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Ghost Town Gunfight - Introduction
Note: You may want to do “I Fought the Law" first, if you want to support the NCR and retake the prison. Counter-intuitively, the only way to help the NCR seize the prison is to help out the Powder Gangers for a few missions (no bad karma ones, so don’t worry about messing up your character). If you do this mission to completion, then you will be vilified by the Powder Gangers and they will probably kill you (it’s possible, but incredibly difficult to get the quests without making them hostile). Just skip this one for now and come back to it after you take care of the Powder Gangers in the NCR Correctional Facility.
This is probably going to be the first quest that you get after the tutorial. You will have the chance to decide the fate of Goodsprings by taking on Joe Cobbs’ gang. Note that Ghost Town Gunfight only refers to the Goodsprings side of the battle and its unique preparation. Look for “Run Goodsprings Run" if you want to see the version where you help the Powder Gangers overrun the town.
You can get this mission by walking into the Goodsprings Saloon after meeting Sunny Smiles for her training. When you try to find Trudy at the bar, you’ll see her arguing with Joe Cobb. If you talk to her about it, she’ll explain that Joe has been trying to get them to turn over Ringo. She’ll point out that Ringo is hiding up in the old gas station (this will remove the lock on the door).
Walk up to the gas station and talk to Ringo. If you want to help out Goodsprings, then you can offer your help. Note that offering to help Ringo seals your path. Joe Cobb will turn down your help after you commit to helping the town.
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Ghost Town Gunfight - Preparations
Ringo wants you to get the town to support him, so get ready to do a little recruiting and form a militia. Start out by talking to Sunny Smiles. She’ll immediately agree to help and point out a few more people you should convince to join your little militia. You don’t have to recruit them, but it will make the shootout a whole lot easier.
Doc Mitchell is probably the easiest. If you’re helping Goodsprings, then you just have to ask him for some medical supplies. If you have some points in Medicine, then you may be able to convince him to give you some doctor’s bags too. It isn’t something that I’d worry about too much though. If you have the skills, go for it (and remember that he should have a Physicians Today magazine on an end table). Otherwise, just enjoy the stimpaks.
You can find Chet inside his store. With 25 points in Barter, you can convince him to provide weapons and armor to the whole town. Note that he actually sells a “Salesmen Weekly" so you can buy that for a 10+ boost to Barter to pass the check. You’ll get your own suit of leather armor out of it, so it’s basically an investment.
Easy Pete just needs to have confidence in your abilities with explosives. You need 25 points in explosives to convince him to dig up his dynamite stash. You might be able to find a copy of “Patriot Cooking" in a mailbox around town, but it’s not guaranteed. Don’t worry too much about Easy Pete’s help. He gives you five sticks of dynamite and technically helps arm the townspeople, but it doesn’t really change much of the battle.
If you really want to maximize your experience gain, talk to Victor and ask him to join the fight. He should agree. He won't show up to the actual battle though. If you talk to him afterwards and have a Science skill above 25, you should be able to verify a remote shutdown and earn some extra XP.
Trudy is the most important person that you need to convince. If you have 25 points in Sneak or 25 points in Speech, you can convince her to support the battle. She’ll personally join the fighting with her caravan shotgun and recruit a few more nameless NPCs for the militia.
Once you’ve rounded up support in town, you can talk to Ringo to give him the good news. Confirm that you’ve down all that you can to start the gunfight.
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Ghost Town Gunfight - Defending Goodsprings
Joe Cobb and six nameless Powder Gangers will attack the town. Run down to the Saloon and join the militia line by the crates. You should be able to fire at them with your pistol or your varmint rifle. If you got Chet’s supplies, then most of the militia will survive and you should be fine overall. Just remember to use VATS and keep firing at any rushers so that the line can focus on the Powder Gangers with guns.
Once the gang is dead, you’ll complete the quest and earn “Idolized" status with Goodsprings and “Vilified" status with the Powder Gangers. Talk to Ringo to get the first part of your reward. He’s telling the truth about giving you more later. When you find him at the Crimson Caravan outpost, he’ll pay you a bigger reward and thank you again.