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I think I'm going to be sick...

How often do people say this in roleplaying game sessions? Well OK the players did once but that was your homebrewed beer, the characters...they don't? Able to face hurricanes, bottomless pits and the lurgi and still eat a hearty fried breakfast? Not any more.

The following rules are based on the RuneQuest percentage roll system. A special is 20% of that required to succeed, a critical 5%, and a fumble the opposite of a critical. Thus

Roll required=60%, Special=12%, Critical=3%, Fumble=99%.
A 'CON roll' is CONstitution times five as a percentage.

Hardly ever sick at sea

When a character first goes to sea make an initial CON roll. This determines how good a sailor the character is: record the result.
Critical Natural Never roll
Special Good Only roll in storms
Success Average Only roll in rough weather
Failure Poor Always roll
Fumble Rotten Always roll at CON*2

CON rolls are made thereafter when putting to sea and whenever the sea state worsens. If the weather does not worsen for a week then a roll can be made for which only improvements count.
A failure causes queasiness (-10% on most activities), a fumble means illness, throwing up etc (-20%).
The above applies to ships. For small boats treat as one step better, eg a 'Poor' sailor becomes 'Average'.

EXAMPLE: Although the sea is calm Daisy is a Poor sailor so as soon as the ship leaves harbour her player makes the roll - and fails. Daisy declines the stew and sticks to ship's biscuits.
A week later and still at sea another roll can be made - a fumble! However as the result cannot be worse her player can ignore the roll.
The following day a gale blows up. This time the roll succeeds and to the surprise of her companions the fresh air perks Daisy up and it's her turn to laugh as one of them makes a run for the leeward rail.

Jump! Jump!

As above an initial CON roll is required to determine how heights affect a character.
Critical Fearless Never roll
Special Good head for Heights Only roll when surprised: opening a door and finding a 100 foot drop into the piranha filled castle moat
Success Normal As above, and roll when making a climbing roll
Failure Nervous of heights As above, and roll when standing on narrow ledges even if not moving
Fumble Vertigo Any heights require a roll

The vertigo roll itself is an INT roll (more properly WILL if your game system has that kind of characteristic). A failure means the character cannot cross the narrow plank, climb any further, whatever until a successful roll is made. A fumble causes the character to feel dizzy, move away from the edge or if this is impossible (half way up a cliff) to freeze. Experience and training can help overcome this disability: the vertigo roll cannot be worse than a character's climbing skill.

EXAMPLE: Silicon Microchip the Dwarf has INT 13, Climb 75% and is nervous of heights. The mountain path the adventurers are following starts to wind up a cliff. Silicon would normally be on an INT*5 = 65% chance of not feeling bad about this, but his Climb skill is better so he rolls at that percentage to test for Vertigo.
Silicon's player fails the roll. The GM rules that Silicon can continue provided he keeps close to the cliff face and doesn't look over, so Silicon fails to see the lurking Cliff Toad before it grabs him.


For each 5° C below zero or fraction thereof two pips of die damage per complete hour of exposure, eg -14°C = D6. Die size limit is D6. Evenly distributed to hit locations.
Add two pips if wet, four pips if in wet clothes. Add one pip per wind level. Add one/two pips if active.
Clothes subtract: thin=2, ordinary=4, winter=8, hitech=12?
Winter furs have the encumbrance of stiff leather, protect as soft leather.
Negative cold damage is permanent, otherwise recovery when out of cold at 1HP on each location per turn. Overall HP<3 = unconscious.

Poison and Disease

Knowledge of Disease.
On RuneQuest's own world of Glorantha diseases are caused by disease spirits. While these exist in Midgard illnesses of the more conventional kind are more often encountered. Visits by off-worlders and research by Gods has given civilised areas of Midgard a better idea of how to cope with disease than medieval Earth.
It is generally known that diseases are caused by 'things' too small to see, transferred from an infected person. This can be through the air or by touch or by indirect touch. Cleaning can wash away infection, and heat (eg boiling water) destroys the 'things'. Any alchemist or barber/surgeon or shaman should be able to distinguish between locally occuring diseases.
Cures include the use of natural medicines (eg cochina for tick fever) and specific magic (eg Purify Blood).

Hobgoblin Poison is a systemic nerve poison derived from a fungus. If a poison smeared weapon causes damage roll for luck (POW*3) to see if the poison gets into the bloodstream. If it does, three rounds later roll CON vs POT 10. Success reduces POT to 5.
This poison reduces DEX by the POT level at SIZ 10. Adjust for actual size by 1 per SIZ point, eg for SIZ 8 DEX is -12 or -7, for SIZ 15 DEX is -5 or no effect. At DEX=0 the victim collapses and must make a CON*5 save or die from heart failure.
Recovery is at 1 DEX point per turn. 'Negative' DEX counts for this purpose. If DEX reached zero then 1 point is lost permanently.
Antidote is a level 3 potion. It lasts for 1 turn and can be drunk beforehand. It excuses the victim from making effect rolls and speeds up recovery to 1 DEX per MR.

Tick Fever is caught from the bite of a bloodsucking tick found in tropical lands [it is caused by a parasite in liver and bloodstream]. Onset is D4 hours after being bitten. Symptoms are chills and fever. Save each hour on permanent CON*5 to avoid losing a point of temporary CON. CON*2 on the roll is required to break the fever. CON=0 is death. CON rolls are reduced if not resting.
Once the fever is broken recovery is at 1 CON point per day if resting, but for each 5 CON points (ignore fractions) 1 point is lost permanently.
An extract of the bark of a tropical tree (Cochina, found in S Morn) increases the recovery roll to CON*4. It has side effects: nausea, cramp, CON*5 to avoid, skills -20% if fail. On CON*1 the disease is cured. This remedy is known in S Morn but not generally in the North.
Tick Fever will return every D6 weeks unless the parasite is removed. The goddess Ha'lifa has developed a Purify Blood divine spell that does this, as well as curing other diseases.

Water of Death is similar to dysentery. After D4 hours diarrhoea starts, followed in severe cases by vomiting and cramps. Lose 1 temporary CON per turn, try for CON*1 each turn to halt loss. CON 0 = death. Recovery takes D3+3 days, and is complete. The treatment is a Level 1 potion (1p to make), commonly made in large batches by alchemists, a mixture of salts and sugar to replace loss of water and vital essences. Water of Death is transferred in faecal matter.

Plague is similar to the Earth type. It is known to be carried by rats [actually their fleas] as well as humans. Symptoms are headache, vomiting, high fever, black swellings. Roll on CON*5 every six hours, fail and lose 1 temporary CON, CON 0 = death. If still alive after five days recover, or if CON*1 rolled at any point. Recovery is 1 CON per two days. It is thought [wrongly] that this is an airborne disease.
A faster acting form (purple plague) affects the blood, lose 2 CON each hour, try for CON*5 critical every two hours. Victims turn deep purple. It is carried by touch or through the air. Fortunately this form does not spread widely as all its victims die before they can travel far! Purify Blood will cure this, but not the more common form which spreads through the lymphatic system.
The solution to plague is to kill the rats and quarantine human victims. Rat poison is L3 powder (6p to make). The Gods say they 'cannot' provide a cure for black plague: divine politics is suspected.

Spotted Dick is a venereal disease. The spots are hard red itchy nodules in both sexes, these last 1-4 weeks and then fade. After 1-3 years the secondary symptoms emerge: twitching and loss of muscle control followed by insanity in 50% of cases. The cure is 'Balm of Set', a foul smelling ointment rubbed on the nodules which itches even worse. It is L5 (15p).
A luck POW*5 roll will avoid infection, a CON*5 will avoid secondary symptoms, with the Balm anything but a CON*5 fumble will cure.
Infecting a citizen with Spotted Dick is a serious offence.

Pregnancy is not a disease, but something PCs may wish to avoid. Morning after pills are L3 (6p to make), a POW*5 fumble and they fail. A longer term option is 'Water of Isis', a L3 potion which gives similar protection until the next bleeding. It is also unfortunately (CON*5 save) a strong laxative. Isis worshippers get this free at Temple ceremonies.
In country areas there is a bitter tasting herbal drink that aborts early (<3 months) pregnancies.
Midgard Christianity does not forbid any of the above, there being ample evidence that the soul only attaches to the body at birth.
Without precautions there is an 18% chance of pregnancy each month. Around 12% of pregnancies result in spontaneous abortions. For more try the Guide Creators Page which includes a Complete Guide to Unlawful Carnal Knowledge.

Childhood Diseases are similar to Earth: several common non-fatal varieties and several that are rarer but more dangerous. The practice of deliberately exposing children to minor diseases while they are healthy is widespread. Civilised under ten mortality rate is about 1:20.

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