The Murder of Crows
Tests are the basic way of determining success or failure in a game of ROGUE TRADER. When an Explorer performs any task that could have dramatic consequences—affecting the story, a character’s health, a leader’s reputation, the safety of the ship, and so on—a Test should be performed.
THE CORE MECHANIC
Determine the a Skill or Characteristic to Test.
Add or subtract any relevant modiﬁers to the Skill or Characteristic.
Make a percentile roll (1d100).
If the percentile roll is less than or equal to the Skill or Characteristic being tested, the Test succeeds.
If the percentile roll is greater than the Skill or Characteristic being tested, the Test fails.
DEGREES OF SUCCESS AND FAILURE
For most Tests, it is enough to know whether a character succeeded or failed. Sometimes, however, it is useful to know how well a character succeeded, or how badly he failed. This is particularly important in certain combat situations, such as ﬁ ring a gun capable of a semi-automatic or fully automatic burst ﬁre.
Measuring degrees of success and failure in a Skill or Characteristic Test is straightforward. After the percentage roll is made, compare the roll with the modiﬁed Characteristic score.
For each full 10 points by which the Test succeeded, one degree of success is achieved.
Conversely, for each 10 full points by which the Test failed, one degree of failure is gained.
The most common type of Test an Explorer performs during the game are Skill Tests. Each Skill is governed by a Characteristic. For example, the Dodge Skill is governed by the Agility Characteristic. To make a Skill Test, add any relevant modiﬁers to the Skill’s governing Characteristic, then make a percentage roll. If the result is equal to or less than the modified Characteristic, the Test succeeds. If the result is greater than the modiﬁed Characteristic, the Test fails.
Sometimes an Explorer wants to attempt something not covered by a Skill. In such cases, a Characteristic Test can be used instead of a Skill Test. The GM determines the most appropriate Characteristic for the Test, then the player makes a percentage roll. If the roll is equal to or less than the
Characteristic, the Test succeeds. If the roll is greater than the Characteristic, the Test fails.
Not all tests are equal. A routine landing at a spaceport and navigating a dense asteroid ﬁ eld at high speed may both require Piloting Skill Tests, but the latter is clearly harder than the former. But how much harder is navigating an asteroid ﬁeld than landing at a spaceport? This is where Test Diffculty and the role of the GM both come into play. In some cases, the Difﬁ culty of a Test is pre-determined by the rules; in other cases, the GM should determine the appropriate modiﬁer. The Difﬁculty modiﬁer is applied to the governing Characteristic associated with the Test.
There will be instances where multiple factors make performing a particular action easier or more difﬁcult. If a situation calls for two or more bonuses or penalties, simply combine all modiﬁers together and apply the total to the Skill or Characteristic. The maximum modiﬁer that can be applied to a Skill Test or Characteristic Test is +60 or –60.
THE ROLE OF FATE
Explorers are unusual people—individuals with abilities, backgrounds, and experiences well beyond those of ordinary citizens of the Imperium. More than anything, the role of Fate in an Explorer’s life is what separates him from the masses. All Explorers begin play with a number Fate Points, which are determined at character creation. For some, these Fate Points represent destiny, a sign that the Emperor has marked them for greatness. For others, Fate represents simple luck.
USING FATE POINTS
Fate Points allow an Explorer to manipulate situations by mitigating bad results or turning a mishap into fortune. An Explorer has a limited pool of Fate Points, and when a Fate Point is spent, that pool is reduced by one. Spent Fate Points are restored at the beginning of the next gaming session, or possibly under special circumstances in the middle of a game session that the GM deems appropriate.
Spending one Fate Point allows for one of the following:
Re-roll a failed Test once. The results of the re-roll are ﬁnal.
Gain a +10 bonus to a Test. This must be chosen before dice are rolled.
Add an extra degree of success to a Test. This may be chosen after dice are rolled.
Count as having rolled a 10 for Initiative.
Instantly recover 1d5 Wounds.
BURN a Fate Point to save your life!