A classic bolt-action rifle design dating back to the 20th century. Its rugged design, performance against a variety of game, and accuracy made it a staple of American hunting before the Great War. The nuclear holocaust has merely changed the type of animal hunted by the owner of the rifle. The availability of replacement units often cause owners to neglect their rifles, though their performance even while damaged and far between repairs is a testament to the quality of this all American design. While the basic model was chambered for the venerable .308 round, hunters in the Capital Wasteland area are known to use a model chambered for .32 caliber rounds meant for pistols.
This weapon is often the very first rifle type firearm the Lone Wanderer can acquire after leaving Vault 101 for the first time. (Although the BB gun is the first rifle to be acquired, the .32 hunting rifle is among the first actual combat rifles able to be acquired.) This weapon is very accurate, and has the best zoom of the non-scoped weapons. The standard hunting rifle has spread, unlike the sniper rifle (and the hunting rifle's unique variant Ol' Painless). This can make the weapon hard to use for sniping at long ranges without V.A.T.S. A skilled player can use this weapon to great effect in most situations, even close quarters combat inside buildings. As always, it is best to take cover between shots.
Unlike most guns in the game, this rifle is not self-loading (automatic); rather, it is a bolt-action weapon. This gun is best used at a safe range or on relatively weak non-player characters.
It is coming apart and held together with duct tape and wire (while other weapons in the game are either rusted or scratched). Despite its appearance, a fully repaired hunting rifle can fire 666 shots, about 134 magazines, before breaking.
It is interesting to note that while this is a very accurately depicted weapon, the in-game weapon model does not have rear or front sights, nor does it have a scope. In reality, this would make the weapon extremely difficult to aim at longer ranges and would render it almost totally worthless beyond close-range encounters, even to a skilled marksman.
Ol' Painless, a slightly stronger hunting rifle that has a hastened reload time, (both for replacing the magazine and cycling the bolt). It addition has no spread but is less durable.
Lucas Simms' house has a damaged rifle sitting on a shelf in a room upstairs. The door requires a Lockpick skill of 50, you can pickpocket the house key from Lucas Simms, or you can use an empty, upturned metal barrel (carried to and placed near the Water processing plant railing) to jump onto Lucas Simms' roof and enter his house via the roof hatch (which is never locked) to his lookout point.
Just west of Vault 101 is an old barn with a random encounter spawn point located inside. Going up the stairs in the barn will reveal a hunting rifle and .32 ammunition next to a skeleton and a Ham Radio.
There is a damaged rifle behind Springvale School among a pile of nuclear waste barrels (in a fenced-in area with a locked gate).
In one of the abandoned houses in Grayditch there is a hunting rifle leaning neatly against a shelf.