Beginning HP and Stats:
Heroes at first level get a maximum creature die or their maximum class die, whichever is greater. For example, a first level wizard would get 8 hp plus his Constitution modifier at first level, but d4 thereafter. For example, a first level half fey fighter would get 1d10 rather than the fey d6. All creatures have their racial die or their class die, whichever is greater.
Creatures with more than 1 HD replace their last HD with a class level when gaining a class level, using the aforementioned rules. That means that an awakened wolf who takes a level of rogue would still get d8 for that first level of rogue, although it would have to be rolled since it isn’t the true first HD of the creature. Subsequent levels would use the rogue’s d6 as normal. This solves the problem of jumping from a first level fighter orc being 1st level and a gnoll instantly becoming 3rd level because it has two racial HD. Instead, the gnoll would be second level, staying the same relative distance from the orc in HD as they both are without class levels.
We favor organic rolling for stats. Roll 4d6 dropping the lowest. Reroll the lowest score. Swap two stats of your choice. Those are your ability scores.
Gaining Levels: To level, you must rest in relative safety for a normal period for your race or species (usually 8 hours) but in any case a minimum of 2 hrs (even if you are an outsider) in order to reflect upon the experiences that have brought you to this point. Then you may level your character, unless the DM says otherwise.
To roll hp when gaining a level roll the appropriate die ignoring the bottom quarter of possible results (rounded down 1-3 on d12, but only 1 on d6, etc.). Take your own roll or the DM’s roll. This choice is final. Adjust that number for feats and Constitution modifiers. That is the hp you gain at that level. Add it to your max hp. If wounded, add that number to your current hp as well. Roll Spiritual hp by simply rolling d4 once and taking the number.
Half-Orcs have either a -2 to cha or wis, but not both. The character should choose at the time of creation which stat takes the penalty.
Half-Elves no longer have their skill bonuses, instead they gain +1 skill point per level as humans do.
Anytime a character levels in a favored class the character gains +1 hp.
Humans can choose from wizard, fighter, cleric, or rogue for their favored class.
h2. Bonus Feats:
Characters gain a feat at first level and every odd level thereafter.
Sorcerer’s gain the eschew materials feat free at 2nd level. At 21st they gain ignore material components as a bonus feat.
When crafting an item, you must be able to cast the requisite spells and have the requisite caster level to craft the item. If necessary, with the use of the use magic device skill, you may cast these spells off of scrolls in order to successfully craft an item. Any failed check causes the failure of the item including loss of the scroll, half the materials and half the time to craft.
Warlocks do not gain imbue item at 12th level; instead, they qualify as a caster level of whatever their level is for the purpose of crafting feats and can craft items with the aid of scrolls using that same caster level for prerequisites. This ability is one of the basic abilities of all warlocks. In the case of multi-classing, this caster level overlaps with arcane and divine classes, unless an appropriate feat is taken.
When grappling, a character using a light weapon to attack does not take the -4 penalty indicated in the combat chapter of the player’s manual. Instead, if a light or natural weapon is already ready, the character may attack as normal with one hand or several natural weapons. Drawing a light weapon while in a grapple still requires a grapple check.
Fatigue and Starvation:
A level of fatigue is defined as -1 to Strength and Dexterity.
h3. Prolonged Exertion:
Prolonged exertion is defined as combat, hustling, swimming, or similar h3. exertion for an hour or more. For every hour of exertion, the creature takes two levels of fatigue. A successful constitution check DC 5+levels of fatigue will halve this effect (ie, on a successful con check, the character takes only one level of fatigue). It takes a time period or rest equal to half the time spent in exertion to recover from fatigue. The rule is: every hour of rest recovers 2 levels of fatigue.
h3. Rapid Exertion:
Rapid exertion is defined as combat, running, or similar activities (barbarian rage has its own rules). A creature can maintain such an action for a number of rounds equal to their constitution score. Beyond that point, the creature must make a DC 10+1 per check already made. Once a check is failed, the creature is forced to cease said activity and rest for 1 minute (10 rds). During a rest period they may only take move actions. After that time they may continue the activity. If a creature attempts overland travel at a run (or combat) we assume that frequent break periods cause the character to achieve a level of exertion similar to a hustle and a similar travel speed.
h3. Lack of Sleep:
Every hour of activity beyond 16 hours accrues an additional level of fatigue per hour until a rest period is taken (8 hours for the average human, 4 hours for an elf, 2 hours with a ring of sustenance). After a rest cycle, even if all fatigue is not removed from such a rest, the creature will have another 16 hours before it begins to be penalized again.
A creature with no food gains two levels of fatigue per day and dies in three weeks. These fatigue levels cannot be removed until a proper sustenance is gained.
h3. Starvation and Thirst:
Items do not need to have an Enhancement bonus in order to have special abilities.
h3. Multiple Enhancements/Enchantments on Items:
A character is considered to have suffered massive damage if he takes 50 hp of damage from a single attack or loses 50% of his total hp to a single attack, whichever is numerically greater. The character will also roll on the table for Maiming and Scarring.
h1. Maiming and Scarring:
A character suffers a scar, maiming wound, or dismemberment when he takes 30 hp of damage in a single strike, or takes 30% of his total hp in damage in a single strike, whichever is greater. This includes damage taken and survived in the negative. Take the percentage of total hp lost and add it to a rolled percentage, then compare on the following table:
Some portion of you is destroyed or dismembered leaving you legitimately crippled until some major magic can restore you.
Entire Arm – you lose your arm at the shoulder. You may no longer gain the benefits of bracers. You cannot wield a weapon or benefit from a ring in that hand. It cannot hold a shield. There is no effective means of creating a prosthetic, so you cannot climb. You have a -6 to swim. You must make a spellcraft check DC 20+Spell Level to cast a spell with a semantic component.
Leg(s) – You lose either both legs at the knee or one leg near the hip. In either case, you can no longer hustle or run. Your speed is reduced to 5’. You cannot take a 5’ step. You are considered prone, unless you use a crutch when moving or make a successful DC 20 balance check. You lose 6 to 18 inches of height if both legs are lost. You cannot gain the benefit of magical boots. You take a -6 to move silently, balance, tumble, and climb.
Blindness – You have lost your eyes. The blow ruined your face as well, giving you a -4 to all interpersonal skill checks. You suffer all of the penalties associated with blindness as detailed in the core rules. (DMG 305)
Organ – You have damaged an important organ. Regardless of the specifics, you gain a permanent -2 modifier to your constitution. Other complications may ensue (DMs Discretion).
Caveat: Any of these conditions can be cured by application of a selection of abilities and spells, some preceded by death: Reincarnation, Regeneration, Regenerate, Resurrection, and True Resurrection. Any of these applied according to their natural usage restores lost limbs and members and prevents serious scarring. Cure magic applied before any natural healing occurs reduces the severity of the consequences by one category.
Near Death and Stabilizing
When a character is below 0 HP, (s)he must make a fortitude save each round at DC 15+amount negative to stabilize. Thus, if a character is at -3, the DC to stabilize is 18. If the character does not stabilize, (s)he takes one point of damage (and raises the DC by one) and attempts the save again the next round. A natural 20 always successfully stabilizes.
When characters take damage sufficient to put them at -10 HP or -(Character Level/HD) whichever is a lower value, they die. This means that a 16th level character will die at -16. This is to account for the higher damage which is dealt characters at higher levels.
h1. Repeating Criticals and Fumbles:
If a character rolls a critical threat and confirms it by rolling a second natural 20, the character has the chance to increase the multiple of the critical if he can again confirm the critical by rolling a hit. Rolling a 1 that misses threatens a fumble only on the primary attack, never on any kind of confirmation roll. The character confirms the fumble by rolling a second miss. Rolling a 20 on a fumble confirmation roll has no special effect (unless it doesn’t normally hit, then see below) and will never threaten a critical in this context. There are not normally repeating fumbles (how bad can it be, honestly?). Fumble results will be determined by the DM. For example: Lask, the rogue, rolls an attack with his dagger and hits with a 19, which is a critical threat. He confirms the threat with a 20, so he will deal x2 damage, a normal crit for a dagger, and has the chance to increase the multiplier. He then rolls to confirm an extra multiple and rolls an additional 20, so he will deal x3 damage. He then rolls a 1, which does not confirm an additional multiple, so he will not deal x4 damage, but it has no adverse results in this context. Conversely, his opponent, after taking the critical hit to the eye(see maiming table above), is still alive. The creature attacks him, but rolls a natural 1. It rolls and confirms the fumble by missing, so the creature falls flat on its backside. Lask finishes it off with a well placed thrust.
‘20s’ and ‘1s’:
If it takes more than 20 to hit (or less than 1 to miss) roll again, counting the roll as twenty higher (or twenty lower)
A natural 20 which does not equal the required AC does not necessarily hit, nor does a natural 1 which reaches the necessary AC automatically miss. If you roll a 20 and it doesn’t equal the AC with modifiers reroll d20 but add 20 in addition to all other modifiers as though adding the previous die roll to this roll. Every subsequent roll of 20 would add 20 to hit until the number required was reached. For example, Pip the goblin has a -1 to hit and he wants to suicidally charge an Ancient Gold Wyrm of Unreasonable Size whose AC is 72. Pip rolls a natural 20 -1 for his attack bonuses which makes 19. That isn’t high enough, but because he rolled a natural 20 he rolls again and gets a second natural 20. This causes him to have a total of 39 which still doesn’t hit, so he rolls again. He rolls a third natural 20 and adds 40 for the previous two natural 20s, but minuses one for his pitiful to hit bonus. That puts him at 59. He then rolls a 1 which makes a total of 60 (1+60-1). He fails to penetrate the dragon’s scales. Then the dragon attacks Pip. Pip has an AC of 7. The dragon has a 43 for a total of 25. Pip is vaporized by the dragon’s tail slap.
A 20 which hits threatens a critical. A 20 which would miss results in another roll (considered twenty higher than the value indicated on the die) to see if it is then possible to hit. A natural 1 which misses threatens a fumble. A natural 1 which would normally hit results in another roll considered 20 lower to see if it is indeed a miss or a hit. Only rolls with no positive modifiers from previous natural 20s can be fumbles. Only rolls with no negative modifiers can be criticals. Confirmation rolls are subject to the aforementioned repeating criticals and fumbles rule.
Fumbles at High Levels:
Characters with a base attack bonus of 8 or better no longer fumble except on two consecutive natural 1s. That is, a natural 1 followed by another natural 1 on the confirmation roll confirms a fumble. Additionally, these rolls must still be misses.
Fumbles at Epic Levels:
Epic Characters who have an attack bonus of 15 or better (including Epic bonuses for our purposes) no longer fumble, except in truly extraordinary circumstances. They are simply too skilled to leave themselves vulnerable.
Over Extension – You provoke attacks of opportunity from all creatures currently threatening you.
Trip – You fall prone.
Stumble – You are flatfooted for the next round. (If you have uncanny dodge, disregard)
Dropsy – Your weapon falls at your feet. (If unarmed, disregard)
Slow Recovery – Next round, you are limited to one standard action.
Wild Swing – Your wild attack strikes your own limb. Deal yourself half normal damage.
Collision – You slam into an enemy or object. You are dazed for 1 rd. (If immune, disregard).
In order to encourage characters to branch out, the following two rules will be instigated. All cross class skills, while maintaining the cap, cost only one point to gain a rank of proficiency. Additionally, all creatures get 1 extra skill point per level which may not raise a skill above the cross class cap, but may be used on class or cross class skills. Cross class skills still maintain a cap of 1/2(character level+3). At first level, you gain 4 of these skill points (in other words, you do get the normal x4 skill points for this skill point too).
Skills which require training, including but not limited to tumble, use magic device, knowledges, and professions, cannot be learned without the express tutelage of a fellow character or at first level. As long as the character has at least one rank in a trained skill, that skill can then be increased at each level.
Souls and Possession:
Each creature has a soul that is fitted only to their own body. Any creature not in a body either artificially crafted especially for it or their own natural biological body is considered to be in possession of that body and can be affected by all the standard rules for possession, including periodic possession checks if the host is intelligent and vulnerability to attacks that dislodge possessing spirits (such as dispel evil, circle of protection evil, etc).
Spirits and Souls in combat:
Every character has a spirit, hereafter called a soul, in addition to their corporeal body. Normally, this incorporeal portion of their body is impervious to harm. There are two rare exceptions:
All soul damage done by necromantic abilities damages the soul directly, rather than the body.
Energy Drain converts to soul damage at the rate of 1d6 per level drained. Benefits to the monster draining life and repercussions to victims killed in this manner remain the same as stated in the core rules.
All chilling touch attacks from undead creatures damage the soul directly rather than the body(ie, lich).
Each character should keep a note of their soul’s HP. It is 1d4+WS modifier per HD for all corporeal creatures, regardless of class, type, or race.
Incorporeal creatures can only be hurt in the following manner:
Magical weapons deal only the enhancement bonus as damage. For example, a +1 sword would deal 1 point of damage on a hit. Ghost touch weapons deal damage normally, minus any energy damage properties (flaming, frost, shocking, sonic, etc.).
Force, and positive energy damage incorporeal creatures normally. Negative energy damage heals all undead.
Energy attacks (fire, cold, electricity, acid, etc.) have no effect on incorporeal creatures, unless otherwise specified.
Normal weapons of any material deal no damage to incorporeal creatures, unless otherwise specified.
All Incorporeal undead change their Hit Dice to d4s and may add their wisdom modifier to their hp in place of constitution. For simplicity, assume 2 or 2.5 hp per HD when converting monsters.
If a character’s soul is destroyed, she is killed and cannot be raised for a number of weeks equal to 52 minus her HD+WS score. This often necessitates preservation of the corpse or powerful resurrection magic. An incorporeal undead that is destroyed reforms in a number of weeks equal to 520 minus its HD+WS score. Ghosts will often seek to recover lost possessions, once they coalesce. Incorporeal undead which are trapped, put to rest(by appeasement, proper burial, etc.), or destroyed by a cleric’s turning ability cannot reform.
h2. Energy Drain:
Most undead attacks remain unchanged, but energy drain no longer drains levels, it drains soul points. Each level of energy drain deals 1d6 points of damage to soul points. For creatures with double energy drain, this translates to 2d6 damage. Creatures killed by soul death have been turned and the description for the results of death by energy drain apply, for example rising as a wight in a few rounds. If no such information appears, the character’s soul is dispersed and regathers according to the rules of spiritual death.
h1. Weapon Speeds:
Characters using weapons of various sizes gain additional attacks depending on the size of the weapon they are using.
Any increase in weapon size compared to creature size beyond that becomes 1 point slower (per 9 or 10)*
A weapon larger than a greatsword for your race is considered extremely slow(per 8)*
Two handed weapons are considered very slow(per 7)*
Bastard Swords, and Dwarven Axes are considered slow(per 6)
One Handed weapons are considered normal(per 5)*
Light weapons are considered fast(per 4)
Daggers, smaller weapons, and natural attacks are considered natural speeds if applicable (one attack per 3)
A normal weapon gains an extra attack on the normal scale, ie a 20th level fighter would use the 20/15/10/5 scale. A fast weapon gains an attack one point sooner, ie a 20th level fighter would use 20/16/12/8/4. A natural weapon gains an extra attack two points sooner, ie a 20th level fighter would use 20/17/14/11/8/5/2. You cannot swing faster than a natural weapon, although feats or magic may provide additional attacks using their own rules. A slow weapon goes the other direction, ie a 20th level fighter would use 20/14/8/2. A very slow weapon reduces once more to 20/13/6. The one exception I know of that is even slower is the combination of monkey grip and fullblade proficiency which gives a weapon two size catagories larger than a great sword. For that weapon, the speed would be extremely slow – 20/12/4 for a 20th level fighter. An epic level fighter might achieve an even larger weapon somehow. Such a character would have the following attack progression at 21st level: 20/11/2 (with a +1 epic bonus to hit which doesn’t provide additional swings in a round).
Note: Penalties for too large or too small weapons (-2 for each size category too big/small, and one step change in effort to wield) remain as stated in the core rules.
h2. **Two Handed Weapons and Weapon Speed:
Any weapon wielded in two hands is treated one speed category faster than if it were wielded in one hand. For example, a bastard sword in two hands has a speed of normal, but one wielded in one hand has a speed of slow. Thus, barring unusual circumstances, all speeds followed by ** are effectively reduced by 1.
h2. *One Handed or Hand and a Half Weapons:
One handed and hand and a half weapons may be wielded in two hands with the appropriate speed benefits, not to mention 11/2 str damage as well. Light and natural speed weapons cannot be swung in two hands, they are too small and already very light. A natural weapon is considered to attack as fast as you can swing your hand, therefore nothing can go faster than a natural speed (one attack per 3).
h2. Two Weapon Fighting and Weapon Speeds:
A character fighting with two weapons gains both extra attacks at the rate of the slower weapon, because of the concentration needed to place both attacks. As soon as the character is eligible for an extra attack based on his BAB and weapon speed, he is considered to have attained the BAB prereq for the relevant two weapon fighting feat.
h2. Double Weapons and Speed:
Double weapons are considered one handed weapons(speed 5), two of them; however, by wielding the weapon in two hands, the speed increment decreases as per the rule. This makes the ends of the double weapon function as light weapons(speed 4) and is the reason double weapons qualify both for strength and a half on damage, and light weapon status for two weapon fighting. If a weapon were created with hand and a half weapons(speed 6) as a double weapon, the heads of such a double weapon would only decrease to one handed weapons(speed 5) which necessitates the greater penalties associated with two weapon fighting and an overall lower attack speed.
Monsters with Multiple Attacks:
A monster with multiple attacks only benefits from weapon speed if he makes multiple attacks with the same natural weapon. For example a Druid’s high level wolf companion might attack at 8/5/2, but a normal bear with BAB 8 would attack at 8/3/3 (bite/claw/claw without multiattack). Normally, creatures do not have the training to attack effectively with their natural weapons multiple times, nor do characters who have changed shape.
At Base Attack Bonus 20 a character achieves the maximum number of attacks. For characters that do not reach a BAB 20 by 20th level, the epic bonus is considered to be part of their base attack until they achieve their maximum number of attacks. Thus, a 20th level fighter and a 30th level monk have the same BAB for the purpose of determining the number of attacks they have with a given weapon. The maximum number of attacks is limited only by the speed of the weapon being used. At most, 7 attacks with a light weapon in one hand(20/17/14/11/8/5/2).
Weapon Speeds and Monks:
Disregard the monk table and calculate attacks as follows:
Apply the penalty for flurry of blows (-2;-1 at 5th; 0 at 9th or higher)
Add the extra attack(s) at the highest base attack bonus (1 or 2 at 11th and higher)
Calculate the number of attacks according to the rules of a natural weapon speed.
A 20th level monk would attack as follows: 15/15/15/12/9/6/3
At 30th level, a monk reaches the pinnacle of attacks, swinging more than any other class can: 20/20/20/17/14/11/8/5/2
If a monk uses a weapon as part of a flurry of blows, he gains his extra attacks as normal, but he uses the base speed of the weapon in use. For example, a quarterstaff is a double weapon with a net speed of 4 when wielded in two hands, therefore the speed of the monks attacks would be 4, not the usual 3 a monk uses when fighting with his bare hands. If a monk were to use a nonstandard weapon such as a long sword the weapon speed would be 5, although the monk could conceivably wield the long sword in two hands most of the time to get the speed of 4 and strength and a half on damage rolls.
h2. Maximum Strength Bonus:
A small weapon can only benefit from a strength bonus up to its maximum base damage. If Varion (with a 4 damage, plus any other bonuses. Natural weapons do not suffer from this restriction. This damage cap only applies to the base strength taken once as compared to the total damage die. For example, Cunin has a strength score of 22+6 and uses a falchion in two hands. This nets a total damage bonus from strength of +9, but since 6 is not greater than 8 (the cap comes for 2d4, a falchions base damage dice) there is no problem. If at some point he were to gain a strength score of +9, he would still be limited to dealing +12 strength damage, not +13.
See the separate Houserules feats document.
The world includes Mithril, Adamantium, and other typical metals and ores according to the standard D&D campaign setting. Several non-typical metals may also be found.
Mithril: In addition to all of its canonical properties, mithril increases the speed of a weapon by 1 point because of its great lightness (to a minimum of ‘natural speed’). This only affects weapons of which the major portion is made of mithril. A spear, for example, would not show an increase in speed, but a bastard sword would.
Darkwood: Blackwood extends a lightness benefit as previously explained in the Mithril description to weapons and armor made mostly out of wood. An item such as a great axe should have both a mithril head and a blackwood haft to get the benefits previously described.
Eternium: Eternium benefits from all the bonuses of both mithril and adamantium. In other words, it has the hardness of adamantium (and can overcome DR/adamantium). and the lightness of mithril.
Armors: Armors made from eternium gain DR 1/- per initial weight catagory (light, medium, heavy before applying the lighter property as mithril) like adamantium, allow 1, +2, or +3). Finally, eternium can only be used to make metal armors (chain shirt, chainmail, breastplate, full plate, etc.)
Weapons: Eternium weapons have the hardness of adamantium, yet the lightness of mithril. Eternium weapons are almost beyond supernaturally sharp and quite inflexible, yet not brittle. Thus, the damage of any eternium weapon does double the base die. Hence, a dagger would deal 2d4 damage and a fullblade would deal 4d8 damage. This increase is adjusted after size, proficiency, and feats that affect the base damage die. They are also one point faster than normal due to their lightness, just like mithril weapons. This change in damage dice does not apply to blunt weapons.
Caveat: Eternium weapons are excruciatingly hard to make. Only a legendary dwarven forgemaster can successfully work the ore into the required shape and it requires a truly exceptional forge and heat that would kill a human smith to accomplish the task. However, it is the dream of many dwarves to face this challenge so time and space will be made for anyone who procures enough of the substance to forge. That is not to say that the price to do so does not remain prohibitive. The forgemaster can basically charge whatever he wants, but a minimum fee would be 1000 gp per hour of labor. As though that were not enough, the material is not to be had on the market for sale or murder. Every ounce of the substance values a conservative 100,000gp. At such prices, even a half pound dagger (using the weight of mithril) would cost 800,000gp in materials alone, not to mention forging costs and supplies for the forge. An eternium weapon only gains damage bonuses if the striking portion is sharp. Blunt weapons are not improved. Additionally, they are only significantly lighter if the majority of the weapon in made of metal. A spear, for example, would weigh the same, yet deal double its base damage die. For such a spear, a darkwood haft would make the weapon the desired weight.
Thuranium: Thuranium is an extremely flexible and durable compound found in fair quantities, but with little understood applications. When used as part of plate armor, it can boost the maximum Dex bonus 2 and lower the armor check penalty by 1. When used in bows it can effectively make sturdy compound bows with any conceivable strength rating. Working thuranium is difficult and all items made from it must be masterwork. Making an item that does not take advantage of thuraniums spring and flexibility creates an item no better than steel. Finally, the making of firearms require thuranium in their construction to be effective and relatively reliable.