There are two rating systems to identify the general wear-and-tear a character endures over the course of his travels. The Health, or HP, rating determines the amount of physical damage he has received. The Stamina, or ST, rating determines his level of tiredness.
Health is measured by HP, hit points; every time a character takes damage through some means, he loses a certain number of HP. There are two types of damage: standard, and critical. The difference deals with healing time; standard damage is dealt by heavy, blunt objects, and causes bruising and swelling which, while painful, are neither fatal nor, in the long run, particularly debilitating. Contrasted with this is critical damage; critical damage takes far longer to heal. Critical damage is dealt by cutting weapons, fire, and any other such means so designated; it is the bane of active characters, because while even the most severe non-critical beating can be healed in a matter of days, a simple knife wound can easily last weeks. Blunt and critical damage is handled differently between PCs and NPCs; PCs take such damage as perscribed above; for NPCs, blunt damage disappears as soon as combat ends, while critical damage will remain on that NPC for the duration of the game. This is merely done to lessen the number of variables, and is not meant to signify anything.
All characters begin the game with 15 HP. As the general damage on a character increases, the less able he will be to take even the simplest action, as both pain and physical impairment will affect all his statistics. When the character has taken a certain amount of damage, the total score, and thus the success rate, for all his actions will decrease by a set amount. This is, of course, temporary, but can be quite debilitating until the character can recover. Furthermore, it is doubly hurtful because both the normal and the critical HP levels carry with them their own penalties. Statistic loss is assigned as per the diagram below:
Thus, if Rhea had only 6 normal HP left, and 11 critical HP, she would be at -3 to all her actions. If she had only 1 of each, she would be at -10.
Whether a character, upon reaching 0 HP, is unconscious or dead depends on the type of damage he has taken; so long as one point of that damage is blunt, the character is not dead. That is, only critical damage can kill a character. However, once a character has dropped to unconscious by normal damage, all normal damage he takes thereafter, instead of being recorded as normal damage, simply transforms one of the previous normal points taken into a critical point; it is thus possible to kill someone with any type of weapon. A character who is unconscious can take no action, and his Strength is reduced to 1 for the purposes of absorbing damage. Armour still has its normal effect, but attacks against a prone opponent are made at 15 difficulty.
The Stamina system is far more versatile and less structured than the Health system. Whereas HP measures solely physical damage, ST measures both mental and physical exhaustion. More than anything else, ST serves as an indicator of willpower; it is required to ignore the pain of damage, to perform exceptional feats, to cast certain spells which carry with them great mental strain, or to simply continue lugging around 150 lbs. of equipment from place to place without rest. There are two kinds of ST loss, which correspond more or less to the two kinds of HP loss. When ST loss is inflicted, it is likewise said to be either critical or standard loss; when ST is willfully spent, is said to be either "used" or "burnt", depending on whether a standard or critical loss is incurred, respectively.
Characters start the game with a ST equal to 10 + (2 × Endurance), which will rise or fall as Endurance rises or falls throughout the game (except when Endurance falls as a result of stat loss by a low HP score or Encumbrance).
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