How to get them: After clearing out the Combat Zone (found in the Theatre District south of Boston Common), talk to her manager, Tommy. He’ll palm her off on you, much to her distaste.
Likes: Before her personal quest, she loves it when you consume chems or alcohol, or have an addiction to them. Cait will also be pleased if you’re selfish and pick locks, or peoples’ pockets. Strangely, a quick way to raise affinity with her is to strip naked and fast travel over the Commonwealth.
Dislikes: Using chems after her personal quest. She doesn’t like helping people out, but also doesn’t like it when you’re outright mean. Don’t have her with you if you’re helping the Minutemen or Railroad, as it’s a quick way for her to lose respect for you.
Perk: Trigger Rush, which increases the regeneration of your AP when your health is below 25%.
Special notes: Let’s take a quick look in the Big Book of Irish Stereotypes. They like booze, fighting and…lock-picking?! Cait is great at picking locks and can open doors of any difficulty, as long as you direct her towards it.
Her personal quest which will be triggered when you reach a certain level of affection. Her quest location is also home to the big guns bobblehead, so it well worth checking out.
How to get them: He’s been waiting for you to come home to Sanctuary Hills for over 200 years, and he’s more than happy to join your adventure when you return at the start of the game.
Likes: You’ll often see Codsworth tinkering with things, and he loves it when you do the same thing, so be sure to spend some time crafting when he’s with you. Being the devoted servant he is, he loves family-oriented actions or speech, and approves of you helping people and being a generally nice person.
Dislikes: Codsworth really doesn’t like it when you steal from people, or murder those who are innocent. He doesn’t like it when you’re selfish (such as asking for more caps) or dishonest. You should also refrain from using drugs around him – it’s not very family friendly.
Romance? No, he’s your butler, bosses shouldn’t be dating their employees. Also, he’s a robot.
Perk: Robot Sympathy. It gives you +10 damage resistance against any energy attacks by robots, which is particularly useful against Assaultrons.
Special notes: Codsworth is a good helping hand in fights as he has no problem getting up close and personal with his flamer and saw.
He will also occasionally hand you water that he’s purified as he travels, which is (Mr) handy when you’re struggling to maintain full health.
How to get them: Curie lives in Vault 81 and has created a cure needed for the Hole in the Wall quest. Finish the quest and she’s all yours.
Likes: As a robot herself, Curie loves it when you’re nice to her mechanical kin. In fact, she loves it when you’re nice to anyone, or if you try to keep the peace. She’s very similar to Codsworth in this sense. It must be a robot thing.
Dislikes: She doesn’t mind if you use chems, but doesn’t like it when you become addicted. She also dislikes stealing, and killing those who don’t deserve it. Just be a good person.
Romance? Yes. Her personal quest will make this less weird…maybe.
Perk: Combat Medic gives you 100 HP if your health is below 10%. This can only be used once a day, so isn’t a replacement for healing items.
Special notes: Curie has a high health level, but unlike other companions, this will not level up with you. Her health surpasses other companions up until you reach around level 50. She will also occasionally hand you stimpaks, making her a worthy companion in fights.
After gaining enough affinity points, Curie will start her personal quest in which she wants a human body. Complete this quest and her HP will rise by around 200 points.
How to get them: Once you get onto the Brotherhood of Steel’s airship, you are given a quest to meet the crew. Danse will be hanging around at this point, and can be asked to be your companion.
Likes: He likes it when you show people that you’re not going to sit back and take whatever they throw at you, so show your strength without taking it too far. As a member of the Brotherhood of Steel, he enjoys you helping them out and playing around with Power Armour. He will appreciate you donning it and jumping off high buildings, the big child.
Dislikes: He hates the Institute and ghouls, so being nice to them will lower your standing with Danse. Refrain from using dry wit in the form of sarcasm, because he just doesn’t get it, nor does he understand how helpful bribes can be during a nuclear apocalypse.
Romance? Yes. He’s a big pussycat, really.
Perk: Know Your Enemy, giving you 20% more damage against ghouls, super mutants and synths; handy if you’re trying to explore the ruins of the Commonwealth.
Special notes: Danse’s Power Armour gives him substantial resistance against damage and energy weapons, and the suit will never deteriorate. You can upgrade individual parts by handing them to him and equipping them, and even these will remain pristine.
He does have a personal quest to complete, and doing so will cause him to upgrade his Power Armour to the X-01.
How to get them: Deacon is part of the Railroad and lives in their HQ. Once you’ve joined them, he’s more than happy to travel with you and lend a hand.
Likes: The Railroad exists to help the synths, so be sympathetic towards them to win Deacon’s approval. Being nice to people in general is always a good shout, and trying to be peaceful when you can’t be nice. As a spy, he is impressed when you pick locks and hack terminals to get what you need.
Dislikes: Threatening people and killing people who aren’t attacking you are both heavily disliked. You should also stay clear of the Brotherhood of Steel, because helping them goes against everything he stands for.
Romance? No. Perhaps he got turned off after following you for a while.
Perk: Cloak and Dagger, which gives you 20% extra sneak attack damage and makes Stealth Boys last 40% longer. Sitting on a roof with your sniper trained on a horde of Super Mutants has never been so easy.
Special notes: Deacon’s speciality is his sneak ability. He’ll rarely ever be seen when crouching close to enemies. There’s no guarantee that he won’t just walk through mines on the floor like everyone else though.
How to get them: You’ll come across him at the Red Rocket truck stop just outside Sanctuary Hills. Ask him and he’ll come with you.
Likes: Dogmeat won’t judge you on any of your actions. Like all dogs, he loves you unconditionally, even if you spend your days murdering innocents and stealing everything they own. What a good boy.
Dislikes: See above.
Romance? No, he’s a dog. That would be all kinds of wrong, even during the apocalypse.
Perk: Attack Dog, but you’ll have to unlock it through the perk chart. Dogmeat will occasionally latch onto an enemy, making it easier for you to hit them in VATS.
Special notes: Apart from being the most wholesome companion you can travel with in the game, Dogmeat will often bark to alert you to items, and can be sent to immobilize enemies, giving you a clear shot at them.
How to get them: Speak to Bobbi No-Nose, a ghoul found in Goodneighbor. She’ll give you a long, drawn-out quest to complete and, once you do, Hancock will be available to you.
Likes: The easiest way to get him to like you is to use chems around him. You should also defend those who are innocent and punish those who deserve it. Similarly to Cait, he likes seeing you in the nude. Be sure to have him with you if you plan on spending time at your settlements as he likes it when you create new buildings for them.
Dislikes: Don’t steal, don’t be unnecessarily mean and don’t try to cure Mama Murphy of her drug addiction. Also, don’t go snooping on his computer, because that’s just rude.
Perk: Isodoped increases the generation of your Critical Hit by 20% if you have 250+ radiation damage. Ironically, this is great when hunting a large number of ghouls.
Special notes: Hancock will often hand over chems, his favourite being Mentats. You should also be careful when dismissing him far away from a settlement, because he’s very likely to be killed on the way home.
Robert Joseph MacCready
How to get them: He’ll be hanging around Goodneighbor, and is happy to be hired for the right price. Luckily, that price can be brought down with an easy speech check.
Likes: He likes throwing his weight around and showing that he’s in charge, so appreciates it when you do the same. Sarcastic and threatening dialogue options are right down his street, as is stealing or demanding more money from people you’re offering your precious time to.
Dislikes: Pointless tasks to help those who can’t help themselves, such as Painting the Town. Also hates getting caught when stealing, and being violent without being provoked, but at the same time you shouldn’t be too lenient with people. He’s a hard man to please.
Perk: Killshot, which gives you a 20% increase on headshot accuracy when in VATS. When the game first came out a bug meant that you would always have 95% accuracy, which would have been a much better perk.
Special notes: The foul-mouthed child you come across in Fallout 3 is all grown up and trying to be a better person. Apparently, this doesn’t stop him stealing for you when directed to, even if he’s in plain sight.
He has a personal quest for you to complete, but you will not gain anything after finishing it, unlike with other companions. You will, however, be able to reach maximum affinity upon completion.
How to get them: Once you’ve found Nick in the quest Unlikely Valentine and sent him back to his office, he’ll start to help you track down your son. After searching Kellogg’s house, he’ll offer his services to you on a full-time basis.
Likes: A detective exists to help people, and Nick expects you to do the same. Be a kind person and try to keep the peace, and Nick will soon look up to you. He does enjoy the odd hacked computer terminal though – how else are you going to solve cases?
Dislikes: Helping the Brotherhood is a big no-no, as is being sarcastic when people are just trying to ask for your help. You shouldn’t threaten people, nor should you enjoy killing, or murder those who are innocent.
Romance? No, he’s far too busy to deal with romance. That and he’s not human. Is he even capable of love? Does he dream of electric sheep? That’s a debate for another time.
Perk: Close to Metal. It gives you one more guess for terminals, and reduces the lockout by 50%. Great for those terminals where all you know is that the word definitely ends with ‘e’.
Special notes: Nick is slightly stronger than other companions, due to his synth body. He will also be able to hack any terminal for you if directed. He will refuse if they belong to someone else, however.
His personal quest is a long one, and he likes if he is allowed to finish it by himself (so rather than fighting at the end, sit back and watch him work out his anger). Incidentally, keep an eye out for any holotape called ‘Eddie Winter’ on your travels, as it’ll save you a lot of time during the quest.
How to get them: After helping Piper enter Diamond City, join her for an interview, and she’ll oofer to travel with you straight away. There’s no better way to get front page news than trawling the Commonwealth, after all.
Likes: From the very first time you meet Piper, you realise how full of sarcasm she is, and you would do well to be the same. As a journalist, she appreciates when you work to uncover the truth and maintain the peace. So be nice, but don’t be a doormat. And pick any unowned locks you come across.
Dislikes: Lying, bribing and stealing from anyone, including picking owned locks. Like many other companions, she hates senseless murder, so only kill people if you’re sure they’re deserve it. Or if they’re gross bugs.
Perk: Gift of Gab, aptly named. This will give you double the XP when discovering new locations or successfully persuading people. A nice little bonus if you’re pouring all your skill points into Charisma.
Special notes: Piper seems to understand that the best thing for getting through a hard day’s work is sweets, and will often hand some over you. She can also carry a little more than other companions, making her a great mule.
How to get them: He’ll tag along after you finish the first Minutemen quest. This will involve heading to a new settlement and clearing out some nearby raiders. Be prepared though, as this starts a never-ending line of settlements that invariably need your help.
Likes: You’re the General of the Minutemen, so you should be trying to help people when you can. The quickest way to get him on your side is to modify weapons; for some reason, just watching you do that makes him appreciate you more.
Dislikes: Anything considered bad or disruptive, such as murdering people, stealing from them, or asking them for caps when you can offer your services for free. You should also keep your Fat Man at home, because he considers it overkill.
Perk: United We Stand, giving you extra damage resistance of 20 points and +20% damage dealt when fighting three or more enemies at the same time, which is pretty much always.
Special notes: Occasionally people will recognise Preston and give him items or caps to support his cause. You can take these out of his inventory and keep them for yourself.
Preston doesn’t have his own personal quest, but will often give you Minutemen quests to help settlements across the Commonwealth.
How to get them: Rescue him and Rex Goodman from Trinity Tower, and he’ll repay you by fighting alongside you. To start this quest, listen to the radio message on your Pip Boy when passing by the Tower.
Likes: Strong hates humans and loves violence, so don’t be afraid to gun down everyone in your path, even if they’re innocent. Feel free to eat them when you’re down too; Strong likes seeing the cannibal in you. He loves it when you murder settlers in front of another companion, but also likes to see you helping them out.
Dislikes: Despite his dislike of humans, he doesn’t appreciate you stealing from them in any way. He also doesn’t like when you use human technology such as Power Armour (though he doesn’t mind the first one you find in Concord). Basically, don’t be too mean to people when they’re alive, but killing them is fair game.
Romance? No. Would you really want to?
Perk: Beserk, which gives you +20% melee damage if your health is under 25%. A decent perk if you’re cornered and unable to get your gun out currently.
Special notes: As his name suggests, Strong has a high HP that will continue to grow as you level up. He can also carry much more than most other companions can.
If you’re trying to remain stealthy, don’t bring Strong along as he will refuse to sneak, instead opting to charge towards any enemies.
How to get them: If you follow the Institute storyline, you’ll eventually be named director. Once this has happened, you can ask X6-88 to come with you.
Likes: Working with the Institute, obviously. He also likes it when you display technical abilities, such as modifying armour and weapons, and hacking computers. He’s not the biggest fan of humans in the Commonwealth, so enjoys seeing you threatening them or being a general bad person.
Dislikes: X6-88 doesn’t enjoy seeing the Commonwealth improve, so would rather you don’t help anyone around there. This includes donating items that you own, and helping the Minutemen. You should also keep the drugs at bay when trying to impress him.
Romance? Does not compute.
Perk: Shield Harmonics. It gives you a 20-point increase in energy resistance, which is helpful at the end of the game when everyone seems to have discovered energy weapons at the same time.
Special notes: He is the only companion who can be taken into the Institute. However, be careful if you have him as a companion and later become an enemy of the Institute, as he will become hostile to you and any nearby settlers.