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Character Build: The Ringleader (FO4)

Tags: #Fallout 4 Build  #Character Build Craftsman  #Character Build Grenadier  #Character Build Big Guns  #Mannatee Build 
  • Member
    January 13, 2017

     Hello Vault Dwellers! This build is actually my first character build I've ever done so please do not withhold a single word of advice or criticism as I will gladly take all I can get.  I hope to get to post many more in the future. Now on to being a mercenary leader badass with explosions and miniguns!

    The Ringleader



        As someone who typical leans towards a safe sneaky snipey type playthrough, I decided to take a go at something with a little more intensity and explosions. What I created was essentially a low charisma mercenary leader who thrives on supporting and sustaining his comrades. This is accomplished with the use of chems, heavy weapons, grenandes, and companion coordination. With both intense gameplay (low armor but heavy weapons) and potential for immersive roleplay, I'm sure anyone who tries this build will have a blast. 


     “Did I ever tell you guys about my time as Lieutenant Colonel of the 2nd Battalion, 108th Infantry Regiment? I wasn’t really the outspoken, bravado leader type; but I kept people alive and efficient. To know how to get the job done while still bringing your soldiers home to their families at the end of it all is to be both the strong-armed leader as well as the brother-in-arms. You see, we all love caps, bullets, and the ever too frequent blood, but you can all trust in me to make sure you live long enough to enjoy it. Simply follow my lead” -Speech by the Ringleader to his crew

       With a past in military command, the Ringleader, despite not being very charismatic, is fully equipped with the skills needed to organize a small group of mercenaries.  He is followed not for his charismatic leadership but rather his ability to keep those under him alive; and for someone who just awoke to a post apocalyptic wasteland, that’s a tough thing to do.


    Strength (9)

    As a user of heavy weapons this is one of the primary stats for this build. Using the S.P.E.C.I.A.L. book on our original 8 points allows us to get the rooted perk which I will go into detail about later

    Perception (5)

    V.A.T.S. is rarely ever used for this build however by getting the bobble head in Concord we can have the Demolitions Expert Perk ready to go right off the bat

    Endurance (4)

    Four points here allows us to have access to Life Giver and Chem Resistant which we need to avoid being too squishy as well as not letting caps get wasted on addictol and doctor visits

    Charisma (1)

    Surprised to find a low charisma mercenary build? Well, I imagine this former militant to be more of an intellectual with a big heart for those under his command rather than a silver-tongued charmer. This means he won’t be doing much persuasion for better pay for jobs

    Intelligence (9)

    This is the second primary attribute, and it allows the Ringleader to ensure that both he and his companions have the most up to date weaponry, medicines, and chems. The bobblehead is something you can pick up while doing a job for Daisy in Goodneighbor.

    Agility (1)

    Least important attribute for this build; melee, vats, and automatic rifles are all practically unused. The one major downside of this is that the lack of AP makes traveling on foot take a little longer. Oh well, I’d expect that from someone carting a Gatling Laser and Minigun everywhere.

    Luck (2)

    Idiot Savant is unused as well as criticals so these points are purely for the sake of getting Scrounger (and you’ll want it, trust me)

                                                                             “Whoever is under a man’s power is under his protection, too”

                                                                                                    Level 40

    (Listed in general order of acquisition)

    -Rifleman 4/5; Rifles are primarily focused on early game (since heavy ammo is hard to come by) but are often weaved into combat late game as well

    -Heavy Gunner 4/5

    -Strong Back 2/4; Your comrades are great pack mules for junk but heavy weapons still take up a lot of space and constantly stopping to trade with your companion can be a pain

    -Life Giver 3/3

    -Gun Nut 4/4; As the leader it’s your job to make sure you and your mercenary group are always up to date on weaponry to give yourself an edge in combat

    -Demolition Expert 4/4; Oh how I love explosives. A well tossed frag grenade is sometimes all it takes to avoid getting killed by just about any opposition you face. Remember to be wary of your squad mates. You’re job is to support them not blow them to bits.

    -Science 3/4; Needed for all the high tech weaponry you’ll be using. Down the road it might be wise to grab the fourth rank so the Gatling Laser can be further enhanced

    -Scrounger 2/4; One of the main struggles with using heavy weapons is being able to have a constant supply of ammunition. Get this perk as soon as you can so later on there will be plenty of ammo for when you need it most. Also don’t forget that companions need ammo to use any gun you give them

    -Medic 2/4; Serving the role of support, the Ringleader must have medical skills to get his comrades back on their feet as well as keep himself alive

    -Rooted 2/3; Although this may seem rather strange since melee is completely untouched, the damage resistance provided when standing still allows for the Ringleader to defensively “take a stand” as he lays down fire. Just don’t forget you have it, sometimes you’re better off standing still and firing than trying to bob and weave around bullets.

    -Scrapper 1/2; caps shouldn’t be wasted for things like screws and copper

    -Chem resistant 2/2; debuffs from addiction during combat are both annoying and dangerous

    -Chemist 1/4

    -Cap Collector 1/3; Heavy weapons ammo is expensive and it can be irksome to finish a job only to have all the caps earned from it just wasted on replacing all the ammo just used. At least get a good deal with your suppliers

    -Lockpicking 1/3; Down the road Cait can be used for lockpicking but don’t miss out on getting ammo from safes with advanced locks early on

    -Nuclear Physicist 2/3; allows the Gatling Laser to last longer

    -Toughness; I stayed away from this perk because I wanted the build to have a more squishy feel however down the road as enemies get stronger it might be smart to invest here


    The Ringleader uses a mixture of explosives, Heavy weapons, and semi-long range rifles to support his troops and will often switch between loadouts at his home base to suit whatever task he is fulfilling. Early game focus on having the most powerful rifles you can get your hands on and any combination of metal and leather armor is sufficient. The laser musket is used throughout the entire playthrough. Also be sure to keep an automatic 10mm pistol on you at all times in case a ghoul or something gets too close while reloading your gun. However the “endgame” gear is as follows:


    -Gatling laser

    -Triple/Quad barrel missile launcher

    -.50 Cal. Sniper Rifle (Silenced)

    -6 Crank Laser Musket (often interchanged with the Sniper Rifle)

    -Scoped Assault Rifle; At first the plan was to use the combat rifle but I later decided to opt for the Assault Rifle because of its “Support Gun” feel as well as not coming across as another sniper rifle when a scope is put on.

    -Ashmaker(Tri Barrel); this is a unique Minigun that can be obtained from the quest The Big Dig which will inevitably be completed in the process of recruiting Hancock to your crew.

    -Any grenades/mines



    When the Ringleader defeats Kellogg, a very successful mercenary, he decides to wear Kellogg’s Outfit as a sign of being of higher caliber than the average mercenary. Also it looks badass. Wearing Medical Goggles and a Red Bandana (or whatever one you think looks the best) along with Kellogg’s Outfit makes for a very aesthetically pleasing look as well as still ensuring that armor rating stays nice and low (more vulnerable > more dangerous combat > need for strategy > more intense > more fun!)

                                                            The Ringleader and his right-hand man, Macready, scout downtown Boston





                Okay, elephant in the room: Companions are typically pretty garbage when it comes to combat. Trust me, I’ve seen Macready miss 5 shots at a Gunner who was kneeling on the ground a few feet away, and this guy is supposed to be Mr. Sharpshooter. So don’t expect your companions to really carry their own weight around too often, but for the sake of roleplay, great one-liners, and the occasional epic moment just keep them with you. The companions actually add a great roleplay aspect to this build, the whole beginning of the game is essentially a search for tough and loyal fighters to join your band of mercenaries. The best ones are Hancock(charismatic gunslinger), Strong (Melee/Berserk), Macready (Sharpshooter), and Cait (Shotguns and chems). Make sure to space out your acquisition of them, as this is one of the more fun parts of the roleplay. Be sure to swap out who you travel with and even coordinate it according to the tasks you plan to complete. The others you can have hang out at your Forward Operating Base and stand guard. For this I recommend Egret Tours Marina because it already comes with a weapons workbench and has some cool structures for building a home base. Don’t forget to give your mercenary group a sick name (Mine are the Wasteland Wanderers)

    The Ringleader approaches every situation tactically; always preparing with the right weapons, companion, and plan of attack to ensure a safe and swift success. Rarely does he simply do things on the fly, he plans and executes always ensuring the safety of his companions by either taking out dangerous targets, providing cover fire/ a distraction, or using medical skills to keep them on their feet. Chems are often used to allow for a tactical advantage in tough situations. A favorite is Psycho Jet for powerful and precise shots/grenade throws. Also don’t be afraid to use the missile launcher often. It is REALLY powerful and REALLY fun, I hardly ever had below 60 rockets and I used the Missile Launcher rather often. Just remember: it’s tactics, not armor, that wins battles.

                *potential spoilers*

         Ultimately the Ringleader isn’t just another Gunner who will do the worst of the worst jobs while demanding high pay. To set himself apart, the Ringleader shows some moral guidance within his choosing of clients and jobs and offers a fair price to those in need. Now because the main quest requires you to pick a faction I essentially recommend not carrying it out after you defeat Kellogg. After all the Ringleader has basically established a faction of his own in which he’s already the leader. So despite not really having much as far as friends, the Ringleader definitely has found himself being an enemy of the Gunners and the Brotherhood of Steel. The Gunners are rival mercenaries competing with you for caps and the Brotherhood disgusts you with their stern disregard for both Super Mutants (Strong) and Ghouls (Hancock). Also they’re a bunch of greedy bastards. They don’t deserve to butt themselves into the Commonwealth. Feel free to take down Paladin Danse and his crew. Also I recommend attacking the Boston Airport a few times after the Prydwen arrives to get the Medical Goggles and a Gatling Laser (might have to wait a few levels). Think of it as a raid for supplies if you'd like.

          As far as quests in general go there really are a lot of options so I won't even specify, after all the Ringleader is a mercenary so if theres caps involved then go for it. As I mentioned for the main quest, I choose not to stick with it through my play through but if you really want to do the main quest I'd say go with the Railroad. Even if their goals don't exactlty line up with yours, you can still work for them for the pay. Plus having friends in dark places is always a boon.

    So that’s it! Thank you so much if you read through it all and please give me any feedback you have. If you try it out I hope you enjoy playing as much as I did

  • Member
    January 14, 2017
    Welcome to the fallout cb group!!! I absolutely love this! Since there are quite a handful of builds in our group, Motty and I organized a tag system to sort builds. Every build needs a game tag and up to three playstyle tags. You can find out how to tag your build here http://tamrielvault.com/groups/topic/view/group_id/14/topic_id/8310. You add tags to your build by clicking the edit button between close and delete near the title. The armor combo you picked is a very nice one so consider adding it to our Mecha-Armor Combo Catalogue http://tamrielvault.com/groups/topic/view/group_id/14/topic_id/8325.
  • Member
    January 14, 2017

    Noodles said: Welcome to the fallout cb group!!! I absolutely love this! Since there are quite a handful of builds in our group, Motty and I organized a tag system to sort builds. Every build needs a game tag and up to three playstyle tags. You can find out how to tag your build here http://tamrielvault.com/groups/topic/view/group_id/14/topic_id/8310. You add tags to your build by clicking the edit button between close and delete near the title. The armor combo you picked is a very nice one so consider adding it to our Mecha-Armor Combo Catalogue http://tamrielvault.com/groups/topic/view/group_id/14/topic_id/8325.

    Thank you for being so helpful Noodles! You definitely keep the fallout group going. Ill add the tags right away. I'll also fix my title, looks like i got it out of order haha. Also I'd be happy to contribute to the armor catalogue. Thanks!

  • Member
    January 14, 2017
    Hey, I'm just doing the best I can in my spare time! :D Thanks! One thing though, the last tag should be Character Build Big Guns.
  • January 15, 2017

    Edana said:

    If you have photoshop and want some tips on getting rid of that pesky watermark on your perkspread (which is awesome, btw) let me know. :)

    I noticed this on your wip thread on the front feed earlier today. Don't know if you wanted a watermark-less image or not, but if you did... here it is ;D

  • Member
    January 15, 2017

    Holy crap dude thank you so much! I'll have to learn how to do that kind of stuff, but thank you for the help. Ill swap it out right now

  • January 15, 2017
    Happy to help... it was an easy image to work with ;D
  • Member
    January 29, 2017

    Glad to see the WiP successfully transferred! Awesome stuff and I'm especially glad to see another Heavy Gunner build on the vault!