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|For the faction, see Powder Gangers.|
The Powder Gangers were prisoners brought into Nevada by the NCR to rebuild the railroads. Housed in the New California Republic Correctional Facility, the prisoners were subjected to extremely harsh discipline leading the radical anti-NCR terrorist Samuel Cooke to plan a prison break. Having been supplied with dynamite for the purposes of breaking up rocks on the railroad, Cooke organised a small number of trusted fellow prisoners to sneak small portions of the explosive back into their cells, and eventually they used it to start a prison riot. The revolt was successful and the prisoners took over the facility, killing most of the former guards. The successful rioters took to calling themselves Powder Gangers in reference to the explosives they use as weapons.
Cooke eventually left the prison and headed north to plot further terror against the NCR, taking a sizeable entourage of loyal followers with him. Quite a large group, however, headed by Eddie stayed behind in the Correctional Faciity, realizing that the same walls that kept them inside could also keep out their enemies. Since then they have set up numerous camps in the area north of Primm and south of Sloan that shake down or kill unsuspecting passers-by walking along the I-15.
Ringo, a caravan trader from the Crimson Caravan company, once escaped an attack by Powder Gangers, killing three of their men in the process. He then beat a hasty retreat to Goodsprings to escape their overwhelming numbers. Trudy let him take shelter at an abandoned gas station in the town. The Ganger Joe Cobb followed him to Goodsprings but has not been successful in finding his hideout. While Ringo is not afraid to face the Powder Gangers again, he knows that he needs some support to ensure success. There are two options for the Courier to choose from: help the Powder Gangers take over Goodsprings or get the town together and fight off the invaders.
Killing a Powder Ganger at one of the camps or at most of the other locations is likely to garner the Courier some infamy with the faction unless it is performed quietly (or loudly but from extreme sneak attack ranges). The player should be careful of this course of action if they wish to side with Gangers against Goodsprings or to complete some of the Gangers' missions at NCRCF. The normal powder ganger is very weak considering their weapons are usually weak. The choice of tactics for these thugs are melee weapons at close combat while the riflemen usually stay a distance to shoot the player down.
Interactions with the player character
|This character is involved in quests.|
Prior to the most recent patch, Powder Gangers encountered at Powder Ganger Camps or at random in the Wasteland would initially be hostile towards the player, unless the Courier receives a positive reputation with the Powder Gangers. The Powder Gangers at their NCRCF headquarters would initially be neutral, as would Powder Gangers at certain other locations such as the traincars south of Sloan. Note that killing Powder Gangers, even those who attack unprovoked, will cause infamy with the faction unless done from sneak mode or at long range.
After the most recent patch, all Powder Gangers in the Mojave Wasteland will start out neutral towards the player at the beginning of the game, although they will turn hostile if the player garners negative reputation with the faction.
Powder Gangers are glorified raiders. Their defense is rather weak unless the Ganger in question is fortunate enough to be wearing the somewhat more uncommon Powder Gang guard armor which possesses a bulletproof vest and is superior to many early-game forms of armor (most notably the raider armor favored by Fiends). Their offense is similarly unremarkable, as most of them are armed with fairly low-level weapons. The noteworthy parts of combat with Powder Gangers are two-fold: 1) their extensive use of gunpowder weapons (such as dynamite and powder charges); and 2) their tendency to appear in sizable groups. The Powder Gangers are likely to be the first organized and armed group that the player encounters.
Powder Gangers are easily dealt with by most weapons, and are especially vulnerable to explosives and hollow-point rounds. Early-game players are advised to avoid using these rounds on ones with Guard Armor early on, however, as the damage reduction from the target's armor will often eclipse and outperform the damage bonus the ammunition type gives to early guns. Late-game weapons, however, can cheerfully ignore this drawback.
Gangers at Vault 19 and the NCR Correctional Facility are better equipped. Most of the personnel at these sites will have the aforementioned Guard Armor, and will be positioned better with better weapons. Expect guard-tower snipers armed with varmint rifles and the errant cowboy repeater or .308 hunting rifle. Grunts in these places are more-likely to carry guns like the .357 Magnum revolver, 9mm submachine gun, and 10mm submachine gun, while melee combatants are more likely to trade-up their knifes and tire iron for the likes of machetes and combat knives. Commanders and bodyguard units will be even better-armed, packing plasma pistols and Rippers.
|Powder Gang uniform or|
Powder Gang guard armor
hockey mask or
Trooper helmet or random Wasteland hat or Cowboy hat
|9mm pistol or|
.357 Magnum revolver or
varmint rifle or
single shotgun or
9mm submachine gun
Drops on death
- Vault 19
- It is occasionally possible for Powder Gangers to be invisible and friendly when approached, providing only a "Talk" option if you happen to get close enough to one of the unseen enemies. When spoken to they will instantly appear and begin attacking.
- Two hostile Powder Gangers can randomly spawn at the Lucky 38 presidential suite, however any companions waiting at the Lucky 38 will not engage combat with them.