The two actions economy



The two actions economy is simple:
Everyone gets two actions per turn.

Action types:
Move - Simple - Check - Attempt

Examples of turns:

  • Move + Move
  • Move + Action
  • attempt + (HARD) attempt

If a the same action is choosen twice in the same turn, the action is HARD. This rule doesn’t apply on the move or simple action.

Edit: If a monster has 2 actions convert it to two “regular” actions, the second one is never HARD.

Edit : Delete the rule that make the second action EASY if it’s first attempt missed.

Action Types : Conditional Action

Is this inspired by TinyD6? 'cause I once tried to bring the “two actions economy” of that adventure game to our favorite D20 game. But the only thing I really enjoyed of TinyD6 was the Focus action that raised your chance of success, which does not translate too well in a D20 game…

Anyway, why can’t the HARD rule apply on the move action? I feel that is a tad weird: what if I ran to the hill and now I have to climb it, can’t climbing be HARD because I’m breathless?


There is no roll for a move action, it is only moving the token to another place of the board.
Doing the same action twice during the same turn makes the second one harder.

The rule comes from Pathfinder 2e.
First attack : no malus
Second attack : -5
Third attack : -10


Ah! And I see you too saw that three actions might have been too much, huh? :wink:

Well, in my games some movement may require a check, 'cause some terrain is either difficult or just part of the action of moving (like jumping from one rock to the other) and I don’t want to charge :money_mouth_face: my player for a move action. But then again, I’m starting to realize that maybe it makes more sense in your system. One action to jump on the rock without a check… and a second rock if he wants to instead of attacking. Yeah, it makes sense, I remove my criticism! :+1:


Pathfinder is crunchy but they have their action economy down. I think, I’m gonna implement that in my game.


Yeah I’ve used a similar rule for my Fallout ICRPG hack, based on The Mecha Hack.


For this example, how do you deal with the ICRPG rule that Attempting the exact same thing you did last turn is now EASY?

For example I would assume:
Turn 1: I Attempt and fail, then HARD attempt again and fail.
Turn 2: I attempt a third time, it’s EASY but I still fail, for my forth try is the attempt HARD or just normal?


I just delete it. That is all. I don’t like it. If it don’t work try something else, be creative. I don’t want to encourage the player to do the same things over and over again.

Turn 1: I Attempt and fail, then HARD attempt again and fail.
Turn 2: I Attempt and fail, then HARD attempt again and fail.
To infinity

If i want to include in ICrpg something to help the PC, i would use the optional rule that add increment a d6 everytime a PC fails. The number of the die might be use to give a bonus to one roll and then be reset to 1.

But if you want an adaptation :
Turn 1: I Attempt and fail, then HARD attempt again and fail.
Turn 2: I attempt a third time, it’s EASY but I still fail, for my forth try is the attempt normal. It stops there.
I find it a bit messy though.

Where is that rule in the book ?
I base my hack on the ICrpg 2e, i find it easier to hack.


That all makes sense, and for the sake of simplification just stick with your rule and dropping the one from the book. I wouldn’t go any further than that.

The “Tried it once” rule is in Core 2e on page 13 of the PDF. Under “Examples of Making a Target Easy” it says “You’ve Already tried that once.” Not the clearest rule to be fair but I have seen it discussed here and on the patreon discord with the intent being that if you tried and failed, and tried the exact same thing again its easy. Generally speaking I think it counts for situations where doing something different is not really important, or for when you need to keep the tension up and the action moving.

For my two cents on the whole two action economy idea, I would go as simple as possible for ICRPG and just say that if you don’t move, you can do “Something Else”. But it has to be a “simple” action and that can be determined as required instead of having it quite so concrete.

I think you have a good frame work here though! It is SLIGHTLY more codified than I like, but there are a lot of players who would really enjoy it I think.


I’ve been using a 2 action economy system for ages. I saw the move (near) + action and move (far) options and thought it odd that action (close) seemed to be a single choice while the 2 previous options seemed to be double choices.

In regards to your example, in play if an attempt is made and it fails the next attempt within the same turn is attempted at normal. If the character is willing to spend both of their actions to attempt a task then they earn a +3 to the roll. I apply this in various ways, spend one action within the turn to aim/feint and gain a +3 to the attack roll. A PC can attack + defend which garners a +3 to their Def Stat against one opponent or spend both actions in a turn to gain +3 to Def Stat versus all known opponents in a turn.

The 2 action economy is seen as a boon at our game table, allowing for more options while marginally slowing down the gameplay by using a +3 as a bonus as a standard. Some game changes were enacted such as Recovery takes both actions in a turn but heals 1d4 +Con, Spells take 1 action per Spell Power Level + 1 to cast, and so on.

Of course all above is what suits our tastes in gaming but one of the beauties of ICRPG is that the game can be as simple or as complex as you want it to be.