Pathfinder 2E Variant rules for more Hero Point usage


Something I've noticed in play is that my players feel constrained when it comes to spending rechargeable resources like Hero Points and Focus Points. I want to incentivize them to be more experimental, aggressive and risk taking, so I had some variant rules I wanted some opinions on before I use them;

  • Once a turn, critically succeeding at a check that uses your Key Ability Bonus in the Encounter Phase that did not benefit from a Fortune effect grants 1 Hero Point.
    • This rewards actions taken intuitively by each character and further encourages using key ability tied skills in combat, especially those that don't see play often like Intelligence/Wisdom based Recall Knowledge checks.
    • Preventing Fortune Effects from giving Hero Points this way discourages cheap spending of Hero Points to fish for crits on successes or with massive accuracy boosters like true strike.
    • Once a turn limit prevents cheese strategies to fish for Hero Points to an obnoxious extent.
  • A new 3rd level General Feat that allows a character to cast a focus spell using a Hero Point instead as a free action once a turn if their focus point pool is empty and they have not cast a Focus Spell this turn. Requires having a Focus Point Pool as a prerequisite.
    • Feat taxed so that every character does not feel obligated to get a Focus Point pool to be optimized; only characters that heavily rely on their focus point pool should consider this.
    • Allows more aggressive use of Focus Spells so they see more play.
    • Once per turn limit as a safety measure against potential cheese strategies.
  • A new 3rd level General Feat that allows a character to gain a Hero Point when they critically succeed with one chosen Saving Throw, Skill, or Perception in the Encounter Phase as long as they were not benefiting from a Fortune Effect.
    • Allows an aspect of the character that is powerful or iconic to gain Hero Points even if it isn't tied to their key ability score, such as Perception for Rangers or Investigators, a high save for a defensive character like a Champion or Monk, or Deception for Rogues or Swashbucklers.
    • Tied to a feat since it is supposed to be roughly on par in power with Canny Acumen and to entice thought as to which save or skill is most iconic to the character and most used.
The overall goal is to make characters a little stronger without majorly breaking balance and to encourage viewing more of a character's kit as valid for encounters. Hero Points granted by story advancements are intended to stay the same. What are your guy's thoughts?

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