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Curse of nighmares and lack of Sleep


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Hello everybody,

I'm currently working on my campaign, and one of the PCs is likely to be cursed with very vivid and recurring nightmares and unable to sleep. I was thinking to roll 1D6 every morning:

  • 1 No nightmares. Able to sleep.
  • 2-3 Vivid nightmares, but able to sleep.
  • 4-6 Very vivid nightmares and unable to sleep.

And if unable to sleep, he/she has a -20% to all rolls the first day without sleep, -40% the second, -60% the third and so on. He/she also falls asleep in any suitable situation unless he/she succeeds in a CON roll x 5 the first day, x 4 the second, x 3 the third and so on. A night of sleep recovers 50%.

What do you think? By the way, I don't use SAN and I use simple fatigue. I doubt that rules about lack of sleep haven't been published...



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Your rule seems a bit tough to me. With a 50 % chance to be unable to sleep,

the character is very likely to suffer many strings of very bad luck and accor-

dingly low skill rolls - even five bad results in a row and a modifier of - 100 %

would not be extremely unlikely.

I would probably prefer a 5-6 result instead of the 4-6 result for a night of

very vivid nightmares, unless I wanted to make that character almost unplay-

able much of the time.

"Mind like parachute, function only when open."

(Charlie Chan)

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Plus, characters have to be able to sleep to HAVE nightmares. Dreaming, even bad dreaming, is essential to proper brain function. The lack of sleep would begin to wear down the victim in a number of ways other than physical exhaustion.

What about going into a deep sleep, having horrible dreams, and not being able to wake up? You could treat it like another dimension. The character could use his abilities normally in the dream world. Victory against opponents means he gets a night's rest and any dream damage received is healed when he wakes. Failure means he wakes up exhausted and weak. Any wounds received appear on his waking body. And if he dies in the dream? Well, a REALLY evil curse wouldn't have him die in real life. At least not immediately. He'd gradually waste away, losing a little CON or SAN or whatever at each loss.

Maybe there's a way for the victim's pals to enter the dream world with him to help him out. Or maybe it just seems that way, and the "pals" are really dream creatures out to misdirect and waylay him. You could have the other players portray the friends in the dream world either way.

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  • 3 weeks later...

The character won't be cursed since creation, he/she may be cursed during an adventure. But because he/she may be cursed for a while and I don't want to make it unplayable, I'll change it to 5-6.

What I meant when I said having very vivid nighmares and being unable to sleep was that you fall asleep, soon after you have a nightmare that wakes you up, and then you are unable to fall sleep for a while. And when you eventually manage, everything starts again. All in all, not a very restfull sleep.

I like Seneschal's idea, although not for this curse. Thank you all for your comments.

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