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I know the task was difficult, but I needed you to see firsthand how dangerous a rogue synth can be.Father

Synth Retention is an Institute main quest in Fallout 4.

Quick walkthrough

Institute main quest: Synth Retention
Talk to Father.
Meet X6-88 outside Libertalia.
Get to the top of Gabriel's boat.
Reclaim Gabriel and kill his bodyguards.
Return to Father.
Visit your quarters.
Reward: 200+ XP
Quarters in the Institute
Leads to: The Battle of Bunker Hill

Detailed walkthrough

Speak with Father about the Institute, he will request help dealing with a renegade synth turned raider at Libertalia. There will be a courser companion at Nahant Wharf or the shore northeast of Nordhagen Beach, depending on from which direction the player comes, who needs to be collected first. Once he is collected, fight along with the network of ships until the target is reached. Upon entering the cabin, the courser companion, X6-88 will initiate a conversation and provide Gabriel's recall code.

On reaching the top of the ship Gabriel will initiate conversation, and no matter what, a fight will break out. Using the synth's factory reset code will disable Gabriel and keep the fight limited to a few raiders. There are a couple of persuasion checks that give extra choices like the password for the Master locked terminal that can open a nearby safe. Once the fight is over, X6-88 will teleport out with Gabriel.

The player character can kill Gabriel, much to X6-88's dismay. This will also trigger different dialogues from many of the Institute scientists and Father. Upon returning to the Institute there will be another discussion with Father, and he will provide quarters for the Sole Survivor. Upon entering them, the mission is complete, and the Battle of Bunker Hill begins.

Quest stages

Quest stages
StageStatusDescriptionLog Entry
5 Talk to Father
200 Meet up with the Courser X6-88Shaun asked me to help reclaim a rogue synth who's taken over a raider gang. I'll meet up with a Courser at Libertalia to begin the mission.
300 Reclaim Gabriel the Rogue SynthShaun asked me to help reclaim a rogue synth who's taken over the raider gang at Libertalia. I've joined forces with a Courser named X6-88, and together we'll confront the raiders and bring the synth home.
600 Return to FatherShaun asked me to help reclaim a rogue synth who's taken over the raider gang at Libertalia. Unfortunately, the rogue synth was destroyed. Now I need to return to Shaun and tell him that the mission was a failure.
800 Visit your QuartersThe mission to reclaim the rogue synth at Libertalia is over, and Shaun has asked me to visit the personal quarters he had prepared for me. He said that I would find a stock of useful supplies waiting for me there.
1000Quest finishedQuest complete
1500Quest failedQuest failed

Companion reactions

Tell X6-88 it's inhumane to destroy Gabriel's identityDislikesLikeLikeHatesLoveLikeDislikesLikeNo reactionLikeLoveN/A
Tell X6-88 you would like to avoid violenceDislikesLikeLikeHatesLikeDislikesDislikesLikeNo reactionHatesLikeN/A
Be sarcastic with X6-88LikeNo reactionHatesNo reactionNo reactionLikeLikeNo reactionLikeN/A
Convince Gabriel they have your wordLikeDislikesDislikesHatesLikeDislikesLikeLikeDislikesDislikesLikeN/A
Tell Gabriel I don't think soLikeHatesNo reactionLikeLikeLikeLoveLikeN/A
Ask Gabriel what if you refuseNo reactionNo reactionNo reactionNo reactionLoveLikeN/A
Take Gabriel's loot by forceLikeDislikesHatesDislikesLikeLikeDislikesDislikesN/ALove


  • When meeting up with X6-88, he may be under attack from a Brotherhood of Steel team and a Vertibird. The Brotherhood members will not be hostile to the Sole Survivor unless they are already an enemy of the Brotherhood of Steel. Since X6-88 is essential, he cannot lose the fight but will continue to fight ad infinitum. If this happens, proceed to Gabriel: X6-88 will teleport to the Sole Survivor upon entering the captain's cabin at the top of the ship, and the quest will progress from there.
  • There appears to be a disconnection between the affinity changes generated and the actually spoken responses, for many of the companions. For example, Nick Valentine "loves" saying it would be more humane to kill Gabriel than use the recall code, but states "I think you and I got real different definitions of 'humane'" which implies he should not like this choice. Further along, Danse "hates" refusing Gabriel's bribe or electing to take his loot by force, yet his spoken responses are "A wise choice, soldier," and "This is going to be a pleasure," respectively. Additionally, Curie dislikes reclaiming B5-92, yet she comments when asked that he "deserves this fate."
  • It is possible to clear the area without the help of X6-88. To do so, simply do not speak to him and proceed to the cabin on top of the ship. The quest will proceed normally once inside the cabin interior.


  • PCPC Playstation 4Playstation 4 Xbox OneXbox One X6-88 may not appear next to the player's quarters at the Institute, preventing the final objective from being completed.[verified]
    • This can be fixed by fast-traveling back to Libertalia, locating X6-88 (he will mostly at all times be located at a small boat directly between Libertalia and Nordhagen Beach), and begin shooting him. After he takes some damage, the game will prompt the quest as completed.
    • PCPC Alternatively, open the console and type e210a.moveto player while standing in front of your quarters. Close the console and open it again, which will force X6-88 back into his normal routine.
  • PCPC Playstation 4Playstation 4 Xbox OneXbox One X6-88 may get stuck underwater when attempting to attack nearby raiders before being able to speak to him the first time.[verified]
    • This can be fixed by simply entering the captain's quarters at Libertalia, progressing the quest and moving X6-88.
  • PCPC Playstation 4Playstation 4 Xbox OneXbox One After killing Gabriel, the quest description will remain the same as if he was deactivated by the recall code, mentioning the now dead synth being returned to the Institute and the success of the mission. [verified]
  • PCPC Playstation 4Playstation 4 Xbox OneXbox One If you manage to kill Gabriel his body cannot be selected and looted.[verified]
  • [Platforms needed]If you visit your quarters and the quest doesn't complete, then travel back to Libertalia where the rogue synth was. The quest will then end and the next quest will begin. See here.[verification needed]