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How to build characters in Fallout 76 - Best Builds included

How to build characters in Fallout 76 - Best Builds included

Check out our guide to character builds in Fallout 76. The Best FO76 Builds are included

The Best Builds for Fallout 76
And a guide on how to build characters

General information

Fallout 76 is the newest installment of the popular Fallout series and its' first multiplayer version. Fallout 76 introduced a unique character leveling and optimization system. Players can distribute attribute points to Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility and Luck and use SPECIAL Perk Cards for additional bonuses. 

  1. Players start with one point in each of the SPECIAL attributes
  2. Players gain one point every level up to level 50. This sums up to a total of 56 points on your character
  3. Each SPECIAL attribute can be increased by up to 15, and further buffed only by Chems and Food
  4. There is currently no way to reassign SPECIAL attributes
  5. Each point assigned to a SPECIAL attribute allows you to use a single-rank Perk Card from the corresponding category. In order to use rank 2, 3, and higher Perk Cards you need 2, 3, or more SPECIAL Attributes assigned
  6. The number of Perk Cards under each attribute is unlimited. You can freely choose to use two rank3 Perk Cards or six rank 1 Perk Cards and so on
  7. Players gain random Perk Cards in Packs after they reach level 4, 6, 8, 10 and then, after every 5 levels
  8. After each level, you get to choose one Perk Card from the available Cards in your "Deck" which now becomes available for allocation on your character sheet
  9. The so-called "Deck" consists of Perks that you have found in Packs during your adventure. Perks in your Deck are permanent except for Perks that have a maximum rank of 1 (you can only pick them up once)
  10. You can choose a Perk Card of any type, regardless of the SPECIAL attribute that you chose to increase this level. For example, if you decide to increase your Strength, you can still switch and select Perks from other categories
  11. You can freely switch Perk Cards allowing you to easily respec your character

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The main character build types in Fallout 76

Fallout 76 Tank Build

As a Tank, your main role is to take all the damage your party members would normally take. Tanks primarily focus on Strength, Intelligence, and Luck SPECIAL attributes. With high Armor and defenses, you should be able to absorb bullets like a sponge.
Becoming a real Tank in Fallout 76 will require a Power Armor, which makes this build unsuited for characters below level 30.
Tanks can be played with a wide variety of weapons. Most Popular choices are: Heavy Guns (powerful, but extremely costly in terms of ammo) and Melee Weapons (my personal preference)
You can nearly entirely skip Perception and Endurance attributes, as you won't need more than one or maybe two Perks in them depending on your build. Your main goal is to get in close range and focus enemy fire on yourself making VATS redundant for most of Tank builds. While Tanks are not exactly talkative, Charisma is extremely important in Fallout 76, and you should remember to spend at least a couple of points on it on Perks like Bodyguard, Suppressor.

Priorities as a Tank:

  1. Power Armor
  2. Strength
  3. Intelligence
  4. Luck

Major Perks:

  1. Blocker (reduced Melee damage taken)
  2. Bullet Shield (damage reduction while firing a Heavy Gun)
  3. Strong Back (more carry weight)
  4. Traveling Pharmacy (Chems and Stimpacks weigh less)
  5. Chem Fiend (Chems last longer)
  6. Bodyguards (damage reduction for each party member)
  7. Magnetic Personality (increases Charisma while in a team allowing more Charisma Perks to be taken "for free")
  8. Suppressor (reduces your target's damage)
  9. Power Patcher (Power Armor breaks slower)
  10. Power User (more Fusion Core duration)
  11. Stabilized (Heavy Guns gain more accuracy and ignore enemy armor while in Power Armor)
  12. Action Boy (faster AP regeneration)
  13. Dodgy (damage mitigation)
  14. One Gun Armory (increases the chance to stagger and cripple a limb with Heavy Weapons)

Our recommended Tank builds:

  1. The Unstoppable Melee Tank build
  2. Power Armored Heavy Gunner Tank build
  3. Highly Explosive Tank build
Fallout 76 Rifleman

Most versatile, and presumably the most popular type of builds in Fallout 76. Depending on your personal preferences you can use a Power Armor or regular lighter equipment that makes you much faster and agile. Same goes for the Weapons, you can pretty much pick anything from Guns, Laser Guns, Rifles, Shotguns and so on. The core stats will mostly remain the same regardless of your choices in the manner, and you only have to adjust specific Perks according to your preferred items. DPS-wise, it's also one of the most powerful builds in Fallout 76. Because of high damage, good defenses, speed, and maneuverability, it's one of the most enjoyable builds to play. Rifleman/Gunslinger usually utilizes the V.A.T.S and high Critical Hit chance.

Priorities as a Rifleman/Gunslinger:

  1. Perception
  2. Agility
  3. Luck

Major Perks:

  1. Blocker (reduce Melee damage taken)
  2. Concentrated Fire (higher accuracy and damage with V.A.T.S)
  3. Gunsmith (Guns break slower)
  4. Action Boy (faster AP regeneration)
  5. Adrenaline (each consecutive kill increases your damage)
  6. Evasive (Agility increases your damage reduction and DPS)
  7. Gun Fu (increases damage to consecutive targets in V.A.T.S)
  8. Better Criticals (increases Critical damage in V.A.T.S)
  9. Critical Savy (Crits consume less of the critical meter)
  10. Quick Hands (grants a chance to instantly reload your clip when empty)

Our recommended Gunslinger/Rifleman builds:

  1. Crit. V.A.T.S. Rifleman (w/o Power Armor)
  2. Universal Soldier Ranger build (Power Armor)
  3. Solo DPS Commando build (both w. PA and w/o PA)
Fallout 76 Medic

Medic is solely a support class that may underperform when playing solo. The Medic can sustain heavy damage to themselves, and at the same time provide amazing team utility via healing, damage reduction, and reviving teammates. 

Priorities as a Medic:

  1. Charisma
  2. Intelligence
  3. Luck

Major Perks:

  1. Blocker (reduce Melee damage taken)
  2. Anti-Epidemic (makes you cure diseases of nearby teammates)
  3. Bodyguards (increases damage reduction for each teammate)
  4. E.M.T (players you revive have increased health regen.)
  5. Magnetic Personality (increases your maximum Charisma when in a team)
  6. Philanthropist (allows you to restore teammates thirst and hunger)
  7. Team Medic (allows you to heal nearby teammates when using Stimpacks)
  8. First Aid (increases healing done by Stimpacks)
  9. Power Patcher (Power Armors break much slower)
  10. Suppressor (reduces the damage dealt by enemies hit by you)
  11. Tenderizer (enemies you hit take increased damage)

Our recommended Medic builds:

  1. Combat Medic co-op build
  2. Heavy Gunner Medic build - one of the best support characters in Fallout 76 with unparalleled healing, team utility and great sustained DPS 

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Fallout 76 Melee

Melee build type is one of the most powerful in Fallout 76. With the, yet to be fixed, issues with V.A.T.S and targeting, Melee weapons seem to be the most reliable choice. You can play a melee character in two different ways. One of them is a semi-Tanky and slow character, wearing Power Armor and maximizing DPS dealt with powerful Two-Handed Weapons (Super Sledge and such) to hit extremely hard. You can also utilize the Pain Train Perk for very interesting results.

The other version focuses on speed and Agility. I suggest using fast One-Handed Weapons (swords, knives etc.) in this version. It offers much smoother playstyle and is extremely versatile. This is one of our top recommendations for solo players.

Melee builds heavily rely on Strength and Agility attributes. You can nearly entirely skip Perception and Charisma attributes.

Priorities as a Medic:

  1. Strength
  2. Agility
  3. Luck

Major Perks:

  1. Blocker (reduces melee damage taken)
  2. Martial Artist (melee weapons weigh less and you swing them faster)
  3. Incisor (weapons ignore a percentage of enemy armor)
  4. Makeshift Warrior (melee weapons break slower)
  5. Action Boy (increased AP regen)
  6. Adrenaline (increased damage after killing enemies)
  7. Dodgy (reduced damage at the cost of AP)
  8. Evasive (reduced damage for each point of Agility)
  9. Bloody Mess (increased damage and extra gore)
  10. Serenpidity (chance to avoid damage while on low life)

Our recommended Melee builds:

  1. 2H Team Melee build (Power Armor) 
  2. 1H Melee Cutthroat build (PvE/PvP, no Power Armor)
  3. Melee Gladiator Solo build (no Power Armor)
Fallout 76 Unarmed

A specific type of Melee builds that are using your fists or Fist Weapons as primary weapons. This type of character utilizes Melee and defensive Perks and cannot use a Power Armor. While this build is fully viable in Fallout 76, it's mainly recommended for role players and hardcore gamers as it is a bit more challenging. Unarmed build utilizes Strength, Agility, and Luck. Also if you manage to get the Talons mutation, it will greatly increase your Unarmed damage. 

Assuming, we can get any improvements to the PvP system, this might be the best build to troll other players. Who wouldn't want to pummel down a guy wearing a Power Armor with Boxing Gloves or a pair of knuckles?

Priorities as an Unarmed:

  1. Strength
  2. Agility
  3. Luck

Major Perks:

  1. Blocker (reduces melee damage taken)
  2. Barbarian (damage reduction for each allocated point of Strength)
  3. Martial Artist (melee weapons weigh less and you attack faster)
  4. Incisor (weapons ignore a percentage of enemy armor)
  5. Iron Fist (increases punching damage)
  6. Ironclad (reduces damage taken while not wearing Power Armor)
  7. Makeshift Warrior (melee weapons break slower)
  8. Action Boy (increased AP regen)
  9. Marathoner (sprinting cost less AP)
  10. Bloody Mess (increased damage and extra gore)
  11. Moving Target (reduced damage taken while sprinting)
  12. Nerd Rage (increased damage, reduced damage taken, and increased AP regen while on low life)
  13. Serenpidity (chance to avoid damage while on low life)

Our recommended Unarmed builds:

  1. Versatile Unarmed build (w/o Power Armor)
  2. Cannibal Pugilist build
Fallout 76 Engineer

This is a specific group of niche builds. The primary focus is on increasing Caps earned and farmed while playing more or less a supporting role. This type of characters can be played by players that seek to maximize their income from crafting, looting and trading, or by true role players.

The main focus in this build is to maximize the number of loot you find during your adventure, carry weight, specialize in at least one form of crafting. You should also try to play a supporting role in a team as the solo capabilities of a Looter are rather mediocre. You can do so by supplying your teammates with ammunition, and adding points into Lockpick or Hacking. Looter/Engineer should use a Power Armor, because of the significant increase in carrying weight.

This build mainly focuses on Strength and Intelligence attributes. Because of that, it's recommended to use Melee Weapons, since Strength will grant reasonable DPS increase regardless of your Perks. At the same time, it will allow you to save ammo.

As a Looter/Engineer, you should have a lot of crafting materials so you can also focus on building and expanding your camp. Camp production can be another efficient source of income.

Priorities as a Looter:

  1. Strength
  2. Intelligence
  3. Charisma

Major Perks:

  1. Bandolier (reduces the weight of ballistic ammo)
  2. Blocker (reduces melee damage taken)
  3. Martial Artist (you swing your melee weapons faster and they weigh less)
  4. Pack Rat (reduces the weight of all junk items)
  5. Strong Back (increases carry weight)
  6. Traveling Pharmacy (reduces the weight of all Chems)
  7. Hard Bargain (better prices when trading)
  8. Magnetic Personality (increased Charisma for each party member)
  9. Contractor (crafting workshop items cost less)
  10. Ammosmith (increases the amount of produced ammo)
  11. Super Duper (grants a chance to get double results when crafting)

Our recommended Looter/Engineer builds:

  1. Looter/Crafter Build (solo gunslinger version)
Fallout 76 Explosive Guns

Demolitionist, Explosives Expert, or anything else you want to call it, is a type of character that specializes in making stuff explode. This is a niche build and mainly picked by roleplayers or for fun. 

This build has a lot of variations, and all Perks in this build are scattered around all the attributes. If you prefer Heavy Guns, you will focus Strength, Grenadiers will require more Perception, and Demolition Expert Perk which increases the damage of your explosives by 100% is under the Intelligence attribute.

Priorities as Demolitionist:

  1. Strength
  2. Perception
  3. Intelligence
  4. Luck

Major Perks:

  1. Blocker (one of the best defensive Perks in the game regardless of the build)
  2. Grenadier (Your explosives detonate with a larger radius)
  3. Demolition Expert (increases the damage of your explosives by up to 100%)
  4. Bloody Mess (increases your damage and matches this builds theme)
  5. Adrenaline (increases your damage for each consecutive kill)

Our recommended Sniper builds:

  1. Grenadier/Shotgunner Solo build (w/o Power Armor)
  2. "Furious Charge" Rhinoceros Power Armor build - the use of Explosive Weapons in this build is optional, but regardless of your weapon choices, this is a true Demolitionist
Fallout 76 Sniper

Sniper is a specific type of Rifleman build that utilizes scope and very high-range weapons. Your goal is to benefit from Sneak bonus damage and take down enemies from a secure spot.

This build utilizes Perception and Agility SPECIAL attributes that will increase your accuracy and damage. 

In order to efficiently play in closed areas, you should also use an automatic rifle. Most of the Perks will work for both rifle types, and if that's not enough you can always pick additional Perk that will enhance your damage with automatic rifles as well. 

Priorities as a Sniper:

  1. Perception
  2. Agility
  3. Luck

Major Perks:

  1. Blocker (reduces melee damage taken)
  2. Rifleman/Expert Rifleman/Master Rifleman (increases the damage of non-automatic rifles)
  3. Sniper (increase your accuracy when using a Scope)
  4. Tank Killer (your rifles ignore a percentage of enemy armor and have higher chance to stagger)
  5. Ironclad (grant damage and energy resistance while not wearing a power armor)
  6. Covert Operative (increase the Sneak bonus damage)
  7. Evasive (increase your damage and energy resistance when not wearing a Power Armor)
  8. Marathoner (reduces AP cost of sprinting)
  9. Sneak (makes you less likely to be seen while sneaking)

Our recommended Sniper builds:

  1. Solo Sniper Build (self-aim)

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If you have any suggestions related to this article or you know different build types that should be included in this article, let us know in the comments below.

Pictures used in this article are the intellectual property of Bethseda Softworks LLC.