Two distinct methods allow your GM to create a sense of difficulty without allowing for the prospect of failure: the arduous automatic victory, and the costly automatic victory. Your GM will use a costly automatic victory where failure offers no entertaining plot branches, but when they still want the group to work for victory. In a costly automatic victory, you succeed, but at a price.
2.17.1 Arduous Automatic Victory
Your GM will use an arduous automatic victory to help with pacing. They will simply allow you to succeed without a contest, and then describe in sweat-inducing detail your hard-won victory. Unlike the standard automatic victory, the objective here is not to make you feel competent (though it may do that as well) but to emphasize the rigors of your grueling task, preserving suspension of disbelief.
2.17.2 Costly Automatic Victory
Your GM may use a costly automatic victory where failure offers no entertaining plot branches, but they still want you to work for victory. In a costly automatic victory, you succeed, but at a price.
Even if you suffer a defeat, you still overcome the story obstacle. You also, however, suffer a state of adversity to one or more abilities, in keeping with the defeat level, as per the consequences of defeat table.
The state of adversity might apply, as in an ordinary contest, to the abilities you used in that contest. Usually, though, they apply to some other resource-related ability, which may come to haunt you later on. When in doubt, ask yourself if the penalty will cripple the group in dealing with contests.
- 2.1 Abilities
- 2.2 Possessions and Equipment
- 2.3 Contest Procedure
- 2.4 Augments
- 2.5 Advanced Mechanics
- 2.6 Resolution Methods
- 2.7 Resistance Progression
- 2.8 Degree of Victory or Defeat
- 2.9 Benefits and Consequences
- 2.10 Modifiers
- 2.11 Combined Abilities
- 2.12 Mobs, Gangs, and Hordes
- 2.13 Ganging Up
- 2.14 Mass Effort
- 2.15 Pyrrhic Victories
- 2.16 Mismatched and Graduated Goals