Listen at the Door

live-action fantasy role playing game

Listen at the Door

PART II: How to Play a Round

The game processes that occur within a round are what defines the game more than anything else. Rounds are also where players and the GM interact the most.

This section should be considered essential reading for all players. Refer to Part I if you would like definitions of terms and other essential concepts.

Table of Contents

d20Overview of a Round
d20Intent Phase
d40Fantasy Attack aka Attack
d40Fantasy Defense aka Defense
d40Win and Loss Rewards
d40Movement by the Numbers
d40Facing Opponents
d40Beginning the Resolution Phase
d40Overview of the Resolution Phase
d60Fantasy Attack
d60Talking instead of Attacking
d60Victory Dance
d60Reward Offer
d60Gold Phase
d60Reward Phase
d40Disabled Players

Overview of a Round (top)
A round has three main phases:

These phases are also broken down into their own phases and they are all explained in this part.

The GM leads the players through these three phases of each round. When a round is over, the next one begins and the same three phases of intent, movement and resolution occur again.

Players start each round where they ended up in the last round. You can pause a game and resume so long as players remember just where they were and what they were carrying.

The GM is required to say things during the game, loudly enough to be easily heard. The GM must speak to all players this way to indicate when certain things happen in the game or when changing from one phase to another, or from exploration mode to melee.

Players are also required to speak. They must sometimes address their opponent, sometimes they must address their team, and sometimes they must address everyone present. Players are sometimes required by their artifacts or circumstances to give a battle cry, make a characteristic noise, or even tell a brief story.

These are part of the game and cannot be omitted. Special rules and enchantments apply when certain things are said by the GM or players. Players are encouraged to embellish their speech with accents, and a few extra words for fun. But, there are lots of things to say, so unless everyone else is really enjoying it, keep it brief. If they are really enjoying it, go for it! This is what makes the game fun and more of a role-playing-game instead of a live-action board game.

Intent Phase (top)
The intent phase almost always begins when the GM says loudly:

d40"What is your intent!"

This is the moment when:
- Any team may surrender
- Players may briefly talk with each other to decide what to do
- Each player fills out an intent card (or selects one they have pre-made)

A team may only surrender at the beginning of the intent phase of a round. They do this simply by saying aloud together "We Surrender" or "The Thralls Surrender" but nothing like "We will never surrender!" See “Surrender” later.

An intent card is just a piece of paper with either two or four things written on it, depending on whether the player character is attacking or retreating.

If a player is intending to attack their opponent they write these four things:
d60an "attack"
d60a "defense"
d60a "win" reward request
d60a "lose" reward offer

If a player is intending to retreat from an opponent that attacked them in the previous round, they write only two things on their intent card.
d60the word "Retreat"
d60a "lose" reward offer

If a player is intending to only talk with an opponent, they write only two things on their intent card.
d60the word "Talk"
d60a "lose" reward offer

The attack and the defense are pure fantasy -- these things *never* happen in the game. They are pure imagination, and the more imaginative the better a chance they have of winning a round.

The "win reward request" and the "lose reward offer" can happen in the game if players are willing. You don't have to do it just because you wrote it, but your player character benefits when you do. Making it too safe is boring, but if it is too over the top and is refused, you don't benefit as much.

You benefit by making the things you offer interesting, desirable or in general agreeable to allow.

Everyone who is not disable is required to somehow produce an intent card during the intent phase.

At the end of the intent round they have a card in their hand with the required information. Once a player has their intent card ready, they should make their battle cry to announce that they are ready to proceed.

Fantasy Attack aka Attack (top)
An "attack" is actually an imaginary, fantasy action you would take targeting some part of some other player's body using some part of your body. Attacks must name each body part with a single noun, such as:
d40"I pinch your right earlobe with two fingers on my right hand.”

The attacker is using two their fingers and target is their opponents right earlobe: Fingers pinch earlobe. If the attack cannot be reduced to a simple “Subject verb object” sentence it must be revised until it can.

This is not going to be what actually happens between you and them. *It is a fantasy attack.* It can be anything you can think of, the more creative, the better. It is supposed to be something daring or interesting or funny or clever or… see the list of Merit categories below. It must be something that could be done and that could be felt.

This isn't combat.

There actually isn't any incentive to imagine ways to harm the other person. It would be far better to have an attack like "I would pinch your earlobe with my toes" than something like "I would hit you with this book" because the former is more likely to win based on the kind of criteria used to resolve attacks within the game. It isn't force that wins. It might be humor this round, but how clever the attack would be considered next round. The following round it might be how pleasing it would feel. Being hit by a book isn't as funny, clever nor does it feel good, so it is likely to practically always lose.

Wit and humor and cleverness win as attacks. This attack and defense part of the game is just fantasy you play out with other players in your minds. You aren't doing these things. Go wild! However, be brief on intent cards.

You will have to read this "attack" to your opponent at the right time in the resolution phase of a round.

Fantasy Defense aka Defense (top)
A "defense" is something you do to interfere with the other person's attack. Of course, you have no idea what their attack will be, other than that it will focus on one part of your body.

A defense can be:
My Body Part) completely protect any one part of your body that can be described with a single noun, except for things like "skin" which imply the whole body. Head, legs, ears, mouth, etc. This defense works if the other person targets this part of the body or anything directly within it. If they target fingers and you defend hands, they lose. But if you defend your arms and they attack your fingers or hands, you lose, because the arms are never thought to contain the hands the hands are thought to contain definers. You may also specify left or right and how many are being used.

My Feeling) completely protect against any physical feeling that can be described with a single noun, except feelings that would apply no matter what or aren't specific. Pleasure, pain, uncomfortable, hot, cold, wet, dry, but not happy, sad or any emotions. Only physical sensations. This defense works if it would interfere with something that would cause that kind of sensation.

Their Body Part) completely protect you against anything done with some part of your opponents body that can be described with a single noun. The rules for these work like the rules for My Body Part. This defense works if the attacker is using this body part in their intent. If they attack with a finger and you defend against hands, they lose. However, choosing arms doesn't disqualify fingers because arms aren't normally though to contain fingers the way hands do. The players themselves decide the effectiveness of defenses, and they can also defer to chance or the GM if they don't agree.

Other) what other defenses make sense? Objects of a certain size? Use of an artifact?

Like the fantasy attack, *this fantasy defense doesn't happen.* At most you will have to read this "defense" so you have to be able to say it in front of everyone.

There will usually be more than one defense. These are some ways a person might have more than one simultaneous defense:
- The one on their intent card
- An artifact may impart a defense when carried
- A character class may convey a natural defense
- Minion Monsters may have natural defenses
- The GM may introduce a defense that applies to one team or another when the Intent round begins

The players are encouraged to use defenses together for interesting effects; however, anything that equates to invulnerability negates all defenses for that player for that round (Head+neck+chest+trunk+legs+feet = defenseless).

All a player’s defenses apply to any and every attack on a player, from any direction.

Win and Loss Rewards (top)
Players write their win and loss "offers" on their intent cards along with their fantasy attack and defense.

Unlike fantasy attacks and defenses, players are in essence actually offering to really do or say something or offering to allow someone else to do or say something to them. It could be nothing more than a touch of a finger on a knee or a compliment about your hat. But, both win and lose rewards must involve some kind of touch or verbal interaction between the two players.

Here are some example rewards (used either for win or loss):
1. You must tell me a secret
2. You must let me pat your head and say "Good monster!"
3. You must compliment my costume
4. You must let me wear your hat
5. You must listen to my poem
6. I will wear your hat upside down

In fact, you can make any request for your reward. However, if you ask for too much, your opponent will simply refuse and that will hurt you both.

So, you have an incentive to request things the other person is unlikely to refuse, because while their refusal means you get a little less gold for your win, their refusal means they will lose gold, no matter what. If you win the attack, the worst that can happen to you is that you will win one gold.

Players should select their win and loss rewards carefully, because they are the main part of the game where players interact with each other's bodies directly, and sometimes you are trapped in the reward phase with your opponent until everyone finishes with their resolution phases too.

As winner you to consider their loss reward for you (they wrote it on their intent card.) You do not have to accept it. Perhaps it is spiteful or otherwise unappealing, as loss rewards sometimes are. The loser knows it will cost them a melee life point to indulge themselves in making an offer the winner won't accept. Why not write something one's opponent might accept and save the melee life point?

The winner can also reject the loss reward, even if it would be easy for them to comply "I will bow down before you." They may do so to force the loser to lose a gold piece, but the indulgence means that they themselves receive one gold piece less for their win by doing so.

Movement (top)
The second phase of each round is movement. During this round players may move one step at a time, or skip one of their movement steps. Movement doesn't accrue from round to round. The GM runs the movement round to help people act simultaneously.

Players cannot walk through other players. However, so long as nobody gets hurt, if they give consent you may climb over them, through their legs, or come into contact with them as you move around them. They may also insist that no part of you touch them as they pass, which allows a team to form a effective wall or obstacle, which can seriously affect choices available to other players.

They might mind because it is bad strategy to allow you to pass. Then need only say "No" or "You shall not pass!" with suitable accent, but not "Yes" or "Sure" or "What?" or no response at all. You must receive positive consent to touch anyone during the movement phase ,whether the person is on your team or not.

But, if they say it is ok to climb over them, and you can do it without hurting either of you, have fun.

Players may also limit how they are touched while moving, such as "You may touch nothing above my knees as you pass" which is fair. If it can't be done, such as "You may touch only the bottoms of my feet," that works the same as a "No," but is far more fun to say.

Movement is limited by distance, not by whether you cross that distance walking. Crawling, hopping or funny walks are all acceptable ways of getting from one place to another. Feel free to get there any way you want, but it shouldn't take very long.

Steps (top)
The movement phase is broken into individual steps that are controlled by the GM. Each character class has a different number of steps allowed per round. Some special rules interfere with or augment movement.

If the GM sees you are consensually climbing over someone, they will wait until you are finished. Everyone will be moving at the same time, and once they are done they will also wait for you to finish climbing over someone.

Players are welcome to throw in a battle cry if they are ready to move on to the next step and someone else is took slow in finishing a step. It adds useful background noise.

All non-disabled players who are not bound by some other special rule may physically move up to their maximum number of steps (if they can,) but may move less if they wish. Steps are like "movement points" that get regenerated and spent each round. They cannot be saved and skipping a step doesn't mean you can add it later in the same round.

People are supposed to take their steps (move as far as one pace) at the same time as much as possible.

Movement By the Numbers (top)
The GM controls the movement. Nobody should change location or face a different opponent until the GM calls out:
d40"Movement Begins!"

Anyone can now use an artifact that can only be used before movement.

Then the GM begins counting out loud beginning with "One." The GM waits until all players who can move have done so if they want to (e.g. taken a step if they want to and are allowed.)

Players are also allowed to use an artifact instead of taking a step during a round.

When the GM sees no more movement and no more artifact use, they count the next number aloud.

When nobody moves the Movement Phase is over and the Resolution phase begins.

d40"Movement Ends!"

Players are not allowed to move anymore, but they may rotate to face any other player they wish, or sit or kneel, etc. They are otherwise glued to that spot until the next "Movement Begins" or the melee ends.

If twi players from different teams just moved close enough to each other from the other team to attack, neither would have already prepared intent cards. They should do so now if they intend to attack. They may also not attack if they wish. Not all minion are instructed to attack. Some are merely delivering something to the players and will then run away.

However, if someone starts creating a card, or pulls out a prepared intent card, that means they intend to attack. That means and the other person is required to fill out an intent card too, unless they can convince their opponent not to attack.

Facing Opponents (top)
At the end of movement all players may choose their orientation. By doing so they choose their opponent.

To engage a player they must face that player, even if the other player isn’t facing them. When several people are close together, which players face each other can seem random.

Each player encounters whoever they are facing. If a player character (say, Master D) gets two attacks, they must faces one other player. To use their second attack there must be another player within reach and also within Master D’s peripheral vision.

If a player is facing another player’s back (defined as out of the other player’s peripheral vision) it is NOT an automatic victory. All defenses a player might have apply equally to attacks from behind or against multiple attackers.

If a player chooses not to face another player they are not allowed to attack during that round. However, if other players attack a player from behind that player will still be involved with involved in a resolution with those players.

If a player is not facing any other player they are not in an encounter and may simply move away the next round.

If they writes the word “Retreat” on their intent cards they get to move two steps in any direction at the end of the resolution phase, before the next round begins. This is a rare case where the rules allow movement outside the movement phase. To retreat a player must also not face any opponent.

A player who has shown their back to a player of the other team might still be attacked from behind before they are allowed their special “two steps” at the end of resolution.

An example of how this works to balance the game:
So, what prevents all of one team from ganging up on the ever-so-helpless and painfully cute Minion Monsteress “Miss Evercute” on the other team? Well, aside from the fact that all the other players can now attack them from the back without risk, nothing. It is a losing strategy, but knock yourself out. Their lose offer is being fulfilled with each minion monsters standing behind them.

Now, Miss Evercute isn't a fool. At the end of the movement phase she presents her cheek as if she would accept a kiss. The suggestion is obvious to the attackers. Will the bait be taken? If she defends her head they all lose if they made a fantasy attack to kiss her cheek. She is leading them to their doom as the rest of her team attacks them from behind. If she loses all her melee life point gold pieces, she can get some from her team mates in the next movement round. Since a player cannot go below 0 life point gold pieces, her loss is limited. Her team’s loss might be no more than her loss. However, the other team’s cumulative loss could be much more than the stake lost by Miss Evercute’s gambit.

This is a game of wits and communication. You can't actually do what you have written for your fantasy attack. But, can you be manipulate your opponent into something predictable? Can you be provocative but subtle enough to get an edge when choosing a defense?

Attacks usually win. Can you increase your chances? You can talk to your opponent while writing your intent card. You can tell them what you are writing, if you want. You can ask them to tell you. They don't have to. You may have a history with someone and already have a recurring "theme" for your attacks with them.

This game allow players to use their wits against each other. At the same time, the game mechanics favor traditional tactics like protecting your back, standing in a wall, blocking a door, etc.

Resolution (top)

Beginning the Resolution Phase (top)
Resolution begins when the GM announces the end of the movement phase.

The GM must also announce the Merit with which attacks are compared if there is a draw. Players don’t know the merit in advance, so they should choose attacks that might win with more than one merit.

The GM may optionally also add a rule modification for the round. For example:

- any one thing that could qualify as a defense
- no artifacts
- no skips
- no spells
- only magic users may use spells

But, because the GM is already responsible for game balance, this can be anything that the players find acceptable, including "attacks must involve feet and defenses can only target feelings."

It is even better when this can be fit into the scenario, such as a goal to find jealous artifact that will not operate when other artifacts are used, for example. A GM may be able to weave such round-specific limitations into the scenario.

Overview of the Resolution Process (top)
The resolution process goes through these phases:
Reveal. Players reveal their initial intent cards
Spells. Players use spells to replace initial cards. Beginners should play without spells.
Fantasy Attack/ Retreat/Talk. Players resolve retreats, talk offers and initial fantasy attacks vs defenses.
Victory Dance
Reward Offer. The winner requests their final “Win reward" and the loser offers their "Lose reward"
Reward Choice/Gold Phase.
Players independently choose whether to accept the reward offers.
Gold is won or lost based on whether the final Win and Loss offers
were accepted or not.
Reward Phase. Any accepted offers are fulfilled.

The phases happen one after another, but the GM doesn't control these phases -- the players themselves do, at their own speed. The GM is largely uninvolved and may just watch, unless a player needs help with rules or players choose to have the GM make a decision.

Players involved in multiple encounters (e.g attacking and being attacked by different people.) They have to go through the resolution process with multiple players.

Players follow the rules below to work through the process until they reach the Reward phase, where they remain until the GM brings the round to a close, and begins the next round with.

d40"What is your intent!"

Impatient players may make an occasional battle cry to alert the GM they are ready to proceed.

Reveal (top)
The reveal begins when the game master has determined that all players are ready with their intent cards. This can be hard for the GM to do with all the sounds people make. Players can make this easier by not continuing to doodle on their action cards after they are ready to play. The GM may be waiting for you to finish. If the GM asks you if you are done, you aren’t being clear about whether you are done or not. It should be obvious.

The GM may loudly say:
d40”Reveal your intentions!”

The players respond with their battle cry and they read their attacks to each other. There is no advantage to reading first; however, if a player is playing without written intent cards they should speak before a player with a written intent card. It is not permitted for both players in an encounter to avoid using an intent card because they cannot both go first. So, even experienced players may be required to write intent cards or prepare some in advance.

If a player’s intent card is not ready, they can improvise and use no intent card, or only what they have written so far, but they must reveal their intent first. If neither is ready they may take more time until one of the has finished a card.

Players say their attacks to the person being attacked. Players also say their defenses to each person attacking them.

d40"Master of Dominion attacks the Minion Monster Julie with a finger tickle to the forearm”
d40"Minion Monster Julie attacks Master of Dominion with gentle pinch to an earlobe ."

By the end of this phase each player knows the intentions of all players they are encountering during this round.

Talking instead of Attacking (top)
If both players write “Talk” on their card instead of an attack, the may talk until the end of the round. These players might be attacked by other players, so they may still have a role in resolution. If not, they skip all of the rest of the phases of the current round and may talk about whatever they wish, including what they might put on their next intent card. Players may lie about their future intent cards if they wish.

It is fine for a player to be talking to one player and be attacked by another, but a player who is attacking one player cannot talk to another.

Retreat (top)
If both players write “Retreat” on their intent cards then they are both allowed but not required to take 2 steps away from all attackers.
A player may not retreat from one player and attack another in the same round.

If one player retreats and the other attacks, then the retreating player has the option to drop a melee life point gold piece on the ground as an incentive offer to not be pursued and not attack. The attacker may dispense with the entire resolution round by picking up the gold piece, which counts only as a regular gold piece and not a melee life point gold piece for their new owner.

If the attacker does not pick up the gold piece, it is still lost from the retreating player. The attacker must still win against any defenses the retreating player has. Players still follow the resolution process. If the retreating player is forced to give up one gold piece at the end of resolution, they do not, because they have already dropped one gold piece. This robs the attacker of receiving one gold piece from their opponent. However, if the retreating player would have lost two gold pieces, they would still owe the remaining one.

If a gold piece is dropped during a retreat, it can then be picked up in the next movement phase in lieu of a step or in exploration mode.

When a retreating player takes two steps away they must not touch other players without consent. That may mean they are not able to move and may be subject to attack next round.

Spells (top)
Unless spells are not allowed because of a special rule, each player may decide whether they would like to replace their current intent card with a spell.

When players are learning the game the GM might indicate that players get no spells for that game. Next game spells can be added to shake up the game play.

Once both players have each decided whether they will or won’t play a spell card, they play their spell cards (or not) at the same time.

Unless a "special rule" says otherwise, only one spell is allowed per player, except that magic users may use two spells per round if they wish.

The cards in play are called the "active intent cards" and special rules can do things to the active cards, such as replace them or force a player to write a new one which becomes that player's active intent card.

If the "Yet Another Spell" special rule is in affect, it is handled as above. If both players get yet another spell, they must reveal them at the same time.

The final intent cards are the ones used for the rest of the resolution.

Fantasy Attack (top)
The two opponents collaborate to decide who wins and who loses the fantasy attack.

An attack is considered successful if the defense would not seem to be effective it in the minds of both players. They only consult the GM if they cannot decide themselves and do not want to just flip a gold piece, which is also OK.

Once the players have produced their intent cards and both are ready to reveal them, they make their battle cry if they are attacking and a retreating cry if they are retreating at the same time as they reveal their cards to each other.

Like a scottish court, each side must make its case. It is possible for both sides to win or lose their fantasy attack. Attacks usually work, so it is fun and interesting when an attack fails because the defense worked.

When a defense succeeds, the person who was defending is required to make a characteristic sound of defiance. It can be any sound or short phrase, and a player can have more than one, but they must say something out loud when their defense works. It is acceptable to add your own adjectives to describe their ineffective and visually offensive noun, for example. They are your opponent. Get them riled up! It will be a lot more fun!

Yet, it is disarming and fun to sometimes compliment someone who attacks you.

For one player to win outright over the other, one of the attacks must succeed and the other must fail.

If both succeed or both fail it is a draw.

If it is a draw the players may choose how to handle the draw on their own:
- Skip -- if both players agree to this
- Rematch -- if both players agree to this
- Merit -- -- if both players agree to this or if both players cannot agree
- Chance -- if both players agree to this

Skip (top)
Skip means the round has no effects and nobody wins or loses gold pieces. Both must agree to skip and either can veto and force the choice of one of the other ways of resolving a draw.

Rematch (top)
Players simply make new cards.

Merit (top)
The players ignore all defenses and compare only their attacks based on their relative merit. The merit category is announced by the GM at the beginning of the round.

Here are some example merit categories, but the GM is encouraged to make up interesting and unpredictable merit categories:
1. creative
2. unusual
3. likely to happen if it was allowed right now
4. clever
5. humorous
6. icky
7. pleasant
8. interesting

The two players decide together which attack had more merit in the one category identified by the GM. It doesn't matter whether the attack was successful. It is usually obvious which wins, but if not, consider it a draw and ask the GM for a different merit category.

Chance (top)
Flip a gold piece.

Victory Dance (top)
Once one player is determined to be the winner of the round, they are required to make a characteristic noise or say something aloud to everyone present. They aren't required to actually do a little dance, but it is permitted. A little dance is encouraged for people who dress scary. Be creative, but be brief. Other players will not stop to watch or listen -- this is just required background noise in the game, but it also lets your team mates know that you won and not your opponent.

Reward Offer (top)
When the reward phase of a round happens, the winner must request their "win" reward from the losing player. The losing player must offer the winning player their lose reward.

d40"I, Master D, have beaten you this round! I request that you play this little piggy with my left foot!"

d40"You won this round, Miss Turdy. As your reward I offer to laugh in your face and insult you!"

Either may refuse what the other's request. These requests must be loud enough for the opponent to hear. If the opponent cannot hear, they may request that it is said louder.

Gold Phase (top)

Each player must decide on their own whether to accept or reject any reward offer or request made to them.

If both accept the other's offer, the winner of the fantasy attack gets one melee life point gold pieces from the losing player.

If neither accepts the other's offer the winner loses one and the loser loses two life point gold pieces.

If the winner accepts the losers offer, but not vice versa, the loser gives the winner two melee life point gold pieces.

If the winner refuses the loser's offer, but not vice versa, the winner gets nothing and the loser gives one gold piece to the GM.

When a player no melee life points left they become disabled (see below.)

Reward Phase (top)
The reward phase is supposed to be fun. You may be fulfilling your reward offer and your opponent may be fulfilling theirs.

If you say anything as part of a reward it should be loud enough to be heard by anyone nearby, but doesn't need to be shouted unless specified.

But, sometimes there is nothing for two opponents to do because they have both refused, or because the rewards did not take long to complete.

This is a good time to fulfill character class and artifact passive intent requirements that involve speech, such as a thief telling a ridiculous lie, a magic user recounting a disaster, or a fighter embellishing their role in a fictional battle.

You may also begin writing your intent card for the next round if you have extra time during the reward phase. You may also make cries of encouragement to your team mates as they enjoy their rewards (or don't enjoy giving their loss rewards to their opponents.)

If you have spare time and someone is disabled, you can reminisce about the good old days with them. You could tell them all the things you wish you could have when they still had melee life point gold pieces.

Disabled Players (top)
A player becomes disabled when they run out of melee life points during a melee.

As soon as a player becomes disabled, they are stuck at that spot. They must also sing their death chant or other signature "I'm Disabled" sound.

Any player who disables another player is required to perform a victory dance, chant, or make a characteristic noise of their choice.

During the Gold Phase in which a player is disabled there is still a chance for their team to keep them in the game.

They must somehow get at least one hit point gold piece to the just-disabled player before it touches the ground or a player from another team. They can throw a token to the other player. If you are playing with a tally, choose a temporary token to throw or hand, such as a coin, just for this purpose.

It has to come from one of the hit point gold pieces carried by another member of their team, but it could be handed from team member to tram member until it reaches the person who needs it.

The team may work together and fail to get a gold piece to their fallen member even after several tries. If they fail, the player is out until the end of the melee.

So, a player might lose their last melee life point gold piece in the Gold Phase and ask for help from a team mate. The team mate may be too far away to reach and might try to throw the token across the room.

Any members of the other team that are in between are free to try to touch the token while it is in the air to prevent it from being used to allow the disabled player to keep playing.

If they do not get at least one hit point gold piece to the disabled player at this time, the player is disabled until the end of the melee.

Hit point gold pieces are not normally disabled when they are dropped or touched by the other team at other times of the game.

A disabled player remains in the setting and may still interact. They may not move. They may not throw or hand an artifact to another player. Players may not take artifacts from the disabled players, but they may communicate as they wish.

Aside from side effects, the artifacts they carry cannot be used and are also out of the melee like the player who carries them.

Disabled players may not be plundered during a melee, only during exploration mode. However, so long as a player has other gold, they are back after the melee is over, so they cannot be plundered.

Only players who have lost all of their gold and aren't given any in the next movement round are out of the game and can be plundered.

Being plundered is also the normal fate of players who leave a game early. Their presence isn't required. If they take their artifacts, new ones are created by the GM to replace them, so they can be plundered. The plundering will be done.

Disabled players are still required to follow the passive side effects of any artifacts they carry. But, seeing as they lost enough battles to be disabled, their side effect speech should focus on their failure and misery.

They may not attack anyone nor be attacked, so they don't get to participate further until the end of the melee. If their team is doing poorly enough that this happens, it isn't long before the melee is over. But, there are some special rules that can bring disabled players back as a "Zombie" under the control of a different player (even one on the other team!).

Other things a disabled players can occasionally also do (say one of these each time it gets too quiet):
- repent their failure to their ancestors
- recount how their mother wanted them to be a doctor
- recount an example of the unfairness of life
- recount how a good leader wouldn't have allowed them to become disabled
- warn players who are not yet disabled that their doom beckons. Ask if they can hear it beckoning. Occasionally point out actual noises and proudly assert that that is what beckoning doom sounds like, etc.
- moan or wail like a ghost
- take a break and go to the bathroom
- get a refreshing beverage

Surrender (top)
If a team surrenders the melee is scored in favor of the other team. The winning team receives a bonus of one gold piece each, which is given by the GM. The losing team already lost some gold pieces (presumably) and no more are taken from them.

The GM acknowledges the surrender:
d40"The hill giants surrender! The mountain folk are victorious!"

Epilogue (top)

It is permitted for the winning players to perform an abbreviated version of their victory dance, or they may perform a longer "team victory dance that involves all winning players."

The losing team is required to watch whatever victory dances are offered.

It marks the instant end of the melee and the beginning of exploration mode. Disabled players who own no gold may freely receive it from other players on their own team, and sometimes from the GM. So long as they still have some gold they are still in the game.

Surrender means the Minion Monsters return to the side of the GM who gives them rewards or praise or perhaps a cookie, or some combination of those and other things.

The surrendering team listens second at the next door (e.g. in the next melee.)