bethesda Softworks.

You can also let the community and the devs know about your opinions of the game by posting it here.


The place to be for Fallout’s PC fans.

This is, by far, Fallout 4’s biggest online community.

Covers topics ranging from the mundane to something more hard core.


Fallout fansite that collects all related news and features.

Fansite for the Fallout series.

The place to be for all your Fallout 4 needs

A dedicated fan-created encyclopedia of everything Fallout 4.

Fansite full of comprehensive information and leveling strategies.

For everything Fallout where there are lots of news, views, and fan-made media.

Stay ahead of Fallout 4 rumors, opinions, facts, and current news.

Worried about missing an amazing side quest in Fallout 4? Then this deal is for you: Use the coupon code FALL41 to get 10 USD off when picking up Killer Guides' Fallout 4 Guide. In this guide you’ll find all undocumented quests as well as proven builds, weapon modification tips, and building settlement strategies and much, much more! Click here to read a review from one of the most popular community sites for Fallout 4.

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