Morale Rolls

According to the rules “The Judge usually makes morale rolls under two conditions: when one side of an encounter has lost a member due to death,
or when half the group on one side is either killed or otherwise

According to the Judge’s Screen “Monster morale is checked when…
– One group has 1st member incapacitated*”

This raises two questions:

First off, which text is correct- Is morale rolled after every death, or only the first death?

Second off, both texts use wording that seems to indicate that it doesn’t matter which group has members dying. Does this mean that PCs dying can provoke morale rolls on the part of the monsters, meaning that orcs might retreat after slaying a single PC?

I would be loose with reasons for checking morale. For instance, a chimera suddenly bursting onto the scene might cause a morale check even in 4th level henchmen. An ogre swinging its way into a room might cause all first level henchmen to scatter.

Sure, special circumstances definitely warrant morale checks, but I was asking specifically about when morale checks should happen during a fairly run of the mill skirmish.

Morale is rolled after the first death, on your side. I don’t think the ogres are going to run away because they killed a PC! After that, just when half your group is dead.

“When one side of an encounter has lost a member due to death” does not read as the first member to me. I usually roll after each death.

To be honest, though, morale is one of the most confusing parts of the game, and causes me a good deal of consternation.

I agree the wording isn’t entirely clear, but it wouldn’t make sense to have one group kill a member of another group, then potentially surrender because of it.

If it was after every death, it wouldn’t make sense to have the second condition, when half the members are incapacitated. It would be redundant.

Unless you were supposed to check twice after that particular guy’s death. But I agree - I interpret it as “Morale check at first casualty for your side, then another morale check when you pass 50% casualties.” The first death indicates a raising of the stakes from potentially non-lethal to very clearly lethal, which might cause morale to break. After that it’s only when you start looking at “Crap, we might all die” that morale needs to be checked again.

This is the correct interpretation.