Star Wars: The Old Republic has a plethora of Crew Skills available to the player. These skills expand the Companion system featured in the game, as well as rewarding player with rare and valuable items. The system provides additional incentives to befriend your companions. Companion influence level largely affects the successes or failures in the automatic Crew Skill missions you send companions on. Influence also affects rewards from these missions.
Players only receive a maximum of 3 Crew Skill slots, one for each category of skill. These categories are gathering, crafting, and mission. If you’re seeking to engage with the Crew Skill system, deciding which skills to choose is important. It’s also wise to pick skills which synergize well with each other. To help these players out, we’ve compiled a ranking of all the Crew Skills, ranked from worst to best and separated into categories, as well as which skills synergize well with others.
Locations of Crew Skill Trainers
Imperial Crew Skill Trainer:
Republic Crew Skill Trainer:
Crew Skill trainers can be found most conveniently on each faction’s home fleet. They are additionally located on the factions’ capital worlds, however the faction fleets act more as main hubs, so it’s more likely for players to visit them.
On the Imperial fleet, they are located on the bottom right section of Vaiken Spacedock, indicated by the diamond icons on your map. Meanwhile, the Republic fleet places them on the opposite side, up on the top left.
After visiting a trainer, speak to them to get a codex entry explaining their skill. If you wish to adopt their skill, select that option in the menu which pops up. Afterwards, you can open up your Crew Skill menu to see which skills you have, your companion influence levels, and how trained you are in each skill. This also allows you to begin sending your companions on Crew Skill missions.
SWTOR: The Best Crew Skills
We’ve broken the crew skills in Star Wars: The Old Republic down into three main categories. Within each category, we’ve ranked the skills from what we think are the worst to the best.
Gathering Crew Skills, Ranked Worst to Best
Without further ado, let’s get into the rankings.
- Synergies: Cybertech, Any
- Possible Rewards: Credits, Cybertech Schematics, Ship Upgrades, Challenge Mission Objects
Slicing is the SWTOR equivalent of KoTOR‘s Security skill. It focuses on lockpicking and computer hacking. As this is a Gathering skill, you’ll be spending a lot of time attempting to hack safes and computer consoles. The skill is primarily tech focused, and your rewards fit this theme. You can rack up a good amount of credits, but not nearly as many as other skills. Overall, the best reason to pick Slicing is because of the occasional shortcuts in Flashpoints which become available to those trained in the skill.
- Synergies: Armormech, Armstech, Cybertech
- Rewards: Tech Scraps, Materials for its Synergies
Scavenging is all about reducing, reusing, and recycling. You’ll want to look out for junk piles, as they’ll yield this skill’s primary rewards. There are no particularly special rewards or abilities for Scavengers, like Artifice’s unique items or Slicing’s shortcuts. That said, the rewards you do get are very useful for the skill’s Synergies. If you’re a non-force class looking to craft powerful arms, armor, and augments, Scavenging isn’t a bad choice.
- Synergies: Artifice, Synthweaving
- Rewards: Artifacts, Crystals
Archaeology is good for force classes looking to attain more lightsaber customization or any class looking to make credits. The crystals gathered by this class cannot be attained by any other means, which makes them particularly valuable items on the Galactic Trade Network. This makes Archaeology the best skill for credit acquisition. As well, these crystals can be inserted into lightsabers and blasters (depending on the type of crystal), changing their appearance. Players who value personalization will find Archaeology a useful Crew Skill.
- Synergies: Biochem
- Rewards: Medical Supplies, Chemical Compounds, Healing Items
We’ve included Bioanalysis as the number 1 spot here because of its synergy. Bioanalysis is particularly useful for the single best Crew Skill in the game: Biochem. We’ll cover that skill in more depth when we reach the Crafting Skills section. However, the ability to create limitless healing items in great quantities is a benefit that cannot be overstated. Normally, keeping track of how many healing items you hold is a heavy consideration, especially in high-level content such as Flashpoints and Operations. Bioanalysis, and Biochem with it, allows you to skip this worry by crafting your own refillable healing items. This power is great for any character, though it is almost essential for healers to utilize.
Mission Crew Skills, Ranked Worst to Best
- Synergies: Armstech, Any
- Rewards: Design Schematics for Crafting, Researched Compounds, Companion gifts
Investigation is based on finding designs for crafting items. Therefore, it can be useful when combined with Crafting Skills, allowing you to manufacture a wider variety of items. However, while this skill is a benefit if you’re in need of schematics, the skill is not required to acquire them. The best use of Investigation is to combine it with Armstech, as you will receive materials to create top-of-the-line blasters. Obviously, though, this will not be very useful for Force-users, and artifact level weapons can just be acquired from high-level content such as Operations and Flashpoints.
#3: Underworld Trading
- Synergies: Armormech, Cybertech, Synthweaving
- Rewards: Equipment Crafting Materials, Companion Gifts
Underworld Trading is good for acquiring a lot of crafting materials. This is more generally useful than Investigation, as this skill dishes out materials for more varied items. You’ll receive the means of crafting armor, weapons, ship upgrades, grenades, and implants. These implants in particular are noteworthy, as they provide a plethora of buffs which many high-level builds hinge on. Players who will find this skill most useful are those wanting to focus on SWTOR‘s crafting system while not committing too hard to one specific aspect of it.
#2: Treasure Hunting
- Synergies: Artifice
- Rewards: Credits, Gemstones, Companion Gifts
Treasure hunting is the path to riches. Not only do the Crew Missions for this skill dish out credits as basic rewards, but they also give you materials for the Artifice skill. As said before, Artifice allows you to craft rare items which go for a hefty price on the Galactic Trade Network. Players in need of credits (so basically all players) will want to make use of this skill. Additionally, Treasure Hunting opens up more opportunities for players interested in the level of customization offered to those who choose Artifice.
- Synergies: Biochem
- Rewards: Medical Supplies, Alignment Boosts, Companion Gifts
In addition to giving the player boosts to their Dark Side or Light Side alignment, this is another skill placed at number 1 for its synergy with Biochem. Diplomacy’s mission rewards are mostly crafting materials for the healing items available to practitioners of Biochem. We discussed in the Bioanalysis section that Biochem is the single most useful and beneficial Crew Skill in the game. For players looking to get the most use out of that particular skill, they should pick Bioanalysis and Diplomacy for their other 2 skill slots.
Crafting Crew Skills, Ranked Worst to Best
➡️ Creates: Blasters
Armstech isn’t a bad skill, nor is any in the Crafting category. Unfortunately, there’s a pretty narrow space for Armstech to be particularly useful. This skill most benefits DPS blaster-wielding classes. If you want to maximize your abilities to manufacture powerful firearms, this is the Crew Skill for you. However, much like the next 2 Crafting Skills, the weapons available to craft aren’t meaningfully better than those you’ll find in high-level content. Since every character only gets up to 3 skill slots, you’re much better off picking skills which give particularly rare or unique items.
➡️ Creates: Blaster-User Armor
Armormech and Synthweaving’s placements on this list are interchangeable. The usefulness of either one chiefly depends on which class you’re playing. Force-users will find more use out of Synthweaving, while Blaster-wielders will gravitate more towards Armormech. Both of these skills are based on crafting whichever variety of armor your class uses. We’ve placed the armor-based Crafting Skills so low for the same reason why Armstech is where it is. The primary reason for focusing on the Crew Skill system is to create high-level gear for high-level activities. If you can find equipment in high-level content that’s just as good as that which you can craft, why waste your slots? That said, the armor skills aren’t necessarily bad, per se, it’s just that the skills coming after them create much more unique and valuable items.
➡️ Creates: Force-User Armor
As said before, Synthweaving and Armormech are interchangeable on this list. If you’re a blaster class, you’ll want Armormech. If you’re a Force class, pick Synthweaving. It’s a bit neat to pick which robes or armor specifically you’d like to create for your character, however the Outfit System negates this benefit to the skills.
➡️ Creates: Implants, Droid Armor, Ship Upgrades, Speeders, Mods, Earpieces, Grenades
The ability to create the items available to Cybertech is very useful to any class. For example, this is the only method of acquiring items such as Ship Upgrades and Droid Armor via Crew Skills. None of the other skills give you these such items as rewards, and obtaining them from other sources is exceedingly rare. As well, the implants available to those who study Cybertech provide incredible bonuses which make high-level builds significantly easier to achieve.
➡️ Creates: Lightsabers, Mods, Color Crystals, Dye Modules
We’ve discussed Artifice a fair bit in this guide. This skill provides rare and unique items which are either never or not often found anywhere else in the game. Artifice is the easiest method to find color crystals, dye modules, and certain mods. As said before, these items fetch high prices on the GTN, but they’re also a nice bit of personalization not commonly found elsewhere.
➡️ Creates: Healing Items, Adrenal Buffs, Implants
As many have probably guessed (and as we’ve explicitly stated a couple times in this guide), we believe Biochem is the single best Crew Skill in SWTOR. The reasons for this have already been stated, so we won’t waste too much time repeating ourselves here. To recap, though, this skill lets you create refillable healing items, which are very useful for any character. As well, it lets you craft some Adrenals which give you and your potential team members nice buffs in combat, as well as useful Implants.
Join the High Ground
That’s gonna wrap it up for our ranking of SWTOR‘s best Crew Skills. We hope this list leaves you with a better idea of which skills would be most useful for you to study.
Have any questions about our ranking or anything more to say? Feel free to leave a comment below or share this article on social media to let us know. Also, be sure to subscribe to our newsletter for more Star Wars: The Old Republic guides and gaming content.
Happy gaming, and may the Force be with you!