2.16 Mismatched and Graduated Goals

Sometimes, the two sides in a contest may have goals that do not directly conflict one another. A huntsman pursues a nurse, who is trying to escape through the forest with two small children. The huntsman wants to kill the nurse. The nurse wants to save the children.

When encountering mismatched goals, your GM should determine whether the mismatch is complete, or partial.

In a complete mismatch, neither side is at all interested in preventing the other’s goal. A complete mismatch does not end in a contest; your GM asks what you are doing, and then describes each participant succeeding at their goals.

In most instances, the contest goals are not actually mismatched, but graduated. You have both a primary and a secondary goal. In this case, your GM frames the contest, identifying which goal is which. To achieve both, you must score a major or complete victory. On a minor or marginal victory, you achieve only the primary goal. Your GM may present you with the choice of which objective you obtain, where that choice illuminates your PC’s priorities.

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