THE RAILROAD QUEST 01 - Road To Freedom
Triggered by multiple sources: overhearing conversations in Diamond City or Goodneighbour, Speaking to Doctor Amari during Story Mission 10 - The Molecular Level or by looking around Park Street Station.
Objective: Follow the freedom trail
The freedom trail begins at Boston Commons, where a protectron is standing/ charging up next to an old fountain. When you approach the protectron will activate and talk to you about the freedom trail. You can talk to it for a clue or two, but the main point is you need to follow the line of red bricks on the ground (occasionally replaced by red paint). While this sounds easy, you'll need to wind your way through several dangerous areas with raiders, super mutants and ghouls along the way. So prepare yourself for a fight.
Note: You can just travel to the final destination of the trail, the Old North Church to bypass the whole business.
Objective: Continue following the freedom trail
You'll pass burial grounds, historic locations and enemy camps along the way. If you're trying to work out the clues for the railroad, pay special attention to the underlined letters on the circular plaques in front of each location. The numbers specify the position of the letter in a codeword used by the organization. For those that want to work out the passcode for themselves, feel free to skip the paragraph below.
The combination of letters and numbers you'll find in order along the way are: A-7, L-4, A-2, O-6, I-3, R-5, D-8, R-1. When written out in order, these create the word RAILROAD. Pretty obvious all things considered, really.
When you reach the Old North Church at the end of your journey you'll see it has a lantern beside the door (the lantern was mentioned on the message at the fountain where the trail started). Open the door and head inside. There are around three ghouls scattered about inside the main level of the church. Before you look for the headquarters, you can pass through the door at the back of the church leading to the steeple to find a decent sniper rifle just laying on the stairs inside. To find the entrance to the tunnels leading to the Railroad's headquarters, you'll need to go down the stairs in the main church area and work your way through the passages below, picking off the ghouls as you run across them.
At the end of the tunnel you'll come across a strange device on the wall. A large metal disc connected to some wires. This is where the passcode you discovered will come in handy. You need to spin the disc (by aiming your cursor at the outer ring until it stops on the letters of the passcode. After each one, aim at the circle in the center to input the letter. When the eighth letter is entered correctly, a hidden door to the left will open and you'll be on the threshold of the Railroad headquarters. Enter the tunnel and you'll be face to face with members of the Railroad.
You'll have a conversation with Desdemona here, the leader of the Railroad. There are a few hard persuasion options here if you have the stats for some extra XP and information. If you agree to join the Railroad here, you'll be admitted to the faction as a 'tourist.' Not a full member but at least it's a start. With that, the quest will be over and Deacon will be ready with your next Railroad quest when you are ready.