Thursday, August 09, 2007

Great Random Charts from RPG History, vol IV.

I've had a heck of time formating this one for optimum online presentation. I eventually just said to hell with it and published as-it.

The Arduin Grimoire Critical Hit Table

% Die Roll Hit Location Results Point Damage
01-02 Head, frontal Brain penetrated, immediate death 4d8
03-04 Neck, frontal Voicebox ruined, total voice loss. (permanent) 1d8
05-06 Wrist Hand severed, bleed to death in 1d8 minutes 3d6
07-08 Chest or back Impalement, weapon stuck there 3d10
09-10 Side 1d5 ribs broken 1d3 per rib
11-15 Leg Major artery cut, bleed to death in 1d10 minutes 1d8
16-20 Arm Major artery cut, bleed to death in 1d12 minutes 1d6
21-25 Foot, rear Achilles tendon cut, fall immediately (permanent) 1d3
26-30 Fingers 1d5 severed 1 each
31-32 Toes 1d5 severed 3 per two
33-34 Face Eye ruined or torn out (permanent), unable to fight for 1d10 rounds 1d6
35-36 Forehead Gashed, blood in eyes, can’t see or fight for 1d10 rounds 1d3
37-38 Crotch/chest Genitals/breasts torn off, immediate shock induced coma, death in d4 minutes 3d6
39-40 Head, side Ear taken off, 50% hearing loss, -2 charisma 1d3
41-42 Buttocks Buttock torn off, fall, shock induced coma for 3d10 minutes, permanent –3 dex, ½ speed 4d4
43-44 Head, general Stunned, 1d10 rounds no fighting 1d2
45-46 Head, general Stunned, 1d6 minutes no fighting 1d4
47-48 Head, general Minor concussion, Stunned, 1d10 minutes no fighting 1d6
49-50 Head, general Moderate concussion, unconscious 1d6 rounds, confused & groggy for 6d10 minutes 1d8
51-55 Head, general Major skull fracture, unconscious 2d10 minutes, amnesia: 1-60 lasts 2d12 hours, 61+ permanent 1d10
56-60 Neck, frontal Throat cut, death in 1d3 minutes 1d8
61-65 Arm Torn off (roll % for how much, starting at wrist), bleed to death in 1d3 rounds 4d6
66-70 Leg Torn off (roll % for how much, starting at wrist), fall, bleed to death in 1d3 rounds 4d12
71-75 Chest Heart pierced, immediate death 1d10
76-80 Back, lower Spine ruined, roll d6: 1. 100% paralyzed 2. Left side paralyzed 3. Right side 4. Waist up 5. Waist down 6. Death in one minute 2d10
81-85 Face Both eyes ruined or torn out (permanent), unable to fight for 1d10 rounds, permanently blinded 2d6
86-90 Face Nose ruined, -6 cha, stunned, breathing problems (-2 on con checks involving endurance), bad speech prblems for 1d12 months (relearning to speak properly) 1d8
91-94 Head, general Nothing apparent, later problems when brain hemmorhages in 1d10 days, 50/50 chance of death or permanent insanity 1d2
95 Guts ripped out 20% chance of tangling feet, die in 1d10 minutes 2d8
96 Head, top Skull caved in, major brain damage, all mental faculties permanently halved, 50-100% memory destroyed, -8 cha 2d6
97 Chest Lung punctured, internal damage, halve str & con (permanent) 1d12
98 Neck Head torn off, immediate death 5d10
99 Body Split in twain, immediate death 10d10
100 Head Entire head pulped and splattered over wide area, irrevocable death Total

Hargrave indicates that he only uses this chart for one strike in 400, which I interpret to indicate that one should use this chart after a to-hit roll of natural 20 followed by a crit confirm roll that is also a natural 20. We used this rule for a couple years in my D&D games and not gotten many gruesome crits. But the threat remains.


  1. Anonymous11:15 AM

    My memory may be ailing me, but wasn't the entry you have as "Buttocks Buttock" originally "Buttocks/Breast" or something along those lines? I remember being captivated by the logic. Could be a difference between printings ...

    In my infamous GURPS Arduin document, I included a "One Buttock" disadvantage takeable at chargen, for those who'd already been down that road :)

  2. I'm pretty sure you're thinking of entry 37-38, the "Oops! You just lost your dick/boob!" entry.

    And yeah, it's been years since I read your GURPS Arduin stuff on the Blue Room, but I definitely remember the One Buttock disadvantage and the reference to "Fighter Groupies".

  3. Why does the brain penetration entry that results in immediate death also list bonus damage?


    I don't really care for critical hit tables, or even critical hits, really. They don't fit my play style. :)

    (For fun reading, though, the critical hit tables in the ICE game Star Strike are best.)

  4. I prefer this to the Living Steel, where shot in the eye with laser was a stunning result, because lasers had low penetration, so they couldn't shoot through bulkheads.

  5. Anonymous8:45 PM

    D'oh. Absolutely right; I was confusing those two (but remain captivated by the logic).

    Now if only Blogger will let me post this comment ... I've tried four times and I have this dread fear that the earlier four will pop up later on :(

  6. Why does the brain penetration entry that results in immediate death also list bonus damage?

    Could be an insult-to-injury thing. Or maybe for Hargrave hit point damage and crit damage run parallel, as in RM, where you can have all your 'concussion hits' healed but still have a broken arm.

  7. Anonymous6:23 PM

    I still use this Critical chart (from the old "little" Arduin books). It seems deadly, but then, so is combat.

    My players complain about it when they lose an arm or something, but it also makes the game more interesting. And besides, the complaits stop whrn they roll "pierce heart, dies instantly" while firing a bow at a hydra. Great stuff!

    And by the way, the reason they list damage for "Brain Penetration" is for if your character is two-headed, or has fantastic regeneration powers (and you need to know how many rounds it takes to grow back). Let us not forget that in Arduin, playing a 2 headed troll was certainly possible!

  8. We used that crit chart on *any* natural 20. :)

    Let's just say that any adventurer worth his salt had a missing ear, eye, a few fingers. And *everyone* had their nose ruined dozens of times!

    We were a little nervous about that head injury that resulted in "later problems", but what's later problems compared to head pulped and splattered over a wide area?!