8
\$\begingroup\$

I just found out about the shaken errata that our Game Master did not knew about and we didn't use. Our GM is kinda strict; if it is not in the rules, it basically does not work. Under the Shaken condition a character can move and make free actions - but I wasn't able to figure out which actions are actually free ones, by the rules. What I'm interested in is:

  • Which actions are free? Either list, or better rules that allows to distinguish without a doubt.
  • Where this rule can be found, when I'll bring that up? Book, chapter?

If it is there and I'm just missing a chapter from the rulebook, I'm sorry. I only have unlimited access to Polish rulebook, probably outdated. I have read English Savage Worlds Deluxe: Explorer's Edition, but it was not my copy and whilst I can get a peek, I can't borrow it to re-read it all over again now.

\$\endgroup\$
9
\$\begingroup\$

The main definition and list can be found in the section on Actions.

Free Actions: Some minor actions are “free” and don’t inflict multi-action penalties. Speaking a short sentence or two, moving up to the character’s Pace, falling prone, resisting opposed rolls, or dropping an item are all examples of free actions.

Page 66 of Savage Worlds Deluxe (pdf copy)

Other free actions include:

  • Maintaining powers (Using Powers, page 103)
  • Aspects of certain Powers and Edges, e.g. Soul Drain, Quick Draw, Speed
  • Switching Firing Mode on a gun (page 72)
  • Driving without attempting a maneuvre (page 98)

This list is not meant to be complete, as the rules cannot hope to cover all situations that might come up in a game. The expectation when an unclear situation comes up is that the GM will compare what the PC is doing to the examples in the book, and make a judgement.

As per VahallaGH's excellent comment, free actions are still limited by the "you can't repeat an action" rule. So moving Pace may be a free action, but you can't repeat that action without some special ability or other cost.

Another situation that can come up is when a player attempts a sequence that includes actions that would individually be counted as free. It can get to the point where the player is trying to cram so many free actions into a single turn of combat, that the GM has to make a call. Again, in these circumstances, the actual call is left up to the GM, and may depend on a variety of aspects. For example, I'd probably allow more flexibility in a pulpy pirates game than I would in a gritty, post-apocalyptic zombie campaign.

\$\endgroup\$
  • \$\begingroup\$ Worth remembering that free actions are still limited by the "you can't repeat an action" rule. So moving Pace may be a free action, but you can't repeat that action without some special ability or other cost. \$\endgroup\$ – ValhallaGH Feb 18 '18 at 14:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ @ValhallaGH an excellent point, which I've incorporated into my answer if that's OK with you \$\endgroup\$ – Wibbs Feb 18 '18 at 21:28
4
\$\begingroup\$

Free actions are mentioned under "Actions" on page 60 of my copy of Savage Worlds rules and described like this:

Some minor actions are "free" and don't inflict multi-action penalties. Speaking a short sentence or two, moving up to the character's Pace, falling prone, resisting opposed rolls, or dropping an item, are all examples of free actions.

Note that "free action" doesn't necessarily mean unlimited use: even if moving up to the character's Pace is a free action, doing that again to get more movement is not.

Unfortunately, the list in the book is not comprehensive. Some other examples of free actions are sprinkled here and there: eg. the Speed power (page 85) makes running a free action, and maintaining a power (page 75) is stated to be a free action. If, as a GM, one has to make a snap judgment on whether a given action is free, I would recommend weighing the usefulness of the action against a normal non-free action and deciding based on that.

\$\endgroup\$
  • \$\begingroup\$ +1, but could you add some advice for a player to figure out what he will be able to do, without too much discussion during fight? \$\endgroup\$ – Mołot Feb 7 '18 at 13:08
  • 2
    \$\begingroup\$ @Mołot Unfortunately, I feel there's little I can do in that respect. With the rules being as slim as they are, it'll depend far too much on your GM's whim to know for sure. \$\endgroup\$ – kviiri Feb 7 '18 at 13:13

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.