Fallout 4: What is the Best Faction?

A brief overview of what each faction is all about.

Guide by Bill Lavoy, .

In Fallout 4, players are given the opportunity to join four different factions: The Minutemen, The Brotherhood of Steel, The Railroad, and The Institute. In this guide, we'll walk you through the benefits of every faction, as well as outlining the single best faction in Fallout 4.

If you need help with other areas of Fallout 4, then head over to our Fallout 4 guides walkthrough hub, featuring individual faction walkthrough guides, as well as more general quest and mission walkthroughs.

As players discover factions throughout their time in the wasteland, they must decide which faction to pledge allegiance to based off of the factions’ goals and intentions. While there aren’t very many factions to choose from, players may find themselves siding with a particular group over another. Selecting a preferred faction initiates a final series of events leading to the end of the game. We won’t spoil the various endings, but we will give you an idea of what each faction believes so that you can decide which ideology you want to stand behind in the end.

The Minutemen

The Minutemen faction of the Commonwealth is led by Preston Garvey, whom you meet very early in the game during the quest When Freedom Calls. For the most part, the Minutemen seem fairly neutral in comparison to the other factions. They don’t really have a hidden agenda; they just want the opportunity to thrive peacefully in Boston and rebuild their communities. After the tragic events of the Quincy Massacre, the Minutemen have dwindled in number and are willing to accept whoever is willing to aid them in their cause.

The Minutemen quests are mostly based around settlement formation. Preston will inform the player of new possible settlement locations that he feels are worth checking out. Since the Minutemen are mostly neutral, their quests don’t seem to bother the other factions. Even if you don’t blatantly choose to side with the Minutemen, you may end up indirectly doing so in the end anyway.

The Brotherhood of Steel

Under the guidance of Elder Maxson, members of the Brotherhood of Steel are devoted to eliminating Synths and Mutants.

These devoted soldiers aim to protect citizens of the Commonwealth against Synths, Mutants, and Ghouls by essentially wiping these groups out. The Brotherhood of Steel intends to protect the city from the corrupting nature of technology, by obtaining as much pre-war tech as they can find. The faction is led by Elder Maxson, but your primary point of contact is often Paladin Danse, a Power Armor-clad soldier and dedicated enemy of Synth and Mutants alike.

The Brotherhood has no trouble supplying its constituency with enough firepower and armor to start an epic conflict. If you tend to think that eliminating and killing entire populations of Synth and other Mutants is justified, then the Brotherhood of Steel may be suitable for you. For information on how to meet Paladin Danse for the first time, head over to our guide titled Fallout 4: How to Join the Brotherhood of Steel Faction.

The Railroad

If you feel that Synths deserve an equal chance at freedom, then consider supporting the Railroad.

The Railroad faction is a clandestine group that believes the Synth androids deserve a chance at autonomy and freedom. Their work is done on behalf of enslaved individuals who exhibit sentient behavior, but who are discriminated against for not being entirely human. This places the Railroad faction in direct opposition to the Institute. Like any secret organization, the Railroad maintains a hidden headquarters that is only accessible to those who go out of their way to find their base of operations.

To find their hideout, players must follow a trail that weaves throughout key areas of Boston Common, gathering clues and eliminating enemies along the way. Upon speaking with the Railroad leader, Desdemona, players are put through another quick trial before being considered for acceptance. If you feel that Synths and other somewhat-human individuals have rights and deserve a chance to live freely, then consider supporting the Railroad faction in its elusive endeavors. If you want to know how to begin searching for the Railroad hideout, follow the steps in our guide titled Fallout 4: How to Join the Railroad Faction.

The Institute

The Institute wishes to use its advanced technology to restore humanity to the way it was before.

Although the Railroad is portrayed as the most secretive of the factions, the Institute seems shrouded in even more rumors and mystery, at least at first. The other factions tend to be against the Institute and its goals. Since this faction is not encountered until near the end of the game, we won’t go into too much detail regarding what this organization is up to. We will say that the Institute intends to use its hyper-advanced technology to restore humanity to its previous ways, even if this means enslaving Synths.

The leader of the Institute, a man who goes simply by “Father”, attempts to recruit you to his cause only after you have engaged with several other factions. If you are convinced by their disposition, then consider completing quests for the Institute later in Act II. For the quest that leads to this faction, check out our guide titled Fallout 4: How to Join the Institute.

In the end, players must ultimately decide which faction to support based of what they’ve experienced with each group. Hopefully this guide has helped to put each of these factions into perspective, allowing you to make an informed choice about which one deserves your allegiance.

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Comments 3

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  • Avatar for Ithuriel #3 Ithuriel 3 months ago
    A useful guide, but it does not address what for me (or rather my character) is the most important question: who took my son and how can I get him back? I have been working on the assumption that the Institute took him, which means I could never work for them, even though their goals (from this brief guide) seem like the best. The BoS and the Railroad are both too extreme for my taste, so I guess I am left with the nostalgic minutemen.
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