This weapon is often the very first rifle type firearm the Lone Wanderer can acquire after leaving Vault 101 for the first time. (Although the BB gun is the first rifle to be acquired, the .32 hunting rifle is among the first shoulder firearms that are able to be acquired.) This weapon is very accurate, and has the best zoom of the non-scoped weapons. The standard hunting rifle has spread, unlike the sniper rifle (and the hunting rifle's unique variant Ol' Painless). This can make the weapon hard to use for sniping at long ranges without V.A.T.S. A skilled player can use this weapon to great effect in most situations, even close quarters combat inside buildings. As always, it is best to take cover between shots.
Unlike most guns in the game, this rifle is not self-loading (automatic); rather, it is a bolt-action weapon. This gun is best used at a safe range, or on relatively weak non-player characters.
It is coming apart and held together with duct tape and wire, while other weapons in the game are either rusted or scratched.
It is interesting to note that while this is a very accurately depicted weapon, the in-game weapon model does not have rear or front sights, nor does it have a scope. In reality, this would make the weapon extremely difficult to aim at longer ranges and would render it almost totally worthless beyond close-range encounters, even to a skilled marksman.
Ol' Painless - While only slightly stronger than the regular hunting rifle, Ol' Painless has a hastened reload time, (both for replacing the magazine and cycling the bolt), and no spread. It's also less durable.
Lincoln's repeater - While strictly a lever-action rifle that uses .44 magnum rounds, Lincoln's repeater is only repairable with hunting rifles. It's very powerful and very accurate.
Lucas Simms' house has a damaged rifle sitting on a shelf in a room upstairs. The door requires a Lockpick skill of 50, you can pickpocket the house key from Lucas Simms, or you can use an empty, upturned metal barrel (carried to and placed near the Water processing plant railing) to jump onto Lucas Simms' roof and enter his house via the roof hatch (which is never locked) to his lookout point. Note that taking it counts as stealing.
Just west of Vault 101 is an old barn with a random encounter spawn point located inside. Going up the stairs in the barn will reveal a hunting rifle and .32 ammunition next to a skeleton and a Ham Radio.
There is a damaged rifle behind Springvale School among a pile of nuclear waste barrels (in a fenced-in area with a locked gate).
In one of the abandoned houses in Grayditch there is a hunting rifle leaning against a shelf.
One can be found in Citadel B ring (in the room "Barracks") or bought in the armory.
pcps3xbox360 A gun model glitch may sometimes occur when killing an enemy as they are reloading, causing the bolt of the gun to float above the rifle. [verified]
pcps3xbox360 Sometimes the gun might glitch, when in 3rd Person mode, the gun will appear on the ground, where you last stepped. You will be holding nothing until you reboot your console. [verified]
ps3 Sometimes the gun will stay on your back when taken out it will look like you are holding nothing but you still can shoot and see the weapon flash this may occur on enemies as well especially on wild men in the steelyard with the add on The Pitt. [verified]