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talljasperman's avatar

From what reference did Dungeons and Dragons use to describe ability score loss to zero in wisdom and charisma?

Asked by talljasperman (18258 points ) October 17th, 2011

In the internet manual it describes ability score loss to zero as:

 Wisdom 0 means that the character is withdrawn into a deep sleep filled with nightmares, helpless.
 Charisma 0 means that the character is withdrawn into a catatonic, coma-like stupor, helpless.

I’ve felt like this at times and I wonder if there is any basis in reality for these descriptions? Can you guide me to a book or site to where I can learn more on both sides of these subjects on the game side and the psychiatric side?

Topics: Wisdom, Charisma, Dungeons and Dragons, Psychiatry

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3 Answers

jerv's avatar

I know that some games consider Charisma to reflect ones ability to deal with the outside world. As for Wisdom, it is your ability to make sense of the world, and a little bit of your ability to exert your willpower; without it, you cannot control even your own mind.

Foolaholic's avatar

The key word in both of these descriptions is helpless. Wisdom and Charisma are two for your six main abilities, all of which are necessary for your character to function. The point of these afflictions is to seriously hinder any character who takes so much ability damage that said ability is reduced to zero (except Constitution, which at zero indicates death).

I can’t say how much actual psychiatric grounding it has. It’s really just a balancing mechanic.

talljasperman's avatar

@Foolaholic @jerv Thank you both for answering.

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