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Thread: House Rules. Do you have them and what are they?

  1. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by tesral View Post
    That's why you need a book. A book of house rules. Everyone has them, some have more than others.
    I used to have three 3", 3-ring binders of hand-written and hand-typed (pre-computer!) house rules. Thanks to 3.5, I got rid of them and have just a short list that wouldn't fill out a standard adventure module.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Malruhn View Post
    I used to have three 3", 3-ring binders of hand-written and hand-typed (pre-computer!) house rules. Thanks to 3.5, I got rid of them and have just a short list that wouldn't fill out a standard adventure module.
    I just write my own books.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
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    Yeah, well, Mr. ORGANIZED, some of us just... aren't! :P

    I thought of it, I just couldn't get into the whole... organizational... thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Malruhn View Post
    Yeah, well, Mr. ORGANIZED, some of us just... aren't! :P

    I thought of it, I just couldn't get into the whole... organizational... thing.
    I reached a point some 18 years ago were it was get organized or DIE! I had reached the point where it too me ages to find anything. I spent far too many minutes in far too many game sessions paper flipping when I should be DMing. So I organized and I've made som effort to stay that way. I have hard drives, file cabients and so forth. I know what shelves various books are on.

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
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    D&D 3.5 House Rules
    Someone in the group has to own the book that the class, feat, skill, spell, etc., comes from. The person using it doesn't need to own it, just someone in the group does. I think it's fair to pay for what you use and two it sure as hell cuts down on bloat.

    For rolling HP after 1st level:

    d4 > 1d3 +1
    d6 > 1d4 +2
    d8 > 1d6 +2
    d10 > 1d6 +4
    d12 > 1d8 +4

    Critical confirmations:
    If a confirmation roll is a natural 20, an additional critical threat may be confirmed, every 20 is a chance to confirm an additional multiplier for that attack. Getting a natural 20 on the confirm roll happens once in a while, often enough to be relevant. Everyone in my group likes the idea of possibly getting a super huge hit once in a blue blue moon, even if it did result in a x2 critical hit from a greatclub from a hill giant suddenly becoming a x4 critical that killed a PC. OTOH, a brutal critical did save the entire party from an imminent TPK. There was much rejoicing after that hit.

    Critical fumble:
    Natural 1. Roll a d20 add BAB. If result is greater than 10 no fumble, though a natural 1 on a fumble check is always a fumble.

  6. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by clint View Post
    D&D 3.5 House Rules
    Someone in the group has to own the book that the class, feat, skill, spell, etc., comes from. The person using it doesn't need to own it, just someone in the group does. I think it's fair to pay for what you use and two it sure as hell cuts down on bloat.

    For rolling HP after 1st level:
    d4 > 1d3 +1
    d6 > 1d4 +2
    d8 > 1d6 +2
    d10 > 1d6 +4
    d12 > 1d8 +4

    Critical confirmations:
    If a confirmation roll is a natural 20, an additional critical threat may be confirmed, every 20 is a chance to confirm an additional multiplier for that attack. Getting a natural 20 on the confirm roll happens once in a while, often enough to be relevant. Everyone in my group likes the idea of possibly getting a super huge hit once in a blue blue moon, even if it did result in a x2 critical hit from a greatclub from a hill giant suddenly becoming a x4 critical that killed a PC. OTOH, a brutal critical did save the entire party from an imminent TPK. There was much rejoicing after that hit.

    Critical fumble:
    Natural 1. Roll a d20 add BAB. If result is greater than 10 no fumble, though a natural 1 on a fumble check is always a fumble.
    My old DM had the same rule. The entire group had all the books via PDF, but were missing a few paper copies(BoED, BoVD, Complete Champion).

    I love that crit roll rule though. Awesome!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Valdar View Post
    True. This is a thread about house rules though.
    Thank you. It's about time someone pointed that out to Tesral. I've noticed he and I agree about a great many things, but complaining that a house rule on a "House Rules" thread contradict an existing rule is sorta missing the point.

    Quote Originally Posted by clint View Post
    For rolling HP after 1st level:
    d4 > 1d3 +1
    d6 > 1d4 +2
    d8 > 1d6 +2
    d10 > 1d6 +4
    d12 > 1d8 +4
    This is interesting. I may adopt this one for my hybrid game. It cetrainly will help decrease character mortality.

    Quote Originally Posted by tesral View Post
    Anything but the spell name it seems. No, too much work for no reasonable return.
    You can say the spell name if you wish, just not in English. On Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Willow and Amy always spoke the verbal components of their spells in Latin. As for the "reasonable return", it comes in the form of extra XP and extra Character Points for good roleplaying. Not to mention the fact that the fun in RPGs comes from actually ROLE playing, not throwing dice around.

    Quote Originally Posted by Valdar View Post
    Thank you! Basically, the noncombat game mechanic is that the DM sets a DC for an encounter, and decides on a certain number of successes and failures that will determine success or failure for the encounter. The players have the option of an "easy" roll (five less than the DC), "average" (the DC), or "hard" (five more than the DC). Failing an easy roll counts as two failures, and succeeding at a hard roll grants +2 to the next roll. Players then take turns rolling against a skill, with a justification of why the skill applies to the given encounter.
    I haven't started using DCs yet, thus this rule isn't actually usable with my hybrid game yet. However I will keep this in mind.

    Quote Originally Posted by Valdar View Post
    As an aside, when the male version of Zatanna (the original character's little brother) was introduced in "52", the layout artist drew him in fishnets and a leotard as a joke. Due to time constraints (it was a weekly book), that panel almost made it in as-is...
    That is hilarious!

    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.

    Quote Originally Posted by dankster1221 View Post
    Comeliness: Always a fixture in my campaigns though I make PC's roll a Will save whenever they encounter someone with a higher Comeliness than themselves.
    You should change that to those with a higher Comeliness than their Wisdom scores. That makes more sense than having to roll a WILL Save because someone else is prettier than they are. I would make the DC for the saving throw = the other person's Comeliness score.
    Last edited by Farcaster; 05-14-2008 at 04:22 PM. Reason: Use Multi-Quote

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Misfeldt View Post
    You can say the spell name if you wish, just not in English. On Buffy The Vampire Slayer, Willow and Amy always spoke the verbal components of their spells in Latin. As for the "reasonable return", it comes in the form of extra XP and extra Character Points for good roleplaying. Not to mention the fact that the fun in RPGs comes from actually ROLE playing, not throwing dice around.
    First, I am certain that if I were forced to cry out some gibberish every time my character's spell went off, it would not enhance my enjoyment of the roleplaying experience. Far from it, it would be an annoyance. But, if your players like that sort of thing, more power to them. I'd be wary about forcing anyone who joins your game to do likewise though, as it might have the opposite affect of enriching the game for them.

    You also said something that I think is very telling. The "fun in RPGs comes from actually ROLE playing..." That is not a statement of fact. It is an opinion. Different people enjoy different things about roleplaying games. Some like the strategic/tactical side of it, and others the roleplaying. This much is evident by a casual perusal of the player registry. Some people like to gloss over the "roleplaying" because what they really like is the combat. Others, like to gloss over the combat, because it gets in the way of what they really enjoy -- roleplaying. Personally, I like a mixture of both. But, none of these positions is more valid than any other. So, one should be wary of looking down their nose at anyone that plays the game differently than they do.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Farcaster View Post
    You also said something that I think is very telling. The "fun in RPGs comes from actually ROLE playing..." That is not a statement of fact. It is an opinion. Different people enjoy different things about roleplaying games. Some like the strategic/tactical side of it, and others the roleplaying. This much is evident by a casual perusal of the player registry. Some people like to gloss over the "roleplaying" because what they really like is the combat. Others, like to gloss over the combat, because it gets in the way of what they really enjoy -- roleplaying. Personally, I like a mixture of both. But, none of these positions is more valid than any other. So, one should be wary of looking down their nose at anyone that plays the game differently than they do.
    Fair enough. However, it's my opinion that people who prefer the strategic/tactical side of RPGs should stick to playing characters that cater to such players, namely the warrior type classes. The other classes, which are easier to kill at lower levels and therefor less desirable to be played by "Hack & Slashers" or "ROLL players", are designed more to be ROLE played. They get all the cool stuff at higher levels (spells that go "BOOM") as a reward for having to ROLE play through all the lower levels and then hide behind the party's tanks when the combat ensues.

    Just for the record, I used to be a roll player. I used to think that the adventure didn't really get started until my character got to start killing stuff. You know what? That got BORING! So I started giving my characters more interesting personalities, taking a more active role in the ROLE playing parts of the game. Now some of my fondest memories of playing D&D are of playing in adventures where my characters didn't have to kill a damn thing. When I play now, I still favor the warrior classes but my warriors all have unique and destinct personalities, backgrounds, and goals, and I play those personalities to the hilt. Now I try to play with people who are cut from a similar cloth, thus the house rules. They are as much to prevent the inclusion of roll players into the group as they are to ensure the players who are accepted into the group are there to role play and not roll play.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Misfeldt View Post
    Fair enough. However, it's my opinion that people who prefer the strategic/tactical side of RPGs should stick to playing characters that cater to such players, namely the warrior type classes. The other classes, which are easier to kill at lower levels and therefor less desirable to be played by "Hack & Slashers" or "ROLL players", are designed more to be ROLE played. They get all the cool stuff at higher levels (spells that go "BOOM") as a reward for having to ROLE play through all the lower levels and then hide behind the party's tanks when the combat ensues.
    However I have to totally agree with Farcaster here. And I have seen more than a few damage monsters made out of wizards and psionists. Any class can be twinked to be a tactical buzz saw, any class.

    I left a group that preferred combat over role-playing. I prefer role-playing to combat and I run a game that way. It doesn't make their style of play wrong, just wrong for me.

    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 Tony Misfeldt View Post
    Just for the record, I used to be a roll player. I used to think that the adventure didn't really get started until my character got to start killing stuff. You know what? That got BORING! So I started giving my characters more interesting personalities, taking a more active role in the ROLE playing parts of the game. Now some of my fondest memories of playing D&D are of playing in adventures where my characters didn't have to kill a damn thing. When I play now, I still favor the warrior classes but my warriors all have unique and destinct personalities, backgrounds, and goals, and I play those personalities to the hilt. Now I try to play with people who are cut from a similar cloth, thus the house rules. They are as much to prevent the inclusion of roll players into the group as they are to ensure the players who are accepted into the group are there to role play and not roll play.
    It is my firmly held opinion that nearly all ROLE players started out as ROLL players - and that very few of us (that have made the switch) started out ROLE-centered. After playing for almost 30 years, I've only seen a couple of them.

    Some (the elitists) think that once you go ROLE, you have matured and that ROLLING is either immature or a "lesser" form of gaming.

    Personally, I think it's like beef... some like it rare, some like it well done. Neither is truly better, it is just a matter of taste for that person.

    I started out for about three years without ever naming a character, and rolling (1st Ed) until I got six stats that qualified me as a monk (hey, it was hardest to qualify for, ergo it MUST be the best!!). Alignment was always LG, as monks had to be good - but we all played more CN/CE - as we didn't really understand the concept. We all used great-swords (best damage against s/m and large targets!) and long-bows. NPC's in town were just places to either meet up (the bar) or sell our stuff (the general store), and they had no names either.

    Then one day I got bored... and a new DM who ran things a bit differently. We had to remember names of NPC's, and they sure remembered us... like when we caught hell for being rude the LAST time we were in town... the HORRORS!!! My last pC (paper-character - as opposed to a PC (player character)) was a fighter that made it to 7th level before he died a glorious death at the hands of a single orc.

    After that, all my characters have been unique and DAMNED fun to play. I would like to meet ALL of them, even the slimy evil ones.

    But every once in a while, I still like to grab my magic d20 and hack and slash things for an evening - with no repercussions. I consider it a great diversion... about every five years or so. More than that, and I get bored again.

    Yeah, I likes my steak rare. Your mileage may vary.

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    Dude, I'm so old scholl my first books are on paypraus. The first dungeons were little more than collections of monsters and treasure. Plot was non existent. The outside existed only to support you going inside.

    I can honestly say that all my characters have had names. I still have some of those ancient character sheets. I am a true pack rat that throws nothing away.

    Some days you play complicated plots. Some days I'll have a player plop down in their seat with "lets get started, I want to kill something". Catharsis is a good thing. That is part of what the game is for.

    I simply refuse to be elitist about it. Kids are going to play a different game that do adults. That is good. That is how it should be. Different people will have different tastes, again there is nothing wrong with that. If the guy working Customer Services all day wants to play Rambo cutting down endless lines of idiots who am I to tell him he can't?

    Garry AKA --Phoenix-- Rising above the Flames.
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  13. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by tesral View Post
    Dude, I'm so old scholl my first books are on paypraus. The first dungeons were little more than collections of monsters and treasure. Plot was non existent. The outside existed only to support you going inside.

    I can honestly say that all my characters have had names. I still have some of those ancient character sheets. I am a true pack rat that throws nothing away.

    Some days you play complicated plots. Some days I'll have a player plop down in their seat with "lets get started, I want to kill something". Catharsis is a good thing. That is part of what the game is for.

    I simply refuse to be elitist about it. Kids are going to play a different game that do adults. That is good. That is how it should be. Different people will have different tastes, again there is nothing wrong with that. If the guy working Customer Services all day wants to play Rambo cutting down endless lines of idiots who am I to tell him he can't?
    But where's the fun in playing Michael Myers sitting around waiting for Halloween to roll around so he can go kill his baby sister and her friends? Rambo might be the quiet type until it's time to lop off a few heads, but that doesn't mean that when he's not talking he's also not thinking. Playing a bloodthirsty barbarian as a bloodthirsty barbarian is good roleplaying. I've never said it wasn't. Playing a bloodthirsty barbarian as a mindless automiton, however, is not.

    Likewise, playing a high level mage as a walking fireball factory with no mind or personality to speak of is poor roleplaying. My rules governing XP awarded for good roleplaying, deducted for refusal to/complaining about roleplay(ing), and how spells function are to help prevent the characters from being mindless automitons who go around killing just for the sake of going around killing. Sometimes as a DM I throw the characters into a Helmsdeep/Alamo type situation which is mostly combat & strategy and very little roleplaying. As one who enjoys playing warrior types, I enjoy both running and playing these types of adventures as well. But I don't make the entire campaign like that. It's just an occassional treat for those who enjoy a little, or cut their teeth on, Hack & Slash. If they want the entire campaign to be that bloody, they're looking in the wrong place. Besides, the wizards would all likely get killed off in such an adventure.

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    Sorry to kibitz, but I have been monitoring this thread, and it is indeed both very interesting and very telling, (I'm a bit of a lurker by nature) But these last posts remind me of a game I'm in: It took a huge swing from a very intense role-play to almost completely roll play, and as the parties wizard, at 2-3 level I grew very annoyed and bored that the "combat specialists" were constantly slowing up the flow of the game with endless "waiting at the door", trying to draw the monster/npc into a bottleneck or tactically superior situation, I literally sat for almost an hour while guys ran back and forth trying to set up the proper tactic. I have to agree with Tony on this point.
    Ultimately the DM is responsible for the tempo and balance of the session-in my case I believe the DM should have taken steps to involve everyone, whether by a wandering monster or fortuitous find, or what have you. I couldn't for the life of me think of any way to involve my character, without ruining the persona I have developed, in other words if I involved myself (without a catalyst) I would be "out" of the character I had already established.
    But I also believe that everyone at the table has a responsibility to step up and be aware of the group...if you want to be tacti-centric (TM) you must also allow the other people at the table to be verbose and witty (not me tho), hell I love casting enlarge and watching someone do something hulklike with their new +6 to hit. if this seems to go in circles, that's because it does..the point being we all play this game for different reasons, we have to be aware of that, and plan accordingly as players and DM's to get the "juice" out of every session. I leave sessions like that, trying to figure out how I could have altered it so we all have fun...and as for that one, the answer still eludes me, but I'm still going back in a week to give it another go

    Edit: sorry for the continued threadjack
    Last edited by amardolem; 05-15-2008 at 04:39 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Tony Misfeldt View Post
    But where's the fun in playing Michael Myers sitting around waiting for Halloween to roll around so he can go kill his baby sister and her friends?
    You know, I don't see it either, but some people get a kick out of that kind of gaming. I simply do not feel right in telling them; "But you're having the wrong kind of fun!" It's not for me, I don't enjoy it. However, they do, and I will not gainstay their right to enjoy it.

    Frankly I know some mature people that enjoy the mindless kill, kill, kill as a relief from a boring or frustrating job. If they are having fun at it? I know people that play in god-like games with power that makes my high fantasy setting look like Mundanesville. To rich for my blood, but if they are having fun?

    If they are having fun at it, I don't have anything to say. Gamers are too thin on the ground to break up into little warring camps.

    There are days I want to play out the drama and the glory of a good RPG session. there are days I want the nitty gritty of a good tactical war game. Heck, I even pull out the PS2 once in a while for a good "if it moves shoot it" hour or two.

    There is no wrong way to game except to not have fun.

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