The Thief class in Dungeon World has an advanced move called Evasion:


When you defy danger on a 12+, you transcend the danger. You not only do what you set out to, but the GM will offer you a better outcome, true beauty, or a moment of grace.

A better outcome is pretty clear to me, but what on earth do "true beauty" and "a moment of grace" mean?


When Dungeon World cribs from Apocalypse World, look to Apocalypse World to explain.

This is especially obvious in the basic Defy Danger move, where it doesn't really spend the time to discuss the outcomes the way Apocalypse World does, but fortunately the word choice points the way back to Act Under Fire.

And hey, it does it again! Here's what happens if you stick around long enough to advance Act Under Fire, which this is also cribbing from:

On a 12+, you transcend the danger, the pressure, the possibility of harm. You do what you set out to do, and the MC will offer you a better outcome, true beauty, or a moment of grace.

Tall order! So much depends on the details of the character's actions and the circumstances. If you know what the character's hoping for beyond the immediate, you can give it to her, that's probably easiest. Another thing you can do is have what the player's character does affect the NPCs witnessing it -- they're struck, awed, moved, taken aback, left breathless.

-- AW2e, "Improvement", p.265

So if the Defy Danger was in service of something, let that succeed too, no rolling. (If it was a backstab, treat it like a 10+.)

If it wasn't, but the Thief's among friends and foes, they can pass the benefits of the distraction off to someone else.

If they aren't, and only foes are around, they're just watching in awe.

If they aren't, well, surely someone's around to see what the Thief just pulled and be impressed.

If no one is, how sure of that are you?

If you're sure, well, "you show off and feel fantastic, take +1 forward" isn't a bad consolation prize.

  • \$\begingroup\$ While looking at AW might provide useful color, I would not recommend it for general DW advice. \$\endgroup\$ – okeefe Apr 24 at 15:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ In cases like "a better outcome, true beauty, or a moment of grace", where it's matching AW word for word, and its own explanations are lacking or missing, where else is there to look? \$\endgroup\$ – Glazius Apr 24 at 19:23
  • \$\begingroup\$ What would you do if you were reading/playing AW? You could interpret the rules and try to come up with something inspirational or amazing or, falling that, something better than what the player wanted. That's what DW asked you to do. \$\endgroup\$ – okeefe Apr 24 at 19:31

Seems to me that if you're playing the thief you or the gm get to describe something extra cool. Something amazing!

For example: if you were dodging arrows maybe you're able to snatch one out of the air while doing a backflip. Or: you not only dodge the blow from the ogre, you're also able to use his own strength against him and send him running into the wall.

Would all depend on what is happening fictionally at the time! :)

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    \$\begingroup\$ So is the gist of this response that "true beauty" and "a moment of grace" are completely defined by the player/gm interaction? That is fair, but I don't see how they differ from "a better outcome" necessarily. \$\endgroup\$ – BlackVegetable Jun 25 '17 at 14:34
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    \$\begingroup\$ @BlackVegetable They add a flavor to the "better outcome". You don't just get really far out of the danger's way, you avoid it in a particularly beautiful or graceful way. \$\endgroup\$ – Dave Sherohman Jun 26 '17 at 10:03
  • \$\begingroup\$ Yeah; They are examples of "a better outcome" here, I think. \$\endgroup\$ – Airk Jun 26 '17 at 14:07
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    \$\begingroup\$ @BlackVegetable as you play Dungeon World you will increasingly appreciate that in DW the fiction is the game; the numbers are very much secondary. A moment of grace is a fantastic opportunity to enable the PC to succeed forward in interesting and exceptional ways. \$\endgroup\$ – glenatron Jun 29 '17 at 15:25
  • \$\begingroup\$ Ok. The wording was what confused me. I saw it as the GM will give you one of these three mutually exclusive options: A, B and C. Not, you'll get a better outcome that will be A or B or C where B and C are really just helpful descriptions for A. \$\endgroup\$ – BlackVegetable Jun 29 '17 at 16:47

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