RPGaDay 2018 Day Twenty

2 minute read Published:

I’m participating in the #RPGaDAY 2018 challenge, so August is going to be busy with posting. They’ve broken up the challenge into 5 themes, corresponding with the weeks. Week One focuses on the What, Week Two the How, Week Three is Describe, Week Four is Which, and Week Five brings it all home with Share. But for now let’s just settle in and focus on today’s question:

Day Twenty: Which Game Mechanic Inspires Your Play The Most?

I come now to sing the praises of the oft-maligned Hero Point. Or Action Point, or Fate Point, or whatever you want to call the Narrative Control Point in your game. Bennies from Savage Worlds, or Action Dice, if you’re playing Trailblazer, the best alternate ruleset for D&D 3.x games.

As a player, I like having the control, to change something, to reroll a failure or shoot for a higher success. I want to bend the game a little to my will when I’m putting everything on the line.

As a GM, I want my players to put everything on the line! They should be risking it all for greater rewards. But even beyond that, Hero Point mechanics allow me to be sloppy in game preparation. Was the combat too hard? Well, the players are in control of that, based on how or if they want to use their Hero Points. I could fiat the problem away, but maybe I’m the only one who sees a problem? If the players want to get a challenge over and done, they can always burn a Hero Point and be nearly certain of success.