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The Last Of Us Part 1 – Best Skills

The Last of Us Part I
Jack Bye Updated on by

It’s a tough world out there in The Last of Us Part 1. Between inhospitable terrain, cordyceps-infected zombies looking to take a bite out of you, and scavenging humans who’ll do anything to protect their territory, it’ll take everything you have to bring Joel and Ellie safely to the end of their journey, including a few choice skills. 

Thankfully, The Last of Us Part 1 contains Supplement items that make your trials that much easier. Supplements allow you to upgrade Joel’s Skills, significantly increasing your survivability. 

We’ll walk you through the best Skills to choose first in The Last of Us Part 1, getting you as ready as possible for the journey ahead. 

READ MORE: The Last of Us Part 1 Review 

The Last of Us Part 1 Best Skills – Maximum Health 

The Last of Us Part I Best Skills
Copyright Naughty Dog/SIE, captured by VideoGamer

There is no situation in The Last of Us Part 1 where you won’t be glad to have extra health. Even in the most seemingly tranquil surroundings, you know the threat of the infected could be lurking anywhere.


To increase Joel and Ellie’s survival odds, you’ll want to have as much health as possible. Choosing the Maximum Health upgrade allows you to take more damage before falling, whether that be from bullets, the infected, or anything else looking to put Joel in the ground. 

What’s more, Maximum Health can be upgraded twice. While taking both upgrades isn’t strictly necessary, it still comes highly recommended. Even if you decide one upgrade is enough for you, that extra health will very likely do the work of keeping you alive. 

Shiv Master 

Shiv Master can be the difference between a Clicker tearing you open and living to fight another day. What more incentive could you need to pick this skill? 

Shiv master allows you to use the Shiv item to instantly fend off clickers when they attempt to overpower you. What could easily be an instant death is quickly brushed off, giving you the chance to escape and reposition. 

If you upgrade this skill twice, the Shiv won’t break when fighting the Clicker off. This makes it all the more likely that you’ll always have a Shiv on hand when ambushed by a Clicker. 

This Skill upgrade might not be as universally useful as a Maximum Health upgrade, but you’ll be immensely thankful for it any time you fall prey to a Clicker. Given how far the infection has spread in The Last of Us Part 1, this will happen more often than you might expect. 

Listen Mode Distance 

The Last of Us Skills
Copyright Naughty Dog/SIE, captured by VideoGamer

For the vast majority of your time in The Last of Us Part 1, you aren’t going to be mowing down enemies with abandon. Joel and Ellie are almost always outnumbered and outmatched on their trip through this overgrown America. Slow, methodical movement is key. Planning, stealth, and acting at the right time will keep you alive.  

As a result, Listen Mode Distance is a far more valuable skill than any upgrade to your combat capabilities. This upgrade allows you to keep track of your enemies at a much further distance, preventing you from being surprised or getting stuck between enemy patrols.  

You don’t want to be anywhere near Clickers in The Last of Us Part 1. These infected foes will tear through you almost immediately. But their distinctive clicking sound gives them away, and Listen Mode Distance upgrades allow you to always be alert when a clicker is in the area. 

The Last Of Us Part 1 comes with plenty of Weapon Upgrades to patch up and improve your arsenal, but these Skill Upgrades will help you stay alive even when unarmed and outnumbered. This game isn’t about prioritizing strength, but survival, and these upgrades help you do just that.