Everyone in Fallout tells you that Deathclaws are bad news. Everyone tells you it would be suicide to take them on alone. But this is a game, I’m the hero and I win against impossible odds all the time.
Well, it seems they really mean what they say this time. Deathclaws are extremely dangerous. They are fast, can take an absurd amount of damage, have a very high damage threshold and they kill you in a few swings.
So a typical encounter starts like this
and ends like this
In Fallout 3 you could just shoot them with the dartgun and they hobbled along while you walked backwards emptying your gun into their face.
What are effective tactics for killing Deathclaws in Fallout New Vegas? I’m not really looking for exploiting glitches like bad pathfinding, but legitimate tactics to have a good chance against those beasts.
Extreme range, sneak attack criticals, and armor-piercing bullets are your friends versus Deathclaws. If you’re in possession of (and a decent shot with) a scoped hunting rifle or better sniper-type rifle, you can usually pick them off one at a time since they tend not to group up. If you’re finding it impossible to get enough damage before they close the distance, you can always augment your plan by throwing down some mines on the path between you and the Deathclaw (make sure you back up some). Finally, it’s handy to be able to quick switch to an automatic rifle to finish the job if the mines fail you.
Pulling Deathclaws one at a time like this is a slow and tedious process, but it works.
At the very least, you can always move on and come back later!