Fallout Wiki
Fallout Wiki

Skill advancement

Each skill has its own skill level which is expressed as a percentage. Skill levels can be raised by spending skill points earned from gaining experience levels, or by reading specific books.

As a skill's level increases, raising the skill further costs more skill points per percentage point. If statically (taking temporary effects aside, such as those of chems), the skill is at 99% or less, raising it (by 1 or 2 percentage points --- see below) costs 1 skill point; if the skill is at some value between 100% and 124% (inclusive), raising it (by 1 or 2 percentage points) costs 2 skill points; the full table of costs is:

  • negative costs 1 skill point to raise
  • 0% to 99% costs 1 skill point to raise
  • 100% to 124% costs 2 skill points to raise
  • 125% to 149% costs 3 skill points to raise
  • 150% to 174% costs 4 skill points to raise
  • 175% to 199% costs 5 skill points to raise
  • 200% to 299% costs 6 skill points to raise

By spending skill points or reading books, a skill cannot be raised if its increased level would be above 300%. However, the level can exceed 300% temporarily, for example, as a result of using chems; and even statically, for example, as a result of choosing perks at the right time.

An act of raising a skill in exchange for the appropriate amount of skill points --- according to the above table --- increases the skill's level by 2 percentage points if the skill is tagged, and by 1 percentage point otherwise. The appropriate amount of skill points must be available for this. There are no partial percentage points at partial costs.

Notice that if a skill is tagged and is at 299%, then the skill cannot be raised, not even to 300%. Also notice that, for example, if a skill is tagged and is at 149%, then raising the skill to 151% costs 3 skill points.

Like perks, skill points can be left unspent and will remain, to be spent later. This could conceivably be useful in the event of a hurdle in the game of unknown type that would prevent further progress, e.g. a locked door. More than 99 skill points can be saved up, even though the counter fails to visually indicate whether more than 99 skill points are available.

Effect of stats on skills

SPECIAL stats modify skills with a considerable bonus. The game keeps track of this bonus throughout the game, in real time. Any changes to stats, (e.g. chem effects, aftereffects and addiction effects) during the game add to or subtract from this modifier.

Effect of difficulty settings on skills

  • Combat and tagged skills are unaffected by difficulty settings.
  • Active and passive skills are lowered by 10 (%) when the difficulty is changed from "normal" to "hard".
  • Active and passive skills are raised by 20 (%) when the difficulty is changed from "normal" to "easy".

List of skills

Combat skills

Skill Description Associated stat Associated skill book Initial value
Big Guns The operation and maintenance of really big guns - miniguns, rocket launchers, flamethrowers and such. Agility - 0%+(2xAG)
Energy Weapons The care and feeding of energy-based weapons. How to arm and operate weapons that use laser or plasma technology. Agility - 0%+(2xAG)
Melee Weapons Using non-ranged weapons in hand-to-hand, or melee combat - knives, sledgehammers, spears, clubs and so on. Strength - 20%+[2x(AG+ST)]
Small Guns The use, care and general knowledge of small firearms - pistols, SMGs and rifles. Agility Guns and Bullets 5%+(4xAG)
Throwing The skill of muscle-propelled ranged weapons, such as throwing knives, spears and grenades. Agility - 0%+(4xAG)
Unarmed A combination of martial arts, boxing and other hand-to-hand martial arts. Combat with your hands and feet. Agility
- 30%+[2x(AG+ST)]

Active skills

Skill Description Associated stat Associated skill book Initial value
Doctor The healing of major wounds and crippled limbs. Without this skill, it will take a much longer period of time to restore crippled limbs to use. Intelligence
- 0%+(PE+IN)
First Aid General healing skill. Used to heal small cuts, abrasions and other minor ills. Intelligence
First Aid Book 30%+[2x(PE+IN)]
Lockpick Chance to pick a lock. Agility
- 10%+(PE+AG)
Repair The practical application of the Science skill for fixing broken equipment, machinery and electronics. Intelligence Dean's Electronics 0%+(3xIN)
Science Covers a variety of high technology skills, such as computers, biology, physics and geology. Intelligence Big Book of Science 0%+(4xIN)
Sneak Quiet movement, and the ability to remain unnoticed. If successful, you will be much harder to locate. You cannot run and sneak at the same time. Agility - 0%+(3xAG)
Steal The ability to make the things of others your own. Can be used to steal from people or places. Agility - 0%+(3xAG)
Traps The finding and removal of traps. Also the setting of explosives for demolition purposes. Agility
Maddock's Tricks & Traps 10%+(PE+AG)

Passive skills

Skill Description Associated stat Associated skill book Initial value
Barter Trading and trade-related tasks. The ability to get better prices for items you sell, and lower prices for items you buy. Charisma - 0%+(4xCH)
Gambling The knowledge and practical skills related to wagering. The skill at cards, dice and other games. Luck - 0%+(5xLK)
Outdoorsman Practical knowledge of the outdoors, and the ability to live off the land. The knowledge of plants and animals. Endurance
Scout Handook 0%+[2x(EN+IN)]
Pilot The ability to operate and maintain all vehicles effectively. Agility
Zen & Art of Piloting 0%+[2x(PE+AG)]
Speech Cut content The ability to communicate in a practical and efficient manner. The skill of convincing others that your position is correct. The ability to lie and not get caught. Charisma - 5%+(5xCH)