Saturday, 9 January 2010

DW RPG: Points of Story

Most games now have some meta-mechanic for altering outcomes. Whether they are fate points, drama points, action points, poz or, as here, Story Points, they usually effect either the dice roll and/or the story.

Story Points are really powerful. They can be used before the roll to give extra dice. Be used after the roll to boost success (but only to the "Yes, but" level). They can temporarily give skills/traits (if plausible). Can power gadgets. And can also change the story.

I tended to use them, and use them often. We get 12 to start with, and can get more as the adventure goes on. Blair, playing a Time Lord with a sonic screwdriver, didn't have many, and usually used them as soon as he got them. Tim was more prudent and had plenty to spare.

The most common usage was dice boosts, either before or after. Once or twice I used them for story changes, but one has to be careful, and this is a point to be aware of. Story Points, if you have enough, can be too easy to use. In one adventure, we were nearing the end of a particular session, and weren't sure if we were going for another, and I posited that I could blow story points to get us free and clear, but it would be a let down. Fortunately, we did have another full session, so I didn't need to, but it did highlight the possibility.

In many ways they are too powerful. Our GM, Morgue, came up with the rule of dividing by three out of combat, so we would have started with 4 instead of 12, which is multiplied by 3 when we hit combat. Rounding was down, so if one point was spent in combat, then may as well blow two others as they would disappear anyway. This impacted me a bit as I was free and easy with them, but there are times when it really became, for me, important to spend a point to help me at that point.

Fortunately, I was also aware of when we should be given them, so I stayed just this side of empty. Definitely an option not mentioned in the GM book (that I saw) that might be considered if they are making things too easy, but it might just be easier to have less to begin with.


No comments: