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The 20 Best Perk Cards in Fallout 76, Ranked

Like any good action RPG, Fallout 76 allows players to pick and choose from a wide variety of options for how they want to play the game. They can choose to be a melee character, a heavy gunner, a sniper, or much more. This wide range of options is thanks to all of the perk cards in Fallout 76.

Perk cards are special upgrades that can be unlocked by playing the game and leveling up. However, with so many different perk cards in the game, it can be challenging to choose the best ones. In this article, we will be going over and ranking 20 of the best perk cards in Fallout 76!

How to Upgrade Perk Cards in Fallout 76

Pick a perk in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Before we dive into this article, let’s take a moment to talk about something. Many of the perks that we discuss in this ranking will be based on their max rank. Therefore, it’s important that we go over how to upgrade perk cards in Fallout 76 so that you can get the most benefits.

Upgrading a standard perk card is very simple. All you need to do is combine two of the same perk cards together, and this will upgrade it to the next rank. You can get duplicate perk cards by unlocking them randomly through perk card packs (which you can get by leveling up). Or you can simply select a specific card from the perk card menu, which you can also do by leveling up.

As for legendary perk cards, you’ll need to obtain perk coins to upgrade them in Fallout 76. You can obtain a couple perk coins by scrapping standard perk cards, earning more the higher the card’s rank. Once you have enough perk coins, you’ll be able to upgrade your legendary perk cards. You’ll need 300 perk coins to fully upgrade any one of your legendary perk cards in Fallout 76.

Top 20 Perk Cards You Need to Get in Fallout 76

With all that out of the way, let’s dive into this Fallout 76 perk guide, going over the top 20 perks you NEED to get. We’ll be ranking them from good to essential.

20/20

Master Infiltrator

Master Infiltrator
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

First up on our list is Master Infiltrator. This legendary perk card gives users the ability to hack any terminal and lock-pick any lock in Fallout 76! At max rank, you will be able to auto-unlock any terminal or lock-pick you encounter. This is a pretty useful perk, as you would need six separate perk cards in order to unlock any terminal or lock-pick in the game without it.

And being able to auto-unlock them is a REALLY nice quality-of-life feature. The reason why this perk is low on the list is that a lot of times you won’t find anything super useful in some of the containers you unlock. But there are still plenty of circumstances where being able to unlock any door is useful for completing quests or getting rare rewards.

19/20

Professional Drinker

Professional Drinker
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Up next, we’ve got the underrated perk Professional Drinker. What this perk does is make your character immune to alcohol addiction. Now, I know it may not seem all that useful at first, but trust me when I say that it is. You see, many alcoholic drinks in Fallout 76 provide buffs to your SPECIAL stats, which can be incredibly valuable depending on your build. For instance, most booze will increase your strength, making it perfect for melee-oriented characters.

Given that alcohol is quite abundant in the game, it’s definitely worth imbibing it regularly to take advantage of these beneficial effects. While this perk might not be the most powerful one out there, it can become much more practical when paired with other alcohol-related perks. And speaking of those…

18/20

Happy-Go-Lucky

Happy-Go-Lucky
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Moving on to our next perk, we have Happy-Go-Lucky! When maxed out, this special perk increases your luck by three points every time you drink alcohol. If your character doesn’t rely on critical hits, then this perk may not be necessary. However, it’s a must-have for anyone running a VATS build.

Luck increases the recharge rate of your critical meter, which in turn amplifies the damage you inflict with your next shot(s). Thus, having your critical meter recharge faster is incredibly useful. This perk pairs well with the previously mentioned Professional Drinker perk.

17/20

Inspirational

Inspirational
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Moving on to our next pick, we have Inspirational! This is a highly sought-after team-based perk that boosts the amount of experience points you earn while playing with others. It’s particularly useful early on when you’re trying to level up quickly.

What’s great about this perk is that you don’t need to be actively playing with others to reap its benefits. Simply joining a public team hosted by another player will suffice. Public teams are a common occurrence in most sessions, making it incredibly easy to take advantage of this perk.

16/20

Gunsmith

Gunsmith
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

For the next perk card on our Fallout 76 list, we have Gunsmith! When you fully max out this perk, your weapons will degrade 50% slower, and you’ll gain the ability to craft rank 5 gun mods. Both of these bonuses are extremely valuable.

There’s nothing more frustrating than having your weapon break during a fight, especially when repairs can be costly for lower-level players. This perk enables you to avoid that headache as much as possible. Additionally, in order to maximize your gun’s effectiveness, it’s essential to fully upgrade it, which this perk allows you to do.

15/20

Tenderizer

Tenderizer
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Moving onto our next pick, let’s take a moment to talk about Tenderizer. At max rank, this perk will provide an additional +10% damage to any enemy you hit, and the damage boost will last for 10 seconds. While the damage increase may seem a little low, it’s still a great perk to have as it can work with any weapon in the game.

What’s more, it can stack with other players who have the same perk, although the effect maxes out at +40%. I highly recommend getting this perk if you and some other players are planning to take down a boss, as being able to deal more damage is always a good thing.

14/20

Action Boy/Action Girl

Action Boy/Girl
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

For the next perk on this ranking, let’s discuss Action Boy/Action Girl. This is a straightforward perk that boosts your AP recharge rate. At maximum rank, this increases by +45%. If your build relies heavily on action points, then I highly recommend obtaining this perk.

Every time you sprint, swing a melee weapon, or fire your gun in VATS, you consume AP. Consequently, this perk has a lot of usefulness in most scenarios. Running out of AP during a firefight can really suck, so having the ability to quickly recharge it is a real game-changer.

13/20

Sneak

Sneak
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

And up next, we have the Sneak perk. When fully upgraded, your character will be 75% harder to detect when sneaking around. Stealth in Fallout 76 is pretty underrated, despite being one of the most useful mechanics for PvE situations. When undetected, you can perform sneak attacks, which increase the damage done to enemies.

Being able to stay undetected for as long as possible provides a big advantage in PvE situations. I highly recommend the Sneak perk for anyone going for a sniper build, a commando build, or any kind of stealth-based character.

12/20

Bloody Mess

Bloody Mess
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Moving on to our next pick, we have the iconic Fallout perk, Bloody Mess! This is a really simple perk that increases the damage you deal to enemies by +15%. The great thing about this perk is that it works well for ALL builds and doesn’t require you to do anything special in combat to get the +15% damage.

It’s just a flat increase to all damage dealt. And you can’t go wrong with that. To make this already good perk even better, enemies have a small chance of “exploding into a gory red paste.” This doesn’t have any practical uses, but it sure is cool to see!

11/20

Lone Wanderer

Lone Wanderer
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Moving on to our next pick, we have the popular perk Lone Wanderer! This perk is specifically designed for solo players, providing various buffs when traveling alone. At max rank, you will take 20% less damage and your AP regeneration will receive a 30% boost.

This is an excellent way to enhance your stats and negate some of the downsides of traveling alone. If you’re the kind of player who prefers to take on Fallout 76 on your own, then this perk card is an essential pick for you.

10/20

Concentrated Fire

Concentrated Fire - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Next up on this list is the perk Concentrated Fire! What this perk does is allow users to target specific limbs and gain more accuracy with each consecutive shot on the same target in VATS. Targeting limbs is incredibly useful for maximizing damage because it allows you to aim for the head, which takes more damage than the torso.

In addition, the ability to gain more accuracy with each shot is great for hitting long-range targets. I consider this a must-have perk for any precision weapon builds. If you are doing a sniper or a VATS gunslinger, then you need this perk as soon as possible in your playthrough. I run it with my rifleman build, and it is undoubtedly one of the perk cards that I use the most in Fallout 76.

9/20

Gun Fu

Gun Fu - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Taking spot number 9 on our list, it’s the perk Gun Fu! This is a perk that causes you to automatically swap to another nearby enemy after killing an enemy in VATS. Additionally, when you are swapped to the other enemy, you will deal +10% damage. This increases to +20% and then +30% with each subsequent enemy.

This perk is a lot stronger than you may think. Being able to instantly swap to another enemy nearby after killing one makes clearing out groups of enemies much easier. And the damage increase is really great. I highly recommend this perk if you do Daily Ops a lot, as it can be a lifesaver for that.

8/20

Tank Killer

Tank Killer - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

For the next pick on our ranking, let’s discuss the perk Tank Killer. This is a rifle and pistol-based perk card that, at max rank, causes both weapons to ignore 36% of armor with each shot. Additionally, it causes a 9% chance to stagger an enemy.

Being able to ignore some of your target’s armor is always useful as it allows you to deal much more damage against them. The chance to stagger enemies is small and really not that practical. But you’re getting this perk for the anti-armor effects, so this shouldn’t deter you from getting it.

7/20

Stabilized

Stabilized - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

At our next spot, we have the perk Stabilized! This perk is incredibly similar to Tank Killer, but it applies to heavy guns instead of rifles and pistols. If this perk is at max rank and you’re wearing power armor, your heavy weapons will ignore 45% of an enemy’s armor. In addition to that, your weapon will also be noticeably more accurate.

This is a really great perk for heavy gunner builds. Heavy weapons are already pretty strong, so giving them the ability to ignore armor can make them even more powerful. Not to mention, this perk ignores 45% of armor at max level, compared to Tank Killer’s 36%.

6/20

Nerd Rage

Nerd Rage - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

The next perk card on this list is Nerd Rage. This is a pretty iconic perk that has been in the game since Fallout 3. However, it has changed quite a lot since its first debut. With this perk card in Fallout 76, you will gain 40 damage resistance, regenerate action points 15% faster, and dish out 20% more damage.

Of course, this will only occur when you have less than 20% of your health. While this perk has a lot of benefits, forcing you to use those benefits only when at such a low health level is a pretty big trade-off. However, I think that it is worth it, especially if you are doing a glass cannon type of build.

5/20

Follow Through

Follow Through - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Moving on to our next pick, we have the legendary perk card Follow Through! If you’ve reached rank 4 with this perk card, all attacks made on an enemy after a successful sneak attack will deal +40% damage. This effect lasts for a total of 10 seconds and is a significant damage increase!

The only drawback is that you need to successfully perform a sneak attack with your weapon before the effect sets in. However, this isn’t hard to do, especially if you have built your character around stealth. I have been using this perk for quite a while and am really glad to have it, especially when facing bosses.

4/20

Starched Genes

Starched Genes - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

For the next perk card on our list, we recommend Starched Genes. It’s a unique perk that centers around the mutations in the game. If you have rank 2 with this perk, using RadAway will not remove any mutations you have. Additionally, you will not gain any new mutations when taking radiation.

I find this perk incredibly useful and a must-have if you are interested in getting any mutations in the game. There are many great ones, such as one that dramatically increases your jump height and one that rapidly increases your health regeneration. To make these mutations practical, you’ll need this perk.

3/20

Critical Savvy

Critical Savvy - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

Coming up next, we have the perk card Critical Savvy! This perk reduces the amount of critical meter consumed when you land a critical hit. At max rank, this reduction can go up to 50%, allowing you to fire off critical hits much more frequently.

If you are focusing on building a character that relies on dealing damage with critical hits in VATS, then I highly recommend getting this perk. It’s particularly useful for gunslinger and sniper builds. Overall, this is one of the best perk cards for maximizing the effectiveness of critical hits in Fallout 76.

2/20

Better Criticals

Better Criticals - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

For the second spot on this ranking, let’s discuss the perk card Better Criticals. Like Critical Savvy, this is a perk that makes critical hits more useful. At max rank, it DOUBLES the damage that your critical hits do! It makes one-shotting certain enemies in the game almost a guarantee.

This is without a doubt one of my favorite (and best) perk cards in Fallout 76, and I think you should try it out if you haven’t already. Doubling your damage with critical hits is great, but when combined with perks that allow you to recharge your critical meter much faster, it becomes even more powerful.

1/20

Adrenaline

Adrenaline - Best Perks Cards in Fallout 76
Image: Bethesda Game Studios, Bethesda Softworks via HGG / Koby Gibson Ross

As the strongest entry of our list, we have the perk Adrenaline! When fully upgraded and equipped, this perk grants +10% damage for every kill you make. This bonus increases up to a maximum of +60% damage and lasts for 30 seconds.

Adrenaline is an excellent perk that allows you to keep your damage output consistently high. Its ability to last up to 30 seconds makes it particularly effective when facing groups of enemies. Agility-based characters should definitely consider getting this perk, as it can make a significant difference in combat.

Join The High Ground!

So, what did you think of our guide ranking the top 20 perk cards you need to get in Fallout 76? Do you agree with our list?

Be sure to let us know down in the comments! And make sure to subscribe to our weekly newsletter for more. We offer regular content on Fallout 76 and other open-world RPGs.

Happy gaming!

 

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