Critical Hits & Misses

One of the things I like to do in my spare time is to come up with crazy, awesome and out of this world results for critical hits and misses. For those of you who don’t know; a critical hit often refers to a player rolling a 20 on their 20 sided dice. This means that their attack was flawless and they hit their opponent for maximum allowable damage no matter strong the opponent’s armor class or defences are. Dungeon Masters and Dungeon Mistresses(DM) are encouraged to add a little flourish to the attack. For example; In one of my games that I DM for there is a player whose character is a barbarian. Just about every time he rolls a 20 with his weapon he loves to hear me talk about how the villain just turns into a bloody mist of red before his eyes.

Misses can be just as dramatic, or should I say traumatic, to my players. A critical miss is the result of rolling a 1 on with your dice roll. I have been known to have players hit each other or themselves on a critical miss. Just have them roll damage and tell them that during their attack they lost control of their weapon and hit themselves, or they lost hold of their weapon and hit their ally behind them. If I am feeling especially evil, I will have their weapon break in half or have it fly across the room so the player has to chase it. You can even have their weapon dull on them and it does half damage until they can get it to a smith or a tinker to fix.

You as the DM can have a lot of fun with both critical hits and misses, but don’t feel like you have to always be the center of attention either. Once in awhile, I allow my players to tell me what happens when they roll a critical hit or a critical miss. In my experience it tends to be a little more effective to have them tell you what happens in the game when they roll a critical hit. With the misses, with my players at least, they tend to not be as hard on themselves.

Do you have any cool tips or ideas for when your players critically hits or critically misses? Leave a comment below and lets share ideas!

Dungeon Mistress

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