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Best Fallout: New Vegas mods

Ain’t that a mod in the head

Whenever I get the urge to play a Fallout game, any Fallout game, I end up crossing the Mojave Desert in search of revenge. Fallout: New Vegas’ half-life is longer than the rest of the series to me, because it starts with a simple concept: a bullet to the brain, and a hunt for whodunnit. No vault to escape, no good intentions to follow. Just a desert to wander and a headache to cure. It’s a great RPG that's also over a decade old, and it’s built to be replayed. So let’s do that with mods.

The best Fallout: New Vegas mods

There are all manner of mods available for Fallout: New Vegas these days, and this list covers everything from small, quality-of-life improvements to full-blown extra story content. You can either click the links below to go straight to the mod in question, or you can just carry on reading the whole thing. We also tell you how to actually go about modding Fallout: New Vegas with our step-by-step guide below.


How to mod Fallout: New Vegas

Despite being hosted in the Skyrim Nexus, this version of Mod Organiser 2 works for New Vegas. It’s a great tool to use for modding because it doesn’t change the game files, but instead creates a virtual folder for the mods to run from. Make sure you install it to a large drive, and when the game requests that you set up a new instance it’s best to move it from the default, which is on your C: drive, to somewhere that doesn’t host Windows. Just give it plenty of room.

When it asks you, let it “associate with Nexus Links” so you can click on a mod on the download site and MO2 will grab it. In Settings > Nexus, you can connect your Nexus account to the program, a step that will make everything a lot easier. Anything in the download tab can be double-clicked and installed.

You can now use MO2 to download mods and load games with or without certain mod enabled, and re-order the load order to fix any incompatibilities.

Now, there’s one more step. Download New Vegas Script Extender (NVSE) and drag and drop all the files (except the src and Data folders) into your New Vegas install directory. Do the same with JIP LN NVSE Plugin. They’re needed for a lot of mods.

When you want to load the game MO2 should now show NVSE as the selected game to launch. That’s what you want.


FNV 4GB Patcher by RoyBatterian

This is a housekeeping fix that’ll let the game use more than 2GB of RAM. Drag it into your New Vegas game folder and run it. It’ll patch your game.

Download FNV 4GB Patcher

When you have mods installed that have their own settings to tweak, Mod Configuration Menu provides a single menu that lets you access them all. It’s an essential add-on to a mega-modded New Vegas.

A menu screen showing the Mod Configuration Menu mod in Fallout: New Vegas
Download Mod Configuration Menu

User Interface Organizer by Jazzisparis

Another mod to set and forget. This is used by other mods that change UI elements. Just install it. You won’t have to touch it, and it won’t appear in your load order, but you’ll need it.

Download User Interface Organizer

FOV Slider by Roy Batty

This makes the game playable for me. New Vegas only lets people change the field of view using the in-game console, but FOV Slider enables it properly. You need Mod Configuration Menu, which is where all the settings reside, but you should have that anyway. With it you can change the FOV for first and third-person views, change Pipboy and terminal FOVs, and alter how weapons scale in first-person.

A menu screen showing the FOV Slider mod in Fallout: New Vegas
Download FOV Slider

Vanilla HUD Remastered by BmanBlazer

Monitors have moved on since New Vegas was made. Vanilla HUD Remastered simply cleans up the vanilla HUD, making it sharper and higher res when playing at 1080p and above.

A menu screen showing your HP bar and compass in the Vanilla HUD Remastered mod in Fallout: New Vegas
Download Vanilla HUD Remastered

JIP Minimap by Jazzisparis

Sure, we have the Pipboy, but I kind of hate having to access a map that’s on my in-game wrist by opening it up as a large menu. So I’m fine with JIP Minimap, a mod that adds a map to your screen.

It’ll show you markers, quest locations, and even doors. It’s a cheat, but you can change what it shows, adding fog of war to cover up unexplored portions of the world.

Download JIP Minimap

Project Nevada by Schlangster

If you want to replay vanilla New Vegas with more modern FPS additions while leaving the rest of the game intact, Project Nevada is the best add-on for that. The mod is quite old now, but it’s a series of modules that will enhance the base game, but does not change quests, characters, or haircuts.

The core module will create a richer game. Dynamic crosshairs will spread according to your character’s speed, all the scoped weapons now have multiple zoom steps, you can enable bullet time if you find VATs too fiddly. There are smart little tweaks like using explosives to open locked doors and containers, and columns that’ll let you categorise your inventory.

The Cyberware module adds new enhancements. They cover a whole swathe of areas in the game, affecting your Special levels (Empathy Synthesizer: Charisma +1), regeneration, specific skills like the stabiliser that makes lock-picking easier, and more. They’re spread all over the wasteland.

A Rebalance module lets you change every aspect of how stats affect your playthrough. Everything from levelling speed and level and park caps, to movement, healing, and item rarity is covered. It’s probably the most powerful module in the list, letting you create an entirely customised set of circumstances. The default settings make the game more dynamic, but survival is much harder.

The final module, the Equipment module, adds piles of new weapons and items to the game. Somewhere in the wasteland a flag pole melee weapon is waiting to be swung, remote bombs are hidden, and there’s an Armored Duster to look cool while stalking your murderer.

A man fires a green energy ray out of a gun in the Project Nevada mod in Fallout: New Vegas
Download Project Nevada

Essential Visual Enhancements by Weijiesen and Jonnyeah

What do you consider “essential”? Essential Visual Enhancements, for example, is a massive overhaul of the game’s action effects. Bullet impacts, particle effects, explosions, and more.

It’s the visual equivalent of turning the treble and base right up: fire spat out of a flamethrower looks meaner and scarier, every bullet impact is in HD. It really makes you wince. It’s a proper upgrade to all the weapons, but doesn’t even add any new guns to the game. It just makes them feel deadlier and look better than ever before.

Download Essential Visual Enhancements

FPS Weapon Wheel by Vivanto

If you want to use your mouse scroll wheel to cycle through your weapons, FPS Weapon Wheel lets you do that. It’s a customisable list that lets you cycle between equipped weapons, enabling you to add or remove certain types from the list (melee, grenades, or even weapon types). It’s incredibly handy if you play New Vegas like an FPS. No more hot bar stabbing when a Death Claw is flying at your mug.

A gun is being pointed at a table full of other guns in the FPS Weapon Wheel mod for Fallout: New Vegas
Download FPS Weapon Wheel

Electro City by MyGoodEye

There’s no better way to show humanity returning somewhere than by bringing the light. Electro City’s enhancements return streetlamps back to the wasteland.

With it installed, engineers wander the roads of the Mojave building lampposts and adding a lot of additional ambient lights to the game. They follow the roads, so you’re always able to see at a glance where they are. On the horizon, the Strip glows brighter than ever. It’s handy, as the weather mod below can darken nights somewhat, and it’s evocative.

A man looks up at a tower covered in electric lights in the Electro City mod for Fallout: New Vegas
Download Electro City

Fallout New Vegas Texture Pack by NMC

This is in obsessive mod. One person has painstakingly retextured a lot (but not all, no mod does it all) New Vegas. Fallout New Vegas Texture Pack updates the big picture of the game.

All the roads, landscapes, trees, buildings (exteriors and interiors) and medium to large objects (toolboxes, chairs) have been retextured. The result modernises the backdrop of the game, while leaving all the smaller elements alone. You don’t need to squint to appreciate the cracked asphalt, anymore.

A highly detailed road texture in the New Vegas Texture Pack mod in Fallout: New Vegas
Download Fallout New Vegas Texture Pack

Nevada Skies by Yossarian22

The wasteland weather report calls for dry and dusty from now until the end of time, unless you have Nevada Skies installed. Snow is coming.

It’s a complete weather overhaul, adding up to 400 weather types to the game. They can be pretty extreme, with storms ranging from rain to sand to fire. Each storm has an effect on the player, so getting caught in one is going to chase you inside.

It affects visibility, too. You can use weather to sneak, but it’ll also allow enemies to approach you without much warning.

You have plenty of control over all this, so you don’t need to stand burning in a fire storm if that’s too much. You can also alter the storm’s sounds and night brightness, too.

Download Nevada Skies

Tale of Two Wastelands by TTW Team

Somehow, Tale of Two Wastelands lets you play both Fallout 3 and Fallout: New Vegas as a single game. You obviously need to own Fallout 3 to play it, but it’s worth it.

This is still technically a NV mod, which means that all of the improvements the latter game brought are now part of Fallout 3. Iron sights, survival elements, the ammo bench, and hardcore mode. They’re worth having. You can travel between both games whenever you choose, making an easy transition between the two games. Now you don’t ever need to ponder which one to play. Just install this and you can hop between the two.

Installation is slightly more involved than the other mods. You have an installer you need to run and a few updates to add. And you also need Fallout 3 installed, too. It’s best to follow the instructions on the mod’s homepage.

Download Tale of Two Wastelands by TTW Team

New Vegas Bounties Trilogy by Someguy

A trilogy of mods by Someguy that adds hundreds of quests all over the game. New Vegas Bounties is a remarkable achievement for a modder, with voiced (and very profane) dialogue and a new way of playing the game.

The first part of the trilogy is an introduction to the world of bounty hunting. You’re given targets and told to take them down. Sometimers they’re where they’re supposed to be, other times you need to follow a few clues. It’s never quite as simple as a bullet to the brain, though. Each encounter is a neatly designed battle where NV’s systems will throw bastard-hard mutants between you and your target.

Part two expands on things. Rather than the linear path that the first mod pushed you along, you can collect multiple bounties at once. Each of the 23 new characters you hunt is a boss-level encounter, again. There’s a new companion, and a new area to explore a little. The mod even generates a dozen random encounters.

Part three really shows off everything Someguy has learned about modding. He works elements of his old quests into the fabric of the game, meaning your previous actions have consequences on the story he’s trying to tell. It’s super dark, but it’s also impressive that the world makes sense.

Installing this is a little tricky. They’re separate mods, and each requires a base mod to work. I’m going to link to that base mod. From there you can grab all the other mods linked to on the page.

Download Someguy Master File

New California by Radian-Helix Media

If you want a DLC-sized addon for New Vegas then New California is worth having. It adds a whole new world, hours of voiced dialogue, a new vault, and sets itself up as a prequel to New Vegas.

You start in Vault 18, high in the San Bernardino mountains. Leaving it thrusts you into a nasty civil war that’s raging between Fallout’s standards: the NCR, the raiders, super mutants, and the Enclave. The Vault is probably the strongest element, and really feels like a Fallout game.

New Cali is about two thirds the size of New Vegas. There are six human companions and two robots available, and two new radio stations. Just like the base game, everything seems to come with a quest attached or an upgrade for the players. It’s very much a mod you should install if you like massive battles. There are a few.

It's almost too much. It could use a little editing to make things click together, and it’s a little too linear. But it’s impressive as hell.

A man holds a sword and shield in a grassy plain the New California mod for Fallout: New Vegas
Download New California

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