Promotional art for the plasma cutter in Fallout 76.
Image via Bethesda

Fallout 76 Plasma Cutter Guide: How to Get and Best Build

Here's a Fallout 76 Plasma Cutter Guide on how to get it and the best build to use it effectively.

The Plasma Cutter is the best melee weapon in Fallout 76 due to its swing speed, elemental effects, mods, and overall Perk synergy. However, knowing how to unlock and use it effectively can be tricky. Here’s a Fallout 76 Plasma Cutter guide discussing how to get it and the best build for it.

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How to get the Plasma Cutter in Fallout 76

Minera's Big sale in Fallout 76
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There are currently two different ways to get the Plasma Cutter in Fallout 76: obtain the plan to craft it yourself or receive one as a reward. We’ll go over both ways in greater detail below so you can make the best choice based on where you are in the game.

You can get the Plasma Cutter plan in Fallout 76 in the following ways:

  • Daily Ops: Level 50 and higher players have a 5% chance of earning the plan for the Plasma Cutter when finishing Daily Ops with the Initiate, Paladin, and Elder tiers.
  • Minerva: You can purchase the Plasma Cutter plan from Minerva during her List 13 sale at Foundation or List 16 sale at The Whitespring Resort for 2667 gold bullion.

You need the following materials to craft a level 50 Plasma Cutter in Fallout 76:

  • Aluminum x8
  • Black Titanium x10
  • Circuitry x8
  • Rubber x14
  • Steel x15
Speaking to Purveyor Murmrgh in Fallout 76
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You can earn a single Plasma Cutter in Fallout 76 through the following methods:

  • The Best Defense quest: You will earn a Plasma Cutter for finishing The Best Defense, the last quest of act one for the Brotherhood of Steel quest chain. Bethesda added this quest chain to Fallout 76 during the Steel Dawn update.
  • Public Events: Once you obtain the Plasma Cutter plan, you can earn legendary variants from Public Events.
  • Purveyor Murmrgh: Once you obtain the Plasma Cutter plan, Purveyor Murmrgh at The Rusty Pick will add a legendary variant to her stock of melee weapons.

The Best Plasma Cutter Build in Fallout 76

The below Plasma Cutter build is the best full-health build that utilizes the one-star Legendary Effect, Aristocrats, to buff your overall damage based on your total Caps Stash. This build will let you one-hit enemies with a power attack while having the ability to heal your teammates and NPCs due to the Flaming Blade mod.

An important note is that you’ll have one unmovable point in Perception and Intelligence plus six additional points to customize the below build to fit your play style. Here is the best Plasma Cutter build in Fallout 76:

  • Perks:
    • Strength:
      • These perks will increase the damage you do with one-handed melee weapons. Since you’ll receive a considerable boost to melee damage from your Strength stat, you can also rank down your damage perks in favor of the Blocker perk instead if you feel like you need survivability.
        • Gladiator – Rank 3
        • Expert Gladiator – Rank 3
        • Incisor – Rank 3
        • Martial Artist – Rank 3
        • Master Gladiator – Rank 3
    • Perception:
      • Your Choice
    • Endurance:
      • Fireproof helps counteract explosive damage from Collateral Damage, because it will damage you, too.
        • Lifegiver – Rank 4
        • Fireproof – Rank 3
    • Charisma:
      • The Friendly Fire perk allows you to heal your teammates and NPCs with fire damage provided by the Flaming Blade mod.
        • Lone Wanderer – Rank 4
        • Friendly Fire – Rank 3
        • Tenderizer – Rank 3
    • Intelligence:
      • Your Choice
    • Agility:
      • Action Boy/Girl helps you maintain your AP at all times, which is necessary since power attacks require AP to perform.
        • Action Girl – Rank 3
        • Adrenaline – Rank 5
    • Luck
      • Class Act and Starched Genes help you maintain any mutations you obtain. An important mutation for this build is Twisted Muscles, which gives you an additional +25% melee damage and more chance to cripple limbs.
        • Bloody Mess – Rank 3
        • Class Act – Rank 3
        • Starched Genes – Rank 2
  • Legendary Perks:
    • Collateral Damage
    • Hack and Slash
  • Legendary Effects:
    • One Star – Aristocrats (Increases damage for every 1000 caps up to 50%)
    • Two Star – Melee Speed (Increase swing speed by 40%)
    • Three Star – Strength (+1 Strength)
  • Mods:
    • Flaming Blade

For armor, I’m using T-51b Power Armor with the Optimized Bracers mod for the arm slots, which reduces the AP cost of Power Attacks, and the Motion-Assist Servos mod for the torso, which increases Strength. In addition, I’m also running the Electric Absorption Legendary Perk, which causes energy damage to heal health and recharge fusion cores.

Now that you have used our Fallout 76 Plasma Cutter guide, know how to get one and the best build to use it with, slaying any enemy you come across in Appalachia with ease. Check out our Fallout 76 guide hub for more guides like How to Solve the Pioneer Treasure Hunt, a fun adventure in Skyline Valley.

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Matthew Kevin Mitchell
Matthew Kevin Mitchell is a freelance writer for GameSkinny and has written in the game journalism industry for over two years. In his previous roles, Matthew primarily covered Manga, like One Piece, horror movies like Scream, and asymmetrical horror games like Dead by Daylight. His favorite moment came during his first press event covering Scream 6. He hails from Denver, Colorado, where he received his Bachelor of Science in Information Technology from Regis University. When he isn’t scaring himself silly or writing, he loves to play goalie in rec ice hockey, spoil his dog Nux, and drink an unhealthy amount of coffee.