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Its been my experince through-out FNV, that of all the companions, the only 2 that are consistently reliable. are Veronica and ED-E, either singly or in combination. Now I'll freely admit, I havent had a lot of experience with the other companions, but thats largely because all the times I have tried to use them, I have found them...lacking.
With the gun-wielding companions, ie, Boone, Cass etc, they dont seem very well....good at it. Low level stuff, sure, NP, if they are even a little challenging, they mostly fire away, ineffectively it seems to me, or they fiddle with reloading, or pick up weapons off stuff I killed, fire a few shots, say they are out, and go back to screwing around again.
It doesnt seem to matter what I give them, give Boone an AMR, he still sucks. Cass, tried to give her a Hunting shotgun, not much better. Strangely however, I took Arcade out for a walk to the vertibird site and we encountered a glower. Arcade, on a ridge far behind me, whips out his energy pistol, and at a range I would have used my sniper rifle, did suprisenly well. I just stood back and watched. He did fine, better than Cass and Boone to be sure.
Now the Meelee classes, are a lot more effective, Veronica stomps pretty much everything we encounter. Lily when shes using her blade is quite decent too. When she uses her carbine, not so much. ED-E is effective not so much for his power, but that he fires form long range, and keeps his distance very well. The followers upgrade helps of course, but its more how he fights, than what he fights with. Giveing companions weapons seems to be a hopless case for the most part. They spray and pray, break weapons, chew through ammo like theres no tommor and rarely seem to hit much anyhow. Its why I like Veronica so much. Shes about as hands-off as one could ask for. Ive run through all FNV a few times with just her and never missed the others. I just wish he other companions were as capable.
Now it could be, I really dont how to handle or equip the other classes very well. It would be nice if there was a good resource on companion handling, but I havent found one really. Information ON them -yes, handling them, not as much. Could the problem be I need to level them up? Am I not spending enough time with them? I havent even used rex, even though I have done his task. Veronica in her power armor and super-heated fist, ED-E blasting away at range, and a lot of times, I barely have time to close in or level a gun before things are 75% dead or better. Often im reduced to standing and watching her clean up the place shes so efficent. With the other characters, not even close. Traveller