Sword & Wizardry {OSR} Optional Rules - Threshold Save

The following is a Snippet from before the quiet time of the Desolation of the Pyramid.



Threshold is a character's ability to fight back the chilling grasp of Death and stop herself from crossing the Threshold of Life and Death.

When a character dies she rolls the Saving Throw for her class with a modifier equal to the amount of negative HP she currently has. If, however, the character's HP is - 10 or lower there is no way to stave off Death except through magical or divine decree.

A character who makes her Saving Throw is alive but too weak to do anything except basic functions for 1d6 hours and takes a 2 session hindrance from a table percentage table I never created.


Barbie the Barbarian has 6hp and is struck for 12 placing her at - 6.  As a 4th level Fighter she has a Saving Throw of 11.  Not yet ready to die, the Barbarian spits a curse to her cruel gods and fights against her death. Barbie's player rules her Save needing a 17 (St 11 + NHP 6), luckily she rolls an 18 and Barbie can live to fight another day. 


Threshold was never playtested as the Desolation of the Pyramid took too much out of me (hell still recovering from that) and life itself conspired against me with college and work.

If anyone implements the Threshold roll please tell me how it works for you. 


  1. I like it. I'm hoping to run sw soon. So I'll give it a try, after we get a session in.

  2. Nice simple, and evocative of past systems. I would also make anyone that survived this take a scar of some kind that would be a role playing tool, be it mental or physical (player's choice)


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