The Nova class has a flare entitled "boost" (bold added for emphasis):

Spend 1 burn to supercharge a teammate’s efforts with your powers, giving them a +1 bonus to their roll as if you had spent Team from the pool.

Now, I know that the rules for using Team state (Masks, p. 82):

each teammate can only spend one Team out of the pool for any single roll

But I'm not clear whether the "as if you had spent Team" part of the Boost flare means that you are restricted from spending an actual Team on the same roll.

So if a Nova has already spent a blaze to add a +1 to a teammate's roll with Boost, could that Nova also spend a Team to add an additional +1 to that same roll?


1 Answer 1


No. That's why it says "as if you spent team".

There's plenty of verbiage available to a PbtA game to indicate other kinds of boosts - you can see other playbooks using +1 forward and +1 ongoing to describe many kinds of bonuses. If the Nova was intended to provide a bonus to another hero's roll, completely separate from the team pool, it wouldn't even need to have mentioned the team pool in the first place.

"As if you spent Team" means the limitations of the Team pool apply. The Nova can spend a Burn with the Boost flare, or spend from the pool, but either way that's their contribution, and you'll need allied NPCs or other heroes to boost the roll further.

So the Nova can't:

  • spend all the Team out of the pool by themselves, but you already knew that
  • dump all their Burn boosting an ally's roll
  • spend a Team and then a Burn
  • spend a Burn and then a Team

because spending Burn on this flare is like spending Team. Except it doesn't require any teamwork or a tough choice on a roll to Protect Someone, it's just the Burn the Nova gets all the time to do anything.

If you really need a second point, there is literally nobody else around to help, and there's Team in the pool, the hero you just spent Burn on will probably be able to spend Team to act selfishly and shift their own Labels. There's all kinds of potential to act selfishly after someone just helped you.

If you really need a third point, maybe just take the L.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ Note that this answer has really weird consequences, because it now matters what order the things happen in, because if you spend a team first and then use the nova ability you'd get both. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 5, 2020 at 22:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Pleasestopbeingevil : No, you'd be spending a burn to do nothing, because you already spent team. \$\endgroup\$
    – Glazius
    Jan 5, 2020 at 23:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Could you maybe explain in your answer why order doesn't matter? It seems like it might be reasonable to assume it did. \$\endgroup\$ Jan 6, 2020 at 5:14

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