When stepping into the West Virginia wasteland for the first time, the sights and sounds can be overwhelming. With a massive map and tons of uncharted territory, it's difficult to decide where to start as a new player. Strap on your backpack, our vault-dwelling friend, and come learn a few tips and tricks that will help you survive the early hours of Fallout: 76.
Tips and tricks for new players in Fallout 76
12 - Pick up all the ammo you find
Ammo is a crucial resource for any firearm users in Fallout: 76. Although it can be located on deceased bodies, it is more frequently found in ammo boxes scattered around the map. If you stumble upon a few rounds of ammo, it's best to pick them up, especially in the early game. Even if you don't have a weapon that takes that ammo type, you can still sell it later. Since huge stacks of ammo typically weigh less than a pound, it doesn't hurt to stock up early.
11 - Join a public team that matches your playstyle
If you open up the Social menu on the map view, you can view all available public teams in your game session. These teams are created by players and offer free stat bonuses depending on how many members are in your team. There are public teams for all playstyles, including Casual, Exploration, Events, and even Roleplay. When your teammate completes a quest, it also rewards you with some free Caps, so there truly isn't a downside to joining a public team.
10 - Keep an eye on your food and drink meters
In the lower-right portion of your screen, you can view your food and drink levels. These meters must be consistently replenished, as having two full meters grants you 35 maximum HP, 70% disease resistance, 35% AP regeneration, STR +1, and END +1. If these levels deplete, these temporary buffs will be removed. To fill your food bar, you can eat items such as preserved snacks, cooked meat, and fruits, while water, Nuka-Cola, and tea will restore your hydration bar.
9 - Don't feel pressured to learn every mechanic at once
Fallout: 76 contains several optional mechanics, such as armor crafting, weapon modifications, cooking, and base building. It's easy to feel overwhelmed at the sheer number of activities you can do, but you can avoid this sensation by focusing on one mechanic at a time. For example, maybe you start with base building, taking time to familiarize yourself with structures and materials. After you feel confident with the building mechanics, you can move on to cooking, and so on.
8 - Save your Caps for player vendors
In Fallout: 76, the non-player vendors have inflated prices, which encourages the usage of player vendors. Each player can set up a vending machine, where they sell their wares at their desired price. Due to this freedom, you may stumble across some heavily discounted items, or some items at absurdly high prices. Although they can be hit-or-miss, player vendors are an excellent way to acquire rare items at a reasonable cost.
7 - Participate in Events, even if you're underleveled
Across the map, you can find hexagon-shaped Event icons. To join these Events, select their icon, pay the travel fee if necessary, and press Join Event, then you will be teleported to the Event location. Completing these Events will reward you with XP, the chance to obtain legendary items, and other beneficial items.
6 - Use V.A.T.S. to target hard-to-hit enemies
While hip-firing is effective against most enemies, some tricky hostiles move erratically. Creatures like Fireflies and Bloatflies dart across the screen, making it hard to target them with your crosshair. V.A.T.S. is a quick and easy way to eliminate enemies, removing the need for precise aim. If you're having trouble in combat, V.A.T.S. may be a helpful tool that can ease your frustration.
5 - Don't forget to repair your weapons and armor
Each of your weapons has a CND, or condition level. When this meter reaches 0, your weapon will break, and cannot be used until it is repaired. To avoid your weapon breaking in the middle of combat, be sure to keep an eye on its condition level, using Repair Kits to mend the damage. This concept applies for armor, as well.
4 - Claim free rewards from the Atomic Shop
Under the Featured section of the Atomic Shop, you can find a S.P.E.C.I.A.L. menu of items. This menu contains several free rewards you can claim, including a poster and a daily rotating item. This is a great way to acquire free Repair Kits, Scrap Kits, and Lunchboxes. Make sure to check up on the Atomic Shop each day you play so you can obtain resources and rewards for free.
Related: How to level up fast in Fallout 76
3 - When in need, visit The Wayward
The Wayward is one of the first locations you visit in the primary questline, but it never fails to be a safe haven. This bar and motel contains everything you need for early survival, such as fresh food, crafting stations, and a non-player vendor. Directly across the street from The Wayward, you can find an Overseer's cache with food and supplies. These resources respawn each day and are a helpful way to avoid starvation in your first few days.
2 - Traveling costs Caps, so be smart with your C.A.M.P. placement
Fallout: 76 introduces the concept of expensive travel, where fast traveling costs more Caps depending on the distance. While you're deciding where to set up your home base, make sure to keep this in mind. It's best to place your C.A.M.P. in a central area of the map, especially if you manage a vending machine, since players will not need to spend too many Caps to fast travel there.
1 - Make friends and stick together
Fallout: 76 is a game best enjoyed with friends. Whether you're bringing old friends with you, or seeking new friends, don't venture across the wasteland alone. This game's community is especially kind to newcomers, and seasoned veterans are always willing to lend a hand however they can. Even if you're typically a solo player, try visiting player camps and striking up a conversation. After all, this is the only Fallout game with multiplayer features, so don't forget to make the most of it.
For more Fallout guides, come check out Does Fallout 76 support cross-play? here on Pro Game Guides.