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D&D 5E 5Eing Action Points, Drama Points, Fate Point, Hero Points, Etc.

Mark CMG

Creative Mountain Games
So what are folks various feelings and experiences with systems that include Action Points, Drama Points, Fate Points, Hero Points, etc. as part of the system, either core or optional, and how would you like to see them handled in 5E?


My solution? "Leveraging your Level." At each level a PC gets a number of points in a pool equal to their level that they can use during an Event to adjust a die roll or die rolls after the fact but they need to narratively explain how it manifests. It is meant to be encouraged by the GM and to add to the roleplaying and/or storytelling.

For example, if a PC misses a target number during an attack by one, the GM might suggest that they are close (or even say they missed by one) and ask if the player wishes to Leverage their Level, so the PC would add one to the die roll and, perhaps, simply explain that they are putting a little more muscle behind it. So, too, when a PC is picking a lock and misses the attempt by a couple of points, another player who (let's say) is second level could suggest that they accidently bump into the PC who is picking the lock and it happens to cause the attempt to be successful. A PC might throw a frying pan across a room to deflect the dagger thrust of a barroom brawler from skewing his comrade. Any number of creative justifications could be allowable depending on the imaginations of the players and GM, the GM also being encouraged to assist in suggesting ways it might be incorporated, like mentioning that there are frying pans nearby.

(An Event in this system is a nebulous leveling device that replaces XP and, depending on the druthers of the GM or group, could be a single encounter, a series of encounters, a player group goal, etc.)
 

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Li Shenron

Legend
Yours a nice idea actually.

But generally speaking I think AP and similar should really be optional, because usually they fall into two types:

(a) AP designed to be used for fairly minor benefits, such getting a bonus, a reroll, or an extra action. These are balanced benefits and hardly break the game, sometimes can save a PC from death, but they are most commonly used to avoid the effect of bad luck, and only once in a while they are used to create a cool "stunt". IMHO they don't significantly change the gaming experience and as such are unnecessary for most gaming groups, hence better be optional.

(b) AP designed to really allow to creatively bend the rules of the game every now and then, to help the players solve problems in unexpected ways (mostly because near-impossible without AP), typically with a "flashy" scene. This type of AP is usually rules-light and very subjective, so it's even less suitable to be a mandatory part of the game.
 


Ahnehnois

First Post
Mechanically, I think action points are a great opportunity to reduce lethality for PCs while allowing for a lower hp (or non-hp) "grittier" health system.

I also think they're a great opportunity to give Charisma a mechanical niche. Either their effects or their acquisition can be modified by Charisma. Fortune favors the bold, does it not?

I like systems that allow very free-form action point use; essentially the player asks for something and has a tangible resource (points that could be used to increase die rolls) to bargain with.

I dislike systems that do rerolls for action points or break basic laws of the game. An action point should be that little extra boost you get when you're desperate, not a reality-bending mulligan.

I don't know that action points should be built into the core system as in TB or d20 M, but they were good in UA and I'd like to see them presented in some form.

JRRNeiklot said:
I.m a "let the dice fall as they may" person, so I detest action points. The very notion of them makes me want to drown a kitten.
I agree with letting the dice fall as they may, but IMO those action point dice as an extra little boost is reasonable. If you think a world with action points can't be hardcore tough, you haven't seen my games. Then again, they're not really part of the core of D&D historically and I don't begrudge anyone who dislikes them.
 

Tallifer

Hero
I really like how action points work in the Fourth Edition. Just an extra action. Start with one each day, get more for each milestone. They are fun, but not brokenly powerful neither do they create arguments since they are precise and limited.
 

Mark CMG

Creative Mountain Games
I haven't seen any leaks regarding an action point mechanic in the basic playtests at DDXP yet. Anyone else?
 

BobTheNob

First Post
I dislike systems that do rerolls for action points or break basic laws of the game. An action point should be that little extra boost you get when you're desperate, not a reality-bending mulligan.
Funny That. Our group is finished 4e, and to tide us over till 5e is ready, Im currently putting together a game using the FATE system. If people dont know it, it uses "fate points" as a central mechanism to ALLOW players to alter the terms of the adventure. It encourages reality-bending, in fact, its totally structured around it.

But thats that game, not D&D. Its a whole different affair and I wonder at "Karma" resources (what I like to call them...that "Pool of luck") as a "tack on" to a static system such as D&D. It might be different if it was baked directly into the core, but for something like D&D, Im not overly fond.
 

I can see some version being an optional rule. I used hero points in my 3.5 campaigns (= auto success on a roll) and action points in 4E, and found that both worked well for my games. Your mileage may vary.
 

Mark CMG

Creative Mountain Games
Seems most people who want something like this think it should be optional. MAkes sense as that keeps DMs from feeling pressured into allowing it by default.
 

nedjer

Adventurer
So what are folks various feelings and experiences with systems that include Action Points, Drama Points, Fate Points, Hero Points, etc. as part of the system, either core or optional, and how would you like to see them handled in 5E?


My solution? "Leveraging your Level." At each level a PC gets a number of points in a pool equal to their level that they can use during an Event to adjust a die roll or die rolls after the fact but they need to narratively explain how it manifests. It is meant to be encouraged by the GM and to add to the roleplaying and/or storytelling.

For example, if a PC misses a target number during an attack by one, the GM might suggest that they are close (or even say they missed by one) and ask if the player wishes to Leverage their Level, so the PC would add one to the die roll and, perhaps, simply explain that they are putting a little more muscle behind it. So, too, when a PC is picking a lock and misses the attempt by a couple of points, another player who (let's say) is second level could suggest that they accidently bump into the PC who is picking the lock and it happens to cause the attempt to be successful. A PC might throw a frying pan across a room to deflect the dagger thrust of a barroom brawler from skewing his comrade. Any number of creative justifications could be allowable depending on the imaginations of the players and GM, the GM also being encouraged to assist in suggesting ways it might be incorporated, like mentioning that there are frying pans nearby.

(An Event in this system is a nebulous leveling device that replaces XP and, depending on the druthers of the GM or group, could be a single encounter, a series of encounters, a player group goal, etc.)

Stunt point instants :cool: Off to wonder how that could work for the opposition too. It's good to cut players some slack, but no need to go soft on them :devil:
 

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