Partial Point Buy

After deftly picking the lock on the outer gate, Janson convinces a guard that he is delivering bread to the master of the house. He searches for and finds the secret entrance to the dungeon where he knows the owner is keeping a manticore as a pet. He slips in, unseen and unheard. He spots the manticore. He rushes toward his prey, knowing that no attack could cause serious harm to his burly form. He beheads the manticore with one strong swing of his greataxe. The other three members of his party watch, wishing they could help, but knowing they are not strong enough, fast enough, or charismatic enough to actually be usefull when compared to Janson.

Determining Stats

We have all had games where one player rolls stats that are significantly higher than everyone else's, breaking the game balance and ruining everyone's experience. The point buy system avoids this by giving players a certain number of points with which to buy their stats. But that leads to very homogenous characters since it is usually best to choose a 15, 15, 15, 8, 8, 8 point spread or something close to it. This lead me to create the partial point buy (PPB) system.

How It Works

First you roll 4 stats using the standard 4d6 drop the lowest method. Then you add these up and subtract the sum from 74. You then distribute the result among the 2 remaining stats, with the condition that neither of these stats may be higher than 16 or lower than 6. If your rolls are such that this condition can not be met, scrap everything and start over.

For Example

Say you roll 18, 7, 15, 14 for your first four stats
74 - 54 = 20
You then distribite those 20 as 14-6, 13-7, 12-8, 11-9, or 10-10.


The average 4d6 drop the lowest roll is 12.24. This times 6 is 73.44. I rounded up to get 74 as the sum of all your stats using this method. I chose to restrict the last 2 stats to be between 6 and 16 because this system is somewhere between the point buy system (where the stats are between 8 and 15) and the rolling system (where stats are between 4 and 18), and I thought the restrictions on the stats you are choosing should reflect that. Also, with these numbers there is a 10.35% chance of having to start over, which I thought was reasonable.


The partial point buy system ensures that all characters have stats that add up to 74, keeping the relative power of all of the characters much closer together. It also has some randomness in the form of rolling the first 4 stats, allowing every character to be unique, with their own strengths amd weaknesses.