Fallout 4: Best Leveling Build

Discover the Best Leveling Build in Fallout 4 and how to create a powerful character with Perks, S.P.E.C.I.A.L., Stats, armor, and weapons.

Fallout 4 Best Leveling Build

This build guide has been updated for Game version 1.10.980 on PC and Free Next Gen Update on PlayStation and Xbox.

Best Leveling Build in Fallout 4

The Leveling Build in Fallout 4 features a high intelligence build emphasizing earning experience points as fast as possible. Experience (XP) is earned based on your intelligence and can be increased via the Idoit Savant perk. What makes the Leveling Build unique is the quickness of leveling, but it also has an effective build that can do damage, survive, and craft the best armor and weapon mods in Fallout 4. With high intelligence, you will use Nerd Rage and Lone Wanderer for damage reduction and eventually Heavy Weapons for damage. Moreover, the best leveling build shines with utility, allowing you to lock pick doors, hack terminals, and scrounge for extra ammunition.

The downside of the build is a slower start and dependency on chems (Psycho, Jet) and Power Armor for survivability. Moreover, we have a lower charisma score, so Local Leader and settlement build and gameplay will take place beyond level 50. However, this build is designed for the completionist playthrough and for someone who wants to power level with high damage, survivability, and crafting availability.

Leveling Build ProsLeveling Build Cons
High Intelligence Slow Start
Advanced CraftingLow Charisma
Insane XP GainsCompletionist Focused

Features and Mechanics for Best Leveling Build in Fallout 4

Fallout 4 Power Armor Build Gameplay Preview

The following list presents all the essential Leveling Features and Mechanics in Fallout 4:

  • Damage – Laser
  • Range – 100 meters
  • Weapon – Energy Weapons
  • S.P.E.C.I.A.L. STATS
    • Strength – 2
    • Perception – 6
    • Endurance – 1
    • Charisma – 3
    • Intelligence – 10
    • Agility – 1
    • Luck – 5
  • Best Perks – Idiot Savant, Night Person, Nerd Rage, Bloody Mess, Heavy Gunner
  • Companion – Dog Meat

S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Stats

The best S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stats for the Leveling build are 10 intelligence with 6 perception and 5 luck. Intelligence determines your overall XP earned and allows for high-end crafting perks and bonuses. Perception helps with VATS accuracy, but it also gives the Night Person perk, which increases your overall intelligence by +3 at night. Thus, you can rest in a bed and force the nighttime option for even more experience gains. Lastly, Luck is critical because of the Idiot Savant perk, which can randomly produce 3x times luck for all kills.

Below is the best recommended S.P.E.C.I.A.L. Stats for the Leveling build in Fallout 4 videogame RPG:

  • 2 Strength (S): influences your carrying capacity, melee damage, and the effectiveness of melee weapons.
  • 6 Perception (P): affects your accuracy in VATS, the chance of detecting stealthy enemies, and the ability to pick locks and spot traps.
  • 1 Endurance (E): It affects your maximum health, radiation resistance, and ability to withstand environmental hazards.
  • 3 Charisma (C): influences your success in dialogue options, ability to negotiate prices with vendors, and effectiveness in leading companions.
  • 10 Intelligence (I): affects the number of experience points earned, the quality of crafted items, and your effectiveness with high-tech weapons and terminals.
  • 1 Agility (A): It affects your overall movement speed, ability to sneak effectively, and performance in VATS.
  • 5 Luck (L): affects critical hit chance, the likelihood of finding valuable items, and the outcome of random events.

Additionally, consider collecting Bobbleheads throughout your Fallout 4 (FO4) adventure. Bobbleheads are collectible items scattered throughout the game world. Each bobblehead represents a particular attribute or skill, and when collected, it permanently increases your character’s corresponding stat or ability.

Best Perks

Fallout 4 Best Leveling Perks

The best Perks for a Leveling build are Idiot Savant, Night Person, Nerd Rage, Bloody Mess, and Heavy Gunner. Idiot Savant randomly increases experience upon kills, while Night Person increases your overall intelligence at night. Intelligence determines overall experience gains, thus traveling at night and killing enemies produces incredible experience gains. Bloody Mess and Heavy Gunner are your damage-producing perks. Bloody Mess is helpful because it doesn’t require a specific weapon type and stacks with Heavy Gunner or heavy weapons later in more advanced levels.

Here is the list of the best and recommended Perks for the Leveling Build in Fallout 4:

  • Idiot Savant – for a massive XP boost, Idiot Savant is your best choice in the Luck tree. Once maxed out, you can triple your experience from kills at random and fly through the levels in Fallout 4.
  • Night Person – Gaining +3 intelligence and perception helps increase experience and accuracy in VATS, so travel at night!
  • Nerd Rage + Lone Wanderer – the best damage reduction perks are Nerd Rage and Lone Wanderer. Nerd Rage will activate when your health dips and slow time, while Lone Wanderer grants a passive damage reduction traveling solo or with Dog Meat. These two are critical for survival alongside chemists, which can increase the duration of damage reduction aid items.
  • Bloody Mess – Instead of focusing on weapon-specific perks, we choose Bloody Mess because it adds damage to all weapon types. Once maxed out, you can explode enemies and have multi-kill potential regardless of your weapon choice.
  • Heavy Gunner – above level 40, you should have access to heavy weapons that produce some of the most damage. Thus, Heavy Gunner is selected later. You could swap to Rifleman, Commando, or any other choice.

Level Progression

Expect a slow start with leveling progression and the hardest part of Fallout 4. This level build will unlock primarily damage reduction and utility perks at the start. Locksmith, Hacker, and Scrounger make it much easier for the game to find useful weapons, armor, and material, but they do not produce any damage. Moreover, Lone Wanderer, Nerd Rage, and Medic are all taken within the first 10 levels to help with survivability. Overall damage will increase with better crafting perks, power armor, and advanced higher-level weapons.

During levels 30-50, we select heavy crafting and damage perks. The downside of this selection is lower Charisma, which forgoes Local Leader if you enjoy settlement building. However, if you enjoy that content, you can obtain a bobblehead and drop Scrounger perks to reach local leaders. Otherwise, various weapons based on ammunition should be used until level 40 or higher and focus on modifying a powerful heavy weapon.

Level 1 – 10

Fallout 4 Best Perks for Leveling Build Level 1-10

These perk selections are all about utility and survival. Getting past the first 10 levels in Fallout 4 can be brutal, with low supplies and ammunition. Pick up Power Armor and Fusion Cores and use them when you expect tough encounters. As your ammunition and supplies build, the game will become easier with more options. Focus on survivability, collecting early, and the damage and crafting at later levels.

Here’s a list of the best perks to select from levels 1 to 10 with the Leveling Build Guide in Fallout 4:

  • Level 1 – None
  • Level 2 – Idiot Savant
  • Level 3 – Lone Wanderer
  • Level 4 – Nerd Rage
  • Level 5 – Nuclear Physicist
  • Level 6 – Medic
  • Level 7 – Locksmith
  • Level 8 – Night Person
  • Level 9 – Hacker
  • Level 10 – Scrounger

Level 11 – 20

Fallout 4 Best Perks for Leveling Build Level 11-20

From levels 11 to 20, we gain more utility, damage reduction, and crafting! Chemist is taken, and you should not sleep on the power of Aid items like Psycho and Jet. You can get addicted, requiring some caps to remove in Diamond City, but the bonuses are huge and worth it.

Here’s a list of the best perks to select from levels 11 to 20 with the Leveling Build Guide in Fallout 4:

  • Level 11 – Idiot Savant 2
  • Level 12 – Chemist
  • Level 13 – Gun Nut
  • Level 14 – Nuclear Physicist 2
  • Level 15 – Hacker 2
  • Level 16 – Locksmith 2
  • Level 17 – Lone Wanderer 2
  • Level 18 – Scrounger 2
  • Level 19 – Bloody Mess
  • Level 20 – Bloody Mess 2

Level 21 – 30

Fallout 4 Best Perks for Leveling Build Level 21-30

At this point, you should have a balanced build, and thus, we switch to some crafting-focused perks. Spend time traveling and collecting Bobbleheads to increase your overall stats so you don’t select a level perk. If you do, feel free to take an additional perk or something you prefer.

Here’s a list of the best perks to select from levels 21 to 30 with the Leveling Build Guide in Fallout 4:

  • Level 21 – Strength +1 (or Bobblehead)
  • Level 22 – Armorer
  • Level 23 – Demolition Expert
  • Level 24 – Science
  • Level 25 – Night Person 2
  • Level 26 – Nuclear Physicist 3
  • Level 27 – Locksmith 3
  • Level 28 – Hacker 3
  • Level 29 – Chemist 2
  • Level 30 – Nerd Rage 2

Level 31 – 40

Fallout 4 Best Perks for Leveling Build Level 31-40

Levels 30 to 40 are about crafting and unlocking Gun Nut, Science, and Armorer’s full potential. With these perks and crafting, you should be able to upgrade your power armor, guns, and armor to near maximum, which will help with damage and survivability while leveling.

Here’s a list of the best perks to select from levels 31 to 40 with the Leveling Build Guide in Fallout 4:

  • Level 31 – Bloody Mess 3
  • Level 32 – Armorer 2
  • Level 33 – Gun Nut 2
  • Level 34 – Idiot Savant 3
  • Level 35 – Science 2
  • Level 36 – Armorer 3
  • Level 37 – Gun Nut 3
  • Level 38 – Science 3
  • Level 39 – Science 4
  • Level 40 – Lone Wanderer 3

Level 41 – 50

Fallout 4 Best Perks for Leveling Build Level 41-50

The levels in the 40s are focused on optimizing damage by taking another Strength +1 and Heavy Gunner. We assume you will be using Power Armor, so carrying a heavy weapon won’t be as troublesome. However, this is your chance to modify the build to what you prefer. You can deviate and go high Charisma and Local Leader perks for settlement build. Only do this if your damage is substantial, though it is an option.

Here’s a list of the best perks to select from levels 41 to 50 with the Leveling Build Guide in Fallout 4:

  • Level 41 – Armorer 4
  • Level 42 – Gun Nut 4
  • Level 43 – Strength +1 and Bobblehead
  • Level 44 – Heavy Gunner
  • Level 45 – Heavy Gunner
  • Level 46 – Heavy Gunner
  • Level 47 – Heavy Gunner
  • Level 48 – Heavy Gunner
  • Level 49 – Bloody Mess 4
  • Level 50 – Nerd Rage 3

Gear and Weapons

Fallout 4 Righteous Authority Laser Rifle
Fallout 4 Lab Coat
Fallout 4 How to Get X-02 Power Armor

Righteous Authority, X-02 Power Armor, and Lab Coat are the best items for a leveling build. The Lab Coat adds +2 intelligence, while Righteous Authority is a unique laser gun that can be obtained early in the game. The X-02 Power Armor is now a part of the base game of Fallout 4 and provides exceptional protection and mods. Below are the best items while leveling and how to obtain them:

Righteous Authority – given to you from Paladin Danse, this Laser Rifle makes a great weapon at the start of Fallout 4. Especially if you plan on using the Rifleman perk; otherwise, it’s still great with increased critical damage. You can get a Laser Musket during the initial freeing of Preston Garvey, then look to Plasma and eventually Gauss Rifle. Swap to heavy weapons, like Incinerator and Tesla Cannon, later in the game.

Armor – initially, look to equip leather armor and modify it for damage reduction. Eventually, you can upgrade to Combat Armor as you progress. Use this when venturing out without Power Armor.

Lab Coat – the Lab Coat gives you a +2 intelligence store and is worn while turning in quest. Remember, your experience gains are based on intelligence, and Idiot Savant can trigger during quest turn, so throw on a lab coat. You can obtain a Lab Coat from Tinker Tom in the Railroad HQ.

X-02 Power Armor – your primary means of defense is Power armor, and the X-02 is the best and is now included in the base game. White Pait Mod will add intelligence with all the pieces painted. Jet Pack is helpful for the chest when moving around or Core Assembly for AP regeneration. The legs were modified to Optimized Servos for better sprinting and action points.

Patrolman Sunglasses – most sunglasses give you a bonus and can be worn under armor and power armor. Patrolman Sunglasses give +1 perception, which helps with VATS. Found in Cambridge Police Station.


Fallout 4 Dog Meat Companion

Dog Meat is the best companion for the Leveling build because it does not negate the Lone Wanderer perk bonuses. With three ranks into Lone Wanderer, you will take 20% less damage, do 25% more damage, and carry 100 more pounds. This is in addition to Dog Meat scrambling for items and distracting enemies.

Dog Meat can be found at the Red Rocket truck stop shortly after the game’s introduction. Moreover, you can gain the Attack Dog companion perk to increase Dog Meat’s affinity (affection) to the maximum. Attack dog increases accuracy in V.A.T.S. against enemies immobilized by dog companions. Unlike other companions, Dog Meat’s affinity is increased through leveling and spending perk points. We highly suggest using Dog Meat whenever possible to gain the most damage and reduce damage using the best Leveling build.

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