Perks are used by the player to increase their effectiveness with many different Game Mechanics (although not all of them). They can make the player more proficient with a certain type of weapon. They can help the player collect resources at a higher rate with Mother Lode, or teach the player to craft new items or higher quality items. They can give a flat bonus to the player's various resistances. Perks are the player's way of progressing in 7 Days to Die, and is a very important part of surviving.
Experience points are awarded every Character Level, granting the player 1 skill point each Character Level to increase the level of Attributes and Perks.
You can simulate perk builds with the Alpha 19 Perks Calculator.
There are 5 main Attributes: Perception, Strength, Fortitude, Agility, Intellect, each having 10 levels and giving a bonus in that category with every level. The player starts with a level in all five attributes and can continue leveling them up as they please. Levels 2-5 cost one skill point, levels 6-8 cost two and the last two levels cost 3 points. The difference between Attributes and Perks is that Attributes must be learned first, as most Perks require a certain level of Attribute, which also requires a certain Character Level. Every attribute has its own perks, but all attributes have at least two different weapon perks under them. Drugs can be used to increase attributes momentarily and certain clothes increase them permanently as long as the said piece of clothing is worn.
Attributes must be upgraded to certain levels before their Perks can be purchased or upgraded. Perks can be increased under the effect of a drug, but if the attribute's level returns to a lower value than the perk requires, the benefit from said perk is lost. For example, if a player has Fortitude at level 3 and Heavy Armor at 2, they can raise their Fortitude to 5 using Fort Bites and buy the third level of Heavy Armor. However, after the effect from Fort Bites ends, the benefit from the third level of Heavy Armor is removed and the player is treated as if the only had level 2 of that perk. The third level still shows as unlocked but with a red mark stating "Disabled by status effect". However, once the attribute is leveled to the required level, the perk will be upgraded automatically without a need for another skill point. Because of this, it is advisable to only unlock and level up perks that are unlocked by attribute levels gained from usage of skill points or clothing. Most Perks require the exact same Attribute levels, but there are exceptions.
|Skill Level||Most Perks||Lucky Looter &||Pack Mule||Miner 69'er & Mother Lode||Robotics Inventor||Advanced Engineering||Grease Monkey|
|1||Attribute 1||Perception 1||Strength 1||Strength 1||Intelligence 3||Intelligence 1||Intelligence 2|
|2||Attribute 3||Perception 2||Strength 2||Strength 2||Intelligence 5||Intelligence 4||Intelligence 4|
|3||Attribute 5||Perception 3||Strength 3||Strength 3||Intelligence 6||Intelligence 6||Intelligence 6|
|4||Attribute 7||Perception 5||Strength 4||Strength 5||Intelligence 8||Intelligence 8||Intelligence 8|
|5||Attribute 10||Perception 7||Strength 5||Strength 7||Intelligence 10||Intelligence 10||Intelligence 10|
Perception is the measure of your sensory awareness. Level one of this perk gives 200% headshot damage to spears, rifles and explosive weapons. Levels 2-8 increase headshot damage by 10% and chance to dismember by 5%. Levels 9 and 10 increase headshot damage by 15% and dismember chance by 5%. It's split into three subcategories with various perks related to weapons, general perception and scavenging.
|Dead Eye||"Specialize in taking keen aim with rifles and wasting your target with an expertly-placed bullet. One shot, one kill."|
|Demolitions Expert||"Specialize in explosive weapons to stun, cripple and dismember your foes."|
|Javelin Master||"Learn to inflict more damage and throw spears further and with more accuracy."|
|General Perception Perks|
|Lock Picking||"Learn to pick locks faster and break less lock picks."|
|The Infiltrator||"Use your heightened senses to take less damage from traps."|
|Animal Tracker||"Learn to detect and track animals within 100m and never go hungry."|
|The Penetrator||"You find weak spots in a target's armor and can use AP rifle bullets to shoot through multiple organic targets."|
|Lucky Looter||"Specialize in tracking down the motherlode, and maybe getting a little extra for your trouble. You find better loot with every perk level."|
|Treasure Hunter||"Become one of the greatest treasure hunters of all time learning tricks that would even make Blackbeard envious."|
|Salvage Operations||"Waste not, want not! Salvage items for more resources with a wrench, ratchet, or impact driver."|
Strength is the measure of your muscular might. Level one of this perk gives 200% headshot damage to shotguns, clubs and sledgehammers. Levels 2-8 increase headshot damage by 10% and chance to dismember by 5%. Levels 9 and 10 increase headshot damage by 15% and dismember chance by 5%. It's split into three subcategories with various perks related to weapons, general strength and construction.
|Boomstick||"Specialize with shotguns and send your enemies to meet their maker. Do more damage, blow limbs off, shoot and reload faster."|
|Pummel Pete||"Specialize in knocking your foes senseless with clubs and bats."|
|Skull Crusher||"Specialize in destroying enemies with heavy weapons like sledgehammers."|
|General Strength Perks|
|Sexual Tyrannosaurus||"Specialize in unleashing a relentless assault of blows guaranteed to leave your prey slack-jawed at your unyielding stamina."|
|Heavy Armor||"Specialize in shielding yourself with iron and steel, becoming an unstoppable behemoth on the battlefield."|
|Pack Mule||"You're a pack mule and can carry more items in your inventory without suffering movement penalties."|
|Master Chef||"Create more filling meals with advanced benefits and learn to cook faster."|
|Miner 69’er||"Maximize your mining efforts by increasing tool damage to bring down rocks and trees faster."|
|Mother Lode||"Harvest more resources and bring home the mother lode."|
Fortitude is the measure of your physical resilience. Level one of this perk gives 200% headshot damage to fists and machine guns. Levels 2-8 increase headshot damage by 10% and chance to dismember by 5%. Levels 9 and 10 increase headshot damage by 15% and dismember chance by 5%. It's split into three subcategories with various perks related to weapons, survival, and recovery.
|The Brawler||"Learn martial arts and use your fists to stun, knock down, disarm and ragdoll your opponent.|
|Machine Gunner||"Become a commando using automatic weapons to slay your foes."|
|The Huntsman||"Specialize in hunting your prey and harvesting more meat, bone and leather."|
|Well Insulated||"Specialize in using a combination of clothing and natural resilience to weather even the harshest of environments."|
|Living Off The Land||"Specialize in harvesting more crops using your hands or a tool."|
|Pain Tolerance||"Specialize in shrugging off blows, fighting through pain and staying in the fight when others would be down for the count."|
|Healing Factor||"Specialize in boosting your natural healing rates as long as you're not starving."|
|Iron Gut||"Specialize in gastrointestinal health to reduce chance of food poisoning and nutrient uptake to use less calories and oxygen swimming."|
|Rule 1: Cardio||"Train your body in number one tactic against the zombie menace: Running away from them."|
Agility is the measure of your athletic prowess. Level one of this perk gives 200% headshot damage and have a 5% chance to dismember with bows, handguns, and knives. Levels 2-8 increase headshot damage by 10% and chance to dismember by 5%. Levels 9 and 10 increase headshot damage by 15% and dismember chance by 5%. It's split into three subcategories with various perks related to weapons, general strength and stealth.
|Archery||"Master the use of bows and crossbows."|
|Gunslinger||"Settle your disputes the old way and be a gunslinger in the apocalypse. Master the use of handguns and SMG. Unlocks pistol crafting."|
|Deep Cuts||"Specialize in using bladed weapons like knives or machetes (not axes) to bleed your foes dry."|
|Run and Gun||"Improve your hip fire accuracy and run faster while reloading any ranged weapon."|
|Flurry of Blows||"Specialize in one-handed melee weapons and beating the tar out of your opponents in a furious flurry of quick strikes."|
|Light Armor||"Specialize in light armor to increase armor rating and armor durability."|
|Parkour||"Specialize in acrobatically getting anywhere you want to go, no matter how far up or far down that may be."|
|Hidden Strike||"Specialize in catching your enemies unaware while you are sneaking and they are resting or wandering aimlessly."|
|From The Shadows||"Specialize in sneaking around in the dark and making less noise in general."|
Intellect is the measure of your mental ability. Increasing Intellect improves head shot damage with intellect governed weapons such as Robotic turrets and stun batons. Level one of this perk gives 200% headshot damage and have a 5% chance to dismember with stun batons and Robotic turrets. Levels 2-8 increase headshot damage by 10% and chance to dismember by 5%. Levels 9 and 10 increase headshot damage by 15% and dismember chance by 5%. It's split into three subcategories with various perks related to weapons, general strength and craftsmanship.
|Electrocutioner||"Learn how to use stun batons more effectively. Incapacitate your victims easier and do more damage."|
|Robotics Inventor||"You are fascinated with robotics. Learn to use and craft deployed weapons."|
|Better Barter||"Specialize in convincing area traders to give you a better deal and open up their secret stashes of the really good stuff."|
|The Daring Adventurer||"Be a daring adventurer! Get better rewards for doing quests."|
|Charismatic Nature||"You are an inspiration to your allies, increasing their combat prowess."|
|Physician||"Use medicine and health items more effectively."|
|Advanced Engineering||"Engineer advanced items such as workbenches, electrical items and traps and craft 20% faster on workbenches."|
|Grease Monkey||"Learn to build vehicles from junk in the wasteland! Vehicles can be assembled from parts without this perk."|
Perk Books provide the player with certain perks after reading them. They can be found anywhere in the world by looting containers. Bookcases are a great place for the player to look for Perk Books, as they have an approximate 45% chance of containing a volume of a Perk Book series. Bookcases can be found in bulk at Book Stores, but also can be found in other buildings in small amounts. There are 19 Perk Book series, each with 7 volumes. If the player reads all 7 volumes of a given Perk Book series, they will gain the bonus perk that corresponds to the book series, in addition to the perk given by the last read volume. Each Perk Book series has a different theme indicated by the name and cover art, and the volume's perks within them all apply to that theme, for example: The perks given by the volumes of the Lucky Looter Perk Book series will make the player find better loot.
What skills to get first, keep in mind that you can get enough points to max out every skill.