Sometimes the dice try to kill a PC. In most campaigns, PC death shouldn’t occur through a bad die roll, but only if the character’s actions were truly self-sacrificing or stupid enough to warrant death. Three methods of preventing accidental PC death are presented. They may be used separately or together or not at all.
These should not be used for run-of-the-mill NPCs, but could be used for major ones.
The “automatic death” rule in Wound Levels takes precedence over these suggestions.
1. A character cannot take more than three levels of wounds in one blow. For example, an unwounded character could be Scratched, Hurt, or Very Hurt in one blow, but any excess damage points beyond that would be lost. A Hurt character could go all the way to Near Death in one blow, but not be killed outright.
2. A character cannot be rendered Near Death unless he began that combat round Incapacitated. This is simpler to keep track of than the first system, and assumes there is some great difference between a severe wound and mortal wound. There probably isn’t, but the rule isn’t intended to be realistic: it’s to make the PCs more heroic than real life.
3. A player may spend a Fudge Point to convert a deadly wound to a merely serious one.