Our Sinking City Skills Guide contains everything you need to know about the skills/abilities in the game as well as some of the best skills you should consider investing your Knowledge Points in. Skills can easily be regarded as one of the most crucial components of the gameplay experience because the ‘right’ abilities cannot only boast Reed’s combat prowess but can also help you solve cases in a jiffy.


The Sinking City Skills

There are a total of three Skill Trees in the game i.e. Combat Proficiency, Vigor, and Mind. Each of these Skill Trees targets a specific aspect of enhancing Charles Reed and it is totally upto you to decide which aspect you want to upgrade first.

As for unlocking skills, you need to have Knowledge Points to do so. You’ll continue to earn Knowledge Points as you progress through the game. However, do note that, as with other games out there, some of the abilities are locked behind low-tier skills.

Combat Proficiency

The skills in Combat Proficiency skill tree focus on improving how Charles Reeds handles weapons, traps, and ammunition.

Skills/Abilities Uses/Effects
Ankle Biter Enemies are held in place for increased duration of time in the traps you lay.
Trapper You can set traps twice as fast.
Leg Cutter Damage dealt to enemies is increased by 100% as the traps get sharper teeth dealing more damage.
High Yield You get a +30% increase in damage dealt by grenades and firebombs.
Hardboiled Detective Allows you to keep an extra bullet loaded in your pistol which gives you a +10% chance to deal double damage.
Sapper Charge Your grenades and firebombs have an increased range.
War Veteran Damage dealt to enemies with the Battle Rifle is increased by +20%.
Sharpshooter This grants you a +10% chance to deal double damage with the Battle Rifle.
Firm Grip Increases the accuracy of SMGs.
Recoil Control Accuracy of SMGs increases even more.
Nimble Fingers You can reload your Revolver faster.
Gunslinger It grants you a +10% chance of dealing double damage with the Revolver.


Vigor skill tree has abilities that enhance the physical power of Reed. You can gain increased ammo carrying capacity and more.

Skills/Abilities Uses/Effects
Deep Pockets You can carry +6 extra Revolver rounds.
Bottomless Pockets You can carry +4 extra Shotgun shells.
Army-Issue Bandolier You can carry +10 extra SMG rounds.
Bandolier You can carry +3 extra Rifle rounds.
Extra Clip You can carry +7 extra Pistol rounds.
Field Medic You can carry +1 extra First Aid Kit and Antipsychotic.
Heavy Ordinance You can carry +1 extra Grenade and Firebomb.
Abnormal Endurance It increases your HP.
Eldritch Endurance It increases your HP even more.
Unnatural Recovery It enables you to regenerate a tiny portion of your HP in combat for a final chance to fight before you’re killed.
Furtive Lurker Fall damage decreased by -50%
Indigestible Damage dealt to Charles by man-eating eels is decreased by -50%.
Lightning Bruiser The speed of melee attacks is increased.
Privateye the Sailor Increased melee damage.


Mind skill tree features skills that affect the mental crafting skills of Charles. With these abilities, you can become more proficient with crafting and are more likely to survive.

Skills/Abilities Effects/Uses
Crafting Efficiency: Explosives You get a +15% chance to save materials when crafting explosives.
Crafting Efficiency: Supplies You get a +15% chance to save materials when crafting Sanity Kits, Traps, and First Aid Kits.
Crafting Efficiency: Ammunition You get a +15% chance to save materials when crafting ammunition.
Smart Picking You can carry +25 pieces of any crafting material.
Master Survivalist You get an extra +10% chance to save materials when crafting any items in the game.
Radiant Mind Resistance to losing sanity is increased by +15%.
Absolute Clarity You gain more experience as well as an increase in your resistance to losing your sanity.
Effulgent Mind Resistance to losing sanity is increased by +25%.
Deductive Method You gain an extra +15% XP from all sources.
Detective Analysis It gives you an extra +10% XP from all sources.
Silver Tongue The quantity of quest rewards you earn is doubled.
No Charity It gives you a +50% chance of earning double quest reward items.

You can upgrade all these skills in the “Skills” tab which you will find in the ‘Pause Menu’. As mentioned earlier, to unlock advanced skills, you’ll have to unlock the basic skills required for them first.

Best Sinking City Skills to Unlock First

When you’re working on your early cases in the game, focus on obtaining skills that boost your HP, Sanity resistance, and give you more XP which will help you level up faster and unlock even more skills.

There are two skills chains that you must obtain as soon as you can:

  • Unnatural Recovery > Abnormal Endurance > Eldritch Endurance
  • Absolute Charity > Detective Analysis > Deductive Method

Unlocking these six abilities first in the game will benefit you greatly. You’ll survive longer due to an increased HP pool and the extra XP you gain from activities will earn you more Knowledge Points.

After these, you should move to skills that increase your weapon efficiency and increased Sanity resistance. You can also unlock skills that double your quest item rewards and the ones in the Mind skill tree.

These are all the Skills and Skill Trees in The Sinking City. Which skills do you recommend going for first, let us know!