Colony construction and management

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Marie-Ange Demory
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This section of our walkthrough for Fallout 4 is dedicated to the management and settlement building. We will see how to build houses, feed the inhabitants, give them water, electricity and protect them from attacks.

Settlement management is a fairly important step in Fallout 4, and at first sight seems a bit complex. In reality, its operation is relatively simple and intuitive when you dive into it a little. Settlements are special places on the map that you can modify and improve as you wish (picture1). During the adventure, inhabitants will come to populate these places, and you will have to arrange and manage them correctly to increase their happiness.

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Switch to construction mode: 
In all colonies, you find red workshops that you cannot move (picture2). By interacting with it, you go into construction mode (picture3).

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At the top of the screen, you can see several information about the colony you are in: the number of colonists, the amount of food, water, energy, defense, beds, the happiness rate and finally the size of the place (picture4). If one of these elements appears in red, it means that your colonists are missing this element. You must then solve this problem to maintain their happiness rate.

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Collect resources:
Before you can build anything, you need to own resources. When you are in construction mode, you can recycle most of the elements of the scenery simply by approaching to highlight them (picture5), then pressing the button indicated “Recycle” (picture6). You will then see the resources you get by recycling each item.

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Already go around the place and recycle everything you can: tires, furniture, lampposts, concrete blocks, panels, barrels,... in short, everything that is highlighted when you pass over it and which is not useful. You can also recycle entire ruined houses (picture7). Note that the bric-a-brac you collect during your explorations can also be used: consult the table in our Craft section.

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Now that you have enough resources, we can start looking at the different elements.

The different buildings:
Still in construction mode, you will see a bar at the bottom of the screen offering several construction categories (picture8). Let's break down each category. Keep in mind that some constructions require you to unlock specific skills in your character sheet: the prerequisites are indicated to the right of the selected items.

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- Structures :
In Structures, you find everything you need to make new wooden or metal buildings: floors, walls, roofs, stairs,... If you're not very inspired, you can always use prefabs (picture9). Select the item you want, then place it on the ground (picture10). If the element appears in green, it means that you can place it there, if it is red, you must change its orientation or completely change its location.

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- Furniture:
The furniture includes everything that is beds, benches, chairs, storage, shelves, tables, counters, bathtubs, toilets, televisions,... (picture11). All of these tend to improve settlers' lives and increase their happiness.

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- Decorations:
Decorations include carpets, paintings, panels, statues, dispensers, flowerpots,... (picture12). These elements are mainly used to beautify the place, to bring a little life to it.

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- Electricity :
Electricity is a very important section for the proper functioning of your colonies. Here you find generators, connectors, switches, lights, terminals, but above all recruitment radio beacons, allowing you to attract more settlers (picture13).

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To supply these elements with electricity, start by placing a generator (picture14). Then choose an item that requires electricity and place it nearby (picture15).

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Finally, press the button indicating “Fix the cable” on one of the 2 elements, then press again while looking at the other (picture16). The current then powers the object (picture17).

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- Defense :
The defense tab is also very important. You will find inside what to make turrets, traps and guard posts (picture18). Place them at the entrance to your colonies to prevent invaders from entering.

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- Resources:
Probably the most important tab of all. Here you will find something to get water for your settlers (picture19), plant seeds to feed them, but also various elements such as recovery stations to obtain more materials or sirens to alert your settlers of attacks.

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- Stores:
Thanks to this tab, and if you have the necessary skills, you can build stores in your colonies (picture20). These shops allow you to barter, but also bring you income proportional to the total population.

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- Manufacturing:
Finally, the manufacturing tab allows you to build workbenches for Le Craft (picture21). In Sanctuary, you already have everything you need, but this is not the case in all settlements.

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Make your settlers work:
Now that you have placed everything you want in your colony, you must now assign colonists to take full advantage of certain constructions. For example, if you have planted vegetables, you must ask a colonist to take care of it so that the number of supplies increases. To do this, switch to construction mode, target a settler and press the button marked “Order” (picture22). Now aim for the element you want it to take care of, then press “Assign” (picture23). A message appears to confirm that the action has been taken into account (picture24). Do the same, for example, on the guard posts so that a settler is assigned to the defense.

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