Carl's Fallout 4 Guide
for PC, Xbox One, and PS4

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Fallout 4 Perception Perks

Stat Benefits and Making Use of PER Perks

Perception affects your chance to hit in VATS Perception grants a percentage increase toward your chance to hit in V.A.T.S. - users who prefer AP and VATS usage over normal gunplay are wise to invest a bit into this stat.

Perception is an important Perk for players who want to use V.A.T.S. heavily in Fallout 4. This guide to Perception will outline its benefits from a stat perspective, while also analyzing all the Perks and how useful they are. I've also provided the Perk IDs for players who like to Cheat, but the main focus of this is to help you pick perks by providing info on how they work.

Fallout 4 PerceptionJump to a Perception Perk! - Just need the Perk ID to cheat, or want to know more about one of the Perception Perks? Click to jump to info about that perk:

Perception Effects

Chance to hit is increased based on range and accuracy in Fallout 4, plus perception's boost The chance to hit is based on the range, accuracy of the weapon, and your Perception.

High Perception & Chance to Hit in V.A.T.S.
The main purpose of high Perception is to increase accuracy in V.A.T.S. - the higher your Perception, the greater the accuracy of your weapons when targeting in VATS mode. What it seems to do is increase the accuracy of a weapon beyond its stated range. For each point of perception, I got about a 4% increase in chance to hit based on what it would be without the added Perception. For a simple example, if your chance to hit was a base value of 40 with 1 Perception, you'd have a 56% chance to hit with 10 Perception - a 40% increase. Were it 70, you'd now see a 95% chance to hit, as you'd reach the cap. The range of the weapon, along with its accuracy, matters a lot in how much Perception will affect chance to hit. The higher it already is, the better Perception will help you. Therefore, you'll still need range-appropriate weapons, as Perception alone will not make a 10% chance to hit into a 50%.

Stealing and Sneaking
Other sites report that Perception helps Pickpocketing, but I cannot confirm this at all. I see the same chance to steal with 1 Perception as I do with 10, so if it has an effect on stealing I am missing something. Agility seems to do that - I can see the increase along with higher Agility, despite Pickpocket being a Perception Perk. Perception DOES seem to increase the size of sweet spots while lockpicking, as I've had very little trouble with supposedly difficult locks with my high Perception character. This is quite important if you want to easily get into master safes. It may reduce the chance that lockpicks break, since this stat is all about the senses. Either way, it makes Lockpicking easier.

Perception Bobblehead Location

Find the Perception Bobblehead at the Museum of Freedom The Perception Bobblehead can be found inside the Museum of Freedom. Find this location early in the first quests.

Where to Find the Perception Bobblehead: Inside the Museum of Freedom, found very early in a game. You can find it in the room where you initially meet Preston Garvey. It is sitting on a desk.

Perception Perks

This is the list of all Perception Perks in Fallout 4. Every perk starts with a minimum SPECIAL rank, which does not go up with future points in the perk - only the level requirement changes. You will find the Perk ID for the player.addperk cheat, as well. This is useful in order to avoid leveling your character to get perk points, or to remove perks and respec your build with the player.removeperk cheat. In case I've made a typo in any of these, you can find any Perk ID in the cheat menu by typing help perkname 0 - for perks with multiple words, try only one word in the perk name. Expect to see them listed without ranks. You can omit the 00s when using these cheats - start with the first non-zero character to save yourself some typing.

The Pickpocket Perk in Fallout 4 Pickpocket can let you place a grenade in a target's inventory. Be sure to get away before the explosion!

Pickpocket Perk
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 1Your quick hands and sticky fingers make picking pockets 25% easier.4d88a
2Level 6Picking pockets is now 50% easier. You can place a live grenade in a person's inventory.e3702
3Level 17Picking pockets is now 75% easier, and you can steal equipped weapons.e3703
4Level 31Picking pockets is now twice as easy, and you can steal equipped items.1d248f

About Pickpocket: Each rank of this will increase your chance to steal items by 25%, 50, 75% and double what you'd normally see. If it was 40%, with Rank 4, you'd now have an 80% chance to steal an item. The more valuable items are always harder to steal, so this does help a lot. Agility is what actually affects the chance to steal when pickpocketing, so high base agility will make this much more useful. Weapons and armor are not normally even shown when pickpocketing - sometimes this could be helpful for making money, or even taking an enemy's weapon while using a stealth boy and light armor, only to leave them weaponless when the fighting starts.

Just move the grenade from your inventory to theirs, and it's Live. For sneaky characters, being able to place a grenade into an enemy's pocket is very useful - assuming you can sneak up close enough to pickpocket. I was able to successfully plant a grenade and kill someone in a back alley without anyone noticing using this perk, but doing it in the market caused people to look around, revealing me and causing the entire city to aggro. One of the drawbacks is, you've got to move away just after planting the grenade, which can cause you to be detected. I don't recommend it without the Perk to improve sneaking as well.

Rifleman Perk (Click for Guide)
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 2Keep your distance long and your kill-count high. Attacks with non-automatic rifles do 20% more damage 4a0b6
2Level 9Attacks with non-automatic rifles do 40% more damage and ignore 15% of a target's armor. 4a0b7
3Level 18Attacks with non-automatic rifles do 60% more damage and ignore 20% of a target's armor. 4a0b8
4Level 31Attacks with non-automatic rifles do 80% more damage and ignore 25% of a target's armor. They also have a slight chance of crippling a limb. 6fa20
5Level 46Attacks with non-automatic rifles do double damage and ignore 30% of a target's armor. They also have a slightly higher chance of crippling a limb. 65e52

About Rifleman: I definitely recommend people who want to snipe take this perk, since enemies' armor is going to absorb quite a lot of damage from a sniper rifle. The higher their armor, the more extra damage you'll do with the Rifleman Perk. In that way, it increases damage more so than the other weapon damage Perks.

It is worth noting that anything that isn't automatic, a heavy weapon, or a pistol pretty much counts as a rifle. Laser rifles, shotguns, and the laser musket all count as rifles for the purposes of this Perk, along with anything that has rifle in the name (of course). Take this along with Sniper and Concentrated Fire for some massive damage headshots.

The crippled limb component means that sometimes, you'll just straight cripple a limb without depleting its health as you would normally. This can be super helpful for taking out an enemy's weapon hand. Thankfully, this Perk is going to help both VATS and non-VATS users equally.

Awareness Perk shows the target's resistances in Fallout 4 The Awareness Perk shows a target's Damage, Energy, Radiation, and Bleed Resistances. Go for the weakest point, unless they're close - in which case, use the weapon that can put out the most damage per second.

Awareness Perk
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 3To defeat your enemies, know their weaknesses! You can view a target's specific damage resistances in V.A.T.S.d2287

About Awareness: Displays an opponent's four types of resistances - Damage, Energy, Radiation, and Bleed. Crossed out symbols mean immunity to that type of damage. Ghouls have rad resistance of 1,000 but they are healed by radiation, so it's not perfect. The Awareness Perk grows in usefulness the further you go in the game, because enemy resistances are going to get higher and higher based on your level. It's unlikely you know by heart what every creature is resistant to, and it's likely you carry different classes of weapons so that you can take advantage of any enemy's lowest type of resistance. Even if you're a rifleman, you may have a sniper rifle, shotgun, and laser rifle so you can take advantage of an enemy with lower energy weapons resistance that has high damage resistance. Take it to help save some ammo, and perhaps save your life. Humanoid opponents can have such a wide variety of armor and resistances that this is particularly helpful, but it's also great against the wasteland's monstrosities.

Locksmith Perk
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 4Your nimble fingers allow you to pick advanced locks.523ff
2Level 7You can pick Expert locks.52400
3Level 18You can now pick Master locks.52401
4Level 41Your bobby pins never break during lockpicking1d246a

About Locksmith: Consider this a necessity if you want to be able to loot everything in Fallout 4. I regretted having to keep track of where the Master safes were located, so I could go find out what was inside them later. Sometimes, while leveling up, I saved a perk point or two so that I could possibly unlock the next level of Locksmith or Hacker to be able to get at terminals, doors and safes. Master-level safes usually hide the largest caches of ammo, caps, and other loot, so the further you go, the better - at least up until Rank 3.

Rank 4 is a massive disappointment. You probably won't have so few bobby pins by level 41 that it even comes into play. It's more likely you'll have 99+ and won't ever need this, especially if you couple it with at least moderate Perception to make lockpicking easier. There is also Tumblers Today magazines, which make Lockpicking just a little easier for each one you collect. Take this only in the level 200s range when you have nothing else to spend a point on. The same is true for level 4 of Hacker, which just prevents a measly 10 second lockout should you fail to guess the password.

Demolition Expert lets you view the arc where a grenade will first bounce. It is useful to all builds. Be sure to account for the extra, smaller hops, so that you can have it go off near your target. With Rank 3, this becomes less of an issue as the grenade's blast radius is increased by a bit.

Demolition Expert Perk
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 5The bigger the boom, the better! Your explosives do 25% more damage, and you can craft explosives at any Chemistry Station.4c923
2Level 10Your explosives do 50% more damage, and grenades gain a throwing arc.4c924
3Level 22Your explosives do 75% more damage and affect a larger area.4c925
4Level 34Your explosives now do double damage. Mines and grenades shot in V.A.T.S explode for double damage, too.65e13

About Demolition Expert: I found grenades nearly useless without rank 2 of this Perk, so that you can see where the first bounce is going to occur. You must take into account that the grenade won't explode where it lands, but it's an amazing Perk that helps immensely in sneak attacks on groups of enemies, or to flush out an enemy in hiding. The fact that this also increases the radius along with damage just makes it all the more likely your grenades and mines are going to hit their targets.

What the last rank means is that when you aim at a grenade in midair or a mine on the ground, they will additionally deal double damage. Sometimes it's possible to catch a raider tossing a grenade at you while in VATS, and you can then target it and make it go off right nearby - this doing double damage could cause him to harm his friends. Good stuff, and makes for a fun playstyle.

The 'craft explosives' portion of this is kind of unnecessary, it should probably state that on each level because subsequent levels unlock new recipes. For example, at level 2 you can make the Baseball Grenade, and at level 2, Fragmentation Grenades. Demolition Expert Level 3 and 4 stuff takes Science Perk levels as well - you can craft Pulse, Plasma, and Cryogenic Grenades.

It is worth noting that this affects the Missile Launcher and Fat Man's blast radius and damage, along with grenades and mines. They certainly qualify as destructive weapons, so this makes sense.

Night Person Perk
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 6You are a creature of the night! Gain +2 to Intelligence and Perception between the hours of 6:00 pm. and 6:00 am.4c93b
2Level 25You now have +3 to Intelligence and Perception between the hours of 6:00 pm. and 6:00 am., and night vision when sneaking.1d2495

About Night Person: After reviewing this Perk, I simply cannot recommend it. While Solar Powered is pretty awesome, this night-time bonus is not good at all. You'll get at most a 12% increase to hit (over what you'd see without it - 80% becomes 90% with 2 points in it. Night/day have no effect on your ability to hit targets, as the night vision will not improve accuracy in V.A.T.S. - Now, it may work very well for you if you're playing without using VATS much. The night vision will help when you're being sneaky, but enemies always show up on the radar to indicate where they are as soon as they've spotted you. This is going to come in handy more whenever you're seeking targets from afar, before you've been spotted. Rank 2 of this Perk gives you a little incentive to turn quests in during nighttime, since you'd get 9% bonus XP.

Refractor Perk
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 7You must be part mirror! Instantly gain +10 Energy Resistance.ca99d
2Level 11You now have +20 Energy Resistance.ca99e
3Level 21You now have +30 Energy Resistance. ca99f
4Level 35You now have +40 Energy Resistance. 65e4b
5Level 42You now have +50 Energy Resistance. 65e4c

About Refractor: If you're a Power Armor user, you're not going to notice this Perk much. For a sneaky build, Refractor is much more helpful. Each rank only gives you +10, not 10, then 20 etc. This is a Perk to get later in the game when more enemies are using energy weapons, most low-level enemies come at you with pipe pistols and those are completely unaffected. Once you're 25+, enemies will really begin using laser rifles much more often. A faction you encounter a lot in the main quest is known for heavy use of laser weapons, so it could come in handy for those encounters as well.

Sniper Perk (Click for Guide
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 8It's all about focus. You have improved control and can hold your breath longer when aiming with scopes.4c92a
2Level 13Non-automatic, scoped rifles have a chance of knocking down your target.4c92b
3Level 26Non-automatic, scoped rifles gain +25% accuracy to head shot in V.A.T.S.4c92c

About Sniper: The first two ranks are excellent for players who play Fallout 4 more like a shooter. The first rank will reduce the AP drain of breath-holding while Sniping manually with a scope. The second rank will make targets occasionally get knocked down, whether in V.A.T.S. or not.

Rank 3 of the Sniper Perk is amazing. It ADDS the 25% to whatever you had before. 50 becomes 75, 4 becomes 29 - got it? Great. It's one of the best Perks here for people who like to snipe from afar, and is super-useful in a sneaky sniper build. It synergizes incredibly well with high Perception (surpassing 10 through gear and drugs). It does exactly as it says - but even a short scope, which reduces AP cost in VATS when compared to a long scope, will trigger this effect. Use this to your benefit and shorten the scope to take more shots, or use the long scope to take your shots from a longer distance.

Penetrator Perk (Click for Guide)
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 9There's no place to hide! In V.A.T.S. you can target an enemy's body parts that are blocked by cover, with a decrease in accuracy.24aff
2Level 28In V.A.T.S. when you target an enemy's body parts that are blocked by cover, there is no decrease in accuracy.1d2477

About Penetrator: Click the guide linked above to learn more about Penetrator. In short, this Perk will let you 1. hit enemy body parts that are behind other body parts, or even other enemies. This is very helpful for sniping fusion cores from the front when dealing with enemies in Power Armor. Also, hard-to-hit body parts on enemies, such as a Deathclaw belly or a Mirelurk's head, become much easier to target. 2. It will let you get through one layer of cover, although some objects in-game just cannot be penetrated (like large steel drums). You can easily penetrate one layer of fence or metal sheeting typical used for cover, so enemies basically don't have cover so long as you're lined up right. Crits, with this perk, can go straight through cover of ANY KIND. It's an exceptional perk that any heavy V.A.T.S. user should take for their build.

Benefits of Fallout 4's Concentrated Fire Perk. Fallout 4's Concentrated Fire Perk lets you get insane hit rates. The torso was in the single digits, but by the 5th hit it will be 95%. This can let you get headshots at extreme distances with a really fast weapon in which it's OK to waste a few rounds. I highly recommend it with Gun Fu for a Pistol user, and to possibly use a shorter scope and stock on rifles to get an extra shot out of them in V.A.T.S.

Concentrated Fire Perk
RankRequiresPerk DescriptionPerk ID
1PER 10Stay Focused! In V.A.T.S. every attack on the same body part gains +10% accuracy.4d890
2Level 26In V.A.T.S. every attack on the same body part gains +15% accuracy. 1d2459
3Level 50In V.A.T.S. every attack on the same body part gains +20% accuracy and does 20% more damage.1d245a

About Concentrated Fire: This Perk is sick, and I almost expect them to change it in some way down the road. If you use fast weapons, you'll benefit most. The +percentage is additive, meaning if you had a 4% chance to hit, with rank 3 the second shot would be 24%, 44%, 64%, and so on, up to the cap of 95%. It shows you this as you queue up the shots in V.A.T.S. - pay attention to the enemy's health to get maximum benefit. Try not to go but one or two shots over what it'd take to kill them, assuming a shot might miss. You can then switch to a second target, assuming your weapon is fast enough. The most hits that can be queued up in V.A.T.S. is 16. With this perk, you can nail far-away targets with handguns so long as you can get the 1% chance to hit needed in order to try. By the 5th attack, you'd be guaranteed to hit.

As for the secondary effect of Rank 3 in Concentrated Fire increasing damage, this one does not continually stack up, or else by the 16th shot a Deathclaw I tested it on would've been taking 4x damage from my attacks. It takes 20% extra damage though, that's for sure. This is really nice for hitting them in the belly, which is their weakest point.

Build Ideas

Perception and Agility synergize very well to make heavy use of VATS, along with Luck given you can score more Critical Hits. These 3 alone can make a powerhouse character, with a dash of Endurance to make them more sturdy. You need a bit of everything in Fallout 4, but if you want to go with a sniper build then Rifleman, Action Boy (faster AP regen), Sneak, Concentrated Fire, and Sniper will all see you through. You may want a dash of better criticals as well (from Luck). Eventually I will make detailed build guides, but note the synergy in all these skills. Perception could also go well for a character that is running high Agility and using pistols, because Concentrated Fire and high Perception will go well with Gun Fu. Perception is almost useless to a Melee build, aside from being able to Lockpick, and thankfully that does not take much Perception.

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