Having just sabotaged a perfectly good attempt to finish an EASY run (Yes, I play on EASY -- I'm a pansy), I discovered the following:
- Skill loss is a flat amount.
- Skill loss is applied to all skills.
- Skill loss is not random.
- Skill loss is different for different skills!
- Piloting is affected -20% of a bar (-3 dodges)
- Engineering is affected -20% of a bar (-3 dodges)
- Gunnery is affected -20% of a bar (-13 shots)
- Shielding is affected -20% of a bar (-11 impacts)
- Repair is affected about -16% of a bar. (-3 repairs)
- Combat is affected -12.5% of a bar. (-1 kill)
Thus, if you had perfect skills (full yellow bar) it would take 10 deaths to empty out piloting, engineering, gunnery, and shielding. It would take 12 deaths to empty out repair, and it would take 16 deaths to empty out combat.
Additionally, there is nothing magical about having reached a full green bar with a skill that prevents loss at all, although that might be kinda neat were it the case. So if you have 16 dodges in your piloting skill (a full green bar and 1 dodge beyond) and are cloned, you lose 3 dodges, removing your green bar benefits, leaving you at 13 dodges (about 87% of a green bar.)