A Penny for Your Thoughts
On 2006-04-18, Vincent wrote:
Okay, example time.
I'm the GM. You're the player. My npc is Althesa, a warrior-priestess of a truly bloodthirsty cult. Her interest is to drive all foreign influences out forever. Your character is Irin, the lieutenant of the prince sent to pacify the region. His interests are to marry a priestess of the cult (in order to create a tie by blood between the two groups) and to do the prince's dirty work so he can keep his hands clean.
My character comes into your character's chamber in the middle of the night, to kill your character.
We roll. You roll your defending yourself, Guts, d12 d6. I have "warrior-priestessing" as an endeavor, so I roll it, my Art, d10 d8.
Your high die is a 4. Mine's an 8. I'm the challenger.
"I cut your throat while you sleep," I say.
You reroll. It comes up a 7. You do a partial block or dodge and I get the advantage. (Also, because my dice are better than yours and I didn't double you out the gate, your name goes on the we owe list.)
"I wake up when you come in, but I don't realize the danger I'm in - I figure you're a prostitute bought by my captain and sent to me. I catch your wrist, but only when you've got your dagger to my throat."
We both roll fresh. You roll an 11, but adding the d6 advantage die, my roll's a 15 (ouch).
"While we're grappling, I slip a long spike, a needle [holding up my thumb and forefinger spread as far as they can] out of my sleeve with my other hand. I stab it straight into your ear."
You reroll. A 6. My roll doubles yours, I totally win.
First of all, you have to take the blow. "Oh hell," you say. "Yeah, you stab me in the ear. Crap, dude."
Then we negotiate additional grief for you. Either of us can simply insist that it's exhaustion or injury, my choice - and let's say that exhausting or injuring your character means that you lose two die sizes from Grace - but let's hold that back. Is there something else we like better?
"I totally kill you," I say. "I totally kill you right in the ear."
You think about it for a while. Your name's on the we owe list; being killed won't take it off. You can continue to play this character, in flashback, as a ghost, all kinds of ways. But, "nah, I'd rather just be exhausted or injured than killed. But how about you make me deaf in that ear?"
"Deaf in that ear and lose one die size from Guts," I say.
"Done. And you leave me for dead."
So what we've just done is, we've established that me deafening you in one ear and taking one die size from your Guts, and leaving you for dead, is equivalent to me taking two die sizes from your Grace (for exhaustion or injury) - and we've chosen the former.
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