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A combination of martial arts, boxing and other hand-to-hand martial arts. Combat with your hands and feet.— In-game description

Unarmed is a skill in Fallout, Fallout 2, Fallout 3, Fallout: New Vegas, and Fallout Tactics.

Fallout

Example: A starting Agility of 5 and Strength of 5.

Affected weapons

Fallout 2 and Fallout Tactics

Example: A starting Agility of 5 and Strength of 5.

Unarmed skill attacks

The attacks are divided into two groups: primary and secondary. At any one time, there will be up to four attacks available: the strongest primary punch/kick the player character meets the requirements for (a plain punch/kick if none), and the strongest secondary punch/kick they qualify for, if any. The secondary attacks have a higher AP cost but cause more devastating effects.

Equipping an unarmed-type weapon (such as brass knuckles for example) will override these skill attacks. This means that with high enough Unarmed skill one will actually lose damage by equipping them.

For example, base melee attack ("Punch") deals 1-2 damage. With Unarmed of 55%, that becomes "Strong Punch" which adds 3 damage, for a total of 4-5. Meanwhile, brass knuckles have a damage range of only 2-5 - so one is better off without them.

To summarize, spiked knuckles become obsolete when the "Hammer Punch" is obtained and brass knuckles are useless altogether, unless for some reason the player character has less than 6 Agility and/or doesn't meet the requirement for Lucas's training.

In 1.02d (which is the most up-to-date official patch) the Jab secondary attack obtained at level 5 is strictly superior to Strong Punch, dealing the same damage at the same AP cost but having an extra 10% crit chance.

Finally, it is possible to enhance the damage dealt with unarmed attacks using several methods, for instance, by increasing Strength, or using the Bonus HtH Damage perk, the Heavy Handed trait, or, less obviously, the Living Anatomy perk (+5 damage against all organics, that is, against most opponents).

Name Requirements Damage AP Critical Chance
Primary punch attacks
Punch None Base damage 3 -
Strong Punch Unarmed 55%, Agility 6 +3 3 -
Hammer Punch Unarmed 75%, Agility 6, Strength 5, level 6 +5 3 +5%
Haymaker Unarmed 100%, Agility 7, Strength 5, level 9 +7 3 +15%
Secondary punch attacks
Jab Unarmed 75%, Agility 7, Strength 5, level 5 +5 (+3 in 1.02d) 6 (3 in 1.02d) +5% (+10% in 1.02d)
Palm Strike Unarmed 115%, Agility 7, Strength 5, level 12 +7, armor piercing 6 +15%
Piercing Strike Unarmed 130%, Agility 7, Strength 5, Level 16 +10, armor piercing 8 +40%
Primary kick attacks
Kick None Base damage 4 -
Strong Kick Unarmed 40%, Agility 6 +5 4 -
Snap Kick Unarmed 60%, Agility 6, Level 6 +7 4 -
Power Kick Unarmed 80%, Agility 6, Strength 6, Level 9 +9 4 +5%
Secondary kick attacks
Hip Kick Unarmed 60%, Agility 7, Strength 6, Level 6 +7 7 -
Hook Kick Unarmed 100%, Agility 7, Strength 6, Level 12 +9, armor piercing 7 +10%
Piercing Kick Unarmed 125%, Agility 8, Strength 6, Level 15 +12, armor piercing 9 +50%

Ways to increase Unarmed

Fallout 2
  • Cameron and Lucas at the Arroyo can train in Unarmed skill under certain conditions.
  • John L. Sullivan in Klamath can raise both the Unarmed and Melee Weapons skills by 10%.
  • A 5%(4% if tagged) increase can be obtained for using each punching bag on the first level of the Sierra Army Depot.
  • Becoming a Prizefighter grants a 5% unarmed bonus.
  • Both Lo Pan and the Dragon can raise the Unarmed skill. The increase is in four training sessions 5% each, but no more than 100%.

In total the Unarmed skill can be increased to 100% without ever putting any points into it: Lucas in Arroyo will increase Unarmed to 55% unless the player has below 6 Agility. After that the player can get 10% from Sullivan, two 5% punching bag bonuses (Sierra Army Depot) and 5% from Prizefighter for a total of 80%. Finally, the player can take four day training from either Dragon or Lo Pan to reach 100%.

On the other hand, if the player did tag Unarmed, they will be able to increase it by a total of 23%: Sullivan +10%, Punching Bags in Sierra Army depot +8%, Prizefighter +5%.

After that, one can push it even further by increasing their stats: +5 for Strength (Brotherhood of Steel surgery +1 and advanced power armor +4) and +1 Agility (Gain perk).

Affected weapons

Fallout 2
Fallout Tactics

Fallout 3

"When words fail, there's always fists."

Example: A starting Endurance of 5 and Luck of 5.

In Fallout 3, the Unarmed skill is tied to the Endurance SPECIAL stat. The player character will receive a boost of +2 points in Unarmed per level of Endurance, for a maximum boost of +20 points at 10 Endurance. Luck further raises Unarmed effectiveness by +1 point per every 2 levels (+5 Unarmed at 9-10 Luck). Unarmed damage is derived from the Unarmed skill and unaffected by Strength.

The AP cost (Action Points, used in V.A.T.S.) when completely unarmed is 22.

In Fallout 3, it is not possible to target individual body parts in V.A.T.S. while using unarmed or melee weapons. Targeting with the crosshair outside of V.A.T.S enables one to select body locations in an attempt to cripple and/or disarm. It is possible to knock-out an opponent even with non-critical head strikes; this should not be confused with the effects of the Paralyzing Palm perk, as it can be done without the perk, it can be done outside of V.A.T.S. and with any unarmed weapon, though the chances are greatly improved with bare hand attacks.

Ways to increase Unarmed

Permanent
Temporary
Note: Only items adding +5 or more are included.

Affected weapons

Perks that require Unarmed skill

Perk Requirement Level Additional Requirements
Paralyzing Palm Unarmed 70 18 -

Bugs

Attacking in V.A.T.S. can cause the Lone Wanderer to "teleport" several yards to attack their enemy.

Fallout: New Vegas

Example: A starting Endurance of 5 and Luck of 5.

As in Fallout 3, the Unarmed skill is tied to the Endurance SPECIAL stat. The player character will receive a boost of +2 points in Unarmed per level of Endurance, for a maximum boost of +20 points at 10 Endurance. Luck further raises Unarmed effectiveness by +1 points per every 2 levels (+5 Unarmed at 9 Luck). Just as in Fallout 3, unarmed damage is derived from the Unarmed skill and unaffected by Strength; the only change is that unarmed weapons now have a Strength requirement in order to use them at maximum efficiency. However, aside from the ballistic fist, the Strength requirements are generally very low.

The AP cost (Action Points, used in V.A.T.S.) when completely unarmed is 22.

Fallout: New Vegas possesses a multitude of new, more powerful unarmed and melee-specific perks, game mechanic bonuses (i.e. special attacks in V.A.T.S. at higher levels of skills; specifically, an Uppercut at 50 and a cross attack at 75).

There are four different special moves that can be learned from different non-player characters in the game. One can learn the Ranger Takedown attack from Ranger Andy in Novac, the Legion Assault from Lucius at Fortification Hill, the Scribe Counter from Veronica and the Khan Trick from Diane. Each requires completing a task to be taught the move, and may require the player character having certain ratings (such as high or moderate fame) in factions to be learned.

V.A.T.S. Special Attacks

As your Unarmed skill increases, you will unlock the ability to do uppercuts (50 Unarmed) and crosses (75 Unarmed) - both inside V.A.T.S. and out.Fallout: New Vegas loading screens

Unarmed weapons in Fallout: New Vegas can utilize up to three special attacks in V.A.T.S., each at the cost of 20 Action Points, depending on the character's Unarmed skill. At an unarmed skill of at least 50 Stomp and Uppercut special attacks become available. Stomp is an attack that deals double damage, where the target receives a swift downward kick, but can only be used on enemies after they have been knocked down. Uppercut is an upward punch that deals an additional 15% damage. At an unarmed skill of at least 75, Cross is a punch thrown across the body that deals 10% greater damage, with an additional 250% damage to limbs.

Unlike other special unarmed moves that must be learned before use, these special attacks require only an investment in skill points to unlock. Since the special attacks require the same AP regardless of the weapon used, higher damage but slower weapons benefit more from V.A.T.S. than faster weapons. Note that using an unarmed attack while crouching changes the attack to uppercut while still retaining the AP cost of a normal attack.

Name Requirement AP Damage Bonus Notes
Uppercut Unarmed 50 20 15%
Cross Unarmed 75 20 10% 2.5x Increased Limb Damage
Stomp None 20 100% Only on knocked down opponents

In addition, all unarmed attacks in V.A.T.S. do twice as much base damage (just like power attacks in real-time).

Ways to increase Unarmed

Permanent
Temporary
Note: Only items adding +3 or more are included.

Affected weapons

Perks that require Unarmed skill

Perk Requirement Level Additional Requirements
Piercing Strike 70 12
Paralyzing Palm 70 18
Slayer 90 24 Agility 7

Notable Unarmed skilled non-player characters

Fallout

  • Garl Death-Hand, leader of the Khans.
  • Kane, bodyguard and right-hand of Decker.
  • MacRae, guardian of the entry and unarmed combat trainer of the Blades.

Fallout 2

  • Dragon, champion in hand-to-hand of San Francisco.
  • Francis, champion of arm wrestling of Broken Hills.
  • Frank Horrigan, secret service agent of Enclave and president bodyguard.
  • Lo Pan, master in hand-to-hand of San Franscico.
  • Masticator, heavyweight champion of Northern California.

Fallout 3

  • Argyle, former ghoul manservant of Herbert Dashwood.

Fallout: New Vegas

Talented Unarmed combatants in the Mojave Wasteland can teach specialized fighting styles to improve your abilities.Fallout: New Vegas loading screen
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