Modifying Abilities on the Fly

Sometimes, a player can use a special ability in a way that goes beyond its normal bounds. Such changes can be done on the fly. In some cases, it simply costs more points to use the ability in a new way. In other cases, more challenges are involved.

For any Intellect ability with a specific range, you can increase the range by using more mental energy. If you spend 1 additional Intellect point, you can change the range by one step—either from short to long, or from long to 500 feet (152 m). You can’t increase a range beyond 500 feet by spending more points.

Any Intellect ability that has a duration (anything more than a single action in a single round) usually lasts one minute, ten minutes, or one hour. By spending 1 additional point of Intellect, you can increase the duration by one step, so an ability that lasts one minute can be made to last ten minutes. Durations cannot be increased more than one step.

A player can make a special roll to modify the range, area, or other aspects of an ability. The roll is always modified *by the *stat it’s normally based on. The GM sets the difficulty for the roll based on the degree of modification. Like any roll, the player can use *Effort, skill, and assets *to reduce the difficulty. Generally, the difficulty falls into one of three categories:


(modifying an ability to accomplish an effect that has nothing to do with its description or intent) Difficulty 10


(modifying an ability to do something similar to the description or intent, but changing its nature) Difficulty 7


(modifying an ability to do something within the spirit and general idea of the ability) Difficulty 4

For example, say an adept has the Hover ability and wants to modify its use in the middle of an encounter.

  • If he wanted to use it to blast someone with fire, that’s an impossible task (difficulty 10) because fire has nothing to do with the ability.
  • If he wanted to use it offensively within the general description of the ability, he might try to make a foe fly up and hit its head on the ceiling. However, turning an ability that is not offensive into an attack changes its nature, making the task formidable (difficulty 7).
  • If he wanted to use it to make a friend hover rather than himself, that’s within the spirit and general idea of the ability. That’s difficult (difficulty 4) but not unreasonable.

Trading Damage for Effect

Damage Reduction/Effect

1 – Hinder/Distract
2 – Specific body part
3 – Knockback
3 – Move Past
4 – Strike Held Object
5 – Knockdown
6 – Disarm
7 – Impair
8 – Stun

Player Nominations for Bonus XP

Usually, players earn experience points by making discoveries or through GM awards. As an alternative to that system, players can suggest that other players earn XP. The GM calls for nominations at the end of an adventure, and the players discuss who did what, who came up with the best ideas, who handled a particular situation well, and so forth. Every character still receives XP, but the players decide who gets how much


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