A few questions about tests

Ok, a few things I’m not still quite clear on:

  1. Under what conditions (if any) is there an option to retest a failed test, in general terms? For example, say a PC tries to pick a lock and fails, and the GM decides to let the lockpicking fail (& adds a twist). After the twist is resolved, can the same PC try again, or is there some general BW-style “let it ride” rule in play? Or is that sort of thing up to the GM? If this is mentioned in the book, please point me towards the relevant section :slight_smile:

  2. A very common occurrence in “D&D”-style scenarios is the PCs searching for traps and/or secret doors. How should this best be managed, in general? If there is a trap or secret door there it’s fairly straightforward: decide on Ob, let them roll. But how about the (more common) case that there isn’t? Should I as GM just say “you find nothing” without incurring a test, or is there some other intended mechanism for this?

I was surprised to find no “Let it Ride” rule in the game, but then I noticed: each test has a HUGE impact on your resources. Each test means being closer to a condition, spending light sources, and risking earning a condition, breaking equipment or attracting a Wandering Monster, so trying to repeat a failed test is as risky as trying something new (only that doing something else might earn you a “Good Idea”).

Personally I’d go with the second choice, I think is somewhat cruel to have them testing for nothing.

Also remember that the procedure is:
-Player describes its character action and intent.
-GM declares if a roll is necessary, and in that case which skill/attribute should be tested.

I had a question popping out as I write this: does rerolling a skill triggered by an Instinct costs a turn/check? Or only the first roll has the Instinct benefit?

Stay cool :cool:

  1. There is no Let It Ride in Torchbearer. If a test is still relevant and possible after a twist is resolved, they can do it again.

  2. Tell them they don’t find anything and move on. No test, no turn.

Ok, thanks!

No problem!

I think it’s okay to use your instinct whenever it’s triggered, even if it’s for reattempting something. But remember, though the upside is that you save a turn and potentially earn a fate point, the downside is always that it’s hard to get help for tests triggered by instincts.

A couple further questions here that are related:

1) This comes out of the Secret Doors thing. When it comes to things like scavenging, is it okay to look for something even though it’s not prepared by the GM?

I understand that if there are no Secret Doors, there’s no test to be made, but with scavenging, it seems different. Like, as long as it makes sense in the context of the fiction a player can search for supplies or rations or oil or other things as long as they describe how and it makes sense. Those items don’t have to be placed by the GM. Do I have that right?

I mean, if the GM describes a completely bare room, I can’t see a player saying “I’m looking for oil in here. I feel around the walls and the floor.” In those cases I think it’s okay for the GM to say “You search for a while and don’t find anything.” Then again, the GM could call for an obscenely high obstacle, which is fun! The player can’t back out!

Instead, I think triggering a scavenging test is more along the lines of the GM describing an altar with burned down candles and the player saying, “I scrape the leftover wax for supplies to make candles later.”

If anybody has examples of scavenging tests that have come up in your games, I’d be grateful if you could share. We have a player whose instinct is “Always search for supplies when I have a moment,” so these situations are coming up a lot, and I’m having a weird time wrapping my head around it.

2) Also, does it always require a scavenging test to get supplies? Like if I need feathers of a giant raven for supplies, and we just fought off a bunch of giant ravens and feathers are everywhere, is it just a good idea to pick them up or is the GM going to call for a scavenging test to get the right ones or something?

  1. Grover, remember the overarching heuristic here: The players describe their actions and the GM calls for a test if it’s applicable. If there’s no applicable test, the GM doesn’t even have to say no! They can just move on.

  2. In general, yes. But sometimes a dungeon will have some really obvious supply-like objects. Let the players collect them if they describe it. It’s a small reward for attentive. smart play.

Packrats beware!