Fading Suns and Flaming Heresies
Whenever the outcome of an action is in doubt, the gamemaster calls for a goal roll (Also known as a Skill Roll). This roll is made using one 20-sided die. The player (or gamemaster, in the case of NPCs and environmental phenomena) must roll a score on this die that is equal to or less than the assigned goal number.
A player’s base goal number is determined by adding the character’s relevant characteristic trait rating to his skill trait rating. Thus, if a character wanted to fire a pistol at a foe, and the character had a Dexterity characteristic of 7 and a Shoot skill of 6, the player would need to roll “13” or less on the 20-sided die.
Things aren’t always that simple, however. In many cases, the goal roll is adjusted up or down by situational modifiers. Consider the case of the aforementioned pistol shot. All other things being equal, it’s easier to hit a dinosaur-sized foe than a rabbit-sized one. Thus, the gamemaster might assign a bonus to the player’s goal if his character was trying to shoot a rampaging T. Rex, and might assign a penalty if the character was firing at a speeding jackrabbit. With practice, gamemasters can easily assign an appropriate difficulty modifier to any action. These modifiers, in conjunction with the characters’ traits, allow any situation in the universe to be simulated.
Multiple bonuses and penalties may be levied against an action or actions; simply add and subtract until a final result is achieved. For example, a character attempts three simultaneous actions (-6 to goal number), all of which are easy (+4 to goal number). Each action takes a -2 penalty. Any die roll equal to or less than the goal number indicates a success, but a player whose action succeeds should remember the exact number rolled; this is important for calculating the subsequent effect roll (see here).