Fallout 4 created by Bethesda Game Studios.
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Prerequisites: Complete Raider Troubles and Oberland Station
Trigger: Speak to Preston Garvey
Reward: 382 XP

- In order to complete this quest you must first deal with the problems of Oberland Station. That said, I’m not absolutely positive that’s the only trigger here, as I’d completed other Minutemen quests as well. Let me know if anyone out there knows of other prerequisites.

- Once this quest is available, Preston will ask you if you want him to set up an assault squad to retake Independence, a Minutemen stronghold that has since been lost. He’ll bug you about this every time you speak to him until you say yes, though you’re not obligated to do it. (I found that I couldn’t put Preston back on my team until after I’d agreed, though, once I dismissed him. Be careful about this.) Preston will run off once you agree to the mission.

- The location of the mission, Fort Independence, is faaaaaar to the southeast of Sanctuary, and much closer to Diamond City than your usual digs. You’ll have to walk through some hairy neighbourhoods to get there, many of which are home to some rather mean Super Mutants. If you don’t want to attract too much attention, stick to side roads and stealth along. (Don’t be surprised if you get sidetracked a hundred times before you get to your destination. Just saying.)

- The last stretch is particularly bad, as the area where the Castle is located (or just before it, anyway) is a bay dominated by Raiders and Super Mutants. Stick to the lower half of the bay, and hug the southern shoreline for the fewest problems. This neighbourhood is populated by Mongrels and Mirelurks, which, while problematic, are easier to kill than Raiders for most characters. 

- Your ultimate destination is a small, brick shop on the edge of the water. There are a bunch of items on the counter inside (the Fusion Cells are particularly appreciated, but all of this stuff is helpful), and several Minutemen sitting around. Speak to Preston to chat about Fort Independence. He’ll offer three options for the approach. We’ll look at all three below.

- It’s worth noting before you start that Preston will participate in this mission regardless of whether he’s a companion or not. Consequently, you should bring another companion along, as this won’t be a stealth fight, whether your character is built that way or not. Getting here with a companion is, that said, more difficult to do unscathed with a companion, so it’s your call.

Guns Blazing

In this approach you rush in and blast the inhabitants of Fort Independence - a mixture of Mirelurks, Softshell Mirelurks, and Mirelurk Hatchlings - with everything you’ve got. It’s a classic shootout / melee, and probably the dumbest choice, as you’re likely to lose your supporting Minutemen in the fray. Expect to do a lot of weaving and shooting until you wipe ‘em all out. I found shotguns to be very useful against Mirelurks in general, given how quickly they close the gap with their targets, but whatever attacks work best for you should take them out - so long as you aim at the head. Don’t aim for the shells, it’s useless. (Except with the Hatchlings. They’re very weak, regardless of where you hit ‘em.)

Pincer Attack

In this approach you’re going to split your forces in two. One will go through the front hole in the Castle; the other goes through a rear wall, on the right side, from the water. The Pincer Attack is a little more controlled in that you wind up splitting the Mirelurks in two, and there’s a better chance the other Minutemen will survive, but you’ll still face a lengthy fight. Perhaps the greatest advantage of this fight is the fact that the Hatchlings are less likely to pop out and bother throughout the fight, as the Minutemen don’t move around nearly as much, and, as such, don’t trigger spawns.

Draw Them Out

In this approach the Minutemen form a defensive line outside the Castle, and it’s your job to pull the Mirelurks out. Doing this will allow you to control the flow of the Mirelurks, at least to an extent, because you can sneak onto the walls and either snipe them or aggro them into moving towards the entrance. This puts more pressure on you to kill the things, but it also gives the unnamed Minutemen a greater chance of survival. You also won’t be exposed to the Hatchlings at all, or at least you won’t if you’re careful. Expect a longer, more dangerous battle for yourself, but one that doesn’t feel like an out-and-out brawl.

- Regardless of your approach, your next goal is to take out the remaining egg clutches. You can do this easily by swiping the eggs one by one, though you face the chance of Hatchlings bursting out to attack. They’re not a big deal, but you should still be cautious. Note that you need to destroy nests inside the walls, on the walls, and down in the middle of the Castle.

- Be ready once you finish off enough of the eggs. There’s more to do. One very big thing. You’ll know it’s coming when you hear a rumble.

The Mirelurk Queen in Fallout 4. Prepare to die. A lot.
Mirelurk Queen

Holy crap is that intimidating. The Mirelurk Queen appears through the seaside wall of the Castle after you’re spent enough time destroying eggs, and will lumber out of the water to assault your Minutemen. It attacks like a normal Mirelurk, constantly trying to close the distance with its targets for melee attacks, but its strikes are much more painful. Expect near-death levels if you get hit and your armour sucks. It also has an acid-spewing attack that can hit at a decent range, though it doesn’t quite match bullets. The effect this triggers will gradually eat away at your health. The Queen will also start spawning Hatchlings of her own accord if the battle wears on for too long, and they’ll follow you places the Queen can’t go, such as into the walls.

This fight is tough, no bones about it. Here are some tips for different strategies:
  • Start the battle by laying a bunch of Mines by the beach, so the Queen will walk into ‘em when it hits land. That done, start unloading on the beast from a distance, leading it around the walls - and into more batches of Mines. (If you have a companion, send them away. You don’t want them setting off your Mines.) With enough patience you can blow the Queen to hell without exposing yourself to damage.
  • If you prefer long-range tactics, stay on the walls, well out of the Queen’s spitting range, and aim for its torso. Whenever it starts getting close, hop off of the walls, keep away from Hatchlings that come for you, and wait for one of the NPCs to draw the Queen’s attention. Get back onto the walls and repeat. Be very careful on the walls - it’s entirely possible there are still Mirelurks up here that you didn’t disturb earlier, and they’ll burst up and attack you.
  • If you like close-range you might actually have the easiest time with this fight. The Queen is faster than she looks, but she’s not that great at turning. More, her legs are really vulnerable to damage, particularly from shotguns. Stay close to her, turn as she turns, and keep unloading on her legs. V.A.T.S. whenever you think you have an opening and want to land some criticals. The primary advantage of doing this is the fact that you remain completely out of range of the Queen’s acid, which will consistently fly over your head.
  • Use Power Armor. Seriously. It will help a lot, particularly with the bastard Hatchlings that follow you everywhere.
  • Check inside the Castle. In one of the larger rooms inside the walls you can find a Missile Launcher and two Missiles sitting on a table. These will really help blow the Queen to hell and back.

- Once you’ve killed the Queen, Preston will invite you to the radio transmitter in the middle of the Castle. (There’s a Guns and Bullets magazine here, too. Fancy.) You need to power this thing up, and that means using the Workshop to one side to create a source of power. Generator time! You’ll need ten power to do this, which means two Medium Generators (or one Large Generator, if you have Rank I of Science!). You can find some of the items needed for this in the Castle, but most of the stuff will have to come from elsewhere. Be careful wandering the Castle in search of resources, as there are still Mirelurks about (unless you were very thorough earlier.)

- Once you’ve got the Generators set up - and connected to the radio transmitter, which requires a connection first to the Power Conduit above the transmitter, and then down into the transmitter itself - speak to Preston to complete the quest. I highly recommend leaving the Castle now and going back, because this will immediately rid the place of the remaining Mirelurks, making your job much easier.

Setting up The Castle

The Castle, despite its obvious importance as a source of information, doesn’t require a ton of attention just yet. It’s full of amenities within the walls that make it fairly comfortable, and mainly requires a bit of light. You can provide it by extending Wires to the two Switched Power Pylons against the walls, which will illuminate the hallways quite nicely. You’ll also need some sources of water, which you can quickly get with simple Water Pumps. (There’s a more advanced one outside the walls; bring it up just by installing more Generators.) Beef your resources up as you draw in more people via the radio transmitter. This place will come under attack often if you don't.