This week the first chapter of Fallout 4 DLC, Automatron, debuted simultaneously across all platforms. Thinking of picking it up? Here’s what you need to know first.
1. It’s robot heavy. Very robot heavy.
Not only does Automatron introduce the ability to craft robot companions, there’s a whole slew of inventive new robot opponents coming after you, too. On the weaker end, there are the humble Eyebot and the Junkbot, and in the mid-range, Duelbots, Scrapbots, and Tankbots, which explode. To really cut through the hordes and maximize damage, use an Energy-based weapon, like a Plasma Rifle or a Laser Pistol. The Gauss Rifle, seen above, is particularly effective.
2. Modifying your robots will be your top priority—and it can be done two ways.
Your new robot companion can be altered both through frame components salvaged from enemy robots, and through new mods made from scavenged items.
For the former, you’ll need to pick up a lot of salvaged robot frame components. The beefed-up Mr. Handy bots will have some of the best items, but check all the robots you kill. The Legendary ones will provide the most unique upgrades.
For the latter, prepare yourself by investing in the Intelligence perk in your skill tree. You will need to invest in as many robot related perks as you can, especially Robotics Expert, so you can craft all the coolest upgrades. This will help in combat, not only as you improve and strengthen the abilities of your new robot companion, but also to distinguish their appearance from attacking robots.
You will also need to build a robot workbench from a regular workbench in one of your settlements. This will happen during the early parts of Automatron. If you cannot find the blueprints for the robot workbench, check the Special section of your Workshop menu options.
3. You can make robots, too.
To maintain them, you’ll need to pick up robot repair kits off the bodies of fallen robots. Your robot sidekick will not act like Dogmeat, Codsworth, or any of your body based meat companions when it comes to falling in battle. Whereas Strong or Nick Valentine will sit on the ground until you kill off your enemies, reviving themselves after danger has passed, once a robot is down, they’re down. You’ll need that robot repair kit to get them working again.
4. DIG THESE CRAZY ROBOT HANDS.
Remember that episode of Futurama where Fry trades his hands with the robot devil? Okay, imagine that, but instead of Fry, it’s your robot companion, and instead of the robot devil, it’s the Sole Survivor, and instead of-—alright, this analogy is getting away from me. The point is, the modifications for your robot’s arm attachments are the best part of Automatron.
Folks, you can give your robot a set of laser gatlings for hands. Minigun hands. Shiskebab hands. Sniper laser hands. Saw blade hands. Nail guns hands. HOOKS. Something called a skull mace—I don’t even know what that it is but it sounds awesome. If you want to back yourself up with some serious robo-fire power, Automatron lets you do it in style.
5. The Mechanist is back.
In Fallout 3 the Lone Wanderer encounters two wannabe superheroes terrorizing the town of Canterbury Commons, The Mechanist and The AntAgonizer. In Fallout 4, you encounter The Mechanist again as they wreak havoc with an army of robots on the Boston Commonwealth.
…or do you? It seems The Mechanist character from the old radio plays inspired more than one Wastelander into vigilante superhero-dom. If you want an extra little thrill, wear the Silver Shroud costume as you finish Automatron for a bonus treat.
Holly Green is a reporter, editor, and semiprofessional photographer living in Seattle, WA. She is also the author of Fry Scores: An Unofficial Guide To Video Game Grub. You can find her work at Gameranx, Polygon, Unwinnable, and other videogame news publications.