Action-Heroes RPG

Action-Heroes is a cinematic toolkit role-playing game that gives gaming groups the tools to adapt their favorite fictional world and explore those worlds through games and stories.


Choose Your Version: Digital PDF

Digital PDF

Creator: Christopher Helton
Category: TTRPG, Action and Adventure
Age Range: 12+
Suggested Players: Three to six players and a Game Master to run the game.

Vibes: Super-Hero, Gold Age Comics, Classic Comics, Retro Comics

In Short: Action-Heroes encourages collaborative play that gives players the tools to play larger than life characters with explosive action that roots them as the center of their world. Game masters have the tools to bring their favorite worlds to life, and set loose the players’ characters in them to create widescreen, cinematic adventures.

What's It About: Action-Heroes is a hybrid of old school and more contemporary design ideas and aesthetics. While the game master can create independently a world the players explore, the game provides tools that allow the gaming group as a whole to develop the basics of the world together. To support the growing need for safety at the gaming table, Action-Heroes gives groups both guidance and tools to help make all of the people in the group feel safer and more comfortable during play.

Action-Heroes features simple game play using six-sided dice for everything. The success or failure of actions undertaken by characters during a game are determined by a roll of 3d6 (plus modifiers from things like character Attributes, Skills or Abilities) against a target number determined by the game master. The mechanic simulates the "reality" of action-oriented movies, fiction, and comic books rather than that of the "real world," so there is an emphasis on characters that are competent and "ready for action." The book offers guidance for players and game masters alike on how to play “larger than life” characters and create big, cinematic stories. Action Points let players create advantages for their characters within the story of the game. Special advantages called Abilities allow players to simulate the unique training, awesome talents—and, yes, even super-human powers that frequently appear in action stories. From pulp adventure to super-powered action, your Action-Heroes characters will be ready to face a dangerous world.

Action-Heroes was built under the Open Gaming License 1.0, and it brings together a number of open content sources for a new and exciting game. There are no classes in the Action-Heroes RPG, and characters are built using pools of points that allow players to customize their characters to the ideas that they have in their heads.


Christopher Helton started on the gaming scene with the Dorkland! blog, one of the earliest tabletop role-playing game blogs, in 2003. He covered news and reviewed a variety of games, and launched a YouTube channel interviewing RPG publishers and designers, at his blog. From this he launched into pop culture journalism and criticism, writing for popular websites Bleeding Cool and EN World. He has written and worked behind the scenes for a variety of publishers from Battlefield Press to Gallant Knight Games to Petersen Games.