Charisma's usefulness and action points

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Throughout the 3.X edition, there have been many complaints of charisma being a dump stat for classes that have nothing built into charisma.

I have a feeling that since action points are "really cool" and "I wouldn't ever want to go back to the old way of using action points" that charisma might have a factor into your action points as many people have actually already used a houserule for campaigns that already have actions points (such as eberron).

I wonder what other things they've used for charisma besides what's already there in 3.X, and possibly action points.

Anyone else have any other predictions on what Charisma might be used for?
Well realisticly, Cha should be the lowest stats for alot of classess, if your primary ability in life is to run around in the wilderness killing sentient beings for pay, do you think you fit well into society?

People who dont care about killing and maiming people have something called anti-social personality disorder.
That completely depends on your party's point of view.

The paladin wouldn't want to do that for pay, s/he wants to make the world a better place.

I hate to bring up LotR but, Frodo did it because he felt he had to, to save middle earth, not because he was being paid.

The most heroic of heroes do it for their own reasons as opposed to being paid for it, and when they do get paid, it's to forward their own goals to remove the evil threat that looms, not to lavish themselves in luxury while urinating on the public.

That speaks highly of their charisma, their personal force, not poorly, imho.
Well I guess I have just played in to many groups where the goal has only ever been to get paid, the games I play tend towards nuetral and evil alignments, not good.
I would have to agree that that's probably a bit more like people who would fit into a lower charisma.

But the main thing I disagreed with was the fact that the PC classes themselves lended themselves to lower charisma, which they are pretty much just mechanics. Characters aren't just their mechanics.
There's currently, imho, a huge problem with Charisma and Wisdom. Charisma represents your force of will, including you ability to influence others with that force of will, but somehow that force of will doesn't help you resist mental attacks? Wisdom represents your ability notice things around you (and as a side, your "common sense") and how in tune you are with your environment, but somehow it also represents your will power?

I think the mechanics of both attributes need to be reworked and made more consistent.
I think the main problem Charisma has always faced is that D&D (both under TSR and under WotC) has been perfectly willing to write up all manner of rules and regulations for what characters can physically do, but have shied away from making rules for characters can mentally or socially do. This mostly makes sense, given the way the game is played: like many other RPG's and board games, it is designed to require very little physical activity from the players, but encourage intellectual and social playing.

If there were a lot of rules for "social combat", and you had to roll to see what your character is allowed to say, then Charisma would be useful for everyone, since almost every character is called upon to interact socially at some point. But most people don't want to play this way; part of the fun is that the players decide what their characters say and think, with little input from the dice. And the DM wants the freedom to let his NPC's and monsters have their own ideas and personalities.

So, while I could envision a bunch of combat-centric charisma abilities like taunting an enemy into attacking you, or stunning him for a round with an insult, or causing him to flee through intimidation, etc., it's unlikely that they would be popular since most people want to keep dialogue relatively dice-free. This leaves Charisma in a tough place, since now it can mostly only be used as a stat for "vague indescribable coolness factor".

I think one simple fix might be to just make Charisma the stat that affects Will saves, and then make Wisdom into much more of the "Perception" stat that WotC wishes it was. And then use Perception for more than just spot and listen checks; it could give you an AC dodge bonus or increase your initiative instead of (or in addition to) Dexterity.
If there were a lot of rules for "social combat", and you had to roll to see what your character is allowed to say, then Charisma would be useful for everyone, since almost every character is called upon to interact socially at some point. But most people don't want to play this way; part of the fun is that the players decide what their characters say and think, with little input from the dice. And the DM wants the freedom to let his NPC's and monsters have their own ideas and personalities.

Have you listened to the podcast about the diplomacy changes they are playtesting now? Sounds like there will be more "social combat" in 4th than a single diplomacy roll, when used.

It actually sounds a lot of the way I ad-hoc house-rule run diplomacy in my games.
There's currently, imho, a huge problem with Charisma and Wisdom. Charisma represents your force of will, including you ability to influence others with that force of will, but somehow that force of will doesn't help you resist mental attacks? Wisdom represents your ability notice things around you (and as a side, your "common sense") and how in tune you are with your environment, but somehow it also represents your will power?

I think the mechanics of both attributes need to be reworked and made more consistent.

Now... if they made will saving throws chrisma-based (which would make sense) it would improve and balance charisma's importance.
Then... would wisdom be the default dump stat?

I've always felt that wisdom helps you make the right decisions. How could we reflect this in game mechanics?
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