Leveling and why it sucks

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Marek15

Regular
And also make the offsprings inherit a big portion of their parents stats !
A more elegant and immersive solution would be to have a mentoring mechanic.
One party member is assigned the role of mentor and one as pupil. Each day the pupil passively earns skill xp based on the difference between them and the mentor. Plus some percentage of the skill xp earned by the mentor is copied to the pupil as they learn by example.
 

Helstrom

Recruit
So after the last update I had to remove a mod I was using called experience multiplier, after removing it I can't believe how bad leveling still is in vanilla and can't stand it. The way it scales and especially how learning rate decrease for all skills is ridiculous and needs some tuning. Not that it matters but here is what I would suggest:

1. Each attribute group learning rate should be independent and only go down as those skill are leveled, leveling vigor skills should not affect learning rate of endurance skills etc.

2. The beginning is balanced nice but falls apart at about level 12-15 and the grind is near impossible. 10 years into a game and my character barely has the skills of a recruit in a FEW skills only.

3. Make Attributes do something other than learning rate. Make vigor increase damage by 1% for each level and top out at 10% for example.

4. Balance experience gains from level12+, gets too hard at the high levels. I have 705 hours in this game and I have never maxed out or even come close to maxing out a skill. Maybe 200 at best!

Otherwise can't play this game without x5 experience multiplier
I appreciate you trying to put some better ideas to this. The only way your going to get your great ideas implemented, or others here, is if they stop trying to make it a system that provides little reward while punishing the player.

I think I understand their intent, maybe. If I am right, they are trying to make it so we the players can't be a god of all things and that offspring is something we embrace. The thing is the skills do not add that much, some are just useless at this time. I hope they fix that last part. My point is the punishment is not needed. If they added a slider to the players in settings which dictates how many skills you can acquire, I am under the impression it would be maxed for all first playthroughs and most would leave it at max. If not only because it is a sandbox and we all want to build our castle how we like.
 

Akka

Sergeant
The idea behind the leveling system is not bad, but it's completely unbalanced and it needs some more tweaks to adds character to it.

I'd say the changes needed are :

- First and foremost, get entirely rid of the "level up slows down xp". Skills already requires more and more xp for each new rank, no need to compound with another layer of increase. It's completely pointless.

- Adds some sort of secondary effect to attributes beyond just increasing skill. Vigor should add damage, Constitution should add HP and so on.

- I feel there is just far too many perks. It becomes hard to know what the actual rules are when there is literally hundred of possible way to alter them. All the "add 5 % damage to units with X weapon" and so on should be removed, only iconic perks should be kept, and only a few per skill. Maybe bake in some additional effect in the skill themselves.

- Lastly, of course, balancing.
 
I agree with most of your points @Akka
- level up slows down must go this is arbitrary player harrassment with not a single good point about it :wink:
- secondary effects to attributes is correct as well

with your third, I disagree. The number of perks is o.k. and it is fine to have a choice but the inherent sickness is that not all skill level up equally or some require circumstances you either avoid or can only do in late game and then your level hurts.

I am talking
- 'escape from captivity' -> I do not want to get caught in first place and will reload
- 'heal wounded soldiers at settlement' -> I want a minimum of wounded soldiers anyways and play accordingly
- 'hit with thrown weapons' -> they are not good and per battle you only got about 3-5 of them. And if you miss, you won't even get XP. It is far easier to fire about 30 arrows in battle and hit something
- 'build siege equipment' -> I can only do that if I am a vassal which happens in mid to late game
- skill leadership -> can do once I have ridiculous amounts in stewardship and high morale kicks in or am vassal again and can have armies
- Athletics -> game does not encourage me to run around by foot. Riding is superior in any regard as on foot I am swarmed and slain or my map speed level decreases, which I don't want either.

Another illness is that the player gets stuff he cannot use -> captain/governor skills. We can neither appoint our main character to captain as he is always member of no group or make him governor making many perks look good on the paper but useless in reality.
 

AndrewArt

Sergeant
- level up slows down must go this is arbitrary player harrassment with not a single good point about it :wink:
yes, still waiting for improvements...
- First and foremost, get entirely rid of the "level up slows down xp". Skills already requires more and more xp for each new rank, no need to compound with another layer of increase. It's completely pointless.
it is really bad... The only thing an attribute gives you is increased exp gain. But leveling up also takes that away... it's a completely unrewarding system that I wish to see go as soon as possible. You don't even get that many attribute points to begin with. They can lower the amount of exp bonus an attribute gives, but make it a permanent thing... that way you can either apply all attribute points in one set of skills and get decent leveling speed even at later levels, but that would of course make it very slow to level other skills if you dont have attributes/focus points, or you can play a jack of all trades character that can invest attributes in every set of skills but leveling will be fairly slow, and chances are you won't reach the 300 perk in anything too soon. Really hope for some improvements in this.

If an attribute gave 0.5 leveling speed that would be ok too, 2 attributes =1x. And every focus point give 1x as well, for maximum 10x. With the amount of exp required at later levels it will still be slow later on. Just give less attributes/focus points at the beginning if you want to, start everything at 0 initially and gain a few points through choices... It can be balanced easily if they just see the faults in the current system, they can make a better one... If I had a permanent 10x in 3 skills, or a permanent 2-3x exp gain in all the skills, I'd much prefer that system personally.

Hard caps are really bad. It also makes companions not be able to level because they have reached their hard-cap ever since you hired them :/ It makes 0 sense.
 
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rpg mechanics in bannerlord are so badly designed they actively annoy me.
Attributes only increase learning limit which is already done by focus points, basically doing nothing except artificially limiting what skills you can choose to increase together for synergy.
trade + smithing as an example, these 2 skills logically fit together. make stuff and use trade to sell for higher profit but being put under different attributes means it costs more points to max them both.

they literally have no reason to exist as a mechanic and the devs could just delete them and increase max FP to 8 or make each FP give more limit.

Then theres the perks, it feels like theres too many of them, most feel either like filler with too small bonuses to care or just disable features artificially like buying settlements.
more importantly they cost nothing and you dont get to choose your own, youre forced to choose between 2 perks you dont really care about that are chosen for you and are mutually exclusive. what if i want my character to be a specialist in 1 skill and have both at the cost of being alot worse at everything else?

What id do is completely untie skills from attributes and just have 8FP instead of 5 then remove perks from skills and tie them to attributes instead so you can basically focus in any combination of skills you want without any arbitrary restrictions while making attributes basically like the special stats of fallout.
every level up you get to pick 1 perk and every attribute increase unlocks better perks making leveling actually feel rewarding instead of a punishing grind for a meaningless increase to a skill and a perk that doesnt do enough to care except for a few that do too much to the point you feel pressured to grind for in the first place.
 

redmark

Squire
Attributes only increase learning limit which is already done by focus points, basically doing nothing except artificially limiting what skills you can choose to increase together for synergy.
trade + smithing as an example, these 2 skills logically fit together. make stuff and use trade to sell for higher profit but being put under different attributes means it costs more points to max them both.
If anything, Attributes should have a greater influence on learning rate (it's currently much less per point than per focus point), and/or limit how many focus points you can assign - for example, if you have Intelligence 1, you can't assign 5 focus points (more like Warband).

Trading and smithing don't particularly fit together. One is buying and selling for a profit, the other is making stuff - and selling crafted stuff doesn't touch trade at all, as you didn't buy it so don't 'profit'. But people take this too literally (and over-emphasise the learning rate slowdown). But fundamentally, it's not very different to how it was done in Warband either, with skills limited to a proportion of the value of an attribute.
 

AnandaShanti

Sergeant Knight at Arms
What I further don't like, regarding attributes, is the redundancy and disparity between the attribute skill sets.

Vigor: Redundant and near useless: You can 1hko guys with 0 melee skill. Why go for over 200 by investing attributes here? In unmodded game getting more then 1 weapon above 200 is a life long process. Polearm is so much more powerful and useful the other 2 can't even compare.

Control: Redundant and high disparity: Bow is good, really good, Xbow is.... not as good.... throwing is.... fun for RP stuff? Getting more then 1 of these is just not attractive or useful at all and the benefit of Bow is so massive over the other 2 it's silly. Even the passive perks of bow dwarf those of the other 2.

Endurance: Riding is the fastest skill in the game(if you use a bow), athletics is..... a lot slower :sad: If you fight on horse you will be getting riding skill EXP TO LEVEL UP no matter what you do, so you might as well make sure you some skill too. Riding and athletics are both useful with good perks, smithing is a YMMV thing, I skip it entirely unless testing a change, but if fixed it would be a great skill too.

Cunning (lol): This one is almost good! Scouting is a decently leveling passive skill with some great payoffs for the MC! Tactics is pretty slow and situational, but does have other goodies mixed in and simulated battles will come up eventually. Roguery is super slow and a mix of okay perks and very questionable perks. IME you will get 275+ scouting if you build Cunning in not to long of game time, tactics and roguery will still be in the low hundreds though.... they very very slow even with 10 cunning. The name makes me giggle every time.

Social: 1 diamond, 2 turds. Leadership is super useful but requires armies (or large party) to really build up. Charm is a useless pile of garbage.... when you get relations up you learn this skill that gives you slightly more relations up when your relations go up....wtf get this yo dog meme skill out of my game!
I've done chars with and without charm and it makes no difference in the ease of anything. You might assume it does but you just haven't payed very close attention!
Trade is super slow and completely worthless if you are even slightly competent at building your warband and fighting. It's like throwing, only for RP game.

INT: Almost good! Steward will raise nicely, medicine and engineering are dead turtles being pushed by a snail, TOO SLOW. Medicine makes you do ***backwards stuff to raise it and engineering is currently useless IMO because no matter what you do it's still safer to just retreat you party and kill the garrison solo. Someday when they make siege good, engineer will be super good.

You can expect to gain 8 attributes via leveling in a game, so no matter what your starting choices you can max out one set to 10. That's not enough.

I really dislike the skills being lumped together and requiring attributes to reach the higher skill levels. I want to max only the skills that I actually want (and will actually raise), not 1 skill I want and 2 piles of garbage. It also doesn't fit with the clan role assignment. If I manage to build a clan mamber to have high INT they cannot be steward, engineer and Medic? That's stupid! Only the MC can do multiple roles, but you'll be level 25 before you blink and you medicine and engineering skills will be completely stunted forever.
 
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Shillslayer

Banned
I think the new leveling system is mostly fine. It has its pro's and con's compared to Warbands. What the Bannerlord system needs, I think, is better distribution of experience rates in terms of amount of time spent focusing on a particular skill vs on other skills. Some skills are much easier to level than others.
What also needs to be done, in my opinion, is the removal of weapon-type unique perks. It is of course thematically cool to "from the start" focus on a character that will prefer axes over swords, but the fact is that these weapon-type unique perk bonuses are miniscule, and the added flexibility of being able to realistically pick between two generalist perks will be appreciated by more players.
 

AndrewArt

Sergeant
What I further don't like, regarding attributes, is the redundancy and disparity between the attribute skill sets.

Vigor: Redundant and near useless: You can 1hko guys with 0 melee skill. Why go for over 200 by investing attributes here? In unmodded game getting more then 1 weapon above 200 is a life long process. Polearm is so much more powerful and useful the other 2 can't even compare.

Control: Redundant and high disparity: Bow is good, really good, Xbow is.... not as good.... throwing is.... fun for RP stuff? Getting more then 1 of these is just not attractive or useful at all and the benefit of Bow is so massive over the other 2 it's silly. Even the passive perks of bow dwarf those of the other 2.

Endurance: Riding is the fastest skill in the game(if you use a bow), athletics is..... a lot slower :sad: If you fight on horse you will be getting riding skill EXP TO LEVEL UP no matter what you do, so you might as well make sure you some skill too. Riding and athletics are both useful with good perks, smithing is a YMMV thing, I skip it entirely unless testing a change, but if fixed it would be a great skill too.

Cunning (lol): This one is almost good! Scouting is a decently leveling passive skill with some great payoffs for the MC! Tactics is pretty slow and situational, but does have other goodies mixed in and simulated battles will come up eventually. Roguery is super slow and a mix of okay perks and very questionable perks. IME you will get 275+ scouting if you build Cunning in not to long of game time, tactics and roguery will still be in the low hundreds though.... they very very slow even with 10 cunning. The name makes me giggle every time.

Social: 1 diamond, 2 turds. Leadership is super useful but requires armies (or large party) to really build up. Charm is a useless pile of garbage.... when you get relations up you learn this skill that gives you slightly more relations up when your relations go up....wtf get this yo dog meme skill out of my game!
I've done chars with and without charm and it makes no difference in the ease of anything. You might assume it does but you just haven't payed very close attention!
Trade is super slow and completely worthless if you are even slightly competent at building your warband and fighting. It's like throwing, only for RP game.

INT: Almost good! Steward will raise nicely, medicine and engineering are dead turtles being pushed by a snail, TOO SLOW. Medicine makes you do ***backwards stuff to raise it and engineering is currently useless IMO because no matter what you do it's still safer to just retreat you party and kill the garrison solo. Someday when they make siege good, engineer will be super good.

You can expect to gain 8 attributes via leveling in a game, so no matter what your starting choices you can max out one set to 10. That's not enough.

I really dislike the skills being lumped together and requiring attributes to reach the higher skill levels. I want to max only the skills that I actually want (and will actually raise), not 1 skill I want and 2 piles of garbage. It also doesn't fit with the clan role assignment. If I manage to build a clan mamber to have high INT they cannot be steward, engineer and Medic? That's stupid! Only the MC can do multiple roles, but you'll be level 25 before you blink and you medicine and engineering skills will be completely stunted forever.
I do agree... not only the leveling progression, but the perks need more work as well. I share the sentiment with weapon skills being useless because you can one-shot people no matter how much skill you have. The same goes for trading, after trading until 100 skill you already have all the money you need to start off so grinding until 300 would only be for RP purposes. Charm does indeed have TERRIBLE perks...

Leveling progression fix will help the system a lot... For Cunning, I feel like roguery will be nicely supported by tactics and scouting if you can actually level them up properly (tactics and roguery). Increased battle advantage = bandits surrendering/joining you more often right? And scouting = more speed on the map to catch bandit parties easier. That's really good.

I do agree that companions should be able to fulfill all roles just like the MC. Why have a high intellect companion... you need to have 3 to fulfill each role, which is NOT good... one high intellect companion should be enough, it would be also fun to have warriors in your party and not use everyone to fulfill 3 roles that 1 person can do.

Endurance to me seems like a good tree also if athlethics will level faster simply because it gives 2 endurance points and others... yeah throwing is more for roleplaying as well sadly (but can still be fun RPing that. Also crossbow seems decent to me, definitely better at low levels that bow at least - just try crossbow off a horse at the start, so easy compared to bow - easy to hit, and headshots are guaranteed kills on looters, and you level riding pretty fast doing that too).

I literally only try to get melee skills up to get the bonus hp for the troops, that's the only reason I would EVER try to level up Vigor. Good thing endurance gives vigor points too, otherwise it would be a real pain. Those 2 go very well together, but definitely for roleplay purposes.. they even give you 1 point in throwing. So yeah, that's the RP way, not the most efficient or best way, clearly
 

AnandaShanti

Sergeant Knight at Arms
I literally only try to get melee skills up to get the bonus hp for the troops
Me too, you can snag the 200 perks with just 5 fp though, I start with polearm and if the game actually goes so long without update/restart I go for 2 handed as well!

Also crossbow seems decent to me
They are, however you're stuck with just the light Xbow on horseback until a fairly high perk and you can't shoot behind you as you ride as much as with bow, makes it not useful for mounted combat, particularly kitting infantry blobs and popping em as the conga at you.
 

AndrewArt

Sergeant
Me too, you can snag the 200 perks with just 5 fp though, I start with polearm and if the game actually goes so long without update/restart I go for 2 handed as well!


They are, however you're stuck with just the light Xbow on horseback until a fairly high perk and you can't shoot behind you as you ride as much as with bow, makes it not useful for mounted combat, particularly kitting infantry blobs and popping em as the conga at you.
definitely most effective against the conga xD

I was about to add this: I wish every perk tree had more thought-out perks, especially the combat perks need that... the last perk is useless at every combat tree, it feels like the devs were totally uninspired (or in a rush?, because you simply don't need those stats they provide ever. The two-handed perk that makes you able to deflect arrows would be a cool end-game perk, and every combat skill should have something special. A bow could unlock FIRE ARROWS, now that would be cool and special (to deal more damage to siege engines? Not that useful but still more useful than the end perk we have now) (also we already have fire ballista bolts, so why not. Maybe crossbows can get into that firey action as well). I tend to agree now that there are too many perks, and there are too many filler perks with no real purpose. If the leveling system went until something like 200, and we had less but more impactful perks, I think it would be better... or at least make a hard cap at 300 and make every end perk unlockable at 200 (with bonuses growing up to 300). I don't see why we can level-up beyond 300, seems very unneeded.
 
If anything, Attributes should have a greater influence on learning rate (it's currently much less per point than per focus point), and/or limit how many focus points you can assign - for example, if you have Intelligence 1, you can't assign 5 focus points (more like Warband).

Why though?
Attributes dont need to exist because you have 2 mechanics doing the same thing, no one would notice a meaningful difference if they were deleted next patch and numbers tweaked to be the same as with them.

In warband it actually would matter since they were designed and implemented alot better and actually did something.
Though they were still flawed even then since they forced only 2 major character types with anything else just being a hybrid compromise.
One being make your character as strong as possible with max str+agi able to solo armies and having party skills at 10 with companions.
The other being int cha build with 14/10+4 bonus from your char having party skills and then just have a bigger army thanks to leadership to make up for having a weak combat character.

Trading and smithing don't particularly fit together. One is buying and selling for a profit, the other is making stuff - and selling crafted stuff doesn't touch trade at all, as you didn't buy it so don't 'profit'. But people take this too literally (and over-emphasise the learning rate slowdown). But fundamentally, it's not very different to how it was done in Warband either, with skills limited to a proportion of the value of an attribute.

It does lol, i just tested it on a new character with the console command and no perks and the difference between trade 1 and 300 gave me about 30% more profit for the first 1h sword you can craft. 196vs254/275/351 with appraiser perk and both appraiser/artisan smith.

Trade skill reduces the price modifier penalty and works just like warband, youre thinking of the specific way you get xp for trading.
which is another problem i have with bannerlord, I love that you can get xp without having to grind battles or quests and get quest/kill/partysharexp but now you have to grind even harder if you just want to increase 1 specific skill since there arent enough ways of increasing them now that you cant put xp into any skill you want anymore.
 
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Midnitewolf

Sergeant
I got to admit, I am not a fan of the leveling system. There is just so much wrong with it on so many levels. One of the big issues is what active give you XP.

For example. If I sit stationary on a horse and hit and enemy with an Arrow, I tend to get more riding XP then I do if I am actually racing my horse around at full speed shooting enemies with arrows. Also the XP I get with the Bow seems to be tied to the damage I do with the bow, not the complexity of the shot. For example if I am racing straight at an enemy running toward me and hit him point blank, I get tons more riding and box XP than if I am ridding full speed away from an enemy and hit them running away from me at 100 yards distance. Athletics is similarly borked. I can run around all day in a battle and get zero XP, in fact you only get XP if you are actually hit and enemy. Also just standing still hitting an enemy gets you like 2xp, however running toward and enemy and hitting them might get you 200xp so again velocity of movement seems to be the determining factor, not actually fighting in melee. There is just so much wrong with that system it isn't even funny.

Then there is the actual leveling. You only get 1 attribute point ever what, 4 levels. That means you can get a max of 10 points I think? That would be all well and good I guess but considering the only way to get a high level of skill is to have 10 attribute points in a given stat your kind of screwed. For example 5 attribute points and 5 focus points in a given skill tops out at around 100-150 skill or something like that before you start reaching caps. Even 10 attribute and 5 focus skills caps at around 250. With only 10 attribute points in 40 levels to spread over what is it 8 stats?, your going to be lucky to be able to break 100 skill in more than a few areas.

Personally I think the hard and soft caps need to disappear and you should be able to max out your skills eventually even if you only have 1 attribute and 1 focus point in a skill. There absolutely shouldn't be a hard cap, ever. Also you should probably get at least an attribute point every other level rather than every 4 levels.

The good news is, none of this is really an issue because wait for it.....MODS. Yep, Taleworlds doesn't need to do a thing, if you don't like the leveling, just mod the game so that the leveling pace suits you. That is the amazing thing about his game, the capability to do this. Personally I have my game modded to give me one Attribute and 1 Focus point per level. I think I also have another mod that increases the skill gain a bit too. Both combined and I seem to have a good leveling rate. At level 30 I think I have 3 skills at 100, 2 more at 150, one at 200 and one at 255 which seems about right at level 30.
 

redmark

Squire
Then there is the actual leveling. You only get 1 attribute point ever what, 4 levels. That means you can get a max of 10 points I think? That would be all well and good I guess but considering the only way to get a high level of skill is to have 10 attribute points in a given stat your kind of screwed. For example 5 attribute points and 5 focus points in a given skill tops out at around 100-150 skill or something like that before you start reaching caps. Even 10 attribute and 5 focus skills caps at around 250. With only 10 attribute points in 40 levels to spread over what is it 8 stats?, your going to be lucky to be able to break 100 skill in more than a few areas.

Personally I think the hard and soft caps need to disappear and you should be able to max out your skills eventually even if you only have 1 attribute and 1 focus point in a skill. There absolutely shouldn't be a hard cap, ever. Also you should probably get at least an attribute point every other level rather than every 4 levels.

The good news is, none of this is really an issue because wait for it.....MODS. Yep, Taleworlds doesn't need to do a thing, if you don't like the leveling, just mod the game so that the leveling pace suits you. That is the amazing thing about his game, the capability to do this. Personally I have my game modded to give me one Attribute and 1 Focus point per level. I think I also have another mod that increases the skill gain a bit too. Both combined and I seem to have a good leveling rate. At level 30 I think I have 3 skills at 100, 2 more at 150, one at 200 and one at 255 which seems about right at level 30.
Those vanilla figures aren't accurate. Are you looking at the 'learning limit' defined by the green area? It's not the true cap (which is a bit past it). 10 Attribute + 5 focus points caps at over 300. Formula is ( Attribute * 14 ) - 10 + ( 40 * Focus Points).

Currently, at level 25 I've got two skills in the 240s (two of the easiest passive skills which suit my playstyle) - both on attributes of 5, with a displayed 'learning limit' of 190, learning rates now declining rapidly, but will see me through to a skill of 260 (annoyingly, spending another attribute point on either is pointless for perks as it takes them to 274; unless I can spend two, to get past 275 and the last perk in those trees). Another is at 211, attribute 6 ('learning limit' 200), that has still got a learning rate of 3.60 (which will now decline rapidly, but I won't reach the cap until 274).

Two other skills in those 5 or 6 attribute sets have 5 FPs but are more grindy; another four skills in those attribute areas I should get 3-4 focus points each, so enough to reach the 175/200 perks. In all, if I play the character to a conclusion, I should get four or five skills to 250+, and the other four or five more grindy skills (in the same three attribute areas) to at least 125-175.

So, depending on what perk trees you want to max out - you need a 7 attribute (+5 fps) to reach 275 (288 ), and 8 to reach 300 (302). You don't 'need' 10 in anything.
 

AnandaShanti

Sergeant Knight at Arms
Why though?
Attributes dont need to exist because you have 2 mechanics doing the same thing, no one would notice a meaningful difference if they were deleted next patch and numbers tweaked to be the same as with them.
I agree.

If anything, Attributes should have a greater influence on learning rate (it's currently much less per point than per focus point), and/or limit how many focus points you can assign - for example, if you have Intelligence 1, you can't assign 5 focus points (more like Warband).
Hmmm, so in warband you level up and by building up your attributes you gain the right to raise their skills with SP, but you gain the skill immediately.
In banner lord you level up, invest your FP and attributes and gain the right to raise a skill.... but you don't get anything on the spot, idduno to me it's just too many things going on to let you just have skills. IMO the point of a "you do the thing you get the skill" system is to not have all fussing around character sheets, I think they kinda ****ed it up tbh.

What might be interesting is if attributes represented you characters "genetics" so to speak and instead of gaining them they just were there from char gen and had strong bonus to a skill sett learning rate and limit, but didn't prevent a char from maxing a skill with just fp. Like a char with 5 INT can have extra fast learning INT skills and not need all 5 fp to max those skills, but they could still invest 5 fp in other skill they just had 2 attributes in and max them, albeit much slower. I'd be okay with that.

So, depending on what perk trees you want to max out - you need a 7 attribute (+5 fps) to reach 275 (288 ), and 8 to reach 300 (302). You don't 'need' 10 in anything.
It's treu but many skills have the 275 perk that keeps growing until 330, so going all in is pretty good for things like uncanny insight on scouting or the leadership one.
 
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