Monday, December 17, 2018

Just a quick thought about healing magic

I like weird, low fantasy settings, where magic is alien and dangerous. So I'm not a fan of the instantaneous, no-risk magic healing that's a staple to fantasy RPGs. I wrote about this before.

So, if I want magic to be inherently alien, and opposed to the natural order of things, the easiest way to go is treat a "benevolent" healing spell as you would a curse: the target of the spell must make a save or a resistance roll. There is no option to "let the spell take effect". If a character can shake off a curse or hex, then why should the reality-bending, flesh-mending healing be different?

Consequently, if the character rolls a save against poison, then why not roll against healing potions as well?


  1. I like this idea.

    In my homebrew, healing potions would probably be a STR Save (I've collapsed STR & CON into each other), and STR Saves are less potent if you've taken a lot of damage, so when PCs most desperately need a healing potion, it's more likely (but not certain) to work.

    I like how that works.

    1. "STR Saves are less potent if you've taken a lot of damage"

      Indeed, that's a cool effect! Healing potions vs the death spiral!