Create Opportunity - Momentum use after die roll

The Create Opportunity momentum spend options specifically states momentum must be spent (or Doom added) before the dice are rolled and the result determined. However on the page before (p.101) its states very clearly that “the player does not need to declare what Momentum is being used for until the time it is spent” and that “Momentum spends can be made as soon as the need for them becomes apparent.” They even give an example of not having to declare momentum to increase damage until after the original damage dice are rolled. This seems to be to be in conflict. Can someone help me out?

I just rolled a Survival roll to track an enemy. I failed. Can I now spend some momentum if I have it or give the GM some Doom to add another dice or two and try and recover from that failure?

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Create Opportunity is an Immediate spend. Its explained in its description. These are done before the roll is made. Once the roll is made you can not add more dice to the test. So in your failed Survival test you can not add more d20s.

Most momentum spends can used at any time. It’s not a conflict it’s just certain spends have limitations.

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For example you can spend momentum to increase damage after rolling. But you can’t do that for skills tests.

Puts on designer hat

So, under normal circumstances, you can only spend Momentum after a successful skill test. You make an attack, generate 2 Momentum, and spend it to do more damage, or to pierce their armour, etc. With that in mind, you don’t have to pre-choose how you want to spend that Momentum. You’ve rolled the damage roll, and it’s a bit lacklustre, so you spend one Momentum to re-roll. That gives you a total of 6, you can’t afford to buy up enough extra damage to wipe out their Vigor, so you choose to save the other one. Or, you’re searching a room that was ransacked, you get three Momentum, you can spend them one at a time to ask the GM extra questions, waiting until each question is answered before you choose to spend the next one.

Immediate Momentum spends are an exception to this rule of timing. Immediate Momentum spends can be used at times other than immediately after a successful test. Most of these have their own rules on when they can be used, like Create Opportunity, which must be used before you roll any dice on a test (but you can wait until right before you make that test, so you don’t have to buy them in previous turns in anticipation). Immediate Momentum spends can also be paid for with Doom, but that’s a distinct rule from the matter of timing.

If you’ve rolled and failed, you can’t buy extra dice to change that.


That’s very helpful, thankyou!

Thanks for the great summary Nathan!

I think we need more and more official FAQ and not to rely on the google-doc based ones

So when spending Momentum to either increase damage or penetrate armour, do the players have to choose to spend it before rolling the damage dice, or can they spend it after rolling? Particularly for weapons with Piercing this timing could make a big difference - can it mitigate a bad roll, or a good one but without any Effects, or do the players have to choose whether to gamble on whether to spend a Momentum or two to guarantee armour penetration, or hope they roll enough Effects on the damage to trigger enough Piercing and then save the Momentum for something else?


This is where the “player does not need to declare what Momentum is being used for until the time it is spent” clause comes into play. You roll your damage dice (e.g., 5 cd Piercing 1, you roll 1,3,4,4,4) and then decide what Momentum to spend on those damage dice.

You could spend 1 Momentum to reroll the 4 that were zeroes. You could spend Momentum to ignore 2 points of armor (per point) because the badguy’s out of Vigor and any damage past armor causes a Wound. You could spend Momentum to increase the damage.

You could spend Momentum to do any/all of those things. Example:

Byris the Hyrkanian hits an unhurt brigand with his bow and does 5 [cd] Piercing 1 with it. He rolls 1,3,3,4,4 on his damage dice and does NOT like the outcome. He generated four Momentum on his attack roll, and spends 1 to reroll 4 of the dice. He gets 1,2,2,3,4, a respectable 5 points of damage. He is firing on brigandine-wearing brigands (2 points of armor) and since he didn’t get an Effect, his bow’s Piercing Quality doesn’t help.

Byris could reroll again, but with only 2 dice in the reroll, he’s still unlikely to get that Piercing, and VERY unlikely to get Piercing 2. He decides to spend 1 Momentum to ignore 2 points of armor, doing [effectively] 5 points Piercing 2. This is enough to cause a Wound, but the brigand is Toughened, so he doesn’t die. Byris puts the 2 remaining Momentum into damage, doing 7 points of Vigor (and that Wound for doing 5 points or more).

Note that Byris could have spent that last two points of Momentum to fire a second shot at +1 Difficulty, had the situation called for it.

Only if you allow that as a house rule, because on a re-roll you have to keep the new result of the re-rolled dice.

As a house rule for our games we allow the free re-roll of damage dice due to the repective Melee or Ranged Combat talents in addition to the re-roll for the 1 Momentum spend. But that is not as written, it is a house rule.

Yes, I just checked and re-roll damage is not repeatable as it’s listed as a cost of 1 and not I/R so it’s usable once per round. Interestingly, this also means that if you attack multiple times then you can only re-roll one set of the damage dice, according to the RAW.

Anyway, I’ve had a look and yes, it doesn’t seem to be specified anywhere that you have to declare bonus damage/penetration spends before the damage roll - great, so my PCs can kick out a bit more damage, hahaha/sob

Yeah, I realized that after posting – good catch!

You can reroll the damage dice twice if you have either Accurate (Ranged Weapons) or No Mercy (Melee), and then use Momentum to also reroll, but no more than that.

I do not believe that the “have to keep the new result” rule precludes having a second means to re-roll (such as the Accurate + Momentum Spend example). I believe the game designers intended that to mean that you can’t keep the better roll of a given set of original + re-rolled dice. (This as opposed to Advantage in D&D 5ED, where you keep the better die.)

You may only reroll any die once, by any means. If you used No Mercy to reroll 2 dice from a danage roll, those dice cannot be rerolled by spending Momentum (but the rest can).


Aha, the plot thickens - I’m sure I remembered reading that somewhere, now you say it. Thanks for clarifying that.