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The Bigger the Hole, the Harder to Get Through?


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Every time I skim through my copy of the BGB, this funny little example catches my eye:

Your character with SIZ 16 (passive) tries to crawl through a crack with SIZ 12 (active). In this case, the crack’s SIZ is restricting your character’s movement, so it is the active force (even though it would seem to be the other way around).

So knowing how the Resistance Table functions, it would seem to me, that the bigger you are, the easier it is to resist the effect of the hole to prevent you, and the bigger the hole is, the harder it is to get through. Big character vs. small hole is therefore easier than the other way around. I wonder what went on in the designers' minds when writing this? Is truly the very silly mistake I take it to be, or is there some hidden wisdom that I just can't grasp?

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Every time I skim through my copy of the BGB, this funny little example catches my eye:

So knowing how the Resistance Table functions, it would seem to me, that the bigger you are, the easier it is to resist the effect of the hole to prevent you, and the bigger the hole is, the harder it is to get through. Big character vs. small hole is therefore easier than the other way around. I wonder what went on in the designers' minds when writing this? Is truly the very silly mistake I take it to be, or is there some hidden wisdom that I just can't grasp?

It's not an error. The answer is right in the example. The hole SIZ is the active value and the character's SIZ is the passive, which means the hole is doing the influencing. In other words, the difficulty increases with the SIZ of the character, not the hole. If the hole is bigger than the character, there's no roll needed because there is no resistance, unless you commonly make PCs role to walk through doors. ;)

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In the resistance table active is the attacker, the one trying to affect the defender aka the passive. The roll is made by the attacker to see if it is able to pass the resistance and to affect the defender.

So if a POT 17 poison is trying to affect CON 15 character, chance is 60%. If CON is 13, chance is 70%. The smaller the passive characteristic, the easier to influence. The larger the active, the easier also.

So Character is passive, Hole is active. Hole rolls on the resistance table. If hole succeeds, affects Character, Character unable to pass through.

Example:

  • Char SIZ 10, Hole size 3. 15% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 10, Hole size 8. 35% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 10, Hole size 10. 50% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 10, Hole size 12. 60% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 10, Hole size 16. 80% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 10, Hole size >20. 100% chance to affect character.

  • Char SIZ 16, Hole size 3. 0% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 16, Hole size 8. 15% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 16, Hole size 10. 20% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 16, Hole size 12. 30% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 16, Hole size 16. 50% chance to affect character.
  • Char SIZ 16, Hole size 20. 70% chance to affect character.

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You're overthinking it. The successful outcome is "character squeezes through the hole" not "hole resists character." The player is making this roll, in most cases, not the GM. The resistance table produces the target number for that roll, which is the important thing, not the semantics of active vs passive. Those are really just axes on a table, determining whether a value increases towards auto success or auto failure.

So a SIZ 10 character has a 15% chance of squeezing through a SIZ 3 hole.

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Yes, normally a resistance roll determines the effect of the active party, so a successful poison roll means the character is poisoned. However, in this case, the result means the character passes through the hole.

It's a bit odd but this is how squeezes have worked in RQ since the Dyksund Caverns, in RQ2.

I would only roll if the SIZ of the hole was less than or equal to the character;s SIZ, so SIZ 12 character vs SIZ 13 hole means he squeezes through without a roll. It makes things easier.

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The wording "...the crack’s SIZ is restricting your character’s movement..." is misleading - it is actually allowing.

No need to make an exception, I'd say - if a character with smaller SIZ than the hole failed (or rather, the hole failed to allow them), it could represent some of their equipment snagging.

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