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Poison?

Discuss Quests, Cards, Monsters etc from the Kellar's Keep Quest Pack.

Re: Poison?

Postby Goblin-King » Thursday February 18th, 2016 12:07pm

SirRick wrote:I like Goblin-King's idea as well for poison. I think when i start a game again i will implement this idea. The temporary reduced max BP will give heroes a reason keep a few anit-poison quills and antidote potions on hand if they dont want to wait till the end of the quest to be fully healed. Its another thing for very advanced heroes to spend their money on too.

It's not even an idea. It's how it actually works, just said in other words :D


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Re: Poison?

Postby Daedalus » Monday April 3rd, 2017 4:11pm

Redav wrote:
joec wrote:In Kellar's Keep, Quest 4.... There's a chest which has a poison dart in it.

This chest is trapped with a poison dart. If a Hero searches for treasure before the trap has been disarmed, he will lose 2 Body Points.


So, if someone has the Venom Antidote, they can heal it. But what about if they don't? How do you rule on this? I'm inclined to say it's not healable until the potion is used, but there's no rule that I've found for the difference between healing damage and healing poison damage.

Is the Venom Antidote part of the vanilla KK? Base HQ doesn't strike me as a game detailed enough to worry about poison. I'd expect (I don't have the quest book at hand) it mentions poison to simply explain why this dart trap causes twice as much damage as usual.

Yes, the base Hero Quest Main Game System doesn't detail poison as special damage, but the North American Keller's Keep and Return of the Witch Lord do with the introduction of new expansion material, the Alchemist's Shop:

    Venom Antidote

    Cost: 300 Gold Coins
    This bubbling brew tastes fowl,
    but heals up to 2 Body Points of
    damage by poison needles
    or poison darts only.
As cited in the Joec's quote above, chests in NA KK and RotWL expansions can be trapped with poison needles or poison darts. The NA RotWL also includes a new artifact:

    Anti-poison Quill

    Restore any of the owner's Body
    Points lost by poisoning
    if used immediately.
    May only be used once.
The Euro KK and RotWL don't include either of these new poison items with their accompanying rules nor chests trapped with poison darts.
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Re: Poison?

Postby Jafazo » Monday April 3rd, 2017 8:59pm

I have different versions of Heroquest I've produced throughout the years from a children's version to the regular unmodified version, my homebrew version and more but in reference to this fiasco I'm considering regular unmodified Heroquest.

Unless I'm mistaken, poison and poison based damage doesn't have any lingering effects, isn't kept track of to be healed later, doesn't reduce body point maximum and has no effect other than simply causing damage to your body points in that instant. The anti-poison quill & antivenom antidote work the same way & have to be used immediately after suffering poison damage in order to work. It has to be this way cause even if you try to keep track of poison damage you suffered, there's no way to track whether the poison damage or misc damage (like from combat) is what got healed if you drink a potion of healing or are targeted by a healing spell. After all, those two things can technically cure poison damage.

I agree with Cynth on this one, you either have the anti stuff on hand to use immediately or you don't and can't use it later.

In my homebrew version I handle poison as a stat effect, not a one time damage feature, and that stat effect stays with you period, even between quests, until the poison is cured.
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Re: Poison?

Postby Daedalus » Tuesday April 4th, 2017 4:02pm

The fact that Venom Antidote doesn't say it must be used immediately while an Anti-poison Quill does makes me want to treat them separately. The NA Character sheets have a lot of boxes to track Body Points, leaving it up to the player to devise how. I'd distinguish poison damage in a box with a "P." To allow for Venom Antidote to be separate from and work after normal healing, remove the damage from any boxes marked with a "P" last.

For example, an Elf with 2 Body Points marked as poison damage and damaged further for 3 Body Points casts a Heal Body spell on himself, restoring 4 Body Points of damage (3 normal, 1 poison restored); he now has 5 Body Points and 1 Body Point still marked as poison damage. Later, after being reduced down to 1 Body Point with no other healing available, he elects to drink Venom Antidote. He is now restored to 2 Body Points.

Well that's how I'd do it, but I also think your house rule that penalizes an ability is a more interesting and strong idea. I may use it someday for a particular poison.

Actually, I'm inclined to rule with some of the others that poison damage isn't healed with standard healing methods in-Quest. RAW poison that is healed with standard healing is just too vanilla, in my opinion. Expensive Venom Antidote and an Anti-poison Quill artifact should be more useful than a limited, 2 Body Point heal-up. Quest Notes in KK that use poisoned chest traps need an update that specify the damage can't be restored through standard healing in-Quest.
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Re: Poison?

Postby Jafazo » Wednesday April 5th, 2017 5:31pm

Daedalus wrote:The fact that Venom Antidote doesn't say it must be used immediately while an Anti-poison Quill does makes me want to treat them separately. The NA Character sheets have a lot of boxes to track Body Points, leaving it up to the player to devise how. I'd distinguish poison damage in a box with a "P." To allow for Venom Antidote to be separate from and work after normal healing, remove the damage from any boxes marked with a "P" last.

For example, an Elf with 2 Body Points marked as poison damage and damaged further for 3 Body Points casts a Heal Body spell on himself, restoring 4 Body Points of damage (3 normal, 1 poison restored); he now has 5 Body Points and 1 Body Point still marked as poison damage. Later, after being reduced down to 1 Body Point with no other healing available, he elects to drink Venom Antidote. He is now restored to 2 Body Points.

Well that's how I'd do it, but I also think your house rule that penalizes an ability is a more interesting and strong idea. I may use it someday for a particular poison.

Actually, I'm inclined to rule with some of the others that poison damage isn't healed with standard healing methods in-Quest. RAW poison that is healed with standard healing is just too vanilla, in my opinion. Expensive Venom Antidote and an Anti-poison Quill artifact should be more useful than a limited, 2 Body Point heal-up. Quest Notes in KK that use poisoned chest traps need an update that specify the damage can't be restored through standard healing in-Quest.


I like to keep my Heroquest as original as possible with no house rules. That kept in mind, when deciding how to handle "restoring poison damage", I looked for an example how the game handled it and that example is in the Anti-Poison Quill using the keyword 'immediately'. The Antivenom Antidote is the only red flag that gives credit to whether poison damage was meant to be tracked and handled on a separate basis. If there were more red flags supporting poison type damage as its own damage type, I might rule in favor of tracking, but there isn't. Taking damage in Heroquest is almost always referenced by a flavored source, which has no ingame influence over mechanics, then by the damage result, which influences how many body points you lose. It never combines the two to say, "... you lose 2 body points of fire damage, or water damage, or poison damage, or lightning damage." It always just says, "This is what caused your damage, because of it you lose this much damage."

Even the wording of the poison needle trap doesn't reference "Poison type damage" in itself. It just flavors the trap as being a poison needle that causes damage because let's face it, "You prick your finger on a needle and lose 1 body point." sounds plain ridiculous right?

NA Questbook, Rescue of Sir Ragnar, Note A - "The treasure chest has a trap with a poison needle on it. If a hero searches for treasure before the trap is disarmed, he will lose 1 body point. The chest is empty." (So notice how it references the damage by simply saying, he will lose 1 body point, not he will lose 1 body point in poison damage. The damage type is never referenced by the games mechanics even if we speculate by saying, "But it's a poison NEEDLE trap! OBVIOUSLY it's poison damage!" That's our experience with other RPG's kicking in to butt into Heroquest's simple gameplay.

NA Quest 5, Melar's Maze, Note C - "This chest is filled with a poisonous gas-it's a trap! If a hero searches for treasure before the trap is disarmed, he will lose 2 body points. The chest also contains144 gold coins. There is no other treasure in this room." (Again, it doesn't say he loses 2 body points of poison damage.)

Zargon's Chaos Spell, Lightningbolt - "...it will inflict 2 body points of damage on all heroes..." (No reference to lightning damage)

Looking at how restoring poison damage is handled by the game, we see in the Anti-Poison Quill that it needs to be healed 'immediately' after suffering damage from a poison source. So the only support to tracking poison type damage is in one stupid card because one word is missing. Do we chalk it up as a mistake, or apply a whole new mechanic to justify the card? C'mon people. Again, as a house rule, go for it, but if you're keeping the game house rule free, the antivenom antidote needs to be used 'immediately'.

If we go the tracking poison damage route then the game's gonna go straight to *lemony goodness* cause....

The Wizards fire spells CLEARLY reference the source of damage being fire based, so now let's mark our papers up with a bunch of P's (Poison Damaged) and F's (Fire Damaged). Sure, there's no item that says it heals fire damage, but we're just looking at the source where the damage came from right, not the descriptor that tells us how much and of what type of damage was suffered. We'll also need a few L's in case Zargon hits us with Lightningbolt and some E's or R's for Earth (Rock) damage like falling rock taps. (X_X)
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Re: Poison?

Postby mitchiemasha » Wednesday April 5th, 2017 7:26pm

Damage is damage, no separate tracking for different types. However, Venom/Poison damage can be restored by Venom Antidote KK Kellars Keep alchemist shop, American edition, not UK edition. I wouldn't say them adding an entire potion was a mistake.

We did play it as poison damage could only be healed by the antidote but if we look at how it's worded, that would be wrong. The restriction is the other way round. The Antidote potion is simply a cheaper healing potion that can only be used on damage from poison, at 300g for 2Bp. The only other buyable potion at this point is 500g for 1bp & 1MP.

If people want to rule this as an immediately like the Quill, that would be upto them, it would make things easier. It's likely they overlooked the problem in KK but realise with the Quill in RotWL and why 'Immediately' is used on the card.

So my conclusion is... Poison damage can be healed by any Potion/Spell but the Antidote/Quill can only be used on poison. I'm sure i'd read somewhere many years ago 'can only be cured by antidote' but i'm struggling to find this.


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Re: Poison?

Postby slev » Thursday April 6th, 2017 10:56am

Jafazo wrote:The Wizards fire spells CLEARLY reference the source of damage being fire based, so now let's mark our papers up with a bunch of P's (Poison Damaged) and F's (Fire Damaged). Sure, there's no item that says it heals fire damage, but we're just looking at the source where the damage came from right, not the descriptor that tells us how much and of what type of damage was suffered. We'll also need a few L's in case Zargon hits us with Lightningbolt and some E's or R's for Earth (Rock) damage like falling rock taps. (X_X)


This is why my cards have keywords and damage symbols. So you CAN account for these effects if you want to. I actualli included Keywords that intereact with little, if anything, to provide taht forward compaitibility.


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Re: Poison?

Postby knightkrawler » Thursday April 6th, 2017 12:30pm

Jafazo wrote:I like to keep my Heroquest as original as possible with no house rules. That kept in mind, when deciding how to handle "restoring poison damage", I looked for an example how the game handled it and that example is in the Anti-Poison Quill using the keyword 'immediately'. The Antivenom Antidote is the only red flag that gives credit to whether poison damage was meant to be tracked and handled on a separate basis. If there were more red flags supporting poison type damage as its own damage type, I might rule in favor of tracking, but there isn't. Taking damage in Heroquest is almost always referenced by a flavored source, which has no ingame influence over mechanics, then by the damage result, which influences how many body points you lose. It never combines the two to say, "... you lose 2 body points of fire damage, or water damage, or poison damage, or lightning damage." It always just says, "This is what caused your damage, because of it you lose this much damage."

Even the wording of the poison needle trap doesn't reference "Poison type damage" in itself. It just flavors the trap as being a poison needle that causes damage because let's face it, "You prick your finger on a needle and lose 1 body point." sounds plain ridiculous right?

NA Questbook, Rescue of Sir Ragnar, Note A - "The treasure chest has a trap with a poison needle on it. If a hero searches for treasure before the trap is disarmed, he will lose 1 body point. The chest is empty." (So notice how it references the damage by simply saying, he will lose 1 body point, not he will lose 1 body point in poison damage. The damage type is never referenced by the games mechanics even if we speculate by saying, "But it's a poison NEEDLE trap! OBVIOUSLY it's poison damage!" That's our experience with other RPG's kicking in to butt into Heroquest's simple gameplay.

NA Quest 5, Melar's Maze, Note C - "This chest is filled with a poisonous gas-it's a trap! If a hero searches for treasure before the trap is disarmed, he will lose 2 body points. The chest also contains144 gold coins. There is no other treasure in this room." (Again, it doesn't say he loses 2 body points of poison damage.)

Zargon's Chaos Spell, Lightningbolt - "...it will inflict 2 body points of damage on all heroes..." (No reference to lightning damage)

Looking at how restoring poison damage is handled by the game, we see in the Anti-Poison Quill that it needs to be healed 'immediately' after suffering damage from a poison source. So the only support to tracking poison type damage is in one stupid card because one word is missing. Do we chalk it up as a mistake, or apply a whole new mechanic to justify the card? C'mon people. Again, as a house rule, go for it, but if you're keeping the game house rule free, the antivenom antidote needs to be used 'immediately'.

If we go the tracking poison damage route then the game's gonna go straight to *lemony goodness* cause....

The Wizards fire spells CLEARLY reference the source of damage being fire based, so now let's mark our papers up with a bunch of P's (Poison Damaged) and F's (Fire Damaged). Sure, there's no item that says it heals fire damage, but we're just looking at the source where the damage came from right, not the descriptor that tells us how much and of what type of damage was suffered. We'll also need a few L's in case Zargon hits us with Lightningbolt and some E's or R's for Earth (Rock) damage like falling rock taps. (X_X)


Exactly. This is how rules are interpreted.
To add, HeroQuest is quite prone to mistakes, let's not kid ourselves.
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Re: Poison?

Postby Daedalus » Monday April 10th, 2017 6:17pm

Jafazo wrote:I like to keep my Heroquest as original as possible with no house rules. That kept in mind, when deciding how to handle "restoring poison damage", I looked for an example how the game handled it and that example is in the Anti-Poison Quill using the keyword 'immediately'. The Antivenom Antidote is the only red flag that gives credit to whether poison damage was meant to be tracked and handled on a separate basis. If there were more red flags supporting poison type damage as its own damage type, I might rule in favor of tracking, but there isn't. Taking damage in Heroquest is almost always referenced by a flavored source, which has no ingame influence over mechanics, then by the damage result, which influences how many body points you lose. It never combines the two to say, "... you lose 2 body points of fire damage, or water damage, or poison damage, or lightning damage." It always just says, "This is what caused your damage, because of it you lose this much damage."

Even the wording of the poison needle trap doesn't reference "Poison type damage" in itself. It just flavors the trap as being a poison needle that causes damage because let's face it, "You prick your finger on a needle and lose 1 body point." sounds plain ridiculous right?

NA Questbook, Rescue of Sir Ragnar, Note A - "The treasure chest has a trap with a poison needle on it. If a hero searches for treasure before the trap is disarmed, he will lose 1 body point. The chest is empty." (So notice how it references the damage by simply saying, he will lose 1 body point, not he will lose 1 body point in poison damage. The damage type is never referenced by the games mechanics even if we speculate by saying, "But it's a poison NEEDLE trap! OBVIOUSLY it's poison damage!" That's our experience with other RPG's kicking in to butt into Heroquest's simple gameplay.

NA Quest 5, Melar's Maze, Note C - "This chest is filled with a poisonous gas-it's a trap! If a hero searches for treasure before the trap is disarmed, he will lose 2 body points. The chest also contains144 gold coins. There is no other treasure in this room." (Again, it doesn't say he loses 2 body points of poison damage.)

Zargon's Chaos Spell, Lightningbolt - "...it will inflict 2 body points of damage on all heroes..." (No reference to lightning damage)

Looking at how restoring poison damage is handled by the game, we see in the Anti-Poison Quill that it needs to be healed 'immediately' after suffering damage from a poison source. So the only support to tracking poison type damage is in one stupid card because one word is missing. Do we chalk it up as a mistake, or apply a whole new mechanic to justify the card? C'mon people. Again, as a house rule, go for it, but if you're keeping the game house rule free, the antivenom antidote needs to be used 'immediately'.

If we go the tracking poison damage route then the game's gonna go straight to *lemony goodness* cause....

The Wizards fire spells CLEARLY reference the source of damage being fire based, so now let's mark our papers up with a bunch of P's (Poison Damaged) and F's (Fire Damaged). Sure, there's no item that says it heals fire damage, but we're just looking at the source where the damage came from right, not the descriptor that tells us how much and of what type of damage was suffered. We'll also need a few L's in case Zargon hits us with Lightningbolt and some E's or R's for Earth (Rock) damage like falling rock taps. (X_X)

Your interpretation of poison rules is fine--you've clearly arrived at a satisfactory answer with a lot of supporting thought. My interpretation is also fine. I say interpretation, not house rule because we are both separately coping with a rules issue, not creating a new rule (more on mine below.) Any frequenter of the Inn is free to "choose your poison."

I agree the examples of poison supplied in your post present only Body Point damage with poison fluff text. Being from the Main Game System, there is no other way to deal with healing damage caused from poison in those cases. Sure, one could allow Alchemist Shop potions at that point, but it isn't recommended anywhere because those Quests weren't intended to be considered with poison rules.

Then KK and RotWL were released. As expansions, they contain new rules for play within those Quests (and later Quests if you prefer.) Specifically, rules for a new way of healing poison damage are found within the text of Venom Antidote from the Alchemist's Shop and the Anti-poison Quill Artifact Card. Also, on p.3 under Playing Return of the Witch Lord:

    New Artifact Cards (continued)
    *Anti-poison Quill: This rare, hollow quill contains a
    mysterious substance that counteracts any type of poison. This
    antidote will restore Body Points lost by poisoning if used
    immediately by the owner. The quill must be crossed off the
    Hero’s Character sheet after it is used.
Unfortunately, the additional text, "counteracts any type of poison" contradicts the Artifact Card which only covers Body Point damage. Good thing the Anti-poison Quills in Quest 8 aren't available until after Belethor the poisonous Gargoyle is encountered in Quest 5!

As Hero Quest is an older game, those item texts (and the Quests) don't use or need the descriptor "poison damage" found in many later games. Could a descriptor have worked more clearly? Yes. However, Hero Quest instead words poison damage in these two ways: Venom Antidote "...heals up to 2 Body Points of damage by poison needles or poison darts only"; Anti-poison Quill "Restore any of the owner's Body Points lost by poisoning if used immediately...."

Written this way, the potion and artifact poison rules and how to handle them apply in a global way to applicable instances within the Quests; no further "poison damage" descriptors within the few trap entries of KK and RotWL are needed or included. The Quest text about a poison needle, etc. serves as a pointer to the global rule; if the potion or artifact is available, you may apply it's listed rule. That makes poison traps functionally separate from other cases of Body Point damage and fluff text within KK and RotWL.

This top-down interpretation of how the poison rules are called into play with trap damage is what motivates me to consider the text in the Venom Antidote entry as acceptable, rules-as-written. Tracking Body Point loss caused by poison is a viable implementation of that rule. As poison need only be considered where only poison rules are presented, tracking "F" for fire damage, "L" for lightning, "E" or "R" for falling rocks is extraneous. Nowhere else in the sum of MB-published Hero Quest material (that I'm aware of) is special Body Point damage tracking called for. Well, there is the BQP Potion of Warmth, but that must be used immediately and doesn't need a letter for recording.

For those who don't wish to record a "P", they may instead interpret the ambiguous wording of Venom Antidote by tracking poison damage as a condition (as my old group has done.) Consider poison damage to be healed last and ask: Does a Hero have any unhealed damage remaining from when he/she was poisoned by a needle or dart? If so, then up to 2 Body Points of damage may be healed by Venom Antidote. If Venom Antidote is on hand, remembering if 1, 2, or more Body Points causes by a poison needle/dart remains unhealed should be easy.
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Re: Poison?

Postby j_dean80 » Monday April 10th, 2017 6:27pm

My interpretation is poison damage causes the same as any other BP loss. The reason for the poison antidote stating use immediately is so it doesn't need to be tracked separately. Otherwise you forget which was poison and which wasn't. Poison damage can be healed with the antidote or any other normal method. The antidote is just a cheaper alternative in the Alchemist Shop.
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