Pillars of Eternity Wiki
Pillars of Eternity Wiki
Skill Arcana.png

Arcana is an active skill in Pillars of Eternity II: Deadfire.


Items in italics are quoted directly from the game.

Arcana covers knowledge of all things magical that do not deal with metaphysics. In combat, it can be used to increase the power level of scrolls.


Arcana has the following effects:

  • Determines the maximum level of scrolls that can be used by a character. Unlike Lore in Pillars of Eternity, this is a direct comparison. The required Arcana level is shown on each scroll.
  • Increases the power level of all used scrolls by Arcana level x 0.5 (or 0.5 per point)

As with all other skills, Arcana can be checked during conversations and scripted interactions.

Scrolls power level[]

Each power level in scrolls has the following effect (where applicable):

  • +5% damage.
  • +5% healing done.
  • +5% duration (some exclusions, such as "per" intervals).
  • +0.25 Penetration - rounded up to the nearest 0.1, though this may be for display only.
  • +0.5 bounces - rounded down to nearest integer (truncated). Note that no tooltip is displayed for this bonus.
  • +1 Accuracy - rounded down to nearest integer (truncated).

So, at 10 Arcana, the power level for scrolls would be 5 (excluding other potential power-level altering factors). At power level 5, the scroll gains +25% damage, +25% duration, +1.25 Penetration, etc. Note that power levels are rounded down to the nearest whole number, so a character with Arcana 3 would add 1.5 power levels to used scrolls, but the calculation will round this down to 1.

Power level scaling can be overridden on a per-item basis, meaning the above bonuses may not apply for every item! These figures are given as a guideline to the power level scaling values of most items.

All bonuses only apply to the scrolls direct effects, so if a scroll were to grant the caster Accuracy (for example), it would not gain an added bonus from power levels. The bonus only applies to the accuracy of attacks made by the scrolls casted ability, likewise with Penetration.

Scroll power level bonuses
Power level Bonuses to scrolls
Actual Rounded Damage / Duration / Healing Penetration Bounces Accuracy
0 0 0 - - - -
1 0.5
2 1.0 1 +5% +0.25 (0.3) +0.5 (0) +1
3 1.5
4 2.0 2 +10% +0.5 +1.0 (1) +2
5 2.5
6 3.0 3 +15% +0.75 (0.8) +1.5 (1) +3
7 3.5
8 4.0 4 +20% +1.0 +2.0 (2) +4
9 4.5
10 5.0 5 +25% +1.25 (1.3) +2.5 (2) +5
11 5.5
... ... ... ... ... ... ...

The above table outlines the bonuses received to scrolls at a specific power level (and in turn Arcana level). This assumes no other factors are influencing the power level for scrolls, but the effects should be the same either way.

Initial bonuses[]

The following bonuses are applied as a result of a character's class and background.

Class bonuses:
Chanter +2
Paladin +2
Priest +2
Wizard +2
Background bonuses:
Apprentice* +2
Mystic +1
Scholar +1
Scientist +1


Passive effects[]

unlimited – obtained during gameplay

Name Modifier Duration
Geirvard's Training +1 Permanent


unlimited – bonus while equipped

Type Item Enchantment Modifier
Gauntlets The Left Hand of the Obscured [FS] Handler of the Arcane +3
Gloves Firethrower's Gloves Spellbending +1
Ring Chameleon's Touch Versatile +1 (as Wizard)


unlimited – bonus while equipped to either self or party

Pet Target Modifier
Animancy Cat Self +1

Consumable items[]

unlimited – for the user for a duration (sometimes only in combat)

Type Item Modifier Duration
Unguent Arcanist's Balm +2 120 sec

Notable uses[]

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Type Item Enchantment Stat Formula
Arbalest Spearcaster Rune Bolts Ranged accuracy (Arcana * 0.5) + 5
Arcane Bolts
Elemental Bolts