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Basic Test Difficulty

Test Difficulty Target Number
Routine 7
Easy 9
Average 11
Challenging 13
Hard 15
Formidable 17
Imposing 19
Nigh Impossible 21

Advanced Tests

Task Difficulty Success Threshold
Easy 5
Average 10
Challenging 15
Hard 20
Formidable 25

Test result = 3d6 + ability + focus


When action time begins, the following procedure is used.
1. The GM says, “Roll for initiative.” Action time is now in effect.
2. Each player makes an initiative roll. This is a Dexterity (Initiative) ability test. The GM rolls initiative for each major NPC and each group of minor NPCs (major NPCs act individually, while minor NPCs act together in groups).
3. The GM compares the test results of all the characters and arranges them from highest to lowest into an initiative list. This is the order that characters will take their turns in each round of the combat. If there’s a tie, whoever rolled higher on the Dragon Die wins. If it’s still a tie, whoever has the higher ability wins.
4. The character at the top of the initiative list takes their turn. On a turn, a character can take a major action and a minor action or two minor actions. Once the actions are resolved, this character’s turn is over.
5. The next character on the initiative list takes their turn.
6. Repeat step 5 until each character has taken a turn.
7. Once each character has taken a turn, the round ends and a new one begins. Continue steps 4-7 each round. Initiative does not need to be rolled each round. The order remains set for the duration of the encounter. If new characters join the encounter, they roll initiative at the start of the round they appear and are added to the initiative list.
8. When the encounter is finished, the GM declares that action
time is over. Narrative time now resumes.


There are two basic types of attack: melee and ranged. Both are handled the same way.

1. You start by picking a target. To make a melee attack, you must be adjacent to your opponent. To make a missile attack, you must be able to see your target and be within range.
2. You make an attack roll. This is an ability test based on the weapon group of the weapon you are using (Strength for heavy blades, for example, or Dexterity for bows). This is modified by a focus if applicable and any other relevant bonuses (such as aiming, charging, magic items, talents, etc.).
3. Your attack roll is a basic ability test. Your target number is your opponent’s Defense.
4. If your test result is equal to or greater than your opponent’s Defense, your attack has hit.

Attack Roll Modifiers

Modifier Circumstance
–3 Defender in heavy cover, such as a building or stone wall. Melee attacker in heavy snow.
–2 Defender in light cover, such as a hedge or the woods. Melee attacker in the mud. Ranged attack vs. defender engaged in melee combat. Combat at night.
–1 Rain, mist, or smoke obscures the defender. Combat in low light conditions.
0 Normal circumstances.
+1 Attacker is on higher ground. Defender is prone. Melee attacker and allies outnumber defender 2 to 1.
+2 Melee attacker and allies outnumber defender 3 to 1. Defender is drunk.
+3 Defender is unaware of the attack.

Once you’ve hit an opponent, you then inflict damage. The procedure for calculating damage follows.
1. Roll your weapon’s damage and add your Strength ability and any other relevant modifiers. Note that weapons from the Bows Group add Perception instead of Strength to damage.
2. Subtract the armor rating of your opponent’s armor (unless it’s penetrating damage, in which case skip this step).
3. The result of steps 1 and 2 is your damage total. You inflict this amount of Health damage on your opponent. Note that if your opponent is well armored you may hit but inflict no damage at all.

• Another character can aid you with a heal action. You can’t benefit from another heal action until you take more damage.
• You can take a breather after a combat encounter. This is a 5-minute rest that lets you catch your breath, tend to minor cuts and abrasions, drink some water, and so on. After a breather, you get back 5 + Constitution + Level in Health. You can only take one breather after an encounter. If you were at 0 Health when the combat encounter ended, you cannot take a breather at all.
• You can get some sleep. If you can get at least 6 hours of restful sleep, you gain 10 + Constitution + Level in Health.
• You can receive magical healing. This is most commonly the mage spell heal.

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Dragon Age RPG SilverSeraph SilverSeraph