The Two, Four, Six, Rule
A Task will fit into one of the following categories.
Simple: Requiring a 2 or more to succeed.
Challenging: Requiring a 4 or more to succeed.
Formidable: Requiring a 6 or more to succeed.
Whenever a Task is rolled, three six-sided dice are thrown.
A character that is completely unskilled in the Task uses the lowest die.
A character that has basic understanding of the Task uses the middle die.
A character that is skilled in the Task uses the highest die.
When all else fails, if you are unsure what to do in a situation, roll a single die. If this is high the situation goes in favour of the character in question. If it is low if goes against them. This could be used to determine anything from whether or not a character makes a good first impression to whether or not they survive a potentially deadly injury. In the case of the latter a roll of 1 would often mean death.
Glossary of Terms
Task: A Task is something the characters cannot carry out with certainty. This could be because of opposition, a time limit or high risk in the event of failure. The GM will assign the Task a difficulty using the Two, Four, Six rule based on the character's abilities, equipment and support from their allies. The GM then rolls the Task, using the High, Mid, Low Rule to decide which die to use, describing the result to the players. Tasks could be interrogating a suspect, casting a spell or avoiding incoming bullet fire.
Example of Play
Red: Ok, I'll take the shot.
[The GM rolls a Challenging task, which Red is skilled in thanks to his "Sniping" Skill, resulting in a success. Had Mike attempted the shot with their Handgun it would have been Formidable instead]
GM: The chain is shot with a clean break, sending Hannah dropping to the ground, collapsing in a heap but not badly hurt. Murca's henchmen return fire on Red, having given up his position.
Red: I'm out of here. Make a break for the exit.
[The GM rolls a Challenging task for Red to avoid being shot as he flees, which he fails. To see how bad the wound is the GM uses Rule X, rolling a 5. Surely just a flesh wound.]
Mike: I'll follow!
GM: Red is hurt by a glancing shot from Murca's henchmen, but Mike manages to help him to safety. Now that you're out of the base you're faced with countless bloodthirsty henchmen in one direction and a frozen wilderness in the other.
Mike: Can't we call in for the Colonel to come and pick us up? I have that radio.
[The GM rolls a Simple task to call for help, assuming that Mike has an Average skill in using his radio, resulting in a success. He uses Rule X to see how long before support arrives, rolling a 1. Not good for our players.]
GM: You get through to the Colonel, who's already airborn with his helicopter. "I'd pick you up right now, boys, but there's still a SAM site that's making the run less appealling. Take care of that and I'll be right there".
Red: Great, well how do we knock out that SAM site?
GM: Red is bleeding pretty badly. Not life-threatening at the moment but you're not in top shape for much physical activity.
Mike: Listen up, I've got a plan...
As well as the three play-rules used in gameplay there are some guidelines that all players and the GM should follow.
1: The players do not need to know any of the rules or how the GM is implementing them.
2: The GM will roll all dice and has the final decision over tasks, their difficulty and the Skills and abilities of each players' character.
3: The GM will choose each character's Skills and Abilities based on the player's description of their character and their background.
4: If a player's character is killed or otherwise removed from a game the GM will soon present an opportunity for that player to rejoin the game as another character.
5: A player can leave the game without any ill feeling. Similarly, new players should always be welcome within limits. The GM will find ways to bring in new players' characters as soon as possible.
Now, imagine an adventure your players would enjoy, using a module if you wish, and start playing!