The Outer Worlds may not quite be the largest RPG we’ve ever seen, but it sure does have a great deal of stuff to explore and experiment with, from the first moments (or in my case, half-hour) of character creation to the many different quests, enemy types, combat mechanics, stories, and interconnected systems you’ll encounter throughout your travels.
Lucky for you, our The Outer Worlds guide series looks to furnish you with all the information you need, starting with the below 25 The Outer Worlds tips and tricks on everything from dialogue options to Workbenches.
The Outer Worlds guide contents
- How to play (1-5)
- Character & Skills (6-10)
- Items & Equipment (11-15)
- Companions & Conversations (16-20)
- Combat & Stealth (21-25)
25 The Outer Worlds tips and tricks for beginners
We’ve split the below The Outer Worlds tips into five sections, to help inject some structure into this chaotic tangle of systems and concepts. First, we’ll go over the basic information about the game: what it is, how it works, the usual gubbins. After that, we’ll give you some food for thought on your character and how to upgrade them over time; then the various different items and equipment at your disposal; then information on your companions and how conversations and dialogue skills work; and finally, some useful tips on combat, stealth, and dealing with enemies.
These first few tips are here to give you a quick overview of The Outer Worlds itself; what kind of game it is and the sort of experience you’re in for.
- 1) The Outer Worlds is a sci-fi first-person RPG. It is most reminiscent of games in the Fallout or Mass Effect series. Expect lots of conversation, lots of shooting, and lots of learning about this strange and hostile new universe.
- 2) The entirety of The Outer Worlds’s story is set in a solar system on the other side of the galaxy from our own, where mega-corporations are in full control of the fledgeling colonies – and the people attempting to survive from day to day – on Halcyon, Monarch, and the other planets in the system.
- 3) You were one of many stranded after a colony ship’s faster-than-light drive encountered issues, and failed to arrive at their destination. Thousands of people were left in cryo-sleep – but you are the first to have been awakened, nearly a century after going under.
- 4) The Outer Worlds is developed by Obsidian Entertainment – creators of the Pillars of Eternity series, Fallout: New Vegas, and Star Wars Knights of the Old Republic II: The Sith Lords. So it’s fair to say they’ve had a lot of experience crafting open-world RPGs. The Outer Worlds is the first game set in its universe.
- 5) The Outer Worlds is purely a singleplayer experience. It is not the largest RPG we’ve ever seen (which may be a selling point for many people), but it features a long string of primary missions and a huge number of side quests to busy yourself with. There are also several factions that you can interact with, which you can find out more about by looking at our The Outer Worlds reputation guide.
Character & Skills – The Outer Worlds tips
Now let’s get stuck into your character in The Outer Worlds, and all the different ways you can customise and upgrade them.
- 6) Character creation is an essential part of many RPGs, and The Outer Worlds is no exception. Much of your character’s focus and leaning throughout the campaign is determined by how you assign points to your six primary attributes: Strength, Dexterity, Intelligence, Perception, Charm, and Temperament. These values will affect the values of all your skills.
- 7) Skills are another core aspect of your character. As you level up your character, you’ll be able to assign points to various different skills, unlocking certain threshold bonuses once you hit 20, 40, 60, 80, or 100 points in a certain skill. For full details on both Skills and Attributes, be sure to check out our The Outer Worlds Skills guide.
- 8) Perks are the third core means by which you can customise and upgrade your character. Every second level you’ll be able to pick a new Perk, and each Perk out of the 42 available to you will give you a substantial bonus or benefit, whether to combat or carrying capacity or one of many other things. Check them all out over on our The Outer Worlds perks & flaws guide.
- 9) How do you level up your character? By earning experience (XP). As you might expect if you’ve played games of this ilk before, you earn XP from a variety of different things – but most of the time it’ll be from defeating enemies and completing (or advancing) quests.
- 10) However, there is another system in place regarding the customisation of your character: The Outer Worlds’ unique Flaws system, also found in our Perks & Flaws guide. If certain bad things happen to you a certain number of times, the game may offer you a flaw based on that bad thing that happened. For example, if you get caught one too many times in Restricted Areas, you may be offered the Paranoid flaw, which decreases my personality attributes; but if you accept, you’ll be given a Perk point to immediately spend on a Perk of your choice! Often it’s a good idea to accept these flaws when they arrive – and after all, it simply makes the game more interesting. Read more about flaws in our Perks guide linked above.
Items & Equipment – The Outer Worlds tips
Your character in The Outer Worlds is only as good as the weapons and armor (and other useful things) you equip them with. These tips will explain everything that is available to help you stay alive and on top of the difficulty curve.
- 11) There’s a lot to talk about with The Outer Worlds weapons, which is why it’s best to just point you towards our dedicated The Outer Worlds Weapons guide. There you’ll learn all about the different weapon types, ammo types, and (very importantly) how different Damage Types such as Shock and Corrosion can be more or less effective against certain kinds of enemies you may encounter.
- 12) Armor not only provides you with increased Armor Rating, which reduces the damage you take from all sources, but it also often gives you substantial boosts to a particular skill. Heavy Armor provides the highest Armor Rating, but Light Armor provides the best skill boosts. For full details check out our The Outer Worlds Armor guide.
- 13) As well as weapons and armor, you’ll also have access to your Inhaler – which is basically your emergency heal. Take a puff and you’ll quickly regenerate a portion of your Health – but if you increase your Medical skill, you’ll unlock additional slots where you can add more consumables to your Inhaler, giving you the effects of all of them at once with each puff! You can also go into your Inventory and use any consumable item on its own from there. Consumables can mean the difference between life and death in certain situations, so be sure to plan ahead and use them wisely. We have a The Outer Worlds consumables guide to help with learning a little more about them.
- 14) You’ll find Workbenches scattered around every region in The Outer Worlds – and you’ll also find one on-board your ship, the Unreliable. These Workbenches are pivotal in helping you to upgrade and maintain the effectiveness of your weapons and armor. You can tinker them to improve their level; you can repair them back up to full durability (else they’ll lose their effectiveness over time); and you can even attach mods to certain weapons and armor to give you additional buffs and positive effects. Our The Outer Worlds Mods & Workbench will show you exactly how to make full use of the Workbench.
- 15) As you go about looting everything that isn’t bolted down to a surface, you’ll find your inventory can’t hold them all. So you have a few choices: you can either store them on your ship (or in some other safe location); you can sell them at a vending machine or vendor; or (and perhaps most usefully), you can break down weapons for Weapon Parts and armor for Armor Parts. Both these things are used to repair your equipped weapons and armor, so it’s good to have a decent stock of them!
Companions & Conversations – The Outer Worlds tips
Companions and dialogue both play an enormous (interconnected) role in The Outer Worlds. These tips will explain how both work and how they can affect one another.
- 16) There are six Companions waiting for you amongst The Outer Worlds, and our The Outer Worlds Companions guide will show you how to find them. Once you have accepted them onto your crew, up to two will be able to accompany you at a time on your travels, lending a hand in both combat and other aspects of the game. You can even give Companions direct orders to move to a location, regroup, or target a specific enemy.
- 17) If you increase your Inspiration skill up to 20+, then you’ll unlock each Companion’s unique special combat ability. These are powerful abilities with special effects that can change the tide of a losing battle if used correctly. Each Companion also has access to unique Perks of their own which you can select to upgrade them as they level up.
- 18) Companions are very useful, but you don’t have to have them accompany you if you don’t want them! When you proceed to a new area, simply uncheck any Companions on the Companion selection screen, and you’ll enter the region alone. This is useful if you don’t want to bother with ordering about other party members – plus, if you pick up the Lone Wolf Perk (tier 1), you’ll gain a significant increase in the damage you deal when you’re the only one in your party!
- 19) It’s not all about shooting things in The Outer Worlds. Much like any other RPG, conversations are paramount to learning more about situations and the worlds around you. And in almost every conversation you can have, there will be opportunities to make use of your dialog-related skills: Persuade, Lie, and Intimidate. Not only will you find that high values of these skills will open certain dialogue options to you, but they’ll also (once levelled beyond 20) give you unique combat benefits as well.
- 20) If you want to see the full range of dialogue options at every point in a conversation (even if you don’t meet the requirements), you can do so by heading into the UI settings and changing “Show Dialog Skill Stats” to “Always”. This gives you a better idea of the values needed in these skills to become truly useful.
Combat & Stealth – The Outer Worlds tips
Finally, let’s go over some of the main aspects of stealth, combat, and dealing with enemies and other obstacles during your ventures through The Outer Worlds.
- 21) As mentioned previously, a very important part of preparing for an upcoming fight is ensuring you are using the right Damage Type. Learn more about the different Damage Types in our The Outer Worlds Weapons guide – but here’s a useful tip in the meantime: as long as you have the damage numbers enabled during battles, you can see if an enemy is heavily resistant to the Damage Type you’re using if you see the damage numbers drift downwards instead of upwards. If you see this, better switch tactics!
- 22) It’s not all about shooting and bashing and dodging and blocking in The Outer Worlds. As a result of your revival process on the Hope colony ship, you have access to what is called TTD (Tactical Time Dilation). This is very similar to Fallout’s V.A.T.S. system; activate TTD to slow time to a crawl, allowing you to plan ahead and act with pinpoint precision. The more you act while using TTD, the faster it drains, so try to be efficient and clinical. The other thing to bear in mind is that while using TTD you can hover over enemies to learn more about their base stats, strengths, and weaknesses – and with a high enough skill relating to your choice of weapon, you’ll be able to target specific parts of the enemy to inflict different debuffs. The full details are in our The Outer Worlds TTD Debuffs guide.
- 23) Another important aspect of maximising your damage potential is the idea of headshots and weak points in enemies. For humanoids, taking shots to the head will be far more damaging than taking shots to the chest. For certain other enemies, headshots will be ineffective and you’ll have to figure out where their weak spot is. Certain Perks and effects (and whole builds) revolve around weak point damage, so it’s best to experiment and gain a good understanding of each enemy’s weak spots.
- 24) Melee combat in The Outer Worlds, while certainly no Mordhau, is a little more intricate and in-depth than you might expect from a game like this. Not only are there combos that differ for one-handed and two-handed melee weapons, and the ability to block to reduce incoming damage, but with a high enough value in the relevant Melee skill, you’ll be able to do a Perfect Block – which means timing your block just as the attack hits you – in order to briefly stun your opponent. This is a very useful (and in the higher difficulties, essential) skill to learn if you are focusing on melee combat.
- 25) But for those who aren’t particularly interested in always having to fight their way into and out of situations, you can use Stealth to bypass this completely. Utilise long grass and line of sight to avoid attracting attention, and invest in Perks and items that make you quieter and deadlier while unseen. It’s entirely possible to avoid most encounters that otherwise would have required violence. You can also use disguises, which you can look at in more detail in our The Outer Worlds holographic disguises guide.
The Outer Worlds guide series
There you have it! Those are our 25 top tips for players just beginning their journey through The Outer Worlds. Hopefully, a few questions and confusions have been cleared up by this point – but if you’re after more information on a more specific aspect of Obsidian’s latest RPG, take a look below at our ever-expanding guide series on The Outer Worlds!
- The Outer Worlds Skills – You only get one shot at setting up your first character, so this guide will ensure you pick the right attributes and skills first time!
- The Outer Worlds supernova survival tips – Fancy some tips for The Outer Worlds on its hardest difficulty?
- The Outer Worlds perks & flaws – Perks are extremely powerful ways of improving your character. Learn how to make best use of them (and the associated Flaws system!).
- The Outer Worlds Companions – Learn all about the six Companions dotted about The Outer Worlds, how to find and recruit them, and how useful they can be.
- The Outer Worlds Weapons – Make sure you’re well-equipped for the fights ahead with our wepaons guide, which will explain weapon types, damage types, and much more!
- The Outer Worlds Armor – Just as important as weapons is your choice of Armor. We’ll go over how Armor Rating actually works, and the different types of Armor available.
- The Outer Worlds Mods & Workbench – The Workbench is one of the most useful tools at your disposal for upgrading your gear. Learn how to make full use of it here!
- The Outer Worlds TTD Debuffs – It’s not quite the same as VATs in Fallout, but the TTD has its own uses that you should learn how to use effectively.
- The Outer Worlds PC requirements and how to get the best performance – Learn which graphics settings you can switch off or turn down to give your PC’s performance a big frame rate boost.
- The Outer Worlds holographic disguises – Discover where to find all of the holographic disguises and ID cartridges.
- The Outer Worlds science weapons – Find all five locations for the science weapons in The Outer Worlds.
- The Outer Worlds reputation – All of the reputation statuses found so far and what it all means.
- The Outer Worlds consumables – Learn how to heal efficiently using inhalers in The Outer Worlds.