The Legend - Death, Fame & Experience

Going “out of action” in a game of Dead Man’s Hand is not necessarily fatal. Characters may just be lightly wounded, their courage failing under intense fire or suffering from a serious but non-life threatening gunshot. Of course, it may also mean that the target is dead and being measured up for a coffin as his still-warm body still twitches. At the end of a scene, each player draws a card to determine each character’s fate. using a normal DMH full deck and consulting the table in the book.

Some injuries permanently affect a character, some have no game effect, and some can even be beneficial, life-changing experiences that really make a man out of a guy! 

After you finish a scene and determine injuries, it's time to spend some of the Fame you've just earned. Winning and losing sides earn Fame and it has to be spent immediately after the scene. One Fame must be spent on giving a gang member experience. The rest may be spent on hiring more men, developing a new scheme or getting guns and horses. 

“As your reputation begins to grow in town it is important todecide how your gang is going to grow and continue growing.The most obvious method is to increase your numbers as gunson the street provide a definite advantage. These numbers needsupporting though so more schemes need to be added to keepthe money flowing. Sometimes the difference in a fight can bethe weapons your men are armed with; nothing closes the gapbetween men’s quality like a shotgun. A balanced approach isalways the best way forward, focus on the final goal to stopyourself getting sidetracked with ideas of killing folks.”

Characters may improve attributes or gain new skills as their gunfighting career progresses. As with injuries, the card deck is used to determine character advancement. The experience gained varies according to the card value, suit and whether the card drawn is your ownsuit or not. Some results allow a character to unlock access to certain extra experience tables. The "amateur" class of character has their own skill table which may see their career divert into gunfighting or stay on a civilian path.

Most of the skills available will greatly benefit a man's worth in a gunfight but beware, some results may see the effective end of a promising career...

Players can tailor their characters quite flexibly. You may want a big gang of eager lawmen, or you may want a compact band where one man is the stand-out, Clint Eastwood type, a living legend of the West. Just remember that a bullet has no concept of reputation.