Skill Basics

Skills represent some of the more mundane abilities your character possesses. As your character advances in level, you can gain new skills and your existing skills improve.

Table 5–1: Skill Points

Class Skill Points
Barbarian 4 + Int modifier
Bard 6 + Int modifier
lCleric 2 + Int modifier
Druid 4 + Int modifier
Fighter 2 + Int modifier
Monk 4 + Int modifier
Paladin 2 + Int modifier
Ranger 6 + Int modifier
Rogue 8 + Int modifier
Sorcerer 2 + Int modifier
Wizard 2 + Int modifier

Acquiring Skills

At first level, your character gains a number of skill points dependent upon your class plus your Intelligence modifier. At every level after that, you gain additional skill points. These skill points can be spent to purchase ranks of any skill, but you can only acquire a number of ranks in a specific skill equal to your total Hit Dice. In addition, each class has a number of favored skills, called class skills. Your character is most proficient in these skills, as they represent part of his professional training and constant practice. You gain a +3 bonus on all class skills that you put ranks into. If you have more than one class and both grant you a class skill bonus, these bonuses do not stack.

The number of skill ranks you gain when taking a level in one of the base classes is shown on table 5–1. Humans gain one additional skill point per class level. Character’s who take levels in their favored class can also chose to gain 1 additional skill point. At each level after 1st, you gain a number of skill ranks dependant upon your class. If you select a level in a new class, all of its class skills are automatically added to your list of class skills, and you gain a +3 bonus on these skills if you have ranks in them.

Table 5–2: Skill Check Bonuses

Skill Skill Check is Equal To1
Untrained 1d20 + Ability modifier + racial modifier
Trained 1d20 + Skill ranks + ability modifier + racial modifier
Trained Class Skill 1d20 + Skill ranks + ability modifier + racial modifier + 3
1 Armor check penalty applies to all Strength and Dexterity-based skill checks.

Skill Checks

Whenever your character is required to make a skill check, roll 1d20 and add the appropriate modifier. If the skill is one that you have put ranks into, you are considered trained. Each rank you place in a skill gives you a +1 bonus on checks made using that skill. When making a skill check, add your ranks and the appropriate ability score modifier to a 1d20 check. If the skill is a class skill and you have invested ranks into that skill, you also add +3 to the check. If you are not trained in the skill (and it may be tried untrained) you may attempt the skill using only the bonus (or penalty) provided by the associated ability score modifier. Any racial modifiers apply to all of these rolls. These values are summarized on Table 5–2.

Table 5–3: Altered Skills

Old Skill New Skill Old Skill New Skill
Balance Acrobatics Move Silently Stealth
Concentration Spellcraft Open Lock Disable Device
Decipher Script Linguistics Search Perception
Forgery Linguistics Speak Languages Linguistics
Gather Information Diplomacy Spot Perception
Hide Stealth Tumble Acrobatics
Jump Acrobatics Use Rope
Listen Perception

Skill Summary

The following skill descriptions are either entirely new or altered from recent editions. For a complete summary of all of the skills, see Table 5–4. Some previous skills have been combined into one unified skill. For a summary of these changes, see Table 5–3.

Table 5–4: New Skills

Skill Bbn Brd Clr Drd Ftr Mnk Pal Rgr Rog Sor Wiz Untrained Ability
Acrobatics C C C C Yes Dex1
Appraise C C C C C Yes Int
Bluff C C C Yes Cha
Climb C C C C C C C Yes Str1
Craft C C C C C C C C C C C Yes Int
Diplomacy C C C C Yes Cha
Disable Device C No Dex1
Disguise C C Yes Cha
Escape Artist C C C Yes Dex1
Fly C C C No Dex1
Handle Animal C C C C C No Cha
Heal C C C C Yes Wis
Intimidate C C C C C C Yes Cha
Knowledge (arcana) C C C C No Int
Knowledge (dungeoneering) C C C C C No Int
Knowledge (engineering) C C C No Int
Knowledge (geography) C C C C No Int
Knowledge (history) C C C C No Int
Knowledge (local) C C C No Int
Knowledge (nature) C C C C C No Int
Knowledge (nobility) C C C C No Int
Knowledge (planes) C C C No Int
Knowledge (religion) C C C C No Int
Linguistics C C C C No Int
Perception C C C C C C Yes Wis
Perform C C C Yes Cha
Profession C C C C C C C C C C No Wis
Ride C C C C C C Yes Dex1
Sense Motive C C C C C Yes Wis
Sleight of Hand C C No Dex1
Spellcraft C C C C C C C Yes Int
Stealth C C C C Yes Dex1
Survival C C C C Yes Wis
Swim C C C C C C Yes Str1
Use Magic Device C C C No Cha
C = Class Skill; 1Armor check penalty applies