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Thread: Homebrew Rules. Everyone has a few. What are some of yours?

  1. #46
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    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).

  2. #47
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    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.

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    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.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dytrrnikl View Post
    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
    Fighter: "I can kill a guy in one turn."
    Cleric: "I can kill a guy in half a turn."
    Wizard: "I can kill a guy before my turn."
    Bard: "I can get three idiots to kill guys for me."

  5. #50
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Misfeldt View Post
    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.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    The Dean of Old School
    The Olde Phoenix Inn
    Metro Detroit Linux Users Group

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    Quote Originally Posted by gajenx View Post
    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.

  7. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Misfeldt View Post
    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.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
    The Dean of Old School
    The Olde Phoenix Inn
    Metro Detroit Linux Users Group

  8. #53
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Misfeldt View Post
    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.

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    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.

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    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.
    "...and all the people of the world as one voice sang a hymn.The Song of all creation screamed for justice. We are that justice." -unknown bard's final dictation before the last war.-

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    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.
    Fighter: "I can kill a guy in one turn."
    Cleric: "I can kill a guy in half a turn."
    Wizard: "I can kill a guy before my turn."
    Bard: "I can get three idiots to kill guys for me."

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    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.
    Last edited by Tamburlain; 07-31-2009 at 05:18 PM.
    There is no path, traveler; the path is made by walking.
    -Antonio Machado

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    Quote Originally Posted by korhal23 View Post
    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.
    "...and all the people of the world as one voice sang a hymn.The Song of all creation screamed for justice. We are that justice." -unknown bard's final dictation before the last war.-

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    Quote Originally Posted by Clerical_Errer View Post
    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.
    Fighter: "I can kill a guy in one turn."
    Cleric: "I can kill a guy in half a turn."
    Wizard: "I can kill a guy before my turn."
    Bard: "I can get three idiots to kill guys for me."

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    Quote Originally Posted by gajenx View Post
    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.

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