Fallout 4

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About this mod

A customisable loot re-balance/reduction mod that's as close to the vanilla balance possible. This mod is for people who find themselves with too many useful items, and want to feel the challenge of scarcity that was much more prevalent in previous games, and is glaringly absent from Fallout 4.

Permissions and credits
This mod is now available for Xbox One! Download it on the Bethesda Website.
I could make a feature restricted PS4 version, but I'm not going to. If someone else wants to, contact me.

For me, the completely unbalanced loot system in Fallout 4 makes the list of top problems in the game. You can change the game difficulty all you want, you're still going to end up with enough Stimpaks to fully heal yourself 50 times over, and so much ammunition that you stopped counting 15 levels ago.

Difficulty should mean more than how much damage you deal/take
I was appalled to find that Fallout 4 Survival Mode didn't make any adjustments to how much loot you find, sure the challenges it presents can be quite fun in the beginning - but after a couple hours of play, you've collected a large amount of any item you could ever need, and none of those challenges hold any weight. You might as well be playing vanilla.

But the normal game faces the same problem, I can set the difficulty as high as I like, I'm still able to un-endingly heal myself, buff myself up with any of the 40 chems I'm carrying, and spray out bullets like I'm playing Wolfenstein.

LootBalance is my effort to answer this problem by introducing the missing challenge of scarcity into Fallout 4, in order to create a more compelling scavenging experience. The useful items that are way to common in the base game will be found considerably less, making them a far more valuable resource to the player. Whether they be Stimpaks, healing items, radiation meds, bobby pins, grenades, ammunition, or other - finding them will incur a moment of gratefulness rather than the automatic response of throwing them onto the pile.

There are a few loot overhaul mods out there that all have their benefits and negatives, with this mod though I have tried to retain as much of the vanilla distribution of loot as possible, just with less of it. You'll feel like you're playing Fallout 4 with the difficulty option that should have been there from the beginning.

(All are optional)

Find Less Items
Affects containers and the Worldspace/Interior cells. Includes:
  • Stimpaks, Radaway, and Rad-X and other health items.
  • Enhancement Chems.
  • Food and drink.
  • Grenades.
  • Bobby Pins.
  • Valuable Junk.
  • Ammunition.

  • Health Items have been adjusted to complement the reduction of Stimpaks.
  • Food takes twice as long to heal you and the HP yield is reduced by a third (generally).
  • Some Junk items have had their components and other properties adjusted.
  • Some Food items have had their values boosted (like alcohol).
  • Some Post-war items no longer spawn in Pre-war locations.
  • Extreme mode - It's LootBalance but with a giant middle finger in every First Aid Kit.
  • Break down and craft ammunition to account for the reduction.

No Fusion Cores in Fours is included with LootBalance, but is still available independently.

Containers and Worldspace/Interior Cells
The leveled lists used to decide what spawns in containers have been adjusted to change the chances of different items spawning. The items that spawn have been kept as close to the base game's as possible, just with a lower chance of spawning.

Hundreds, maybe thousands of items have been removed from the Worldspace and Interior cells. The general method for choosing which were removed was based on the number in the cell. If there was only one of a particular item, like Radaway, in a cell, then it got removed. Generally, if there was more than one of an item, then one of them would be picked at random to remain, while the rest were deleted. Sometimes multiple items would be picked to remain, depending on how many there were in the cell, what the item was, or where it was (many chems remain in Vault 81, for example). Dummy objects (objects that are placed at random) have not been removed, but will likely have adjusted lists.

If you're interested in how I did this: I would use FO4Edit to select every placement record of the item and add the Deleted Initially Disabled flag. I'd then look through each cell to find ones with more than one item, pick out the ones I didn't want deleted initially disabled, and remove the Deleted Initially Disabled flag. This was definitely the most arduous part of the project, especially before I realised I could add the flag to multiple items at once :) Thanks to payl0ad for warning me about the conflicts the Deleted flag can cause.

Hardcore Mode
This mod was designed for both normal and survival difficulties. However, no changes have been made one change has been made* to the features and items added by Hardcore Mode. I'll possibly make a patch for it if it's requested.

*The main file reduces the gold value of some food and drink items, little did I realise this is how the Survival script calculates the fulfilment value for hunger/thirst. There's a separate patch on the downloads page which doubles that fulfilment value for all items (not beyond the maximum cap already in the game).

NPC Items
NPCs can spawn with Grenades or Stimpaks, and can drop Stimpaks on death. It's difficult to edit these because it means the NPC won't be able to use them during combat, affecting the gameplay. Because of this, they won't drop Stimpaks on death anymore, but the chances of them spawning with Grenades or Stimpaks to use in combat are unchanged.

Stimpaks, Radiation Meds, and Chems
Items in Medkits (which include Stimpaks, Purified Water, Radaway, Rad-X, and Blood Packs) now have a much smaller chance of spawning. This results in Medkits almost always being empty. This change sounds radical, and it is - but you could cut the amount of Stimpaks in the game by 75% and you'd still have more than you'd ever use. With the reduced spawn rates, all these items still occur outside of Medkits enough to keep you afloat. I've included an optional "Flavour Junk" addon, which will add a bit of random medical junk to the Medkits, just so they aren't always empty.

Basic enhancement Chems (Buffout, Med-X, Mentats, Jet and Psycho) will occur less in containers and the world, while advanced Chems like X-Cell, JetFuel, or Flavoured Mentats are unchanged.

Food and Drink
The spawn rate of Food items has been slightly reduced, while Nuka-Cola and it's variants have been reduced further, both in containers and vending machines (this doesn't yet include the variant Nuka-Colas added by the Nuka-World DLC).

With the Health module, the health value of all food and drink has been reduced, and the time it takes to take effect lengthened, making Stimpaks the only viable option for quick healing during combat.

Explosives boxes and other containers will yield less Frag Grenades, Frag Mines, and Molotov Cocktails. Other Grenades are unchanged. Explosive Mines in the Worldspace/Interior cells are unchanged.

Bobby Pins
Bobby Pins occur less in containers and the Worldspace/Interior Cells, and Bobby Pin Boxes yield less. Most of the time Bobby Pin Boxes will give you one Bobby Pin, but there is a small chance they won't yield any, and a small chance they will yield more.

Many component values for Junk items have been altered slightly either for immersion or balance. Many of these are hardly noticeable, but many valuable components have been reduced or removed from some items. Most notably, the components in Institute tools have been massively changed, as you can go on a scavenging spree around the Institute, finish by shooting Father in the face, and be kicked out with 50+ Nuclear Material and more aluminium than you'd know what to do with.

Adhesive is the one component that's been increased in some of it's items, like Duct Tape, but those items spawn less in toolboxes, which should lead to a net reduction. Also fans only have one screw now because f*** you for wanting to mod weapons.

Health Items Rebalanced
Version 1.2 introduces a new module I've been working on, which aims to improve on the way healing works in the base game using only changes to current items and the addition of new ones. Stimpak effectiveness has been reduced across all medic perks. To counterbalance this, two new bandage items have been added, which heal greater amounts of HP over a longer period of time. This is because of an issue that arises when Stimpaks are rarer - the player becomes more dependent on food, a woefully unbalanced system this module hopes to correct, including a reduction in the health effects of food by a third (generally). I've gone into further detail about the reasoning here.

This module has been made with both Normal and Hardcore modes in mind. On that note, the extra time healing takes in Hardcore mode has been undone, as it counters the goals of this module.

Any feedback would be incredibly helpful, no matter how in-depth, as for all intents and purposes it's "experimental", and I don't know how people will find it. Based on feedback, I might make changes to this module, expand it further, and possibly make it an independent mod, as it's purposes go a bit beyond the original goal of LootBalance.

Extreme Mode
Do you hate how in Fallout 4, you open containers and there's things in there? Well this module is for you! First Aid Kits have only 5% chance of having something f***ing useful in them, and all placed Stimpaks have been removed from the Worldspace/Interior Cells (Except one in Vault 111, and ones that spawn with dummies). Additionally, NPCs spawn with less Stimpaks and Grenades, and Vendors hide all their aid when they see you approaching, because they know that's the only reason you're here (They still have aid, just much less of it).

This module is experimental and likely has some blind spots and need further adjustment. If you'd like to see these problems fixed, then tell me what they are.

After months of the mod being out, I've finally added proper ammunition modules. One of the solutions to the problem I add with reducing ammunition was to add ammo crafting, basically allowing you to break down ammo you're not using and craft it into ammo you do. There are already multiple ammunition crafting mods out there, but none of them quite worked how I wanted them to, so I made one myself.

You can now break down batches of ammunition to get a new component, Smokeless Powder, as well as other vanilla components needed to craft ammunition. Smokeless Powder can also be created from scratch, requiring bags of fertiliser, among other things, which have had their acid component replaced with Nitric Acid, to make it harder to create.

Everything is done at the Chemistry Station. I might make a ammunition crafting workbench, but it's not really necessary. I haven't changed any of the recipes for the Contraptions Workshop yet, I'd like to get round to it soon. I might also make a Contraptions Workshop "exclusive" mode that means you have to use the factory pieces to craft ammunition, just because it'd be fun.

I might make this an independent mod when it's finished, simply because it would work well as one, we'll see.

There are two ammunition reduction modules you can play with, one with moderate reduction, one with massive reduction. All the modules are experimental and are subject to further changes and additions, and probably require quite a bit of balancing.

Also, none of it affects ammunition added by DLC. I'll get round to it eventually.

This mod has no special requirements other than an up to date version of Fallout 4.

DLC patches are available during installation.

Mod Compatibility Patches are available during installation for:
Armor and Weapon Keywords Community Resource 8.51
Valdacil's Item Sorting 9.0.3
VIS-G Item Sorting 2.7

LootBalance and should not be used in conjunction with any loot overhaul/rebalance mod. It will very likely conflict with any mod which modifies Levelled Lists or World/Interior Cell References for the items detailed above. If you're using mods which modify the same Levelled Lists or Cell references, I recommend they are loaded after LootBalance.

No Fusion Cores in Fours is included with LootBalance, and should not be installed separately.

The Unofficial Fallout 4 Patch is not required for this mod to work, but changes it makes to relevant records are included.

The optional patch LootBalance Survial is incompatible with any mod which changes the stock script HC_Manager. I've checked some of the top Survival mods,
and these include Survival Options and Survival stats widget. Many other mods still work such as Survival Mode Console Enabler or Unlimited Survival Mode - F4SE.

Download and load the file with your chosen mod manager, and the installation process will let you choose your configuration.

If installing manually, instructions are available in the README.txt included with the file.

Load Order
Unless you stall the Comprehensive version, LootBalance will install several modules, a few of which are meant to override eachother, so correctly setting your load order is important.

LootBalance_Health.esp and LootBalance_Extreme.esp must be loaded after basically every other module, but before any patches for other mods.
LootBalance_Extreme.esp must be loaded after LootBalance_Health.esp. Failure to sort your load order properly won't break your game, but might result in unexpected behaviour.

Any patches for other mods must be loaded after their corresponding modules. Any patches for LootBalance_Health.esp (e.g. LootBalance_Patch_VIS_Health.esp) must be loaded after said file *and* any patch for other modules.

Load order rules for other modules aren't really important since there're barely any conflicts (the installer accounts for conflicts that do happen), you can group them together or let your mod manager scatter them across your load order. When conflicting with other mods I'd generally advise loading the modules before the other mod, it depends on what you'd prefer to take priority.

To uninstall, disable the mod with your mod manager, or read the instructions available in the README.txt file for manual uninstallation.

As of the first upload, LootBalance is feature complete, with possible updates for bug-fixing or balance tuning patches. However, there are quite a few ideas I'd like to implement, either as updates or independent mods, especially in the Ammunition department, as it's the weakest part of this mod. I can't promise you'll see any feature updates to this mod, it entirely depends on what I want to work on in the future, and if I'm actually successful in making them.

If you have suggestions for changes or additions I could make to LootBalance, please let me know. If they're good ideas that're easy enough to implement, I'll likely add them.

Intended Updates - I intend to make the following feature updates to this mod, however I don't guarantee any of them will be made:
  • Vendor item adjustments, aimed at Hardcore mode. Complete, Update 1.4
  • "Extreme" mode for the masochists to compliment the current balance. Complete, Update 1.4
  • Scrounger and Scrapper perk updates.
  • Further work on Ammo, no specifics. Complete, Update 1.5
  • World item removal for food items.
  • More reduction in valuable junk.
  • Reduction in higher level Grenades.
  • Reduction in higher level Chems.
  • Possible look at Weapons and Armor, depends on feedback.
  • Less stupid manual installation. Complete, Update 1.1
  • Adjustments and crafting capability to ammunition added by DLC.
  • Contraptions Workshop adjusted for ammunition crafting.

I'll possibly create a .ba2 supported version if it's requested, but the mod adds so few resources it didn't seem necessary.

The installer won't function properly when using Mod Organiser 2 (and possibly other installers). Instructions to fix this are available in LootBalance\fomod_MO\README.txt, or on the first step of the installer.

Installation may cause the cell reset bug on current saves, putting new items in containers that have been looted, etc. The exact conditions for this aren't very clear and there isn't a fix. Uninstalling can have the same effect. It isn't clear what happens when the mod is updated, I guess it depends on the content. I'm testing each update on old saves to see what the results are.

Uninstalling will cause previously removed items to come back, though really, that's kind of the point.

I haven't seen any circumstances in which items previously taken from the world by the player have respawned.

This is the first big mod I've created, which took many hours of work over more than a month. Its been a very useful introduction into modding Fallout 4, and has taught me a lot - so I hope to create more in the future.

I'm very grateful for any advice or feedback you can provide, and if you find any problems, please contact me or file a bug report.

With update 1.3 I have enabled donations, as this project has required many hours of work and I hope to continue working on it for as long as possible. Donations are entirely voluntary as a way of saying thank you, and showing your support for continued development of this mod.

If you want to take your survival experience even further, then I recommend Horizon. It isn't compatible with this mod, but has it's own loot overhaul as part of it's far extended survival experience. This mod was kind of created as a lightweight alternative.

My other mods currently include:
No Fusion Cores in Fours (Included with this mod)
Moldy T-51 Helmet (A surprisingly successful joke mod)

Created by me, Herby.

Special thanks to Wenderer for their FOMOD Creation Tool

a_blind_man for their Levelled List Injection Tool

And to ElminsterAU and the xEdit Team for the brilliant tool FO4Edit, which was used to create this mod.

All assets in this mod belong to me, Herby, or have been modified from the files provided with Fallout 4 by Bethesda. This excludes files from the third-party mods listed above, who at the time of publishing have provided permission for them to be used freely in other projects.

I support the modding community being open, and give permission for anyone to use any and all files in this mod in their own projects, subject to the conditions detailed at the top of the page. This excludes the files from the third-party mods listed above, which should be downloaded directly from their hosts (current links provided), and credited appropriatley. I will not consider allowing the files to be used in mods that require payment of any kind.