4.0 Stress

Stress is the equivalent of damage in other games. There are three types of Stress:

  • Physical Stress: This can represent injury, illness, radiation exposure, weariness, and so forth.
  • Emotional Stress: This can represent uncontrollable anger, depression, even overwhelming bliss.
  • Mental Stress: This can represent psychic attack, mental exhaustion, or psychological effects.

Stress is measured in die types. D4 -> D6 -> D8 -> D10 -> D12. D4 represents a low amount of Stress. D8 represents a moderate amount of stress. D12 represents an extreme amount of Stress.

The Effect die represents how much Stress your target takes. For example, if Spider-Man punches Green Goblin and his final Effect die is D10, he inflicts D10 Physical Stress to Green Goblin.

Further attacks can increase the amount of Stress an enemy suffers from. If the EFFECT die is greater than the target's current Stress level, replace the target's old Stress with the new EFFECT die. For example, Wolverine claws Sabretooth with a D6 EFFECT, he inflicts D6 Stress. Next round, he claws Sabretooth again with a D10 EFFECT. Sabretooth's D6 Stress is replaced with
D10 Stress.

If the EFFECT die is equal to or less than the target's current Stress level, step the target's Stress up a single die. For example, Daredevil punches Bullseye with a D8 EFFECT, inflicting D8 Physical Stress. Next round, he roundhouse kicks Bullseye with a D6 EFFECT. Since D6 is less than D8, Bullseye's Physical Stress stages up by 1 to D10.

When Stress is staged past D12, the character takes Trauma and is incapable of action. Physical Trauma might represents being unconscious, Emotional Trauma might represents a psychotic break, and Mental Stress might represent a coma. Like Stress, Trauma is rated in dice. D6 to D12 and is staged up in the same way. If Trauma is staged past D12 the character dies.

An opponent's Stress die can be added to your action or reaction roll when appropriate. Note, a character may suffer from more than one type of Stress. Only the highest die is added to opposing rolls.

Example: Daredevil is suffering D4 Mental Stress, D10 Physical Stress, and D8 Emotional Stress. When Bullseye attempts to hit him with a throwing star, Bullseye adds only the D10 from the Physical Stress to his action roll.

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