Dice Pool Your dice pools are determined by several factors, usually an attribute plus other bonuses. Such as accuracy being agility + weapons accuracy + other bonuses. Or sneak being agility + other bonuses. Some skills and abilities have different dice pools, which can be found under their entry. For instance dodge is factored by (1+agility)/3 to determine your dice pool.

Your dice pool for a given skill or ability is the maximum number of d6s you have towards that skill for a round. If you wish to take multiple actions with that ability you must split your dice pool. For instance, if you want to jump 2 separate pits you can split your acrobatics dice pool in 2. When splitting dice pools they must be as close to even as possible, so an 11 point acrobatic dice pool splits into 5 and 6.

You may also take a condition penalty to your dice pool. This may be applied for visibility, wind condition, terrain, etc. After you have your total dice pool you roll your dice and see if you succeed or fail.

Splitting a dice pool You may generally only use a single dice pool once per round. Exceptions to this are saves, soak, and DV. Otherwise, taking multiple actions with the same pool in a round require splitting a dice pool. For instance, making multiple attacks requires you to split a dice pool. Or if you wanted to climb a small slope, jump a small hole and start swimming you’d have to split your athletics dice pool. Generally you can split your dice pool as often as you like in a round, though things like weapon rate of fire or gm fiat may limit how often you can take each action. At the end of your turn all dice pools are considered reset for the following rounds.

Threshold Threshold is the number you need to meet or beat to have success. Usually tests succeed or partially succeed or fail when you meet a threshold.

Hits Your total dice pool for an ability is the number of d6s you roll in a given situation. In most situations every 5 or 6 you roll is considered a hit. So if for a willpower save you roll a total of 6 dice, and you roll one 5 and one 6, you have 2 hits. You then compare that number to the threshold, which determines whether you succeed, fail or draw, and depending on the action how much success or failure you experience, which is determined by the type of test it is. Tests are explored more below.

Net hits & Misses Each hit over a threshold is a net hit. Each point under the threshold is a net miss. Sometimes net hits and misses matter, others they don’t.

Success Test On a success test you only need to meet the threshold to succeed. If you do, you succeed. If you fail to hit the threshold, you fail. Sometimes net hits or net misses may have additional banes or boons. Most tests where you roll against a static threshold are success tests.

Opposed Test An opposed test is when characters are rolling against each other. For instance, if one character is sneaking, and the other is rolling to spot him with detection this is an opposed roll. Generally an opposed roll can allow either side to succeed, or on a draw, a partial affect for both parties involved in the roll. Most tests vs another targets test are opposed tests.

In the above example, if the sneaker wins, he remains undetected. On a draw, the detector doesn’t spot the sneaker but is aware there is someone out there and combat can begin as normal. If the detector wins, he spots the sneaker and can begin combat, getting a surprise attack.

Extended Test An extended test is one you can try for a period of time until you have success or fail. For instance, disarming a tough explosive may have an extended test security (12) check. Each check may take 1 minute, and it may explode in 5 minutes. This allows someone to continuously make security checks, and if they cumulatively get 12 hits they succeed. If they fail in the 5 minutes…BOOM! Sometimes extended tests have partial affects before they succeed. For instance, if you cure a disease (3) with a roll of 2, the new disease is (1)

Group Tests Sometimes more than one person can attempt to achieve success on a given task. For instance, 2 people may be able to try and lift a heavy large door. When doing so both get to roll their relevant ability, and add their hits together for success. Group tests and extended tests can be combined together.

Try Again Whether or not you can try again is largely dependent on the task. For instance, with security if you fail on a lock, you can usually attempt to repack it. If you fail on a trap the trap goes off, so you cannot retry the check, unless your lucky enough that it’s one of those self resetting traps.

Example You make a check ve fear and get 2 hits. The save threshold is 3, you lose, and have one net miss. Your number of net misses may or may not be relevant. For instance, if it was a save vs fear you flee for net misses, or 1 rounds total. If you were making an attack, it is just a miss and you need not know anymore.

If the save was against a threshold of 2, you have a draw. A draw usually allows you to succeed, but on an opposed test a draw usually gives both parties an advantage. For instance if attacking a draw hits, but with no additional damage. On an opposed stealth roll the sneaker emails hiden but the guard becomes aware that someone is nearby and becomes an active guard.

If the threshold was one, you would have a success with one net hit. Sometimes net hits are important, and other times they are not. For instance, with an attack, each net hit grants you +1 to your DV.

Dice Pool less than 0 Between penalties and suffering from fatigue there is always a chance that your dice pool is reduced to 0 or less. When this situation comes up, you still get to roll 1 dice, but only count a 6 as a hit.

Dice Pools Maximum
The maximum number of dice in a dice pool you can have, other than for DV and soak rolls, is 20. Now you may boost your pools higher than that, for instance you can push your accuracy up to 40, but the most dice you can use at once is 20. But if you are blind(-6), firing through heavy cover(-8), and firing with 6 ranks of fatigue(-6), you still roll 20 dice. You may also split your over 40 dice pool to roll two 20 dice attacks.

Critical Hits A critical hit happens when half the dice you roll come up 6s (minimum of 2) or you defeat a threshold by 6 or more. Some actions have clear cut examples of what happens on a critical hit (such as attacks) while others may be up to GM Fiat and that particular situation.

Critical Miss A critical miss happens when half your dice come up 1s, or you fail to get a single hit if rolling 4 or more dice. A critical miss may have specific affects, or may be up to GM Fiat and that particular situation.


Medic Checks You can only benefit from a single medic roll per rest or breather. You can be stabilized and bleeding can be stopped more than once per breather or rest, but you gain no additional benefit from the procedure.

Breather Up to 3 times per day the party may choose to take a breather. During a breather you recover your recovery rate in power points. You may also spend you recovery pool to recover hit points or power points. You must allocate your pool to an attribute before rolling. For instance, you can allocate 3 points to hit points, and 2 points to power points. You then roll, and each hit recovers 1 point of that attribute. Lastly, you recover one level of temporary fatigue. Note: For lower combat games check the optional rules for variant breathers.

Sleep When you sleep you completely recover your power points. You also recover your recovery rate in hit points. You may also expend any remaining points in your recovery pool, which also recovers. Lastly you recover all temporary fatigue and 1 level of short fatigue.

Long Term Care. If you are sick, poisoned or injured you may benefit from long term care. You may administer long term care to yourself, but suffer a -2 to the roll. A caregiver can administer long term care to a number of patients equal to his medic score. All patients in long term care can do nothing but rest, while the care giver can do a few other quick actions through out the day. Patients may only benefit from 1 long term care per day. The caregiver may give a patient 1 benefit, and may give different patients different benefits. The caregiver may recover a patient’s medic in hit points, try and recover fatigue as if using the Succor spell, or adding medic to rolls vs disease, poison or radiation.

Body is rolled against when surviving against the elements, starvation and hunger. Temporary fatigue Does not go away with a short rest when suffering from the above. Neither short nor temporary fatigue go away with asleep when afflicted either.

Overland Travel

Often, you will need to calculate Overland travel speed and distance traveled in the course of your questing. To figure out how far you can travel per day you can calculate 10 (roughly the amount of time travelled) xs the BP of the slowest member of the party. If you are travelling by vehicle you multiply 10 x the top speed, or 10 × 1/2TS if the vehicle is a mount(but you can do a forced march, see below). Whatever your total is the number of kilometers you can travel in a day. When on a road or path you travel at full speed, but other terrains have modifiers as outlined below. Some terrains may be untravelable be certain vehicles.

Terrain Speed Modifier
Desert x 4/6
Forest x 3/4
Jungle x 1/4
Hills x 3/4
Mountains (with road) x 3/4
Mountains x 1/4
Plains x 9/10
Swamp x 1/2
Water – Rough x 3/4
Water – Severe x 1/4
Air – Windy x 4/5
Circumstances Speed Modifier
Fog x 4/5
Storms x 1/2

Forced march

You can make a forced march to increase your overland speed, as an individual or with animal mounts. When you make a forced march you push yourself a little faster, and a little longer. Instead of multiplying your speed by 10, you multiply it by how much you push yourself. You can continue traveling over 10, but each time you do you make a grit check vs the number of units over 10 you are travleing. For instance, if you travEl 4 units over 10, you muse make 4 consecutive grit checks, at 1, 2, 3 and 4. Each time you fail a check you take a level of short fatigue, on a draw a level of temporary fatigue, and on a success nothing happens. If using a mount, the mount takes 1 hit point on a draw, 2 hit points on a failure and nothing on a success. Each time your mount has to make a fatigue check, the rider must also make one, but at 1 less than the mount.


Fatigue From Environment Besides the normal fatigue saves you can get beaten up by the elements, starvation, dehydration and general scrapes and bruises. All of these actions are resisted by endurance??.

Suffocation Suffocation is caused by a lack of oxygen, whether because of being underwater, smoke inhalation, or any other way you may be cut off from oxygen. If you are aware you are about to loose oxygen you can hold your breathe for a number of rounds equal to your body. After that you begin to suffocate. Make a DC 1 check vs Grit the first round you run out of oxygen, and continue to save each consecutive round, with the DC increasing by 1. Each time you fail you gain a level of short fatigue. After you fill your short fatigue you black out and continue to suffocate. After you fill your long fatigue, if you are still suffocating the following round, you die. Someone can revive you with a medic check equal to the number of boxes of long fatigue you have filled.


Extreme elements require a threshold check, generally 2 to 3 times per 24 hour period, though this may vary (such as for a warm afternoon in the freezing arctic.) When you fail an elements check you gain a level of long fatigue, and on a draw you gain a level of short fatigue.

Heat Level Threshold Checks per day
Hot 1 1
Sweltering 2 2
Blistering 3 3
Cold Level Threshold Checks per day
Cold 1 2
Freezing 2 3
Sub-Zero 3 4


In some setting, radiation poisoning may be a big deal, and in many others it Is likely nonexistent. When you are exposed to radiation you make a grit save vs the radiation level. On a failure you take a level of long fatigue and on a draw you take a level of short fatigue. Whatever the outcome, you become Irradiated, and you cannot recover any fatigue of short or greater while you are Irradiated. If you fill up your fatigue bar and start to take hit point damage from radiation make an endurance check each time vs the total amount of damage you’ve taken. If you succeed, you can continue to function normally. If you fail, you die. On a draw make a Savvy roll. If you hit the threshold with your savvy roll you ghoulify.


If yoy run out of food or choose not to eat, you begin to starve. You must save vs starvation for every day without food. The threshold starts at 1 and increases by 1 each day without food. Each time you fail a check vs starvation you gain a level of short fatigue. Fatigue from starvation cannot be recovered while you are still starving.


Dehydration is checked against when you don’t have any water to drink. Dehydration must be checked once per day in cold or normal conditions, twice per day in hot and three times per day in blistering or sweltering heat. The Threshold begins at 1 and increases by 1 each attempt. Each time you fail a check vs dehydration you gain a level of long fatigue. Fatigue from dehydration cannot be recovered while you are still dehydrated.

Sleep Deprevation

Every 24 hours(or whatever cycle your world is on) you go without sleep you risk suffering from sleep Deprevation. Make a threshold check equal to the number of days you’ve gone without sleep. If you draw you take a level of temporary fatigue, and on a failure you take a level of short fatigue. You cannot recover short fatigue or greater while sleep deprived. You become well rested again by getting 8 hours of sleep plus 1 hour for every day you missed. If you ever take a hit point of damage from being sleep deprived you fall unconciouss and sleep for 1 day straight.

Scrapes and bruises

Scrapes and bruises represent wear and tear of a hard climb, falling down a mine shaft, or falling around on slippery ice. Scrapes and bruises grant short fatigue when endured.

Scrapes and bruises happen when you injure yourself taking an aggressive action. For instance, the party is climbing a mountain with gear and have no real chance of falling. The GM has everyone make 2 threshold 2 athletics checks, and each time they fail they take a level of short fatigue, and if they draw they take a level of temporary fatigue. Or perhaps the party walks into a trap that’s a dead drop, and the gm decides bumps and bruises makes more sense than HP damage. He has everyone make an acrobatics 3 threshold check as they fall into the pit, knocking joints out of place and hurting themselves. All failures result in one level of long fatigue while a draw results in a level of short fatigue. This can vary for all kinds of actions, such as traversing slippery terrain that’s hard (acrobatics), jumping pits (athletics), climbing (athletics), swimming in tough waters (athletics), traps, etc. Note: bumps and bruises does NOT generally roll against endurance, though it can at times.

Strenuous activity

While similar to scrapes and bruises, strenuous activity represents doing hard labor for an extended period of time. Activities such as roofing, laying pavement, climbing for hours straight all may require a strenuous activity check. Generally you must check versus strenuous activity once every 2 hours, though it could be more or less depending on how difficult the activity is and how comfortable the environment is. For instance forging a weapon in the heart of a volcano may require a check every hour, while in an air conditioned flat with a steady supply of water it may be every 4 hours. Unlike scrapes and bruises, strenuous activity always rolls vs endurance.

Often times you may need to roll vs strenuous activity and bumps and bruises. For instance, when swimming along the English channel you need to make two athletics checks (bumps and bruises) and 4 endurance checks(strenuous activity).


Diseases come in many forms. They can be airborne, from contact, eating, and even delivered by some particularly nasty beasts attacks.

When you first encounter a disease you make a grit save vs the disease. If you succeed you do not catch the disease. On a draw, you do not catch the disease but if you have to roll vs the disease again in the next 24 hours the threshold is increased by 1. If you fail vs the disease, you catch the disease.

Each day after you catch the disease (usually, some diseases, especially those administered through attacks kick in that day) you must make a save vs the disease threshold. On a success, you take no effects and reduce the threshold by 1. If you reduce the threshold below 0 you are cured of the disease. On a failure or draw you take the type of fatigue as listed on the chart. The GM can alter diseases to fit whatever his mold is.

Each day spent resting increases the grit roll by 1.
Someone (including the sick person) can apply long term care to the sick person. When applying long term care, the person providing care makes a medic check. Each hit of medic counts towards your grit roll vs the disease. Only temporary fatigue may be recovered while you are sick.

Disease Threshold Failure Draw Typical Duration Notes
1 short Temporary 2 days Common Cold
2 short Temporary 4 days Flu
3 Long Short 1 week Strpt Threat
4 Long Short 2 weeks bleuber

Falling When you fall more than a few feet you risk injuring yourself. If you fall more than 2 meters you may take damage. For every meter (1 hex) you fall you take 1 DV of damage. When falling you may make an acrobatics check to try and reduce the damage. Each hit of acrobatics reduces the damage by 1, and if you reduce the damage to 0 or less you also manage to stay standing. If you still have damage coming through You may resist the remaining damage with fortitude only. Armor is ignored when falling. If you fall on a soft surface you can cut the DV in half. However, you cannot take more than 60 DV of damage from falling.

Leveling Up We offer two alternative leveling systems as outlined below:

Session Based With session based levelling the GM awards levels when it feels appropriate, roughly at the rate of once per session. For shorter sessions, or unproductive sessions the GM is encouraged not to offer a level. Like wise if your group plays much shorter sessions (3 hours or less) maybe change levelling to every other session. This way takes the least bookwork and is the easiest to implement. If playing most standard published campaigns out there this method will take you to the 40s or maybe low 50s by the end of the campaign.

XP Based levelling Some GMS prefer to award experience. If this is you this system works pretty well. Characters level every 3 XP. PCS earn a maximum of 2 XP per session for completing objectives and progressing the storyline. If it’s a shorter or unproductive session, reward 0 or 1 cp for the session. Additionally, the PCS can gain 1 additional xp per session for good role playing, playing in character and being fun at the table. While I don’t recommend punishing shy players with this technique, they should have to interact some to earn this XP. In a short or unproductive session thE rp xp should generally be forfeit, but exceptional contributions to the table can be allowed.

Gaining levels: When you gain a level you gain a perk point. That’s it, nice and simple. You may spend that point on a perk now. You may also bank the point. You may only have one point banked at a time, so if you level again you must spend one perk point. Generally GMS should only allow banked perks to be spent at level up, but he can allow it midlevel if that’s his desire.

Ranks and Levels: Your current rank is your digit in the tens place +1. Your rank does not provide anything directly in the base game, though it helps the gm determine the rank of mooks used and some settings have bonuses based your rank.

You also have a tier in any spellcasting style you may have, which is equal to the level of the perk you currently have that allows you to cast those spells. For instance, if you have the 3rd level of charisma style (Paladin) you are a tier 3 paladin, and an Adept spellcaster. This determines several factors for spellcasters, including spells you can choose and how many PP you can augment a spell by.

Rank/Tier Level Character Rank Spellcasting Title Augment
1 1-9 Fledgling Novice 1
2 10-19 Strider Journeyman 2
3 20-29 Veteran Adept 3
4 30-39 Exemplar Expert 4
5 40-49 Elite Master 5
6 50+ Legend Master 5+


Killing Killing an opponent is generally considered knocking an opponent unconciouss, killing them, of removing a mook from the board(out not down).


BASICS 2.0 underableedingsun