The Vault - Fallout Wiki

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The Vault - Fallout Wiki
This page lists all skills in Fallout 3.
  • The content is not described in full detail on this page. For details, please see the respective articles.
  • For skills in other Fallout games, please see "Skill".
  • For an overview of Fallout 3 content, please refer to "Portal:Fallout 3".


As in the previous games, the player chooses three Tag Skills out of thirteen to be the character's specialties.

Unlike previous games, tagging a skill only grants the player a 15 point bonus to that skill, after which it increases normally.

Six skills have been modified in comparison with Fallout and Fallout 2:


The initial value of each skill is based on a character's value in the relevant attribute plus a bonus determined by their Luck attribute, rounded up.

Example: A starting Endurance of 5 and a starting Luck of 5 will give you an initial Unarmed skill of 15.

Initial values also function as base value, meaning any later change to the SPECIAL stat would also have similar change to the respective skill.

At level up, the character will distribute 10 (13 with the perk Educated) skill points plus a number equal to their Intelligence. With a IN of 10, you can distribute up to 23 skill points when leveling up.

List of skills

Skill Description Associated stat Associated skillbook Initial value
Barter Proficiency at trading and haggling Charisma Tales of a Junktown Jerky Vendor (CH * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Big Guns Proficiency at using "unorthodox weaponry" Endurance U.S. Army: 30 Handy Flamethrower Recipes (EN * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Energy Weapons Proficiency at using energy-based weapons Perception Nikola Tesla and You (PE * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Explosives Proficiency at using explosive weaponry Perception Duck and Cover! (PE * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Lockpick Proficiency at picking locks Perception Tumblers Today (PE * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Medicine Proficiency at using medical tools and drugs Intelligence D.C. Journal of Internal Medicine (IN * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Melee Weapons Proficiency at using melee weapons Strength Grognak the Barbarian (ST * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Repair Proficiency at repairing items Intelligence Dean's Electronics (IN * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Science Proficiency at hacking terminals Intelligence Big Book of Science (IN * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Small Guns Proficiency at using conventional firearms Agility Guns and Bullets (AG * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Sneak Proficiency at remaining undetected and stealing Agility Chinese Army: Special Ops Training Manual (AG * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Speech Proficiency at persuading others Charisma Lying, Congressional Style, Paradise Lost (CH * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)
Unarmed Proficiency at unarmed fighting Endurance Pugilism Illustrated (EN * 2) + 2 + (LK / 2)

Improving skills


  • By wearing certain armor and clothing that offer skill modifiers.
  • By using chems that alter their base stats, thus increasing the related skills.
  • Carrying the Lucky 8 Ball from Timebomb. The Luck increase raises all skills slightly, but is lost if the item is removed from inventory.



It is possible to never have to put points into certain skills to max them out. In particular, certain skill books are on respawning non-player characters - merely waiting 73 hours after killing will result in a new copy being created.