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'Bernard Wingrave'
United States
Wyoming
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I find some of the barrier cards pretty confusing. I don't have specific examples at the moment (can look for some when I'm home) but some general questions:

1. If I fail a check to defeat a barrier, do I subtract the difficulty of the check minus my result and take that much damage?

2. If I fail a check to defeat a barrier, how do I know whether the barrier gets shuffled back into that location deck or is banished? (Obviously if the card says to banish it, I banish it. But what about other cases?)
 
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Kevin B. Smith
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Morro Bay
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Undefeated barriers do not deal you damage unless they (or some other card) says otherwise.

Undefeated banes that came from a location deck get shuffled back into that location deck unless they (or some other card, or the rulebook as in the case of a villain) says otherwise.

I highly recommend A Guide For New Players for rules clarifications, and the Rise of the Runelords Adventure Guide v1.68 to explain the story and characters.
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Robert O'Hearne
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Chelmsford
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Kevin's right on both counts.

Note however in RotR the barrier Ambush has been FAQ'd. It is always banished at the end of the encounter.

Ambush FAQ
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