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The Stranger, also referred to as The Unplanned Variable and The Captain, is the player character and main protagonist of The Outer Worlds.


After passing the colonist entrance exam, the Stranger was one of the thousands of people selected to colonize Halcyon, with the promise of 10 years feeling like minutes and waking up in a perfect society designed to maximize productivity with guaranteed full employment with only a minor term of service. They embarked on the Hope, the second colony ship bound for the system, but a skip drive malfunction caused the ship to arrive at its destination many decades behind schedule. The Board chose to abandon the Hope and its colonists and had the ship parked in orbit over Typhon.

The Stranger was rescued by Phineas Welles on May 15, 2355. As a side effect of hibernation sickness, the Stranger has the ability to slow down time with Tactical Time Dilation.


The player can customize the Stranger's attributes, skills, aptitude, appearance, name, and summary.


During initial customization, the player can choose one of 15 aptitudes, which grant bonuses to attributes, weapon damage, etc:

  • "No Discernible Aptitude"
  • Service Technician, Beverage
  • Bureaucrat, Level 0
  • Cashier, Sub-Grade, Non-Supervisory
  • Construction, Electrician, Wire Spooler
  • Elevator Operations Specialist
  • Factory Worker, Conveyor Operator
  • Farmer, Dirt
  • Food Additive Tester
  • Janitor, Sanitation Class
  • Tossball Team Mascot
  • Medical Technician, Junior Grade
  • Safety Inspector
  • Scientist Assistant, Level 0, Class A
  • Sub Sous Chef


  • Irrespective of the Stranger's aptitude and skills before boarding the Hope they seem to be quite accustomed to using a weapon.
  • Phineas Welles mentions that The Hope was full of geniuses, engineers, and scientists; however, the aptitude selection implies that the Stranger was not one of those people, or at least not formally.
  • Their Pod Designation was #CB5-524.
  • The player at the start of the game wears the hibernation suit and helmet.