Paulson is a rancher from the "Wild West" period of American history. He was abducted by aliens during one of their previous visits to Earth and has been kept in suspended animation for hundreds of years. He's quiet, soft-spoken, and appears generally unfazed by his current situation. He offers little background information about himself, but it's clear that he has a deep hatred of the aliens for removing him from his family and his life. As he puts it, all he now wants is to "seek a lamentable but satisfying revenge on every last one of those bastards." As such, after being thawed from stasis, he can be observed coldly killing a surrendering alien worker.
Among the Stars: The player character has the option of bringing Paulson with them as a companion to the hangar to help out.
This Galaxy Ain't Big Enough...: If Paulson survived his section in Among the Stars, he will help in the last battle by keeping aliens off of the player character while they fight the other mothership.
Effects of player's actions
Following the events of Mothership Zeta, Paulson leaves the ship to wander the wastes. He will not become an active non-player character in the Capital Wasteland and does not appear again without the use of console commands.
The player character can ask him to accompany them in destroying the generator in the hangar area of the spaceship and to any of the optional areas connected to the engineering core.
The player character can pass a speech check or use the Black Widow perk to find out why he hates the aliens so much.
If the player character has found Alien captive recorded log 5, a speech check becomes available to convince him to talk about his family.
Paulson's outfit can be reverse pick-pocketed, but his revolver can only be obtained if he is killed, mainly due to the fact that he uses a different version of it than the one obtained off his dead body; this way, it is impossible to get his version of the gun, other than by utilizing console commands.
Killing Paulson will not result in any gain or loss of Karma and attacking him will not provoke other non-player characters, instead, they will come to the Lone Wanderer's aid or they will not react.
If the Lone Wanderer enters the cargo hold without Paulson and returns to the engineering area, a captured alien worker can be seen surrounded by the survivors. They discuss what to do with it and how can they communicate with it. Paulson is indifferent as he promptly kills it, simply remarking "it's no longer an issue now."
In front of an advertisement for Giddyup Buttercup Paulson may comment on finding the phrase "giddyup buttercup!" to be "catchy."
If Paulson sees the room with the life-size Giddyup Buttercup with the dead wastelanders lying around it, he remarks that his horse had never done something like that.
Sally tells Paulson that he can be "Jangles the Moon Monkey" on the bridge, which is a character seen on the "The Adventures of Captain Cosmos" pre-War adverts.
Like Somah, Paulson does not crouch/sneak while he is a companion.
Paulson is one of the oldest living characters in the Fallout universe, following Toshiro Kago.
If the Lone Wanderer takes Paulson to the Cargo Hold area and passes a Nuka-Cola vending machine, he may remark, "Nuka... what?"