View Full Version : 4th Ed - theory/brainstorming healing surge\power point

2011-08-16, 06:26 PM
Hello and thank you for your time. For a while now, I've been working on a project for a homebrew system that would merge features I like from 4th Edition D&D and the new Gamma World for a campaign set in a low-level superheroic / "video fighting game" type world. Another way of describing it might be a Naruto-esque world (NOT a conversion) without some of the "hax" powers like tailed beasts / eye powers / etc. I'll be using some Naruto terms for simplicity's sake -- again, this is NOT intended as a conversion.

One of the decisions I made was to adapt the psionic power points from 4th Edition D&D psionic classes as a resource instead of encounter/daily powers. Under the current setup, players will start with a 2 in their "primary" score and a 1 in 3 other scores (5 chakra points) and end up with at least 12 total chakra points (17 as a max, by spending 5 of the 8 feats players will get). As the result of some other rules that would just clutter this post, players will most likely end in one of the following configurations.

Specialist: 5/3/2/2, up to 7/4/3/3
Twin: 4/4/2/2, up to 6/5/3/3
Spread: 3/3/3/3, up to 5/4/4/4

The extra chakra comes from 5 feats, 4 of which are the prereqs for the fifth. The first four feats adds 1 chakra to a particular category. The final feat adds a 2nd point to the primary score. Characters get a feat every odd numbered level; this includes the 1st level feat.

These chakra points are spent to enhance basic attacks in much the way it works for the at-will powers of the argent, telepath, and battlemind classes in 4th Edition D&D. At lower levels (1-5) this generally costs 1-2 chakra points; some of the higher level abilities (15th level is currently the maximum level I'm working with) powers might require spending 4 or even 6 chakra to use at full power. Spent chakra is restored after a short rest (the end of the encounter).

In addition to spending these chakra points, it is also possible to expend/"burn out" a chakra point such that it isn't restored until a full rest. This is intended for big, show-stopping powers / to replicate the concept of dailies.


One of the things I've come to the conclusion in my 4th Edition campaign (which is winding down, for the record) is that characters have too many healing surges. My current plan is to cut this somewhat so that most players had 4+Con Mod surges and could get up to 6+Con Mod surges based on certain choices. Most players will get 4 HP per level, up to 6. Similarly, I'm borrowing from Gamma World that there are greatly reduced ways of spending healing surges in combat (there is no equivalent of Healing Word, for example, and most combat healing takes the form of temp HP).

This is where y'all come in. An interesting idea was suggested by one of the players that I've been toying with and wanted some external opinions on.

Briefly stated - instead of having a separate healing surge score, how would it work if you burnt out chakra instead?

At lower levels, this works. You've got a grand total of 5 chakra (possibly more depending on feat usage). Burning out a chakra will be *felt*.

At higher levels, especially with players like mine? It quickly becomes a problem. I can see my players being hesitant to use their chakra for power use because it would mean less healing available, even with players essentially restricted to using Second Wind.

As such, I'm thinking it burns out 1 chakra during heroic levels (1-5), 2 chakra during paragon levels (6-10), and 3 chakra during epic levels (11-15). It might also be worthwhile to go back to characters getting new chakra points every 3rd level instead of every even-numbered level. I moved to the even-numbered level system because I felt every 3rd level didn't give enough variety.

The other problem I foresee is that this might greatly enhance the viability of the five "extra chakra" feats. I've had to rebalance these a few times as it is.