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Typically used with: Endurance.

In short: take a hit. If Dodge gets you out of the way of damage, Guard's your buddy once you've screwed that up.

If you fail a Guard Roll, the amount by which you miss the mark is the amount of HP you lose. A Critical Failure of a Guard Roll actually causes harm to any armor you're wearing. See the Combat chapter for more information.


Most of the time, a Guard Roll is used against an incoming attack by a moving opponent. However, there are nasty obstacles out there that can cause a character harm, too. Traps and other damage-causing hazards have a fixed Damage DL. A very well-equipped and tough hero might be able to fall in a pit trap and have the metal spikes below clang harmlessly off her armor.


You can use a Gymnastics check to soften a fall, removing one foot of distance per point of the roll. Whatever difference remains calls for a Guard roll. Make a Guard check excluding worn armor (unless you have some kind of miracle armor that protects against falls). You can turn 10 feet of falling damage into one step down the Knockout Track per every 5 points of your Guard Roll (maximum 25). Anything left over is deducted from your HP.

Falling Example
Drinnin and Skorna are knocked from a cliff ledge 90 feet above a rocky beach.

Shrieking and flailing, Drinnin rolls 16 for Gymnastics. He's left with 74. He crits for a whopping 35 on his Guard Roll. Since he made over 25, this converts 50 feet into 5 steps down the Knockout Track. 24 remains, which he takes as damage. Drinnin smacks into the rocks below, knocked out cold, but clinging onto life with 6 HP.

Skorna, on the other hand, rolls 20 for Gymnastics. She's left with 70. She makes 19 on her Guard Roll. This converts 30 feet into 3 steps down the Knockout Track. 40 remains. Sadly, Skorna only has 30 HP, so she hits the rocks like a trashbag full of ham.

Opposed Rolls

Guard Rolls are used against another character's Damage Roll or Casting Roll.