I have a big issue with NPCs spending on attacks against the players. I'm a GM that doesn't like player death very much, generally if the player does something stupid i'll punish them through story (and with 'sources of stability'. NBA gives a myriad of options to get evil), but I hate the idea of a good roll means you're out of play. Frankly I work hard to write and prep the games so a character dropping out hurts me just as badly.
The spending of points by NPCs in a fight seems almost malicious - the GM is overtly saying "I've made the out of game decision to hurt you". Players also need to ration out their points through a scenario while NPCs can flush everything for the scene they are in.
I thought of a few options:
1. Random spend.
Add a die to your roll either using a novelty d6 or make a mental table. a 1-3 means no spend, a 4= a spend of 1, 5=2, 6=3 or thereabouts.
2. Spend by emotion.
Since it's assumed npcs and players alike are equally competent in their combat abilities, the npc swill spend when under a type of stress (that is beyond the scope of a firefight). If enraged they might pour in a few points to target the source of their anger, or if men are dropping around them like flies their fear may merit a spend. Otherwise they don't spend at all. This feels less 'arbitrary' to me.
3. Spend for FX
Only use the points to justify special actions like multiple shots and so on.
Ok granted sometimes I'll make a spend just to keep the action interesting, or if the players need to tone down the cockiness, regardless of above.
Has anyone else found this an issue?
[Sorry if I've reiterated a previous question but I've browsed the forums and the web and people have voiced this in some shape or another without much of a solution.]