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Character Build: The Replacement (FO4)

Tags: #Motty Build  #Fallout 4 Build  #Character Build Gunslinger  #Character Build Infiltrator  #Character Build Survival 
  • Member
    May 22, 2016

    I was thoroughly intrigued by Golden Fool’s “Roleplaying a Synth in Fallout 4” post back in March. It got me thinking about playing as a Synth, who doesn’t know she’s a synth…at least not at first. With the addition of the Far Harbor DLC, Bryn noted that we have even more to think about regarding sythns and their role in the Wasteland. This build asks the question, what if the Sole Survivor is actually a Synth? And provides just enough direction to guide the player through some interesting decisions and gameplay.  

    As far as she knows, her husband is murdered and son is gone. But being released from Vault 111… that was just part of an Institute experiment. A final exam of sorts. Will programming memories produce the desired effect? Will she do exactly what they need? The hope is that their latest model will take out the expiring and outdated Kellogg, replacing him as their topside enforcer. Humanity’s best hope has a new girl in town and there’s definitely more than meets the eye. 

    This build was specifically constructed to play (and succeed) on the new, brutal Survival Mode. As such, each special stat and perk has a purpose. Should one choose to play on regular levels, I would recommend taking higher intelligence and perception, with less luck and strength. 

    S – 6
    P – 1 (Bobblehead, +3 investment to open up demolition expert)
    E -  3
    C – 6
    I – 2 (Bobblehead + 1 Investment for Hacker)
    A – 5 (Special + bobblehead for Ninja)
    L – 5

    “I won’t lie, it’s no coincidence that your path crossed his.”


    Lone Wanderer – The first perk taken in Survival Mode to boost carry weight and damage dealt.

    Strong Back – An additional perk to get carry weight respectable.

    Gunslinger – Main weapons will be, Old Faithful, Kellogg’s Pistol, and a Silenced 10mm which will give way to the Deliverer. 

    Live Giver – Every extra health point is coveted

    Idiot Savant – taken early to help level, best used with lower INT 

    Local Leader – Setup supply lines for easy access all over, since there’s no fast travel

    Medic – healing comes in handy and rank 1 is needed to build clinics in Settlements.

    Sneak – Used for more than just ranged sniping. You'll want to consider avoiding conflict on more than one occasion, especially early on. But multipliers do come in handy, especially trying to get to Virgil and back on foot (twice).

    Ninja – Simply put, ranged sneak multipliers.

    Sandman – Staying silent has its advantages. Silencers on the Deliver and Overseer’s Guardian make for happy hunting.

    Pickpocket – Rank 2 allows you to plant explosives on unsuspecting victims. They can’t hurt you without their weapon (Rank 3)!  Super high risk reward adds even for adrenaline to this intense play through. 

    Armorer – It’s hard to get enough protection, this helps a little. If you choose ballistic weave, rank 3 is enough to line a dress or undergarment. 

    Rifleman – Take a walk east from Hangman’s Alley with 3 Fusion Cores and talk to Alexis in Vault 81. Get yourself Overseer’s Guardian, which won’t even need one point from this perk to be effective until around level 35. With Ninja and sneak multipliers complementing the legendary additional projectile, she’s all you’ll need for ranged sniping.

    Demolitions Expert – after the bobblehead and some well timed investments, demolitions expert is an absolute scale tipper. Explosives are versatile and powerful, just like the Replacement. My favorite is Level 2 which provides the arc needed for precision delivery.

    Hacker / Locksmith– Nick’s example as a synth leads us to believe she also should be fairly adept in hacking & lock-picking. Requires bobblehead (Boston Library) and +1 investment in INT and bobblehead (Concord) and +2 investment for Perception respectively. 

    The Look: Female, blonde fem-fatale, pale, blue eyes, plastic-like (Think Uma Thurman’s Gattica).

    Gear: Early – Military fatigues, wraparound goggles or black rimmed glasses (PER +1), Leather (shadowed or muffled are helpful), Sea Captain’s hat (found in your house: +2 END is helpful for extra AP in sprinting around the non-fast travel wasteland). 

    Late: Synth Outfit/Armor, Ballistic Weave Dress, Kellogg’s Outfit (A girl’s gotta have options, right?). If you suspect you'll need a lot of protection for a certain mission (say, taking out a Courser in Greentech Genetics), loading up with as much armor as you have is recommended. I tried to plan my gear based on what I thought best fit the part. Sometimes it meant repeating a section, but that's all part of a Survival play through anyway. Mostly, I stuck with Kellogg's outfit, which I personally think looks amazing on female characters.

    Old Faithful - acquired fairly early on from Arturo with the help of same grape mentats. The Legendary "Instigating" effect does double damage when enemies are at full health. It's a great option for early help in Survival Mode. Following the main story yields plenty of ammo.
    Kellogg’s Pistol - If you're going to replace him and use his outfit you might as well wield his gun. I scoped mine to use as a ranged option, prior to acquiring the favored rifle, shown below. 
    Silenced 10mm -->  Deliverer: Starting the game, the 10mm is a useful weapon and can be well modified until such time as you feel capable of escorting Deacon to the switchboard and acquiring the DPS-king Deliverer. 
    Overseer’s Guardian (Or looted Suppressed Sniper Rifle of Choice) - I upgraded mine with the .308, suppressor and recon scope. Be careful, the combination of Ninja, Sneak and Sandman perks make this gun extremely OP. I "Accidentally" 3-shotted a Legendary Alpha Deathclaw heading to see Virgil the second time. In fact, I didn't perk Rifleman until after level 35 because it's that powerful, even with standard .45 ammo. 
                                                                                  "Let me ask you a quesiton. Could you be a synth?" - DIMA

    Faction: Minutemen & Institute (Institute ending). Minutemen are chosen here as a means to an end for Survival Mode. Supply lines, Artillery, Flare Gun Support, all come in handy when trying to survive. Once you gain access to the Institute, gradually withdrawal leadership above ground, while maintaining them as neutral allies.

    Followers: None/Dogmeat. Like Kellogg, you operate mostly alone. Dogmeat was used for the tougher runs in SM and a few extra carry weight points early on.

    Home Base: Early – Hangman’s Alley, later – Institute (one of the few places you can fast travel to and from). This combination allows easy access to most of your goods as the CIT Ruins and Hangman’s Alley are just a bridge apart.

    Bobbleheads: Small Guns (Gunner’s Plaza)

    Getting Started:
    Spend some time in Sanctuary and Red Rocket loading up on resources and leveling up a bit. Make your way south to the Drumlin Diner (there’s a mattress for saving on the road just north on top of a billboard). Get some caps and keep heading south. Pick your way carefully to Diamond City, sleep at the Dugout Inn. Take Hangman’s Alley (gluck!) from the Raiders and head back to Sanctuary. 

    You should be able to complete Sanctuary at this point. Send a provisioner to Red Rocket. Build a Settlement Recruitment beacon. Send a provisioner to Hangman’s Alley. Now that you have your first main line setup, make sure to deck your northwestern settlers out with defense and upgraded guns. You won’t make it back in time to fight for them! 

    Head back south, taking a detour through Sunshine Tidings to grab the Wasteland Survival Guide for double meat. Yum! Setup shop at Hangman’s Alley before going off to save Nick. 

    Proceed through Act 1 as quickly as possible to take out Kellogg and get a favorite gun. But be ready for tough battles every step of the way. (Hint: There's a bed for saving right before this confrontation).

    Infiltrate the Railroad to get the Deliverer and access to Ballistic Weave (optional), and then abandon them.

    Access the Institute and complete the main quest.

    Combat and Roleplay:
    The goal is to be a sneaky agent of efficiency without solely relying on sneak assassinations. Stalk your prey. Think through each interaction. Can you take their weapon? Plant a mine on them? Bypass them and still complete your task? How about sniping the lookouts and stalking the rest for up close and personal kills? 

    You’re cold & calculated, because well…you’re a synth. Act as robotic and logical as much as possible, all while trying to resolve how human you feel. (I used the "questioning" dialogue option a lot).

    As for roleplaying the end, my take is that Father has programmed The Replacement to do the Institute’s dirty work. As the story progresses, she becomes more self-aware (much like the other synths under Institute direction). The tension lies in knowing she’s a synth and yet feeling compelled to follow Father’s directives. His last act as director is to prove to the scientists and the commonwealth that their technology is advanced enough to have a synth run the Institute. 

    Will she? My approach was to roleplay The Replacement as increasingly self-aware, smart and a little power hungry. What happens when the creation becomes director? 

    Far Harbor Notes (Spoilers):
    With the Far Harbor DLC, and the interaction with new Synths like DIMA, we have even more to wonder about the true nature of our character builds. After finishing the main quest, I visited Far Harbor and played around with a few of the options in the main FH quest line. At first I figured The Replacement would side with Dima, sympathizing with his quest for creating his own existence, separate from the Institute. But, if The Replacement visits FH after ascending to Director, I actually think she would reject the Acadia synths and their quest for peaceful exclusion, seeing it as a threat and insult to the creators. In the end, each player must make their own choice. 

    Closing Notes:
    This wouldn’t be possible without the aforementioned post on Roleplaying as a Synth by Golden Fool. I highly recommend checking it out. Many thanks to Ponty for sharing his super helpful tips to navigate Survival Mode on his Survivor's Log on Fallout Hub.

  • Member
    May 22, 2016
    Yessssss. Glad to see this one out, Motty! :) I love the stalking your prey aspect. Nice touch. I might play this one myself. :D
  • Member
    May 22, 2016
    :) thanks
  • May 26, 2016

    Can't believe I missed this one. I really should check this corner of the site out more often!

    Glad to see a build utilizing both the Survivor's Log and Golden's guide, and even more glad it could be put to great use like this. I love the femme fatale look + Kellogg's Outfit too. Great job and very deserving of a +1 from this Probs

  • Member
    May 26, 2016
    Thanks dude. Looks my fwd to doing a pretty big update on it once far harbor had been out a while too
  • Member
    October 27, 2016

    Got this one updated with pics & links that work :) I still need to do a highlight reel...sigh.

  • Member
    October 27, 2016

    Motty Skills said:

    Got this one updated with pics & links that work :) I still need to do a highlight reel...sigh.

    Nice! :D