As of this evening I am adding in something a bit Arthurian for our home campaign. Dolorous Wounds.

I saw this float past me on Owen K Stephen’s Google + Stream and immediately recognized it as something that would be great in a Planescape game. Here is his take on it followed by my own note on how it will be implemented in our home game. Players take heed, it is in effect as of next game and has already been integrated into the campaign wiki!

Some wounds do not answer to even the most powerful magic healing. When a character would normally be killed, the player may instead choose for the character to suffer a “dolorous wound.” The dolorous wound produces some physical ailment, agreed upon by player and the GM (normally a -1 penalty to one category of skill checks, most often Str, Dex, Con, or Cha-based skills, though a penalty to range modifier for losing an eye or a reduction of movement rate for a limp are also appropriate). The dolorous wound is so severe the damage is duplicated on the character’s soul, making it impossible to heal with normal magic. A special ritual may be able to fix a dolorous wound, but it has at least the cost and difficulty of a true resurrection spell.

DM Note: This option will only be available when offered by the DM. Dolorous wounds do not result from regular combat, the circumstances are always something legendary.

Many thanks to Owen for posting this as Open Content. If you use it elsewhere here is the correct Sec 15 entry for your OGL:  Rules+. Copyright Owen K.C. Stephens 2010-2011; Author Owen K.C. Stephens.