It has been well over a month since its release, and I’ve played one character for most of that time. I only got to post this now during the Holiday season due to work. For the first playthrough, I think players must be able to experience as much of the game as possible to get as complete of an impression of how it is as a whole and to enjoy it as much as possible. Whether you actually go with this build or disagree with it, it’s still important to play it the way you want. But if you ask me, the best build for your first character must be one that lets you see close to everything and get your money’s worth.
The key is to go for breadth while still banking on a specific strength. You want to be able to craft as much stuff as you’d like, get the most out of dialogue, use most of the weapons, and still be effective in combat. Mind you, it also depends on the starting difficulty you choose to go with, so you have to decide on Normal or Hard at least and be sure that you can handle it. (You’re not one of those flip-floppers who change difficulty settings in the middle of the game, right?)
Finish the Game on the First Run
Before I get to this “best build,” this must be addressed. As much as possible, no matter what build you do, don’t cop out. If you’re a perfectionist when it comes to stat and skill allocation—a munchkin, more or less—then it’s recommended that you do it only for subsequent playthroughs.
How good can you make a character if you don’t know that much about the game yet? There’s nothing wrong with powergaming in this game, but you should at least not have to start over after getting to a certain point with your first character. It also makes sure that when you do decide to drop the game later, at least you’ve seen as much as you can to properly make that judgment.
The Best Build for Your First Fallout 4 Character
NOTE: The starting stat allocation has been refined since my first character, but it may not be perfect yet. You may test more builds for yourself with this character builder.
Strength is at 3 for enough carry weight and to access the Armorer perk.
Perception starts at 4 and is boosted to 5 with the Perception bobblehead in Museum of Freedom (on the table Jun Long is leaning on when you rescue them). That bobblehead is the most accessible one in the game, while the others can only be realistically reached in later levels. The stat is for mostly VATS accuracy and lockpicking, as well as both Rifleman and Demolition Expert perks. You may increase Perception to get the Sniper perk, but you may already be high-leveled at that point and may not need it anymore.
Endurance is at 3 for enough HP to survive most damage (you’re supposed to run for cover when attacked) and to give access to the Toughness and Life Giver perks for more survivability. If you get the Endurance bobblehead later, you can then get the Chem Resistant perk for less chem addiction.
Charisma is at 3 to give access to the Lady Killer/Black Widow perk and lets you put in more points on the stat up to 6 to access the Local Leader perk for more settlement building options.
Intelligence is at 6 to access the Science! perk. Both Gun Nut and Science! perks are to be maxed out to fully mod your guns. You should also get the Medic perk to make stimpaks more effective. If you get the Intelligence bobblehead later on in the Boston Public Library, you can get the Chemist perk for longer chem effect duration. You can also get Scrapper if you’re somehow short on screws and stuff, but only get it if you really can’t get those components (if you use Tag for Search, you should be fine).
Agility is at 7 to access the Ninja perk. You should max out both Sneak and Ninja since they’re your primary perks for this build (sneak attacks for big damage from far away). You can also get Action Boy/Girl for more AP regeneration and Moving Target for defense since you should be sprinting from cover to cover with this character.
Luck is at 2 for the Scrounger perk since ammo can be quite scarce for some guns. If you get the Luck bobblehead (far away in Spectacle Island), then you can get Bloody Mess for obvious reasons. (If you opt to not get Scrounger, then you can start with Luck at 1 and put that point into Charisma.)
There are six aspects to Fallout 4’s gameplay—Combat, Survival, Exploration, Interaction, Crafting.
Satisfying all six means you experience more of the game and miss less. Whatever you do miss can then be experienced in subsequent playthroughs. For this build, you’ll miss out on mostly melee weapons and big guns, as well as whatever perks you may not get. Everything else should be within reach for this character.
You have to be able to handle just about any enemy in the game while staying alive, explore any location on the map, obtain whatever item you want, fully interact with any NPC, and mod your weapons and armor. Too much into any area would make another area lacking, so the right balance must be achieved. It doesn’t mean every area must be absolutely equal since this game doesn’t have all aspects of its gameplay on equal footing (e.g. dialogue). It means every area should be adequate for your needs.
The answer to combat here is sniping—stealth killing from long range. It’s doubly great in this case due to suppressor mods for ballistic weapons through Gun Nut level 3. With a high level of Sneak and Ninja along with suppressed guns, you’ll be able to pick enemies off easily. When they do detect you, there should be mines in between you and them so they get blown up when they make a beeline for you, and whatever is left gets finished off with a combat rifle or shotgun.
You can also go for automatic weapons, but you can run out of ammo quite quickly that way due to how many enemies there can be in a lot of combat encounters (unless you’re a Counter-Strike player). Therefore, semi-automatic weapons are recommended, and that’s not really limiting since most guns’ receivers can be modified to fire either semi-auto or full auto.
With survivability, it’s mostly Toughness and Medic for damage resistance and stimpak healing respectively. You could also get Action Boy/Girl and Moving Target to sprint from cover to cover while getting hit less. You can count Armorer here as well since you’d want to have the best armor you can wear, especially if you get the Ballistic Weave from the Railroad.
For exploration, it seems logical to put lockpicking, hacking, and scavenging (or looting) in this category. I feel these perks are mostly optional; get them only if you really feel the need to loot everything. If you do want to pick all locks and hack all terminals in your adventures, go with only one of the perks at first and have either Cait (lockpicking) or Nick Valentine (hacking) cover the other.
As for crafting (or modding), you’ll want to get all of Gun Nut and Science! to get the most out of your guns, as well as Armorer for both your armor and power armor mods. Get the Scrapper perk as well if you keep coming short with certain components, but only if there’s no other way about it.
As for Local Leader, only get it if you’re really going to fetter with settlements. I personally don’t find the settlement building in this game to be compelling enough, which is why I can consider not going for that perk until level 50+.
Take note that this “best build” is merely my idea of how to best learn Fallout 4 as a whole, but you can still play the way you want. Just know that Fallout 4 different than the other Bethesda Fallout games due to its writing and gameplay changes (which many dislike), so there should be a different approach to it.
Do you have other ideas for the best build for maximizing gameplay experience? Please leave them on the comment section below. You may also leave a message on either Facebook or Twitter. Thank you for dropping by.