Anytime you need to find out what happens based on a character’s or creature’s abilities, you need to make a d100 task roll. The easiest way to explain that is to break it down into stages.
Decide the initial Target Number (TN)
The GM decides how difficult any given task is to complete and assigns it a Target Number (TN). The TN can be anything, but usually will be between 0 and 100. Below are some standard difficulties to give you a rough guide.
|Difficulty||Target Number (TN)|
Determine relevant Attributes and Aptitudes
Next the GM decides what Attributes and Aptitudes can be used. For the character attempting the task add their relevant Attribute + Aptitude to the TN.
Apply any other modifiers
Next the GM adds or subtracts any other modifiers that may affect the TN. A bribe might be easier if backed up by a significant amount of money for instance, or it might be harder than normal to keep track of a villain in a busy crowd. There are some example modifiers for combat situations later.
Make the roll
The character attempting the task then rolls a d100. If they roll equal to the TN or under then they succeed at whatever they were trying to do. If they roll higher than the TN then they fail.
When a character is working against another, then it is called an Opposed Roll. Both participants roll their relevant Attribute + Aptitude and try to score more points than their opponent. The character with the most points wins. The final outcome is the difference between the two results. An outcome of zero is a draw.
For example, two characters (Scamp and Byron) are playing a game of wits. The GM decides that they should make an opposed Mental Agility + Concentration roll against a standard TN of 50. Let’s assume both characters have a Mental Agility + Concentration of 10 to make things nice and easy, so they both need to roll 60 or under for a positive result. Scamp rolls a 58 and only manages to score 2 points. Byron meanwhile rolls a 48, scoring 12 points. Byron wins the first game by a total of 10 points. They decide to play again, this time Scamp rolls a 62, and scores a disappointing -2 points! Byron however rolls a 90 and fails by a whopping -30 points! Scamp wins this round by a massive 28 points!
Degrees of Success and Failure
A lot of the time you just need to know if something has worked or not. At other times the GM may decide that things are a little more nuanced. For those times assume that for every 10 points of success or failure, the results are progressively better or worse. For example, the GM might decide that a character learns one piece of information for every 10 points of success when researching something, or that if they fail by 30 points or more then they learn the wrong information. We’ll leave the specifics up to the GM, because it depends on the task at hand.
Automatic Success and Failure
Lady Luck is a fickle mistress, no matter how skilled you are, or how unprepared you may be. Any roll of 01-05 is always a success regardless of the TN and because Lady Luck is smiling your character gains 1 point of Shaper Energy to be used however you wish. If this would take you above your normal maximum, the extra point will dissipate naturally the next time you rest, if you haven’t used it by then.
On a roll of 96-00 Lady Luck is not smiling and you automatically fail at whatever you are attempting.
Learned vs Innate Aptitudes
Innate Aptitude rolls can be attempted by anyone. If a character doesn’t have any points in an Innate Aptitude they may still try to use it, but only get to add their relevant Attribute to the TN.
Learned Aptitude rolls can generally only be attempted by characters that have at least some skill in the Aptitude. You wouldn’t want a have a go hero attempting brain surgery after all.
In some cases the GM may decide to allow an unskilled character to attempt to use a Learned Aptitude. In those rare cases the GM should apply a -20 modifier (or possibly greater) to the TN.
With the GM’s permission characters may assist one another to make tasks easier and in some cases faster to complete. The character with the highest Aptitude makes the roll, with the other characters assisting.
An assistant that has points in the Aptitude being tested is a skilled assistant and adds 10 to the TN.
An assistant that has no points in the Aptitude being tested is an unskilled assistant and only adds 5 points to the TN.
If the roll involves a Learned Aptitude only skilled assistants may assist.