V.A.T.S. Gauss Pistol Build | Fallout 76 Builds

Fallout 76 Gauss Pistol Build

(QUICK NOTE: These Builds are usable but NOT updated past the Steel Reign update. Until I get a chance to update all the builds, these should be thought of as more of a build starter)

Personally, my favorite pistol out of ALL the Fallout 76 pistols is the Gauss. It does stupid amounts of damage, has a crazy good range, and the explosive damage just makes it nuttier than ever. Not the easies to acquire, but definitely one of the best to use.


Fallout 76 Gauss Pistol Build

Perk Cards (Solo)

Perk Cards (Team)

Legendary Perk Cards

NukesDragons has a FANTASTIC Fallout 76 Character Builder, and if you’re looking to create a build concept BEFORE you go for the real thing, definitely check out:

NukesDragons Character Build Planner & Calculator


The Gauss Pistol is one of those frustrating ones that you need to purchase with Gold Bullion through the Settler’s Gold Bullion Vendor at their main city. This can be an INCREDIBLY frustrating grind to get your rep up to that point, but for this pistol it just may be worth it. MAYBE. 

ANYWHO! When you finally acquire the plan to craft this gun, there’s a couple different things you’ll want to watch out for when actually crafting it, and that would be the legendary perks you get. These are some of my recommended perks to watch out for.

Legendary Main Effects:

  1. Bloodied : More Damage the Lower your Health it
  2. Junkie’s : More Damage the more Addictions you have
  3. Anti-Armor : Ignores 50% of your enemies Armor
  4. Two Shot : Fires 2 projectiles per 1 shot
  5. Furious : Damage Increases every Consecutive Shot

Legendary Major Effects:

  1. +50% VATS Crit Shot Damage
  2. +33% VATS Hit Chance
  3. 50% Limb Damage

Legendary Minor Effects:

  1. 15% Faster Reload
  2. 25% Less VATS Action Point Cost
  3. 1 Agility
  4. 1 Perception

The one other thing you’ll want to considering is modifying the gun to maximize its damage, cause you can always squeeze more outta guns once you start slapping mods on them.

Recommended Gauss Shotgun Mods


  • Prime Receiver
    • Superior Damage, Bonus damage to Scorchbeasts and Scorched
  • Vicious Receiver
    • Reduced Durability, Better Accuracy, Improved Hip-fire Accuracy and Critical Shot Damage
  • Hardened Receiver
    • Reduced Durability, Superior Damage


  • Aligned Short Barrel
    • Improved Recoil and hip-Fire accuracy, Inferior durability


    • Drum Magazine
      • Superior Ammo Capacity


    • Reflex Sights
      • Improved Magnification, Superior Sighted Accuracy


    With the Gauss Pistol build, I would recommend NOT using power armor, just simply running any kind of regular armor that you prefer. Below I’ll show you what my personal favorite armor to wear is, it’s end-game stuff though so you might need to wear some of the basic stuff if you don’t have yourself the funds to purchase the expensive ones.

    Under Armor

    Under Armor can be one of the most essential pieces to your build, simply because it adds so much straight up damage resistance and SPECIAL bonuses. Remember, you DO NOT receive under armor bonuses while in Power Armor, you will only get the benefits from the Power Armor itself.

    The best one you’ll want to try and get is the Secret Service under armor providing:

    • +15 Damage resistance
    • +15 Energy Resistance
    • +15 Radiation Resistance

    With Shielded Lining:

    • +4 Strength
    • +2 Perception
    • +4 Endurance

    If you can’t get this under armor yet, which new players won’t for a good while, stick with any others you can get along the way, modding them with what you can! (Collect those plans!)

    Regular Armor

    Regular armor is totally up to the user on which they wear, but when we’re talking about Pistol builds… well, actually any build pretty much, you’re going to want to go with Secret Service armor, which is purchased with Gold Bullion after completing the Wastelander’s main campaign. It provides an insane amount of armor, better than anything else, and the ONLY problem is that you need to buy it at the extremely expensive price and then HOPE you roll some good perks on it.

    By the way, quick note, if you’re wanting to use a bloodied build with the Gauss Pistol (which is where Nerd Rage comes in handy, and damage goes crazy) you’ll want to definitely stick to either Unyielding or Bolstering if you’re dying a lot.

    If you can’t get Secret Service armor just yet, don’t worry about it, as long as you have armor like Combat Armor, Brotherhood Recon, or Marine Armor. Speaking of perks, these are the ones you’ll want to look out for:

    Legendary Main Effects:

    1. Unyielding
    2. Bolstering
    3. Vanguard’s

    Legendary Major Effects:

    1. Any of the +1 to SPECIAL
    2. Powered

    Legendary Minor Effects:

    1. 50% More durability
    2. Receive 15% less Limb Damage
    3. Ammo Weight Reduced by 20%
    4. Weapon Weight Reduced by 20%
    5. Food, Drink, and Chem Weight reduced by 20%
    6. Junk Weight Reduced by 20%

    Power Armor

    Just like regular Armor, Power Armor also has it’s “better” versions that are pretty much just superior to the rest. If you’re rocking Power Armor with a Gauss Pistol Build, you’ll want to get T-65. The T-65 Power Armor provides the absolute highest amount of damage resistances as possible, but also costs a fortune in Gold Bullion to purchase all the plans, so once again, use what you can. T-60, X-01, and Ultracite Power Armors are quite easy to come across just by completing the Enclave and Brotherhood questlines.

    For Power Armor Mods (because you’ll definitely want to mod them to make them the best) you’re wanting to look for:

    • Helmet: Internal Database – +2 Intelligance
      • Targeting Hud – Highlights Living Targets
    • Torso: Emergency Protocols – Benefits from being Bloodied
      • Jet Pack is also helpful
    • Arms: None of them will really help out a lot, don’t waste bullion
    • Legs: Calibrated Shocks – Carry weight +50 per mod


    This is for those of you that enjoy going out and absolutizing maximizing the damage output you can deal with your builds. Little do a lot of folks realize, taking the right foods and drastically boost the performance of your build, making it beyond worth it to gather these quick items.


    • Grilled Radstag: 
      • Super Easy to make, increases Carry weight by +20
    • Pumpkin Pie: 
      • Max Health +40
    • Smoked Mirelurk Filets: 
      • +250 HP and +30 Carry Weight
    • Blight Soup:
      • Critical Damage +20%
    • Megasloth Mushroom Soup: 
      • Critical Damage +20%


      • High Voltage Bock:
        • +15 Energy Damage BUT Increases the Condition Cost by 15%
      • Firecracker Berry Juice: 
        • +10% Critical Damage
      • Hard Lemonade: 
        • +30 Max AP and +10 AP Regen
      • Steeped Tea Thistle/Sweet Mutfruit Tea:
        • Critical Hit +20%


        • Marsupial
          • Carry Weight +20%, +Jump Height
        • Adrenal Reaction
          • Higher Weapon Damage the lower your HP
        • Speed Demon
          • +20 Faster Movement Speed +20% Faster Reload


          • Overdrive
            • +15% Damage, +15% Critical Damage
          • Pyscho
            • +25 Damage Resistance, +15% Damage
          • Pyschobuff
            • +25% Damage, Strength/Endurance +3, Max HP +65

          Magazines & Bobbleheads

          Thing about Magazines is that there are SO MANY of them that is can make it difficult to pick and choose between them all, whereas Bobbleheads are quite a bit easier as there are FAR less. Here are just my few suggestions:


          • Guns & Bullets #3 – “Little Guns for the Ladies”
            • +30% Critical Damage with Ballistic Guns
          • Live & Love #2 – “Nuke-The-Man”
            • +5% Damage when in a Team
          • Tesla Science #7 – “U.S. Army Goes to Space”
            • +30% Energy Gun Critical Damage
          • Tesla Science #8 – “10 Number 1 Hits!!!”
            • +15% Critical Damage


          • Small Guns
            • +20% Damage with Small Weapons
          • Energy Weapons
            • +25% Damage with Energy Weapons

          More Guides