Introduction (by Steve Miller):
Here’s a rule that was deleted from the FIFTH AGE rules set. It’s not an official part of the game at this time.
If Narrators decide to incorporate this into their games, I advise that you follow the advice given… that at the very least significant villains get to give a few dying words.
Both of the previous rules are designed to reflect the dramatic nature of combat in novels. Heroes and other major characters are seldom killed instantly. At the very least, the dying character sticks around long enough to gasp out a few last words, utter a dying curse, or profess his inner most secret love.
Of course, there are times when this isn’t how the world works. If Malystrix or one of her ilk lets loose with a torrent of flame on a single individual, the odds are that the target will be incinerated instantly. No good byes, no lingering death scenes, just a few ashes and maybe some smoke.
If the number of damage points left over from an attack which knocks out a hero or character is greater than his Endurance score, the victim has been instantly slain.
Consider the following example. Ren has been badly beaten and has but a single card (the five or swords) left in his hand. He staggers boldly on, but finds himself confronted by a blue dragon who unleashes a stroke of lightning at him. Despite his armor and other protections, Ren suffers 12 points of damage. Ren’s player gives up his card, absorbing 5 points of damage but leaving 8 unaccounted for. If Ren’s Endurance is equal to or greater than this “overkill,” he’s simply knocked out. If it’s not, he’s instantly slain. As it is, his Endurance is a 7, so we won’t be seeing Ren in any more of our examples.