An Empty Throne
Action points give character the means to affect game play in significant ways, by improving important rolls or unlocking special abilities. Each character has a limited number of action points, and once an action point is spent, it is gone for good.
All character have an Action Point Pool capable holding of 3 action points +/- their Charisma Mod (with a minimum of 1). This Action Point Pool increases in size by one point every two character levels. During the course of a single session, a character’s AP point total may exceed his pool maximum but any excess is LOST between game sessions.
Acquiring Action Points
While every newly generated character initially enters the game with a number of action points equal to 3 + 1/2 of their current character level. A character’s current amount may be very different and rules for acquiring new AP points are restrictive, as follows:
Every morning, after a full 8 hours rest the character will regain 1 AP point to a maximum constrained by their level (AP points may regained in this fashion to maximum of the character’s level divided by five. [Max AP regained by sleep: (Character Level / 5) +1].
Every time a character advances, he automatically gains 1/2 his new character level in Action points. All other AP points are acquired during game play and may be awarded for player actions and activities which advance game atmosphere, character credibility, team building, plot hook motivation, display heroic behavior or fulfill GM game standards.
Using Action Points
You can spend 1 action point either to add to a skill roll, an attack roll, a saving throw, or statistic check, to take a special action, or to improve the use of a feat. You can spend 1 action point in a round (constrained by level ). If you are of sufficent level to spend more than one point in a round, you may not spend another point in the same round to gain advantage of the same type in the same round.
Depending on character level, a character might be able to roll more than one die when he spends 1 action point. If so, apply the highest result and disregard the other rolls. A 15th-level character, for instance, gets to roll 3d6+3 and take the best result of the three. So, if he rolled a 1, 2, and 4, he would apply the 4(+3=7) to his d20 roll.
When you spend 1 action point to improve a d20 roll, you add the result of this die to your d20 roll (including attack rolls, saves, checks, or any other roll of a d20) to help you meet or exceed the target number.
The expenditure of 1 action point may alter a d20 roll after the roll is made, but only before the GM reveals the result of that roll.
The expenditure of 2 action point may alter a d20 roll after the roll is made, and after the GM reveals the success of that roll.
You can’t use an action point to alter the result of a roll where take 10 or take 20 rules are used.
A character can perform certain tasks by spending an action point.
Activate Class Ability
A character can spend 1 action point to gain another use of a class ability that has a limited number of uses per day. For example, a monk might spend an action point to gain another use of her stunning fist ability, or a paladin might spend an action point to make an additional smite attack.
Although the character may use another single point in the next round to gain this effect again, this use of a single point is limited to twice per day at this cost level. if the character wishes to utilize another 2 usages (in the 3 and 4th round), he must spend an incremental amount for each time he wishes to use the special action before resting. [ie. 2 AP for each of the next 2 usages, 3 AP for each of the following 2 usages, etc.]
A character can spend 1 action point as a free action when fighting defensively. This gives him double the normal benefits for fighting defensively for the entire round (+4 dodge bonus to AC; +6 if he has 5 or more ranks in Tumble).
At the beginning of a character’s turn, he may spend 1 action point as a free action to gain the benefit of a feat he doesn’t have. He must meet the prerequisites of the feat. He gains the benefit until the beginning of his next turn.
During any round in which a character takes a full attack action, he may spend 1 action point to make an extra attack at his highest base attack bonus. Action points may be used in this way with both melee and ranged attacks.
A character can spend 1 action point as a free action to increase the effective caster level of one of his spells by 2. He must decide whether or not to spend an action point in this manner before casting the spell.
Spellcasters who prepare their spells in advance can spend 1 action point to recall any spell just cast. The spell can be cast again later with no effect on other prepared spells. This use of an action point is a free action and can only be done in the same round that the spell is cast. Spontaneous spellcasters such as sorcerers and bards can spend 1 action point to cast a spell without using one of their daily spell slots. This use of an action point is a free action and can only be done as the spell is being cast.
Any time a character is dying, he can spend 1 action point to become stable at his current hit point total.
The use of action points opens up a whole range of possible feats. However, it’s easier on characters simply to improve existing feats to take advantage of action points—that way, characters needn’t spend their precious feat slots simply to gain the ability to use their action points. Below are a few examples of how action points can be used with existing feats. Unless otherwise stated, each effect requires a free action to activate and lasts 1 round.
You can spend 1 action point to negate your miss chance for a single attack.
You can spend 1 action point to double the bonus to Armor Class granted by the feat.
You can spend 1 action point to increase the dodge bonus granted by the feat to +2. The effect lasts for the entire encounter.
You can spend 1 action point to double the bonus on initiative checks granted by the feat, from +4 to +8.
You can spend 1 action point to add the effect of any one metamagic feat that you have to a spell you are casting. The spell is cast at its normal level (without any level adjustment because of the feat) and takes no extra time to cast.
Heighten Spell automatically raises a spell’s effective level to the highest level of spell you are capable of casting. For example, if a 7th-level wizard with the Heighten Spell feat casts burning hands and spends 1 action point to heighten the spell, the spell is treated as if it were a 4th-level spell in all respects even though the wizard prepared it normally (as a 1st-level spell).
You can spend 1 action point to double the bonus on damage rolls granted by the feat.
You can spend 1 action point to double the increase to save DCs granted by the feat, from +1 to +2.
You can spend 1 action point to double the bonus on caster level checks granted by the feat, from +2 to +4. The effect lasts for the entire encounter.