There are several NPCs that can potentially become companions in Weird West. Some will even come to your aid just in the nick of time. Here’s our Weird West guide to help you recruit generic mercenary companions and find friends for life.
Note: For more information, check out our Weird West guides and features hub.
Weird West guide – How to recruit mercenary companions and friends for life
In a way, Weird West does have several categories for the NPCs that you can encounter:
- Unique companions and former main characters – We won’t discuss these here, but we do have a unique companions guide and a previous main character recruitment guide.
- Generic companions – They will join you as part of an optional task or because of your reputation.
- Hireable mercenaries – They’re found in saloons, often costing around $100 to recruit.
- Friends for life (FFL) – Several actions can lead to this, which we’ll talk about in a while.
Note: Your party or posse in Weird West is limited to three characters (i.e., your main hero plus two companions).
Generic companions versus mercenaries
We can see good examples of generic companions and mercenaries early on in Weird West‘s campaign. After you finish your first main objective as the Bounty Hunter, you’ll return to the town of Grackle. There, a notification tells you that you can get a deputy to join your posse or party for free. Do note that the names might be different due to procedural generation, but I got a fella named Monte Clasp.
Then, as you head to the saloon, an NPC yells out that they’re willing to join your squad as well. This one is a mercenary, and you’d need to pay cash for their services.
Here are some key differences that I’ve noticed:
- Obviously, a generic companion/deputy will join for free. There will be other examples later on, and they’d usually ask to join as part of the story or once your reputation is high enough.
- Not only will mercs need to be paid upfront, but there’s a chance that they’d leave after you’re done with a mission. They sometimes have lower HP, too.
Note 1: Once a companion/merc has been recruited, you can talk to them to see their inventory via a dialogue option. You may give them a different weapon or armor/vest, and you can assign the weapon that they’ll equip if they have multiple types in their inventory. Likewise, you can use them as mules for the stuff that you don’t want to carry around.
Note 2: As you continue to progress, take a look at the locations on the world map. When you mouse over certain locations, you’ll see the portraits of recruitable NPCs.
Friends for life
As for NPCs who’ll become friends for life in Weird West, there are certain requirements that you need to fulfill:
- Some NPCs will give you a sidequest (i.e., find Item X or rescue Person Y). Completing this might make them a friend for life.
- In some cases, there will be a dungeon or random encounter where an NPC is imprisoned. Freeing them can cause them to be grateful.
- An early-game example is the Stillwater bandit in Greenwood Run. He’s injured and he’ll ask you for a bandage. If you give him one, he’ll become an FFL.
- Companions that have journeyed with you for a time prior to being dismissed can also become FFLs.
A friend for life in Weird West acts as a temporary companion and only under a specific circumstance: you’re in combat and your HP is low.
When this occurs, a script is triggered that will cause a random FFL to spawn during the fight. They’ll attack your opponents before leaving. But, if they die, you can just loot their corpse.