Fallout New Vegas innovates on the systems of its predecessor Fallout 3 by taking the perks system and reshaping it into something unique but familiar. Old fans of the Fallout games will be greeted with a sense of nostalgia and be pleased with how much they can do in this game. Meanwhile, new players are presented with a vast skill tree system that is easy to engage with and immerses them. However, not all perks are made equal and in this list, you will see some that are definitely more useful than others either at the beginning of the game or near the end or sometimes all throughout your journey.
Table of Contents
Strong Back/Burden To Bear are the best perks in Fallout New Vegas, increasing carry capacity and allowing the player to be the hoarder they were meant to be. Strong Back requires the player to be Level 8 and have 5 Strength as base requirements, while Burden to bear requires the player to be Level 30, and have 6 Strength and 6 Endurance.
Cannibal allows the player to eat corpses to regenerate health in a post-apocalyptic world. The only requirement for this perk is that the player is Level 4.
Black Widow/Lady Killer is the best-starting perk in Fallout New Vegas, granting 10% more damage to the opposite gender and unique dialogue options. The only requirement for these perks is to be Level 2.
The Them’s Good Eatin perk requires Level 20 and a Survival Skill of 55 and is valuable if the player is short on caps.
The Mysterious Stranger perk is a tradition in Fallout games and is activated when in VATS. It is a 10% chance that a mysterious stranger will appear and fire 6 shots at the targeted enemy, requiring player Level 10 and 6 Luck.
Rad Resistance provides an additional 25% rad resistance on top of the player’s previous resistance, making them almost invincible to rads. It requires Level 8 alongside 5 Endurance and 40 Survival Skill.
The explorer perk marks every location on the player’s map, making it a great quality-of-life perk. Explorer only requires Level 20 with no additional requirements.
Light Step is a helpful perk for stealth-based playstyles/builds, requiring Level 14, 6 Perception, and 6 Agility.
The Implant GRX perk mimics Turbo’s effect of slowing down the perception of time in Fallout games, making it great for sniping with Slowed Time. This requires Level 30 and 8 Endurance.
Jury Rigging is a utility-based perk with both short and long-term benefits, making it one of the best perks in Fallout New Vegas. It requires Level 14 and a Repair Skill of 90.
Best Perks Fallout New Vegas
Strong Back/Burden To Bear
On your journey across the wasteland, you will find an abundance of treasure and trash and with this game being an RPG you will surely want to fill your character’s pockets to the brim. But sadly the game has a carry limit, stopping you from achieving your dream of collecting every object in-game and satisfying that itch to 100% this game. Thankfully, the developers realized this and added a few perks to help you achieve this goal. In comes Strong Back, and in the same sense Burden To Bear. These perks especially increase your carry capacity in-game, allowing you the player to truly be the hoarder you were meant to be in this virtual world. These perks, although acting the same, have different requirements to be used.
Strong Back requires the player to be Level 8 and have 5 Strength as base requirements, whilst Burden to bear requires the player to be Level 30, have 6 Strength and 6 Endurance. Due to their benefits, they can be called the best perks in Fallout New Vegas.
Surviving in a post-apocalyptic world isn’t easy or as fun, one would think. It’s actually rather depressing with everyone around you sad all the time at the thought of the old world being no more but fear not, for survival is nought but a cakewalk when you don’t have an issue with eating anything. Some people are picky about what they eat and this holds them back but what if you could eat anything, and we mean anything that has some meat on its bones. Then this perk is exactly what you need. It’s exactly what it sounds like. Cannibal allows the player to eat corpses to regenerate health. In a game where health is scarce and food even more, this perk comes in handy often when traveling for long periods of time or in the middle of a fight.
The only requirement for this perk is that the player is Level 4. It is important to know that when caught using this perk, friendly NPCs will turn hostile, negatively affecting karma. Karma is a system carried over from the previous fallout games and has become synonymous with the Fallout series with missions such as “Power of the Atom” in Fallout 3.
When we think of charm and wit we think of sophisticated characters like James Bond or Selena Kyle. So what is stopping you, the player, from achieving this level of suave for their character, in the eyes of Fallout New Vegas simply one perk is holding you back from becoming the resident smooth criminal. That perk is either Lady Killer or Black Widow. Each of these perks has the same effects but are applied differently based on the gender of the courier you pick at the start of the game. Black Widow applies to female couriers and Lady Killer to male couriers.
The effect of these perks is 10% more damage to the opposite gender and includes unique dialogue options with them. The only requirement for these perks is to be Level 2. These can be called the best two perks to start with in Fallout New Vegas as they allow you to unlock interesting routes in the early game with the help of dialogue alone.
Them’s Good Eatin
Now the Fallout series has no shortage of bizarre creatures with wacky designs and concepts such as the Giant Cazador or the mundane Radroach all the way to the two-headed Brahmins. And there has always been the question of why do these enemies that live in the outskirts of the wasteland drop bottlecaps and ammo when killed. Well, now we add more that question in Fallout New Vegas with sausages made of blood and red paste that heals you with just one perk. This perk, in particular, is called Them’s Good Eatin. This is building upon Cannibal on this list as this perk also focuses on healing but without the karma backlash to the player. It allows living enemies a 50% chance to drop healing items, including Blood Sausage and Thin Red Paste.
This requires the player to be Level 20 and have a Survival Skill of 55. This perk comes to shine when the player does not have abundant healing items on them or lots of carrying weight to spare. It is also valuable if the player is short on caps and can sell these for a decent price of 175 caps for Blood Sausage and 125 caps for Thin Red Paste. This is one of the best ways to passively farm bottlecaps in Fallout New Vegas.
When your down to your last bullet in your favourite gun and the deathclaw in front of you is so close to death, you activate VATS to buy yourself some time to think of how to get out of this pickle but nothing comes to mind. So you fire your last shot aimed at the head of the creature and then suddenly you hear 6 shots being fired at the enemy. It falls to the ground and a lonesome guitar plays in the distance. You have just been saved by the Mysterious Stranger. That is the situation most of us will find ourselves in and be rescued from with newfound respect in our hearts for our guardian angel.
A tradition in Fallout games this perk is activated when in VATS. There is a 10% chance that when the player is in VATS the mysterious stranger will appear and fire 6 shots at the targeted enemy. Requirements for this perk are player Level 10 and 6 Luck. It may seem useless to those who have not been saved by the starter but for those who have, they know that the stranger shows up when it counts the most and always pick up this perk.
In a post-apocalyptic world ravaged by nuclear warfare and literal radioactive mutants at every turn, it couldn’t hurt to not have some immunity to them right? If that’s what you thought then you’re absolutely right and we have just the perk for you. Introducing Rad Resistance. It does exactly what the name of the perk implies.
It provides the player with an additional 25% rad resistance on top of whatever resistance they had beforehand. So if that horde of Radroach is giving you annoying rad damage then take perk and fell almost invincible to rads.
It requires Level 8 alongside 5 Endurance and 40 Survival Skill. This is quite useful in situations where you need to explore highly irradiated areas or when fighting droves of radioactive ghouls. Combine this with perk with power armour and let that radiation try to affect you, it can’t due to your now insanely tough resistances.
Now that you have decided to start this journey you see that the world of New Vegas is vast in scope and density. It’s populated with interesting characters filled to the brim with personality. Some people love to explore blindly and find amazing sights while some just don’t want to commit time to roam around a large map aimlessly in hopes to find something.
Well in comes the Explorer perk. This perk marks every location on the player’s map. It is very straightforward but it is quite useful for those who don’t wish to waste their time or for those who wish to make sure they haven’t missed a single sight in the game.
Explorer only requires Level 20 with no additional requirements. That makes this a very good quality of life perk for any player who so desires it.
When playing a game like Fallout you always have the stealth mechanic at your disposal and it would be criminal not to use this ability to its full advantage. similarly, it’s not very fun to stealth around every corner to be wary of traps and Light Step eliminates that need. It essentially allows the player to not set off mines and tripwire traps.
Very good for a stealth-based playstyle/build and almost essential for Sierra Madre in the game if you don’t want to spend 90% of your time in VATS checking for traps.
The requirements are Level 14, 6 Perception and 6 Agility. This is not a very flashy perk with many different effects but rather a more subtle and helpful perk for, as previously mentioned, stealth-based playstyles/builds.
Do you like to use chems in Fallout games? Do you hate the fact that you get addicted to them WAY too easily? Well, now we have the solution for you in the form of the Implant GRX perk. This perk mimics the effect of Turbo, a chem that slows down the perception of time in the game for the player. That’s all the utility it offers but it’s great if you like the feeling of being almost untouchable by other humans in the game.
This requires Level 30 and 8 Endurance. When using this perk the player is limited to a few uses per in-game day but it has some great positives when we consider the alternative of just abusing some Turbo.
With the effects, it provides in the hands of the right player this can be utilised to its maximum capabilities and be considered as one of the best perks in Fallout New Vegas.
Every gamer knows the pain that is weapon durability and sadly we aren’t exempt from this in Fallout New Vegas. Each weapon or armour piece we find eventually starts to wear down and has to be repaired by a vendor for caps or by combining two of the same item.
That is where this perk finds its time to shine. Jury Rigging is a highly utility-based perk with both short and long term benefits. This perk allows the player to repair weapons and gear with other similarly tiered weapons and gear.
It requires Level 14 and a Repair Skill of 90. This perk is very useful for repairing rare items with much cheaper and common items that the player does not mind expending which also saves the player’s caps. Judging by how useful this is we can lay claim that this is one of the best perks in Fallout New Vegas.