In Fallout 76, players will be able to work together to survive the post-apocalypse, but who could thrive in this dangerous new wasteland better than characters from previous Fallouts? Fallout 4 alone had 14 companions, but we’ve whittled the series’ huge roster of ghouls, mutants, robots, and hardened survivalists down to a dream co-op team made from the best, and toughest, of the bunch.
Craig Boone (Fallout: New Vegas)
Boone’s an easy first pick. He can be found in New Vegas’ Nevada wasteland, spending his days holding grudges and protecting the ramshackle settlement of Novac from atop an adorable dinosaur statue. With its goofy grin and the gift shop in its belly, it’s the last place you’d expect to find a sniper’s nest.
He’s a hard man, toughened up by his past life as a member of 1st Recon, the New California Republic’s elite reconnaissance unit. He’s seen some extremely grim stuff that continues to haunt him, but his time in the unit also trained him to be a great sniper. When players come across him, his wife has been kidnapped by Caesar’s Legion, and not surprisingly, Boone’s not a big fan of them.
What he lacks in a sunny disposition, he more than makes up for in general badassery. He wields a special scoped hunting rifle, taking out enemies before they can reach his pals, and his high guns skill makes him a great ranged companion. He also provides the extremely handy Spotter perk, highlighting enemies whenever the player aims. This makes him great at supporting other snipers, too. More important than any of that, however, is his fetching red beret, which fashion-conscious Boone pairs expertly with a nice pair of aviators. Even in the post-apocalypse, there’s room for style.
Since Fallout 76’s map is four times larger than Fallout 4’s, having a sniper in tow could only be an advantage. The Hunter/Hunted assassination missions also sound like just the sort of things Boone would excel at. They can be activated from the Pip-Boy, giving you a player to hunt down while making you a target of another assassin.
Curie (Fallout 4)
Nick Valentine, Fallout 4’s synthetic gumshoe, might get all the attention, but Curie’s the Commonwealth’s best robotic companion. It’s steep competition, too, what with the veritable army of machines that can be created with the Automatron DLC, and let’s not forget about good old Codsworth. But Curie beats them all.
A modified Miss Nanny robot and brilliant scientist, Curie can be found stuck in a secret part of Vault 81, eager to explore the world after centuries trapped underground with only radioactive molerats for company. Even regular molerats make terrible friends.
Curie’s high intelligence and medical skills make her a lifesaver. Thanks to her big robot brain, she comes up with an upgrade for stimpacks, increasing their effectiveness. She also gives players the Combat Medic perk, which heals 100 hit points every day. In Fallout 76’s radioactive PvP wasteland, a good medic will be worth their weight in caps.
Being a scientist doesn’t mean that Curie’s a slouch when it comes to fighting. As a Miss Nanny robot, she’s tough and well-armed, and she can be customised and enhanced with all sorts of fancy new components and weaponry. She can also be upgraded to a new Synth body, allowing her to start wearing armour, just like human companions, transforming her into a tank. A tank that can speak French and heal everyone.
Fawkes (Fallout 3)
Super mutants make up some of Fallout’s toughest enemies, but across the series they’ve also made excellent allies, like Fallout 2’s Marcus, the sheriff of Broken Hills, who also crops up in New Vegas, and the Macbeth-quoting, milk-obsessed Strong from Fallout 4. None of them are as tough as Fawkes, Fallout 3’s smart and deadly behemoth.
Fawkes was the victim of yet another Vault-Tec experiment, this one studying the effects of the Forced Evolutionary Virus - the source of Super Mutants. His brain wasn’t ravaged like other Super Mutants, however, so when he’s discovered stuck in a cell in Vault 87, he’s both chattier and saner than most of the DC Wasteland’s monsters. But it’s not his intellect that we’re interested in.
Even for a Super Mutant, Fawkes can both dole out and take a significant bruising, and there isn’t a weapon under the sun that he’s not proficient with. Any party with someone like Fawkes backing them up isn’t going to have too many problems in Fallout 76. All those big, green muscles also come in handy for lugging around lots of junk, so if you’re moving house, Fawkes is the pal you’d want to help you out.
Like all of his kind, he can also shrug off radiation - he eats rads for breakfast. This would undoubtedly come in extremely handy in Fallout 76, where players can drop their own devastating nukes, temporarily turning areas into challenging zones full of monsters, loot and plenty of radiation.
Dogmeat (Fallout - Fallout 4)
Dogmeat really should just be a compulsory companion. Almost every Fallout since the original has featured a loyal pooch bearing the name, and they’re as Fallout as Vault Boy, caps and radiation. Given the length of time between the games, they’re definitely all different dogs, though we might be dealing with a Doctor Who or Avatar situation. The latest in a long line of Dogmeats can be found sniffing around a Red Rocket truck stop in Fallout 4.
Despite not having the opposable thumbs required to wield weapons, Dogmeat’s really handy in a scrap. Not only does his bite sting, he can use it to immobilise enemies, which is perfect for lining up headshots or just getting a few free punches. And while he might not be able to use the wide range of weapons and gear other companions can, he’s still able to wear doggy armour and very cool goggles.
Being a dog, he’s blessed with high agility and perception, while his nose makes him a great tracker. He’s even able to find items, bringing them back to his owner. Fallout 76’s crafting would go pretty smoothly if Dogmeat could go out and get everything. No other companion is quite as helpful, or as consistently upbeat. No matter how gloomy things are, Dogmeat’s always up for doing some tricks or playing fetch.
We know he’s already a veteran survivor, so Fallout 76 would be a walk in the park. Before meeting up with the protagonist in Fallout 4, he’d been helping out Preston Garvey and his band of settlers, and he’d even been working with Nick Valentine on some cases. He’s so resourceful, he probably wouldn’t even need a group.
Before you head into the beta, make sure to check out our 16 essential Fallout 76 tips to know before you play.