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Just started playing Fallout 3:New Vegas again. One of the first quests is to break into the safe in the school house. You start out with 15 points for lockpick skill, but you need 25 to attempt to lockpick the safe.

Handily, our good companion gives you a Lockpick book granting you +10 to lockpick skill temporarily.

However, if you're an idiot, like me, you forget that it's temporary and just read that bad boy straight off the bat.

Where can I find a replacement this early in the game?

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I'm fairly sure the bulk of the loot is randomized. If your science skill is high enough, you can try hacking the computer next to the safe to unlock it though. –  Fluttershy Oct 20 '12 at 21:22
    
Reload your save? –  SevenSidedDie Oct 20 '12 at 21:41
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Just a clarification, books give permanent boosts (+3). Magazines give a temporary boost of +10. –  Wilerson Oct 21 '12 at 0:41
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up vote 6 down vote accepted

You'll need a bit of luck, but your best chance is to search all of the Mailboxes around Goodsprings.

Their loot is randomized, so there are no guarantees here, but mailboxes do have a pretty substantial chance to hold a random skill magazine.

Alternately, if your lockpick skill is lacking, but Science is strong (or if your mailbox rummaging found you a Science mag instead of a Lockpick mag), you can access the same box from the computer terminal nearby with 25 Science.

And if all else fails, honestly, don't sweat it. The loot in the locker is low level and randomized. It (and the XP from the unlock) ate certainly nice to have, but definitely not a big deal in the scheme of things. You can always come back later, after gaining a level or two, if completionist OCD compels you to. The main point of the whole episode is to teach you about skill magazines and unlocking things. The loot isn't really a big deal at this point in the game.

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There are also some mailboxes outside of New Vegas. And you can always come back later when you have more lockpick skill. I would advise against using your lockpick books on low level locks. The followers fort also has a merchant that has magazines. –  Ids Oct 21 '12 at 23:03
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also, as a general hint, if you find a lock is protected where you can pick it, and use the computer, if you have the skill to do both, then pick it first for that experience, and then use the computer for that experience –  Sean Cheshire Nov 8 '12 at 21:57
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