Money Making Guide by Sange13

Version: 1.0 | Updated: 01/08/12 | Printable Version

Life As A High-Roller, In The Fast Lane
by Sange13

1. Intro
2. Starting Out
3. Caravan
4. The Strip
5. The Casinos and Blackjack
6. Targets of Opportunity
7. Final Thoughts
8. Version Info
9. Legal
|- Intro -|
This guide is intended to be as spoiler free as 
possible, but does contain some minor spoilers. I wrote 
this guide because I found that certain merchants in 
the game have really expensive loot, but at the early 
stage that I encountered them, I was counting the lint 
in my pockets. There wasn't an existing FAQ to help 
make some fast and easy caps without using some kind of 
cheat, bug, or exploit, and those ruin games for me. 
After a few different characters and some practice, I 
found some good methods to achieve enough wealth to 
afford the majority of anything I could want from those 
So here I will point out some of the things I have 
learned in the hopes that it will benefit you, and help 
you set your new character up for the long road ahead.
One final disclaimer: This is not a walkthrough of the 
game. There are other guides for that all over the web. 
This guide is intended to point you in the right 
direction when you reach certain points in the game, as 
well as provide some general advice.
|- Starting Out -|
There many ways to build your character, and many 
styles to choose from. The only aspect of your 
character creation that has noticeably varying results 
from the advice and tips in this guide is your LUCK 
stat. This is primarily important for clearing out the 
casinos later on. I personally start with a LUCK of 6, 
put one more in through the Intense Training perk, and 
purchase the implant to bring it to 8. That said, the 
perk is completely optional, and you can get your LUCK 
to 8 through other means. More on that later.
During the tutorial phase, it's usually a good idea to 
set your character up in such a way that they can pass 
most of the skill checks available in Goodsprings. 
While not a comprehensive list, here's some of what you 
will need:
Speech 25 (Trudy's allies)
Explosives 25 (Easy Pete's dynamite)
Barter 25 (Chet's supplies)
Repair 25 (fix the radio)
Medicine 30 (before leaving Doc Mitchel's house, talk 
to him again after you get your Pip-Boy)
Lockpick 25 (for most locks) or 50 (for the safe in 
Sunny Smiles' house)
You can also take the Swift Learner perk during this 
phase of the game to maximize the gain from the 
creatures and the skill checks. After you have 
recruited all of the assistance that you can, but 
before going back to Ringo, you can leave Goodsprings 
to head to the NCR prison for the quest "I Fought The 
Law." If you choose to do this, make sure to rebuild 
your character how you really want them when you leave 
town as this will be the last opportunity to make 
I recommend having a base LUCK of 6 or 7. I also 
recommend raising the Lockpick skill to 50 before 
leaving the NCRCF.
There are many locks to be picked on the road to The 
Strip, and the majority of them are only Average (50) 
or lower. It is also useful to have a Speech of 30 or 
better, even if your CHARISMA is only 1.
When you are done with Goodsprings, the NCRCF, Primm, 
and Mojave Outpost, you will want to be sure to raid 
some of the houses in Nipton. They have various energy 
weapons and safes that are worth the detour. The next 
major stop will be in Novac. The main thing you want 
out of here is That Gun from the Dino Bite Gift Shop. 
The key is that you want to steal it without getting 
caught. You only have to pass a Very Easy lock and 
close the door behind you. This is a great early gun if 
you are using Guns as a major skill, but it's also 
worth a good number of caps if you choose not to use 
As you make your way to The Strip, try not to spend too 
many caps. You will want a couple thousand saved up.
|- Caravan -|
Seeing as how there is already a fairly good Caravan 
guide, I'll refer you to that:
The main difference between my play and the author of 
that guide is that I prefer to run only 6's, 10's, 
Kings, and Jacks.
Just keep the deck at 30, but replace everything you 
can with one of those four types of cards. The primary 
strategy is about the same, but I feel my set up offers 
more strategic flexibility since the AI likes to hit a 
lot of my cards with Jacks.
Caravan is a great way to make easy money once you get 
the hang of it. Ringo in Goodsprings, Johnson Nash in 
Primm, Cliff Briscoe in Novac, and many others all 
play. If you rob--erm, win--caps from people you meet 
on the way to The Strip, it isn't hard to have your net 
winnings exceed two or three thousand caps by the time 
you get there. This is also a good way to get your caps 
back if you spent a lot on a merchant who plays.
|- The Strip -|

Before you get to the strip, you will want to make sure 
you either have 7 LUCK and the Naughty Nightware from 
Mick & Ralph's "select goods" (Speech of 30/50, 
respectively), OR have 8 LUCK as a base stat through 
S.P.E.C.I.A.L., perks, and the implant. The implant 
costs 4,000 caps, but easily pays for itself in the 
end. You can get it from Dr. Usanagi in her medical 
office next to the Crimson Caravan compound.
You may be asking, "Why is this guy so obsessed with 
LUCK?" Or you don't care, and you're just following 
Either way, LUCK directly influences you odds at the 
casino games. While it is possible to reach the maximum 
winnings with a LUCK of 7, it takes much, much longer 
to do so. With a LUCK of 8 (or higher), you can 
comfortably win big and win often.
When you get to the outskirts of the strip, more 
commonly known as Freeside, you will want to head over 
to the Old Mormon Fort right away. Enter, and take an 
immediate right, follow the wall to the door in the 
corner, enter, go upstairs, and grab the snowglobe on 
the shelf. Leave the fort. Head over to Mick & Ralph's, 
pass the Speech check, and get the Naughty Nightwear. 
Even if you already have a LUCK of 8, this will help 
speed the process. You will want to clean out The 
Atomic Wrangler before you head into The Strip proper, 
but you can skip this step until the next section if 
you like.
Once on The Strip, go through the gate to the other 
side and keep going until you find the Vault 21 Hotel. 
Go inside, and go through the door on the far wall, 
down the stairs, and into the vault. Once inside, head 
to the bottom floor (with the diner on it), and head to 
the northeast section of the building.
When you find the only closed and locked door (50 
skill), sneak, pick the lock, and go in. On the table 
against the wall you will find a snowglobe. Take it, 
then leave the hotel. 
Go across the street to the NCR embassy. Inside, find 
the NCR embassador, and challenge him to Caravan. You 
can rob him of almost 2,000 caps by taking advantage of 
his bad play and gambling addiction.

Go back to the Lucky 38, meet Mr. House, go to the 
Cocktail Lounge, take a right (hugging the inner 
counter) and you should find another snowglobe behind a 
cash register. Take all four of them up to his "woman" 
robot for 8,000 caps.
Now the fun begins.
|- The Casinos and Blackjack -|
There are a total of four casinos to "clear" before you 
cannot gain money from them this way:
The Atomic Wrangler - Run by the Garrets, this casino 
has the lowest maximum payout. ~5,000 caps.
Gomorrah - Run by the Omertas. ~9,000 caps.
The Tops - Run by the Chairmen. -10,000 caps.
The Ultralux - Run by The White Glove Society. ~15,000 
It's clear to see that this will be our bread and 
butter. At nearly 40,000 caps, this is a worthwhile 
target indeed. With our high LUCK, this will be a cake 
walk. Whichever casino you choose to start at is up to 
you, but be sure to play 10 games of Roulette and Slots 
before heading to the Blackjack tables so you can pick 
up some easy experience (challenges).
The reason you want to focus on Blackjack is that it is 
the game that relies the least on actual luck (not just 
the LUCK stat). With a high enough LUCK, slots are a 
viable way to max out your winnings as well. Roulette 
is too inconsistent for my tastes, so I wouldn't go 
that route (though the payouts can be quite tempting).
For those who don't know, I will explain the rules of 
The goal is to get as close to a sum total of 21 
without going over as possible. 
The player with the closest number wins.
Players who go over "bust" and lose automatically.
Each player is dealt a card face up, and one face down.
Number cards are worth the value shown.
Face cards are worth 10.
Aces are worth 1 or 11, at player discretion (the game 
handles this automatically).
If a player is dealt a hand that sums 21, he 
automatically wins unless tied with another player who 
was dealt the same.
Players may "hit" to draw another card. There is no 
limit to the number of cards a player may have until 
they bust.
If a player is dealt two cards of identical value, he 
may "split" and play them as two separate hands.
A player may "double down" to risk twice his bet to 
draw one more card. He may not draw again after.
The dealer must draw until he reaches at least 17, or 
busts in the attempt.
With that out of the way, LUCK plays a significant role 
in the outcomes of the game. With a score as high as 
ours, we can consistently and quickly make gains 
despite our losses if we follow these guidelines:
Only stand on an 18 or higher. Yes, this means hit on 
17. LUCK will help keep a lot of these cards low.
Don't bother with Splits. They don't yield any higher 
of a payout, but they make the process take longer.
If dealth a sum of 10, or 11, Double Down. LUCK will 
keep many of these cards high.
Always bet maximum.
Always taunt the Floor Manager after he bans you from 
gambling in his casino.
|- Targets of Opportunity -|
So now that we've cleaned out The Strip and broke the 
bank, we should have a lot of money, right? Wrong! The 
thirst of our greed is not so easily slaked. Now that 
we've made money the legal way, our resources are 
starting to look quite dry.
As so many other great minds of history (Al Capone, 
Jimmy Hoffa, the oil industry) have shown, it's time to 
turn to crime if we really want to be rich. It's a good 
idea to establish a "safe house" to keep your regular 
gear and spare loot before we head out. The suite in 
the Lucky 38 is just fine, but set yourself up wherever 
you're comfortable. The other important thing we will 
need is a good fence. I prefer to use the Gun Runners' 
Vendortron. Here we go:
The Silver Rush, Freeside:
Upon entering for the first time, DO NOT go past the 
guards until they leave their position. They will 
mention there is a "meeting" going on, but you can 
observe through the chain-link fence. After that's all 
done, head down the hall on the left wall from the 
entrance and open the door (it leads to the bathrooms). 
Then use whichever button/key you have assigned to 
manipulate objects without picking them up to grab 
everything of value and throw it in a pile in the hall 
there. When you are finished, go in the hall, close the 
door, sneak, SAVE, and grab everything up. When the 
guard gives you a supsicious look on your way out, just 
casually remark that you were only "browsing."
Nellis Air Force Base (Boomer territory):
I'll skip the part about how to get in, but don't 
forget that there's a couple dead Brotherhood bodies 
with perfectly sellable Power Armor on them in the 
ruined town just outside, after you convince the 
Boomers to not blast you into microdust. The first 
thing you want to do is head to the museum building, 
and grab the snowglobe off the desk in there. Then head 
to the munitions storage hangar, and locate the 
Munitions Supply Manager. Sell whatever you want to 
offload to him until he no longer has caps for you, 
then SAVE. You will want to sneak on the other side of 
his stall and use the wooden boxes to block his view of 
you. Steal EVERYTHING using a method similar to the 
Silver Rush robbery. Try not to break this stuff down 
via repair if it's condition is over 50% since many of 
these weapons are worth 1,000 caps or more each. Be 
sure to turn in the snowglobe later.
Camp McCarran AFB
This place isn't nearly as much of a jackpot as the 
other two, but it's worth noting that a couple of the 
big tents in the middle of the main outdoor area have 
some easy to lift goods. One of the tents is a medical 
supply cache, and the one right next to it has a bunch 
of gun cabinets and ammo boxes. There are also lots of 
ammo boxes, footlockers, and random other lootable 
containers all over the base.
|- Final Thoughts -|
Between the 5 snowglobes, the casino winnings, and the 
Caravan winnings, you should easily have over 50,000 
caps. If you went on the little crime spree, I suspect 
you should have another 10-20 thousand (at least). I 
hope that's enough for you to buy all the implants and 
equipment you had your eyes on. If so, I can claim 
mission success. 
This is my first guide on GameFAQs, so I would 
appreciate some feedback to let me know if you found 
this helpful, or if you know of some other great places 
or ways to make a lot of caps in a short amount of 
time. I must stipulate that I will not endorse the use 
of any hacks, glitches, exploits, bugs, and so on 
within my guide. Fair warning. I check the GameFAQs 
boards fairly frequently, so send your comments, 
questions, critique, etc as a private message to me on 
|- Version Info -|
Version 1.0, 01-07-12
|- Legal -|
Copyright 2012 James Boger
This guide is copyright protected. Users have my 
permission to view, print, and link this guide for 
personal use.
This guide is not to be used for profit of any kind. 
Other uses of this guide must follow the restrictions 
given by GameFAQs.