"What would you roll for that?"

All purpose thread to discuss or declare what you would ask players to roll to do a task. Or extended task or challenge.

Here are a few I am wondering about for a game I am working on:

  • Playing 3D chess
  • Programming or editing a holodeck adventure
  • Recalling a line from an old earth movie/other trivia
  • Holding your liquor (assume a human) while drinking a Romulan Ale

Add your own!

How I’d rule those ones, off the top of my head:

Playing chess, 3D or otherwise, could easily be done in a number of ways, with different players favouring different approaches. Reason is probably the best attribute, as it covers logic and the like, but either Daring (for bold ploys and cunning gambits) or Insight (for judging your opponent and trying to predict what they’ll do) might work too. Command and Security both contain elements of strategy and tactics, so either of those work nicely, but Science (covering puzzles, analysis, and similar) works too. I imagine that Spock favoured a Reason + Science approach, while Kirk may be more Daring + Command.

Holoprogramming would commonly be Control + Engineering - a mixture of precision and technical knowledge - but a lot of holodeck technology seems fairly intuitive, so I imagine that you might substitute a different Discipline depending on what you’re trying to simulate. A combat simulation might use Security, experimental computations (using the holodeck to simulate a dangerous experiment) might use Science, medical or therapeutic holography might use Medicine.

Recalling trivia is likely to rely on Insight or Reason (instincts or logic), but the Discipline is likely to be whatever feels right at the time, or the context of the situation.

Holding your drink… that’s Fitness, and then either Security (as a general “tough guy” Discipline) or Medicine (for knowing how it affects the body and acting accordingly).


I would do the 3d chess as an extended task, but with the opponent working at the same time. I would do something like both players/characters rolling against each other, with Reason (as standard) and probably Command, but i would allow whoever won two in a row to try to “check” the opponent with Daring vs Insight, and if they won THAT try to “check mate” with Daring vs Reason.

I prefer to make it a bit more thematic!


Personally when I’ve had a chess game going on, I’ve actually ruled it as being a Conn task. Partly because it involves a lot of path finding, avoiding obstacles (traps set by opponents strategy), and also because I don’t run a PC Conn officer, meaning neither player had an advantage purely from their main job role. I can see the arguments for security or command as well, so would allow my players to pitch a different approach. Almost definately reason for me.


Conn is actually a good call

Tailing a suspect through a dense urban neighborhood.

I would allow Control, Insight, or Reason with Security for that one.

Thats gonna need more than one task at very least. Possibly even an extended task?

Probably throw in a Fitness Security/Conn if it turned into a chase. Reason Conn or Insight Security as possible ways of working out where they are going or to head them off.

To be honest, that one is very open depending on what they are trying to achieve. I’d also be likely to offer situations and choices rather than just making it about the rolls.



How about save vs some kind of mind control? - Dagger of the Mind - That machine which Kirk was partially able to resist.


I’d likely go with an opposed task using Control + Command to resist.

I’d have the tailing a suspect be a series of opposed rolls… seeing who gets the most successes total over multiple rounds.

Let’s get things straight I’m a newbie as far as ST:A is concerned:

Playing 3D chess would be Reasoning IF you are playing against a Vulcan, you might bet on Daring when playing against another race, trying a bold move to destabilize them but it ain’t gonna work against mister Logic.

Programming or editing a holodeck shouldn’t require any roll at all since anyone seems to be able to make a costumed program.

Recalling a trivia thing seems to be reasoning + the discipline liked to the ting you’re trying to remember.

As holding your liquor it depends: it could be fitness+security but I wouldn’t be shocked with Fitness + Engineering for someone trying to hold his liquor while repairing something or Fitness + Science for someone trying to clear his mind in front of a science puzzle.

I’d say knowledge-related stuff is mostly Insight. Reason is more logic and analysis, like mathematics or playing chess.

Disciplines vary greatly, depending on the situation and the narrative.

When playing chess, Command and Security could be used when playing very strategically or tactically, Science could be used if you play very logically.

Same as resisting alcohol: Powering through is Security, trying to counteract the effects by drinking a lot of water is Medicine.

When recalling a movie or trivia, the Discipline should match the subject matter. Security for a military movie, Conn for an adventure, Command for comedy, Science or Engineering for a documentary, Medicine for a medical drama.

What I like about this system is that what you roll depends a lot on how you do it. The GM might propose a choice he thinks as being obvious but a player might be able to challenge it by being creative.

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I have a question. How would you handle a Doctor working against a disease loose on their ship. I would say an extended task. But how would you simulate the Disease’s ability to spread and mutate. I was thinking about making the disease a sort of limited NPC that would work an apposed extended task. Give it an attribute called lethality, and a Discipline called Virulence and use those to roll its task of spreading. How does that sound

Sounds like a solid basis for an idea; would you only oppose the doctor’s individual rolls, or would you have the disease roll on its own to affect the track (removing work done, and with enough rolls, even increasing the number of breakthroughs needed as the disease mutates)?

I can see, from my designer’s perspective, that both options have their uses.

If it’s only about spreading of the disease, I’d simply model a timeline of events that can be modified in accordance with the results of the doctor’s rolls on their extended task. Simply, a race against time (if breakthrough x is not reached by time-index y, z happens; if breakthrough a is not met b time-steps after z, c happens, and so forth).

For mutations, I think I would let the disease indeed affect the doctor’s work track. In addition to the effects @Modiphius-Nathan suggested, I would also think of increasing the complication range of the doctor’s rolls. Vice versa, complications on doctor’s rolls could grant the disease an advantage, e.g. lowering the threshhold for one roll or until the next breakthrough is achieved.