A Lazy Sequence

Burning Wheel: help and FoRKs with beginner’s luck

The applicability of helping dice and FoRKs on beginner’s luck tests has comes up multiple times in my Burning Wheel games recently, and has caused me confusion. I’m writing down what I think is the correct interpretation here.

Beginner’s luck is a stat test: If a character does not have an appropriate skill for a test, he may test using a stat instead.… (BWGR pg. 37, Unskilled Tests [emphasis mine]). This is the key detail for understanding the applicability of help and FoRKs.


A character testing beginner’s luck may receive help.

Skills may help skills and stats. Stats may help stats (BWGR pg. 36, How Can I Help?), and because this is a stat test, help is applicable.

Fields of Related Knowledge

A character testing beginner’s luck may not FoRK in other skills.

When testing a skill, each related skill the character possesses can be used like help… (BWGR pg. 36, Fields of Related Knowledge). This is not a skill test, so no FoRKs are applicable.

23 February 2021


I’ve written various pieces of software over the years. They are cataloged here along, with their maintenance status.


Like any Tabletop RPG player I occasionally create aids and utilities to support the games in playing at my table. This page collects together various apps, one off pages, and notable blogposts for easy access.

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