- Survivors possess four basic skills: Cardio, Fighting, Shooting, and Wits (survivors with certain traits will possess additional skills). Skills levels are displayed as stars, from 1 to 7. A character's progress towards the next level is indicated by a small EXP bar below the skill. Skills are developed by directly using them (i.e killing zombies with melee weapon improves Fighting, while killing them with firearms improves Shooting).
- As skills improve, the character becomes more effective at fighting and exploring. For example, improving Cardio grants additional Stamina, improving Fighting grants more Vitality. Other benefits are less tangible. For example, a character with higher levels in Wits will be able to search quicker and more quietly.
- When a character reaches level 4 in a combat skill (Fighting or Shooting), they have the option to choose a single Weapon Specialization. After choosing that specialization (e.g. heavy weapons) characters will gain a new exp bar for that specialization. Specializing in and leveling up a weapon skill provides further benefit when that weapon is being used. At level 4 of Melee Weapon Specialization, a Special Attack can be chosen that further improves the effectiveness of that weapon. Firearms, on the other hand, do not have special attacks.
- As a character with Reflexes or Powerhouse skill improves these skills, they can choose one Utility Skill and one Defensive Skill for additional close combat moves.
- When a Basic Skill reaches maximum level (7), it unlocks one Special Technique (except Cardio, which unlocks two). Each character can choose a single Special Technique.
- See also: Weapon Specialization, Special Attack, Special Technique, Utility Skill, Defensive Skill for further information
Traits and SkillsEdit
- Certain character traits can affect skills (positive or negative). For example, the Two Left Feet trait lowers leveling speed of Fighting, thus making it difficult for characters with this trait to improve Fighting and Vitality. On the other hand, some traits can give starting bonuses or increase leveling speed of certain skills.
- Aside from the basic four (Cardio, Wits, Fighting, Shooting), all remaining skills are personal skills, which is not available for all characters.
In the FieldEdit
- Among personal skills, only 3 can be improved: Leadership, Powerhouse, Reflexes
- While Jurisprudence had no effect in story-line mode, it was changed to offer a slight bonus to Trust gain in Breakdown. Still, it cannot be improved.
- The second type of personal skill, Home Site Skills, improve the effectiveness of facilities in the player's home site. They cannot be improved and have no impact on combat or exploration. If one survivor has multiple home site skills, he or she will be able to work on both facilities at the same time. (Examples include Chemistry, Construction, Medicine, Cooking and Tattoo Artist.)
- The third type, Gag skills, have no effect on gameplay. (Examples include Arts and Crafts, Computer Skills, etc.)
- Blunt Weapon Specialization
- Edged Weapon Specialization
- Heavy Weapon Specialization
- Pistol Specialization
- Revolver Specialization
- Rifle Specialization
- Assault Weapon Specialization
- Shotgun Specialization
- Special Attack
- Special Technique
- Utility Skill
- Defensive Skill
|Basic Skills||Cardio • Wits • Fighting • Shooting|
|Personal Skills (Field)||Powerhouse • Reflexes • Leadership • Jurisprudence|
|Personal Skills (Facilities)||Chemistry • Construction • Cooking • Counseling • Fitness Guru • Horticulture • Medicine • Research • Tattoo Artist|
| Personal Skills |
|Arts and Crafts • Beer Pong • Computer Skills • Etiquette • Gossip • Hoarding • Literature • Modeling • Reality Show Trivia • Sales • Sexting • Soap Opera Trivia • Sports Trivia • Sudoku|
|Specialization Skills||Edged Weapon • Blunt Weapon • Heavy Weapon • Pistol • Revolver • Rifle • Assault Weapon • Shotgun • Special Attack • Special Technique • Utility Skill • Defensive Skill|