When you begin Fallout Shelter you are the new overseer of a Vault-Tec nuclear winter survival vault. Unfortunately, there isn’t a lot of on the job training. Your vault dwellers with live or die based on your decisions. Learn how to use the dwellers’ skills to their fullest by understanding the SPECIAL ratings.
What does SPECIAL mean?
The world of Fallout Shelter runs on the strength of your dwellers. To keep track of your dweller skills, Fallout Shelter uses SPECIAL ratings. Each letter in the word SPECIAL applies to a different skill or trait. Your first dwellers will start with low scores mostly.
S – Strength
P – Perception
E – Endurance
C – Charisma
I – Intelligence
A – Agility
L – Luck
Strength is the primary trait for power generation and increases the HP of your dweller when they level up (there is some argument on this – some insist on Endurance increases HP).
Perception is the primary trait for water treatment and adjusts combat effectiveness (hit ratio).
Endurance is the primary trait for storage rooms and helps in wasteland survival by increasing resistance to radiation. Endurance is also the primary trait for the Nuka-Cola room later in the game.
Charisma is the primary trait for living quarters (and how fast dwellers will make babies) and the radio room. It also influences the “friends” you make in the wastelands.
Intelligence is the primary trait for medical bays and science labs.
Agility is the primary trait for the diner. It also helps your dodge damage in battle and run away in the wastelands when needed.
Luck increases your chances of a bonus each time a room completes production, reduces rush failures, and of finding better loot in the wasteland.
Increasing SPECIAL Scores
You can increase SPECIAL scores through equipment and by training in special training rooms later in the game. Note that when increasing Charisma in the bar you should never let a dweller train (drink) alone or their happiness will plummet.
Values Over 10
Players are seeing increased battle benefits from values over ten but in rooms with multiple dwellers, values over 10 don’t seem to make much difference in room production. Note that dwellers with several median level SPECIAL skills often perform better than dwellers with one insanely high SPECIAL score.
Screenshots are from Fallout Shelter iOS App