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Primary Name
Year Zero Engine
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Description Edit | History

From Mutant: Year Zero - Starter Booklet:

Here follows a condensed version of the Year Zero Engine rules. To play, you will need a number of six-sided dice in three different colors.


To use a skill, roll a number of Skill Dice (green) equal to your skill level, and a number of Base Dice (yellow) equal to the current value of the attribute connected to the skill. If you are using gear, you also get a number of Gear Dice (black) equal to the Gear Bonus. For your action to succeed, you must roll at least one six.

Opposed Roll: When the rules call for an opposed roll, both you and your opponent roll for a skill. You need to roll more sixes than your opponent to succeed.


If you are desperate to succeed, you can push your roll. That means you grab all dice that didn’t show ones and sixes, and roll them again. You get a new shot at rolling sixes, but ones on Base Dice and Gear Dice have special effects when you push:

  • For every Base Dice one on the table after a pushed roll, you suffer one point of trauma against the attribute you used for the skill. You also gain one Mutation Point (MP).
  • For every Gear Dice one on the table after a pushed roll, the Gear Bonus of the item you used drops one step.


There are twelve basic skills in the game, and one specialist
skill for each role. Each skill is connected to one attribute.

  • Endure (Strength): When the Zone takes its toll, when your legs won’t carry you any more, roll for Endure.
  • Force (Strength): When wreckage or debris block your way and you need to push or lift something heavy, roll for Force.
  • Fight (Strength): Roll for this skill when you attack someone in close combat. If you succeed, you inflict Weapon Damage. For every extra six, you inflict one more point of damage.
  • Sneak (Agility): To move undetected, you must make an opposed roll using your Sneak score versus your enemy’s Scout score.
  • Move (Agility): To get out of danger or to make a difficult climb or jump, roll to Move.
  • Shoot (Agility): Roll for this skill when you fire a weapon at someone. If you succeed, you inflict Weapon Damage. For every extra six, you inflict one more point of damage. Each shot with a ranged weapon consumes one bullet or arrow. They also, except for some artifacts, need to be reloaded (costs one maneuver) after every shot.
  • Scout (Wits): When trying to spot a Sneaking enemy, roll to Scout.
  • Comprehend (Wits): Use this skill to understand an artifact from the Old Age.
  • Know the Zone (Wits): Roll for this skill to identify a monster or phenomena in the Zone, and to know its traits or effects.
  • Sense Emotion (Empathy): Use this skill to resist attempts to Manipulate you, or to read another person’s state of mind.
  • Manipulate (Empathy): When trying to persuade, trick or seduce someone, roll an opposed roll using your Manipulate score against your opponent’s Sense Emotion. If you win, you opponent must offer you a reasonable deal.
  • Heal (Empathy): Roll to get a broken friend back on his feet. Success means he recovers one attribute point.
  • Intimidate (Strength): Roll when you use your sheer physical presence to get someone to do what you want. If you succeed, your opponent must do what you want or immediately attack you.


Conflicts are played in turns. At the beginning of the first turn, everyone who takes part rolls for initiative – a simple D6 roll. Mutations and talents can affect the roll. The initiative roll sets the action sequence for all turns in the conflict.
Actions & Maneuvers: When it’s your turn, you are allowed to perform one action and one maneuver, or two maneuvers. An action can be to:

  • Use a skill
  • Activate a mutation

A maneuver can be to:

  • Move one range step
  • Seek cover
  • Get an item from your gear
  • Pick up an item from the ground
  • Draw a weapon
  • Reload a gun


When you use a skill and push the roll, you can suffer trauma. This temporarily reduces the attribute score you used for the skill. If your attribute score reaches zero you are broken – unable to get up on your feet or use any skill for D6 hours or until someone Heals you. At that point, you regain one attribute point and can recover normally.
Recovery: The requirements for recovery depends on type of trauma:

  • Damage (trauma to Strength): Some rest and a ration of grub per trauma point.
  • Fatigue (trauma to Agility): Some rest and a ration of grub per trauma point.
  • Confusion (trauma to Wits): At least four hours of sleep.
  • Doubt (trauma to Empathy): A moment of closeness with another mutant. It can be a talk by the campfire, a moment of shared silence, or physical contact.

More Information Edit | History
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