Starfinder Survival Skill

Survival (Wis)

Survival Skill

Key Ability Wisdom

Use Untrained Yes

Armor Check Penalty No

Class Skill For Mystic, Operative, Soldier

You can survive in and make your way safely through almost any kind of wilderness, follow trails and tracks, deal with wild animals, and ride tamed ones.

Use the following base DCs for many of the listed tasks of the Survival skill. These DCs may be adjusted by the GM to reflect other circumstances.

Endure severe weather15
Handle an animal10 + 1-1/2 × CR of animal
Live off the land10
Predict weather15
Rear a wild animal15 + 1-1/2 × CR of animal

Endure Severe Weather

You can use Survival to better withstand the effects of severe weather. Typically, one check determines the success of your efforts for a single day. If you succeed at the check, you gain a +2 bonus to Fortitude saving throws against severe weather while moving up to half your overland speed, or a +4 bonus if you remain stationary and build a temporary shelter. You can grant this bonus to one other creature for every 1 point by which your result exceeds the DC. You can’t take 20 on Survival checks to endure severe weather.

Follow Tracks

You can use Survival to either find tracks or follow tracks you have found for 1 mile or until they become difficult to follow, whichever occurs first. Finding tracks requires a full action. If you move at half your speed or less, you take no penalty to your Survival check. You can move at your full speed with a –5 penalty to the check or at twice your normal speed with a –20 penalty to the check.

The base DCs for Survival checks to follow tracks depend on the surface and are adjusted based on prevailing conditions and the group being tracked; such modifiers are cumulative. The GM may further adjust DCs to reflect other circumstances such as the number of creatures being tracked, local gravity, and weather conditions.

Very soft ground (fresh snow, thick dust, wet mud)5
Soft ground (soft earth, drying mud)10
Firm ground (fields, woods, thick rugs, dirty or dusty floors)15
Hard ground (bare rock, most flooring)20
ConditionDC Modifier
Multiple creatures in group being tracked-1 per three creatures
Time since tracks were made+1 per 24 hours
Overcast or moonless night+6
Tracked group moves at half speed and hides trail+5

Handle an Animal

As a move action, you can use Survival to improve the attitude of an animal with an Intelligence score of 1 or 2. This functions just like a Diplomacy check to change a person’s initial attitude, but it is not language-dependent. A typical domesticated animal has a starting attitude of indifferent, while wild animals are usually unfriendly.

Live Off the Land

You can use Survival to keep yourself and others fed in the wild by hunting and foraging, enabling you to move up to half your overland speed without needing food and water supplies. Typically, one check determines the success of your efforts for a single day. You can provide food and water for one other character for every 2 points by which the result of your check exceeds 10. In some cases, an environment may be so inhospitable (such as an airless asteroid) that it is impossible to live off the land. You can’t take 20 on Survival checks to live off the land.


Once each hour while traveling through unfamiliar terrain and each time you move close to a natural hazard such as quicksand or patches of poisonous atmosphere, you can use Survival to keep from getting lost or to notice or avoid the hazard.

Predict Weather

You can use Survival to predict the weather up to 24 hours in advance. You must spend at least 1 minute observing the surrounding area and its current weather patterns. You can predict the weather an additional day in advance for every 5 points by which your result exceeds 15. You can’t take 20 on Survival checks to predict weather.

Rear a Wild Animal (Trained Only)

You can use Survival to raise a wild animal from infancy so that it becomes domesticated. At the GM’s discretion, you might be able to use this task to rear wild creatures other than animals. Rearing a wild animal typically takes months or even years. If you succeed at the check at the end of this time, the animal is domesticated and has an initial attitude of friendly toward you. You can rear as many as three animals of the same kind at one time.

Ride a Creature

You can use Survival to ride an animal or another beast as a mount. The most typical actions while riding a creature don’t require checks. As a move action, you can either mount, ride (using the mount’s speed instead of yours), or dismount from a creature. Saddling a creature typically takes at least 1 minute, but the process could take longer if you’re using an unusual saddle or mount.

The following actions do require Survival checks.

The base DCs for Survival checks to ride a creature depend on the attempted action and apply to riding the most common types of creatures and animals. At the GM’s discretion, dangerous or exotic beasts or those ill-suited for use as mounts can increase the DC of Survival checks to ride them by anywhere from 2 to 10. If you ride a creature bareback, you take a –5 penalty to Survival checks to ride or control that mount.

Control mount in battle20
Fast mount or dismount20
Fight with a combat-trained mount10
Guide with knees5
Soft fall15
Spur mount15
Stay mounted5

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Starfinder Core Rulebook © 2017, Paizo Inc.; Authors: Logan Bonner, Jason Bulmahn, Amanda Hamon Kunz, Jason Keeley, Robert G. McCreary, Stephen Radney-MacFarland, Mark Seifter, Owen K.C. Stephens, and James L. Sutter, with Alexander Augunas, Judy Bauer, John Compton, Adam Daigle, Crystal Frasier, Lissa Guillet, Thurston Hillman, Erik Mona, Mark Moreland, Jessica Price, F. Wesley Schneider, Amber E. Scott, and Josh Vogt.