Traits are special 'traits' that you can pick when generating a new character. Ingame they work like mutations, and share user interface space with mutations. In the game code, all traits are in fact mutations, with a special internal value included making it clear they are a trait.
Traits are split between positive ones, which cost points and help your character, and negative ones, which give you points and hinder your character. The right selection of traits can mean the difference between a living survivor and a rotting corpse.
Several starting professions also grant you special profession traits which are based on the characters' career before the Cataclysm and grant you access to equipment and places that you might not otherwise be able to attain among other bonuses.
Some starting scenarios in 0.C (Cooper) also give you different choices of starting traits. For example in the Challenge-Lab scenario, you can choose several mutations, like for example Gills, as a starting mutation. This because your character was experimented upon before the apocalypse. Or, you might even be a clone of ... something. These starting mutations count as traits, so they cannot be removed with purifier, and do not count for threshold mutations.
Differences between traits and mutations
- Traits can only be picked at character creation. Not gotten later in the game, you can however get mutations that have the same effect as traits.
- Traits are very hard to get rid off, and only in rare occasions, involving thresholds you can sometimes change them.
- Some traits cannot be gained after character creation at all. Like the various profession traits.
- You can gain traits back by using purifier, while normally it only makes you lose traits.
Changing starting traits