[Top 10] Fallout New Vegas Best Builds That Are Fun To Play!

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What are the most fun character builds to play in Fallout: New Vegas?

Hello, my darlings. I’m back again with another Fallout New Vegas Top Ten list for you. Here, we’ll take a look at my picks for the top ten builds to make your trip through the Wasteland fun and unique.

Some of these lean heavier into the role-playing aspect, depending on the player to act as the character would. Some made the list as solid choices for gameplay, and some are here just because I find them fun and interesting. Did any of your favorites make the list? Read on to find out!

10. Ultimate Starting Build

Well-rounded Smarty-Pants of the Wasteland

I found this beauty here.

This build made the list because it’s meant to give you a strong start and many benefits early in the game, thus the name—Ultimate Starting Build. Because of the way Fallout: New Vegas works, particularly the ability to re-spec your character as you leave Goodsprings, this build is well rounded and designed to let you complete the starting missions before heading into the Wasteland with boosted skills.

Maxed-out intelligence is a key component of this build, as you will gain tons of skill points during the first few levels. Just two levels will net you 30 skill points to distribute. With that, you can level three skills significantly, or give small boosts to several skills. The Swift Learner perk is a necessity early on, as it speeds up the process quite a bit. 

This build is ideal because it gives you a great starting point to build whatever kind of character you like. Just pick perks and gear after the prologue that fit the character build you want. 

What Ultimate Starting Build Excels In:

  • Lots of skill points early in the game
  • Complete all the Goodsprings starting missions
  • You can re-spec as you head into the Wasteland, switching out the Good-Natured trait for something that doesn’t hold back your violence quite so much.

Ultimate Starting Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—5

Perception—5

Endurance—5

Charisma—5

Intelligence—10

Agility—5

Luck—5

  • Traits: Wild Wasteland, Good Natured
  • Tagged Skills: Speech, Barter, Explosives
  • Essential Perks: Swift Learner, Retention, Comprehension, Educated
  • Favored Weapons: Dependent on playstyle after Goodsprings
  • Favored Gear: Dependent on playstyle after Goodsprings

9. The Cowboy Build

The bringer of Wasteland justice

Find this build here

I firmly believe that anyone traversing the Wasteland should take at least one trip as a justice-dealing desperado. For this, the Cowboy build is perfect. With high Agility, along with boosted Strength and Luck, the Cowboy can be the “Fastest Shot in the West,” boasting a high critical chance and ideal V.A.T.S. usage. 

This build can handle Hardcore mode for those players who want more challenges to their apocalypse. Just tag the Survival skill and take some associated perks along the way. What you gain in speed and accuracy, you lose in stealth. The Cowboy is not one for hiding in the shadows. Get out there and mess ‘em up, Wasteland style. Loud and proud.  

To me, the Cowboy is the bringer of Wasteland justice and should be played with positive karma as you work to bring law back to the lawless. 

What The Cowboy Build Excels In:

  • Fast, accurate shots, especially with V.A.T.S.
  • Fun role-play opportunities
  • Well-rounded character with strong playability through the whole game

The Cowboy Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—6

Perception—5

Endurance—5

Charisma—5

Intelligence—5

Agility—8

Luck—6

  • Traits: Skilled, Built to Destroy
  • Major Skills: Guns, Melee Weapons, Explosives
  • Minor Skills: Barter, Repair
  • Essential Perks: Cowboy, Quick Draw, Rapid Reload, Lady Killer, Mysterious Stranger, Intense Training (2)
  • Favored Weapons: Ranger Sequoia, Lucky, That Gun, Medicine Stick, any weapon affected by the Cowboy perk
  • Favored Gear: Authority Glasses, Any cowboy hat, Joshua Graham’s armor
  • Companions: Raul or Cass

8. The Courser Build

Truly the Lone Wanderer of the Wasteland

Find the Courser here.

This fantastic build was inspired by YouTuber FudgeMuppet. If you’re like me and you loved Fallout 4, you’ll be familiar with the tale of the Courser. I loved it and took the original idea a bit further here. This one leans heavily on the player’s role-playing aspects, but the Old World Blues DLC content lends a lot to the cyborg storyline.

A product of the Institute, the Courser is a Generation 3 Synth meant to hunt down and capture his own kind. After intense training, the Courser emerged the best of the best, a vessel of death and destruction.

This build is heavy on the lasers and futuristic energy weapons as the Courser sweeps across the Wasteland. Out on his own and away from the watchful eye of the Institute, the Courser fell into a more humane patch in his long life. A chance meeting with a scientist helped him access sentiment and emotions for the first time. But when the scientist died of old age, the Courser set out once more, alone and aimless. 

The Courser eventually finds the Mojave, where he can remake himself into whoever he wants to be. Will he return to his former ways, hunting any synths who managed to escape this far? Or will he work for the good of the humans, living among them as if he was also human? Would it even work? Could he let himself forget for a while and just be the human he was modeled after?

What The Courser Build Excels In:

  • Excellent opportunity for role play that ties different Fallout games together
  • High intelligence helps level faster and boosts a lot of skills
  • Great critical chance, lone ranger type of character

 The Courser Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—4

Perception—6

Endurance—5

Charisma—1

Intelligence—10

Agility—8

Luck—6

  • Traits: Skilled, Good Natured
  • Major Skills: Energy Weapons, Science, Repair
  • Minor Skills: Medicine, Lockpicking, Sneak
  • Essential Perks: Educated, Living Anatomy, Finesse, Robotics Expert, Better Criticals, Nerves of Steel, Laser Commander, Meltdown, Light Touch, Tunnel Runner
  • Favored Weapons: AER14 Prototype to mid-game, Elijah’s Advanced LAER to endgame
  • Favored Gear: Ulysses’ Duster
  • Companions: None. The Courser walks alone. 

7. Suicide Squad Build

Up-close, explosive chaos personified

Check it out here.

Another build inspired by FudgeMuppet, the Suicide Squad build is the barbarian of my heart’s desire. Fallout isn’t always about meticulously counting every single stat point and constantly ensuring maximum efficiency. Sometimes you just want to let go and Hulk smash everything in sight. 

This build is a must-try for fans of explosives and unarmed combat. Low intelligence is a key component of this build, as you won’t be able to learn a lot of skills, leaving you to get creative as you make your way across the Mojave. High strength and endurance will let your power through most injuries and really pack a punch as you do it. 

What Suicide Squad Build Excels In:

  • Pure chaos, unleashed
  • Fun tank build to take and cause tons of damage
  • With Lily and Rex by your side, your little Suicide Squad will wreak havoc across the wasteland

Suicide Squad Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—10

Perception—5

Endurance—10

Charisma—5

Intelligence—1

Agility—5

Luck—4

  • Traits: Heavy Handed, Wild Wasteland
  • Major Skills: Melee Weapons, Unarmed, Explosives
  • Minor Skills: Repair, Medicine
  • Essential Perks: Heave Ho!, Demolition Expert (All Ranks), Bloody Mess, Stonewall, Hit the Deck, Adamantium Skeleton, Unstoppable Force, Piercing Strike, Splash Damage, Mad Bomber, Super Slam
  • Favored Weapons: Any thrown explosive, and either The Chainsaw, Two-Step Goodbye, or Oh, Baby! Super Sledge
  • Favored Gear: Sierra Madre Armor, Reinforced; armor and helmet
  • Companions: Lily and Rex

6. Laser Gunner Build

Futuristic Agent of Destruction

Check it out here.

In the ruins of the Wasteland, it’s easy to see why so many yearn for technology beyond their means. Enter the Laser Gunner. A master of Energy Weapons, the Laser Gunner is one of the most powerful builds in the game. Expect to cut through enemies with ease using your lasers. 

Most lasers can blast through the enemies’ armor, often disintegrating the foe on a critical hit. This setup can also work as a sniper build, with the added perk of more damage. Early on in the game, start by targeting limbs and disabling enemies. Later on, just target their heads and blast them away—up close or at a distance.

What Laser Gunner Build Excels In:

  • One of the most powerful builds in the game. Cut through enemies with energy weapons.
  • With the selected perks, keep equipment running properly and use it to wreak massive damage with your lasers.
  • Strong playability throughout the game

Laser Gunner Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—4

Perception—7

Endurance—5

Charisma—6

Intelligence—6

Agility—6

Luck—6

  • Traits: Good Natured, Kamikaze
  • Major Skills: Energy Weapons, Science, Repair
  • Essential Perks: Rapid Reload, Comprehension, Vigilant Recycler, Commando, Scrounger, Finesse, Jury Rigging, Meltdown, Better Criticals, Sniper, Robotics Expert, Action Boy/Girl, Grim Reaper’s Sprint, Laser Commander, Nerves of Steel
  • Favored Weapons: YCS/186, Q-35 Matter Modulator, Holorifle
  • Favored Gear: Joshua Graham’s Armor, Ulysses’ Duster
  • Companions: Rex, Cass

5. Melee Warrior Build

Guns? We don’t need no stinking guns.

Check it out here.

For those players who want a real challenge in Fallout: New Vegas, I give you the melee warrior build. Many of the enemies you’ll face in the Wasteland are stronger and more dangerous than you are when it comes to melee combat. You take a risk every time you run headfirst into battle, especially while using light armor. 

This build is doubly difficult because V.A.T.S. doesn’t let you target limbs with melee weapons. You can only target the body in general, so players will need to be proficient in combat without V.A.T.S. assistance. However, V.A.T.S. attacks are unblockable, so use them as well when fighting melee opponents and use blocks of your own.

What Melee Warrior Build Excels In:

  • Lots of damage bonuses against enemies
  • Perks granting high Damage Threshold
  • A fun challenge for veteran players

 Melee Warrior Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—7

Perception—4

Endurance—6

Charisma—5

Intelligence—6

Agility—5

Luck—7

  • Traits: Heavy Handed, Kamikaze
  • Major Skills: Melee Weapons, Sneak, Medicine
  • Essential Perks: Hunter, Swift Learner, Black Widow/Lady Killer, Cherchez la Femme/Confirmed Bachelor, Travel Light, Entomologist, Bloody Mess, Living Anatomy, Stonewall, Super Slam, Finesse, Fast Metabolism, Piercing Strike, Silent Running, Unstoppable Force, Ninja Slayer
  • Favored Weapons: Melee Weapon of Choice
  • Favored Gear: Light Armor of Choice
  • Companions: Ed-E, Arcade, Raul

4. Great Khan Warrior Build

Dedicated warrior in search of glory

Check it out here.

Another of the amazing builds inspired by FudgeMuppet, the Great Khan Warrior is a lone nomad wandering the Wasteland in search of glory for his tribe. Having lived a mostly solitary life, this warrior has little to no social skills, but he makes up for that with his weapons talent. His only driving ambition is to cut a killing path through his opponents. A hard life has given him maxed Endurance, meaning he can take the hits and just keep going. 

With automatic weapons, he deals insane criticals, but his unarmed attacks remain a force of chaos in New Vegas. Though his people may be exiled to a faraway land, the Great Khan Warrior is determined to reclaim large sections of the Mojave and bring back the fallen glory of the Great Khan tribe. 

What Great Khan Warrior Build Excels In:

  • Strength and endurance. The Great Khan Warrior hits hard and can take a hit.
  • It takes a lot of Luck to survive in the Wasteland alone, and this build has it. 
  • Guns. Lots of guns. 

 Great Khan Warrior Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—8

Perception—6

Endurance—10

Charisma—1

Intelligence—4

Agility—1

Luck—10

  • Traits: Built to Destroy, Hot Blooded
  • Major Skills: Unarmed, Guns, Survival
  • Minor Skills: Melee Weapons, Repair
  • Essential Perks: Finesse, Fight the Power, Super Slam!, Better Criticals, Piercing Strike, Unstoppable Force, Heavyweight, Bloody Mess, Tribal Wisdom, Hunter
  • Favored Weapons: Automatic Rifle, Light Machine Gun, Salt-Upon-Wounds’ Power Fist, Fist of Roar
  • Favored Gear: The Armor of the 87th Tribe, Salt-Upon-Wounds’ Helmet

3. Stealth Build

Did you just see that?

Check it out here.

Stealth has a great deal of value in the Wasteland. Sneak into places you aren’t supposed to be, steal whatever you can get your hands on, and enjoy serious critical damage boosts with a stealth build. This character setup gives you lots of options for playstyle, too. 

I particularly enjoy playing as a sniper, killing my enemies from afar with as little risk to myself as possible. You can also go the stealth melee route and sneak up on your foes. Or even the pacifist route, sneaking past them altogether. 

The nighttime is the right time for this build. You will be much stronger at night, melting into the shadows and free to sneak up on an enemy and take them out with a silenced gun. 

What Stealth Build Excels In:

  • Getting into places where the Courier generally shouldn’t be
  • There any many places to hide in the Wasteland and keeping a low profile can help you avoid much of the conflict
  • Sneak attacks have significantly increased damage, and this build is great for a sniper. 

Stealth Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—4

Perception—7

Endurance—4

Charisma—5

Intelligence—7

Agility—7 (+1 from Small Frame)

Luck—7

  • Traits: Small Frame, Good Natured
  • Major Skills: Sneak, Science, Speech
  • Minor Skills: Survival, Medicine
  • Essential Perks: Friend of the Night, Travel Light, Demolition Expert, The Professional, Gunslinger, Quick Draw, Finesse, Night Person, Hit the Deck, Robotics Expert, Silent Running, Splash Damage, Light Step, Tag! (Guns or Energy Weapons), Laser Commander (for Energy Weapons), Infiltrator
  • Favored Weapons: Christine’s CoS Silenced Sniper Rifle, Sleepytime, Ratslayer
  • Favored Gear: Stealth Suit MKII
  • Companions: Arcade or Raul

2. Gunslinger Build

I do not shoot with my gun, I shoot with my mind. 

Check it out here.

I found this build on Reddit, and it is detailed and optimized. Check out the link for the full details on what to do at each level to run a fully optimized Gunslinger Build. Keep in mind you will need the Intelligence Implant after level two, and the Perception Implant by level 16. The Strength and Agility implants are low priority. 

This whole build makes me think of Roland from The Dark Tower by Stephen King, which adds several layers to the potential role play here for fans of the series. Overall, I find this build extremely playable, and the added roleplay makes me much more invested in the character. 

What Gunslinger Build Excels In:

  • With implant boosts, the Gunslinger Build has solid stats.
  • Fun role-play options that fit very well into the New Vegas world
  • Good balance of available skill and equipment throughout the game

Gunslinger Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—3

Perception—5

Endurance—4

Charisma—1

Intelligence—9

Agility—9

Luck—9

  • Traits: Built to Destroy, Fast Shot
  • Major Skills: Melee Weapons, Repair, Sneak
  • Minor Skills: Guns, Medicine
  • Essential Perks: Light Touch, Rapid Reload, Educated, The Professional, Cowboy, Finesse, Gunslinger, Jury Rigging, Better Criticals, Sniper, Grim Reaper’s Sprint, Bloody Mess, Action Boy/Girl, Demolition Expert, Toughness, Mysterious Stranger/Miss Fortune, Intense Training (4), Just Lucky I’m Alive
  • Favored Weapons: Revolvers, Ranger Sequoia, Combat Knife
  • Favored Gear: Desperado Cowboy Hat, Leather Armor

1. Sterling Archer Build

Do you want rad roaches? Because that’s how you get rad roaches. 

This build is inspired by this thread.

Playing your way through the Wasteland as the world’s best super spy Sterling Archer is always a fun way to go. Drink every bit of alcohol you can find, regardless of whether it is convenient to do so. Skip through all mission information and bumble your way through everything with sheer force of will and snarky comebacks. 

Use your perfect situational awareness to count the shots in your enemies’ weapons and then burst out from cover to snatch the kill. Make sure you randomly distribute your skill points, as Archer is big on universal skills. No S.P.E.C.I.A.L. loadout is going to capture the glory that is Archer perfectly, but I think this one does a decent job. 

This build is the perfect blend of role-playing and the existing game structure. Basically, get drunk all the time, don’t read any of the mission info, and make consistently bad choices and you have the perfect playstyle for a Sterling Archer build. 

What Sterling Archer Build Excels In:

  • Incredibly fun to play. Archer would wake up in the apocalypse after falling drunk into a cryopod two hundred years ago.
  • Guns and Melee Weapons, Survival, Critical Chance
  • Roleplay storyline that fits shockingly well with many of the dialogue choices. 

Sterling Archer Build Details:

  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Attributes

Strength—5

Perception—8

Endurance—7

Charisma—5

Intelligence—4

Agility—5

Luck—6

  • Traits: Skilled, Built to Destroy
  • Major Skills: Guns, Survival, Speech
  • Minor Skills: Melee Weapons, Explosives, Unarmed
  • Essential Perks: Lady Killer, Confirmed Bachelor, Rapid Reload, Educated, Toughness, Living Anatomy, Animal Friend, Finesse, Action Boy, Chemist, Nerves of Steel, Scrounger, Better Criticals, Paralyzing Palm, Slayer
  • Favored Weapons: Ranger Sequoia, Lucky, A Light Shining in Darkness, any gun with Critical Chance bonus
  • Favored Gear: Formal Wear tuxedo, any suit, disguises
  • Companion: Cass, because everyone needs a drinking buddy

You may also be interested in:

 

[Top 15] Best Fallout New Vegas Mods For A Brand New Experience

https://www.gamersdecide.com/articles/fallout-new-vegas-best-mods

[Top 10] Fallout New Vegas Best Armor Mods

https://www.gamersdecide.com/articles/fallout-new-vegas-best-armor-mods

[Top 10] Fallout New Vegas Best Animation Mods

https://www.gamersdecide.com/articles/fallout-new-vegas-best-animation-mods



An impetuous gnome artificer in the wilds of Ohio, Amanda maintains there's no problem you can't role play your way out of - and she's proven it. Sometimes, chaotic stupid is an alignment.
Gamer Since: 1990
Favorite Genre: RPG
Currently Playing: Fallout: New Vegas (modded); Assassin's Creed: Valhalla; Resident Evil: Village;
Top 3 Favorite Games:BioShock, Fallout: New Vegas, The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim - Dragonborn


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Teklanor's picture

Teklanor 11 hours 42 min ago

Great guide. I love how much information you have down. I'm just getting into New Vegas so this is wonderful. I am wondering why the Laser Gunner Build has Cass as a Companion or is that just personal preference? I don't seem to use the drinks in the game much so her perk doesn't offer much to me.

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