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Seraph1m

Exceeding the Wound/Strain Threshold

65 posts in this topic

Hey guys,


 


Played my first game last night, acted as DM for the Beginner's Box.  I scoured the forums for an answer to this, but I only found an earlier post with incomplete answers:


 


What happens when a player suffers wounds that exceed his threshold? I know he suffers a critical injury and is knocked unconscious for the remainder of the encounter, but then what?  I assume he regains consciousness afterwards and can continue playing until the next encounter... but what happens when the next combat occurs?  I assume he can participate until he gets hit again?  And then the first wound he takes knocks him out again and he takes a second critical?


 


Do you have to perform healing on the PC to get them to wake up? What happens if they are at -8 health and you use a stimpack for 4 points of healing. Does the four healing points bring them to -4 or does it start at zero and they end up with 4 health as in D&D 4e? If you cannot bring them to a number below their wound threshold, do they stay unconscious?


 


As an aside, the rulebook doesn't seem to note how to construct combat encounters. How do you know how many or what type of enemy to throw for a given level/# of PCs? There is no notation in the stats regarding the strength of a given NPC henchman as compared to another henchman, etc...


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well, I think it pretty unlikely that they could have a -8. there is an overflow amount. when they reach that overflow (I think it is "brawn score" but i don't have the book in front of me). they die. Med. check I only allow once after a combat. Like the book says "first aid only goes so far"

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First, wounds taken count up from 0. At 0, you're perfectly healthy. When the wounds taken exceed the threshold you're taken out until they are reduced back to an amount equal to wound threshold or less. There is no auto-death cutoff, but there is a (really bad) rule that you stop tracking wounds that would exceed twice the wound threshold. This last rule is terrible because tough guys can get taken down for longer.

Doc likes this

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First, wounds taken count up from 0. At 0, you're perfectly healthy. When the wounds taken exceed the threshold you're taken out until they are reduced back to an amount equal to wound threshold or less. There is no auto-death cutoff, but there is a (really bad) rule that you stop tracking wounds that would exceed twice the wound threshold. This last rule is terrible because tough guys can get taken down for longer.

HD has the right of it. By RAW you don't keep track of their wound threshold once it exceeds their WT. There's a section on pg 113 that deals with medicine checks. This is what I would go with to revive a fallen ally. If the target exceeds their wound threshold it would be a hard medicine check. For every success, the target heals 1 wound.

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I don't think you regain consciousness (or at least the ability to do anything) until you reduce your wounds below your Threshold.

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I don't think you regain consciousness (or at least the ability to do anything) until you reduce your wounds below your Threshold.

You regain consciousness when your wounds are at or below your threshold.

Doc likes this

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...but there is a (really bad) rule that you stop tracking wounds that would exceed twice the wound threshold. 

 

When you go past twice your threshold, it should be that you stop tracking everything.  ;)

Serif Marak likes this

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...but there is a (really bad) rule that you stop tracking wounds that would exceed twice the wound threshold. 

 

When you go past twice your threshold, it should be that you stop tracking everything.  ;)

 

Yet in this game you cannot die from Wounds, only from Critical Hits. By not tracking Wounds in excess of twice the Threshld, it only makes it so that tough guys take longer to heal than the average guy. That's why it's a bad rule.

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So maybe you just use a constant, 12-15 seems about right? So you stop counting when you get to your WT + 12 say. Or does this create a bigger problem that I overlooked?

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I feel like it means that tough guys can survive wounds much deeper than not-so-tough guys, so those wounds take longer to heal.

But that's not what happens. Average guy with WT 12 gets hit by a strafing TIE fighter for 70 damage. He suffers 24 where it hits max. Three stimpacks later and he's at 12 Wounds and able to act.

 

Tough guy has WT 24. Same situation and he's at 48 Wounds. Five stimpacks later and he's still out with 33 Wounds. He can heal one more overnight, but then he'll need another two stimpacks the next day to be able to act.

 

So that's why I said that the rule is bad.

Edited by HappyDaze

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So maybe you just use a constant, 12-15 seems about right? So you stop counting when you get to your WT + 12 say. Or does this create a bigger problem that I overlooked?

The best solution is to not have a max tracked value for damage. Someone that takes hundreds of Wounds without dying is still going to be out for a long time.

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If a GM wanted attacks that far exceed a character's wound threshold to kill, then the GM could have a house rule that would add +10 to the critical injury roll for ever 10 or so wounds suffered beyond the character's wound threshold. You don't track that extra damage, but it does have a chance of still being pretty nasty, especially if that character is already banged up.

Edited by kaosoe

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Wouldn't someone able to take twice the amount of damage as someone else take twice as long to recover? Unless they had some ability to offset that?

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Meh. It hasn't come up for me, but I'd just keep tracking wounds indefinitinely, or if I felt like it was appropriate I'd just keep adding new, increasingly more severe critical injuries. Something... this isn't one of those things I'd find hard to improvise in the event of someone's body being kicked around for whatever reason(s).

For instance, if someone gets taken out on the side of a snowy mountain then suffers through an avalanche, I'd say they survived, but instead of tracking more wounds I'd say she broke an arm and a leg.

If an unconscious body got stepped on by a walker, I'd roll a critical injury with at least a +60 to the roll (considering she'd have to have at least one CI to be above their wound threshold to begin with).

If a group of stormtroopers blasts the hell out of a Force-user's body to finish the job, I'd either roll +60 critical injury roll or track the wounds and tell the player they've become a gaggle of blaster burns until they undergo major surgery, depending on my mood. :D

So on.

Edited by JonahHex
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I feel like it means that tough guys can survive wounds much deeper than not-so-tough guys, so those wounds take longer to heal.

But that's not what happens. Average guy with WT 12 gets hit by a strafing TIE fighter for 70 damage. He suffers 24 where it hits max. Three stimpacks later and he's at 12 Wounds and able to act.

 

 

 

In that case, the character should just be dead. 

 

I realize that the RAW doesn't support that if you read it strictly, but knowing Jay's philosophy from other games, the rules shouldn't be used in such a rigid fashion. The rules should be used to adjudicate situations that need it, not ones where the narrative result is clear-cut.

 

It's like if a character shoots themselves in the head with a blaster pistol, it shouldn't be handled as a normal attack roll. It should be lights out for that character. Otherwise you have people shooting themselves in the head to show how tough they are.

 

I realize that's different than how SAGA/d20 works – where there is a rule for everything – but Jay's games rely more on rulings that make narrative sense. 

 

 

… of course, that doesn't directly address the main issue you have (a bunch of little hits taking a character over 2xWT), but the situation should dictate what happens more than the rulebook. If they are getting punched, then maybe everything is fine. If they are getting shot at (and not by someone standing over them who can just end it) then maybe each hit over WT delivers a crit, and maybe the hit that takes them over 2xWT is rolled at +50 (in addition to the other modifiers). 

 

Use the RAW as a baseline, and make rulings that fit what is happening in the narrative.

bladerunner_35 and whafrog like this

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My point is that the rule is bad. Saying that it's fine for the rule to be bad because it's a narrative game is a total cop-out. There's no reason that this rule can't be made better.

JonahHex likes this

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I agree, it's bad. One bad rule doesn't a bad game make, though, particularly such an obscure rule that isn't likely to come up very often.

One possible solution is to say that wounds stop being tracked at 50 - your wound threshold. This way tougher characters don't stay unconscious for as long, and there's still some sort of logical limit on how much bookeeping is necessary.

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I agree, it's bad. One bad rule doesn't a bad game make, though, particularly such an obscure rule that isn't likely to come up very often.

One possible solution is to say that wounds stop being tracked at 50 - your wound threshold. This way tougher characters don't stay unconscious for as long, and there's still some sort of logical limit on how much bookeeping is necessary.

I never claimed that this bad rule makes for a bad game. I happen to enjoy this game considerably.

 

I don't stop tracking Wounds at twice the Threshold. However, for each time damage exceeds another multiple of WT*, I require spending a Destiny point to prevent instant death, and the player and I (as GM) come up with a somewhat plausible explanation for survival. This auto-death is in addition to any Critical Hits that come from hits that exceeding WT, and the spending of the Destiny point only prevents the auto-death. Death from a Critical Hit generated by the hit cannot be avoided in this manner.

 

So in the case of a strafing TIE fighter hitting the character, spending the Destiny means the hit was actually a near miss and the character's unconscious body is now laying along the edge of the resulting impact crater (hey, in Star Wars lasers tend to cause explosions when they strike a target).

 

I've had this come up once so far, when a character failed to disarm an explosive. The Destiny point was spent and the character survived by ducking into a recess in the floor moments before detonation. She still spent the better part of a day unconscious even with stimpacks and a doctor's efforts.

 

So, with WT 14:

Unconscious/Taken Out at 15+

As above but spend 1 Destiny to not die at 29+

As above but spend 2 Destiny to not die at 43+

As above but spend 3 Destiny to not die at 57+

etc.

 

The Destiny cost is not cumulative. If you already spent 1 Destiny to avoid death at 30 Wounds and are taken up to 50 Wounds only 1 additional Destiny (for a total of 2 Destiny) are required to avoid death.

Edited by HappyDaze
JonahHex likes this

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Jeez you must play some vicious games that this is a big issue.How often does this come up? Are the bad guys standing over you after you go down blasting away to finish you off? Are you constantly being attacked by vehicle scale weapons at personal scale? Brutal, man!

JonahHex, Keeop and polyheadronman like this

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Jeez you must play some vicious games that this is a big issue.How often does this come up? Are the bad guys standing over you after you go down blasting away to finish you off? Are you constantly being attacked by vehicle scale weapons at personal scale? Brutal, man!

It's come up twice. The first was a character shot with a light blaster cannon (planetary scale, damage 4 + 1 success = 50 damage) and the second was a character trying to disarm an explosive equivalent to a concussion missile (but she 'only' caught the Blast portion of it).

 

Just because it occurs infrequently doesn't mean it shouldn't be addressed by solid rules since the outcome can certainly be significant.

Edited by HappyDaze

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Jeez you must play some vicious games that this is a big issue.How often does this come up? Are the bad guys standing over you after you go down blasting away to finish you off? Are you constantly being attacked by vehicle scale weapons at personal scale? Brutal, man!

It's come up twice. The first was a character shot with a light blaster cannon (planetary scale, damage 4 + 1 success = 50 damage) and the second was a character trying to disarm an explosive equivalent to a concussion missile (but she 'only' caught the Blast portion of it).

 

Just because it occurs infrequently doesn't mean it shouldn't be addressed by solid rules since the outcome can certainly be significant.

 

From what I recall of the RAW (the book isn't near me at the moment for once), being hit by a planetary-scale weapon automatically incapacitiates a personal-scale creature, possibly with a Critical Injury +50 if the GM feels it's appropriate (which it almost always should be). I also recall a discussion with a player who believed wounds are still tracked with planetary scale weapons, so I could be wrong.

 

In any case, in both of the above examples I probably would have done something like put them 10 points above their wound threshold and given them a Critical Injury +50 to deal with. It's quick, it''s easy, and its appropriately abstract for a situation involving the survivor of a tank blast or something.

Edited by JonahHex

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If there's a rule that planetary weapons automatically take out character scale targets, I missed it. I've been going with the 1:10 damage conversion. Theoretically, high XP characters could have a WT high enough to not go down to a minor hit from the least of planetary scale weapons.

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I have also considered a rule that planetary scale weapons used against character scale targets have a Vicious trait with a rank equal to the base (planetary scale) Damage. This means that the medium laser cannons on that TIE would do 60 (+10 per success) Wounds in character scale with Vicious 6. With such a rule, my other instant death rule would be far less necessary. This is also a simple fix for such weapons and could be used for other single hits of massive damage.

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Core Rulebook page 224; "Note that planetary-scale weapons deal massive damage to individuals. Most hits automatically deal enough wounds to far exceed a target's wound threshold, meaning the target will be automatically incapacitated for the remainder of the encounter. However, some GMs may feel this is insufficient to represent the fearsome power of a starship weapon when turned on an individual. In these cases, the GM should feel free to add +50 to the resulting Critical Injury roll. (Also, those "hit" by a planetary scale weapon might be on the periphary of the blast zone, explaining why they survived somewhat unscathed.)"

I feel that passage could be interpreted both ways; either tracking wounds or simply incapacitating the character (possibly with a Critical Injury +50).

Your rules are really good; I like how the player hit by the light blaster cannon was still unconscious even after recieving stims/medical attention. That said, they're a bit complex for an uncommon occurance, so I'll be doing one of two things;

1. Wounds are tracked at 50 minus the character's wound threshold. After that, no more wounds are tracked, but critical injuries are added each time a new wound is inflicted.

2. Wing the hell out of it. I think it's pretty fair to say that a Medicine check made to heal somebody who survived a TIE Fighter blast takes a month, or a week with the help of a bacta tank. The player in question gets a Resilience check during this period as well, and the results of both checks determine whether he lives or dies.

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