Each character possesses a certain number of skills which allow for actions that cannot be simply described by class, level and race. Skills are rated as a score of 0 to 100. The score given can be assumed to be the average chance of success in percent when trying an average feat. This chance is lowered when trying something difficult and raised when trying something simple. There is always a chance for automatic success and automatic failure.
High skill scores are generally very helpful although they can be particularly effective with some specific skills. All skills below marked with a [+] will make ADOM behave in a special way if the score is greater than or equal to 80 or equal to 100. If the skill score is greater than or equal to 80, ADOM will internally always make two skill checks when one was requested by the circumstances and use the better result. If the skill score is equal to 100, ADOM will make three skill checks whenever requested to do so and will also use the best result.
Some skills need training material so that you can improve them. On the skill screen in the game, such skills are marked with (mr), if training material is still required (and thus currently no improvement is possible) or with (ma) if the required training material is available. Skills that need such material are marked with a [!] below.
Not all the skills listed below are immediately available to your character. Some are available to everyone by default, some skills are determined by your race and some by your class. If you receive a skill due to class and race, the skill score will be higher than normal. The following skills are available during the game (skills marked with a [*] are default skills available to everyone)
Skills can be marked so that you can select often used skills a lot faster. How to do this is described at the end of this section.
Alchemy allows you to brew magical potions. To use this skill, you need to collect the ingredients required to mix magical potions. It would also be useful to have the recipe for a potion at hand.
[+] This skill is used automatically. It helps to sense traps and invisible monsters although it is not too effective (which basically means that an active search for traps with the respective skill has a much higher chance of success). It can save your character from some nasty surprises at times. It's also *very* helpful when trying to dodge combat magic since high reflexes (as created by a high alertness skill) will help to dodge combat magic with lightning speed. Finally, a high skill value grants some minor DV bonuses, +1 at 75+, +2 at 90+ and +4 at 100.
[+] This skill allows the estimation of the value and power of unknown items. Items are rated on the following scale:
A score of poor and below should be considered to be a warning. Handle such items with great care!
This skill increases your proficiency with missile weapons. Archers receive a bonus of +1 to hit per 10 points in this score and a bonus of +1 to damage per 20 points in this score. All other classes receive a bonus of +1 to hit per 25 points in this skill and a bonus of +1 to damage per 40 points of skill score. This skill also slightly increases the range of your missile attacks on a successful skill check (which is done automatically whenever you use a missile).
This is a passive skill. It is used to raise your physical attributes by training your muscles and movement powers. Whenever you raise a level, this skill influences your chance to raise a physical attribute. Athletics works especially well for characters with low (< 10) to very low (< 5) physical attributes. The skill also slightly influences your looks.
Athletics also affect your speed score. At 70+ you gain +1 to speed, at 75 you gain +2 to speed, at 80 you gain +3 to speed, at 85 you gain +4 to speed, at 90 you gain +5 to speed, at 95 you gain +6 to speed and at 100 you gain +8 to speed.
[+] This skill increases your chance to hit and your chance to score a critical hit when you attack friendly or neutral monsters (or on hostile monsters if they don't notice you).
[!+] This skill allows you to build bridges.
[*+] This skill is used to climb out of pits and holes.
This skill influences the time required to regenerate lost magic points. A high skill value also makes it easier to learn new spells.
Scores of 75+ allow you to regain mana points a lot faster; the rate increases again at 90+ and 100.
[!+] Cooked food is more nutritious and less prone to rot away. Very effective if used on corpses. You need a cooking set to use this skill.
It is difficult to be a cold-blooded warrior when you are surrounded by dozens of enemies in a horrible fray. Usually, your PC will receive disadvantages in combat when surrounded and attacked by lots of opponents. Once a certain critical number of attackers is surpassed (two for fighters, paladins, rangers, monks, barbarians and beastfighters; one for all others), your combat abilities will deteriorate. Your character receives a -1 to hit per monster above the critical number, the monsters above the critical number receive a +2 to hit per such monster and your chances to hit with missiles are reduced by -4 per monster above the critical number ... unless you know this skill. It will allow you to remain calm and cold-headed in bloody situations and thus mass attacks by monster hordes might be less effective. It's a skill you need to learn somewhere *in* the game.
Detect Item StatusEdit
This skill is automatically used to determine the BUC (blessed-uncursed-cursed) status of items. This skill is comparable to the automatic ability of priests (in versions of ADOM older than 0.9.0) to discover the status of an item.
This skill must be explicitly used to discover hidden traps. It also helps to avoid known traps. The 'Search' command also activates this skill.
[+] This skill allows disarming previously discovered traps. Be careful... if you fail a check badly, you might spring the trap!
This skill increases your Defensive Value. The higher your dodge skill, the more points will be added to your DV (+1 for Dodge 1-30, +2 for Dodge 31-50, +3 for Dodge 51-65, +4 for Dodge 66-75, +5 for Dodge 76-83, +6 for Dodge 84-90, +7 for Dodge 91-95, +8 for Dodge 96-99 and +10 for Dodge 100). Dodging is also helpful in a minor way for evading combat magic cast on you (Alertness is more helpful since it trains the subconscious reflexes, which are more important since combat magic is so fast).
This skill increases your chance to score a critical hit when fighting monsters.
[*+] This skill allows handling bleeding wounds and even might allow you to recover some hit points... but only if those hit points were lost very recently.
[!+] With this skill, you can create new arrows and bolts. You need a fletchery set and some wood to use it.
This skill is automatically used. Certain types of food (mainly corpses) decompose over the time and finally vanish. Food preservation helps to prevent such food from decomposing. If given enough time, food will nonetheless decompose... this skill only helps to slow down the process. It also makes it more likely to find corpses of monsters you slay.
[+] This skill enables the character to plant herbs and harvest them later. This might come handy since some herbs have magical properties.
[+] This skill is used to identify gems and separate them from worthless pieces of glass.
[*] This skill allows the haggling down of prices for items. Charisma is also important, but a PC good at haggling probably will have few problems to make a bargain. Please note that although you might have bargained successfully at times, the price for individual items won't necessarily go down since ADOM drops all fractions and rounds prices.
Healing covers long-term treatment of wounds and diseases. Long-term treatment is used automatically. A high healing skill allows for a quicker hit point recovery. Additionally, the chances to survive wasting sicknesses are greatly increased by a high healing skill.
Herbalism covers both plant and herb lore. A character skilled in herbalism will be better able to recognize some of the strange plants that grow in the dungeons. Additionally, when collecting herbs, such a character will have a definite advantage over unskilled characters, because unskilled characters only will be able to find cursed herbs.
[+] Law allows you to notice (maybe) whenever you go beyond law and commit a chaotic act. It will also make known to you particularly lawful acts.
[*] This skill makes you notice sounds better. It is automatically checked whenever the need arises. If you want your character to be very perceptive, you should take care of your skill value in this skill.
[+] This skill governs your ability to read and write texts. If your learning score is at least 10 and you are neither a barbarian nor a beastfighter, you will receive this skill for free.
[+] This skill is automatically used. When you discover metal ingots, it allows for automatic identification (not always, but...). It is of great importance to weaponsmiths. It can also be actively used to determine the type of metal an item is made from (the item needs to be identified for this). The higher your skill score is, the more detailed the results will be.
[+] This skill determines your ability in digging tunnels. You'll need to use a pick axe to do that. The higher the skill is, the less time you need to dig a tunnel section.
[+] This skill controls your ability to play musical instruments. Some people contend that it is possible to tame wild animals if you are a very skilled musician.
This dark and forbidden art allows the user to create undead creatures which will serve him (or her). But there is a price to it... and don't forget to bring the necessary corpses for animation. Using this skill permanently drains your Mana attribute, although it is said that your Mana very slowly regenerates itself (but this really seems to be a tedious process).
It's also important to note that Necromancers using this skill are a lot more versatile than simple dabblers in necromantic affairs. Necromancers receive a wide variety of choices for the type of undead they wish to create (starting with level 18).
This skill allows the opening of locked doors, chests and hatches. To utilize it you need some kind of thieves picks. If a lock is trapped, the trap will probably be sprung unless you disarm the trap before picking the lock.
This skill enables you to steal small items from the pockets of certain monsters. Not every monster will carry treasures around, not every treasure will be accessible and finally you always risk making your victim very angry (at least if your victim notices your attempt).
Smithing allows the PC to repair damaged or destroyed metal items and to improve weapons and armor. It is hard to use because you need the necessary tools to practice it, the material to work with, and finally, you have to find a smithy.
[+] This skill prevents some monsters from noticing the player character. If you are very good at it you might be able to sneak past monsters or mount a surprise attack. The Stealth skill also is extremely helpful in ambushing monsters in the wilderness. In that special case it can be supplemented by the Survival skill.
[+] This skill allows the character to gather food while traveling through the wilderness. It can be very handy since more than one adventurer already starved in the wilderness. The Survival skill also is extremely helpful in ambushing monsters in the wilderness. In that special case it can be supplemented by the Stealth skill.
This skill enables you to traverse bodies of water. To fail an attempt to swim can be very deadly nonetheless.
This skill modifies the bonuses and penalties yielded by the 'T' command (see the command list) which influences the fighting techniques of a character. No character starts out with this skill -- you'll have to learn it somewhere.
Two weapon combatEdit
This skill increases your offensive power when fighting with two weapons. Your chance to hit is increased by +1 per 20 points in this skill. Note that fighting with two weapons costs 800 energy points plus the maximum of the weapon speeds for the weapons being used, minus 4 energy points per skill point in this skill.
This skill can be used to confuse monsters. You try to project another voice and if successful, this helps to confuse monsters for two or more turns. This skill is very difficult to use effectively.
[+] Whoever uses this skill is able to act competently while crossing woods and trying to work on trees. Many woodcutters and rangers learn this skill.
Skills can be increased in several ways. If you practice a skill quite a lot, you might receive automatic increases in your skill score from time to time. You are also allowed to raise your skill score when you advance to a new level. Increasing skills in this way is not very effective since you are normally not allowed to increase your skills by a lot of points when advancing a level. Practicing the skill often and training a little bit (it is said that some skilled trainers are living in the area known as the Drakalor Chain) can help a lot in this regard.
Marking Skills for Quick SelectionEdit
By using the 'A' command you can mark skills with a number from 0 to 9. This allows you to quickly select skills you like to use very often in a speedier way. If you have marked one or more skills and press the 'a' key, you will be asked whether you want to use a marked skill or choose from the complete list.
Since many skills in ADOM are passive (automatically used), it might be a good idea to mark such skills as 'Detect Traps', 'First Aid' and others.