Dealing with the whiff-factor in DnD

Played some DnD last night. It was good. I will talk about that more in a bit, but for now, an idea for combating the frustration of repeating missing in a fight.

The Angry Meter
If you miss, you get a token. A Big bowl of glass stones that you get to grab from when you miss — a nice tactile way of portraying building anger. Conceptually it transforms a miss from “a whiff” into “I didn’t hit you yet…but I’m getting closer”.
You can turn in five tokens on a future roll, after the roll has been made.
In Heroic Tier: they’re worth a +5
In Paragon Tier: +10
In Epic Tier: +15
That way, if you would miss anyway by spending tokens, you wouldn’t spend them and just rack up another for the pile.
Critical Fumbles give you two tokens, because 1’s make us really angry… alternately, if you want a fumble to suck more, you lose all your stones when you roll a 1.
You lose all your stockpiled tokens during an extended rest.

Kind of like it… but I’m not sure a game with so much “Marked enemy” stuff going on needs another token floating around the table.


  1. Actually — that’s a very clever idea. It’s a bit like the mechanism in CoX that makes sure hit at least once every three (five?) times (or something like that).
    I don’t know enough about the scaling — but I’d be inclined to make them all a high enough number to make sure you can almost certainly hit on that sixth try (or, alternately, make it a lower number). My thought being that many battles are done within 6 rounds — so you either want to make it a sure thing or else make it come into play sooner.
    One hit is unlikely to make the different in a battle — but it’s likely to make someone feel a lot better about it.
    (Hmmm. Do AoO trigger the Angry Meter? Prolly should.)
    Now, about a way to make those damage rolls better (I hate blowing all my this and that and other accuracy only to roll up 1s …)
    No, really, I think this idea has a lot going for it.

  2. You’re right: most fights won’t go super-long, but the stones can be stored up, so it’s possible what you’d see is someone taking the stones from one fight and unloading it in a shower of kick-ass during the next fight.

  3. I like this idea, and think it should be expanded to include a “double-stone” whenever a daily power misses. That’s the most frutrating thing of all in 4.0. I’ll give this a try in our next game and let you know.

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