Combat Skills

From Starfield Fans Wiki
See also: Skills

There are 17 Skills in the Combat Skill tree. 5 Tier 1 (Novice) Skills, 5 Tier 2 (Advanced) Skills, 4 Tier 3 (Expert) Skills, and 3 Tier 4 (Master) Skills.


SkillTierDescriptionRank 1Rank 2Rank 3Rank 4
Ballistics1Centuries of conflict have proven that when it comes to threat elimination, few things stack up to the reliable power of high-speed projectiles.Ballistic weapons do 10% more damage.Ballistic weapons do 20% more damage.Ballistic weapons do 30% more damage.Ballistic weapons range is increased by 30%.
Dueling1Considered by many to be a lost art, close attacks with a melee weapon can often be deadlier than ranged combat when carried out by a skilled practitioner.Melee weapons do 25% more damage. Take 10% less damage while wielding a melee weapon.Melee kills make you run 20% faster for 10 seconds.Melee weapons do 50% more damage. Take 15% less damage while wielding melee weapon.Melee kills heal you for 10% of your health.
Lasers1Personal laser weapons are in widespread use across the Settled Systems, and specialized training can greatly increase their effectiveness.Laser weapons do 10% more damage.Laser weapons do 20% more damage.Laser weapons do 30% more damage.Laser weapons have a 5% chance to set a target on fire.
Pistol Certification1Considering the popularity of the personal sidearm in the Settled Systems, familiarity with such weapons is often considered essential.Pistols do 10% more damage.Pistols do 20% more damage.Pistols do 30% more damage.Pistol kills grant +25% critical hit chance for 5 seconds,
Shotgun Certification1The cornerstone of close quarters combat, or CQC, The shotgun has proven a simple, deadly weapon for hundreds of years.Shotguns do 10% more damage.Shotguns do 20% more damage.Shotguns do 30% more damage.Shotgun kills grant a small chance to stun additional targets with shotguns for a limited time.
Demolitions2With the proper adjustment of chemical mixtures, coupled with modifications to the detonation mechanism, explosives can produce an even greater destructive yield.Throwing grenades now shows a trajectory arc. Explosions have a 25% larger radius.Explosives do 25% more damage.Reduce damage taken from explosives by 25%.All previous bonuses are doubled.
Heavy Weapon Certification2Oversized weapons may prove cumbersome to wield, but their excessive damage output can't be ignored, especially in the hands of a trained combatant.Heavy weapons do 10% more damage.Heavy weapons do 20% more damage.Heavy weapons do 30% more damage.Gain 25% Physical resistance while aiming down sights with a heavy weapon.
Incapacitation2EM weapons are generally employed to damage robots, but can also be used to render human beings unconscious.EM weapons do 5% more damage.EM weapons do 10% more damage.EM weapons do 15% more damage.EM weapons have a 15% chance to do 300% EM damage.
Particle Beams2While considered by some to be exotic, particle weapons can be a devastating combat option, subjecting a target to multiple forms of damage.Particle beam weapons do 10% more damage.Particle beam weapons do 20% more damage.Particle beam weapons do 30% more damage.Particle beam weapons have +5% crit chance.
Rifle Certification2Whether used for combat, hunting, or some other deadly purpose, the rifle has become a mainstay of Settled Systems weaponry.Rifles do 10% more damage.Rifles do 20% more damage.Rifles do 30% more damage.Reload rifles 30% faster while you're standing still.
Marksmanship3Perhaps no combat scenario is more frightening, or lethal, as a single-shot weapon wielded by someone skilled in critical shot placement.Increase critical hit chance with non-automatic ranged weapons by 3%.Increase critical hit chance with non-automatic ranged weapons by 8%.Increase critical hit chance with non-automatic ranged weapons by 15%.Critical hits using a non-automatic ranged weapon without a scope do double damage and those with scopes knock down enemies on the next shot.
Rapid Reloading3In the chaos of combat, the seconds needed to reload your weapon could be the difference between life and death.Reload Ballistic weapons 30% faster.Reload Energy and EM weapons 30% faster.Reload Particle Beam weapons 30% faster. 50% chance to avoid getting interrupted while reloading.Chance on hitting enemies to increase reload speed for all weapons by 50% for 15 seconds.
Sniper Certification3Only a trained sniper truly understands all the elements necessary to patiently and effectively neutralize a target at excessive range.Scoped weapons are steadier and have less sway.You can hold your breath longer with scoped weapons.Headshots while aiming with a scoped weapon have a +25% critical hit chance.Scoped weapons do 50% more damage while using the scope.
Targeting3While careful aiming is generally preferred in combat, "shooting from the hip" can prove a fast and deadly alternative with sufficient training.Increased accuracy and range when shooting without aiming. Marks up to one enemy within 25m that damages you.Notably increased accuracy and range when shooting without aiming. Marks up to two enemies within 50m that damage you.Greatly increased accuracy and range when shooting without aiming. Marks up to three enemies within 75m that damage you.10% chance to disarm targets hit when shooting without aiming. Marks up to four enemies within 100m that damage you.
Armor Penetration4By identifying gaps or weak points in body armor, an attacker can often gain a tactical advantage in combat.Attacks ignore 15% of a target's armor.Attacks ignore 30% of a target's armor.Attacks Ignore 50% of a target's armor.Enemy armor is decreased by 25% for 6 seconds after a [[critical hit]].
Crippling4Specifically targeting the pressure points and nerves of various limbs can disable an opponent, limiting their combat effectiveness.Human enemies have a 30% increased chance to enter a downed state after taking enough damage.Humanoid enemies have a 50% increased chance to not naturally recover from a downed state.Human enemies now can enter a downed state earlier.Previous ranks now apply to all enemy types. You now do 100% more damage to downed enemies.
Sharpshooting4For those who specialize in precise targeting that maximizes damage, combat is often a quickly efficient affair.Increase headshot critical damage by 50% with ranged weapons.Increase critical damage to enemy legs by 50% with ranged weapons.Increase all critical damage to enemies by 50% with ranged weapons.Ranged critical hit kills increase your critical hit chance with all ranged weapons by 25% for 20 seconds.


While the primary focus of Combat Skills caters to ranged combat, there's an outstanding outlier: Dueling. This unique skill enhances proficiency with melee weapons and occupies a singular place in the Combat skill tree. However, this doesn't suggest that melee combat within Starfield is lacking in potency. Rather, Dueling complements many abilities found in the Physical tree. Similar to the trio of skills constituting the unarmed combat system, every rank you unlock in Dueling unveils a breadth of capabilities.

Noteworthy skills from the Physical tree that synergize seamlessly with Dueling include Ascension (mentioned earlier), in tandem with Stealth and Concealment. These latter abilities empower you to navigate stealthily, setting you up to unleash up to 8.4x the standard damage with a melee weapon.

For those with a predilection for ranged combat, the Combat tree lays out a plethora of choices. Conventional weapon types are split into two primary subclasses: Ballistic Weapons (inflicting Physical damage) and Laser Weapons (yielding Energy damage). These are further divided into Pistols, Shotguns, Rifles, and Sniper Rifles.

Then, there's the more formidable classes: Mag Weapons (causing Physical damage) and Particle Beam Weapons (delivering Energy damage). Both of these can be tailored within a rifle frame, allowing variations like Shotgun, Rifle, and Sniper.

Rounding up, the game introduces standalone categories: Heavy Weapons (boasting either rapid fire or potent damage), Demolition (specializing in explosives), and Marksman (championing bows and crossbows). The damage potency for each weapon type varies based on its unique properties and the particular ammo or munition employed.

It's worth noting that mastering these primary weapon skills enhances your damage capacity, shooting range, and aimed precision. This progression permits you to hone in on your weapon preferences. Beyond the mentioned skills, the Combat tree offers additional abilities to amplify your prowess, be it shooting without direct aim, employing a scope, evading enemy damage protection, incapacitating limbs, or even causing catastrophic damage with precise headshots.