How to do Fighty Stuff

When violence is imminent, everyone rolls their Initiative Attribute and performs actions in order, highest to lowest.

Combat is in rounds of 3 seconds long and allows for a single action without penalty. This can be anything from shooting someone to running across the room or diving for cover.

Multiple Actions – The first action gets no penalty. Every action after that labors under a cumulative –1 Skill step. If this penalty reduces a Skill die to nothing, the action can’t be tried. If an action doesn’t require a roll of the dice, such as running, it still increases the penalty for any other actions performed after it in that turn.

Free Actions – Looking around, hollering short phrases, drop to the ground, etc are all considered free and do not count towards the actions in the round…within reason.


  • Players move 15’ per round walking, and that is a free action.
  • Hustling is 2x the character’s movement and counts as an action.
  • Running is 2x + Attribute + Athletics/Running and is 2 actions.
  • Getting up from prone is an action, attacking while you’re down is a -2 Step Attribute penalty. Lying prone is light cover.


  • Surprised – base flat-footed difficulty rating to hit you is Easy (3).
  • Innate Defense – reaction, Agility roll is the difficulty rating to hit you.
  • Block/Parry – Melee only, reaction, difficulty rating to hit you is Attribute + Applicable Skill + Traits.
  • Dodge – Melee or ranged (not gunfire), reaction, difficulty rating to hit you is Agility + Athletics/Dodge
  • All-Out Defense – Takes your entire round, do an above defense (Dodge, Block) at +2 Step Bonus on the skill.


Light Cover+4half the target is concealed
Medium Cover+8more than half the target is concealed
Heavy Cover+12most of the target is concealed
Total Cover+16only a tiny portion is visible


RangeSkill Modifier
Point Blank (10 ft.)+1 Skill Step
Shortno modifier
Medium-2 Skill Step
Long-4 Skill Step

Called Shot

TypeSkill ModifierEffect
Limb-1 Step+2 step damage, Average Endurance vs immobilization
Vital (Head)-2 Steps+4 step damage, Average Endurance vs KO
Miniscule (Heart)-3 Steps+6 step damage, Average Endurace vs death

Combat Actions

  • Aim – Full round action, +3 Skill Step/round for up to 3 rounds.
  • All-out Attack – only attack actions for the turn (no defense actions), +2 skill step modifier on attacks
  • Disarm – -2 Skill Step to hit for melee, -4 Skill Step for ranged. Success = target makes Hard Agility + Willpower or they drop their weapon.
  • Feint – melee only, often Alertness + skill, vs Alertness/Intelligence + Perception/Intuition, target can only use innate defense against the next attack
  • Grapple – Agility + Unarmed to establish hold, target must win opposed Agility + Strength, foe is Easy target, can also be used to push target or knock them prone
  • Automatic Weapons: Burst (3 bullets, 1 action, +1 step damage), Autofire (third of clip, full round action, +4 step damage)

Combat Rules

The attacker fires three bullets using one attack action against one target. The weapon’s damage die advances by +1 step. Burst fire counts as one action, but you can’t do it more than twice each turn. Called shots can’t be bursts. You can’t benefit from aiming.

Autofire’s a single attack roll that uses up a third of the weapon’s ammo against a single target. The weapon’s damage die gains a +4 step. You can’t take any other actions in the same turn as you use autofire, which includes dodging or moving. Autofire can’t be used for called shots or benefit from aiming.

Spray fire uses as many bullets as autofire but directs them at an area roughly 5–10 feet wide, rather than a single target. The attack is a single sustained action. Everybody in the area or who moves through the area until the shooter’s next turn has to defend against the attack. Cover bonuses to Difficulty are halved (rounding up) in the face of spray fire. Any successful hit gains a +2 step to the weapon’s damage die. Like autofire, spray fire prevents the shooter from taking any other actions in the turn and can’t be used for called shots or gain benefits from aiming.

If the shooter’s rendered unconscious, knocked down, disarmed, or otherwise prevented from standing and unloading his weapon, your target area stops being dangerous to enter or move through. This attack reduces visibility penalties by –2, since you’re not really targeting anything.

Getting Hurt

  • Determining Basic Damage: Attack – Defense = Basic Damage, split evenly between wounds and stun (stun favored for odd numbers).
  • Determining Weapon Damage – Listed for the weapon, rolled and added to the Basic Damage.
  • Reduce the resulting damage by Armor (only if applicable, see Called Shot) and PP spent to reduce damage by the target.
  • If the total Stun + Wounds is > than the target’s LP, they must roll an Average Endurance (Vitality + Willpower) or pass out.
  • If the total Wounds the target has taken is > half his LP, he is seriously wounded and suffers a -2 Step Attribute penalty on all tasks.
  • If the total Wounds taken exceeds the total Life Points, the character is dying and must make an Endurance roll every minute.


  • The character can “shake off” Stun Damage once a day by rolling a Vitality or Willpower die and remove that much stun.
  • Rest/sleep removes 1 stun/hour.
  • If you’re “on the mend”, Wounds heal at a rate of 1 Wound per 2 days.

Extraordinary success on attacks If a shot is an extraordinary success (7 over the required value), the target must make an average Endurance (Vitality + Willpower) roll. If successful, they take the damage normally. If they fail…

  • Basic Damage – they also take a debilitating injury (broken limb, gut shot, etc) which hinders them until treated
  • Stun Damage – they drop to the ground instantly, unconscious, and take Shock = Stun

How to do Fighty Stuff

Out in the Black elisabeth