Currently the only way to increase stats is to get lucky with mutation. So, I started thinking about ways that they could be increased in game. I wanted to keep it simple and intuitive, while not encouraging “grinding”. This is the best I came up with:
Every skill has one or two governing stats. For example, bashing weapons would be strength, dodging would be dexterity, mechanics could be intelligence or intelligence\strength. Raising a skill by one will give you one point towards the stat for the skill. In the case of a skill with two stats, it would be half a point towards both.
Now, I would imagine strength would be the easiest to raise, followed by dexterity, with intelligence and perception very difficult to raise. To simulate that (and provide an easy way to adjust balance) you would gain a new stat point when you reach a total different for each stat. I’m thinking 8-10 for strength, 10-15 for dex, and maybe 20+ for int and perception.
So, in practice this would mean that if you raised your bashing skill, for example, from 0-8 you would gain a point of strength. However, to raise int a point you would need to learn 20~ levels worth of crafting skills(or whatever skills are assigned to Int). So a character would be unlikely to gain more than 1 or 2 points of int during the game.
It seems pretty intuitive that smashing things makes you stronger, and dodging things makes you more agile, and so forth. It kinda encourages grinding I feel, but everyone grinds skills anyways. It would reward specialized characters with stat gains.
A small note on this; skills raised from books or at chargen should not lead to stat increases. This would give books a small drawback which may or may not be a good thing.
As always, fell free to provide criticism or add on to it.