[Runequest] RQ 6 Failed Athletics

Styopa styopa1 at gmail.com
Wed Sep 10 21:46:23 EST 2014

"...a Failure represents your inability to complete a task - no harm done,
whereas a Fumble results in something disastrous and harmful...."
And I think that's the inconsistency of what Lev's pointing out, the
explicit RAW linkage between success/failure and the consequence.  The
consequences of failure are ALWAYS context-dependent, full stop.
By that same logic, a simple "failed" parry should just mean you fail to
parry, not that you get harmed - which is patently absurd.
And that's where the "failed climb roll means you didn't even start" sort
of disappoints at a gut level.

No, I see where Lev's at on this one: the skill roll merely says that you
succeed or don't.  "Crits"/"Fumbles" simply give you an additional layer of
granularity that can imply (but do not exclusively mean) exceptional
success or failure.  For some tasks, simple failure IS going to be
catastrophic...that's what makes them scary, and rarely-to-be-attempted.
 In this case, a fumble is inconsequentially worse than a failure.
 Likewise there are rolls where a critical success is nonsensical or

Of course, this is a detail of semantics, and "YGMV" and anyone can
ignore/use/infer whatever they want.

On Wed, Sep 10, 2014 at 2:27 AM, Pete Nash <the.iqari at gmail.com> wrote:

> I disagree with the claim that the meaning of failure cannot be context
>> independent. I think that consistency of what a failed roll means can and
>> should be sought. Especially in the same skill!
> All I can say is that the intent of the rules is this: a Failure
> represents your inability to complete a task - no harm done, whereas a
> Fumble results in something disastrous and harmful.
> In the case of leaping a chasm using the proposed alternate
> roll-again-for-distance rule, a simple Failure _could_ result in the
> character plunging to their death... and its difficult to envisage what
> additional disaster occurs with a Fumble, save for automatically falling or
> pulling another PC over the edge with them.
> Now I'm not against the alternate rule, its actually quite elegant, but
> it's against the spirit of RQ6 in general to unduly penalize players for
> attempting an action. As always YRQMV and if rolling again for distance
> works for you, then go for it!
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