Players can help each other if they're trained in the skill - doing so provides an asset to the player being helped. Does multiple skilled players helping stack?

Say three characters are trained in identifying Numenera. What's the outcome? Player attempting the task reduces its difficulty by 1 through skill, and either gets 1 or 2 assets. Is there "too many cooks in the kitchen" so only one asset applies?

This answer to "Is there guidance on applying overlapping skills to reduce difficulty?" shares great general philosophy on combining assets, but it's not entirely clear what's the best outcome in this case.


2 Answers 2


From a practical point of view, up to two characters can help

From the definition of assets, on numenera discovery, pag. 103

An asset usually eases a task by one step. Assets can never ease a task by more than two steps—any more than two steps from assets don’t count.

From the definition of helping, on numenera discovery, pag. 118 (enphasis mine)

If you use your action to help someone with a task, you ease the task. If you have an inability in a task, your help has no effect. If you use your action to help someone with a task that you are trained or specialized in, the task is eased by two steps

These are the only relevant rules. You may have as as many characters helping you as the situation allows (which means that the GM decides) but there is a limit on how much of that help really has any benefit, and that is either two untrained characters, or a single trained character.


To complement @MACN's answer, and help newer players who might feel powerless, do keep in mind that there are different ways to help. If another PC is directly helping you, that counts as asset; I'm not going to repeat the well-documented answer.

Other characters may also help by performing tasks that complements the task being attempted

This is also described on p. 118 of Numenera: Discovery. This is especially useful in cases where you cannot directly help the person performing the task (eg. sneaking) or the PC already is receiving as much help as they can use.

For instance if a member of your group is trying to pick a noble's pocket, you might help indirectly by attracting that person's attention in some way - insult them or make funny faces - and doing so eases the task being attempted. Since it eases the task, that does not count as an asset and thus is not restricted.

The downside, of course, is that you need to actually roll for your own task, which may fail or even result in a GM intrusion...


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