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- Fallout New Vegas Best Hardcore Builds - April 3, 2022
Hardcore mode is possibly my favorite addition to any Fallout game ever. While Fallout 4’s Hardcore equivalent was incredible, it was New Vegas’ version that introduced the concept to the series.
I’ve probably got more hours in Hardcore mode than I do vanilla Fallout New Vegas, so I know a thing or two about how to optimize for it.
That’s why I’ve put together this guide with the best Fallout New Vegas best hardcore builds. I’ve gone full min-max mode here, making sure that you get the most bang for every single proverbial buck in these builds.
Key Info Up Front
- Strength: 5.
- Perception: 5.
- Endurance: 6.
- Charisma: 9.
- Intelligence: 9.
- Agility: 5.
- Luck: 1.
- Key Skills: Speech, Medicine/Survival/Weapon skill of choice.
Fallout New Vegas Hardcore Build Foundation
Speech is King – Character Creation
Strength – 5
We’re going to leave Strength where it is for a few reasons. Primarily, it’s because we don’t need it for any major perks, but we do need it for carrying weight.
In Hardcore mode, each bullet you carry has weight, meaning your inventory weight limit will fill up pretty quickly compared to vanilla Fallout New Vegas. So, while we don’t need to invest in Strength, we want to avoid taking points away from it if possible.
The only exception to this would be if you’re planning on using Melee weapons as your main form of attack. While I don’t recommend that for Hardcore, or in general, it does get around the ammunition weight problem.
If this is a part of your plan, you can invest Strength to whatever number you see fit up to nine. There are no perks that require you to have eight or above Strength, so seven is a solid number if you do want to do a Melee playthrough. The STR seven perks are pretty powerful, too, so you don’t want to miss out on them.
Perception – 5
There are very few perks gated behind the Perception SPECIAL, and those that are aren’t all that great. So, unless you’re using explosives or energy weapons, Perception doesn’t have much of use beyond highlighting enemies on your compass.
However, I’ve left it at its default of five rather than bringing it down for two reasons. First, in Hardcore, being able to see those enemies on your compass can be life-saving. It might sound trivial, but the last thing you need is a Cazador sneaking up on you from behind because the game doesn’t tell you about it.
Secondly, and more importantly, you’re going to end up investing in Lockpicking inevitably. It doesn’t matter what build, difficulty, or playstyle you’re going for. Lockpicking is a universal skill, and it’s governed by Perception, so I want to avoid kneecapping it before we even start the game.
There is one exception to leaving Perception at five, that’s if you’re running a critical hits build. In that case, you’ll want it at level six for access to Better Criticals. However, unlike with Fallout 4, crit-builds in FNV are more or less completely reserved for stealth. I’ve included a stealth extension down below if you want to go with that kind of playstyle that utilizes critical-hit-based perks.
Endurance – 6
Endurance is a very flexible stat with this build and one that is quite important in Hardcore mode compared to vanilla. Its gated perks are nothing to write home about at all, but the fact that it determines how many hit points you have, and what your Survival skill starts at, is.
Survival is useless in vanilla Fallout New Vegas. In Hardcore, it almost becomes essential. You can get away with not using Survival, but life will be so much easier for you if you do take advantage of it. I mean, the skill was designed with Hardcore in mind.
While this particular build only starts with Survival at 15, I balance that by putting a lot of early emphasis on Medicine to make up for the fact that Stimpacks are weaker. Once your Medicine and Speech are at decent levels, I advise power-leveling your Survival. The recipes it gives you access to can be invaluable.
Charisma – 9
Charisma being at nine should be fairly self-explanatory. For anyone new to Fallout build-crafting, we never push a SPECIAL skill up to 10 in the character creation. Every Fallout game has some sort of collectible that gives you +1 in each of your SPECIAL stats. In New Vegas, they’re implants you can get in the New Vegas Clinic. You can’t go higher than 10, so having a SPECIAL at 10 from the get-go is a waste of a point.
While Charisma has no good perks gated behind it, at all, it does govern your Speech skill. The goal with this build is to have Speech over-leveled quickly so that you can avoid as much conflict, and get more rewards, as soon as possible.
Unlike Fallout 3, New Vegas’ Speech skill isn’t percentage-based. Each possible utilization of the skill is a hard check, so you either meet the requirement, or you don’t. My goal is to make sure you can hit every single one.
It also gives you a bonus to Barter. While we’re not leveling that specifically, having better prices in shops never hurts.
Intelligence – 9
Intelligence has been the greatest perk in Fallout for quite a long time now. That’s no different in Fallout New Vegas. Not only does it determine the starting values of key skills like Medicine and Repair, both of which we’re leveling with this, and every, hardcore build, but it also determines how many skill points you get to distribute every time you level up.
Ideally, you’ll want to get your hands on 4000 caps and get the Intelligence implant as soon as you possibly can to maximize the number of skill points you get throughout your playthrough.
Some of the perks in FNV that I consider staples of every build are gated behind Intelligence, but they only require you to have four INT to access them, so as long as you don’t go below four, there is some room for flexibility here. Although, you’ll be losing out on a lot of value by not keeping Intelligence as high as possible.
Agility – 5
I don’t like using VATs, meaning my inherent opinion towards Agility is negative given that it determines your Action Points. Aside from your AP, it controls your movement speed, which is why I’ve left it at five, and it determines your Sneak and Guns skill.
Now, you can mix this build with any ranged weapon type you want, be it energy or guns. Melee, Unarmed, or Explosives players will need to change their SPECIAL around a bit. I mention this because even if you’re planning on using Guns, Agility isn’t worth leveling for the extra points like it is for Charisma and Speech.
Guns do control how much damage you deal, but you don’t need crazy damage at the start of a game. As you level, the world around you will level with you. So, you can level Guns gradually throughout a playthrough and still perform relatively well.
Except for a few niche VATs and Sneak-related perks, there’s no real reason to have high Agility. The only reason I’m not bringing it below five is that having slow movement speed in Fallout New Vegas is a miserable experience.
Luck – 1
Luck very lightly dictates the starting point of all your Skills, although not nearly enough to be worth mentioning. It also controls your critical hit rate and your actual luck in any of Vegas’ casinos.
Needless to say, if you’re planning on building for crits, you’ll need to change this stat allocation around big time. Otherwise, its only real effect is your casino odds. While earning thousands from blackjack and roulette is fun, it’s not the reason you’re doing a Hardcore playthrough. One of the SPECIAL stats needed to be the fodder so that we could level the others so intensely. It just so happens to be Luck.
This should be fairly self-explanatory. This entire build centers around getting your Speech maxed out as soon as possible so that you can talk your way out of difficult situations, so we want the boost that Speech is going to give us.
The combination of having Speech as a tag skill, our high Charisma, and picking the Good Natured trait means that we start with Speech at 41. That’s a ridiculously high number that will make a lot of the early game a lot more manageable. Namely, you’ll be able to negotiate peace between the Khans and NCR at Boulder City, and you’ll be able to get Benny alone in his suite.
We need a survivability engine for this build in the early game. So, you want to take either Survival or Medicine as a tag skill. For me, Medicine is the better choice. It’ll start at 41 like Speech, and is much more valuable early-game.
Survival begins to shine later on into a playthrough when you have the crafting materials needed for a lot of the recipes. Medicine, on the other hand, is great at the beginning because it determines your effectiveness with Stimpacks. You can justifiably go either way, though.
Weapon Skill of Choice
Lastly, and obviously, you’ll want to tag whatever your weapon skill of choice is, be that Energy Weapons, Melee Weapons, Explosives, Unarmed, or Guns. For Hardcore, I advise going with either Guns or Energy Weapons. There is a case to be made for Melee, but explosives are too expensive, and Unarmed scales way too late to be useful for difficult playthroughs. At least, in my opinion.
Plus, both Guns and Energy Weapons allow you to recycle ammunition, so you should always have bullets or batteries for your weapon of choice without needing to spend a fortune on ammo.
There is only one mandatory trait for this build, and it’s Good Natured. You can combine it with whatever other trait you like, depending on your playstyle.
Good Natured decreases all of your weapon-type skills by five, meaning Guns, Energy Weapons, Melee Weapons, Explosives, and Unarmed. For that, though, we get plus five for Barter, Medicine, Repair, Science, and Speech.
You’re only going to be using one weapon-type skill, while you’re going to be leveling at least three of those five skills that you get a bonus from. So, you’ve got at least a net positive of 10 skill points. This trait lets us start the game with 41 Speech and Medicine without even leveling up yet. You shouldn’t need me to explain why that’s fantastic.
Confirmed Bachelor and Lady Killer – Level 2
There are very few mandatory perks for a Speech build, given that it relies on hard checks. Given that it’s meant to be a foundation for you to build on, this means that the majority of your perk choices will depend on what combat style you want to use.
However, there are a handful of perks that I would consider staples for a Hardcore and vanilla playthrough, starting with both Confirmed Bachelor and Lady Killer, or the female-character equivalent.
These perks give you +10% damage against male and female humans, and also make their Speech checks easier to pass. These are the only perks in the entire game to affect Speech like this, making them a mandatory pick-up for all Speech builds. Plus, the extra damage is great, as well.
Educated – Level 4 INT 4
Educated is a staple perk regardless of literally any other factor. It gives you two extra skill points each time you level up. If you level your character up to level 50, that’s 92 extra skill points you otherwise wouldn’t get. Combined with max Intelligence, you’ll have 16 skill points per level. By the time we’re level 20, we’ll have several skills at level 100.
Jury Rigging – Level 14 Repair 90
Jury Rigging and the next perk I’ve included here are similar to Educated in that they’re mandatory regardless of any other factor, especially on Hardcore. Unlike Educated, however, this isn’t because they make your character stronger.
Both Jury Rigging and Them’s Good Eatin’ break New Vegas’ economy. In the case of Jury Rigging, it allows you to repair high-value weapons with low-value weapons.
While this is great for keeping your guns in good condition, the main benefit of it is how many caps you can make from it. Strong, high-quality weapons sell for an absolute fortune. You’ll be turned into an A-class post-apocalyptic capitalist thanks to your ability to use repair fodder.
An extreme example is a fact that it lets you repair an Anti-Material Rifle with a BB Gun. However, your main source of income will be Brush Guns, Trail Carbines, and Hunting Rifles. Each of those weapons is used by Fiends and enemies all over New Vegas and sell for a few thousand caps in max condition.
With a little bit of effort, you’ll easily be making over ten digits every time you do a massive weapon-collecting run. It almost single-handedly powers this build’s economy.
Chemist – Level 14 Medicine 60
Chemist is a perk that goes from being useless in vanilla to mandatory in Hardcore mode. Stimpacks, in Hardcore, heal you over time rather than immediately, and they aren’t as effective as they are in vanilla. Chemist makes it so that Stimpacks, as well as other chems, last twice as long, effectively doubling how much health each one heals you for.
While it doesn’t increase the speed at which that healing comes through, it will help you hold onto your precious Stimpacks for longer.
Them’s Good Eatin’ – Level 20 Survival 55
I say almost single-handedly because we combine it with Them’s Good Eatin’. If you ask a New Vegas veteran what the best perk in the game is, a lot of them are going to say this one, and they would be right.
The perk, for those that don’t know, gives each living creature a 50% chance of dropping with between one and three Thin Red Past, or Blood Sausage. Now, these two items are great for healing and even open up recipes at a campfire, making them a perfect source of food in a Hardcore playthrough, but their true value lies in how much they’re worth.
Each Thin Red Paste is worth 125 caps, with Blood Sasauge going for 175 caps. With a 50% drop chance, you can easily be making 200-300 caps from half of the enemies you kill. Combine that with the caps you earn from selling those enemies’ weapons, and you’ll have more money than you will ever need.
Bear in mind, though, that this perk requires you to have Old World Blues installed.
This Speech Fallout New Vegas Hardcore build is designed to be a foundation upon which you can build. It doesn’t cover weapon types or combat playstyles for that reason. That choice is up to you.
However, what it does do is make sure that the game is as easy as possible regardless of what playstyle you want to use. With high Speech, a lot of hard encounters in the game can be peacefully resolved, including the final New California Republic fight against Legate Lanius.
By giving you the option to always pass Speech checks, you will always be able to exploit the best possible option. You’ll rarely be locked out of anything, giving you an extreme amount of flexibility.
So, your playstyle can be whatever you want. You can be peaceful and make everybody friendly, exploiting the power of Speech in FNV, or you can be a murderous maniac that uses their silver tongue to extort rewards from people. It’s entirely your call.
After this foundational build, I’ve included two different extensions depending on what playstyle/weapon type you want to use. Each of these extensions alters this foundation slightly in every area except for development, which is the same regardless of what weapon skill you’re leveling.
Level 1 – 14
We have two main goals for between levels one and 14. We need to make sure that our Repair is at least 90 so that we can get Jury Rigging ASAP, and we want our Speech skill to be as high as possible.
Thankfully, both of these goals are easy to achieve.
First and foremost, pick up one of the two sex-related perks for your first level up. Then, at level four, take educated. At level six, grab the other sex-related perk.
From here to level 14, take whatever perk suits your playstyle and weapon choice.
You should spend this time pumping your main skills. Invest at least five points into Speech at every level, but don’t be afraid to dump all of them into it. I split Medicine/Speech until Medicine is around 50. Then, I stop leveling Medicine and split between Speech, my weapon skill, and Survival.
At around level five or six, you should have your Speech at about 70. For the next two/three levels, pour all of your points in it to get it maxed out early. Don’t go above 98, though, because our Charisma implant from the Vegas Clinic will give us those last two skill points.
After my Speech is at 98, I do the same thing for Repair until it’s rank 90. Generally, you’ll be able to hit this point at around level 12. At this point, you’ll be still in the early game, have 50 Medicine, decent weapon skill and Survival, max Speech, and nearly max Repair.
From here, up to level 15, I go back to a split between my weapon skill and Survival. By level 15, you should have your weapon skill around 50 and your Survival around 70. Your skills at this point are ridiculously high for a level 15 character, with all of your mandatory investment already done.
Level 15 onwards is much less strict than those first 15 levels, except for needing to take Them’s Good Eatin’ at level 20. Personally, this is when I start leveling Lockpicking and/or Science.
I’ll split my weapon skill with Lockpick, and occasionally spend a handful of points in Medicine. I’ll also eventually take this time to boost repair up to 98.
After level 20 or so, you’re going to have most of your main skills maxed out, or extremely high, which is crazy. You can now start working on the likes of Barter if you want, but all the hard work should be done and you’re not even going to be halfway through your playthrough yet.
You might not think that a Speech build will affect your New Vegas gameplay in any meaningful way. After all, it has no bearing on combat whatsoever.
That’s a fair enough sentiment to hold, but it’s completely wrong. Speech will make Fallout New Vegas extremely easy. So much so that many people consider it to be the best skill in the game. I mean, it lets you skip the final boss fight for crying out loud.
It’ll open the world of NV up to you, and with that all the additional options that Fallout New Vegas quests come with. You’ll never be locked out of paths or rewards, and our precise leveling and stat distribution mean you should be overpowered extremely early on.
I’ve gone to great lengths to make sure that this is the best possible build because it’s designed for Hardcore. Hardcore is no walk in the park, and for an inexperienced player, it’s punishing. This build aims to mitigate as much of that punishment as possible, while not relying on any questionable methods. Every choice I’ve made with this build is fully legitimate within the rules of the game, it’s just extremely optimized.
So, if you don’t want to make Hardcore mode as manageable as possible, this isn’t the build for you. If you do want to meet the challenge by being as prepared as possible, though, this is the foundation you want to build on.
Changes to SPECIAL
Out of all the build extensions I’ve included in this Fallout New Vegas Hardcore builds guide, this is the one that changes the SPECIAL distribution the most. Every time you hit a sneak attack, it automatically counts as a critical, meaning this build can easily take advantage of critical hit perks. This is true regardless of whether you’re opting to use a sniper like I am, or a more close-range stealth weapon like a pistol or knife.
The main changes we’re making to the SPECIAL here are boosting Perception up to six, and Luck up to six, which can be a bit of a problem. The reason for this is that it unlocks Better Criticals which increases crit damage by 50%. It, more or less, guarantees a one-shot kill on any powerful sniper rifle shot you hit from stealth, making it sort of non-negotiable for a stealth build of any type.
This means that we’re losing out on six points from elsewhere. This number can be even larger if you go for Melee or Unarmed stealth, in which case you’ll need Agility, as well.
In any case, I would recommend leaving your Intelligence at nine and pulling a few points out of Charisma and Endurance/Strength to make up the difference. I would also advise that you take advantage of the Intense Training perk if you have to, although losing a perk choice for more SPECIAL is always painful given that you only get one every two levels.
Regardless, you’ll need six in both Perception and Luck to use a stealth build to its full potential.
Having lower Charisma means that taking Good Natured is even more important. We’re going to have a lower starting Speech skill, so we want to make sure we maintain the +5 we get from the trait.
Aside from that, there is no mandatory trait pick for a stealth build. Built to Destroy is great for the increased regular crit chance, and the trait’s downside is mitigated by Jury Rigging, but we’re relying on stealth to trigger our crits, not regular combat.
Ultimately, pick whichever trait you want, or none at all, it won’t impact your build in any major way.
Tag Skill Changes
The most obvious change to your skills is the fact that you’re going to be leveling Sneak. This is an extra skill that will also change the way you develop your character.
It’s hard to determine what we should cut in favor of Sneak with our tags, but I think that Medicine/Survival makes the most sense. Our goal is to stay out of combat as much as possible. The combination of both Speech and Sneak makes that easier than you might think. So, if we play this build right, we shouldn’t need to rely on healing as much as a non-stealth build would.
Your last tag skill will be your weapon type of choice. I recommend Guns so that you can go down a sniper route, but you can go Melee Weapons or Unarmed if you’re so inclined.
Optional: The Professional – Level 6 Sneak 70
The Professional (which is a great Leon the Professional reference) only applies to pistols, revolvers, and SMGs. It grants you an additional 20% critical damage with all weapons of those types, including Guns and Energy Weapons.
If you see yourself using pistols or SMGs over rifles, this is a must-have perk and will let you hit ridiculous damage numbers.
Optional: Ninja – Level 20 Sneak 80 Melee Weapons 80
Ninja is a great stealth perk for anyone running Melee or Unarmed stealth builds. Unfortunately, its effects only apply to those two weapon types, making it useless for anyone using a ranged build. For close-quarters combat types, though, it offers two effects:
- First, it gives all of your Melee and Unarmed attacks a +15% critical chance. That’s good and all, but the meat and bones of the perk lies in its second effect.
- Ninja gives all of your Melee and Unarmed Sneak attack criticals +25% damage. That’s a massive flat damage bonus that, combined with the next perk, makes all of your Sneak attacks capable of one-shotting some of the hardest enemies in the game.
Better Criticals does exactly what it says on the thin – give you better critical hits. Specifically, it gives you 50% more damage on all your crits. When you Sneak attack crit someone, the shot counts as a regular critical hit and gets the Sneak multiplier, meaning Sneak attacks benefit from regular critical hit-based perks, including this one.
Combined with either Ninja or The Professional, all of your Sneak attacks will have a flat 75% damage increase before the Sneak multiplier is even calculated, making every single shot deadly.
Your playstyle with this build is fairly self-explanatory. It’s possibly the safest build in all of Fallout New Vegas, making it perfect for a Hardcore playthrough. When you’re not taking advantage of your max Speech, you’ll be exploiting Sneak to stay out of open combat, taking your enemies down from long range.
You should, if possible, always avoid an active firefight. We’re lacking on our Medicine and Survival leveling in favor of Sneak, meaning you’ll have weak healing, so you want to avoid damage rather than tanking it.
So, lie, cheat, steal, and sneak your way to success. Just try not to get shot along the way.
Changes to SPECIAL
Thankfully, the handful of good Energy Weapon perks is locked behind your Energy Weapons skill rather than any of the SPECIAL stats. So, we can leave them exactly as they are without making any sort of adjustment to them.
If you wanted to, though, you could bump up your Perception a little bit to get a higher starting Energy Weapons skill, but that’s not as necessary for a weapon skill as it is for something like Speech or Medicine.
The same thing can be said about your Traits. Aside from Good Natured, there are none here that I would consider mandatory for an Energy Weapons build. However, I would advise that you strongly consider taking Wild Wasteland.
Taking Wild Wasteland means that instead of the YCS/186 Gauss Rifle, which is an extremely powerful Energy Weapon in its own right, you’ll be able to get the Alien Blaster. While the blaster’s ammunition may be limited, it’s one of the best weapons in the game, full stop, in terms of raw damage.
If you’re not a fan of the goofiness that comes with Wild Wasteland, though, the YCS/186 is a fine, albeit weaker, alternative.
Tag Skill Changes
The best thing about an Energy Weapons build compared to something like Stealth is that the only real change we’re making is in our weapon type, meaning all of our tag skills get to stay the same.
However, there is one difference between a hard Speech build and an Energy Weapon variation of it, and that’s the fact that we’ll be leveling Science. Science is going to open up our ammunition options at Workbenches.
In vanilla, you can ignore this feature. In Hardcore, though, you want to be taking advantage of it. Not only will this let you recycle old cells, therefore offsetting how much money Microfusion Cells cost you, but you’ll be able to convert them into more powerful alternatives.
I don’t recommend picking Science as a tag skill over Speech, Medicine, and Energy Weapons, but I do recommend that you level it instead of Lockpicking as you develop your character.
Laser Commander/Plasma Spaz – Level 22 Energy Weapons 90/Level 10 Energy Weapons 70
Laser Commander and Plasma Spaz are perks for laser and plasma weapons respectively. While I’ll always be a Plasma Rifle fanboy, the Laser Rifle in FNV is simply superior in every way, including its perk.
Laser Commander gives you +15% damage and 10% crit chance with every single laser weapon in the game. Compare that to Plasma Spaz which gives your plasma weapons a 20% AP reduction, and it’s clear which is both the superior weapon type and perk.
Laser Commander is a must-pick for anyone planning on using lasers, while plasma users can skip Plasma Spaz, but it doesn’t hurt to pick it up.
Meltdown – Level 16 Energy Weapons 90
Meltdown is also not mandatory by any means, but as one of the few perks in the game for Energy Weapons, you’ve got no reason not to get it.
When you kill an enemy with an Energy Weapon, Meltdown triggers an explosion on their body similar to a Plasma Grenade. This explosion can be treated as a grenade as it will damage nearby targets and propel items away. Anyone killed by the Meltdown explosion will also trigger another Meltdown.
It’s a dangerous perk as you can easily end up attacking a friendly, or even yourself, with the explosion, but it can provide a nice bit of additional damage whenever you’re fighting a large group of soldiers.
Vigilant Recycler – Level 6 Science 70
One of the biggest, yet often underlooked, differences between Guns and Energy Weapons is just how expensive Microfusion Cells are compared to bullets. With Guns, your different weapons will take different ammo types of various costs, meaning you’ll always have a budget option. Energy Weapons almost exclusively use MF Cells except for energy pistols.
Microfusion Cells are hard to come across, and when a vendor does sell them, it’s for an extortionate amount of caps. There are two things I recommend you do to offset this. One, buy MF Cells in bulk boxes when you can. The decrease in quality is more than worth the cheaper price.
Two, recycle your batteries. MF Cells will drain and stay in your inventory. You can then take those drained cells to a Workbench and put some more juice into them. Trust me when I say that you can easily get 30% more use out of every group of MF Cells you have. I’ve had times when I’d have 1000 cells last me tens of hours purely because I kept recycling them.
Vigilant Recycler will help with that. It doubles your chance to retain a drained cell when you fire a shot and unlocks all of the Energy Weapon recycling recipes at Workbenches. The money this will save you, and the extra damage those recipes can give you, shouldn’t be understated.
You won’t have a steady Energy Weapon setup for the first few hours of your playthrough, so you can afford to pick this perk up a little later, but you need to be grabbing it at some point.
Your playstyle with Energy Weapons is the same as it is with a straight Guns build. The only thing that changes is that you need to be more conscious of your ammunition and not missing shots as every cell costs a small fortune. Aside from that, it’s point and shoot. Nothing too complicated.
Question: Is a Melee build viable in Fallout New Vegas?
Answer: No. Melee builds and Unarmed builds are not viable for Fallout New Vegas both for vanilla and Hardcore mode. While I’ve discussed your Melee options, mainly as a part of a stealth build, it’s an unviable weapon type on its own. You’re too susceptible to damage, especially on higher difficulties.
Question: Can you fast travel in Fallout New Vegas Hardcore mode?
Answer: Yes, you can fast travel in FNV Hardcore mode, provided your hunger and thirst are low enough to make the journey.
Question: Can companions die in Hardcore mode?
Answer: Yes, unlike in Vanilla Fallout New Vegas, your companions can die in Hardcore mode.
That’s all I have for you in this Fallout New Vegas Hardcore builds guide. Hardcore mode was one of my favorite additions to NV compared to Fallout 3, so it’s safe to say that I know my stuff when it comes to it. I’ve probably played more Hardcore hours than I have vanilla.
If you’ve never tried it before, you’re in for a treat. It’s a hell of a lot of fun, and the additional challenges it brings are more immersive than anything else. It’s not for everybody, but everybody should try it at least once.