(Full text of the PDQ rules can be found at: Atomic Sock Monkey)
The PDQ system offers three levels or scales of resolution for actions: simple, complicated, and conflict.
Usually, actions come with difficulties that correspond to the five Ranks for Qualities--Poor for trivial actions, Average for straightforward actions, Good for complex actions, Expert for intricate actions, and Master for actions of extreme difficulty.
Simple resolution is used for situations where the action has a clear-cut result, there's no ambiguity or complicating factors in the action, or randomness would bog down play. In simple resolution, you simply compare your rating in the Quality with the difficulty to perform the action--if your Quality is higher than the difficulty, you succeed. If it's not, you cannot perform the action. At the discretion of the judge or staffer, you have the option of turning any simple situation into a complicated one if you can't automatically succeed, thereby giving you the chance to avoid failure.
Complicated resolution is used in situations where comparisons of Rank are inconclusive or meaningless, there are complicating factors to performing the action, or randomness is desired. In this case, roll 2d6 using the +roll command and add the value of any relevant Qualities. To succeed, you must match or beat the difficulty number for the action.s difficulty rank--5 for Poor, 7 for Average, 9 for Good, 11 for Expert, and 13 for Master.
If you fail, it is likely that you will take Damage or Failure ranks as a consequence, which will be in effect for the rest of the scene.
Conflict resolution is used when there is active resistance by another force or person trying to prevent you from performing an action, or when you really want to "zoom in" on the action in a particular scene. The full conflict rules can only be used in judged scenes, and hence, only a summary of the rules is presented here. Instead of a single roll, all participants in a conflict take turns making opposed rolls, with the winners making progress toward their goals and inflicting Damage or Failure ranks on the losers.