The Outer Worlds Character Attributes Guide

The Outer Worlds Character Attributes Guide

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Powerful combat damage or faster attack speed? Critical damage amount or chance? Better regeneration of health or easier management of reputation? Oh, and not to mention all of the Skills that will get affected by all of these choices as well…

Tough decisions to make. Sometimes we wish we just had a couple more of those precious points to invest.

Character Attributes in The Outer Worlds come first in the character creation process and deservingly so: investing the initial points in this section will affect your starting skills as a result. These first steps will define the core archetype of your character and potentially your entire gameplay experience.

Well, you can play it safe and make your Outer Worlds character Jack of all trades (master of none), or you can come in with a solid understanding and even a strategy and invest towards your ideal archetype starting with the very first steps. Arguably, it’s not the worst strategy to avoid any penalties or immediate decisions, but the resulting Skill points will be pretty disappointing until you reach mid-game.

Consider this instead: Master of stealth and perfect headshots. A tremendous tank to absorb the damage and deal back thrice as much. An irresistibly likeable and inspiring leader with an unmatchable force of companions.

The Outer Worlds has an exciting interconnected system to allow for all of these builds and many more to be implemented effectively into play. We will guide you through this system step-by-step.

 

outer-worlds-character-creation-attributes

 

It’s the first step in the Character Creation process, followed by Skills.

During character creation the player is given 6 points to spend into each of the available categories: Body (Strength, Dexterity), Mind (Intelligence, Perception), and Personality (Charm, Temperament).

Points will be spent into each of the 6 available subcategories individually, which all start at the Average level. Going down a level recovers a point, going up a level will cost a point.

The levels are: Below Average ▼, Average ⁃ (Default), Good ▲, High ▲▲, and Very High ▲▲▲.

Going down a level in a few of the skills to master the others might be a tempting option, but Below Average attributes come with an additional penalty to discourage liberal manipulation.

Note that you can’t change your Attribute assignment at any time in the game, and some of the granted bonuses will make a difference to the resulting build of your character. Skill bonuses will matter a lot in the beginning and the percentage bonuses will yield noticeable results later in the game. Choose wisely!

 

outer-worlds-character-creation

 

the outer worlds body attributes

Strength is your melee damage-dealing attribute, as well as your carrying capacity.

The 10-30% increase provided by this attribute is essential for the Melee weapon skill tree. Having higher carrying capacity is useful for any adventuring character, but the loss can be mitigated by the bonus Carrying Capacity from your Companions or the ability to sell to Vendors via Hacking skill.

Attribute Levels:

  • Below Average ▼
    • ▼ -10% Melee Damage
    • ▼ 60kg Carrying Capacity
    • ▼ -100% Tactical Time Dilation Move Time
    • Penalty: Tactical Time Dilation drain for movement is doubled.
  • Average ⁃
    • 0% Melee Damage
    • 80kg Carrying Capacity
  • Good ▲
    • ▲ +10% Melee Damage
    • ▲ 100kg Carrying Capacity
  • High ▲▲
    • ▲ +20% Melee Damage
    • ▲ 120kg Carrying Capacity
  • Very High ▲▲▲
    • ▲ +30% Melee Damage
    • ▲ 140kg Carrying Capacity

Below Average:

If you are tempted to drop this skill a notch because a -10% decrease doesn’t sound bad if you plan on using multi-hit weapons, consider if you want to use TTD (tactical time dilation).

It’s a move that slows down time during combat to help with strategic targeting that is unlocked with the first rank of every single weapon skill. Its cost (movement drain) will be doubled by the penalty, which is important if you plan on moving around in that mode.

If you plan on having a ranged sniper build, the penalties from this decrease will be far less severe, since you are more likely to remain still during battle. Likewise, if you plan on having a hack-and-slash build, locational targeting and consequently the TTD will matter less to you.

Affected skills:

  • 1-Handed Melee
  • 2-Handed Melee
  • Heavy Weapons
  • Block
  • Inspiration
  • Intimidate

Dexterity is the melee attack speed attribute, that affects ranged weapon reload speed as well.

The reload speed is not needed for a close-combat fighter (and can make quite a difference for the Ranged builds), but the 10-30% melee attack speed increase can make a significant difference in melee builds.

Attribute Levels:

  • Below Average ▼
    • ▼ -10% Melee Weapon Attack Speed
    • ▼ -25% Ranged Weapon Reload Speed
    • ▼ -30% Weapon Durability
    • Penalty: Weapon Durability Loss is increased
  • Average ⁃
    • 0% Melee Weapon Attack Speed
    • 0% Ranged Weapon Reload Speed
  • Good ▲
    • ▲ +10% Melee Weapon Attack Speed
    • ▲ +10% Ranged Weapon Reload Speed
  • High ▲▲
    • ▲ +20% Melee Weapon Attack Speed
    • ▲ +20% Ranged Weapon Reload Speed
  • Very High ▲▲▲
    • ▲ +30% Melee Weapon Attack Speed
    • ▲ +30% Ranged Weapon Reload Speed

Below Average:

Getting the -10% decrease in attack speed is not crucial for a close-combat fighter, but the developers snuck in an unexpectedly high Weapon Durability Loss, which can affect any weapon user severely, considering that the weapons break down quickly even as is. The only way to counteract that penalty effectively is with perks and Engineering skills.

Affected Skills:

  • 1-Handed Melee
  • Handguns
  • Dodge
  • Block
  • Sneak
  • Lockpick

the outer worlds mind attributes

Intelligence is the critical hit bonus damage attribute.

The Critical Damage is important to the majority of character builds, since there is no easy way to passively increase the damage your character deals in The Outer Worlds. Many bonuses in the game and your weapon Skills will increase your Critical Rate, which will significantly improve the damage.

Attribute Levels:

  • Below Average ▼
    • ▼ -20% Critical Damage
    • Penalty: Critical Hit Damage is drastically reduced.
    • Words are hard. Thinking no good.
    • Dumb dialog options unlocked.
  • Average ⁃
    • 0% Critical Damage
  • Good ▲
    • ▲ +10% Critical Damage
  • High ▲▲
    • ▲ +20% Critical Damage
  • Very High ▲▲▲
    • ▲ +35% Critical Damage

Below Average:

Intelligence is an interesting case, despite its significant -20% decrease in Critical Damage.

It’s not the absolute worst skill to drop down for Ranged builds due to the +50% increase in critical damage across all Ranged skills upon unlocking the second rank (Competent).

Also, the high Headshot/Weakspot damage of Perception provides an optional alternative and the loss can also be somewhat mitigated by the regular raw power output of heavier ranged and melee weapons.

In addition, the “dumb dialog options” can be taken as a bonus for those who like to have extra laughs during their playthrough.

Affected Skills:

  • Long Guns
  • Persuade
  • Hack
  • Medical
  • Science
  • Determination

Perception is the Headshot and Weakspot damage bonus attribute.

This is The Outer Worlds’ solid alternative to other sources of damage for those who enjoy experimenting with locational targeting in battle (especially with the TTD move) and enjoy being rewarded for the extra effort. This is a strong area of investment for most Ranged builds. You will eventually start discovering that it makes a difference in dialog with your companions, too.

Attribute Levels:

  • Below Average ▼
    • ▼ -100% Bonus to Extra Headshot/Weakspot Damage
    • Penalty: Headshot and Weakspot Damage hits do not inflict extra damage.
  • Average ⁃
    • 0% Bonus to Extra Headshot/Weakspot Damage
  • Good ▲
    • ▲ +10% Bonus to Extra Headshot/Weakspot Damage
  • High ▲▲
    • ▲ +20% Bonus to Extra Headshot/Weakspot Damage
  • Very High ▲▲▲
    • ▲ +35% Bonus to Extra Headshot/Weakspot Damage

Below Average:

If you are not interested in the Headshot and Weakspot damage bonus as a Heavy Weapons Ranged build or as most of the quicker Melee builds, dropping this attribute down might not be of issue. In that case you can increase your dealt damage through other means (like Critical Damage and Attack Speed), while the valuable point can be invested into something else. However, note that all of your starting Ranged skills will be affected as a result as well.

Affected Skills:

  • Handguns
  • Long Guns
  • Heavy Weapons
  • Dodge
  • Lockpick
  • Engineering

Charm is your Faction Reputation and Companion Ability Cooldown attribute.

This is the best attribute to focus on if you plan on utilizing the strengths of your companions frequently in the future, with its 40% ability cooldown decrease (note that this is useful only if you have Novice rank of Inspiration Skill unlocked). It also provides a very significant bonus to the reputation reactions in The Outer Worlds, which could support a more Hero-oriented playthrough with the ability to travel pretty much anywhere and still be welcomed despite some of the quest choices made by the character.

Attribute Levels:

  • Below Average ▼
    • ▼ -20% Companion Ability Refresh
    • ▼ -35% Positive Faction Reputation Reactions
    • ▲ +15% Negative Faction Reputation Reactions
    • Penalty: Reputation Gains are significantly reduced
  • Average ⁃
    • 0% Companion Ability Refresh
    • 0% Positive Faction Reputation Reactions
    • 0% Negative Faction Reputation Reactions
  • Good ▲
    • ▲ +10% Companion Ability Refresh
    • ▲ +10% Positive Faction Reputation Reactions
    • ▼ -10% Negative Faction Reputation Reactions
  • High ▲▲
    • ▲ +25% Companion Ability Refresh
    • ▲ +20% Positive Faction Reputation Reactions
    • ▼ -20% Negative Faction Reputation Reactions
  • Very High ▲▲▲
    • ▲ +40% Companion Ability Refresh
    • ▲ +35% Positive Faction Reputation Reactions
    • ▼ -35% Negative Faction Reputation Reactions

Below Average:

The penalty comes with a harsh drop in companion ability cooldowns and a significantly slowed down reputation gain, which will make faction kills and some quest choices even harsher on your character. This will also signifiantly affect your Dialog and Leadership Skills, which will slow down your Companion benefits significantly early on. However, if you want to play a lone-wolf kind of a character who prefers talking to Vending Machines over Human Vendors anyway, this might be an encouraging roleplaying feature.

Affected Skills:

  • Persuade
  • Lie
  • Intimidate
  • Hack
  • Science
  • Inspiration

Temperament directly improves your natural health regeneration.

Natural health regeneration is a feature important across all of the character archetypes, since combat is one of the most central features of The Outer Worlds and we are all bound to take a few hits during our exploration of the world. Still, you can invest less or nothing into this area if you plan on staying at mid- and far-range in most battle. Temperament also moderates two of the Dialog and one of the Leadership specialized skills.

Attribute Levels:

  • Below Average ▼
      • ▼ 0 Health Regeneration per Second
      • Penalty: No passive health regeneration.
  • Average ⁃
  • 2 Health Regeneration per Second
  • Good ▲
    • ▲ 3.5 Health Regeneration per Second
  • High ▲▲
    • ▲ 5 Health Regeneration per Second
  • Very High ▲▲▲
    • ▲ 7.5 Health Regeneration per Second

Below Average:

Temperament’s penalty is pretty unforgiving, leaving a character without any passive health regeneration. This will risk a much higher chance of death (and a lot of reloads…). The difficulty of the game will noticeably increase due to that. Yet, this could be an interesting challenge feature for those who take their damage evasion skills seriously, or for those who put a lot of trust into their consumables and equipment. Some in-battle health-regeneration Perks and a strong Companion army can also alleviate some of the effect.

Affected Skills:

  • 2-Handed Melee
  • Lie
  • Sneak
  • Medical
  • Engineering
  • Determination

outer-worlds-skills-attribute-distribution

If looking over the attribute features in depth didn’t resolve all concerns of your decision-making process, consider aligning your highest attributes with the skills you plan on pursuing. Don’t get too caught up in this method, however: you will gain plenty of Skill points and gear bonuses during your playthrough that will make up for differences between, say, High and Very High.

Check out our The Outer Worlds Skill Guide first to decide on your specialization.

Each specialized skill is directly regulated by the levels of two attributes. They give a direct numerical bonus to the specialized skill they correspond to:

  • Below Average ▼: -3 rank points
  • Average ⁃: +0 rank points (default starting value is 6)
  • Good ▲: +3 rank points (less of a bonus compared to higher levels)
  • High ▲▲: +7 rank points (additional 4 compared to Good)
  • Very High ▲▲▲: +12 rank points (additional 5 compared to High)

For example, having Good Strength and High Dexterity means that your 1-Handed Melee will start with 16 rank points (below Novice rank) before you make any further investments.

During character creation, a combination of two High attributes in a specialized skill is enough to give it 20 rank points and unlock its Novice rank effects.

It’s technically possible to start the game with 60 total points in a single skill, unlocking Adept rank. You can get 40 points with two Very High attributes and achieve 60 by investing 10 points into a core skill and then 10 into the specialized skill you are pursuing.

However, that will drop your remaining Attribute (and Skill) points to spend to 0. For the Attributes this means that you will have to drop something to Below Average or leave the rest of your Attributes in their default state. For the Skills this means that the second +10 that could be invested across multiple skills in a category is invested into a specific skill instead.

Yet, having two Very High attributes and consequently a couple of Competent rank skills (40) might be a powerful starting move if you have played the game at least once and know your specific gaming style.

Here are all of the Attributes-to-Skill correlations:

Specialized Skill
Affected by Attributes
1-Handed Melee
Strength, Dexterity
2-Handed Melee
Strength, Temperament
Handguns
Dexterity, Perception
Long Guns
Intelligence, Perception
Heavy Weapons
Strength, Perception
Dodge
Dexterity, Perception
Block
Strength, Dexterity
Persuade
Intelligence, Charm
Lie
Charm, Temperament
Intimidate
Strength, Charm
Sneak
Dexterity, Temperament
Hack
Intelligence, Charm
Lockpick
Dexterity, Perception
Medical
Intelligence, Temperament
Science
Intelligence, Charm
Engineering
Perception, Temperament
Inspiration
Strength, Charm
Determination
Intelligence, Temperament
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