Fallout as a series has always been about putting the player in the shoes of a protagonist who has a huge challenge set before them. The player has the opportunity to take the blank canvas that is the player-character, build a role within the wasteland that is suitable for them, and then tell their own story from there.
However, when you put the role of the protagonist to one side for a moment, you begin to see that there are so many deep and interesting characters within this post-apocalyptic universe and perhaps the most well-written and interesting of all of these characters are the companions that the player encounters on their travels.
The retro isometric RPGs did a great job back in the day by offering a batch of quirky followers for the player, and when Bethesda Game Studios picked up the series in the late 2000s, they attempted to keep this tradition going.
We have to admit, though, Fallout 3 was a bit of a letdown in this respect. The player was able to wander the wastes with Dogmeat, which was nice, and Fawkes was also a fun and formidable character. However, as a collective, the companion system in FO3 was rather hollow.
Thankfully though, Fallout New Vegas, with Obsidian Entertainment at the helm, managed to resurrect the companion format and provided a wealth of excellent followers for The Courier to enlist the services of, each with their own unique backstory, quests, perks, and more. It was a great way to shake things up and really felt like a modern take on the isometric RPGs of old.
However, you may be working your way through Fallout NV and wondering who all of these companions are, where they reside in this vast wasteland, and why you should even bother putting the time in to get to know them.
Well, we want to give you an extensive rundown on each of these wonderful characters and give you all the info you need to make an informed decision on who you should wander the Mojave Wasteland with.
So without further delay, here is our comprehensive Fallout NV Companion guide.
How Do Companions Work in FNV?
Before we get into the various companions that one can find and recruit in FNV, we should probably give you a rundown on how the companion system works in Fallout New Vegas. Unlike FO3, New Vegas offers a much more fleshed-out system that requires players to get to know their comrades and also offers different companions which will suit varying playstyles. Check it out below:
Each companion in Fallout New Vegas has at least one unique quest that the player will have to unlock through getting closer to their new acquaintance; plus, a lot of these companions will only join you on your quest if you complete a recruitment quest beforehand.
For example, Craig Boone won’t consider leaving Novac until you find his target and put them before the Dino gift shop. These quests tend to be some of the most intriguing of all included in FNV, so they are well worth pursuing.
Speaking of the quests that the player can unlock by hanging around with these companion characters, you may be wondering how you actually unlock these. Well, the simple answer is that you have to improve the relationships between you and the companion in question.
This is dictated by how many relationship points that the player acquires with said companion. These are usually earned by traveling to specific locations or completing certain tasks.
These tend to lead to unique dialogue options which give hints of the quests that will eventually follow. To offer an example, one of Arcade Gannon’s points can be earned by traveling to the Crashed Vertibird due to his links to the Enclave.
It is also worth noting that you can also dismantle relationships fairly quickly in this game too. A lot of the companions have ties to the factions which occupy New Vegas, and therefore, if you do anything to agitate them, then chances are that this will have the same effect on your new pal. For example, if you blow up the Hidden Valley bunker, don’t expect Veronica to keep following you around and be your buddy.
Skills and Perks
Then to close off this segment, we need to talk about the perks that companions offer to the player. Each companion has a set skill that will be active so long as the player is traveling with that companion.
So if you travel with Boone, for example, he has a handy perk that highlights enemies in a red overlay, making it easier for you to spot and pick them off from a distance.
As he is a sniper by trade, this contextually makes sense, and the other companion perks are very much the same. Also, if you complete the companion’s quests and do unique tasks involving them, you may gain access to additional perks.
Why Should I Recruit a Companion in FNV?
So now you understand how the companion system works in this game, but you may still be asking yourself why you should go out of your way to bring along other characters on your adventure. After all, in later games like Fallout 4, you can take perks like the Lone Wanderer perk and literally be rewarded for braving the wastes alone.
However, in FNV, there isn’t an equivalent and honestly, having a companion that you can trust and work well with in the Mojave can be vital to survival and success. You may be scratching your head as to why, as your guns seem plenty powerful. Well, here is the skinny:
First and foremost, a companion changes the dynamic in a combat situation. No longer are you expected to be a one-man army. Instead, you will be able to recruit a companion that will fight alongside you to defeat your foes. You can mix it up, bringing along each of these companions until you find one that is right for you.
You might like fighters that get up close and personal while you fire shots from range, which is something that Veronica and Lily can offer. You might like the inverse of this as you are a melee character, which makes Boone is a very good option. Or you may like the covering fire that companions like E-DE can offer. What we are saying here is that there are a lot of options, and one is bound to suit your style of play.
It is also worth mentioning that players will be granted additional combat buffs and perks when their companions are around, which is always a welcome bonus. Then as well as this, players can also use a companion wheel that allows them to control the character AI and adjust their approach to battle, which makes each encounter more of a tactical experience.
When we say convenience, we are mainly referring to one thing, and that is carry capacity. Have you ever been wandering the wastes alone and encountered a very valuable but very heavy piece of equipment?
We can only assume that you spent the next ten minutes reluctantly dumping items out of your inventory or decided to leave the lovely item where it lay.
Well, if you had a companion by your side, then this wouldn’t be an issue at all. All companions are capable of lugging your gear around for you, effectively almost doubling your carry capacity and allowing you to accumulate more loot, and who doesn’t love that?
Then lastly, if you are able to recruit all of the companions in the game, there is an achievement that is linked to this feat. The achievement is called ‘The Whole Gang’s Here’ and requires the player to have access to all companions in the game.
So, when you get one to join you, don’t stick with just one follower for the whole game. Send some back to the Lucky 38, and make sure you collect them all.
Who Are The Fallout New Vegas Companions?
Okay, I think we have explained the companion system pretty well and hopefully sold the concept of sharing your journey with another character.
So now, it is time to run through the various companions that the player can recruit in Fallout New Vegas. Check it out below!
- Initial Location: Novac
- Affiliation: NCR
- Related Quests: One for my Baby, I Forgot to Remember to Forget
- Weapon of Choice: Scoped Hunting Rifle
If the player is following the path set by the main story, the chances are that the first character companion you will come across will be Craig Boone, a former NCR First Recon sniper who has retired to the town of Novac serving as a night watchman. Boone is a very somber and serious character who doesn’t trust easily and has a very troubled past.
His wife Carla was sold to the Legion as a slave, and he is haunted daily by the nightmarish situation that she must endure. Boone is a sureshot with his scoped Hunting Rifle and is one of the best options for the player if they want a military-trained combatant on their side.
In terms of this character’s main quests, the player will have to solve a mystery of sorts within the town of Novac, sourcing information and trying to find out whether there was foul play regarding Boone’s wife Carla and her recent disappearance.
Then later, the player will help Boone deal with his psychological trauma, both with the massacre at Bitter Springs and the loss of his wife, by fighting alongside him and repelling waves of Legion attackers.
Boone also has a perk called ‘Spotter,’ which highlights all enemies with a red overlay when aiming down sights.
Overall, Boone is a great companion to get to know, and once you break through his tough outer shell and his military persona, you’ll find the man that Carla grew to love underneath.
- Initial Location: 188 Trading Post
- Affiliation: Brotherhood of Steel
- Related Quests: I Could Make You Care, You Make Me Feel Like a Woman
- Weapon of Choice: Veronica’s Power Fist
Next up, we have the Brotherhood of Steel Scribe that packs one hell of a punch, Veronica Santangelo. Veronica is one of the most interesting and progressive members of the Brotherhood of Steel that you are likely to ever meet. In fact, when the player happens upon them, she is on the cusp of exile for her ideals that clash with the regimented nature of the Brotherhood.
She is a loyal Brotherhood member and only wants the best for the Hidden Valley chapter and the faction as a whole, but equally, she will do all in her power to change their minds and alter their course for the better.
She wanders the Mojave, talking to other groups and travelers in search of a new ideal that she can use to rescue her brothers and ultimately return home.
Veronica is also one of two companions that have links to characters within the DLC content, more specifically Elijah and Christine Royce. Veronica is also a bisexual character and, during her time in The Circle, had a same-sex relationship with Christine, one which Elijah ultimately disbanded.
The quests that the player will complete involving Veronica couldn’t be more different. The first is a quest that will see the player engage with the Hidden Valley BoS chapter and help them see the error of their ways.
In this quest, the player will have to uncover some technology in the wasteland to help smooth this process along and allow Veronica to continue to work as a supply runner for them.
The player can also opt to help Veronica join the Followers of the Apocolypse. Then secondly, the player will be tasked with sourcing a designer dress for Veronica so that she can feel like a woman once in a while.
Veronica has two perks. The first is one that the player receives as soon as she is recruited, known as Scribe Assistant. This gives the player to use Veronica to craft items via a dialogue option without the need for a physical workbench.
Then secondly, the player will later receive a perk known as Scribe Counter. This isn’t so much a perk as it is a new melee move that Veronica can use in battle.
Overall, Veronica is a warm, progressive, and good-natured character that players should take to as soon as they meet them.
Rose of Sharon Cassidy
Initial Location: Mojave Outpost
Affiliation: NCR, Cassidy Caravans
Related Quests: Birds of a Feather, Heartaches by the Number
Weapon of Choice:
Rose of Sharon Cassidy, or Cass for short, is the owner of Cassidy Caravans, a traveling merchant who, when The Courier meets Cass, has burned to ash. However, due to paperwork and issues traversing the Mojave alone, she is stuck at the Mojave Outpost until further notice and can be found searching for the bottom of a bottle in the Barracks.
Cass is a firecracker and has an opinion on just about anything, not to mention that she isn’t shy when it comes to defending her opinion either, whether that be with the spoken word or in combat. She isn’t the deepest of all the characters on offer for companionship, but she is still an endearing character and one that you would definitely rather have on your side than against you.
She is linked to three quests, one of which can only be completed if you ignore another. Her companion quest sees the player try and investigate the attack on her caravan and try to find the cause and motive for this attack. Then ultimately, the player will then have to track these people down and return the favor.
However, if the player heads to Freeside and happens upon the Silver Rush and the Van Graffs first, they will ask the player to kill Cass. Then the third quest sees the player having recruited Cass to travel to McLafferty caravans to discuss potentially selling Cassidy Caravans and cutting ties with her family business.
Player’s will potentially get two perks from recruiting Cass. Calm heart is a buff that grants Cass an additional 50 hit points, making her a more formidable fighter. Then the other is Hand of vengeance, which instead offers a 15% damage buff when Cass inflicts damage to foes with any gun. Overall, Cass is a down on their luck character with a simple story to tell, but her charisma and bold attitude make her a compelling character to add to your roster.
- Initial Location: Black Mountain
- Affiliation: State of Utobitha
- Related Quests: Old Ghoul School, Crazy, Crazy Crazy
- Weapon of Choice:
Raul Tejada is one of the luckiest and unluckiest men in all of the Mojave, having cheated death on innumerable occasions, but equally, witnessing so much anguish that living was almost a burden more painful than death.
Raul, formerly known as the Ghost of Mexico City, is a superb gunslinger and an expert repairman and mechanic.
He can only be recruited by visiting Black Mountain and finishing the quest involving Tabitha and the State of Utobotha; then you must bust him out of the prison where he has been placed in my the Super Mutants. Raul’s character is also rather interestingly voiced by Danny Trejo.
Raul only has one unique quest known as Old Ghoul School. In this quest, the player will have to travel to areas of the wasteland, speaking to older members of society like Ranger Andy in Novac and Loyal at Nellis Air Force Base, for example, allowing Raul to gain some perspective of how to live in the wasteland as an old ghoul.
Ultimately, your dialogue choices will dictate if Raul becomes a gunslinger again or decides to live a more reserved life away from the gunfire and chaos.
The player will have access to three potential perks when they recruit Raul. One is the standard perk, Regular Maintainance. This perk ensures that all items will only degrade to a maximum of 50% while in the company of Raul.
This perk will upgrade to Full Maintainace that changes this degradation limitation to 75% if the player convinces Raul to give up his gunslinging ways. If they do the opposite, the player will earn the Old Vaquero perk, which increases Raul’s rate of fire by 33%.
Overall, Raul is a weathered character with a colorful past, but it is the future that the Courier helps him carve out for himself that makes Raul special.
- Initial Location: Old Mormon Fort
- Affiliation: The Enclave, The Followers of the Apocolypse
- Related Quests: For Auld Lang Syne,
- Weapon of Choice:
Arcade Gannon is a member of the Followers of the Apocalypse and one of the resident doctors on site. He is one of the most giving and altruistic of all the companions listed, but also one with a spotty past. Arcade decided to join the Followers due to his time spent with the NCR after his family was forced to flee Navarro.
He credits the group for his intelligence and his ability to help others. He has a long-term goal of helping the Followers stabilize their relief effort with new medical breakthroughs and ultimately extend their area of effect across the entire Mojave.
The player also becomes aware that Arcade’s father was an Enclave member, and due to this, Arcade remains close to various survivors of the Enclave era. Arcade can only be recruited if you have a strong reputation with the Followers of the Apocolypse and the player does not associate themselves with Caesar’s Legion.
In terms of quests involving Arcade, the player will eventually earn the trust of Arcade and help him with an effort to get the Enclave remnants to reform in an effort to support the Courier at Hoover Dam.
When this quest is complete, Arcade will travel with the group and will no longer be available as an active companion. Then outside of this quest, Arcade can also play smaller roles in quests like Bitter Springs, Et Tumor, Brute, ED-E, My Love, and That Lucky Old Sun.
Then as for perks, Arcade only offers one perk called Better Healing. This is a buff that means the player character will gain 20% more health from all consumables when in Arcade’s company.
Overall, Arcade is a character that is relatable, altruistic, has strong beliefs and ideals, and offers a questline that links together the events of Fallout 3 and Fallout NV. We urge you to seek him out and experience all that he has to offer.
- Initial Location: Jacobstown
- Affiliation: Jacobstown, Nightkin
- Related Quests: Guess Who I Saw Today? Lily and Leo
- Weapon of Choice: Lily’s Vertibird Blade
Lily is a Nightkin which players will come across at Jacobstown, a settlement for Super Mutants up in the mountain range. You will likely find her tending to the Bighorners on-site.
By nature, Lily is a very sweet and kind-hearted soul, but due to her Schizophrenia, she has the capacity for excessive violence, all due to an entity known as Leo, who inhabits her psyche and asks her to perform unthinkable acts.
She traveled to Jacobstown seeking help for her illness, but after being told how to treat the illness and being warned that one of the side effects would be memory loss, she only takes her medication in half doses out of fear that she will forget her past and her grandchildren from her life in Vault 17, before her involuntary FEV treatment.
Lily plays a vital role in the quest concerning the Nightkin that are first encountered at Jacobstown. She will be willing to help the Nightkin by offering herself up for experiments to help subside the effects of excessive Stealth Boy usage.
Then in her unique quest, the player will have to decide whether it is best to persuade Lily to take her medicine, to not take her medicine, or to ask her to continue taking half doses to maintain her memories and cling to the past.
As for perks, the player will gain access to one called Stealth Girl when they recruit Lily. This is a perk that ensures that all Stealth boys last for twice as long as normal. Plus, when the player performs a stealth attack, these attacks do 10% extra damage.
Overall, Lily is a compelling character and one that has a set of endings that offer nuance, unlike some others listed. It is unclear what option is truly the best outcome for Lily, and we suppose that is the beauty of storytelling.
Either way, we urge you to track her down and get to know her.
- Initial Location: The Kings School of Impersonation
- Affiliation: The Kings
- Related Quests: Ain’t Nothing But a Hound Dog
- Weapon of Choice: N/A
Now moving on to the non-humanoid companions. Rex is a cybernetic dog that is in the ownership of The King when the player first encounters them. Before the war, this dog was a member of the Denver Police Force K9 unit; however, after this, the dog would be found and serve as Caesar’s companion.
However, when fighting for The Legion, he was lost in battle. The King then happened upon this dog while he was wandering through Freeside and immediately gave him a permanent home.
Sadly, when the player finds Rex, he has a degenerative brain disorder that needs to be treated soon, or Rex will pass away. Thankfully, the player can play a role in saving this creature.
Rex has a unique questline where the player will need to track down someone within the wasteland with the medical expertise to perform brain surgery on this dog.
Then at the same time, the player needs to track down a suitable replacement brain for this animal. There are three animals in the wasteland that the player can source a brain from.
Then as for perks, the player is granted the Search and Mark perk when traveling with Rex. This perk creates a green outline around usable items within a short area of effect when the player zooms in the camera or aims down the sights.
These items include ammo, chems, consumables, or weapons. Overall, you might not get much of a discussion out of Rex, but it’s Fallout New Vegas’ homage to Dogmeat, and in our opinion, it’s a bloody good one too.
- Initial Location: Primm
- Affiliation: Enclave, Whitley
- Related Quests: E-DE, My Love
- Weapon of Choice: Miniaturized Tesla Cannon
Then lastly, but certainly not least, we have E-DE, the lovable Enclave robot with more of a back story than one might think. E-DE was constructed on the East Coast and, unlike other propaganda spewing eye-bots, was optimized for basic combat situations.
After the fall of the Enclave, E-DE became the last active model of Eyebot and had a lot of vital data about the Duraframe research that Poseidon Emergy conducted and was then sent on their way to link up with those in Navarro.
However, It was taken out by a rogue sniper, and this is why when the player visits Primm, E-DE can be found awaiting repair in Johnson Nash’s residence.
After traveling with E-DE, the player will eventually be able to partake in the unique quest pertaining to the aforementioned data uploaded on this eyebot.
Ultimately, the player will need to decide whether to trade this info to the Brotherhood of Steel or the Followers of the Apocolypse in return for extensive upgrades to E-DE’s current setup.
It is also worth noting that another iteration of E-DE plays a huge role in the Lonesome Road DLC and acts as an escort across The Divide. However, this robot is not the same as the one you encounter in the Mojave.
Then as for perks, the player will be granted the Enhanced Sensors perk, which allows players to spot enemies from much further away and also marks enemies that are cloaked, such as Nightstalkers and Nightkin.
hen there are the Caramander-E perk ranks which offer extended buffs like added damage, damage threshold, the ability to manufacture Microfusion Cells, and so on. However, this is only available for those that have downloaded the Lonesome Road DLC.
Overall, this unassuming relic of the Enclave tells a tale more captivating than most characters in the Mojave and also serves as a great companion in battle too. So be sure to fix him up when you wander through Primm!
Are There Any Other Companions?
Yes, there are other companions outside of the mainline options listed above. These are companions that can only be recruited during the various DLC offerings linked to the FNV experience, and also, there are quite a few temporary companions that either serve as escorts or followers for the sake of a single questline. Here is a quick list of all the major companions of this nature:
Dead Money DLC
- Christine Royce
- Dean Domino
Honest Hearts DLC
- Waking Cloud
- Joshua Graham (The Burned Man)
Lonesome Road DLC
- E-DE (Clone)
Notable Temporary Companions
- Deputy Beagle
- Cannibal Johnson
- Ted Gunderson
- Private Halford
- Roxie (Old World Blues)
- Ulysees (Lonesome road)
Question: How Many Companions Are There in FNV?
Answer: There are a total of eight mainline companions that the player can recruit in the vanilla Fallout New Vegas experience. There are also DLC companions and temporary followers that one can acquire, but these are not considered mainline companions, and only the eight main companions count toward the ‘the whole gang’s here’ achievement. We should also mention that it is possible to recruit three companions to follow you around at once. These are Rex, E-DE, and then any other humanoid companion.
Question: Are There Companions In Fallout 4?
Answer: Yes, Fallout 4 decided to take a lot of what worked about the FNV companion system and implement this into the next title in the series. Players would be able to recruit colorful companions like MacCready, Nick Valentine, Piper, Preston Garvey, Curie, Cogsworth, and of course, Dogmeat, to name a few. However, despite more potential followers and a more modern take on the companion system, a lot of players felt that, aside from perhaps Nick Valentine, that these companions were not as strongly written as those seen in Fallout New Vegas.
Question: Who is The Best Fallout Companion?
Answer: A subjective question deserves a subjective answer, so in my opinion, I would have to give this to Veronica. I feel that she is the most immediately likable of the bunch, and I love how her story ties in with my favorite DLC of the bunch, Dead Money. However, I personally think that Boone is the best to have around from a combat perspective, and if we were including DLC companions, then Dean Domino and Christine Royce would also have been right up there.
Teamwork Makes The Dream Work!
As you can see from the information above, there are a lot of great companions in Fallout NV and its respective DLC content that the player can team up with. Each of these companions has incredible quest lines backstories, and they do a great job of thinning out the hordes of enemies that will test your mettle as you travel across the wasteland.
So we urge you to use this guide to seek out each of these characters, add them to your dysfunctional little team and enjoy all the tales and dialogue that Obsidian Entertainment has packed into each encounter. As always, thank you for reading Wasteland Gamers!