Drama Traits and Drama Tokens

Heroes have three Drama Traits to go with their Hero Traits.  Drama Traits work differently than Hero Traits.  While they also represent aspects of your character, these traits represent aspects that would make your Hero’s life MORE complicated and harder if they are introduced to the story.

Here are some examples of Drama Traits in three rough categories.  These are only examples, and (like Hero Traits) you are encouraged to come up with your own.  If you choose to roll your randomly, remember that these traits describe who your character is at his or her heart!  Selecting these randomly can be fun, but make sure you end up with a set of traits for a character you will enjoy playing.

Dark-sides (Choose or roll 1d10, or define your own)

  1. Pessimistic
  2. Prideful
  3. Careless
  4. Distant
  5. Suspicious
  6. Disrespectful
  7. Angry
  8. Impatient
  9. Vengeful
  10. Egotistical

Secrets (Choose or roll 1d10, or define your own)

  1. A Home with Family, Friends and/or a Pet
  2. A School or Workplace
  3. A Rival (in or out of costume)
  4. A Prized Possession
  5. Connection to an Institution (like a Church, or a Government)
  6. A Romantic Interest
  7. A Past Failure or Crime
  8. A Personal Problem
  9. An Enemy
  10. A Debt You Owe to Someone (or Something)

Limitations (Choose or roll 1d10, or define your own)

  1. Blind or Deaf*
  2. Physical Disability*
  3. Communication Difficulties (unable to speak or write, not fluent w/ local language)
  4. Physical / Biological Requirement (a’la an addiction, or needing water to breathe)
  5. Emotional / Spiritual Requirement (prayer at dawn, or Linus’ blanket)
  6. Unlikely physical weakness (kryptonite, light from a red star, etc.)
  7. Unlikely emotional triggers (phobias, or strong ethical codes)
  8. An Obsession
  9. An Object that you need in order to be a Hero.
  10. A Time, place or other situation that limits your character.

There should be an easily accessed pile of Drama Tokens in the play area for all the players to use.  Players can give the GM a Drama Token anytime they feel their Hero really needs to try his or her best to accomplish something.  When they do, they tell the GM which of their Drama Traits they are spending against – this gives the GM permission to make that Drama Trait an important part of this (or some up-coming story).

GMs can also spend the Drama Tokens to make the current adventure harder in some way.  Or, if the GM has collected enough Drama Tokens, he or she can spend them to end the scene in favor of the villains.

Note that you can give the GM a Drama Token almost anytime you like.  You are not limited to only a certain number of Drama Tokens per scene or per game.  However, think carefully about this, because each Drama Token can be used against you!

 Give the GM a Drama Token (and tell him which Drama Trait you’re using) to:

  1. Re-roll the lowest die AND add +1 die to your roll, OR
  2. Multiply your Movement by 2 for one Action. (Another form of ‘Dash’)

The only time you are NOT allowed to use a Drama Trait to make a challenge easier is when the GM has already used a Drama Token to make the challenge harder.  Similarly, the GM may not use a Drama Token to make a challenge harder if a player has already used one to make a challenge easier.

Drama Traits are a variation of the Plot Points mechanic found in other RPGs.  It gives you, the player, a way of influencing the story in collaboration with your GM.  As you invoke your Drama Traits to give the GM Drama Tokens, you are telling the GM to use your Hero’s background as fodder for future character-centered complications or future stories.

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