Fallout Shelter was a surprise announcement during Bethesda’s E3 2015 press conference, an exciting addition to the Fallout universe that’s shot all the way to the top of the App Store. It places you in charge of your very own Vault (with your own number and everything!) as an Overseer welcoming those coming in from the Wasteland and even starting new life within.

Whether you’re coming in from the irradiated wastes or have been Overseeing communities for years, our tips and tricks guide will ensure you create a thriving and bustling underground dwelling in no time. And if you need to delve a little deeper, be sure to check out the following supplementary guides that give a deeper look at every topic:

Know The Basics

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  • If you want to make any sort of meaningful progress, you’re going to want to make sure you familiarize yourself with the three resources in-game that make your underground world go ’round: Energy, Food, and Water. Energy is obviously a given since it’s required to keep the lights on and electricity flowing through the Vault, and Water and Food will ensure your Dwellers won’t starve to death or get irradiated.
  • Starting out, make sure you’ve got a room to cover every resource available, because you’ll need a steady store of each one. You also have to populate each room with a Dweller to ensure the work gets done to pump out each of these resources. The more Dwellers you add, the faster the resources will be created.

Keeping Your Vault Running

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  • Aside from worrying about the resources you need to run your Vault, you need to also make sure you’re doing enough to keep everyone happy, fed, and working. You can also have babies if certain conditions are met, and this is definitely something you’ll want to keep in mind as fewer and fewer Dwellers show up at your doorstep.
  • If you’re feeling especially morally dubious, equip one of your male citizens with charisma enhancing items, place him in a living quarters, and send your females in there one after another. This will give you a constant string of pregnancies to keep your vault growing.
  • When you build new rooms and facilities, try and keep what you can of a system going. Keep your facilities close to others and keep dining areas close as well. This will help you keep track of what’s going on visually. You’ll also have a better idea of what you’ve already built and what you need to make next. Not only that, but if you build two similar room types right beside each other, you can merge them together.
  • In Fallout Shelter you’ll need to keep an eye on each Dweller’s SPECIAL stats: Strength, Perception, Endurance, Charisma, Intelligence, Agility, and Luck. If a Dweller is overflowing with strength, have them take over the Power Generators, and so on. Keep this in mind when assigning people to work in certain rooms.
  • You have the option to rush production on these resources, but that’s not a great idea. Rushing to get things completed more than often results in disastrous complications, so take your time and go slow. It’s not a race. As long as you’re continually producing resources, you’ll be fine. Keep in mind that if you do decide to rush production, make sure you only do so on rooms with a low percentage of an incident. You can see the percentage rate when you try and rush production. It’ll net you extra bottle caps if you can pull it off, but it’s hardly ever worth the extra trouble to do so unless you’re at critical levels of resources.

Going Out Into the Wasteland

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  • It’s imperative to go out into the world and see what’s out there on offer, so don’t be afraid to send out your strongest Dwellers out there to earn XP, bring back bottle caps for cash, or whatever salvageable items you can find. All you need to do to send someone out exploring is drag them out into the world in front of the vault, and they’ll be on their way.
  • You can see what your Dweller is up to by tapping the button on the top left of the screen and then tapping on their icon. This is helpful so you can get a sense of what the little guy or girl has already found and pull them back to safety if things are getting to rough. You won’t get your loot if you don’t do this, so make sure you call them back from time to time.
  • Never send a Dweller out into the wasteland without the proper equipment! You’ll find that they’ll meet a swifter death if you do this too often, and you’ll have to spend valuable caps to revive them.

There you have it. These tips should give you a jump on Fallout Shelter and the unique challenges within. You can find more tips on how to earn more caps, get more dwellers, improve your SPECIALs, as well as why your citizen’s health is in the red so much in our supplementary guides. Now go forth and create an admirable Vault that they’ll be writing about in the Fallout history books!