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The Sims Online originally launched in December of 2002.
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Introduction

To earn your keep in the game your Sim is going to need skills. Skills allow your Sim to make more money, earn new interactions, craft special objects, and even repair objects at lower costs. There are six different skills in the game to choose from, and you are not limited to just studying one skill. Each skill will give you different interactions and abilities and are earned through the use of several different objects.

Available below are listings of each skill and all the information you need to begin earning skill points, find money objects and job lots that use the specific skill. To see which interactions can be earned through skills, and which objects can be crafted, visit our detailed interactions and crafting guides.

Skill Descriptions & Uses

Mechanical
Mechanical is good for a few different things. You can repair items around your, or a friends, home for a lower price and at a faster rate of speed. Mechanical is also one of the required skills for the Robot Factory job track. You can also profit from having Mechanical skills (the higher the skill the more the payout) by building a Gnome or using the Core Business Unit with two of your friends.
Learn this Skill by Using...
Earn Simoleons by Using... Job Tracks that Use this Skill...
Robot Factory

Cooking
Cooking is a great skill to have. You can prepare home cooked meals with it that are more filling and satisfying to your Sim. You can profit from having the cooking skill by making preserves or making Pizza with a group (the higher the skill the more the payout).
Learn this Skill by Using...
Earn Simoleons by Using... Job Tracks that Use this Skill...
None

Charisma
Charisma has some of the best interactions out of all the skills, you will also need it for the Restaurant job track. You can profit from charisma by using the telemarketing machine, making Pizza, using the band or Maze object with a group of people (the higher the skill the more the payout).
Learn this Skill by Using...
Earn Simoleons by Using... Job Tracks that Use this Skill...
Restaurant

Logic
Logic seems to be the most profitable skill as there are several ways to make money with it, doing chalk boards, making potions, or playing Maze or the Core Business Unit with friends (the higher the skill the more the payout). You will also need this skill to advance in the Robot Factory job track.
Learn this Skill by Using...
Earn Simoleons by Using... Job Tracks that Use this Skill...
Robot Factory

Body
A handy skill to have as it comes with pile drive and some neat moves. You'll need this skill for the Nightclub job track (dancer). You can profit from body by bashing a few piñatas, using the Core Business Unit, playing in a band or making Pizza with a group (the higher the skill the more the payout).
Learn this Skill by Using...
Earn Simoleons by Using... Job Tracks that Use this Skill...
Nightclub - Dancer

Creativity
Looking to become the next Chopin or perhaps Jimi Hendrix of TSO? Then you will be needing creativity. You will also need this skill for the Nightclub job track (DJ). Use an easel to paint, typerwriter to type, or play in a band to profit from this skill.
Learn this Skill by Using...
Earn Simoleons by Using... Job Tracks that Use this Skill...
Nightclub - DJ

Skill Speed

The speed at which your Sim gains skill depends on a few factors: the number of skill objects present that raise a particular skill, the number of Sims working on the same skill, and the property category of the lot you're on. A combination of these factors can produce a minimum skill speed of 10% and an optimum skill speed of 118%.

Having more objects on a lot that increase a particular skill will raise your skill speed. For example, you will build creativity skill faster if you have several pianos on your property, rather than just one. It should be noted, though, that the skill objects do not need to be identical; they only have to raise the same skill. Thus, having a workout bench, a mechanical bull, and a dance cage on your property will give you a faster skill speed than having just one of those objects because all three of them raise body skill. Multiple objects raise skill speed only up to a particular cap. Maximum speed is reached with six objects. Any objects in addition to that will not further increase skill speed.


Skill Speed

If you raise a certain skill with other Sims, skill speed will increase even further. Sims do not have to be using a particular object to boost skill speed; they only need to be raising the same skill. Thus, three Sims using telescopes and three Sims using chess tables have the same skill speed as six Sims using one or the other. The objects do not matter because all the Sims are studying logic. Multiple Sims skilling also increases skill speed only up to a cap. Maximum speed is reached with six Sims studying a particular skill. Any Sims that join in after that do not further boost skill speed.

No. of Skill Objects Number of Sims Studying the Same Skill
1 2 3 4 5 6+
1 11% 25%        
2 14% 28% 42% 67%    
3 18% 32% 46% 72% 96% 103%
4 21% 35% 49% 74% 99% 106%
5 25% 39% 53% 78% 103% 110%
6+ 28% 42% 56% 81% 106% 118%

Lastly, you will raise skill faster if you use objects on a property in the Skills category. At properties in any other category, you can achieve a maximum skill speed of 72% by having six skill objects of a particular type and six Sims using them. On a Skills property, however, this same combination will give you a speed of 118%.

The following table provides you with the approximate real-life time it takes to complete one skill point at full speed. Thanks goes to Naz for providing the information.

Skill Level Time at 118% Speed
0.00 - 0.99 4 minutes, 30 seconds
1.00 - 1.99 9 minutes
2.00 - 2.99 13 minutes, 30 seconds
3.00 - 3.99 18 minutes
4.00 - 4.99 22 minutes, 30 seconds
5.00 - 5.99 27 minutes
6.00 - 6.99 31 minutes, 30 seconds
7.00 - 7.99 36 minutes
8.00 - 8.99 40 minutes, 30 seconds
9.00 - 9.99 45 minutes
10.00 - 10.99 1 hour, 27 minutes
11.00 - 11.99 1 hour, 6 minutes
12.00 - 12.99 1 hour, 15 minutes
13.00 - 13.99 1 hour, 24 minutes
14.00 - 14.99 1 hour, 33 minutes
15.00 - 15.99 1 hour, 42 minutes
16.00 - 16.99 1 hour, 51 minutes
17.00 - 17.99 2 hours
18.00 - 18.99 2 hours, 9 minutes
19.00 - 19.99 2 hours, 18 minutes
20.00 - 20.99 2 hours, 27 minutes

Skill Decay

Your skills will start decaying once you have reached 10.00 points total in all skills combined. The rate at which your skills decay is affected by a few main factors. If your Sim is dead, the rate of decay is almost doubled. The rate of decay also increases with the total number of skill points you have earned. Someone with 20 points in both logic and cooking will see faster decay than someone with just 20 points in cooking. There is also a slight bit of randomness involved in the rate of decay, so it may not be at a consistant speed.

Skill decay is paused when you are actively learning a skill so it is not working against the points you are earning. Any skills you are not actively learning are still subject to decay. Skills will also not decay while you are offline.

Skill Locks

In a world of skilling, motive deterioration, and skill decay, it is often difficult to keep your skills in tip-top order. Thanks to the variable skill lock system, however, you no longer have to worry about having to skill every five minutes just to keep your tango, headspin, or break dance. Instead, you can be spending your time red and having a blast, and not have to worry about your skills decaying.

When you first create your Sim, you start off with twenty skill locks. You are allotted additional skill locks approximately every 7 days (See the chart at the bottom of this page), which can be used to lock additional skill points which you may obtain. When you lock a skill, decay does not occur from the highest point of that skill downward. For example, if you locked charisma 5.00 in your Sim Page, you can go up to 5.99 and experience no decay from that point down. If you go to 6.00, however, it can still decay back down to 5.99, where it will stop.


Sim Page Showing Skill Locks

Locked skills appear in red, whereas unlocked skills appear in blue. Because the skill locks are variable, you don't necessarily have to lock an entire skill. You can choose to lock so many of one, so many of another, or whatever your preference may be. Something which should be noted, however, is that you must lock in an ascending order. For example, you can't just lock at 7.00 of a skill, but you must lock everything before it, so 6.00, 5.00, and so on.

Clicking up to a certain skill in the indicator bars, will lock the skill up to the point you click. By clicking the skill bar at a lower point than what is already locked, you can unlock the skill.

Approximately every 7 days, you receive a new skill lock with which you can lock another skill point. Whether you use them all or only lock what you need is up to you. Below is a chart of what age your Sim has to be in order to receive another skill lock point.

Skill Locks Chart

Sim Age Number of Locks
0 20
7 21
14 22
21 23
28 24
35 25
42 26
49 27
56 28
63 29
70 30
77 31
84 32
91 33
98 34
105 35
112 36
119 37
126 38
133 39
147 40
154 41
161 42
168 43
175 44
182 45
189 46
196 47
203 48
210 49
217 50
224 51
231 52
238 53
245 54
252 55
259 56
266 57
273 58
280 59
287 60
294 61
301 62
308 63
315 64
322 65
329 66
336 67
343 68
350 69
357 70
Sim Age Number of Locks
364 71
371 72
378 73
385 74
392 75
399 76
406 77
413 78
420 79
427 80
434 81
441 82
448 83
455 84
462 85
469 86
476 87
483 88
490 89
497 90
504 91
511 92
518 93
525 94
532 95
539 96
546 97
553 98
560 99
567 100
574 101
581 102
588 103
595 104
602 105
609 106
616 107
623 108
630 109
637 110
644 111
651 112
658 113
665 114
672 115
679 116
686 117
693 118
700 119
707 120