D0 Tests and Free Actions

Is there a rule somewhere that says that D0 Tests can be made as a Free Action?

p. 113 main rule book:

Simple Task
The character may perform any other task that requires a
Simple (D0) skill test or no skill test as a Free Action. If the
character wishes to roll the dice for a Simple (D0) skill test,
then the Skill Test action (page 116) must be taken instead.

That means that if they wish to roll (to generate Momentum, presumably, since D0 tests are expressly forbidden to use the Voluntary Failure option [p. 99].

Cheers, I thought that was the case.

So for example, if I want to use Acrobatics to perform an Exploit Action, and reduce the D1 test to D0 through Nimble as a Cat, I can’t roll, and therefore cannot generate Momentum to use for the Exploit?

You don’t get any Momentum for the Exploit, but your attack gains the Piercing 2 quality (quite powerful to circumvent or penetrate armor), and if you have a weapon with the Unforgiving quality, you set up your opponent to trigger Unforgiving if you hit on your attack.

Take a Zhaibar knife which has the quality of Unforgiving 2.
Without an Exploit action, it does 4[CD] damage without any quality.
After an Exploit action, which adds Piercing 2 and activates Unforgiving, it becomes 4[CD] Piercing 2, Vicious 2, Intense.
That is much more dangerous than before.

Any rolled Effect on the damage dice not does not only the basic 1 point of damage, but +2 points from Vicious 2 and triggers Piercing 2 and, if you cause a Wound, it will cause another Wound.
If you rolled 1, 0, Effect, Effect on your damage dice,
without Exploit: 3 damage total. (3 damage will against an opponent which still has more than 3 Vigor not cause a wound, and if the opponent has armour, it will cause even less Vigor loss - no Wound)
with Exploit: 7 damage, Piercing 4, Intense total. (The 7 damage with the high piercing value will very likely cause a wound, so this attack will cause 2 Wounds total.)


Yep thanks Frank, that’s pretty much what I thought! Pay 2 Momentum to trigger the Assassin Talent (if you have it), then even more damage! :grinning:

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I don’t think that is accurate. The Exploit action specifically states (p116) “In situations where the skill test’s Difficulty is Simple (D0), Exploit may be used as a Free Action.” For me this means even if you opt to roll the dice, it is still a free action, because Exploit says so. And since you are rolling the dice, you can generate Momentum (and Complications).

Conan core rules, p.113

A Free Action can never include a skill test where dice are rolled.
If an action requires a skill test, it is not a Free Action.

If you roll dice on a D0 tests, as in this case a D0 Exploit action, it is no longer a Free Action.


In situations where the skill test’s Difficulty is Simple (D0), Exploit may be used as a Free Action.

Usually, the Exploit Action is a D1 Standard Action which requires a skill test.
In certain situations - like having the appropriate Talent - it can become a D0 test. If you don’t roll dice, this is a Free Action. If you choose to roll dice, it becomes a D0 Standard Action.


OK granted, I think your interpretation does make more sense.

Dang, I didn’t complete my own sentence in my earlier post!

Frank F. does a good job of explaining the mechanics. My last sentence should have been (without the parens):

“That means that if they wish to roll to generate Momentum, they can.”

At the cost of a Standard Action, a character with a Simple (D0) task can generate Momentum, and because it’s a D0 test, will generate 1 more Momentum than they would otherwise have done.

In the case of the Exploit action, it means that you either have to attack the next round, pay the Swift Action Momentum Spend cost (which raises the Difficulty), or spend a Fortune Point to get a Swift Action at the normal Difficulty. That might or might not be the tactically right choice, but the point here is that you have a lot of options.

In summary: D0 test without rolling (and therefore no possibility of either generating Momentum or Complications) are Free Actions. D0 test with rolling is a Standard Action and can generate both Momentum and Complications, and because it’s D0, a single success has already generated 1 Momentum!

Generating a lot of Momentum is the key to a party hacking their way through their opponents, so were I to have the opportunity to take a D0 rolled action, it would be quite tempting!

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That does rather depend on your build though. For someone using a dagger, for example, you want to have an Exploit in place in order to satisfy the conditions of the Unforgiving Quality of the weapon. If in addition you have the Assassin Talent, and aim to spend Momentum to trigger it and a make every CD into an effect, then I would say your main obejective would be a D0 Free Action without rolling. Unless you have Momentum to burn, of course.

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