How to learn and level skills in Project Zomboid

How to learn and level skills in Project Zomboid

Skills are a big part of surviving and thriving out in the real world. You need to learn marketable skills to get a job. And when the crap starts hitting the fan, you’re going to want to know how to survive out on your own. With all that’s going on in the world, it’s a good idea to be prepared. Project Zomboid is a game that makes this otherwise grueling process much easier, and even fun.

Here’s how it all works. You gain levels in each skill class based on your activity. Usually, this means that you’re going to need to find skill books for each of the skills listed on the skills page. You can also pick perks during character creation that affect your starting point allocations. But excepting that, you need to play the game to level skills in Project Zomboid.

In Project Zomboid, you need to learn skills when you want to be able to do pretty much everything. The different levels in each skill—the stats for which can be seen in the character screen, you can open this by selecting the ‘skills’ tab or by pressing L—will have an impact on what items you can use and make.

How to learn and level skills in Project Zomboid

When you want to level up the skills faster, and learn new ones, there’s a very convenient way to level skills in Project Zomboid. The system always begins at rank 0, unless you have a preassigned perk that affects that stat. When you want to increase skills, you will want to have the requisite skill book on hand. You can slowly gain new skills by practicing them, but there’s  faster way.

Skill books can be used to increase the rate at which the player trains a given skill. These can be found throughout the world on bookshelves or in other containers. Books are only available for skills in the “crafting” and “survivalist” categories. Normally, you gain skills by doing. So if you want to increase Foraging, you would go out and loot the wilds to level it up. Using a Skill book can speed up that process at some ranks.

You can find books in any house with a bookshelf, although the chance is random. Also, higher-end books seem to be much rarer. The best thing to do would be to try and brave the zombie-ridden city to find a bookstore. This is incredibly dangerous, and is best attempted when heavily armed and prepared for an all-out war with the undead.

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When trying to figure out what to level, it’s best to know what each skill affects. Agility affects how you are at avoiding making noise, as well as how easy it is for you to climb and avoid obstacles. Combat reflects all the abilities you have with various weapon classes. Firearms is like a sub-class of skills that also deals with accuracy when firing, as well as unlocking weapon ammo crafting. Crafting is all the main crafting skills in one place. Various recipes will require different levels in each class. Survivalist reflects your loot chances from various activities out in the wilds. There are also Passive skills that reflect your ability to carry weight and take damage.

Here are the basic breakdowns of how skills level in each rank:

  • Skill 1-2 requires a Beginner’s book
  • Skill 3-4 requires an Intermediary book
  • Skills 5-6 requires an Advanced book
  • Skill 7-8 require an Expert book
  • Skill 9-10 requires a Master book

Reading a book takes time and there is a level of risk involved. Before reading a book in Project Zomboid do the following:

  1. Always choose a secure place to read. Don’t try to read outside of a safehouse or other locked up area.
  2. Pick the correct book for the skill level you are at, otherwise it won’t have any effect and you will waste valuable time.
  3. Make sure hunger and thirst are taken care of, as it can take a whole day to advance at the higher tiers.
  4. Always try to time reading skills books in the early morning to prevent falling asleep and leaving yourself vulnerable.
  5. Make use of the fast-forward function to speed up time.

Finishing up a book will increase XP gain for that skill for the next two levels. This will speed up the gain from the relevant activity.

Once you have read a book in Project Zomboid, you will receive a boosted experience gain for 2 levels. Now, when you carry out the relevant activity that your level will increase quicker than it would have if you didn’t read any books.

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