Homebrew is the creation of one's own rules systems, or material for an existing system. (Note that soliciting ideas for homebrew is off topic for the site.) Not to be confused with the [house-rules] tag.

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11answers
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Techniques for making undead scary again

Undead used to be scary things: dead, rotting bodies seeking to devour all life, outnumbering their foes, and replacing their fallen with slain enemies. But nowadays players see them and think ...
21
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4answers
4k views

Punishing a player for instant-actioning

I GM a home-made D&D-style game which my friends and I play, and we had a scenario go as follows: After a player-character threw something at the wall, the players rolled a one and I was ...
19
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3answers
782 views

How can I make diseases non-trivial?

As noted here, diseases in 4e seem more trivial than I think they were intended: they rarely last more than one increment! What rules can I make/break, or what actions can I take, so that contracting ...
17
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7answers
1k views

How can I roll a character's age using only d6?

I'm making a simple, slightly comedic home-brew RPG where a lot of the characters' base stats are randomized for comedic effect. This includes the characters' age. (So you can have a ridiculously ...
17
votes
2answers
443 views

Incentivizing Player Betrayal?

I'm working on a game where the players have a competitive goal (hoarding as much money as possible) and there will eventually be a reckoning where the amount of money they have hoarded away will ...
16
votes
7answers
2k views

Is there an effect on player's reaction to treasure when raising the value of gold relative to other coins?

In fantasy games related to D&D the currency usually follows the 10 cp = 1sp, 10sp = 1gp pattern. This is convenient and fairly logical, but in my play throughs gold just didn't have much weight ...
13
votes
2answers
624 views

Game design process to create a White-Wolf-like setting?

I have noticed that there seems to be a pattern at work in most oWod/WoD products, which when followed results in settings with the following properties: Each new PC starts with many possible ...
13
votes
3answers
901 views

I need help with making a were tyrannosaurus PC in Pathfinder

I am a fairly new DM and I recently got some of my friends to start a campaign with me as DM using Pathfinder. One of the players has been really trying hard to make it an enjoyable adventure, as ...
12
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4answers
3k views

How to rule a permanently blind PC in D&D 4e?

One of my players wants to build a totally blind character, and so far as I can tell the system has no rules for it, despite coming close. Blinded is a condition that more accurately reflects having ...
12
votes
2answers
9k views

Guidelines for creating homebrew classes (base/PrCs)

Is there any (official or not) guidebook to the creation of classes, both prestige and base, that does not simply state what you must pick for a class (BaB, saves, concept, profficiences), but ...
12
votes
3answers
650 views

When adapting a setting to 13th Age, how to decide what is an Icon?

Like every body that ever read a good book and plays RPG you will want to make it into your next campaign setting. I am no different than most people. I'm aiming to adapt the setting of S. Erikson's ...
12
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3answers
656 views

Are there any low-magic 4e home-brew settings?

This question is in a sense related to "What RPGs treat magic as being common?" Aside from the WotC published setting of Dark Sun where magic is treated as something to be shunned, are there any ...
11
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2answers
313 views

Wealth in tremulus: insane or horrific?

Wealth in tremulus doesn't make sense to me. Its value increases exponentially (nice dinner costs 1 wealth point, an old car 3, chartering a plane 5), while its expenditure and earning is linear. So a ...
11
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2answers
3k views

Custom magic item creation standardization

I run a rather lighthearted campaign that contains a number of re-flavored elements, including items. For the most part since these are based on published items their actual value for sake of crafting ...
11
votes
6answers
368 views

Mechanical ways to handle dark power temptation

In many settings there are light and dark versions of powers. Dark force and light force in Star Wars, Defilers and Preservers in Dark Sun and so on. In this post I will use the term dark power for ...
10
votes
4answers
858 views

Resources for Creating a Home-Brewed Alchemy System Using Real World Herbs?

I am in the preliminary steps of creating an Herb-gathering / Alchemy system for my OSR game. I will be using real world herbs, as I feel that's more interesting than any list of fantasy herbs that I ...
10
votes
3answers
646 views

Players rolling all of the dice in D&D 4th Ed

I was looking at the variant rules listed in the Unearthed Arcana, and noticed one that I think could work pretty well in 4th Ed. Players Roll All The Dice Basically it turns the monster's attack ...
10
votes
2answers
183 views

How can I implement legacies for PCs?

I'm starting a new campaign with two new players, and one of the senior players requested to have her new character be the offspring of her first character (one I didn't DM). Then my other senior ...
9
votes
3answers
2k views

What Resources Are Available For Poison?

I find myself stopped up short in my efforts to create a major...well, not antagonist, but let us call him a very shady ally, for my PCs. The individual in question, Mykael the Grinner, is the master ...
9
votes
2answers
359 views

How can I turn invisible?

I'm learning DFRPG, having no prior experience with the FATE system. One thing I really like is the idea that we can --and should-- create our own stunts and powers... but I'm not sure I've really got ...
9
votes
1answer
250 views

How to build a flexible and scalable system for PCs' NPC organizations? [closed]

Background: I am preparing to run a campaign using Dark Heresy Second Edition. Although this is nominally an investigative game, several key non-combat mechanical systems are either anemic or missing ...
9
votes
1answer
702 views

How can I adapt Avatar: The last airbender to an Exalted game?

I'm a massive fan of Avatar: the Last Airbender, and I'd love to be able to run it as a game with people. Possibly not with an Avatar, but certainly benders. Here are some examples of the elemental ...
9
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0answers
89 views

How to effectively combine Ars Magica's Agent rules with Reign's Company rules?

This question was originally posed hypothetically in this Answer and ensuing comments. I am attempting to do something very similar to this as seen in this Question. In that question I am looking ...
8
votes
7answers
864 views

How do I set the base price in a barter system?

I'm currently working on a homebrew system and one concept I was intending to incorperate is that there is no in-game currency; items are traded using a barter system. The thing is, how do I set a ...
8
votes
5answers
1k views

Rulesets to make magic more unpredictable and dangerous?

I am considering starting a Pathfinder game, however before I do this I would like to brew-up some house-rules on the use of magic for a "low-magic" setting (think Conan or A Song of Ice and Fire) ...
8
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4answers
2k views

Alternate, 2H, non-double use of quarterstaff?

I understand usually a quarterstaff is usually treated as a double weapon with 1d6/1d6 - however it seems like regripping it should allow use as a two handed weapon using only one end to get more out ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

RPG sytem which is based on character's character not stats

I read a review of a system to do with the walking dead, last week or so, but I have lost the reference to it. It was a system which rather than using strength, dexterity etc. used motivations and ...
8
votes
4answers
2k views

Are there good tools for managing custom (homebrew) classes?

The D&D 4e character builder works OK for the official classes, but doesn't seem to have much support for anything custom. Are there good tools for managing characters with custom (homebrew) ...
8
votes
2answers
350 views

How could you adapt the Vitality and Wound Points system from Unearthed Arcana to the 4th ed rules?

Inspired by this answer to a question: How could you adapt the Vitality and Wound Points system from Unearthed Arcana to the 4th ed rules. What major changes would you need to make?
8
votes
1answer
319 views

To what extent is reskinning acceptable?

At what point does reskinning become gamebreaking? If a player desperately wants to swap out a Force keyword for Fire, is that going to destroy the combat system? I know there's a precedent for it ...
8
votes
2answers
370 views

Is this fix to the Autumn Mantle roughly equivalent to the other Seasonal mantles?

My group and I firmly consider the Autumn Court's Mantle (see Changeling: the Lost) to be both sub-par and insulting in its mechanical implementation, especially considering that Autumn, as the Court ...
8
votes
0answers
139 views

What are the major differences between Dream and Vocation versions of Princess: the Hopeful?

What are the major differences in setting, themes, approach and general mechanics between the two versions of Princess: the Hopeful fansplat? Both Dream and Vocation books appear robust and well ...
7
votes
5answers
749 views

Does the game break if a character can't fail Appraise skill checks?

I'm homebrewing a class, and at about character level 14 I'm considering granting the class the following special ability: Appraise Anything (Ex): The creature's Appraise skill check result always ...
7
votes
4answers
726 views

How much custom content is too much

So, I'm a relatively new GM (having only run a quick foray into the Tomb of Horrors for fun) and I've got an idea for a city-based custom campaign. I feel pretty good about my story telling abilities ...
7
votes
3answers
716 views

Does D&D 4e have a Lizardfolk as a playable, PC race?

There are many entries in the Monster Manual for Lizardfolk, but I have yet to find a good piece of literature describing how to play them as a player race. If necessary I will create it from scratch, ...
7
votes
1answer
494 views

Is there a specific gauntlet to test home-brewed character classes?

Recently I've been trying to play test my custom character class by running it through a dungeon I developed and ran for a party last year. The class focuses around the idea of collecting monster ...
6
votes
5answers
1k views

How do I design well-balanced homebrew items?

I have previously run into issues with homebrew items throwing off the balance of my game, and I'm trying to anticipate any issues I might run into by giving my players certain items. My players enjoy ...
6
votes
2answers
5k views

Race Creation/Modification in D&D 3.5

I'm trying to create a set of races, based largely on the classic fantasy races of Man, Elf, Dwarf (and Gnome, but I don't consider that to be a 'classic' fantasy race). I'm using 3.5 rules, and the ...
6
votes
4answers
222 views

What systems contain Multiple Caster or Combined Casting rules? [closed]

In the process of creating a homebrew system, I have run into the problem of my players wanting to be able to combine their spellcasting prowess in a show of superiority and might ( and perhaps a bit ...
6
votes
4answers
413 views

Is there a system with hit locations where missing hits another location?

This is my first time asking a question. I have only ever played D&D and I am now looking for a very different type of system. My goal is to have a realistic system to use for a Zombie one-shot. ...
6
votes
3answers
490 views

What precedent is there for my homebrew “skill” concept?

I'm starting to use a skill-like mechanic for my NPCs which is kind of a cross between modes and the aspects only option. I want to know what systems have used a feature like this, so I can build on ...
6
votes
5answers
570 views

Adding an explosive dice mechanic to the One Roll Engine

A friend of mine is interested in adding an explosive mechanic to the One Roll Engine for his home-brew system. This mechanic is to provide for virtually impossible feats and remarkable failures. ...
6
votes
2answers
176 views

Is there any exisiting feature similar to this (poorly worded?) homebrew?

I'm working with an homebrew artifact from this file, page 34, but the way its (poorly worded?) powers work baffles me. The artifact is a morning star, but it has an attack without the Weapon keyword ...
6
votes
1answer
499 views

What guides and resources exist for creating custom classes in Dungeon World?

I already own and have access to the Dungeon World book/manual and I've read and will refer to the Advanced Delving section. Beyond that however I'm looking for any other guidelines and tips when ...
6
votes
1answer
138 views

Resource/Methods for “leveling” spells from the Harry Potter Universe?

I'm playing a homebrew version of "Broomstix" with my nephews and am looking for a resource that doesn't just list all the Harry Potter universe spells and their functions but also lists the ...
6
votes
2answers
204 views

What tool(s) have you used to manage spell lists, especially in a home-brew?

There are a couple of great questions on this site about tools to manage campaign notes. I'm looking for something more specific; it may not exist. What tool or tools have you used to keep track of ...
6
votes
1answer
637 views

XP System: Class and Character Level Separated, with XP spent determining level

I am looking for suggestions for an RPG system that handles character level and class level tracked separately. Ideally I would like to find something that does this based on XP spent. For context, ...
6
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0answers
231 views

Today, War (domain) changes [closed]

I am running a war cleric, but my DM and I have noticed a problem with the War domain. The official War domain is as follows: War Free Martial Weapon Proficiency with deity’s favored weapon ...
6
votes
2answers
195 views

Would this Conjure Dragons spell be too powerful?

Would this homebrewed spell for dragon-themed conjurers be too powerful? It is a variant of conjure animals / conjure minor elementals / conjure woodland beings but dragon-themed. This is what I have ...
5
votes
4answers
498 views

Are there homebrew fix classes or rules that put Fighting types and Roguish types into Tier 1?

See the question on what character tiers are if you don't understand this. Basically, I'm fine with Tier 1 classes being able to do all their tricks; a fun game can be had that way. What I'm not ...