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Arch Lich Thoth-Amon
04-24-2009, 08:13 PM
Everyone has their own Homebrew Rules. Please share some of yours with the rest of us. Be sure to list the game, and the edition, if applicable. All rpg homebrew rules are welcomed.

What share you?

jade von delioch
04-24-2009, 11:40 PM
For Palladium Fantasy i use a special set of rules for Pole-arms: Opponents must spend one action to move within striking range of the wielder. The wielder can counter the action by both characters rolling 1D20 + their P.P. bonuses; the highest roll wins. If the oppoent is in strike range of the wielder then the wielder is at a -2 to strike with either end of the weapon and -1 to disarm.

Lucian-Sunaka
04-25-2009, 12:07 AM
It's a fairly minor one, but in my D&D 3.5 games, the Paladin's lay on hands is an immediate or swift action, rather than a standard action. It's just not enough healing to waste a standard action, or to really heal you between battles, all it's good for, in most cases, is an emergency "Oh crap I'm gonna die save me jesus" moment lol.

yukonhorror
04-25-2009, 08:17 AM
for a nat 1, we had more dire consequences happen than just miss.

If nat 20 gives you something cool, nat 1 should give you something uncool.

In 1e, we rolled 1d6. No matter the roll, the opponent got a free atk on you. On a 1-2, you fumbled your weapon, but recover. On a 3-4, you threw your weapon in a random direction. On a 5-6, you hit yourself, roll d20 to see if you hit AC, then roll dam if hit AC.

In 4e, trying something similar with my new group, but it only provokes an opportunity atk on a 5-6, if not using a weapon 3-4 dazes you until end of you next turn, and a 1-2 you lose a healing surge (analogous to hitting one's self).

Sascha
04-25-2009, 11:42 AM
If I ever get enough interest in a Star Wars Saga Edition game, I'd totally steal FATE's aspects rules and apply them to Force Points; they're asking - nay, begging - to be used in such a manner. "Refresh each level" seems so ... arbitrary. Along with that, make Force powers take a point to activate, and waive the per-encounter limits; means taking the same power multiple times is silly ... 'cause it is silly.

Natural <any roll> ... I really, really want to change, to explicitly have no effect, but I dunno if I'd implement it right off the bat.

wbrandel
04-25-2009, 02:08 PM
One thing I have done in my D&D games (although I did slack off there for a bit), was training before leveling up. It takes one week game time and will cost you 50 gp per level. That is after you find a NPC of the target level or higher to teach you. I started this when I started running 3.5 D&D. It didn't make sense to me that you just automaticly gain a level and go "cool new feat/power I just got"

Lucian-Sunaka
04-25-2009, 02:15 PM
I'm mostly the opposite. I don't agree with the whole training to increase a level. That's the whole concept of experience. Sure, train to learn a new class if you want to run that rule, but to me it's stupid to have the concept of gaining experience to earn levels and then paying somebody to train that level into you and spending time to do it.

The time and effort is spent killing the monsters and practicing your moves, you learn new spells or develop new capabilities (read: Feats and skill ranks) during your adventures. In my mind, if people could train levels, just scrap the whole experience concept entirely, just have the monsters give more treasure, and have progressive levels cost more and more to train.

Maybe it's a houserule, and thus belongs in this thread, and maybe it's just one of several choices given somewhere in the DMG or whatever, but my characters level up right in the middle of the adventure. When they've achieved sufficient combat experience, been put through enough hell, they achieve 'the next level of skill and power," aka go up to the next level. For multi-classing or prestige classes I do require they have some training in it, but that only needs to be in their background, they don't have to be put through 'basic training' every time they want to study a new trade.

gajenx
04-25-2009, 07:57 PM
I have 2 really 3 homebrew rules.

1. in 3.5 D&D I would increase the skill points a character receives by 8 at first level and by 2 each additional level. I love the diversity you can do with skills, but no one can really do it with the level they give to each class.

2. In Scion I state in character creation you buy the highest level power and get the lower one or ones for free in your purviews since otherwise it makes little sense for people to get the over just buying Epic stats. Epics give you bonus successes and a power for each level you have.

3. In Runequest, now we are talking some old school shit here, I have a modified character creation system based on points so you can do more with the game, along with extended magic and martial arts manuevers. A.k.a. I have updated the system so it could appeal to more players who are not used to the more realistic style low to mid magic fantasy games.

MortonStromgal
04-25-2009, 11:17 PM
nWOD - For Mortals and Mages the damage track is changed to -1, -2, -3, -4, -5, INC

D&D 3.5 - 1st level you get double hit dice

Dytrrnikl
04-29-2009, 01:16 AM
For Shadowrun 2e and 3e, when I ran it, d6 was not the standard that was used, I changed it to d10. It was simple enough to modify target numbers and made for a more enjoyable game.

In DnD 3E, BAB stacked from class to class when multi-classing, making your attack improve no matter how you multi-classed. THe same couldn't be said about spells, if you were a spellcaster. I set it up that 1/2 (rounded down) of your non-spellcaster class level counted towards the spells that multi-classed spellcasters were able to cast in regard to duration, damage, range, or other level based factor. Thus a 15th level character that had 9 levels of Wizard and 6 levels of Thief cast all his spells as though he was a 12th level wizard. Which was his effective caster level.

I have always despised how Force Points have been handled since the game began being produced by WotC. ANyone familiar with the WEG d6 system new that spending a force point in that game resulted in heaping handful of dice to toss, as FP in WEG doubled the number of dice you tossed for all skills during that particular round, and once spent they were gone unless GM judged that it was used in a Heroic fashion. This is what I did in WotC Star Wars d20:
- If not Force-Sensitive, max FP equal to 1/2 Wisdom score. Force-Sensitive characters had no limit on number of FP they could have.
- Spending a Force Point granted a Force bonus to all task resolution rolls equal to 1/2 your character level plus the number of Force Points you currently had.
- Any use of Force Skills that did damage to others was ruled an aggressive use of the Force, regardless of the why, resulting in a Darkside Point.
- Once you spent a Force Point it was gone.
- You began play with a number of Force Points equal to your Wisdom modifier, that once spent, they did not return, and you didn't automatically gain a Force Point each level.

With the Saga edition, A Force Point Functions like a Destiny Point. You get 1 per level, and have a max of 1/2 wisdom for non-Jedi/non-force sensitive and no limit for Jedi/Force Sensitives. You can earn more by performing acts of dramatic heroism, but no more than 1 in any adventure. Due to how Force Points work, their are Character Points for the purpose of Talents, Feats, or other class features that require a Force Point to activate.

tesral
05-01-2009, 11:20 AM
MD&D 2.8 Edition Player's Manual. I have two chapters to go. Magic is in proofreading. Combat yet to be done.

Cover (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/Cover-all.pdf)
Title Page (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/Title-page.pdf)
Table of Contents (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/00_Table%20of%20Contents.pdf)
The Physical World (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/00_The%20Physical%20World.pdf)
Chapter One: Introduction and Cultures (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/01_Manual_Culture.pdf)
Chapter Two: Ability Scores (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/02_Manual_Ability_Scores.pdf)
Chapter Three: Player Character Races (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/03_Manual_Races.pdf)
Chapter Four:: Character Classes (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/04_Manual_Classes.pdf)
Chapter Five: Character Skills (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/05_Manual_Skills.pdf)
Chapter Six: Money & Equipment (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/06_Manual_Money&Equipment.pdf)
Chapter Seven: Combat
Chapter Eight: Magic
Chapter Nine Psionic Abilities (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/09_Manual_psionics.pdf)
Appendix A -- Other Races (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/X1_Appendix%20A_Races.pdf)
Appendix B -- Other Classes (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/X2_Appendix%20B_Classes.pdf)

Thelrain
07-01-2009, 11:49 PM
AC in D&D has always bothered me. Armor doesn't prevent you from getting hit, it prevents you from getting wounded. So all armor in my D20 has damage reduction instead of AC. In order to compensate the drop in AC I allow all characters to spend any of their attack bonus to their defense bonus instead. So someone with +7 base attack could spend 4 on attack and 3 on defense. This gives a little more feel for a character adept with a weapon to parry and defend himself with it or a character taking 'cautious attacks' instead of an all out swing with everything he's got.

I also introduce a variant of fighting defensively which is 'avoid melee' and characters receive a +6 dodge bonus with no attacks. Think of all those movies where a nimble character is being chased by some huge warrior with a weapon and manages to keep avoiding being hit by staying away.

korhal23
07-02-2009, 12:04 AM
If I ever get enough interest in a Star Wars Saga Edition game, I'd totally steal FATE's aspects rules and apply them to Force Points; they're asking - nay, begging - to be used in such a manner. "Refresh each level" seems so ... arbitrary. Along with that, make Force powers take a point to activate, and waive the per-encounter limits; means taking the same power multiple times is silly ... 'cause it is silly.


Actually, this has changed over time in Saga with new talents that have been introduced, particularly in the Jedi Training Manual. Jedi recuperate force points at a lightning quick pace with the right talents. And you can spend a force point to recover a power you've already used in combat. At low levels, sure, it kinda can seem limited for Jedi... but you have to remember that until you cross into the Jedi Knight prestige class, you're just a padawan. I mean, you don't even build your own lightsaber until level 7. And by the time you're a Jedi Knight, you have a nice suite of powers. I like how they did Force Powers in Saga... heck, I think I'd like powers in D&D 4E even better if they worked like Saga's Force Powers.
--- Merged from Double Post ---

AC in D&D has always bothered me. Armor doesn't prevent you from getting hit, it prevents you from getting wounded. So all armor in my D20 has damage reduction instead of AC. In order to compensate the drop in AC I allow all characters to spend any of their attack bonus to their defense bonus instead. So someone with +7 base attack could spend 4 on attack and 3 on defense. This gives a little more feel for a character adept with a weapon to parry and defend himself with it or a character taking 'cautious attacks' instead of an all out swing with everything he's got.

I also introduce a variant of fighting defensively which is 'avoid melee' and characters receive a +6 dodge bonus with no attacks. Think of all those movies where a nimble character is being chased by some huge warrior with a weapon and manages to keep avoiding being hit by staying away.

Actually, armor making you harder to hit makes sense. If you're wearing heavy platemail, the reason it's effective at all is that when you do get hit, it's supposed to deflect the blow. The way that I've always played d20 games is to take your base AC, and then add armor to it. If an attack would've hit you without your armor on, but it misses with your armor bonus, then the attack bounced off the armor. Also, I use the same theory for cover... if the bonus you receive from cover is what saves you, then the attack hits the cover. In a game with guns and bulletproof vests however, you're exactly right, armor reduces damage, and doesn't make you any harder to hit.

What you have to remember is D&D and d20 as a whole abstract a lot of the combat. Does it matter whether you got hit or just resisted the damage? Not really, from a mechanical standpoint. So abstract it. That said, I like your attack/parry thing... reminiscent of another game I can't think of the name of right now, so that'll keep me up at night trying to remember. Do you let mages and other ranged characters have a similar ability though? Or is that just a melee power?

As for fighting defensively... eh. I like the normal fight defensive, and I also like Saga edition's Fight Defensive (+2 bonus to defense if you attack, +5 if you don't, and there's a feat to change those numbers to +5 and +10 respectively. There's a penalty to the attacks if you take them, but it's not relevant to the discussion). I think that as far as your small nimble character vs. big warrior thing goes, size category differences and the normal fight defensive cover it well enough already.
--- Merged from Double Post ---


I have always despised how Force Points have been handled since the game began being produced by WotC. ANyone familiar with the WEG d6 system new that spending a force point in that game resulted in heaping handful of dice to toss, as FP in WEG doubled the number of dice you tossed for all skills during that particular round, and once spent they were gone unless GM judged that it was used in a Heroic fashion. This is what I did in WotC Star Wars d20:
- If not Force-Sensitive, max FP equal to 1/2 Wisdom score. Force-Sensitive characters had no limit on number of FP they could have.
- Spending a Force Point granted a Force bonus to all task resolution rolls equal to 1/2 your character level plus the number of Force Points you currently had.
- Any use of Force Skills that did damage to others was ruled an aggressive use of the Force, regardless of the why, resulting in a Darkside Point.
- Once you spent a Force Point it was gone.
- You began play with a number of Force Points equal to your Wisdom modifier, that once spent, they did not return, and you didn't automatically gain a Force Point each level.

With the Saga edition, A Force Point Functions like a Destiny Point. You get 1 per level, and have a max of 1/2 wisdom for non-Jedi/non-force sensitive and no limit for Jedi/Force Sensitives. You can earn more by performing acts of dramatic heroism, but no more than 1 in any adventure. Due to how Force Points work, their are Character Points for the purpose of Talents, Feats, or other class features that require a Force Point to activate.

I think you're kind of missing the point of Force Points in Saga. The Force is not a Bennie, or a mana pool in the Star Wars universe, it permeates everything. Characters who are force sensitive merely use the Force knowingly and in a controlled manner. Non-Force sensitive characters merely think they have good luck or some such thing, but they simply don't know that they're manipulating the Force too, just typically in a more subtle manner. You don't run out of Force either, though as a balance mechanic I can see why RPGs and video games set in the Star Wars universe tend to treat the Force as a (often quickly regenerating) mana pool. Sure, it may not seem like a level 1 Jedi has that many more Force Points than a level 1 Noble (they don't) but compare, say, 10th level characters. The Jedi (who has probably crossed into Jedi Knight) now has Force Points coming out the wazoo and they regenerate quickly, while the Noble is still only going to have a few, and they won't regenerate in nearly the same way.

And ANY use of the Force that causes harm is Dark Side? I don't think so. It's the emotionality behind your actions that causes the Dark Side to rise in someone. The reason why no one kills the Emperor when they had him on the ropes at the end of The Force Unleashed is that no one could kill him without hate and anger in their hearts. The reason why Vader is able to kill the Emperor at the end of RotJ is that his heart isn't filled with hate, it's filled with love and compassion for Luke. Beyond that, all lightsaber fighting styles are infused with the Force, many of the combat force powers deal damage (as Saga doesn't differentiate between types of damage, some of the powers are obviously from the descriptions only talking someone down, and they still deal damage, and even stun damage also does not get counted separately)... this rule above all others hamstrings your players beyond measure in a combat scenario. Using the Force to torture earns you a Dark Side point. Using the Force to harm innocents, the helpless, or those who are surrendering earns you a Dark Side point. Using the Force in combat, however, does not. Hothead that he is, even Anakin's fall is not due entirely to his actions in combat. Sure, he invested himself emotionally into some fights, such as versus Dooku in Ep. II, probably resulting in a Dark Side point or two. And his execution of Dooku at the beginning of Ep. III was definitely Dark Side worthy. Over time, though, Palpatine had been inflicting Dark Side upon Anakin because Anakin believed what Palpatine was saying. By the time he goes on his murder spree, he's already full Dark Side, owing very little of that to his actions in combat.

Do I think WotC's game is perfect? No. But it is well done, well balanced, and I believe gives the effect you are going for far better than you realize.

Thelrain
07-02-2009, 01:15 AM
Actually, armor making you harder to hit makes sense. If you're wearing heavy platemail, the reason it's effective at all is that when you do get hit, it's supposed to deflect the blow. The way that I've always played d20 games is to take your base AC, and then add armor to it. If an attack would've hit you without your armor on, but it misses with your armor bonus, then the attack bounced off the armor. Also, I use the same theory for cover... if the bonus you receive from cover is what saves you, then the attack hits the cover. In a game with guns and bulletproof vests however, you're exactly right, armor reduces damage, and doesn't make you any harder to hit.

What you have to remember is D&D and d20 as a whole abstract a lot of the combat. Does it matter whether you got hit or just resisted the damage? Not really, from a mechanical standpoint. So abstract it. That said, I like your attack/parry thing... reminiscent of another game I can't think of the name of right now, so that'll keep me up at night trying to remember. Do you let mages and other ranged characters have a similar ability though? Or is that just a melee power?


I based the splitting of the attack bonus for defense on the Rolemaster/MERP system which would allow you to use some of your % attack on your % defense. Maybe that is the system you are thinking of. For mages/rogues if they are proficient with the weapon then yes! A quarterstaff or dagger can deflect/parry melee attacks.

For me it does matter if a character does get hit while wearing armor. I understand the AC concept but I just don't like it. Armor doesn't last forever. It takes damage from being hit. Leather can be cut, plate can be dented, chainmail can be punctured.

If two people were standing side by side, one in plate and one in leather and you hauled off and hit them both with a baseball bat, both would hit but only one would probably be damaged.

In a case where someone has a flaming sword, or an electrical charged sword, touch attacks, crush attacks, etc it can make a big difference. If you are being squeezed by a giant the leather armor isn't going to help much but that plate will! A plate wearer getting kicked by an giant might not take any damage might go flying! Just a preference when handling certain damaging situations and since damage reduction is already in the game, why not use it where it should really be used. I just like a 'hit' to be a 'hit' and not a 'just not wounded'.

"Rick your warrior has taken about 20 hits from those pesky lil kobolds and although you are unhurt your armor needs a little adjusting. "



As for fighting defensively... eh. I like the normal fight defensive, and I also like Saga edition's Fight Defensive (+2 bonus to defense if you attack, +5 if you don't, and there's a feat to change those numbers to +5 and +10 respectively. There's a penalty to the attacks if you take them, but it's not relevant to the discussion). I think that as far as your small nimble character vs. big warrior thing goes, size category differences and the normal fight defensive cover it well enough already.

I'm not familiar with Saga's version of defensive fighting. There just aren't any rules that I am aware of that give you a bonus of completely avoiding combat and being as defensive as possible. The fighting defensively assumes you are still going to make an attack. What about if you are just interested in saving your own hide and forgoing any attacks? That's why I introduced it.

TheRageOfGaia
07-02-2009, 01:49 AM
I also like the split your attack bonus rule.

There are several house rules that I like to use for all of my games, some of them are just jokes that started, others are serious.

For example, Rule 0 - As a player, never give the DM ideas. For example, we use natural 1s as critical failures, if Player A rolls a 1, Player B shouldn't say "OH MAN, he's gonna chop off his toe!"

This sort of gave birth to what my old group called "The 0th Amendment" (as in the Constitution) which protects the American Right to *****. As in, "I always get hit, my mountain dew is warm." "Great, JoeBob is using his 0th Amendment rights."

And, my personal favorite house rule, the Platypus Rule. This refers to the apparent error God made when he created the platypus. The rule reads: All mistakes are final. It's impossible for anyone to remember all of the rules in a game, especially one with a lot of rules like D&D or GURPS. So. If it is brought to the attention of the DM that a spell should have had a will save instead of a reflex save, or whatever, the old rulings still stand, but future rulings will use the correct system. This eliminates a lot of tension, aggravation, arguing, and speeds up gameplay because people aren't stopping to look up rules to end quibbles. Just at the beginning of the game, let everyone know about the Platypus Rule.

Lucian-Sunaka
07-02-2009, 02:38 AM
Ummmm... thelrain. It's called Total Defense, and it grants twice the bonus fighting defensively does. Fighting defensively grants +2, +3 if you have at least 5 ranks in tumble, and you double that if you take Total Defense (meaning no attack for the round)

Sascha
07-02-2009, 03:51 AM
Actually, this has changed over time in Saga with new talents that have been introduced, particularly in the Jedi Training Manual. Jedi recuperate force points at a lightning quick pace with the right talents. And you can spend a force point to recover a power you've already used in combat. At low levels, sure, it kinda can seem limited for Jedi... but you have to remember that until you cross into the Jedi Knight prestige class, you're just a padawan. I mean, you don't even build your own lightsaber until level 7. And by the time you're a Jedi Knight, you have a nice suite of powers. I like how they did Force Powers in Saga... heck, I think I'd like powers in D&D 4E even better if they worked like Saga's Force Powers.
Heh, all I have is the main book, and it's likely that'll be the extent of it. I'd rather all characters have the same access to Force Points, not just those with the right options; rewarding system mastery isn't a feature in my eyes. (Incidentally, the way 4E powers work is such an awesome change from previous editions; too bad the rest of my group feels differently :P)

Since I'm currently prepping a one-shot for Friday, these rules are getting a closer look. Gonna be taking notes on how the power suites and Force Points get used (or even if they get used), as well as armor adding to Reflex (which seems ... counterintuitive, not to mention armor doesn't seem to be, er, all that protective in the films). It's like the rules didn't go far enough from DnD assumptions to match the source material, in some respects. What I expect from the license and what the game provides mesh well, but they do have some conflicts and that spurs me to tinker ;)

Baldwin Stonewood
07-02-2009, 10:05 AM
The only homebrew rule (although I think its in the 3.5 DM Guide) is critical fumble. If a natural 1 is rolled, I have the player, monster, or npc roll again and unless they get a 10 - with dex modifier - then that person drops their weapon.

korhal23
07-02-2009, 01:02 PM
Heh, all I have is the main book, and it's likely that'll be the extent of it. I'd rather all characters have the same access to Force Points, not just those with the right options; rewarding system mastery isn't a feature in my eyes. (Incidentally, the way 4E powers work is such an awesome change from previous editions; too bad the rest of my group feels differently :P)

Since I'm currently prepping a one-shot for Friday, these rules are getting a closer look. Gonna be taking notes on how the power suites and Force Points get used (or even if they get used), as well as armor adding to Reflex (which seems ... counterintuitive, not to mention armor doesn't seem to be, er, all that protective in the films). It's like the rules didn't go far enough from DnD assumptions to match the source material, in some respects. What I expect from the license and what the game provides mesh well, but they do have some conflicts and that spurs me to tinker ;)

Out of the core book only:

If you want more force points, there's a feat called Force Boon, granting three more. If you want Force Points to be more effective when you spend them, there's Strong in the Force, which has you roll d8s instead of d6s. Force Training of course grants more powers into your suite. The reason you would stay as a Jedi and NOT cross into Jedi Knight is to get a few more feats, as Jedi receive extra feats every even level and Jedi Knights don't. If you want to return powers to your suite without spending Force Points, there are several Force Talents to do so, such as Telekenetic Savant, or Telekenetic Power which lets you use a power immediately again if you roll a nat20 on certain powers Use the Force check. Force Focus lets you make a Use the Force check as a standard action to return a power without spending a point, and even by level 3 most Jedi should be at the point where failing that check is less than 10%.

Jedi Knights also receive Force Talents. One of these is to recover a force point at the end of an encounter, and can be taken multiple times, for multiple Force point returns.

Having Destiny points in your game is another even more power addition. You gain one Destiny point per level, and if you complete your destiny and pick a new one, you gain a whole new set of Destiny points, one for each level you have attained. Destiny points have numerous effects on their own, and can greatly boost your roles and powers. They also have the power to be converted into Force Points... 1 Destiny Point = 3 Force points.

Naturally, no one will have all of these abilities under their belt, but all Force sensitive characters will have at least some of them. This system doesn't reward system mastery, it's just obvious which way you will play your character early on... some players will have Jedi who are very force power dependent, some players will have Jedi that only have a power or three. Jedi are one of those classes where all stats are relevant to them in some manner, but every person that makes a Jedi will slant him/her one way or another. If you're playing at low levels, players may feel the need to hang on to their powers until they feel they really need them, so you may see powers not used that much. Put your players around levels 5 and beyond and you'll start seeing more powers being used.

As for the armor question: Armor isn't that useful in the game. Armor adds to your Reflex Defense (like 4E, defenses are static numbers), however when wearing armor you must use the armor's Reflex bonus, instead of your Heroic Level. Sometimes this is a good thing, sometimes not so much. But that being said, you'll notice that there is no AC... Reflex Defense is your only defense against most physical attacks. Armor also has the benefit of boosting your Fortitude defense as well... So the tradeoff as you level is do you want to use armor to have your Fortitude defense be higher but hurt your Reflex, or take the armor off and lose the Fort bonus but gain Reflex. The only class that really has any use for armor beyond level 4 or 5 is the Soldier (or the Jensaarai, the rebel Jedi who blended Jedi teachings with Sith teachings to make their own branch, they wear armor too), because with talents they can potentially choose to use their Heroic Level for reflex if it's higher than the armor (while retaining the armor's Fort bonus), and then with another talent they can ADD their level and the armor bonus to Reflex.

Other than that, armor's only use is if it is also an environmental suit.

Dytrrnikl
07-02-2009, 03:25 PM
I think you're kind of missing the point of Force Points in Saga. The Force is not a Bennie, or a mana pool in the Star Wars universe, it permeates everything. Characters who are force sensitive merely use the Force knowingly and in a controlled manner. Non-Force sensitive characters merely think they have good luck or some such thing, but they simply don't know that they're manipulating the Force too, just typically in a more subtle manner.

I'm not saying The Force is supposed to be a bennie or a mana pool. I've always seen a distinction between a Jedi that uses "Use the Force" skill and then all characters being able to use Force Points. One is a constant manipulation of the Force - Use the Force, while the other is more akin to a quick, but powerful 'burst of adrenaline' - Force Point. With WotC, Force Points seem hohum and not very dramatic, especially with talents that require a Force Point to activate. The use of the Destiny mechanic and the spending of Destiny points has moer of the feel of a WEG Force Point...that quick, powerful 'burst of adrenaline' that feels dramatic and has a definate impact. For me, it's mainly a flavor thing.


You don't run out of Force either, though as a balance mechanic I can see why RPGs and video games set in the Star Wars universe tend to treat the Force as a (often quickly regenerating) mana pool. Sure, it may not seem like a level 1 Jedi has that many more Force Points than a level 1 Noble (they don't) but compare, say, 10th level characters. The Jedi (who has probably crossed into Jedi Knight) now has Force Points coming out the wazoo and they regenerate quickly, while the Noble is still only going to have a few, and they won't regenerate in nearly the same way.

Like I said, I'm not looking for the Force to be a finite 'goodad'. That's covered by the basic uses granted with the "Use the Force" skill, the Force powers suite of Saga and the variety of methods in which Force Powers in the suite can be 'returned' during an encounter. However, I do believe that 'adrenaline burst' of a Force Point is definately something that you just run out of.



And ANY use of the Force that causes harm is Dark Side? I don't think so...Beyond that, all lightsaber fighting styles are infused with the Force, many of the combat force powers deal damage (as Saga doesn't differentiate between types of damage, some of the powers are obviously from the descriptions only talking someone down, and they still deal damage, and even stun damage also does not get counted separately)... this rule above all others hamstrings your players beyond measure in a combat scenario.
I'm referring directly to powers such as Force Thrust, Force Slam, Force Grip, or Move Object to hurl something at someone or Hurl someone...not the use of a lightsaber. If the power specifically states that it is deals stun damage, only one or two that I'm aware of, then no darkside point awarded, but I warn the player that they are stepping a bit close to the darkside. I run Star Wars campaigns in which everything is very much 'black and white' - 'good or evil'.


It's the emotionality behind your actions that causes the Dark Side to rise in someone. The reason why no one kills the Emperor when they had him on the ropes at the end of The Force Unleashed is that no one could kill him without hate and anger in their hearts. The reason why Vader is able to kill the Emperor at the end of RotJ is that his heart isn't filled with hate, it's filled with love and compassion for Luke. Using the Force to torture earns you a Dark Side point. Using the Force to harm innocents, the helpless, or those who are surrendering earns you a Dark Side point. Using the Force in combat, however, does not. Hothead that he is, even Anakin's fall is not due entirely to his actions in combat. Sure, he invested himself emotionally into some fights, such as versus Dooku in Ep. II, probably resulting in a Dark Side point or two. And his execution of Dooku at the beginning of Ep. III was definitely Dark Side worthy. Over time, though, Palpatine had been inflicting Dark Side upon Anakin because Anakin believed what Palpatine was saying. By the time he goes on his murder spree, he's already full Dark Side, owing very little of that to his actions in combat.

While you make a strong case, I disagree. Your point seems to echo of the Unifying Force concept from the final book in the Yushong Vong series. That whole last book of the series is as bad as the introduction of midi-fricking-chlorians. I stick with the Light Side being a use of the Force that is in harmony with life - ie. uses that do not harm others or other life forms, while the Dark Side is a use of the Force that is out of harmony with life - ie. using the Force to harm others, either directly (as with Force Lightning, Forec Slam, Force Grip, and so forth) or indirectly (as Palpatine did by manipulating and twisting Anakin). It's a flavor thing, and one that I know not many agree with.

Arkhemedes
07-02-2009, 03:48 PM
I have fairly standard house rules such as a fumble chart for rolling 1s on attacks. And then I have other house rules that I use for certain kinds of campaigns to change the feel of the game such as critical hits for games that I want a more realistic feel or more radical changes for a homebrew campaign of mine where the characters jump from time period to time period in Earth's history. In this campaign the characters are able to switch classes with no restrictions and there are many different combat rules such as different pools for body points and stamina points. I also like to tinker with the rules a bit and try different things, all with the approval of the players of course.

Sascha
07-02-2009, 06:28 PM
Out of the core book only: <snip>
Yeah, but those are really what I'm having problems with - the idea that the Force works differently for folks with the right options. It is an example of system mastery, though nowhere near the extent of DnD 3.x.

As for armor, sure it doesn't stack with level for Reflex, but the implication is that it makes one harder to hit, which goes somewhat against the grain of the source material. 'Specially with regard to lightsabers, which aren't hindered at all by armor in the films.


I think you're kind of missing the point of Force Points in Saga. The Force is not a Bennie, or a mana pool in the Star Wars universe, it permeates everything. Characters who are force sensitive merely use the Force knowingly and in a controlled manner.
Here again is where my expectations of the license and what the system provides conflict. I want Force points to be like Fate points, in the sense that they allow bonuses (which they do), power abilities (which they do), and allow narrative control (which they don't do); that last bit is where the need for a more fluid pool comes into play.

korhal23
07-02-2009, 09:51 PM
Yeah, but those are really what I'm having problems with - the idea that the Force works differently for folks with the right options. It is an example of system mastery, though nowhere near the extent of DnD 3.x.

As for armor, sure it doesn't stack with level for Reflex, but the implication is that it makes one harder to hit, which goes somewhat against the grain of the source material. 'Specially with regard to lightsabers, which aren't hindered at all by armor in the films.


Here again is where my expectations of the license and what the system provides conflict. I want Force points to be like Fate points, in the sense that they allow bonuses (which they do), power abilities (which they do), and allow narrative control (which they don't do); that last bit is where the need for a more fluid pool comes into play.

Sure, the Force works differently for different characters based on the options you select. But you have to think about that from an in character perspective. No two Jedi are the same, nor does or SHOULD the Force work the same for any two Jedi, to the extent that even a Jedi's own Padawan learner often uses a different fighting style and has different views on the Force. Some lean heavier on Force powers, some lean heavier on their lightsaber, some aren't nearly as good of combatants... And if it doesn't work the same for any two Jedi, it sure isn't going to work the same for a non-Force user. Feat and Talent selections are merely an OOC indicator of the direction your IC training goes. I'd also advise you to pick up the Jedi Training Manual, which includes Lightsaber Manuevers as well to balance out characters that head in that direction. I think this is starting to curtail into the "Does mechanical knowledge harm RP" discussion from not that long ago, though.

Actually, all armor has the potential to interfere with a lightsaber, and some are explicitly designed to. It all comes down to density. The thing is that most characters won't be wearing armor, except for things like flight suits if they need them. And beyond level 4 or 5 wearing armor will most likely INCREASE the odds of you getting hit. This also pertains to earlier in this thread with my mention of how Armor Class works in D&D... Mechanically, most d20 system games abstract the combat so far that they don't care whether you are missed or whether you simply aren't harmed by an attack, they just rule them all a miss. For instance, look how many times Vader gets hit in Ep. V and the blade bounces right off. Armor bonuses to reflex vs. lightsabers are merely accounting for the chance that it wasn't a good swing, or was some kind of glancing blow that maybe would've touched skin, but didn't because of the armor. Overall though, if you play your game around levels 10-15 (where I believe Saga is at it's best) you'll see a net loss to reflex due to armor for most characters.

Perhaps a Plot Points type of pool is something you should be houseruling in, not changing Force Points. The Force affects actions, and grants powers. But to change the narrative is not the point of Force Points. If you do give them that level of power, upping the number of them for everyone, Force sensitive or not is definitely in order.

Dytrrnikl
07-02-2009, 10:00 PM
Actually, all armor has the potential to interfere with a lightsaber, and some are explicitly designed to. It all comes down to density...

Actually, a lightsaber, which is as much a confined beam of energy as it is a concentrated 'vessel' for the force does ignore armor and DR. Although, if the armor is made with cortosis, mandalorian iron, or I believe treated with some kind of Sith alchemical material, then yeah, you got something that can stand up to a lightsaber. If it was simply a matter of density, the blast doors that were closed to keep Qui-gon and Obi-wan out of the control room in The Phantom Menace would have been resistant enough to keep Qui-Gon's lightsaber from sinking in and having any kind of effect at all. However, as for the three substances mentioned above, unless it's legacy era or kotor or some other sith/mandalorains are abundant era, then those substances are pretty rare...at least in the EU material I've seen.

Sascha
07-03-2009, 12:56 AM
Sure, the Force works differently for different characters based on the options you select. But you have to think about that from an in character perspective. No two Jedi are the same, nor does or SHOULD the Force work the same for any two Jedi, to the extent that even a Jedi's own Padawan learner often uses a different fighting style and has different views on the Force. Some lean heavier on Force powers, some lean heavier on their lightsaber, some aren't nearly as good of combatants... And if it doesn't work the same for any two Jedi, it sure isn't going to work the same for a non-Force user. Feat and Talent selections are merely an OOC indicator of the direction your IC training goes. I'd also advise you to pick up the Jedi Training Manual, which includes Lightsaber Manuevers as well to balance out characters that head in that direction. I think this is starting to curtail into the "Does mechanical knowledge harm RP" discussion from not that long ago, though.
Except that it does work the same, using the in-universe (and in-game) explanation; non-Force users unconsciously tap into the Force when they spend the points, while Force users are aware of what they're doing. Training, outlook, and the like don't change the underlying principle that the Force is controlling actions and obeying commands. That Force users have more avenues of channeling that energy doesn't change it, either.

(Largely, this is not so much a conflict on how the Force works, but rather how important differentiation is; I'm not terribly concerned with having variances hard-wired into lists of choices, while the designers seemed to have it explicitly as a goal. It'd be easier on me just to use FATE, but this group is somewhat allergic to non-d20-based games :\)


Actually, all armor has the potential to interfere with a lightsaber, and some are explicitly designed to. It all comes down to density. The thing is that most characters won't be wearing armor, except for things like flight suits if they need them. And beyond level 4 or 5 wearing armor will most likely INCREASE the odds of you getting hit. This also pertains to earlier in this thread with my mention of how Armor Class works in D&D... Mechanically, most d20 system games abstract the combat so far that they don't care whether you are missed or whether you simply aren't harmed by an attack, they just rule them all a miss. For instance, look how many times Vader gets hit in Ep. V and the blade bounces right off. Armor bonuses to reflex vs. lightsabers are merely accounting for the chance that it wasn't a good swing, or was some kind of glancing blow that maybe would've touched skin, but didn't because of the armor. Overall though, if you play your game around levels 10-15 (where I believe Saga is at it's best) you'll see a net loss to reflex due to armor for most characters.
There's already a mechanism in-game that simulates armor being protective: damage reduction. It could have been that all armor was treated in that respect; instead of making it harder to land a hit, the armor absorbs incoming damage. Since lightsabers ignore DR, there'd be no fluff v. crunch conflict. Much like what is seen in the films.

Also, I've always taken the Vader fights not as his armor protecting him, but his ability to turn a serious wound into a lesser one, via training and the Force. In-game, that's what HP, Force powers and Force points all represent. (I'd even argue that it's not really armor, but a mobile iron lung; all the sparks we see are the electronics and his prosthetics taking hits.)


Perhaps a Plot Points type of pool is something you should be houseruling in, not changing Force Points. The Force affects actions, and grants powers. But to change the narrative is not the point of Force Points. If you do give them that level of power, upping the number of them for everyone, Force sensitive or not is definitely in order.
Which was the intent, yes. Giving the player the ability to influence the narrative is already in-place, what with all the other rules; they just didn't go far enough with Force points and what they represent: the influence of the Force on all (re)actions, even seemingly coincidental events. Tracking yet another pool of points (Destiny points included) is, to me, silly, when Force points are perfectly capable of fulfilling that role.

Zzarchov
07-03-2009, 04:14 PM
I have a whole game (piecemeal) and a blog that everyday discusses another rule.

http://zzarchov.blogspot.com

korhal23
07-03-2009, 10:05 PM
To quote the Wookiepedia (all craptacular grammar transferred over unedited, italics added by me for emphasis):
A lightsaber blade was a massless form that neither radiated heat nor expended energy until it came into contact with something solid. The power of the energy blade was so great that it could cut through almost anything, although the speed through which it cut depended on the density of the subject. One important note about lightsaber wounds is that they rarely bleed profusely, even when a limb had been severed. This is because the energy blade cauterized the wound as it passed, and thus even a severe wound did not tend to bleed heavily.
When cutting through dense material, the immense electromagnetic field generated by the arc causes resistance rather than letting solid matter enter and interrupt the arc. This gives the blade a feeling of being solid when immersed in dense material. Rarely, some solid materials can actually pass through the electromagnetic field and short out the arc. Other Electromagnetic energy fields and coherent energy are also repelled by lightsabers' arcs. These include most force fields, blaster bolts, and other lightsaber blades.


As for the Force User/Non-Force User thing, sure, non-Force users can tap into the Force, but not intentionally (so the fact that you as a player even decide when it happens is a bit of a stretch to me), or with nearly the same efficiency or power that a trained Force User can or should be able to. Yes, everyone CAN use the Force, but if it works the same for everyone there's not even a point to Jedi or Sith training.

That said, no one in the Star Wars Universe would ever say "Oh sweet, I can't wait until I finish my next adventure so I can unlock Strong in the Force for myself!" No. But perhaps they spend their all of their downtime training... to jump one inch higher, to lift something one pound heavier, what have you, and thus the player selecting "Strong in the Force" is a natural progression. The problem I have with d20 is that there is no coming into new powers. One day they aren't there, the next day POOF there they are.

It sounds to me, Sascha, like your issue is with d20 system in general. What you're looking for, things like Points that let you control narrative, just don't exist in d20 land. Force Points are logical to me in what they're capable of. For instance, say a character is level 15 and Strong in the Force. Spending ONE Force point (and by then you'd have about a dozen or so) has the potential to earn you bonus of 24 (3d8) which even at that level is phenomenal. The Force has the power to change the narrative as is, because a 24 bonus could turn even the most inevitable failure into a potential success. Beyond that, look at how many Force points Qui-Gon spent to change the destiny of the Universe for all time by causing that die to roll once more... Zero. DC10 Use the Force, with a probably +20 or so bonus. He couldn't fail if he wanted to (1s aren't autofails with skills).

I really think you'd be best served by a game set at at least 15th level. When everyone even remotely important was at least that level in the movie, it's hard to wrap your head around how weak exactly a level 1 character is. I really think that when you put characters at the higher level, you'll see what you're after, such as the Force being able to radically alter narrative as designed.

CEBedford
07-04-2009, 07:01 AM
I have just one, which is a system of quirks/flaws. Players pick 3 character flaws that help define the character's personality and behavior. For every one they can use to create entertainment in game I award bonus XP. This is not just "Ok I farted in public, hand me those XPs." so players are well served to come up with clever ones.

I realized a long time ago that I tend to like games to progress a bit faster than usual but instead of just handing them extra experience I decided to give them a simple way to earn it.

Parzival
07-04-2009, 07:55 PM
Depends on the system.

For GURPS, my houserules are extremely limited.
For 3e, I ban the "jinx" disad, charge an "unusual advantage" to possess the over-powered "katana" skill, nix the "IQ ads to Guns skill" rule, price attributes as per 4e, fix overland travel to something more realistic, and place limitations on the psi system.
(4e has a different set, pretty much limited to "No supernatural or exotic ads or disads without my expressed permission. Yes, I really mean it. And I'm very likely to say no.")

When I was looking at running a 3e D&D game, though, I think they ran four pages.
(I'll try to find the file on my other computer and post them.)
--- Merged from Double Post ---
Upon further review, it seems "about four pages" was quite an exaggeration. 2-1/2 pages is more accurate. Some of them (like the semi-barring of elves and druids) are for world-building considerations, but these are the minority. The file's too big to attach, so I'll cut & paste.

House rules

1) Commoners use the fighters BAB, but retain their documented hp. It is assumed that anybody who uses their single proficient weapon every day of their life, will be skilled enough with it to use it offensively. Defense requires more than a simple knowledge of the weapon, therefore, hp are unchanged. The permissible weapons list for commoners is expanded to include the scythe, trident, light hammer, and handax. If a character possesses levels other than commoner, the commoner BAB only stacks with regard to the commoner’s single weapon proficiency.

2) Ambidexterity is a feat that can *only* be purchased during character creation. The "Ranger", "Paladin" and "Sorcerer" classes are special. If your character does not start with them, they can be very hard to attain.

3) Massed fire. When employed by a coordinated group against a single target, ranged weapons are devastating. Especially against lightly armored foes that depend on agility for protection. For every ranged weapon wielder after the first, two points of AC derived from dexterity bonuses are eliminated from the target. Obviously, this component only affects those characters with dex bonuses to their AC. Further, each two ranged weapon wielders focusing on the same target will increase the critical "threat range" by one for all wielders focusing on the same target. This is cumulative. If the critical range exceeds the wielder's actual "to hit" target number range, the target number range is adjusted a like amount. This rule is restricted to foes within 1 size category of the wielders, and wielders of the same or similar weapons. Using this tactic requires all wielders to act on the same initiative phase. (This is a virtual feat automatically granted to most PC races and/or classes.)

4) Melee. The "cannot be flanked" advantage is trumped by two plus ˝ dexterity modifier attackers. (Fractions round to the defender’s advantage.) Each two melee weapon wielders focusing on the same target will increase the critical "threat range" by one for all melee weapon wielders focusing on the same target. This is cumulative. If the critical range exceeds the wielder's actual "to hit" target number range, the target number range is adjusted a like amount. These rules are limited to creatures within one size category of the target, and wielders of the same, or similar weapons. Flails, two handed slashing/bludgeoning weapons (with the exception of polearms designed for the purpose) and double weapons may not be used in these “massed” attack tactics. (This is a virtual feat automatically granted to most PC races and/or classes.) In melee combat, height differentials are very important. The “uphill” combatant receives cover ranging from 25% to 100%, depending on the severity of the grade, and the relative size and reach of the combatant’s weapons. (100% scenario: You are armed with a shortsword, and are at the bottom of an open pit. Hostile spearmen are looking down at you from all sides. It’s a good idea to try and avoid this type of situation.)

5) In combat, changing positions (standing to prone, prone to kneeling, kneeling to standing, mounted to standing, standing to mounted, mounted to prone) is a move-equivalent action that provokes attacks of opportunity. This occurs even if the change in position was forced or unintentional. (This does not give a tripping character an extra attack. That character is busy with his action during the time of the vulnerability.) Going from prone to standing is an automatic “double-move” action, but can be reduced to a single “move equivalent” action with a successful “Tumble” check (DC 10) failure results in remaining prone, but still provoking attacks of opportunity.

6) Any successful attack against a sleeping, paralyzed, held, bound, or prone target is automatically considered a "threat" for a critical strike. Even if such an attack does not normally require a “to hit” roll, one must be rolled to determine if a critical strike was achieved.

7) Raise dead is a ninth level spell, costing xp as a "miracle" spell. Resurrection and True Resurrection do not exist. To attempt to revive a corpse that does not fall within the "raise dead" guidelines is to invite calamity. (As per an overreaching “Wish”.)

8) Healing spells convert "normal" damage into "subdual" damage, which heals at the normal rate of 1hp/level/hour.

9) Falls of over 40 feet are AUTOMATICALLY incapacitating. Falls of over 100 feet are AUTOMATICALLY fatal. Mitigating circumstances (such as water, and special/magical abilities) may affect this rule.

10) The blunt end of polearms, spears and tridents may be used as a double weapons with the purchase of an exotic weapon feat "non-conforming style". Use of this feat is a move equivalent action to alter grip. While using this feat, reach normally granted by these weapons is negated. Discontinuing use of this feat is a move equivalent action. Weapons used in this manner are not made for the purpose, and are more vulnerable to sunder attacks. Weapons used in this matter cannot be used for “massed” attacks as described above. The blunt end of these weapons does damage as a quarterstaff.

11) Eastern weapons, whether arabic, turkish, indian or oriental are prohibited. "Silly" weapons are also prohibited. If there is any question in your mind about what constitutes "silly", consider how likely a wielder of the weapon is to hit himself with it, or consult the GM.

12) The monk class does not exist. The feat "deflect arrows" also does not exist.

13) Damage dealt by club, staff, as well as the blunt end of polearms, tridents, and spears, has a 50% chance of being subdual damage. Critical hits and magically enhanced weapons always cause "normal" type damage.

14) Elf is a restricted race, not normally open to PC status. If you wish to play an elf (or a kobold, goblin, orc, or any "non-standard" race or template), consult the GM. Druid is a restricted class, not normally open to PC status. If you wish to play a druid, consult the GM.

15) Character creation is accomplished by the standard point buy method. With a 25 point pool, as described in the DMG. (If there are any questions, as always, consult the GM.)

16) The optional combat rules (instant-kill crit option, and death by massive damage) are the default system for this game. Instant-kill critical strikes require two rolls of a natural 20, regardless of modifiers to the critical range. Additionally, the variant critical success/failure rules for skill checks are the default system for this game.

17) Any class, spell, equipment, or clerical domain not published in the Player's handbook will be reviewed by the GM on a case-by-case basis before admission to the game.

18) Barring extraordinary mitigating circumstances, killing other PCs is strictly forbidden. Don't do it.

19) XP is gained by overcoming challenges and advancing the story. Additional XP can be earned by excellent role-playing, entertaining the GM, and meeting character goals. These will be distributed after a major conflict is resolved, or at the end of every third session, whichever comes first. At the end of every session, the players will cast a secret ballot for the “best” role-player of that session. The GM will count the ballots, and award 100XP to the winner. This “bonus” XP is applied immediately.

20) 1” hex grid will be the standard layout of the battlemat. With 1” representing 5’ unless otherwise described.

21) The placement of a “burst” spell centering on a creature or object is automatic, unless stated otherwise in the spell description. The placement of such a spell centered in an unoccupied space is not. To simulate this, a d12 will be dropped from a height of at least three inches by the casting player onto the spot (on the battlemat) he intends to “target” with the spell. Where the die ends up, is where the spell is actually centered. (Standard deviation is generally about 1 ˝” on the battleboard. Or about 8’ scale. Pretty amazingly accurate considering the difficulty most people have in judging distance.)

22) Only Clerics and Wizards get literacy for free. Other classes must use skill points to buy it.

23) Prone or kneeling humanoids can be flanked with only 90 degrees of separation between attackers, rather than the standard 180 degrees.

24) Critical misses (a roll of 1 on a d20) in combat invoke attacks of opportunity.

25) There is a soft cap on levels after total character level 10. At this point, advancement becomes geometric. To reach TCL 11, you have to earn as much total experience as it took you to reach TCL 10. To reach TCL 12 will require you to earn as much total experience as it took you to reach TCL 11. The sequence continues in a like fashion. NPCs of such high levels are almost unheard of, and magical items (rings, staffs, etc.) that must be created by such a high level wizard or sorcerer are extremely rare and valuable.

26) Mithril bypasses silver DR. Admantium bypasses cold iron DR.

27) The Bane weapon enhancement remains a +2 enhancement, and automatically bypasses all DR when attacking it’s specified foe.

28) A whisper is a perfectly adequate vocal component for spells of the illusion and enchantment schools. Both schools are geared towards casting spells inconspicuously in social settings, and the official rules do not reflect this.

TheRageOfGaia
07-05-2009, 03:39 PM
CEBedford -

I like the quirks rule, though its a standard rule in GURPS, I have also used it with White Wolf and d20. It is definitely one of the best character building rules/tools/skills/whatever I've ever come across and here's why.

A lot of actors (and that's what role-playing really is) tend to internalize their characters. This happens all the time in role-playing environments, such as: my fighters family was killed by gnolls and now I hates them. Maybe this will show up in the game, when the party fights gnolls, or if somebody asks, but it's an internal characteristic. Quirks like "always says X," "always wears X," "uses colorful metaphors," "is always chewing gum" etc. project an external character, which means that the audience (the rest of the group) gets to see an actual character, and will then be more interested in the internal aspects.

To illustrate, think of the movies. There are two types; those that are driven by a character and those that are driven by an actor. For example, I like Will Smith movies, but Will Smith always acts like Will Smith. Anthony Hopkins, however, does not always act like Hannibal Lecter (I hope). Christian Bale's "Batman voice," Darth Vader, Dustin Hoffman in Rain Man, and most of Brad Pitt's movies exemplify this. For example, Brad Pitt's character in Snatch, and his character in Burn After Reading are very very different.

There's nothing wrong with internalized role-playing, afterall, this is a game and a hobby, for the sake of fun, not performance. However, externalizing character traits makes for a more rewarding experience.

Bearfoot_Adam
07-08-2009, 09:15 PM
I've never really house ruled, I will however use variants from time to time.

Chrisg
07-09-2009, 01:38 AM
for a nat 1, we had more dire consequences happen than just miss.

If nat 20 gives you something cool, nat 1 should give you something uncool.

In 1e, we rolled 1d6. No matter the roll, the opponent got a free atk on you. On a 1-2, you fumbled your weapon, but recover. On a 3-4, you threw your weapon in a random direction. On a 5-6, you hit yourself, roll d20 to see if you hit AC, then roll dam if hit AC.

In 4e, trying something similar with my new group, but it only provokes an opportunity atk on a 5-6, if not using a weapon 3-4 dazes you until end of you next turn, and a 1-2 you lose a healing surge (analogous to hitting one's self).

This was one of our long standing house rules too, 3rd ed. :biggrin:
--- Merged from Double Post ---

I have just one, which is a system of quirks/flaws. Players pick 3 character flaws that help define the character's personality and behavior. For every one they can use to create entertainment in game I award bonus XP. This is not just "Ok I farted in public, hand me those XPs." so players are well served to come up with clever ones.

I realized a long time ago that I tend to like games to progress a bit faster than usual but instead of just handing them extra experience I decided to give them a simple way to earn it.

We had this rule too in all of our campaigns and it really is a lot of fun to role play them out.:biggrin:

nijineko
07-09-2009, 02:55 AM
I stick with the Light Side being a use of the Force that is in harmony with life - ie. uses that do not harm others or other life forms, while the Dark Side is a use of the Force that is out of harmony with life - ie. using the Force to harm others, either directly (as with Force Lightning, Forec Slam, Force Grip, and so forth) or indirectly (as Palpatine did by manipulating and twisting Anakin). It's a flavor thing, and one that I know not many agree with.

but in our current order, death is in harmony with life. the growth of trees kills off undergrowth, and breaks the rocks underneath. The water supports lives by the trillions, but also breaks rocks and kills with deadly storms and floods. you kill insects almost every time you step into grass. the jedi temple being built destroyed the homes of some animals, not to mention the city it was in. trees will shun and lean away from a tree that is sick. animals eat each other. in the end, the plants and maggots eat everything else. all of this could be considered harm from a point of view. but it is all in harmony with life as a whole. life forms give way to other life forms. your flavor seems to be ignoring some aspects of harmony. on the other hand, our current order is not the only way to live, either.

it is possible that the force might find it more harmonious to prevent, or even destroy, a few individuals who would otherwise destroy thousands of lives, than to allow the thousands of lives to perish.

for the record, i do not disagree with your core idea of the clear black/white line... more that i disagree with some of your definitions, and possibly where that line is being drawn. i too happen to believe that in real life good and evil is as clearly defined as black and white. humans are not always able to see it clearly. too close, or too far in many cases.

tesral
07-09-2009, 07:37 AM
for the record, i do not disagree with your core idea of the clear black/white line... more that i disagree with some of your definitions, and possibly where that line is being drawn. i too happen to believe that in real life good and evil is as clearly defined as black and white. humans are not always able to see it clearly. too close, or too far in many cases.

Be it harm none....

berginyon
07-09-2009, 10:07 AM
Helm's in my game gives you a +1 to yo9ur armor class.

DMMike
07-10-2009, 02:18 PM
Helm's in my game gives you a +1 to yo9ur armor class.

I find that lack of a helm gives me, as DM, a good excuse for critical hits to land on the noggin.
I'd like to say that lack of a helm increases an enemy's threat range by 1, but some ACs aren't calculated with helms anyway, so that would be too complicated.

Norvilion
07-10-2009, 11:47 PM
I GM'ed for the first time last spring, and as one who usually played in the other end I knew that rolling initial stats could be a pain, and usually ended up with some people significantly more powerful than others. I decided to create a modified point buy system

Basically modifies had to add up to +8, or 38 attribute points total. You could only go up to a +4 in any one stat before racial modifiers and could only gain a maximum of +2 extra points for taking negative. main build I used for Villans of the Week (tm) was 18,18,14,10,8,8

Seems a bit powerful in hindsight, but much better than campaign before that were our characters ranged between +6 and +15

AnotherShadow
07-21-2009, 12:17 PM
I have a home made karma system for dnd 3.0 and 3.5, as well as i have a custom magic system for call of cthulhu (6th) for people who use magic outside of the mythos, as well as 4.0 grapple rules for 3.5 dnd thats all that i can think off the top of my head.

cplmac
07-23-2009, 10:16 AM
Of course this is using 2E for my games. When it comes to the use of spells, I do like to have the magic users have to relearn the spell after it is used. Now there are some 1st level spells that I give them to know all the time, as a benefit of the time they have spent in learning their craft. As for the clerics, and those that use cleric spells, I don't limit them to having to relearn a spell after it is used. My reason is that the spells that they know are granted to them by the diety that they follow. However, if they use the same spell several times during the same encounter, there is an increasing chance of the adversary being able to make saving throws against that particular spell. If they would by chance do something that is in opposition to their particular diety, they find that they can't use the spell(s) and now have to make ammends to the diety in order to regain the ability. Currently, I have not had the people that are playing cleric using spells characters run into this problem. Then again, one never knows what is going to happen during any given game session.

tesral
07-23-2009, 10:22 AM
At this point I pretty much have a home brew game.

Skills (http://phoenixinn.iwarp.com/fantasy/fantpdf/05_Manual_Skills.pdf). I give a lot more. 5 per level, every class. Rogue abilities are class features again. I restructured the skills themselves to better reflect my world.

Ishcumbeebeeda
07-28-2009, 03:02 PM
There just aren't any rules that I am aware of that give you a bonus of completely avoiding combat and being as defensive as possible. The fighting defensively assumes you are still going to make an attack. What about if you are just interested in saving your own hide and forgoing any attacks? That's why I introduced it.

TOTAL DEFENSE
You can simply defend your self as a standard action. You get a +4 dodge bonus to your AC for 1 round. Your AC improves at the start of this action, so it helps you against any attacks of opportunity you provoke during the round. You can’t combine total defense with fighting defensively or with the benefit of the Combat Expertise feat, since using either of these tactics requires you to declare an attack or full attack. You can’t make attacks of opportunity while using total defense. If you have 5 or more ranks in Tumble, you gain a +6 dodge bonus to AC when using total defense.

That's right out of the D&D 3.5 Rules Compendium. I'm a bit of a rules lawyer, but I guess I'm a CN version cuz I only care if it affects me, lol.
--- Merged from Double Post ---
Kept reading after I posted before and realized I shouldn't have let my eagerness to share knowledge overrule me... Someone already posted about total defense. Sorry.

Azar
07-28-2009, 03:26 PM
In my 3.5 game I use disable device instead of open lock to well,open locks its easier.Also I make my players roll 4d6 three times and each one must have at least a 15 and a total ability modifier of +3 or they reroll that set again.

outrider
07-28-2009, 07:30 PM
house rules- hp at 1st level is your con + con modifier. Con 15 +2 mod =17 hp.

non class skills only cost one but are still limited as to level.

Training for feats and new spell levels. I have always done that for any type of training. It allows the pcs to meet new npcs, interact and interject potiential plot hooks.

I still limit races for character types.

Dytrrnikl
07-29-2009, 12:12 AM
...For instance, say a character is level 15 and Strong in the Force. Spending ONE Force point (and by then you'd have about a dozen or so) has the potential to earn you bonus of 24 (3d8) which even at that level is phenomenal. The Force has the power to change the narrative as is, because a 24 bonus could turn even the most inevitable failure into a potential success...

Ummm, not to nitpick, but this seem to be a bit of a throw back to how FPs were handled with WotC's first two incarnations of Star Wars. We've been running FPs where when you roll multiple die, you pick the best of the rolled die. I don't recall seeing that the die were totalled from the core rulebook.


Of course, I houseruled that when FPs are spent in a round you choose between applying it to all defenses for one round or all task resolution rolls for the round.

MortonStromgal
07-29-2009, 12:53 PM
Shadowrun 1-3e We always only went against the hardest of the systems in the matrix runs. If you beat that you could do anything you wanted. Rather than testing against subsystems or nodes

Tony Misfeldt
07-30-2009, 01:42 AM
Didn't I already start this thread on the D&D board? Anyway, here are some of my homebrew rules.

XP Distrubution Cards:
These are cards, each one designated to a different player. It breaks down the players XP by means of earning it (Combat, Role Playing, Problem Solving, etc). It also tells them about any XP penalties from The Paul Rule, The Peter Rule, and The Alfredo Rule (explained below). This allows the players to know where their playing strengths are and where they need work.

The Paul Rule:
The Paul Rules penalizes players who blatantly refuse to participate in ROLE playing situations, b***h and moan about having to talk to NPCs, playing personalities/alignments opposite to what the player wrote on his character sheet or told the DM. XP bonuses for good role playing range from 100 XP to 200 XP, so the penalties for refusing to role play is 200 XP to 400 XP. The penalties are cumilative so a PC could be 1000 XP or more in the hole every gaming session.

The Peter Rule:
The Peter Rule is meant as a deturrant to players from chronic tardiness. If we all agree to a specific date and time, and you can't make it on time, just let us know. At the time we agree to meet, if you know you can't make it on time, let us know. If you weren't going to be late but something came up at the last minute, call us and let us know. If you show up late constantly, you'll lose 1000 XP from your tally.

The Alfredo Rule:
The Alfredo Rule is very much like the Peter Rule. It's designed to deture players from chronic absenteeism. If you agree to arrive at a certain day and time and just don't show up without letting us know, you'll be penalized 5000 XP. Just let us know and there's no penalty, but just not show up and you're penalized.

Vocal Component Rule:
In order to cast any spell which has a vocal component, the player must come up with a vocal component and actually say it in order for the spell to work (abracadabra, hocus pocus, abra-peanutbutter-sandwiches, rhyming couplets, etc).

Critical Hits:
Critical hits are made at a natural 18 to 20, but must be made by a factor of 5. Thus if you need to roll a natural 17 just to hit and you roll a natural 20, it's just a hit. If you need to roll a natural 13 to hit and you roll a natural 18, it's a critical.

Critical Effects:
If you roll a critical hit, the target then gets to roll a Save vs Reflex. Success means he only takes double damage. Failure means he suffers a critical effect. The DM rolls dice on an effects chart. The dice rolled depends on the size of the weapon vs size of the target. Effects range from minor bleeding (1d2 hp/turn), to major bleeding (1d2 hp/round), to severe bleeding (10 to 60% of total hp/round), to fatal wound (instant death).

gajenx
07-30-2009, 08:53 AM
So how many players do you ever get to be casters then Tony Misfeldt? If each spell needs its own wording, that means everytime one is cast without a silent spell feat the player has to say the words to the spell or prayer?

Though I also know I would never gain levels in your games since I am chronically late by like 10 minutes it seems.

Valdar
07-30-2009, 10:52 AM
I'm still trying to stick to RAW, but here are a few that I've been considering:

--Religion should be based on WIS. All divine characters have WIS as a needed stat, and none of them have INT. As written, INT-based characters will typically have a better untrained Religion score than a Divine character, even when the Divine character trains it. To balance it out, Dungeoneering would become INT-based.

--Minions need to not be killed by auto-damage- they should only be killed if you overcome their defenses. Things like Cleave, Lightning Weapon and Rod of Reaving can take out minions without an attack roll, which is kind of cheap.

korhal23
07-30-2009, 11:15 AM
Ummm, not to nitpick, but this seem to be a bit of a throw back to how FPs were handled with WotC's first two incarnations of Star Wars. We've been running FPs where when you roll multiple die, you pick the best of the rolled die. I don't recall seeing that the die were totalled from the core rulebook.


Of course, I houseruled that when FPs are spent in a round you choose between applying it to all defenses for one round or all task resolution rolls for the round.

You're right, I just looked it up. I guess that means my Saga group was doing that wrong. Ha, well then I guess totaling them was a house rule of ours lol

tesral
07-30-2009, 12:49 PM
Didn't I already start this thread on the D&D board? Anyway, here are some of my homebrew rules.

XP Distrubution Cards:
These are cards, each one designated to a different player. It breaks down the players XP by means of earning it (Combat, Role Playing, Problem Solving, etc). It also tells them about any XP penalties from The Paul Rule, The Peter Rule, and The Alfredo Rule (explained below). This allows the players to know where their playing strengths are and where they need work.
.

I ditched quarterly reviews when I left the working world. I don't need them in my gaming.

I have a simple test for any home brew rule. Does the rule contribute more play value than it's added complexity requires. If the answer is "no" the rule does not get included. A rule must either improve playablity or it must simplfy the game itself.

My house rule on XP is that it is the gestalt of the session with goals achieved a major part of the reward, zero math. I reward a percentage of an average level. by the chart I have. I have mature players, Peter Paul and Alfredo are not invited, unless Peter and Paul are bring Fettuccine Alfredo. I don't give performance reviews. People get eough of that at work.

Tony Misfeldt
07-31-2009, 05:32 AM
So how many players do you ever get to be casters then Tony Misfeldt? If each spell needs its own wording, that means everytime one is cast without a silent spell feat the player has to say the words to the spell or prayer?

Though I also know I would never gain levels in your games since I am chronically late by like 10 minutes it seems.



People who just want to sit and roll dice tend to not like playing spellcasters in my games. Those who actually make the effort to give their characters unique personalities, speak in character (in short ROLE play), find it adds to the whole role playing experience and realism so they rather enjoy it. By the way, feats don't exist in my games, only skills.

As for The Peter Rule, I don't penalize people for being 5 or 10 minutes late. But if you make us wait for you for an hour or more, that costs you 1000 XP. We would constantly arrange to start the game at 7:00pm. Peter would always agree, then on game night he'd show up at 9:00 or later. That's the type of behavior The Peter Rule is meant to discourage.

tesral
07-31-2009, 06:49 AM
People who just want to sit and roll dice tend to not like playing spellcasters in my games. Those who actually make the effort to give their characters unique personalities, speak in character (in short ROLE play), find it adds to the whole role playing experience and realism so they rather enjoy it. By the way, feats don't exist in my games, only skills.

I always create a unique personality and role-play, but I consider the idea of "verbal components" silly and cumbersome. Do you make fighters speak the name of their fighting maneuvers before using them Dragonball Z style?

It's one more burden on a class that has enough bookkeeping. as it is.

gajenx
07-31-2009, 09:31 AM
People who just want to sit and roll dice tend to not like playing spellcasters in my games. Those who actually make the effort to give their characters unique personalities, speak in character (in short ROLE play), find it adds to the whole role playing experience and realism so they rather enjoy it. By the way, feats don't exist in my games, only skills.

As for The Peter Rule, I don't penalize people for being 5 or 10 minutes late. But if you make us wait for you for an hour or more, that costs you 1000 XP. We would constantly arrange to start the game at 7:00pm. Peter would always agree, then on game night he'd show up at 9:00 or later. That's the type of behavior The Peter Rule is meant to discourage.


If you have no feats in your world then what is the point of being a fighter? They are feat characters to show the trained fighter verse the haphazard warrior. Without feats you are no better than the NPC warrior class. Or do you just no have the fighter class as well.

AnotherShadow
07-31-2009, 02:56 PM
I realize how lame my last post was. Here is the fix and expansion.

DND

I have a home made karma system for dnd 3.0 and 3.5, its kind of a luck system allowing for things to go worse or better for your character, doing good deeds gets you bonus good points going bad deeds gets you bonus negative points, depending on which is higher depends on what can happen to your character. The good and bad deeds depend upon your deity if no deity.

I used the 4.0 grapple rules in place of 3.5. It made things go easier in combat and made more sense.

Call of Cthulhu

I created a custom magic system that is for use for players who operate outside the mythos, but the spells do not affect with the mythos. This works for attacking the unexpected people that are getting to close to your investigations taking out doors etc etc. It mirrors the Sorcery magic from basic roleplaying, i didnt know about it before making these rules lol.

OLD TSR games

I have taken away Thaco and converted it to AC as well as i have simplified the character creation, it depends on the game lol.

Mega Traveller

I ran star wars in this rule set so i made light sabers as well as i house ruled movement since it was not so clear. As well as i house ruled the robot creation rules to make them more star warsish even when not playing a star wars game.

Clerical_Errer
07-31-2009, 03:13 PM
For 4e I added a disarm feature: Disarm~ With a few calculated flicks of your weapon you quickly disarm your opponent. Standard action. attack: player's dex vs. opponent's d20 roll+dex mod. Hit: opponent's weapon lands five feet away disarming the opponent.
Miss: Opponent get's an opportunity attack against you. Not actually sure if there is a way to disarm in 4e but I'm pretty sure there isn't.

korhal23
07-31-2009, 04:51 PM
Disarm is a Level 17 fighter power, Exorcism of Steel. Rogues have something similar, but I can't think of it's name. It should not, however, be a main ability. It is NOT an easy thing to do to someone, and being disarmed is a harsher and harsher penalty the more time wears on and the higher leveled the player is. Sure, a player might miss his +1 to attacks at low levels, or maybe his +2... but when weapons start getting up around +5 and +6, being disarmed is a terribly harsh penalty. Combine that with the fact that someone else (likely an enemy if they aren't retarded) is going to pick up your weapon (doesn't provoke an opportunity attack anymore) and you are now worthless until the enemy with your sword dies by someone else's hand, essentially, if you don't have a backup weapon (and who would? In 4E all magic items are Returning)

Now, consider looking at fantasy and sci-fi, and really action type movies and books... how often does someone get disarmed? Once? Maybe? If you want to disarm someone for story purposes, fine, but it's kinda cheese territory if used more than once a fight or so.

Pick any level 30 weapon based class... fighter, swordmage, rogue... now pick any mob that they might face. Now, try to justify the use of any power except disarm. You can't do it.

Heck, you don't even drop your sword when you're stunned, helpless, unconscious, or any other condition anymore... it just doesn't have a prominent place in the high-magic action adventure of 4E D&D, and rightly so.

Tamburlain
07-31-2009, 05:16 PM
I'm toying with the idea of allowing players in Labyrinth Lord (the Moldvay B/X retroclone) to "burn" two kinds of experience points, one set of x-points based on the traditional old-school D&D model (i.e., relative to class) and the second set of x-points based on a player-chosen "ethos" to substitute for a given character's alignment during game play. This is not really new but is a GM technique loosely inspired by the Burning Wheel system. There are a couple of other rpgs that I might implement this technique with, too, as a means of ceding some measure of narrative control to players who can play to their chosen ethos effectively.

Clerical_Errer
07-31-2009, 07:44 PM
Disarm is a Level 17 fighter power, Exorcism of Steel. Rogues have something similar, but I can't think of it's name. It should not, however, be a main ability. It is NOT an easy thing to do to someone, and being disarmed is a harsher and harsher penalty the more time wears on and the higher leveled the player is. Sure, a player might miss his +1 to attacks at low levels, or maybe his +2... but when weapons start getting up around +5 and +6, being disarmed is a terribly harsh penalty. Combine that with the fact that someone else (likely an enemy if they aren't retarded) is going to pick up your weapon (doesn't provoke an opportunity attack anymore) and you are now worthless until the enemy with your sword dies by someone else's hand, essentially, if you don't have a backup weapon (and who would? In 4E all magic items are Returning)

Now, consider looking at fantasy and sci-fi, and really action type movies and books... how often does someone get disarmed? Once? Maybe? If you want to disarm someone for story purposes, fine, but it's kinda cheese territory if used more than once a fight or so.

Pick any level 30 weapon based class... fighter, swordmage, rogue... now pick any mob that they might face. Now, try to justify the use of any power except disarm. You can't do it.

Heck, you don't even drop your sword when you're stunned, helpless, unconscious, or any other condition anymore... it just doesn't have a prominent place in the high-magic action adventure of 4E D&D, and rightly so.

Whoa chillax prick face, its just if someone wanted to attempt it as a player. Way to flame for no reason at all. Didn't look like you posted anything about a house rule at all on your post.

korhal23
07-31-2009, 08:02 PM
Whoa chillax prick face, its just if someone wanted to attempt it as a player. Way to flame for no reason at all. Didn't look like you posted anything about a house rule at all on your post.

And if someone wants to attempt it as a player, it's built into the game, as a fighter or rogue power. Probably others too, I don't have Divine Power yet so I can't say for certain that Avengers or Paladins don't have a disarm.

I didn't flame anything. I merely told you where to look to see that your assumption that there isn't a disarm is incorrect... not meant to flame, only to inform. I didn't mean anything by it, I promise, and I'm sorry if it sounded like a flame. If you think it's a necessary house rule go for it, tis the beauty of RPGs. But I think it isn't one, and was merely explaining my thought process for why a disarm action is unnecessary.

My advice though? At least make it where they're attacking, say Reflex + 5 or 10 though... to signify just how hard it is to knock the weapon out of someone who's even remotely competent's hands.

I wouldn't counter-flame though. I've posted plenty of times in this thread, tyvm. I'd appreciate an apology.

Tony Misfeldt
07-31-2009, 08:18 PM
If you have no feats in your world then what is the point of being a fighter? They are feat characters to show the trained fighter verse the haphazard warrior. Without feats you are no better than the NPC warrior class. Or do you just no have the fighter class as well.



Some feats have been converted into skills, others have gone bye-bye. Weapon Specialization, for example, is a skill. As are Mounted Combat, and some of the other combat feats. Cleave, Great Cleave, Improved Great Cleave, etc, all don't exist. You want to learn them? Spend the skill points.

Dytrrnikl
08-01-2009, 08:21 AM
It is NOT an easy thing to do to someone, and being disarmed is a harsher and harsher penalty the more time wears on and the higher leveled the player is. Sure, a player might miss his +1 to attacks at low levels, or maybe his +2... but when weapons start getting up around +5 and +6, being disarmed is a terribly harsh penalty. Combine that with the fact that someone else (likely an enemy if they aren't retarded) is going to pick up your weapon (doesn't provoke an opportunity attack anymore) and you are now worthless until the enemy with your sword dies by someone else's hand, essentially, if you don't have a backup weapon (and who would?)

Personally, I've never seen disarm as being an increasingly harsh penalty. Most of the games I've played in, disarm or attempts to disarm are pretty much something that takes place in a lot of encounters...either by the villains or the players as a way to find an edge in combat. Usually, when the disarm would occur, then the weapon would get kicked as far away from its former wielder as possible. I can only speak for the games I've run or played, even mages carry at least two weapons - stereotypical quarterstaff and a dagger...and that was before disarms became a common tactic.



...In 4E all magic items are Returning...<snip>Heck, you don't even drop your sword when you're stunned, helpless, unconscious, or any other condition anymore...

These are two tidbits of 4E that don't sit well with me, the latter more than the former. I can almost forgive the magic items all having returning, it's magic afterall. However, not dropping your weapon for any condition, for me, that's cheesy. However, it does fit with the style of gameplay that is being encouraged by 4E - super-powered WoW style play. However, it's a style of play that is not conducive to gritty games.

korhal23
08-01-2009, 09:02 AM
Personally, I've never seen disarm as being an increasingly harsh penalty. Most of the games I've played in, disarm or attempts to disarm are pretty much something that takes place in a lot of encounters...either by the villains or the players as a way to find an edge in combat. Usually, when the disarm would occur, then the weapon would get kicked as far away from its former wielder as possible. I can only speak for the games I've run or played, even mages carry at least two weapons - stereotypical quarterstaff and a dagger...and that was before disarms became a common tactic.




These are two tidbits of 4E that don't sit well with me, the latter more than the former. I can almost forgive the magic items all having returning, it's magic afterall. However, not dropping your weapon for any condition, for me, that's cheesy. However, it does fit with the style of gameplay that is being encouraged by 4E - a high magic action adventure. However, it's a style of play that is not conducive to gritty games.

Fixed.

All I'm saying is that for 4E, there isn't much point to carrying a second weapon and that a Disarm mechanic as a standard tactic isn't in the spirit of 4E's default feel.

You're absolutely right, it's not conducive to gritty games. That's like saying Call of Cthulhu isn't conducive to high-magic action adventure... of course not. But that doesn't mean you CAN'T.

You want grit? Cut healing surges in half. Limit the number of encounter powers they can use each combat. Give monsters better recharges on their powers. Have the players in combats 3-4 levels above them. It can be done, I promise.

Like I've said before, my friends and I used to play older editions of D&D with a lot of the grit removed... 4E was a leap in the direction our games already were going. But if we could do that, I'm pretty sure you can inject all the grit you want back in to 4E.

http://www.dungeonmastering.com/gaming-life/dm-dilemma-my-party-kicks-too-much-ass

Tony Misfeldt
08-02-2009, 02:29 AM
I always create a unique personality and role-play, but I consider the idea of "verbal components" silly and cumbersome. Do you make fighters speak the name of their fighting maneuvers before using them Dragonball Z style?

It's one more burden on a class that has enough bookkeeping. as it is.



I don't watch Dragonball-Z. As for fighters, if it's a simple case of "I hit the orc with my ax" then that's all they really have to say. If they want to do something spectacular, like disarming an opponent, carving a Z in the seat of their pants, slicing their corotted artery (spelling?) So precisely that the blood makes a whistling sound when it pumps out the wound, stapling their sleave to the wall with a perfectly placed arrow, etc. That stuff requires some description.

tesral
08-02-2009, 08:37 AM
I don't watch Dragonball-Z. As for fighters, if it's a simple case of "I hit the orc with my ax" then that's all they really have to say. If they want to do something spectacular, like disarming an opponent, carving a Z in the seat of their pants, slicing their corotted artery (spelling?) So precisely that the blood makes a whistling sound when it pumps out the wound, stapling their sleeve to the wall with a perfectly placed arrow, etc. That stuff requires some description.

So what is wrong with "I cast fireball at the Orcs 50 feet away."?

What is the added play value here? I think that if you have to "make" the Players use these things then they are not adding play value at all, simple increasing the bookkeeping on the spell casting classes that already have more bookkeeping that most classes.

Truthfully, the more house rules that are for the players, not the characters, that a game has the less attractive that game looks to me. It smacks of a Gamemaster with more than a streak of tyrany in his soul.

Tony Misfeldt
08-04-2009, 04:36 PM
COMELINESS: Comeliness is a 7th stat determining a characters physical beauty. It is related to, but seperate from, Charisma. It got its start in 1st edition from the book Unearthed Arcana. I just never stopped using it. Characters with a COM of 14 or more are so beautiful, characters with a low WIS have to roll a saving throw or become fascinated (as per the 1st level spell). The numbers might have to change to adapt this rule to d20 terms, but here it is in it's original version (more or less, I don't have my books with me so I'm going from memory).

Racial Adjustments:

Gold Elf, Moon Elf, or Drow Elf = +2

Half Elf, Sea Elf, or Wood Elf = +1

Human or Halfling = 0

Dwarf or Gnome = -1

Half Orc = -3

Charisma Adjustments:

19+ = +5

18 = +3

16-17 = +2

14-15 = +1

9-13 = 0

7-8 = -1

5-6 = -2

4 = -3

3 or less = -5

Ther's more, a bunch of stuff about the effects of high Comeliness on those with low Wisdom, but unfortunately I can't remember enough to write it all out now. Generally, the higher the COM the higher your WIS has to be to keep from being fascinated (highest I think is a WIS that's 75% of the COM). I'll make adjustments later.

Tony Misfeldt
08-05-2009, 12:13 PM
So what is wrong with "I cast fireball at the Orcs 50 feet away."?

What is the added play value here? I think that if you have to "make" the Players use these things then they are not adding play value at all, simple increasing the bookkeeping on the spell casting classes that already have more bookkeeping that most classes.

Truthfully, the more house rules that are for the players, not the characters, that a game has the less attractive that game looks to me. It smacks of a Gamemaster with more than a streak of tyrany in his soul.



What is the added play value for saying "I role a diplomacy check and a fast talking check. What do I learn?" Isn't it better to have the players actually ask the necessary questions of the NPCs rather than just roll dice?

tesral
08-05-2009, 02:22 PM
Racial Adjustments:


That part I never understood. One is assuming that the Human standard of beauty is the universal one, and that some species are more attractive to Humans than Humans. And that races like Dwarfs find other species more attractive to them than there own.

I don't disagree with the general idea of racial adjustments, but they should not be applied to the character, but on an encounter by encounter basis. Use a matrix showing each races' adjustment for other races, apply as required.

Each race should see its own kind as the most attractive as the general rule. At best another race might seem no less attractive. This is not to say that a given player cannot declare that Joe Human thinks that Elves rock and will consider all Elves as +2 Com when encountered. or that John Dwarf is a bigot, and will mark down any other race an additional 2 points for that reason.

Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. One reason I never adopted Comeliness is the difficulty in assuming a universal standard of beauty.





What is the added play value for saying "I role a diplomacy check and a fast talking check. What do I learn?" Isn't it better to have the players actually ask the necessary questions of the NPCs rather than just roll dice?

http://kingjbible.com/clearrectangle.gif

"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven" --Ecclesiastes 3 :1

One thing is not the other. Diplomacy is a role playing situation by its nature. It is always preferred that one play it out.

Casting spells is a different situation. I'm not trying to actually cast spells. Do you make the fighters beat on something for however many real rounds? Do you make them actually wear armor to the game? Do you have locks for the thieves to pick?

Added play value for the additional bookkeeping has not been demonstrated.

korhal23
08-05-2009, 04:46 PM
I agree tes... I made the same point earlier when Comeliness was mentioned by someone else... if there's more than one race in the game, it's a BS stat.

I'm also in agreement concerning the verbal components. No one but the basest, newest roleplayers would slog through a conversation with "I'm going to intimidate, then diplomacy, then Julie how about you seduce?" No. A thousand times no. You merely roleplay through a situation, and when it sounds like a player's tone lines up with the appropriate skill check you have them roll it, usually with a bonus or penalty based on the strength or weakness of their threat/offer/bargain/hotness.

If you don't make your fighter scream some exclamation, or perform a kata with a fake weapon to illustrate his attack, then making the wizard speak a verbal component is silly and unfair. Besides, what's to say it's even something pronounceable? It could be an ancient, dead (also: TOTALLY FAKE) language, it could be a tongue/possessor spirit, or something else... but even if it's only "By Fire Be Purged!" does the game really benefit from REQUIRING them to say that? No. If a player in my game feels the desire to add such a flourish to their spell, great! If it's all the time, or they have a few incantations, great! But requiring it every time is of no value. I agree, pointless extra bookkeeping designed to interfere with the player, not the character.

tesral
08-05-2009, 05:03 PM
I agree tes... I made the same point earlier when Comeliness was mentioned by someone else... if there's more than one race in the game, it's a BS stat.


Worse, it's a useless stat. What does it matter how "pretty" your character is? Unless you have a "Pageant Queen" class what would it be the primary stat for?

Too subjective, even within the game. Serves little purpose, has no game function. I'll let the players declare their PC to be as "pretty" as suits them. Looks might give you an initial bonus for an encounter, at least till you open your mouth and the 8 Charisma comes pouring out. Then again the evil Queen might decide to cut your heart out for being the fairest in the land.

Comeliness is just too difficult to attach a game reaction to. Too many situational variables. I'm not saying you couldn't find a use for it, but I'm unwilling to half do the job and more unwilling to do a whole job.

CEBedford
08-05-2009, 07:42 PM
I don't use comeliness I just define my characters based on their Charimsa (presence, magnetism, and ability to draw attention) along with other traits.

High Con/Str and Cha? You might be good looking, well built and able to keep people's attention socially. High Int or Wis and Cha? You can wow people with your intellect and/or common sense. High Str and Cha? You're a beefcake and good at keeping the focus on your physical body.

Take any one of these traits with a low CHA and you might be good looking, smart, sensible, and healthy but just unable to attract the right attention or socially utilize your strengths.

High Int low Cha? You're smart, too bad you buckle when dealing with people, and frequently bore those dumber than yourself. High Wis low Cha? Your common sense is keen, but you tend to rub people the wrong way when you share your opinion. Best keep your mouth shut or they might think you're smug. High Con or Str and low Cha? You're all appearance, but socially you're just not capable. All looks works for some people.

See what I mean?

Tony Misfeldt
08-06-2009, 02:41 AM
That part I never understood. One is assuming that the Human standard of beauty is the universal one, and that some species are more attractive to Humans than Humans. And that races like Dwarfs find other species more attractive to them than there own.

I don't disagree with the general idea of racial adjustments, but they should not be applied to the character, but on an encounter by encounter basis. Use a matrix showing each races' adjustment for other races, apply as required.

Each race should see its own kind as the most attractive as the general rule. At best another race might seem no less attractive. This is not to say that a given player cannot declare that Joe Human thinks that Elves rock and will consider all Elves as +2 Com when encountered. or that John Dwarf is a bigot, and will mark down any other race an additional 2 points for that reason.

Beauty is in the eyes of the beholder. One reason I never adopted Comeliness is the difficulty in assuming a universal standard of beauty.



I believe in the book it says that negative COM adjustments due to race are ignored by members of the same race. I don't think they bothered coming up with a chart for adjustments for each races point of view. I'm pretty sure the list of racial adjustments are from a human perspective.

As for COM being a useless stat, I disagree. You simply have to look through the list of skills and see which ones could benefit from a high COM score. Diplomacy, dancing, seduction, can all have COM as one of their primary stats. For myself, I use the skill list from the 2nd ed book Skills & Powers as a guide. In that book the CHA score is divided into 2 sub categories, Leadership and Appearance. Any skills with a basis in APP are skills with a basis in COM. Simple, unless you're foolish enough to get rid of all your 2nd ed stuff just because the shiny new 3rd ed has come out.

SneakSneakStabStab
08-07-2009, 02:38 AM
One of the few that i have is that the Paladin's Smite evil ability often has very little use because you can only use it a few times a day even at 20th lvl (5 times).

So i changed it so that it works whatever it is a day at your lvl plus your charisma mod, so at lvl 1 it is 1/day + CHR mod so no more then 5 times a day.

It is relatively new so i have not got the chance to use it above 5th lvl at this point but i fear it will be to powerful later on in the game at say lvl 10.

If anyone has some good advice with this rule it would be appreciated but please only constructive criticism and helpful advice.

The other one i have is that a crit is a crit you don't have to reroll to see if the crit is a crit it makes things a bit more exciting and always comes rewarded with a good explanation of what happened.

AnotherShadow
08-07-2009, 12:07 PM
When we used comliness you did not get a racial bonus ( except elves due to the stunning beauty that affects all ), and the way that it worked was that above a certain number no matter what you found the creature very beautiful even if they are not your flavor. It made for some interesting games, but we ended up dropping it due to most of the immature players we brought in started talking about how it stood for the penis size.

Tony Misfeldt
01-28-2010, 05:20 PM
COMELINESS: I've been using this rule since 1st edition. It was published in Unearthed Arcana, and is a 7th stat which is rolled to represent your character's physical beauty. It's rolled using 3d6, same as the other stats, then adjusted for race and Charisma. Half-orcs get a -3 penalty; gnomes and dwarves -1; Humans and halflings have no adjustment; half-elves and wood elves get a +1 bonus; gold elves, silver elves, and drow get a +2 bonus.
Then CHA: 2 or less gives a -8 penalty; CHA: 3 gives a -3 penalty; CHA: 4-5 gives a -2 penalty; CHA: 6-8 gives a -1 penalty; CHA:9-12 has no adjustment; CHA:13-15 gives a bonus of +1; CHA: 16-17 gives a +2 bonus; CHA: 18 gives a +3 bonus; and CHA:19+ gives a +5 bonus.
Anyone who sees a character with a COM score of 16 or more who's WIS score isn't a specific % of the COM score (the higher the COM, the lower the %) is automatically affected as if by the 2nd level illusionist spell Fascinate (sort of a weaker version of Charm Person) unless they make a successful save vs magic, adjusted for WIS. My old DM changed the saving throw to a save vs rods; staves; and wands as a phallic joke. We all thought it was so funny that we adopted that as the new saving throw (we were only teenagers at the time).
I continued using this rule right through 2nd edition, and it can be easily adapted for use in 3.X, and soon 4th edition (changing save vs magic to save vs willpower for example).

VOCAL COMPONENT: I have a rule that all players who are playing spellcasters (clerics, wizards, bards, etc) must speak the vocal component for any spell their character is casting. Thus, saying "I cast fireball at the oncoming orcs" and then rolling dice doesn't work. You have to say "I pull out a ball of bat guano, sprinkle some sulphur over it, and say 'LLAB ERIF!', and cast my fireball at the oncoming orcs". THEN you can start rolling dice for damage.

THE PAUL RULE: A member of my old gaming group, Paul, liked to play very intellectual type characters (wizards, rogues, bards, etc). The problem was he kept playing them in a hack & slash style. Rather than trying to think or role play his way out of situations, he'd always resort to violence. Also, whenever I'd try to add some real ROLE playing to the adventures, he'd whine and moan about talking to NPCs when they should be killing them, or even getting up from the table and going to watch TV while waiting for the "Real" part of the adventure to happen. I only put up with this crap because we were playing at his house, and he was the only one of us who had a place that could accomodate all of us. Still, he needed an attitude adjuster so I came up with this little rule. Every time he would start complaining about there being too much talk and not enough blood, or whenever he got up from the table saying "Call me when there's something to do", I'd deduct anywhere from 200 to 400 XP from his tally for the adventure. Eventually he learned to take part in the WHOLE adventure.

COMBAT XP: This rule may be obsolete with the creation of the Challenge Rating system in 3rd Ed, but in 2nd Ed I found that giving out the amount of XP listed with the monsters in The Monstrous Manual made players more hungry for hack & slash than for any real role playing opportunities. Things like my Paul Rule didn't have much effect at first because once they met a troll or giant they'd gain back any XP lost. Therefore I eliminated all monster XP (or as some of my players call them, "Kill Points") and only started handing out the class specific XP rewards (spell casting for wizards and priests, 10 XP/HD of monster killed for warriors, etc). Thus a fighter would only get 60 XP for killing a troll, not 5000 XP like the book says.

Skill XP:
I have another House Rule, somewhat adapted from the Paladium XP award system. Successful use of Nonweapon Proficiencies/Skills to overcome problems or obsticles on an adventure is worth XP. I think Paladium games used to give 500 XP per proficiency used. This is a bit much for a D&D game, even one using the 2nd Ed level/XP system. I've changed it to 50-100 XP per proficiency used. Of course, it has to be used within the context of the adventure, and to benefit the group. Thus, using the Climbing proficiency to climb every wall or tree you see just for the sake of climbing them grants you no XP. Using the Climbing proficiency to climb into an evil warlord's bedroom window on the top floor to kill him in his sleep, on the other hand, will. Using the Seduction Proficiency to bed every pretty girl in town just for the sake of going wenching won't grant your male swashbuckler any XP. The female rogue who uses that same proficiency to get the evil warlord to take off his heavily enchanted full plate mail armor and great helm so she could assassinate him, on the other hand, does.

ROGUE PROFICIENCY: SEDUCTION (2nd Ed: Skills & Powers)

CHARACTER POINT COST: 3

BASE CHANCE OF SUCCESS: 7

PRIMARY ABILITYSCORES: CHARISMA & COMELINESS

DISCRIPTION: Using their strong personality and good looks, a rogue uses the seduction proficiency to talk members of the opposite sex out of something, whether it be information, their property, or their clothes. This proficiency bestows upon the rogue the knowledge of body language and subtle inuendo which suggests to the person targetted that she likes this rogue and wants to be with him. If he makes his proficiency check, the targetted girl makes a Wisdom Check. If she fails, she responds favorably towards him. But if she succeeds, she sees the game for what it is. Seducers/seductresses who also have the Allure trait can adjust the targetted person's Wisdom Check by as much as a -3 penalty.


THE PAUL RULE: Whining, moaning, *female dog*ing, and complaining about having to ROLE play situations rather than ROLL play them ("Aw, we have to talk to another NPC? When does the adventure start? I wanna kill something!"); Refusing to do any ROLE playing (sitting in the corner doodling on your character sheet waiting for something to pop up for you to kill); or getting up and leaving the gaming table every time there's a ROLE playing scenario ("I'm going to go play World Of Warcraft, call me when the adventure begins") costs the player XP from their tally. This doesn't effect the XP already handed out from previous adventures (it's not like th character is attacked by a white or a vampire or something), but he could go into an XP Defecit. The player loses 200 to 400 XP per incident.

THE PETER RULE: This rule is to discourage habitual tardiness. If we agree to game at a certain time (say 7:30 pm for example), then everyone should make an effort to get there by the appointed time. Of course allowances are made for things such as traffic, weather, acts of God, etc, so the game might not ACTUALLY start until maybe a half hou later, but these are within acceptable limits. This rule is for people who agree to show up at the appointed hour and then show up two or three hours later with some half *donkey*ed excuse and no prior warning of any kind. These players are penalized 1000 XP per incident. To avoid the penalty, all the person has to do is be honest with me when arranging the day & time ("Sorry, man. I've gotta go to my parents for Sunday dinner that night. But I'll head over to your place as soon as I'm done."), or phone and let us know what's going on ("Sorry, dude. I have to work late tonight and I'm not going to be able to make it until later. Just start without me and I'll make it there as soon as I can."). I normally try and not start the game until everyone who said they're going to show arrives, so by not letting me know in advance that you're going to be late, you end up holding up the game for everyone else who showed up on time. I call it The Two Cs, Curteousy and Communication. If you know in advance that you're going to be late, let me know in advance so you don't waste everyone else's time waiting for you. Simple.

THE ALFREDO RULE: Similar to the Peter Rule, except this is to discourage habitual absenteeism. If you say you're going to be there on Game Night, then be there on Game Night. If you know in advance that you won't be able to make it, let me know. This isn't for players who can't show up because they have the flu or because work called them in for a shift at the last minute. It's for people who know when they agree to the appointed time and place that they won't be able to make it but agree anyway, or who thought they could make it when they agreed to show but found out later (but still in advance) that they actually won't and don't bother informing their DM. As I said before, I prefer to start the game when all players who agreed to show up have arrived. In the case of players who I know are going to be absent, I use their characters as NPC henchmen to help the other players out and gain at least some XP. I also try my best to keep the PC/NPC henchman alive (I can't promise he'll survive, but I can promise that he won't be used as a namelsee human shield). But for players who think that they can skip several games in a row for no good reason and come back to find their character several levels higher, they've got a big surprise awaiting them. Any player who's AWOL from the game gets a penalty of 5000 XP. Again, all you gotta do to avoid this is to be honest with me ("Sorry, man. I can't make it to the game this weekend. I'm going to Vegas with my girlfriend."). I'll do this for the first few gaming sessions. If it's apparent that he isn't going to be showing up for another game any time soon, I'll just stop calling and wonder why he said he wanted to game with me in the first place if his free time was so scarce. I like to give people the benefit of the doubt, so I'll wait for his defecit to be around -25000 XP before I give up on him.




--- Merged from Double Post ---
http://www.penandpapergames.com/forums/showthread.php?t=6165&page=7

tesral
01-28-2010, 05:45 PM
COMELINESS: I've been using this rule since 1st edition. It was published in Unearthed Arcana, and is a 7th stat which is rolled to represent your character's physical beauty. It's rolled using 3d6, same as the other stats, then adjusted for race and Charisma. Half-orcs get a -3 penalty; gnomes and dwarves -1; Humans and halflings have no adjustment; half-elves and wood elves get a +1 bonus; gold elves, silver elves, and drow get a +2 bonus.


Again you are making a certain standard of beauty the universal absolute. If life teaches anything it is that beauty is in the eye of the beholder. If any adjustment is to be made it should be done at the racial reaction level, not as part of the character's raw stats.

Why are Dwarves automatically uglier than Elves, even to other Dwarves? Considering the amount of racial dislike usually portrayed between these two races I would think that Dwarves would first find Dwarves attractive, and view the Elves with a minus. To say that Elves get a plus to comeliness even to Dwarves and Dwarves take a minus, even to Dwarves It seems rather silly on the face of it.

One of the reasons I have not adopted the stat is the complexity that properly fitting it into a mult-racial world involves.



VOCAL COMPONENT: I have a rule that all players who are playing spellcasters (clerics, wizards, bards, etc) must speak the vocal component for any spell their character is casting. Thus, saying "I cast fireball at the oncoming orcs" and then rolling dice doesn't work. You have to say "I pull out a ball of bat guano, sprinkle some sulphur over it, and say 'LLAB ERIF!', and cast my fireball at the oncoming orcs". THEN you can start rolling dice for damage.


I'll say it again, a pointless restriction on those that play casters.

Are fighters required to describe drawing their weapon in technical terms and the action they are taking I.E. "I pull my Longsword from the scabbard and attack the left troll with a martingale feint followed with riposte thrust." No you do not, "I attack the left troll" is enough.

Likewise the Rogue is not required to name his tools and describe how he is using them to overcome the wards and tumblers within the lock.

I fail to understand this urge to make the lives of those that play casters harder. The game is supose to be fun, not a chore.

TaliesinNYC
03-31-2010, 01:53 PM
I have only a small handful. KIM we use 2nd edition AD&D.

Character generation: 4d6, drop lowest; repeat 5 more times; add in racial bonuses/penalties if any; arrange as desired

Birthsigns: all characters born on Andurin are born under one of twelve birthsigns. Choose a birthsign, roll 1d100. On a roll of 01 (which is harder than it sounds, statistically and in real life), you get a special power which may or may not have a constant penalty. The powers themselves are not considered game-breaking; some are equal parts help as much as hindrance. You'll find I'm a big fan of The Elder Scrolls series.

Here's an example for anyone who's curious:


Detect Enchantment: Whenever you use this power, you are able to detect the presence of magic within a certain radius. The exact distance is not known to the player or the character. The power does not enable you to identify which items are magical; it only allows you to ascertain the presence, type/school, and intensity of magic. It also gives you a sense of a general location as well. This power is constant, and requires concentration to maintain.

Rule of Four: Because my games occur online, we have a long-standing rule that says that no games may be held unless four players are present in the "room". Less than four people means that the amount of intra-party interaction is reduced drastically which can be not as interesting. Sometimes this rule gets waived, particularly if attendance has been in a slump for a while. If we only meet once a week and a game is tabled b/c not enough people showed up, that's a strong incentive to not flake out.

Within 100 xp: if a character is within 100 xp of the next level, the points are waived and the PC is granted the level automatically.

Combat pacing: because it's an online game (and also in an effort to simulate the chaotic/rapid-fire pacing of combat), if a player takes too long in coming up with an action, I reserve the right to skip that person if I don't see something within a reasonable amount of time (say about 2-3 minutes).

Spell descriptions: I allow caster PCs to vary their spell descriptions from the usual description given in the rulebook. A mage or a priest SHAPES the spell he or she is casting by his or her experiences, thoughts, words and/or actions. The successful caster injects a little bit of him- or herself into his or her magic with each spell cast. It follows that a caster should be able to influence the APPEARANCE of the spell itself.

Therefore, each caster PC or NPC is allowed to have a motif that appears whenever he or she casts a spell from a scroll or from memory. The motif can be auditory, visual, olfactory or gustatory. The motif may be the same or may contain slight variations.

The motif must be decided upon when the character is created. The motif is optional -- the player doesn't need to take it but using it adds a little more variety, especially when someone is describing what their character is doing. (BTW I'm considering adding the fighter equivalent (something along the lines of a signature weapon maneuver. Not something that would grant additional bonuses in combat but something that adds variety to the standard "I hit the orc with my sword")).

Names and naming conventions: Character names must be relatively believable and reflect the character's origin. I don't want to see an elf running around with the name "Farfig Newton". It disrupts the integrity of the setting. I have some guidelines for the more exotic PC races like Khajiit (catfolk) and Amandean (a human subculture, much like the Wheel of Time Atha'an Miere).

ak47
04-01-2010, 07:26 PM
is the three nat 20 rule
its very rare to happen and when it does its like omg i have never had any kind of that luck before and is very good time of laughs stories and such when it does things to remember.
basically
role 1rst 20 on d20 crit
role 2nd 20 on d20 max crit damage that can happen
role 3rd 20 on d20 instant death of monster no save no nothing (reason for this is rolling 3 20's in a row is like supper rare i think odds are dont quot me is 1/5k chance)

i like its counter part also three nat 1 rule too
basically the same but in reverse towards the player also just as rare

these two rules are fun when they happen good or bad and make a good game story when they do to make it live for ever.