[Runequest] Acid and Dagger Damage

Bruce Mason mason.bruce at gmail.com
Tue Dec 14 20:05:31 EST 2010

On 14 December 2010 08:38, Nikk Effingham <nikk.effingham at gmail.com> wrote:

> >How best can I match this information with the
> >many reports I've heard of people being stabbed repeatedly, yet walking
> >out of the hospital the next day with superficial wounds?
> Break away from the RQ ethos where a single attack roll represents a
> single blow. So rolling 5 damage might represent three smaller cuts to
> the same location. And a roll of no damage that penetrates armour, or
> a miss, might still represent a foe being cut a tiny bit that doesn’t
> really debilitate them.

This runs the risk of black being portrayed as white. Given that at heart RQ
is a game not an accurate simulation of reality then stating in the game
that missed attacks may still do damage but not enough damage to actually
matter will lead to players saying "huh?" It was to break away from this
type of sophistry ("hit points aren't really hit points they're actually a
measure of luck and skill so a 10th level barbarian being hit by an axe for
7 damage was actually just made a bit more tired by getting out of the way
while the 1st level woodsman standing next to him was cut in two by 7 damage
from an axe.) Generally speaking, once a game starts giving ludicrous
results (you can't hit a normal person with a dagger without breaking their
arm) then you either accept it as a wrinkle and get on with it or you revise
the game. Trying to explain it away through sophistry is a slippery slope.

In my opinion RQ3 is ludicrously lethal and that lethality makes for a poor
game. I know I fixed it in all my years of running it through the
application of large amounts of GM fudge.
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