Crisis Mode Turn Sequence
WARNING: Outdated Rules
The rules in this section have become obsolete following the recent rules overhaul. The most current version of the rules are those included in the Core Rules section of this website.
Once all characters are placed on the board, all character cards are prepped for play, and Action Points are set for all characters, the first turn of Crisis Mode begins. Each turn in Crisis Mode has two phases: an Action Phase, made up of several Rounds in which characters move, attack, defend, or take other actions; and a Reset Phase, in which players resolve end-of-turn game business, and get set up for the next turn.
Each turn in Crisis Mode represents a handful of seconds—somewhere between 10 and 30 seconds, to be not-very-precise. All of that time is taken up by the Action Phase, when the characters’ actions are carried out on the board. The Reset Phase is strictly a bookkeeping step for the players; it takes no time in the world of heroes and their opponents.
Action Phase and Rounds
Each Action Phase comprises one or more Rounds. In each Round, a character may take his Free Steps, if he hasn’t already, and take one Action, assuming he has any Action Points left to spend. Once every character who is able to take an action has had the opportunity to do so, the Round ends. If any characters have Action Points (AP) remaining, a new Round begins, and all characters who still have AP get another opportunity to perform a single action.
Order of Action
Within each Round, characters act in order of their current Action Points, from highest to lowest. Thus, the order of action can change from one Round to the next, as various characters take different actions costing different amounts of AP. If two characters have the same number of AP in a given round, and the order in which they act matters—as it would if they were attacking each other, for instance—the character with the higher Finesse acts first. If both characters have the same number of AP and the same Finesse, have them roll their Finesse Check Dice, with the higher roll acting first.
Passing an Action
Characters are not required to act just because they have AP left to spend. They may pass their chance to act in the current Round, saving their AP for use in future Rounds. They may not, however, defer their action until later in the current Round—each character gets one opportunity to act each Round, take it or leave it.
The risk in passing up your action in a Round is that if every character who has AP remaining passes in the same round, the current Action Phase ends immediately. See the next section, “Ending the Action Phase,” for full details.
Ending the Action Phase
An Action Phase usually ends when all characters have spent all their Action Points for the turn. Once all characters have spent all their AP, there is nothing left they can do. The Action Phase is complete, and the Reset Phase commences.
The other way an Action Phase can end is if every character who still has unspent AP passes their chance to act in the same Round. Essentially, if everyone who can still act pauses at once, it gives all characters, including those who had spent all their AP, a chance to regain their footing and act again.
Once the Action Phase ends, no more Rounds are played in the current turn, and play proceeds directly to the Reset Phase. All characters with AP or Free Steps left over from the Action Phase that has just ended forfeit them when AP and Free Steps are reset; neither AP nor Free Steps may be carried over from one turn to the next.
There is no theoretical limit to the number of Rounds in a single Action Phase, though it’s rare to see a single Action Phase run more than five Rounds. Most Action Phases consist of two or three Rounds. That said, new Rounds are played in the current Action Phase until every character on the board has spent all their AP, or until every character with remaining AP has passed their opportunity to act in the same round. It’s possible for one or two characters with a lot of AP to drag an Action Phase out for many Rounds, by taking a lot of passes and single-AP actions, but there’s rarely any strategic reason to do so.
During the Reset Phase, players make any necessary adjustments to their characters’ current Stats, which are tracked by counters on their character cards. Depending on the actions the characters have chosen during the turn, special abilities they possess, or magical items they’re using, players may need to adjust Hit Points or Mana Points, or even Modify their Stats. They will also need to reset their Free Steps and roll for new Action Points.
A full breakdown of the business that needs to be attended to during the Reset Phase will be found in the Reset Phase section of these rules.