23 thoughts on “Running, climbing, swimming. Defy Danger+CON (enduring) or +STR (powering through)?”

  1. Str for swimming, con for not drowning

    Str for climbing, con for not falling

    Str for charging, con for not keeling over frothing like a horse ridden beyond its limit


  2. Everybody said what I think, but here’s how I would sum it up:

    Define what the “danger” is first (e.g., being beaten in a race vs drowning), and it’ll probably be more obvious.

  3. Yup. That’s how I would judge it. I had a conversation with someone a few days ago and they said “climbing is definitely CON in Dungeon World.” It was in the middle of a long conversation and I didn’t ask for a clarification at the time; maybe they would agree with the “it depends.” But they sounded so sure of themselves at the time that I was a little taken aback and had to think about it. It may be worth noting that in D&D climbing and swimming is Strength (or was in 3.x). My gut was saying climbing is usually STR at the time of the conversation. But it’s clearly both. Depending.

  4. What Jason Tocci and Esteban de la Peña said.

    It might not be either STR or CON, depending on what they do. “I try to get into the back float and stay calm, let the waves carry me.” “Cool, sounds like Defy Danger with WIS to me!”

  5. I’d argue in certain circumstances DEX is the best trait for climbing. If one needed to take a certain path to avoid dangers or leap from spot to spot. I struggle to work DEX for swimming but that might be because I don’t swim.

  6. Greg Gelder Probably, though then you aren’t really climbing are you – leaping from one rock to another. But yeah, clearly it’s the fiction that dictates. This came up in a context where characters can choose to move across an active battlefield of (for all practical purposes) battling kaiju using stealth (DEX) or by running full out (CON). I originally had STR on that latter option.

  7. I’m going STR on climbing. Really good climbers are crazy strong including their fingers! Although, like anything in DW it depends on the fiction. I heard a rock climber say that he considered his body a formula and each climb was a problem he was applying the formula to. He would have argued that climbing is INT.

  8. The short answer is that any attribute could apply, depending on the action that the character is taking. I most commonly use strength for climbing. That said, I’ve used Con or Dex depending on the situation. For climbing with equipment (ropes, knots, etc), Int could even be the key attribute.

  9. So, this brings up an interesting idea. While it’s true that you ALWAYS move the fiction forward in DW and you don’t roll multiple times (multiple attempts) for the same thing, I think there is room for a “series.” Let’s say you have a major climb ahead of you. I could break that climb into three vignettes. (I don’t know that I’d do it exactly like this, but this should give you the idea. At the very least I’d want to put some questions in the middle to make the climb seem long. Think of all that time you’d have to reflect! lol) 1. You get a pretty good distance up, just enough so that if you drop you will definitely be jelly, and you reach an overhang. There’s no way around it. Defy Danger STR to pull your body weight over the edge! 2. Cool. You rested for a while on that ledge and then continued your climb. You are in a particularly tricky spot and one of those crazy mutant mountain gates that have been jumping around all day and making you feel like a fool is eyeballing the ledge you are hanging onto! You have a few seconds before his hard hooves land on your tender fingers to fling yourself sideways onto a ledge. Defy Danger DEX to make it! 3. Whew. You did it. But by now your arms and legs are shaking. There’s just one stretch to go, can you do it? Defy Danger CON.

  10. 4E’s Skill Challenge model is pretty good inspiration here. I wouldn’t necessarily plan all of the stages, as where they are and what they’ve succeeded/failed at should be first priority, but the chain looks a lot like “Moves Snowball” if you squint a bit.

  11. For sure. You could even let the Bolster first by studying the mountain face and memorizing various possible routes. (INT roll, with ‘hold.’)

  12. Ray Otus what you are describing is largely where I’ve gone with expeditions in Stonetop (all expeditions, not just dangerous ones).

    * Set up the requirements/challenges via a Ritual-style move

    * Make GM moves to show how they’ve progressed and prompt them to make choices

    * Ask lots of questions

    * Use GM moves to present those challenges/requirements

    * Resolve, repeat, snowball.

    Shawn McCarthy there are definitely elements of 4e skill challenges in here, too. They were so close to being really good. 🙂

    dropbox.com – GM05 Expeditions.pdf

  13. I like that idea – and think you can totally have sequences like that! My one suggestion is, create the series of challenges, but don’t assign a move or attribute to them ahead of time. I know it’s tempting to do – it’s a habit I have had to shake from years of D&D.

    Describe the situation and actions first, and wait until a move triggers. If that move is Defy Danger, say how you deal. Don’t try to shoehorn in a particular attribute – just say what you’re doing and figure it out later. Based on how you’re dealing, the attribute should be more or less obvious, no fuss or confusion.

    The move might not be Defy Danger at all… Maybe they use Discern Realities to spot a cave that leads through the mountain. Or maybe they Spout Lore, and know that the mountain is a sacred dwarven ritual site, and stairs will appear if ale is spilled at the base of the cliff.

  14. Ray Otus true! A custom move for climbing a particularly perilous cliff could involve a series of rolls, like you described. I did a chase sequence once that was kind of like that. Each character encountered 3 obstacles they had to overcome, or they risked being caught. They had to describe how they overcame each obstacle, then roll the appropriate attribute. I restricted them by saying they could only use each attribute once… so they couldn’t just spam their strongest attribute 3 times. It was fun watching them try to think up ways around each obstacle.

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