The minimum for each primary statistic is 1 and the maximum is 10. These boundaries can never be broken, even with bonuses or maluses. Each statistic directly modifies certain derived statistics. In addition, every skill is tied to a primary statistic. Some perks require certain minimum attribute values as well.

You get 40 points to distribute among the 7 statistics when creating a character (not taking traits into account).


Primary statistic Description Derived statistics and effects Associated skills
Strength Raw physical strength. Carry Weight
Hit Points
Melee Damage
Thrown weapons range modifier
Melee Weapons, Unarmed
Perception The ability to see, hear and taste and notice unusual things. Dialogue options
Distance from enemies in random encounters
Ranged combat distance modifiers
Doctor, First Aid, Lockpick, Traps
Endurance Stamina and physical toughness. Healing Rate
Hit Points
Poison Resistance
Radiation Resistance
Charisma A combination of appearance and charm. NPC reactions
Party limit
Barter, Speech
Intelligence Knowledge, wisdom and the ability to think quickly. Dialogue options
skill points per level
Doctor, First Aid, Outdoorsman, Repair, Science
Agility Coordination and the ability to move well. Action Points
Armor Class
Big Guns, Energy Weapons, Lockpick, Melee Weapons, Small Guns, Sneak, Steal, Throwing, Traps, Unarmed
Luck Fate, Karma. Chances with the virtual dice of the game
Critical Chance

Increasing attributes

You can get a computer in the Brotherhood outpost in San Francisco to perform operations on you to raise Strength, Perception, Charisma and Intelligence by 1, provided you find the associated memory modules.

In addition, you can increase all S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stats by using the Gain (Statistic) perk.

Wearing Power Armor raises your Strength by 3 and Advanced Power Armor (normal and Mk II) raise by 4.