Damage and healing

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This article is DEPRECATED and saved for archival purposes only.

Some of this is the normal rules, some I have modified slightly.

Hit Points

Hit Points are generally a compromise between fast and easy gameplay and realism. A problem is naturally that real battle never work like Hit Points, so I'm taking a pragmatic view on the topic.

Hit Points are a combination of minor injuries, exhaustion, emotional shock and simple "battle luck" in a combat. Losing 90% of your Hit Points is not the same as having a sword stabbed through your lung, it's simply a game mechanic to show your tactical advantage is running out, and you know it. Whatever the case, at a negative level equal to your Constitution score, you ARE dead. Some of these are of course real injuries, but many more losses of hit points are not.

This also explains how hit points can regenerate so quickly; the loss of hit points only marginally represent actual injuries. In most cases they represent bruises and weariness rather than injuries.

Nonlethal damage is, however more physical in nature. It represents physical abuse that may take a lot less time to recover from than actual injuries.

In all, the topic is of course hard to specify, but it is a combat system that is a lot quicker and easier to use than some sort of location-based hits.

Lethal Damage Conversion

  • Receive as normal, but note Damage Conversion (non-magic AC converts its bonus to non-lethal).
  • Heals at slower rate if unattended.


Because of the damage conversion (and if the wounds are used), I have modified the healing rules as well.

Nonlethal Damage

  • Every 2 points of nonlethal damage recieved beyond the total available hit points cause 1 point of lethal damage.
  • Lethal damage is healed before nonlethal.
  • No nonlethal damage is recuperated if the character is physically active.
  • 1 per 2 hours is recuperated if taking it slow, such as moving at half speed or researching in a library.
  • 1 per hour is recuperated if specifically resting; not actively performing any other activity.
  • If 8 hours resting would heal more than 8 points of lethal damage, then resting will heal that amount of nonlethal damage instead of 8.
  • Magic healing does not heal one nonlethal damage per regular hit point healed.
  • If the character only has nonlethal damage, magic healing will restore 3 points of nonlethal damage per 2 points of magical healing.

Healing from Resting

  • Healing effects stack, unless otherwise noted. Numbers are rounded down to nearest whole number at a minimum of 1.
  • Sleeping/resting for 8 hours per day recuperates lost hit points.
  • DM can decide to give bonus HP for low lvl characters using good services.
  • DM can decide if partial rest (like 4 hours) still count for anything.
  • Whole day spent in bed (24 hours) recuperates +1 point per level*.
  • Carer: If another character cares (DC15 Heal) for the injured during the rest, the recuperation is increased by +1 point per level*.
  • Other recuperation modifiers:
    • 0.25 per lvl per "uncomfortable" rest (outside on an uncomfortable bed or in bad weather or sleeping in armour without the Endurance feat).
    • 0.50 per lvl per "low quality" rest (decent conditions outside or in indoors on low quality bed).
    • 0.75 per lvl per "average" rest (indoors on an average quality bed or outdoors in excellent camping conditions/bedding).
    • 1.00 per lvl per "good" rest (indoors with access to servants, bath, clean cloths etc or a staffed field hospital, receiving plenty of attention).
    • 1.25 per lvl per "excellent" rest (indoors in an extravagant setting or general treatment at a hospital - staff understands your needs but you are not specifically cared for).
    • 2.50 per lvl per "hospitalised" rest (in a specialised hospital where you are especially cared for). Does not stack with a carer.
    • Spending the time with a courtesan (if you are so capable) improves the recuperation by +0.5 per level*.

Carer - A person who competently aids the injured person. Includes change of bandages and/or soothing herbs etc. The carer will obviously not be able to sleep for the duration.

(*) - Applied after other modifiers.

Ability Damage

  • The same numbers as Healing and Resting, but not "per lvl".

Wound Healing

Wound damage is essentially the same as normal hit point loss, but hit point lost from wounds heal after any normal hit point losses are recuperated.


Death itself can be through shock, cardiac arrest, massive organ failure, asphyxiation or simply bleeding to death. The dying status represents one or all of these effects, while the shock status added by me specifically deals with shock only.

In this particular campaign setting, resurrection is very uncommon, so as to alleviate this, I've added a new spell, Resuscitation, which will work in very limited circumstances, more similar to a skilled paramedic of today than an actual Raise Dead spell.


I'm using Pathfinder's rules for dying in both Pathfinder and any 3.5 campaigns I run:

  • A dying creature can take no action.
  • On the creature's turn, it must make a Constitution check (not Fortitude).
    • The Con check is DC 10 + negative damage in these campaigns. Natural 20 is automatic success.
    • If the Con check is failed, she loses 1 hit point.
  • Heal check (DC15) stabilises a dying character.
  • If a dying creature has an amount of negative hit points equal or above its constitution score, it dies.


  • After the body dies, it takes 2 minutes + 2D10 rounds before the brain is irreparably dead also (even with decapitation). At that point, the soul leaves the body.
  • It's possible to cast spells on a dead body to heal wounds or to remove diseases or toxins.
  • Potions work on dead bodies because they are activated by the act of being put in a person's mouth rather than swallowing.
  • The spell Resuscitation can be cast on a body which has not suffered complete brain death.

House Rules* & Roleplaying nav.. (e)


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Damage Conversion