Floriks Fantastereien

Resolution Mechanic: Cheating the Devil

Cheating the Devil is a resolution mechanic for roleplaying games conceived in response to a challenge by Prismatic Wasteland. Take and and adapt as needed.

Before a contest, discuss goals and stakes as usual.

You need six-sided dice in two colours. Each contestant grabs two white and one red dice. Roll them simultaneously.

The sum of your roll is the value of your white dice, added up, minus the red die. Higher is better.

However, the contestant with the lowest sum now may offer a devil's bargain to the referee, i.e. something bad happening to their character, like losing an item, taking a wound or phobia, having a new enemy appear etc. If (after some negotiation) the referee accepts, this misfortune will definitely come true. However, the player may now remove their red die, bettering their result.

Other contestants may also decide to offer a devil's bargain to get rid of their red die. Always begin with the contestant with the lowest result. All devil's bargains proposed must be of the same degree of severity as the first one.

The contest is decided when no one with a red die in front of them wishes to propose a devil's bargain or nobody has a red die left. Highest sum wins.