There are moments in any struggle that influence the outcome. Does the brave warrior lay low the villain before he can finish casting a devastating spell? Does the sly rogue avoid detection as she sneaks into the giant chieftain’s lair? Does the pious cleric finish casting her healing spell before the rain of arrows ends the life of her companions? Just a few die rolls decide each of these critical moments, and while failure is always a possibility, true heroes find a way to succeed, despite the odds. Hero Points represent this potential for greatness.
Each Hero Point gives a character the chance to succeed even when the dice turn against them. Hero Points allow the party to “edit” the story by making things happen that are not normally supposed to happen. Hero Points can be spent at any time and do not require an action to use (although the actions they modify consume part of your character’s turn as normal). You cannot spend more than one (1) Hero Point during a single round of combat. Characters can have no more than three (3) Hero Points at any one time. Excess Hero Points are lost. Whenever a Hero Point is spent, it can have any one of a number of effects.
Using Hero Points
Act Out of Turn
You can spend a Hero Point to take your turn immediately. Treat this as a readied action, moving your initiative to just before the currently acting creature. You may only take a move or a standard action on this turn.
You gain a positive Luck Bonus to a skill, attack or saving throw as follows:
Used by your character before a roll is made: +8
Used by your character after a roll is made: +4
Used by another character before the roll was made: +4
Used by another character after a roll is made: +2
In order to use a Hero Point on another character, you must be in line of sight to that character. You may use Hero Point on animal companions, familiars and eidolons as though you were using them on yourself.
A character can spend two (2) Hero Points to cheat death. How this plays out is up to the GM, but generally the character is left alive, falls prone, and has d10-1 negative hit points but stable (a roll of 1 means the character is on 0 hit points). For example, a character is about to be slain by a critical hit from an arrow. If the character spends two (2) Hero Points, the GM decides that the arrow pierced the character’s holy symbol, reducing the damage enough to prevent him from being killed, and that he made his stabilization roll at the end of his turn. Cheating death is the only way for a character to spend more than one (1) Hero Point in a turn. The character can spend Hero Points in this way to prevent the death of a familiar, animal companion, eidolon, or special mount, but not another character or NPC.
You can spend a Hero Point on your turn to gain an additional standard or move action this turn.
If you feel stuck at one point in the adventure, you can spend a Hero Point and petition the GM for a hint about what to do next. If the GM feels that there is no information to be gained, the Hero Point is not spent.
“Just Dumb Luck”
Perhaps you really need a vine to be hanging when you started to fall to your death? Or perhaps that chandelier needs to be strong enough to hold your weight while you swing across the room to attack the enemy? Then this is where a Hero Point can be spent. You can petition the GM to allow a Hero Point to be used to attempt nearly anything that would normally be improbable or event impossible. Such uses are not guaranteed to be successful and should be considered carefully by the GM. No additional Hero Points may be spent on such an attempt, either by the character or her allies.
You can spend a Hero Point to recall a spell you have already cast or to gain another use of a special ability that is otherwise limited. This should only be used on spells and abilities possessed by your character that recharge on a daily basis.
You may spend a Hero Point to re-roll any one d20 roll you just made. You must take the results of the second roll, even if it is worse.
Earning Hero Points
Completing Plot Arcs: Earn a Hero Point for completing a major chapter or arc in the campaign story.
Faith: Earn a Hero Point for showing true devotion to your character’s faith by upholding the tenets of your faith in a grand way. Such Hero Points might be temporary, and if not spent on the task at hand, they fade away.
Heroic Acts: Earn a Hero Point for performing an exceptionally heroic act. This might include anything from slaying an evil dragon when the rest of the group has fled to rescuing townsfolk from a burning building despite being terribly wounded. It does not have to be related to combat. Convincing the reticent king to send troops to help with a bandit problem or successfully jumping a wide chasm might earn a character a Hero Point, depending on the circumstances. Note that a Hero Point should only be awarded if the PC involved did not spend a Hero Point to accomplish the task.