Influence is a resource for players to affect the story, shining the spotlight on a character or other element of the story.
Each player has a small amount of Influence, which can be spent and refreshed throughout each game session. This scarce resouce ensures every player has the same chances to showcase their character and their ideas for the story.
Dice are used to track player Influence. Each player has a small number of Influence Dice. Players use Influence Dice to (1) Ready Abilities (2) Burn Dice to help succeed on Checks or (3) affect the story itself. When an Influence Die is played the player sets it aside and cannot play it again until it has been Refreshed.
Influence Dice are “gamer” dice
Each player needs one set of “classic gamer” polyhedral dice, which consists of seven dice, one each of the sizes d4, d6, d8, d10, d10/0, d12, and d20.
Players start each game session with only limited Influence, the lower four the dice (d4, d6, d8, and d10). The other three dice (d10/0, d12, and d12) might be gained during play during “Refresh” (see below). As a limited resource, Influence Dice are an important part of game play and player strategy.
Players may attempt an Infuence “Refresh” many times during the game. This is usually done (1) when the characters take time to rest and (2) when a player deliberately showcases a character Instinct.
A player attempts a Refresh by rolling each spent Influence Dice, and regaining the dice that roll failures. For example, a player who had played his d8 and d10 would roll them, and each die that rolled a failure would become playable again.
An “Instinct” is something a PC would automatically do based on his or her character concept. Every PC has personality aspects thst are outside rational control, and triggers that provoke instinctual or compulsive reactions. Some instincts are a result of training, while others are genetic, and some are ingrained habits or addictions.
A player who forces an dramatically undesirable character action based on a PC “Instinct” should be eligible for a Refresh. Alternatively, the player might describe a compulsive mental state that propels the story forward.
A compulsion can be based on a Theme, but ideally comes from a Signature. For example, a character who has a Signature containing “truthful” or “socially inept” might tell a powerful lord the full blatant truth rather than hide details that anyone with common sense would keep to himself. Any player or the GM can suggest a compulsion, although the player can decide whether or not to go along with it. This makes makes characters seem more lifelike.
Influence Dice that are currently being used by an active Ability cannot be refreshed.
Also, the GM can restrict or limit refreshes if the character is unable to rest, suffering from starvation, etc
Refresh as a Reward
The GM may also give a player an Influence Refresh as a reward for in-game accomplishments, such as defeating a major villain, recovering a quest object, or other points of progress in the Story. For example, if a character who activated an ancient spacer relic might be granted an Influence Refresh as psychic power washed over him.