Forbidden Lands

Well, it could be - in the same way that RQ could be. If you are knocked down to 0 STR AND then take a critical hit roll of 65 or 66 (on 2d6 read tens/units, so 1 in 18 chance) you can get instant death. If not then it's up to the rest of the party to sort you out, pretty much as per lots of other RPGs.
You can also let your armour take the hits for you, which means you will have to get it repaired later on somehow. (I don't remember this rule in Mutant:Year Zero. From reading FL the other day it seemed to me at the time that the armour rule was written a bit oddly, but I can't remember it enough at the moment to comment)
BTW, we played 10+ sessions of Mutant and had no deaths, although there were times when people were broken (i.e. had an attribute go to zero) and it required some party scrambling to get them back up. From a quick read through FL looks pretty similar
But every time someone is broken in Forbidden Land they roll on the Critical tables which have things like:

Cleft skull – You die immediately. –
Decapitation – Your head leaves your body.
Broken neck – Paralyzed from the neck down.
Heart attack Your heart stops, and you die of pure fright.
or worse still the TPK results on the magic miscast table

"Your magic attracts a demon from another dimension. "
"The spell triggers a magical disease with a Virulence of 2D6. You and everyone within ARM’S LENGTH of you for the next Quarter Day are exposed to the contagion"
which are both campaign enders.
Yes, that's why I said if you roll 65 or 66 on the Critical table you can get instant death...same is true of RuneQuest, RoleMaster, DragonQuest and many other games - critical hit to the head...why is that a campaign ender? Don't run campaigns that depend on certain characters...

The disease one doesn't seem to bad to me - average virulence 7. You get to roll to resist using endurance before falling sick and it drains Strength and Agility, so your Endurance doesn't fall lower. Even if you do fail the initial sickness roll you don't start losing attribute points for a day, and you could potentially lose 1/day after that, so you have time to get somewhere for help. Magic will heal lost Str/Agil points. Virulence 7 will roll about 1 success each time. If you succeed you are no longer sick. Druids get Healing Hands, Nature's Cure at Rank 1, if you are cared for by someone they can roll the sickness rolls instead of you using Healing skill vs Virulence. Healing Potions can help, etc.

The Demon one - Ok so a demon is summoned. That doesn't mean it's just going to attack the PCs straight out, ever read Earthsea? It could set up all kinds of unexpected plots, or maybe the players kill it quickly, or maybe it kills them. Demons have weaknesses too, time for some lore finding or questioning NPCs for information. It's not an instant "you all die" because a Demon appeared

BTW, You roll on Critical tables in Mutant:Y0 too...see p 91
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Staff member
Sounds to me like a game where one should be happy to embrace TPK but that it isn't a campaign ender. So the campaign runs independent of the characters.
BTW if anyone is bothered about the casting mishaps, look at "Safe Casting" on p118 (I think). It seems that if your talent level is higher than the rank of the spell, you can cast safely by reducing the dice you roll by the difference including down to ZERO dice, in which case you don't need to roll and just get the base effect. Of course you won't get any overcast, but you won't get any mishaps either.

EDIT: also apparently grimoires and scrolls let you cast spells as though they are one rank lower e.g. if you have Mend Wound (Rank 2) on a scroll, you cast if using the scroll as a Rank 1 spell
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First Age

D&D h@ck3r
Staff member
Burn brightly, fiercely, and you just might win through and see out your days. Own your character fully.

And yet, as with so many on the edge games, you could end up drowned in a puddle.
Ok, after a quick peruse I think I've worked out how you can minimise spell casting risk early on for certain spells. You will need:

  • Relevant spell casting Talent at Level 2 (you can get this at character generation)
  • A scroll or grimoire of the spell you want to cast (you can create one of these after you've cast the spell once)
  • ingredients as listed in the spell e.g. Healing herbs
So, to cast a Rank 1 spell e.g. Healing Hands:
  • Use the grimoire to reduce the Rank of the spell by 1. So a Rank 1 spell becomes Rank 0 (I haven't seen anything saying you can't reduce below 1, BTW)
  • Use 2 Willpower to cast the spell at Power Level 2.
  • Normally you'd have to roll 2d now for overcharge/mishap, BUT, because your Spell Talent rank is 2 higher, you can cast safely and reduce the number of dice by 2, to zero, to get the base effect of the spell at Power Level 2. You get no overcharge, but no mishap either.
  • Using the ingredients give you +1 Power Level, so you cast at Power Level 3 (this will cure a disease up to Virulence 8, for example)
Takes a bit of set up, you have to have the Talent at at least Rank 2, prepare a scroll and have some ingredients, but not too bad. If you are prepared to take a bit of risk you could cast at PL 3, rolling 1d for overcharge/mishap and get PL 4 which will cure any disease up to Virulence 11. If you are lucky on the 1d you might even get PL 5 (3 from PL, +1 for overcharge, +1 for ingredients).

ta-da! (Assuming I've got it right!)