Monday, May 18, 2015

Inspiration alternative [5e]

I've noticed that my players tend to forget about Inspiration. As a player I often only used it as a last resort sort of rolling mechanic. As a GM I forget to dispense so I tend to just say "Everybody gets Inspiration" which kind of screws anybody who hasn't spent theirs, since you either have it or you don't. I've seen some other people tweak Inspiration in different ways and I've decided to take some... uh, inspiration from this and make my own tweaks.
Inspiration is carried by the player and can be transferred from character to character. If one character falls, another may be inspired to rise up. Characters start with no Inspiration whatsoever. Inspiration can only be earned by playing.

Gaining Inspiration
Whenever you play out one of your character's personality traits, follow your character's ideal, or give in to one of your characters drawbacks or bonds, you gain +1 Inspiration. If you do this to your character's detriment, you gain +2 Inspiration. If you do this and it gets your character killed, you gain +3 Inspiration. Your character can never have more Inspiration than their current level. Excess Inspiration is automatically lost.
For example, Bob is playing Robin, a 7th-level Fighter with the Noble background. Robin has the Bond "My loyalty to my sovereign is unwavering." Robin overhears mercenaries who work for Robin's sovereign plotting to desert from their posts before a battle. If Bob intervenes or confronts the mercenaries he could gain 1 Inspiration, if it causes him to lose an ally or suffer greatly he could gain 2 Inspiration, and if Robin gets killed confronting them Bob gains 3 Inspiration. If Bob waits to report the mercenaries to a commanding officer then he gains no Inspiration, he didn't handle them himself.

Using Inspiration
One point of Inspiration can give you advantage or take away disadvantage on a single d20 roll.
Three points of Inspiration can turn one of your unsuccessful d20 rolls into a successful rolls.

Losing Inspiration
When your character dies you roll up a new character at 1st-level and lose all of your Inspiration. Each point of Inspiration you have raises the starting level of your new character by +1. If you were holding onto a maximum amount of Inspiration then your new character would start at the same level as your old character.
For example, Charlie has 5 Inspiration and is playing Tytus, an 8th-level Cleric. When Tytus dies, Charlie rolls up a Rogue, Marigold, and she starts at 6th-level.

1 comment:

  1. I really like the three point Inspiration rule: I'll use it in my game.

    I allow Inspiration to stack freely, award it fairly liberally, and award it for ooc activities like making the game more fun by being really funny, bringing food, or tracking initiative.

    I was worried at first because one player was hoarding it: getting up to 8 Inspiration I think. But during one really hard encounter he was generous with it and saved multiple members of the party with it. So it ended up being fun.

    I really like the 3 Inspiration=success rule. I think one time the players pooled like 4 Inspiration into one check, and it still failed (I allow them to apply Inspiration after the die was rolled). That was kind of a bummer as they burned through all their Inspiration with nothing to show for it.

    So thanks!


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