I've been playing Low Magic Age, which appears to be a computer game based closely on the rules for D&D 3.5e. However, as I haven't played pen-and-paper RPGs I'm not familiar with the terminology, so would like some clarification from a D&D perspective.

I find 'fortitude' confusing, both in Great Fortitude and in general. I do not know whether or not it is good, bad or whatever. I did look up what fortitude is and the explanation is more than confusing. I did also look up What happens if Fortitude sinks to 0? as well as searching for 'fortitude'.

Could someone please explain what Fortitude is.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Welcome to the site! This seems to be the first question about this game, so I'm adding a new tag for it, in case we get more later. \$\endgroup\$
    – Erik
    Jan 24, 2021 at 10:17
  • \$\begingroup\$ You could change the title; asking what fortitude is in RPGs is a very broad question. And it seems you're wondering about the term as it is used in a specific game. \$\endgroup\$
    – Anagkai
    Jan 24, 2021 at 10:28
  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ From what I can gather, Low Magic Age appears to be a computer game based on the D&D 3.5e rules (using WotC's OGL). Normally computer games are off topic here (even if they are called RPGs), but questions pertaining to pen-and-paper RPGs like D&D are fine. Would a more accurate question be "What does Fortitude mean in D&D?" (with Low Magic Age being some context) \$\endgroup\$
    – BBeast
    Jan 24, 2021 at 10:33
  • \$\begingroup\$ @BBeast I did not know that computer rpg games were forbidden. In any case, I have clarified and given some more background about the game. \$\endgroup\$
    – shirish
    Jan 24, 2021 at 10:40
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    \$\begingroup\$ Probably should even more specific than “D&D,” and go with “D&D 3.5e” ([dnd-3.5e]) since that’s what this game is (appears to be?) based on. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Jan 24, 2021 at 14:18

1 Answer 1


Fortitude is physical endurance/resilience

Fortitude - at least in the sense used in 3rd and 4th edition Dungeons & Dragons - is a character's physical endurance/resilience to harmful effects. In 3e/3.5e D&D, characters have a Fortitude Saving Throw bonus, which is added to their rolls to resist appropriate effects; in 4e, characters have a Fortitude Defence, which is a number (like Armour Class) that someone trying to apply a harmful effect has to overcome in order to successfully affect them. As the 3.5e SRD describes:

These saves measure your ability to stand up to physical punishment or attacks against your vitality and health.

It is unfortunate that D&D's designers chose to use the term "fortitude", given that the normal English meaning of the word refers to mental resilience, but it's the obsolete definition meaning "strength" which they're invoking here.

The kind of effects that would be resisted by a character's Fortitude include (but are not limited to) things like:

  • being poisoned
  • being afflicted by a disease
  • being nauseated by a foul smell
  • being knocked down by a blast of wind
  • being petrified (turned to stone) by a spell or monster

This is contrast to the character's Reflex save/defence, which is how good they are at nimbly evading some harmful effects, and their Willpower save/defence, which is a measure of their mental strength against effects like charms and illusions.

Great Fortitude, specifically, is a feat which improves the character's Fortitude - in 3e it grants a +2 bonus to Fortitude saving throws. I'm not sure if an equivalent exists in 4e, as I'm far less familiar with that game.

Low Magic Age looks like it is mostly derived from 3rd edition D&D rules, but from the screenshots it looks as if it might have borrowed the 4e mechanic of replacing Saving Throws with Defences - I'm not interested in buying the game to find out exactly how it works.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you for that. I didn't expect or would expect you to buy the game to understand how it works. Taking time out and sharing what is known in rpg games is close enough. And the game seems to share a lot at least from its steam app age, thank you again. \$\endgroup\$
    – shirish
    Jan 24, 2021 at 16:11
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    \$\begingroup\$ @shirish I wishlisted it, will check it out when it next goes on sale. It's been a while since I've seen a decent 3.5/Pathfinder computer conversion that actually tries to copy the rules (most of them replace the combat system with a real-time variant where you have extremely little control over your characters), I'll come post a new answer when I get it if it's different than this, but this is almost certainly correct given the source material. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 24, 2021 at 18:38

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