Earthdawn Step Table
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Steps And Tests in Earthdawn

Steps and the step/action dice table are the center of nearly all Earthdawn game mechanics. Nearly all tests are based upon a combination of one of your stats and your ranks in the appropriate Talent or skill. For example, the Melee Weapons talent is based upon your Dexterity step. So, when attacking with melee weapons, you add your Melee Weapons rank to your dexterity step to get your attack step. Other things can affect your step. Once you've added all the modifiers to your test step, you then check the final step against the step chart, and roll the appropriate action dice.

Arkanabar is attacking a Theran warrior. He is using his Melee Weapons talent. His dexterity step is 8, his Melee Weapons rank is 6, and he is using the Aggressive Attack option, which gives a +3 step bonus. 8+6+3=17, so Arkanabar's Attack Step is 17. He will roll a d20 and a d10, and add the results.

One usual modifier for tests is karma. Any time karma is used for a test, you add a karma die to the action dice and spend one of your karma points, which you purchase back with Legend Points, which are Earthdawn's measure of experience.

This Theran warrior has proven very hard to hit so far. Arkanabar is a swordmaster, which means he can spend Karma on a Melee Weapons test if he wishes. He decides to spend a Karma Point on his attack. Because he is t'skrang, that adds another d6 to the roll. Arkanabar's player will now roll a d20, a d10, and a d6, and add all their results together.

Action dice are Upper Open Ended. That means, any time a die rolls its maximum value, you roll a Bonus Die of the same size and add it to the result. This means that there is a vanishingly remote chance that a weakling with a steak knife could kill a dragon in a single blow. This also means that you can not take any fight for granted--there is always a chance that somebody will get lucky enough to kill you.

The dice come up 7 on the d20, 10 on the d10, and 4 on the d6. That's 21, but since the d10 came up at its maximum value, a d10 Bonus Die is rolled. It comes up a 10 also, so another d10 Bonus Die is added to the roll. This time it comes up a 2. Arkanabar's Melee Weapons test result is 33.

If your action dice all roll 1s, then the action automatically fails, even if you're rolling five dice against a difficulty number of 2.

As a side note, in order to save space and typing, I do not separate single dice with '+' signs, only multiples of dice.

step dice step dice step dicestep dice
1 d4-2 26 d20d10d8d6 51 2d20d12+2d10+2d8 76 3d20+4d10+3d8d6
2 d4-1 27 d20d10+2d8 52 2d20+2d10+2d8+2d6 77 3d20+4d10+4d8
3 d4 28 d20+2d10d8 53 2d20+2d10+3d8d6 78 3d20+5d10+3d8
4 d6 29 d20d12d10d8 54 2d20+3d10+2d8d6 79 3d20d12+4d10+3d8
5 d8 30 d20d10d8+2d6 55 2d20+3d10+3d8 80 4d20+3d10+3d8d4
6 d10 31 d20d10+2d8d6 56 2d20+4d10+2d8 81 4d20+3d10+3d8d6
7 d12 32 d20+2d10d8d6 57 2d20d12+3d10+2d8 82 4d20+3d10+4d8
8 2d6 33 d20+2d10+2d8 58 3d20+2d10+2d8d4 83 4d20+4d10+3d8
9 d8d6 34 d20+3d10d8 59 3d20+2d10+2d8d6 84 4d20d12+3d10+3d8
10 d10d6 35 d20d12+2d10d8 60 3d20+2d10+3d8 85 4d20+3d10+3d8+2d6
11 d10d8 36 2d20d10d8d4 61 3d20+3d10+2d8 86 4d20+3d10+4d8d6
12 2d10 37 2d20d10d8d6 62 3d20d12+2d10+2d8 87 4d20+4d10+3d8d6
13 d12d10 38 2d20d10+2d8 63 3d20+2d10+2d8+2d6 88 4d20+4d10+4d8
14 d20d4 39 2d20+2d10d8 64 3d20+2d10+3d8d6 89 4d20+5d10+3d8
15 d20d6 40 2d20d12d10d8 65 3d20+3d10+2d8d6 90 4d20d12+4d10+3d8
16 d20d8 41 2d20d10d8+2d6 66 3d20+3d10+3d8 91 4d20+4d10+4d8d4
17 d20d10 42 2d20d10+2d8d6 67 3d20+4d10+2d8 92 4d20+4d10+4d8d6
18 d20d12 43 2d20+2d10d8d6 68 3d20d12+3d10+2d8 93 4d20+4d10+5d8
19 d20+2d6 44 2d20+2d10+2d8 69 3d20+3d10+3d8d4 94 4d20+5d10+4d8
20 d20d8d6 45 2d20+3d10d8 70 3d20+3d10+3d8d6 95 4d20d12+4d10+4d8
21 d20d10d6 46 2d20d12+2d10d8 71 3d20+3d10+4d8 96 4d20+4d10+4d8+2d6
22 d20d10d8 47 2d20+2d10+2d8d4 72 3d20+4d10+3d8 97 4d20+4d10+5d8d6
23 d20+2d10 48 2d20+2d10+2d8d6 73 3d20d12+3d10+3d8 98 4d20+5d10+4d8d6
24 d20d12d10 49 2d20+2d10+3d8 74 3d20+3d10+3d8+2d6 99 4d20+5d10+5d8
25 d20d10d8d4 50 2d20+3d10+2d8 75 3d20+3d10+4d8d6 100 4d20+6d10+4d8
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