UA:Alternate Threshold Levels

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Alternate Threshold Levels

The 50-point threshold in the standard D&D rules can be altered in several different ways.

Constitution Based Threshold: A character’s massive damage threshold is equal to his Constitution score. Whenever he takes damage from a single hit that equals or exceeds his current Constitution score, he must succeed on a DC 15 Fortitude save or suffer the effects of massive damage.

If an attack deals hit point damage and also changes the character’s Constitution score (such as a strike with a poisoned weapon), apply all effects of the hit before determining whether the damage is enough to trigger the saving throw. For instance, a character with a 14 Constitution is hit by a greatsword coated with black adder venom. The attack dealt 12 points of damage, but the character also fails his fortitude save against the poison and takes 3 points of Constitution damage. This lowers his Constitution—to 11. Since the damage exceeds the threshold, the character must now make a Fortitude save to avoid the effect of massive damage.

HD-Based Threshold: A character’s massive damage threshold is equal to 25 +2 per Hit Die. Whenever a character takes damage from a single blow that equals or exceeds this value, he must succeed on a DC 15 Fortitude save or suffer the effects of massive damage.

For example, a 5th-level human fighter has a massive damage threshold of 35 (25 + [2 × 5]). A fire giant has a massive damage threshold of 55 (25 + [2 × 15]).

Size-Based Threshold: A creature’s massive damage threshold is equal to 50, plus or minus 10 points for every size category larger or smaller than Medium. (This variant was originally presented on page 27 of the Dungeon Master’s Guide.) Whenever a creature takes damage from a single hit that equals or exceeds this value, it must succeed on a DC 15 Fortitude save or suffer the effects of massive damage.



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