Newb Gumshoe question about Difficulty levels

Hello fellow gumshoes,

Do you tell your players what the target difficulty number is for a test or just have one in mind and say you succeed or fail?

Thank you in advance for your clarification!


  • It's actually up to induvidual GMs to choose how they like to do this, and some switch between both options depending on the game in question, or even the mood in certain settings.

    Trail of Cthulhu suggests both options, but it depends on the mode. For a Pulp game it might be good to tell the players the difficulty, while the numbers probably should be kept secret in a Purist game.

    Also, with new players, letting them now what they're aiming for might be good, but as they get used to the system you might want to switch over to not telling them target number.
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