Many fans would argue that Fallout: New Vegas is the best in the series. Released in 2010, the game has aged considerably in the intervening years. The fact that gamers keep coming back to it, again and again, is a testament to its superb overall quality. The RPG mechanics are one-of-a-kind, with the game combining the best of both the old-school Fallout games along with modern innovations to make for a brilliant role-playing experience that continues to be Obsidian Entertainment’s magnum opus to this day.
However, there’s no getting around the fact that visually, Fallout: New Vegas is a fossil. Luckily, as with most products associated with Bethesda and Obsidian, the modding community is quite active. With the right essential graphics mods in place, this game can be given a new lease on life. These mods should serve as the core of any player’s load order.
Updated December 31, 2023, by Ritwik Mitra: Despite not having enough time to polish the game or add as much content as they wanted, New Vegas still managed to be one of the deepest and most engaging role-playing games fans can get their hands on, with some people calling it the peak of the series. Players who want to check out Fallout: New Vegas right now will be well-serviced by a wealth of visual mods that help the game’s visuals age better. While some people wouldn’t mind the original look of this title, players checking out this game for the umpteenth time wouldn’t mind messing around with the visuals of this brilliant game.
Fallout: New Vegas – 27 Mods That Make It Feel Like A Brand New Game
While performance mods are fantastic, some of the most exciting mods are those that overhaul the feeling of New Vegas entirely and make it feel new.
21 Ultra-Luxe Interior Retexture
Interior lighting overhauls go far beyond general improvements. There’s also an abundance of lighting mods that focus on specific locations. Many of these mods are geared toward making the Strip look even more impressive, particularly on the inside.
One great example that’s hard not to mention is the Ultra-Luxe Interior Retexture mod. According to the inhabitants of the Strip, the Ultra-Luxe is arguably the most luxurious casino in New Vegas. This mod aims to capture that magnificence by upgrading the textures and their color scheme. It makes the casino look just as impressive as it’s described by the in-game inhabitants.
20 Audleys Misc. Textures
Even the most comprehensive of texture mods tend to miss a detail or two. Oftentimes, players are forced to install small, individual mods that retexture just a single object. It can all become a bit cumbersome, especially if one decides not to use a mod manager.
Audleys Misc. Textures is a highly useful mod that helps fill in some of the blanks without the need to hunt down individual retexture mods. The scope of the add-on is modest, but it’s very well-made and can save fans some extra time when giving the overall visuals an upgrade.
19 3D Rain
Rain in Fallout: New Vegas isn’t anything to write home about. Sure, it gets the job done, but that’s about it. The flat textures look horrid when viewed from certain angles, which can take away some of the atmosphere from the world for players who find immersion to be incredibly important in a video game.
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These NPCs in the nuclear desert wasteland have more going on than meets the eye.
For these players, the 3D Rain mod is the perfect solution to their problems. As the name of the mod suggests, players can now enjoy the rain weather effect without being taken aback by its low quality. Rain doesn’t look weird when players look upwards, which is a welcome change that isn’t too intrusive.
18 High-Resolution Water Fog
Aliasing is one of the worst things that can completely ruin a player’s visual immersion because of how intrusive it can be. The last thing anyone wants to see is jagged edges that make the game look worse than it should and old games like Fallout: New Vegas suffer from this the most. This is especially apparent when players see structures underwater, which can look rather jagged and poor.
This is where the High-Resolution Water Fog mod will prove to be a major help in every way. It fixes this issue, which shouldn’t crop up on most modern systems with decent hardware anyway. It may be a simple mod, but players who found this aliasing to be particularly grating will consider this mod a lifesaver for their eyes!
17 Lumen – Ambient Lighting
With the advent of ray-tracing, many people have realized just how much of an important role a game’s lighting plays to make its visuals stand out. This simple change has tweaked both new and existing games at a level that most people still can’t fathom. While it’s impossible right now to add ray-tracing to Fallout: New Vegas because of the game’s dated and unstable engine, there are still ways to make the game’s lighting stand out even more.
The Lumen – Ambient Lighting mod is a great example of what video game mods can do with minimal changes. The sheer improvement in the game’s atmosphere after downloading this mod is impressive and adds to the game world without being too intrusive. It’s a great, simple mod for Fallout: New Vegas fans who want to immerse themselves in this game’s world as much as possible.
16 High-Resolution Bloom
PC players love to tweak every aspect of the games they play, so it’s easy to see why any mod that lets them customize a particular graphical element would be coveted by fans. The High-Resolution Bloom mod not only increases the quality of the bloom that is present in this game but allows players to configure exactly how it functions as well.
Fallout New Vegas: The 10 Best Gameplay Mods
Despite its age, Fallout New Vegas still has a dedicated playerbase. These amazing mods change just enough to make the game feel new.
Given how prominent of a role bloom plays in areas like New Vegas, it’s only a given that players would want the central city of this game to look as beautiful as possible. With this customized bloom setting, players can make this city pop out at night in the best way possible!
Sometimes, the simplest mods end up being the very best ones of the lot. Such is the case with the Moonlight mod, which changes the way light works at night so that shadows are cast in the right direction.
Given how much the Gamebyro Engine creaks and buckles under the weight of more resource-intensive mods, it’s easy to see why the Moonlight mod is such a breath of fresh air. It may not seem all that impressive, but any player who prioritizes immersion in their games will love what this mod brings to the table.
14 PipBoy 3000 HD Retexture
The PipBoy is perhaps the Fallout franchise’s most ubiquitous gadget. It serves as a menu for the player to organize their items, gear, and weapons. The all-important map of the Mojave Wasteland is also accessed through the PipBoy. Anything important is contained within this wrist-mounted tool.
As such, it’s likely the player will be pulling up their PipBoy every few minutes. The PipBoy 3000 HD Retexture mod, although small, is pretty important. Why look at the same ugly texture for hundreds of hours on end? The mod upgrades the gadget’s resolution, making it much crisper and easier on the eyes.
13 Vanilla HUD Remastered
Before getting into the meatier graphical enhancements, there’s a very simple add-on to install first. Players are no doubt familiar with New Vegas‘s HUD. When looking to upgrade the visuals of the game as a whole, it’s important not to neglect this small detail.
Vanilla HUD Remastered is an essential mod to have in one’s repertoire. It updates the HUD to either an HD or 4K resolution. The crispness of the details is such that once installed, it’s almost impossible to play the game without it.
12 Rudy ENB
ENBs are not graphics mods in and of themselves. They add and improve a game’s post-processing effects, heightening the visual fidelity of the graphics far beyond what was initially intended by the developers. ENBs tie all graphics mods together, making them look their very best.
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A great choice for Fallout: New Vegas is Rudy ENB. It gives everything a stunning photorealistic quality to it without tanking one’s PC. When combined with the above mods Fallout: New Vegas will look amazing. It just might make you want to reinstall the game and experience it from a new (and sleeker) perspective.
11 Improved Robots Textures
Having human characters look their best is all well and good. But the inhabitants of the Fallout universe are varied. Robots are a common sight, coming in a diverse range of makes and models. They deserve to look the best they can too.
For a comprehensive all-in-one mod regarding robots, Improved Robots Textures is an excellent choice. From Sentry Bots to Mr. Handys and everything in between, this mod ensures all robots receive a much-needed makeover.
10 MGs Neat Clutter Retextures
Fallout: New Vegas is filled to the brim with clutter or otherwise useless junk. Nevertheless, it does serve a purpose. It reinforces the atmosphere of a post-apocalyptic world, one where civilization itself is brought back to its infancy.
Looking at these objects is a regular occurrence. Enhancing the look of the myriad junk items scattered about the environment shouldn’t be ignored. MGs Neat Clutter Retextures improves the graphical fidelity of over 200 objects, from globes to pencils and everything in between.
9 OJO BUENO Texture Pack
Yet another massive texture package, this one performs very well with the previous mod on this list. OJO BUENO is fairly customizable as it contains three different performance levels depending on the player’s PC. The highest quality textures require more VRAM when it comes to OJO BUENO.
The “High” setting is arguably the best choice. The textures will still look great without the “Ultra” setting. It’s best to strike a good balance between performance and quality, especially if the player intends to have a monster load order. It’s a must-have when shooting for maximum coverage with textures.
8 FNV Realistic Wasteland Lighting
Although it may not always seem like it, a game’s lighting has a substantial effect when it comes to graphics. Things like shadows and reflections enhance the atmosphere in small, but significant ways. Vanilla Fallout: New Vegas is lacking in this department.
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FNV Realistic Wasteland Lighting aims to fix that problem. According to the mod page, it improves “lighting, weather, clouds, stars, the moon, and the overall look and feel of the wasteland.” Feeling as if the player is outdoors is the main aim of this mod.
7 Interior Lighting Overhaul
Improved lighting on the outside is all well and good, but the interior also requires similar treatment. As far as atmosphere is concerned, the argument can be made that lighting is even more important when it comes to interior locations.
Interior Lighting Overhaul is hands-down one of the best mods out there. Afternoon sunlight gleams through windows. Vaults are appropriately dark and creepy. When combined with the previous mod, Interior Lighting Overhaul properly accentuates the game’s already excellent atmosphere.
6 Enhanced Blood Textures
Let’s face it, Fallout: New Vegas is a pretty violent game. Enemies can be dispatched and decapitated in several gruesome ways. There’s even a perk called “Bloody Mess” that makes certain executions even more of a gory spectacle.
For fans looking for that added realism, improving the textures of the blood is essential. Enhanced Blood Textures is the quintessential mod that accomplishes this purpose. Blood spatter looks better than ever and certainly turns combat encounters into a more visceral performance.
5 Wasteland Flora Overhaul
The Wasteland Flora Overhaul mod does exactly what its name implies. It retouches a lot of the assets contained in the wilderness, specifically the foliage. The mod also possesses a couple of different customization options when it comes to upgrading the environment.
The main version of the mod, known as the “Fertile” setting, re-textures the vanilla models while also adding new ones for more variety. Older versions of the mod just enhance the vanilla textures without any new additions. No matter which settings are chosen the environment will see a marked improvement regardless.
4 Weapon Retexture Project
Weapons play a significant role in Fallout: New Vegas. The player will spend much of their time looking at these weapons, so it’s important to give their looks an upgrade as well. The Weapon Retexture Project, or WRP, contains a comprehensive package for improving the visuals of various firearms.
Fallout New Vegas: 8 Best Companion Mods You Need To Install
Players shouldn’t have to wander the Mojave Wasteland alone. Luckily, there are some mods that introduce amazing companions to the game.
Details on the myriad of pistols, rifles, shotguns, and machine guns pop with this mod installed. The guns look like they were made from real metal. The words printed on certain firearms can be seen. Hundreds of little visual improvements make this mod essential.
3 Essential Visual Enhancements
Essential Visual Enhancements, or EVE, focuses its attention on the effects generated by weapons. The mod adds some impressive visual flair to combat encounters. Mowing down a small gang of raiders never looked or felt so good!
Among the mod’s features are new meshes for various energy weapons, custom HD impacts, static mesh animations, new explosions, and even new character reactions. It all serves to make combat more visceral, which makes sense considering the game’s violent and dangerous setting.
2 Fallout Character Overhaul
For old games, the look of the NPCs often serves as the starkest example of the product’s diminished visual quality. The characters in Fallout: New Vegas look horrendous, very much akin to something one would find in The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion.
Fallout Character Overhaul is outstanding in the level of detail it brings to the NPCs. “Lifelike” is the operative word to use when describing what this mod offers. It’s recommended to pair FCO with Immersive Mouth and Teeth and Natural Eyes to get the best result.