When you get damaged what happens is that a particular injury has occurred on your body. At this point some various things happens.

First of all it is a matter of if you notice and are aware of this injury. We have all, for example, found a splinter in our fingers. When the splinter enters beneth our skin we do not always notice it but at a later time, when an infections has started, we do notice it. An opposite example is when we slam our toes accidentally into the leg of a table or some other furniture. It hurts immediately and all our attention is focused on this injury.

When in the heat of battle, I imagine, some other rules apply. When we are completely immersed in an activity and where the consequences of our outcomes has strong meaning for us, we tend to be better at keeping our attention focused on the thing that we do even if we are injured.

An example is when you watch football. If a player is hurt by some tackle, and he sees that there still is a chance to reach the ball and perhaps score, he will ignore the injury and continue running. If the football player instead sees that there is no chance to reach the ball he will fall like a ragdoll and focus all his attention on the injury and the pain.

The above is a way to delay the injury and it is most probable that there is a limit to what injuries we can delay. We cannot for example delay the injury of a decapitation, as we instantly die. (Oh, what I would give to get a glimpse of what goes on in the mind of a freshly decapitate head!)

What we have here is the notion of delayed injury, however, an actual injury also has to be determined. What does it mean for example to get your arm bitten by a rabid wolf? Or getting a spear through your stomach? Or your finger cut off by a sword? Or getting a blunt mace on your ribs?

When the rabid wolf bites your arm it is of outmost imprtance to determine if the wolf gets through the protection, such as cloth or steel plates. Shoud he get through the wolf will surely rip through skin and flesh and possibly damage internal organs, such as nerve cells or even bones. Secondarily the rabid wolf will possibly spread a diceise, making you weaker and weaker progressivly, should your immune system not resist it.

So let us say that you are not protected when the wolf bites. To ignore the pain from this would take a tough son of a bitch, if it even is possible, but I sure it is. For the moment lets say we do notice the pain and we focus our attention on the pain. Because of this we will lose our rational faculties and in a fashion of panic try to get loose. This will for sure just make the injury worse, as the wolf’s theeth is in our flesh and throthing our arm here and there in an attempt to get lose will for sure rip more tendons and nerves than would be done other wise.

Let us now say that we do keep our rational faculties intact and we are for the moment able to analyse the situation, what is the best way to make the injury as low as possible? Physically it would be best to, with the arm, follow the movement of the wolf’s head movement. This is because we would then not oppose the force and instead follow the same direction of the already applied force from the wolf’s head movement. Now, this would be an incredibly difficult task to be successful in. I assume the wolf’s head movement is rather chaotic and fast.

The previous appoach does not seem likely. If we instead would determine that as long as the wolf has a grip around our arm, we would not be able to get loose, logically we would have to find a way to get loose. One way I can think of is to hurt the wolf and I assume, again, that if we manage to poke the wolf with sufficient force in the eyes, the wolf would for a brief period losen the grip around the arm. This is our way to our arm’s freedom.

But what if we do not keep our rational senses, ie focusing our attention on the pain and panic, is it still possible to perform an eye poking feat? I think so. Instinctively we would want to get lose and it would be fully possible to sub consciously make the decision that poking the wolf in the eyes is a good idea. Such a feat would happen instantly without consideration and would probably go faster than if we would spend time analysing the situation.

In the above cases it can be seen that the injury from the bite of a rabid wolf can vary between a flesh wound and your death. For should you get free directly by poking the eyes out it would be a flesh wound and should you panic and not get lose, the wolf would eventually kill you.

Now, the feat where we poke out the eyes can be substituted with other various feats, such as sticking a knife, dagger, sword in the side of the wolf. Clubbing the head or some body part with a blunt object. Provided you have the weapon ready or accessible. But what this feat is about, is really to determine if the act is instinctual or rational and if the action happens at all, and in the end to determine the damage done. Funnily enough we could bypass this whole dilemma by equipping a steel gauntlet and when the wolf jumps at us we hold our armoured arm out so that the wolf bites it. Then there would be very minor damage as the wolf would in no way be able to penetrate the steel. This is also how the police train with their dogs. They equip themself with kevlar or some other durable material and are so free from harm.

So, how do we determine the damage done in gaming terms? The idea so far is to track states the character is in. If the character has been bitten by a rabid wolf the consequences of that will be tracked. The character then has to make various Checks to see how it affects him or her. An Endurance Check will determine if the character can continue as normal or if penalties to Attention, Attack Rolls etc will incur. The Endurance Check is made when the wolf is biting the arm and after the incident is over. A Consitution Check will determine if any of the physical faculties will be affected, such as lowered Strength, Agility, Endurance until the wound is healed. A Will Check will determine if you are able to ignore the pain or not and so be able to chose freely what and where the Attention should be focused.

This damage is all there is, and no subtraction of Health Points. Instead you die if an injury, at any moment, accumulated or single injuries, makes you die. Decapitation simply kills you, no turning back. Blowing up from an explotion also kills you outright. Starving and dehydration to a certain point also kills you. Loss of a certain percentage of your total blood will also Kill you. If you then for example get your arm cut off, you do not die because of the damage done to your arm but because you eventually will lose too much blood.

This I think, is the way damage will be tracked.

What fun is this, you might ask? I don’t know but I am willing to try and I believe it is just a matter of making it making sense and understanding the relation between the cause and the consequence. It then is just a matter of what statistical data you keep track of. The traditional Health Points are just an abstaction and a simplification of the above where you track only one injury statistic instead of many.

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