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For the Fallout 4 difficulty, see Survival mode.

Survival is a skill in Fallout: New Vegas. It replaces the Outdoorsman skill from Fallout and Fallout 2.


The Survival skill allows the player to create more powerful poisons, chems, and consumable food and drink items at campfires scattered around the wasteland as the skill is increased.

Higher levels of the Survival skill also increase the effectiveness of food items including stat changes, whether they are made from Survival recipes or not, up to a tripling effect at a skill level of 100. However, this does include negative effects such as penalties to S.P.E.C.I.A.L. stats or increases to the character's Dehydration, Starvation and Sleep while in Hardcore mode. Radiation effect on foods is not affected.

For example, the gecko steak:
  • Heals 2 HP/second for 15 seconds, -30 Dehydration, -75 Starvation at 0 skill.
  • Heals 4 HP/second for 15 seconds, -60 Dehydration, -150 Starvation at 50 skill.
  • Heals 6 HP/second for 15 seconds, -90 Dehydration, -225 Starvation at 100 skill.

While the skill's name "Survival" would denote it simply being a practiced form of subsistence, the survival skill also encompasses the (relatively) finer points of cuisine in post-apocalyptic America. This is well displayed with the Courier being able to prepare such food items as the wasteland omelet, fire ant fricassée, and atomic cocktail.


\text{Initial level}=2+(2\times\text{Endurance})+\left\lceil\frac{\text{Luck}}{2}\right\rceil

Example: A starting Endurance of 5 and Luck of 5.


Effects on food are affected by the Survival skill with the following equation:

\text{Effect} =\text{Base} \times (1 + \left\lceil\frac{Survival}{50}\right\rceil)

In basic terms, food items become twice as effective with a Survival skill of 50, and three times as effective with a Survival skill of 100. This progression is linear, meaning at a skill level of 75 food items are 2.5x as effective.

Increasing skillEdit

  • The Lad's Life magazine will increase Survival by +10, or +20 with Comprehension.
  • Caesar's armor increases Survival skill by 5 points, but it is a faction armor.
  • Honest HeartsGametitle-FNV HH The Park ranger hat and Sorrows outfit both increase Survival by +5.
  • Lonesome Road (add-on)Gametitle-FNV LR The US Army combat armor raises Survival by +2.
  • Any armor or clothing that increases Endurance, +2
  • Buffout +6 Survival, but only if Endurance isn't already at 10.
  • Sierra Madre Martini +8 Survival, but only if Endurance isn't already at 10.

Survival in quests and explorationEdit

Survival-based perksEdit

Perk Requirement Level Additional Requirements
Hunter 30 2
Old World Gourmet Dead MoneyGametitle-FNV DM 45 2 Endurance 6
Entomologist 45 4 Intelligence 4
Rad Child 70 4
Travel Light 45 4
Home on the Range Honest HeartsGametitle-FNV HH 70 8
Rad Resistance 40 8 Endurance 5
Tribal Wisdom Honest HeartsGametitle-FNV HH 70 8
Animal Friend 45 10 Charisma 6
Walker Instinct Lonesome Road (add-on)Gametitle-FNV LR 50 18
Mile in Their Shoes Old World Blues (add-on)Gametitle-FNV OWB 25 20
Them's Good Eatin' Old World Blues (add-on)Gametitle-FNV OWB 55 20
Roughin' It Lonesome Road (add-on)Gametitle-FNV LR 100 28


Survival appears only in Fallout: New Vegas, although it is based on the Outdoorsman skill from Fallout and Fallout 2.

Behind the scenesEdit

Internally the Survival skill is identified as "AVThrowing," though one cannot see this designation unless examining the game's resources using third-party editing utilities such as FNVEdit. This is because the Survival skill takes the place of the planned, but ultimately scrapped Throwing skill from Fallout 3, including its skill "slot" and associated Form IDs.

See alsoEdit

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