[Runequest] Contemplating House Rule -- Advice?

Bjørn Are Stølen stolenbjorn at hotmail.com
Sat May 21 15:57:27 EST 2011

I agree that there's a huge element of unpredictability in injury. IMO that's why we roll damage, and not just have fixed damage. I once wondered how a Katana could only do 2 damage, but that was unitl I started test-cutting with sharp swords myself. One minor mistake, and that water-filled bottle was merely wacked as if it got hit by a 900 gram iron rod (quite painful in itself, I guess, but not as bad as beeing cut through).
In my houserules, I let myself be inspired by a table from Warhammer, where you roll on a table whenever you drop beneath zero HP. I made up such tables for each hit location, and was injury-specific (I had a blunt damage-table, a cutting damage-table and a piercing damage-table). The problem with the system was that it was difficult for GM and players to keep track of which joints had been imobilized by that club, which muscle had a severe bleeding stab-wound, etc

Date: Thu, 19 May 2011 20:54:44 -0400
From: pmaranci at gmail.com
To: runequest at rpgreview.net
Subject: Re: [Runequest] Contemplating House Rule -- Advice?

I'm not a medical professional, but it's my understanding that there's a huge element of unpredictability in response to injury. A blow to the head can cause unconsciousness, death, or simply a bit of pain. TV shows where the heroes are able to knock people out with dependable accuracy and no chance of serious injury or accidental death are completely inaccurate.

In the real world, a seemingly minor head wound can cause death, or have surprisingly little effect. I'm reminded of several cases where people were shot multiple times in the back of the skull; not only did they not die, in some cases they didn't even realize that they were wounded. Yes, massive injury will certainly kill. But it seems to me that RQ should mirror the unpredictable results that less-than-massive damage can have.


On Thu, May 19, 2011 at 6:17 PM, Tom Cantine <tcantine at incentre.net> wrote:

Hmmm. That said, though, I think a resistance roll is a little more realistic and dramatic, in that a deadline is a little too concrete, too predictable. If you know Biff's bleeding out at 1 hp per round and he has 5 left, you can make decisions based on that. I think it preferable that it be a genuine gamble. "Hold on, Biff! Hold on!" You really don't know at what moment it'll be too late to help him.

For something as serious as a PC death, in fact, I think it's probably best to have it be something handled behind the GM screen. Even the player shouldn't necessarily know the moment, but should be fed some subjective "moving down the tunnel toward the light..." embellishment.

On 19-May-11, at 3:54 PM, Robert Hoffman wrote:

Since we use bleeding rules that already factors in someone's constitution towards the character's ability to sustain life.  Going to 0 is unconscious and negative your max hit points is considered death.  Considering the damage that got you that point bleeding out in 10-12 rounds isn't really all that much in real world time. 
Also going back to our magic number, receiving a single blow to the head, chest or abdomen that is double the hitpoints +6 is instant death.  If the damage to those locations is just negative its regular bleeding rolls, if its double the hitpoints its the major bleeding rolls.  We've had situations with characters bleeding out of 2-3 wounds that they have to roll for individually.  Watching them slip ever closer to the negative hitpoint "deadline" certainly does provide tension,... especially when the rest of the party still needs to finish combat before they can even think of helping their fallen comrade.
From: runequest-bounces at rpgreview.net [mailto:runequest-bounces at rpgreview.net] On Behalf Of Styopa
Sent: Thursday, May 19, 2011 2:07 PM
To: RuneQuest Rules
Subject: Re: [Runequest] Contemplating House Rule -- Advice?
On Thu, May 19, 2011 at 1:59 PM, Peter Maranci <pmaranci at gmail.com> wrote:

Personally it has always seemed to me that the cut-off of death at zero general HP didn't make sense - it's much too binary for a percentile system. :D

How about this? At zero HP, the victim is unconscious. For every point below 0, they must make a resistance roll of the negative damage versus their CON.
Not too complicated at all, although I'd make it vs half their con, otherwise you're giving them a boatload of safety net.
I like it, I think it will add tension when someone is 'at death's door'. _______________________________________________

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