In Skyrim I felt like I spoiled the game a bit by depending on Companions too much, so I'm determined to use them minimally in Fallout 4. However, I'm not the greatest player in the world and things are getting pretty tough: I just barely was able to save Ten Pines on my own. Am I going to flounder without going into Charisma enough to get lone wanderer now?

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    Any reason you don't want to turn down the difficulty? You can do it at any time from the settings menu.
    – pushasha
    Jul 5 '16 at 17:07
  • Hi Pushanta I did know that I could drop the difficulty level, and did it once to back out of a situation where tons of monotonous crafting would have been lost, but I don't mind dying a lot as long as its me not being very coordinated. I am struggling to understand VATS and damage in this game however so I suspected (rightly as it turns out) that I wasn't specced properly. Jul 6 '16 at 11:52


There are plenty of different possible ways to play this game, with or without a companion.

I've never taken Lone Wanderer in all the many times I've played through this game. That being said, I usually have a companion, but they're mostly around to act as a pack mule. The companion can be useful as a bit of a tank early on, as you can send them into a group of enemies to aggro them and then try to pick them off as they fight the companion. However, this becomes less useful the further you go in the game.

If you're building your character reasonably well, not even optimally, just reasonably well, then the game should get easier as you go. If you're making it without a companion already, then you shouldn't need one at any point in the future.

What qualifies as building your character reasonably well would be a separate question, and probably too broad unless very well worded. But, in short:

Use ranged weapons. Semi-automatic are generally better. Use VATS. Sneak most of the time enemies might be nearby. Stack crits by putting points into Luck and luck perks. Use your crits wisely by taking Awareness to spot the stronger enemies. Don't use a scope (high VATS cost). Get Ballistic Weave from the Railroad. Jet will save your butt, but Psychojet is even better. Explosives do insane damage, and can easily kill enemies much stronger than you.

  • Seven points in luck training for Better Criticals and Critical Banker with 6 points in awareness for Rifleman? Would you recommend Four Leaf Clover? Jul 5 '16 at 23:10
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    @MargaretMae Yes, I would get four leaf clover. I normally put as many points as possible in Better Criticals, Critical Banker, Grim Reaper's Sprint, and Four-Leaf Clover, regardless of other decisions regarding my build. Critical banker is the most important. Awareness is a perk, not the Perception stat. It is a Perception perk, though. Both Gunslinger and Rifleman work well with crits. Pistols generate more crits, but the crits are more devastating with rifles.
    – DCShannon
    Jul 5 '16 at 23:13
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    @MargaretMae I recently completed a playthrough on the new survival mode. I finished at about level 40. I used a Rifleman crit build, with a sprinkle of stealth. Throughout the game, I killed 90% of my enemies before they even managed to attack.
    – DCShannon
    Jul 5 '16 at 23:15
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    @MargaretMae If you're interested in a better weapon, I think the three best are Righteous Authority, Kellog's Pistol, and The Deliverer. Righteous Authority can be configured as either a rifle or a pistol, and can be obtained almost as soon as you start the game.
    – DCShannon
    Jul 5 '16 at 23:19
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    @MargaretMae Getting both Rifleman and Gunslinger is probably not a great idea. Rifleman only applies to rifles, and gunslinger only applies to pistols, so you can't benefit from both at the same time. Reflex sights reduce AP costs, scopes increase them. Righteous Authority as a main with Kellog's is crazy good. Always keep a crit ready with Critical Banker, and if you ever run out of AP, just whip out Kellog's pistol and fire one crit. This fills your AP, and you can switch back to the rifle and keep shooting. You're welcome!
    – DCShannon
    Jul 6 '16 at 19:43

When playing Fallout at the very hard settings, you are adding more to the challenge and it requires you to think before acting a bit more.

In Survival mode (which I assume, you may be doing...not sure), has reduced carry weight and lots of challenges, plus the enemy does more damage. Thats not even the half of the challenges of survival.

In truth, companions are liabilities.

It is easier to depend on a companion at the lower levels to tank for you, but eventually they wont at the point you are at now and further. In addition, the range of enemies you will face will intensify...you will have tougher opponents to fight, and lots more legendary tough opponents.

Few keys:

1. See first to your armor and weapons At all times, continue to optimize your weapons and increase the resistance and abilities of your armor. You should always be looking to tinker and improve them. You can increase your weapons damage by 15% to 20% by tinkering to improve whenever you can. The same with your armor.

2. Run away to fight another day

This is your biggest advantage over any enemy you face. No matter how close to death a Supermutant is, it will not flee. But you, you can -almost- always flee. The enemy will be there for a period while you are away. You can heal up, approach the enemy from a different angle, even get another sneak attack in. Use the cool down period to think about attack and fighting differently. If you see a fire fight going on, and you aren't in it, wait it out. Lots of great loot afterwards to get. Yes, you don't get the XP, and its craven...but when its a tough battle, its a tough battle...let others fight it.

For instance, a radscorpion can be a very tough creature to fight. Instead of trying to tackle it head on, dash your way towards a group of supermutants (This is a great scenario near Taffington Boathouse). The supermutants will fight the radscorpion, and you just run right past them all. The loot will be good, and you might even get XP. (In essence, you've made the Super Mutants your companions in the fight without risking Dogmeat or Cait!).

Once the fight dies down, skulk back, kill the remainder and loot.

Depend on your settlements and make them stronger than you are

A good settlement has a few important things: 1. Lots of well armed settlers 2. Good to great turret defenses. 3. Capacity to heal you and store stuff.

No matter how skilled you are, you can only fire one gun at a time. A good settlement can fire 10 to 15 guns at a time. Yes, settlers go down, but every bullet they take is a bullet meant for you. So arm your settlers and give them all the spare armor you find. Even give them better weapons and armor than what you carry. Give one the Cryolator, and another the plasma weapon you can't use cause you don't have enough ammo. They can make great use of it.

If you ever need to flee, and you have no friendly group of Gunners to flee into for help...try leading the enemy into your settlement.

Soon, you will have enough caps to make one of the settlers a doctor with medical skills. Once you've reached that achievement, you've made the settlement self sustaining, and more over, life sustaining for you out in the wilds of the Commonwealth. Just make sure to constantly keep arming and improving your settlers.

Dump assault rifles, laser rifles, miniguns, gatlings, whatever on them.
Dump combat armor on them, and build defensive spots for them to use.
Make sure they have a high ground to fight from against melee enemies.

In the end...companions are truly a liability, and their role as tank is near useless compared to intellect and team of settlers at your back. If you need a mule, bring dogmeat. Or simply store caches in safe spots and quickly retrieve them to bring back to your settlers.

The best place to store a good weapon, is on a settler. Preferably one of the ones you've assigned to Scavenging or Guard post.

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    A few things: Very Hard and Survival are mutually exclusive difficulty settings. If they're playing on Very Hard, they're not playing on Survival. You said companions are liabilities. This isn't true, and I see no supporting arguments. You mention "risking" Dogmeant and Cait. Companions can't die. Aggroing additional enemies is fun, but also quite dangerous. I'm a bit baffled by the suggestion you should use settlements in combat. Your main character should easily outclass an entire settlement of settlers in damage and survivability, without wasting resources on arming them.
    – DCShannon
    Jul 6 '16 at 22:51
  • On Very Hard, since your companion regenerates after a fight, make them aggro a group and toss a grenade at their feet.
    – Nelson
    Oct 24 '16 at 10:22
  • DCShannon...I disagree. First off, I said "the very hard settings" which means settings which are harder (in plural). In fact, I specifically mentioned that the OP was possibly playing Survival. Dec 4 '16 at 23:00

You can do fine without lone wanderer, but it would be nice to have. A good choice if you do end up wanting a companion an EXTREMELY good choice is to have an automatron partner because they are some of the strongest and can be upgraded and you can do whatever you want with them.

  • also the automatrons use robot repair kits and not the stimpacks that you use to heal yourself. Jul 24 '16 at 4:50

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