Ability Score Damage in 4e?

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I was thinking about introducing a Desiccating weapon (Adventurer's Vault 1) in my campaign, but I am unsure about what side effects this could produce.


The property of a Dessicating weapon states,

"Each time you hit with this weapon, your target



takes a cumulative –1 penalty to its Fortitude defense



(save ends). One saving throw ends the entire penalty,



though the target can receive the penalty again with



future attacks."


That's all well and good for attacks that target Fort, but I was wondering what would happen if you reduced an enemy's Fort to 0.  Would that be like reducing a creature's CON to 0, which kills them?  Is there are precedent for ability score damage in 4e?  


I think the lowest Fortitude defense I've seen on a monster is 11.  If a monster can somehow survive being hit 11 times without already dying to the hit point damage, someone is doing something wrong.
Say this character is a ranger with twin strike and some of those abilities that allow you to make an attack with an off-hand as a minor.  Action points too.

Granted that's still a stretch, but I am asking this question theoretically.

There're probably some upper level brutes that can take 5 or 6 rounds of damage, no?  Maybe not.
Say this character is a ranger with twin strike and some of those abilities that allow you to make an attack with an off-hand as a minor.  Action points too.

Granted that's still a stretch, but I am asking this question theoretically.

There're probably some upper level brutes that can take 5 or 6 rounds of damage, no?  Maybe not.



Only if you're facing monsters,like, eight levels higher than you (at which point, you're not going to hit them, so no penalty, so you're back to square one).
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It's theoretically possible to hit a monster infinite times --use a melee basic attack with your Str 8, no static mods, no quarry, no critical hits, and string infinite 19's on your attack rolls while rolling a 1 on your damage dice (netting 0 damage every hit)-- it's just not very likely.

In the highly unlikely event that you do drop a creature's Fort defense to 0, the rules don't say anything special happens (neither in the general case nor specifically noted in the item), so nothing special happens.
In the highly unlikely event that you do drop a creature's Fort defense to 0, the rules don't say anything special happens (neither in the general case nor specifically noted in the item), so nothing special happens.

And a 1 on an attack roll versus Fort would still be an auto-miss.

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That's all well and good for attacks that target Fort, but I was wondering what would happen if you reduced an enemy's Fort to 0.  Would that be like reducing a creature's CON to 0, which kills them?  Is there are precedent for ability score damage in 4e?  





There are no rules on ability score damage in 4e, since it does not exist.  In the unlikely event that you could reduce a target's fort defence to 0, the only effect is that their fort defence is 0. 

In the highly unlikely event that you do drop a creature's Fort defense to 0, the rules don't say anything special happens (neither in the general case nor specifically noted in the item), so nothing special happens.



Yes, this.  Nothing SAYS something happens, so nothing happens.

(beyond, y'know, that guy's Fort being REALLY easy to hit.)
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