House Rules

2007 November 9
by Stupid Ranger

As much as we love the core rulebooks, we are all pretty well set in our house rules ways. House rules give you that extra little help when the rules don’t quite fit your party’s needs. I’m always looking for good house rules to convince my DM we should implement, but here are a few of ours to share.

Re-rolling 1’s on healing and health. When rolling for healings (either potions or spells) or rolling your hit die each level, rolling a 1 is an automatic re-roll.

No changes after your turn is over. You can change the amount of damage you did during your turn only until the next person begins his/her turn. So, if you forgot to add the +2 from the bard’s inspire courage to the 3 attacks you made, you’re just out of luck… try to remember next time!

No food need while traveling. Except in extreme climates (ie. deserts, frozen tundras, etc), it is assumed sufficient time has been allotted during the day to hunt for food so tracking rations is not necessary.

So, what house rules do you have in place?

3 Responses leave one →
  1. Omnius permalink
    November 9, 2007

    Recently posted my own list of new house rules, copying the text here for ease of reading. Check it out!

    With the new campaign about to get started, I thought I would institute some new house rules, on a trial basis.

    Private Character Generation. Players may create their character sheets, in their entirety, prior to play, and without Narrator supervision. This includes the rolling of stats, HP, and the like. I trust my players, and realize that they will be the only ones to enjoy the game any less should they cheat. Players are encouraged to take their time creating their character, and are still welcome to do so in my presence and with my consultation.

    Stat Re-rolls. After rolling their stats, and recording the result of each individual die, players may choose to re-roll a single die, with the new value replacing the die’s old value.

    The Assured Death Rule. Players may, at any time, ask if the course of action they are pondering or pursuing will result in any sort of assured death, or any situation which is nearly impossible to survive.

    The 80% Rule. In the event of PC death, retirement, or write-out, the new character may be created with starting XP equivalent to 80% of the party’s average XP total

    Highlander Trench Coats. I believe I’ve seen another name for this, but I cannot recall it. In Highlander, swords as big as claymores are often stored in trench coats, cloaks, or something equivalent. They may be carried around for a near endless period of time, without revealing themselves or proving any real hindrance. Similar restrictions will be waived for PCs when appropriate.

    The Respec Rule. Characters may, when appropriate time and training is available between adventures, lose the benefits of old feats in exchange for new ones which may be selected. Skill ranks may be re-assigned similarly.

  2. Katherine permalink
    November 10, 2007

    The exception to the food rule is the food needed for mounts. There was a period for a while when our party needed to buy new mounts in every town, part of the “start-up” cost of the mounts was a 10-day supply of food.
    It’s difficult to say if we would have kept track and re-upped the supply because we would without exception forget to take the mounts with us when we ran from the town.

  3. kanati permalink
    November 11, 2007

    We are pretty lax on rations… But there are times when it’s important to NOT be lax. In any forbidding place like the desert or a snowy mountaintop… Or as in our current campaign… supplying a large marching army. In such positions it is important for the DM to make sure that food is tracked because it then becomes a dramatic point and an adversary.

    If the party is on a snowy mountaintop, snowed into a small cave and food isn’t tracked. So what? They wait it out and walk off the mountain. But if it is… They have 2 days of food left with no end to the blizzard in sight. A week passes and they are starving, eating snow for water, and must either try to hike out of the cave in 8 foot snow drifts, or start eating their comrades… Which has a more dramatic element to it?

    The army that’s been raised is running low on food and rationing has been imposed. Morale is starting to run low and desertion is starting to happen. How well is that army going to fight for you if you cannot even feed them properly?

    Tracking food on a day to day basis is a pain in the butt for the players and the DM. But sometimes it’s necessary for both the story and realism’s sake.

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