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In some conversations, you gain the ability to initiate combat while terrifying a mob of opponents, sending them fleeing away for safety.— in-game description

Terrifying Presence is a perk in Fallout: New Vegas.


In some conversations, the user gains the ability to initiate combat while terrifying a mob of opponents, sending them fleeing away for safety or attacking in fear of their lives.

Instances of use

  • Ranger Milo can be scared after completion of the quest Back in Your Own Backyard.
  • Grecks can be frightened after taking his money for the Debt Collector quest.
  • Jean-Baptiste Cutting can be convinced to let Cass live briefly after bringing her back to the Silver Rush to meet him. Although to continue the Birds of a Feather quest further, one must talk to Cutting again afterwards, and agree to let him kill Cass instead.
  • The Brotherhood of Steel troops that track Veronica down at the Follower's Outpost can be frightened into temporary submission after the character says, "I will cast down your Codex and bask in the dying agony of those who hold it dear."
  • Benny can become scared before the Courier murders him.
  • Vulpes Inculta can be told that the Courier is going to wear his head like he wears the dog's when first met in Nipton. This will turn him and his entourage hostile. Costs less Legion reputation if they are killed this way (remains at neutral if no reputation has been gained or lost beforehand), but good Karma will not be earned for killing Vulpes Inculta.
  • The Legion Explorer that approaches the Courier outside of Nelson can be scared. The Explorer will threaten the Courier with death, and they can return the threat and mock the Explorer as "skirt boy". This option will not be available if a vilified status is achieved with the Legion.
  • Caesar can be told that the Courier wants to paint his tent with his guts.
  • Lieutenant Haggerty and crew can be told that the Courier is Death. If told about wanting to explore, the Courier can tell her they will carve themself a key out of her bones.
  • Pvt. Davey Crenshaw can be frightened by telling him the Courier will pollute the NCR's air filtration system with his stinking corpse during the quest I Put a Spell on You for the Legion.
  • Greasy Johnny can be frightened during the second part of the quest Someone to Watch Over Me.
  • Chavez during the I Fought the Law quest. Note: turns hostile immediately.
  • During the quest How Little We Know when the Courier should speak to Cachino. To obtain the information on his whereabouts, either pass a Speech check of 28 with the receptionist, or for a much more entertaining option: terrify an Omerta thug into giving the information.
  • James Garret can be threatened into releasing Hadrian from his contract in the Atomic Wrangler Casino so he can go work for Tommy Torini, for the quest Talent Pool.
  • Tomas or Jacklyn can be terrified into giving up their Sunset Sarsaparilla star bottle caps, depending on who wins their gun fight.
  • During the quest Oh My Papa, the legionaries Karl sends after the Courier can be threatened and will run away.
  • When being pursued by Legion assailants a second time, they will greet by asking the Courier if they "ever give up" to which the following can be answered: "Not while there are still spines left unshattered!" which will send the group of assassins running in terror.
  • Dead Money Christine can be frightened into taking the elevator in the switching station down to the cramped electrical control room in the quest Mixed Signals.

Behind the scenes

Joshua Sawyer came up with the perk but regrets not giving Terrifying Presence any general combat use, as well as not addressing its inconsistent implementation into conversations. As it stands, the perk is very special-case.[1]


  1. Anonymous: "Who came up with the Terrifying Presence perk? It owns."
    Joshua Sawyer: "Thanks. I did, but I wish it had more uses or a more general use in combat. As-is, it's very special-case."
    Joshua Sawyer Formspring Archive on RPG Codex