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Character Min-Max Guide by FrozenCascade

Version: 1.0 | Updated: 05/09/12


Fallout 3: Game of the Year Edition



[01] - Introduction
[02] - Basics
[03] - Statistics Overlay
[04] - Perk Overlay
[05] - Gameplay
[06] - Legal and Contact


[01] - Introduction

This guide contains information to assist you in creating a character that can
pretty much dominate the wasteland. It covers the areas that are going to be
maxed, what you absolutely must do in order to obtain them, and outlines your
require progression through the game. 


[02] - Basics

There are several factors to note at the very start. The first, playing on the
Game of the Year Edition, is that you need all the DLC up and running at the
beginning of the game. Also being taken into account are the S.P.E.C.I.A.L
stats, the 13 skill stats, damage resistance, radiation resistance, poison
resistance and fire resistance. These will also be accentuated with perks that
assist you in the best way possible.

The game will also be played on Normal difficulty. It doesn't really matter
what you decide to play it on, but you'll have 29 levels to obtain and the
harder the enemies the more experience you earn from killing them. Shifting it
up and down depending on the situation can work out quite well.

It is also worth noting that you'll have to do a lot of specific things at the
very start of your game simply to give yourself a better boost and also to set
yourself up for specific perks or quests. Normally low stats early on prohibits
you somewhat but it can be managed, just don't go trigger happy.


[03] - Statistics Overlay

The main concern is not to waste skill points during a level up and to be in
the right position for perks. There are many variables that effect skill
points, so to get 100 on each, some preparation is needed in determining where
you put your points earned.

- S.P.E.C.I.A.L

When available, place your points like so:

Strength	6
Perception	6
Endurance	6
Charisma	1
Intelligence	9
Agility		7
Luck		5

This will give you the highest amount of skill points per level, maximising
what you have to distribute. There is no sense wasting them. Having a low
Charisma will affect your Speech skill very early on, however, you have the
ability to use quicksave and quickload, so it is not much of a loss at all.

For level 30, choosing the perk Almost Perfect automatically makes all of your
S.P.E.C.I.A.L stats hit 9. Intelligence, at 10, will stay there. By waiting
until you have this perk to collect the related Bobbleheads, you can bring all
attributes to 10.

This takes all S.P.E.C.I.A.L attributes to 10.

- Skills

There are 13 skills that can be taken up to a maximum of 100. To work out the
best placement for your skill points on level, some reverse-engineering is
needed using skill point gains not received from levelling.

With S.P.E.C.I.A.L maxed at 10 in each attribute, your skills gain:

Barter		100 - 25 =	75		
Big Guns	100 - 25 =	75
Energy Weapons	100 - 25 =	75
Explosives	100 - 25 =	75
Lockpick	100 - 25 =	75
Medicine	100 - 25 =	75
Melee Weapons	100 - 25 =	75
Repair		100 - 25 =	75
Science		100 - 25 =	75
Small Guns	100 - 25 =	75
Sneak		100 - 25 =	75
Speech		100 - 25 =	75
Unarmed		100 - 25 =	75

Total Left		975 / 1300

Each skill also has a unique Bobblehead that grants +10:

Barter		75 - 10	=	65		
Big Guns	75 - 10	= 	65
Energy Weapons	75 - 10	= 	65
Explosives	75 - 10	= 	65
Lockpick	75 - 10	= 	65
Medicine	75 - 10	= 	65
Melee Weapons	75 - 10	= 	65
Repair		75 - 10	= 	65
Science		75 - 10	= 	65
Small Guns	75 - 10	= 	65
Sneak		75 - 10	= 	65
Speech		75 - 10	= 	65
Unarmed		75 - 10	= 	65

Total Left		845 / 1300

There are also stats from the G.O.A.T, perks and items to include:

Barter		65		65
Big Guns	65		65
Energy Weapons	65 - 10	=	55 - Cyborg
Explosives	65 - 15	=	50 - G.O.A.T
Lockpick	65 - 18	=	47 - G.O.A.T/Covert Ops
Medicine	65 - 5	=	60 - Daddy's Girl
Melee Weapons	65		65
Repair		65		65
Science		65 - 23	=	42 - G.O.A.T/Daddy's Girl/Covert Ops
Small Guns	65 - 3	=	62 - Covert Ops
Sneak		65 - 10	=	55 - Silent Running
Speech		65 - 10	=	55 - Yew's Bear Charm
Unarmed		65		65

Total Left		751 / 1300

Finally, there are the skill books littered around the world:

Barter		65 - 23	=	42
Big Guns	65 - 25	=	40
Energy Weapons	55 - 25	=	30
Explosives	50 - 25	=	25
Lockpick	47 - 25	=	22
Medicine	60 - 25	=	35
Melee Weapons	65 - 25	=	40
Repair		65 - 25	=	40
Science		42 - 25	=	17
Small Guns	62 - 25	=	37
Sneak		55 - 25	=	30
Speech		55 - 25	=	30
Unarmed		65 - 25	=	40

Total Left		428 / 1300

The only way beyond what you're given is to add skill points you earn from
levelling. Intelligence plays a big part in this. There are 29 levels and
escaping Vault 101 gives you one of these already. By running right to Rivet
City and collecting the Intelligence Bobblehead, you are given the maximum
amount of points.

(1*19)+(28*20) = 579

Removing the necessary skill points needed to take all skills to 100 leaves us
with 151 skill points gained by levelling that are free to use after reaching
level 21 or 22. In this instance, they simply replace the need for hunting down
the skill books you would have otherwise had to find. The amount you must place
in each skill is listed below, and must be followed. What you put points in
must also align with perks that have certain requirements, too, so do not waste
them by working from top to bottom as you level.

Barter		42
Big Guns	40
Energy Weapons	30
Explosives	25
Lockpick	22
Medicine	35
Melee Weapons	40
Repair		40
Science		17
Small Guns	37
Sneak		30
Speech		30
Unarmed		40

This takes all Skills to 100.

- Damage Resistance

Damage resistance has an in-game cap of 85% that cannot be passed. To get to
the cap is actually rather straightforward:

Perks:		Given	Total

Cyborg		+10%	10%
Toughness	+10%	20%
Survival Guru	+6%	26%
Barkskin	+5%	31%
Pitt Fighter	+3%	34%


T-51b Armour	+45%	79%
T-51b Helmet	+10%	89%

This takes Damage Resistance to the 85% cap.

- Radiation Resistance

As before, there is a cap of 85% with Radiation Resistance unable to be passed.
Thankfully, reaching it is not an issue.

Stats:		Given	Total

Endurance at 10 (10-1)*2 = 18%


Cyborg		+10%	28%
Survival Guru	+6%	34%
Booster Shot	+10%	44%
Pitt Fighter	+3%	47%


T-51b Armour	25%	72%
T-51b Helmet	8%	80%

Rather than sacrifice a perk or other armour to reach the cap of 85%, it is
best to simply take Rad-X to boost the last 5% you need. Regardless, if you
cannot survive at 80% Resist, you will not survive at 85%.

This takes Radiation Resistance to the 85% cap.

- Poison Resistance

Despite this being a rather irrelevant defensive attribute because of the lack
of usage by enemies, there are still several perks that cater to it.

Stats:		Given	Total

Endurance at 10 (10-1)*5 = 45%


Cyborg		+10%	55%
Survival Guru	+6%	61%

This takes Poison Resistance to the 61% limit.

- Fire Resistance

Not really used much beyond fire ants and Enclave Hellion soldiers. The
majority of resistance comes from a perk and items. There is Enclave armour
that has resistance, but the T-51b outshines it in much, much better ways,
making it redundant.

Perks:		Given	Total

Ant Might/Sight	+25%	25%


Fire ant nectar +25%	50%

This takes Fire Resistance to a 50% limit.

- Other stats

It should be noted that there are other welcome increases to other stats also.
These include:

- Carry Weight

Stats:		Given	Total

Strength at 10 (10*10)+150 = 250lbs


Strong Back	+50lbs	300lbs

Giving you a 300lb carry limit.

- Health

Stats:		Given	Total

Endurance at 10 (10*20)+(30*10)+90 = 590HP


Life Giver	+30HP	620HP


Buffout		+60HP	680HP

This can offer you 620 assured Hit Points, while boosting with Buffout for even
more should the need arise. Though, at maximum level with everything so far, it
really adds to how hard you are to actually kill.


[04] - Perk Overlay

At each level you'll gain the ability to choose a perk to augment your char. At
several points through the game during side-quests and DLC you'll also gain
others with little to no effort. For the most part, there are a lot to choose
from and so it becomes no small task to narrow down what to get, when to get it
and to be prepared to get it.

There are 72 perks available to you via levelling. Without bothering to list
them all, there are 47 perks that become useless or redundant. These include
ones that give skill points, radiation resistance or otherwise unecessary
effects and can be discarded for more personally improving perks. This gives
us 29 opportunities for perks and 25 to choose from via levelling.

Since you unlock a new range of perks every other level, the beginning often
doesn't give you much in the way of choice. When it does, you have to be ready
to obtain them otherwise you risk losing out more. The ideal path of perks is:

Level  2 - Black Widow
Level  3 - Daddy's Little Girl [4 INT]
Level  4 - Entomologist [40 Science 4 INT]
Level  5 - Iron Fist 1 [4 STR]
Level  6 - Bloody Mess
Level  7 - Toughness [5 END]
Level  8 - Strong Back [5 STR 5 END]
Level  9 - Commando
Level 10 - Finesse
Level 11 - Gunslinger
Level 12 - Silent Running [50 Sneak 6 AGI]
Level 13 - Sniper [6 AGI 6 PER]
Level 14 - Cyborg [60 Science 60 Medicine]
Level 15 - Robotics Expert 1 [50 Science]
Level 16 - Action Girl [6 AGI]
Level 17 - Better Criticals [6 PER 6 LCK]
Level 18 - Life Giver [6 END]
Level 19 - Demolition Expert [50 Explosives]
Level 20 - Grim Reaper's Sprint
Level 21 - Demolition Expert 2 [50 Explosives]	***
Level 22 - Demolition Expert 3 [50 Explosives]	***
Level 23 - Iron Fist 2 [4 STR]			***
level 24 - Iron Fist 3 [4 STR]			***
Level 25 - Quantum Chemist [70 Science]		***
Level 26 - Nerves of Steel [7 AGI]
Level 27 - Paralyzing Palm [70 Unarmed]		***
Level 28 - Ninja [80 Sneak 80 Melee]		***
Level 29 - Pyromaniac [60 Explosives]		***
Level 30 - Almost Perfect

The perks marked with *** can be obtained in any order to suit you, as
the only perk you should really aim to get as soon as possible is Nerves of
Steel at Level 26.

With the starting S.P.E.C.I.A.L stats the only attribute you need to worry
about increasing is Luck before level 17 so you can obtain Better Criticals. As
you can see though, a lot of the skill requirements are quite high early on.
That said, they can be made with ease as long as the skill points gained by
levelling are distributed properly and your exploration for skill books is neat

Though you start off slightly weaker and at a disadvantage because of this, by
the time your level reaches the mid-point, you should be more powerful as a

There are a handful of other perks that also provide you with beneficial
results when obtained through quest completion or dialogue options. These

Hematophage		Blood Packs heal 20 instead of 1.
Ant Might 		+1 STR, 25% Fire Resist
Wired Reflexes		+10% Accuracy in VATS
Power Armour		Lets you equip Power Armour
Barkskin		+5% Damage Resistance
Rad Regeneration	Extreme radiation poisoning heals crippled limbs
Survival Guru		+6% Poison, Damage and Radiation resistance

And extras from DLC include:

Covert Ops		+3 Science, Small Guns, Lockpick
Booster Shot		+10% Radiation Resistance
Pitt Fighter		+3% Radiation and Damage Resistance
Auto Expert		+25% Damage with Auto-Axes
Xenotech Expert		+25% Damage with Alien weapons
Punga Power		Reduced radiation from Punga fruit
Superior Defender	+5 Damage and +10 Damage Resistance when stationary
Ghoul Ecology		+5 Damage

Leaving you with a total of 44 obtained perks by the end of levelling, talking
and questing through both the story and DLCs available. Combined with all the
other improvements you'll gain from levelling, these really help to push you
into an untouchable state of existance.


[05] - Gameplay

The beginning of the game is going to be the trickiest to navigate. You're
under-powered, short on funds and low on everything else. There are a handful
of things you have to accomplish. These range from simply giving you a better
chance of success to being a necessary action to help you on your way.

- Growing up

Make sure your S.P.E.C.I.A.L stats are 6, 6, 6, 1, 9, 7, 5 and your G.O.A.T
bonuses are placed in Explosives, Lockpick and Science. It is also preferrable
to be a female character instead of male, since the Black Widow perk helps out
a lot more in giving you an edge.

- Escape Vault 101 without killing anyone

You'll exit the vault with enough experience to hit Level 2. With your skill
points you should make sure Repair is at least 30 to allow you to fix up the
leaking pipes in Megaton later. Getting Science to 40 is also preferred as you
won't have to worry about perk requirements until level 12.

- Get the Intelligence Bobblehead from Rivet City

You have to do this before you hit level 3. Pushing Intelligence to 10 will
give you 20 skill points per level from this moment on instead of 19. And do
not speak to Doctor Li either. As you should know, you'll jump about a third
of the storyline by doing so.

- Create a steady income of caps

Since you start off broke, building up some cash becomes a necessity. You can
sell the junk you find, but it is much more effecient to search for Pre-War
Books for Arlington Library and keeping all your scrap metal for Walter. As you
shouldn't need to spend a lot of money at the start of the game, it should soon
add up. Make sure to use quicksave and quickload for those hard speech checks
too, since the difference between 100 caps and 500 caps from Lucas Simms is
well worth a little time.

- Stay ahead of perk requirements

This means during the early game you'll have to put enough points in skills per
level to make sure you'll have the requirements for perks like Silent Running
and Cyborg. That said, you should also follow the points per skill limit given
above. Because of this you'll need to find relevant skill books to give you a
tiny nudge over the threshold.

- Focus on exploring over questing

There are a lot of locations over the world map. While it may seem tedious and
boring, simply questing to grind experience isn't going to help you much,
especially when the majority of locations not covered by quests contain skill
books and other items to help you along. I prefer to save quests for that last
boost of experience to the next level, especially if I am completely prepared
for the level up perks and skills.

- Operation Anchorage DLC

I recommend doing this whenever you are comfortable. The reason for it is that
the armour you recieve at the end, the Winterized T-51b Power Armour, is the
best in the game and you'll be using it for your entire journey. Not only does
it boost your Damage and Poison Resistance, but due to a mix-up, it has 10
million HP. You'll also automatically get the Power Armour Training perk to
wear it.

- Use the wiki

The fallout wiki has an obscene amount of information for you as well as a
section for notable loot on many if not all of the locations you're going to
explore. Not only does this help you isolate skill books, but it saves you time
in backtracking and allows you to plan ahead with quests that may need a bit
more effort to complete.

For example, getting the Damage Resistance from the Survival Guru perk from
Moira requires you to have high Strength and Endurance to give the 'Tough'
replies. Contracting advanaced radiation poisoning lowers your endurance by 3
which can be counteracted using +1 Endurance outfits and Buffout.

- Make use of clothing and items

As the game continues you are given access to items of clothing that increase
skills such as speech. Keeping these on you and switching to them for a check
will increase your chances of success, which again saves time. There are also
things that will increase stats, such as Timebomb's Lucky 8 Ball, which you
will need before level 17 for a perk prerequisite. Just remember to remove it
after, since you do not need it on you all the time and it can mess with the
Almost Perfect perk at your end game.


[06] - Legal and Contact

- Those in whole or part creation to Fallout 3: Game of the Year Edition


This may be not be reproduced under any circumstances except for
personal, private use. It may not be placed on any web site or
otherwise distributed publicly without advance written permission.
Use of this guide on any other web site or as a part of any public
display is strictly prohibited, and a violation of copyright.

Copyright 2012 - James Sharp


Contact: FrozenCascade@gmail.com


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