House rules are small fan created additions and replacements to core rules in a rules set. In most cases, they are not officially sanctioned by the designer, in contrast to optional rules. For substantial new material and rules subsystems, use the [homebrew] tag instead.

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89
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20answers
5k views

How do you help players not focus on the rules?

Background - My Group's Gaming Style When I GM, I run games loosely from a rules standpoint, and do not feel bound to adhere to what the rulebook says when it doesn't make sense in a given situation. ...
15
votes
3answers
2k views

What Are Freedom of Movement's Limits?

What conditions and effects does the spell freedom of movement [abjur] (PH 233) overcome? I want a fair, reasonable, and consistent method to determine what spells and conditions are overcome by the ...
60
votes
12answers
11k views

3d6 vs a d20: What is the effect of a different probability curve?

What is the effect on game play of replacing d20 rolls with 3d6 rolls in a D&D 4e campaign? I started thinking about this after reading this question where the example was given of playing a d20 ...
15
votes
3answers
2k views

How can I convert D&D Next Saving Throws into Defences?

In D&D 5, the saving throws for spells has the following formula: The DC is set to 8 + prof bonus + magical stat bonus. The target then makes a saving throw, adding their stat bonus and hoping ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

Firearms for DnD

My DM would like to run a DnD adventure set in 1930s-tech era, replacing technology with magic-punk stuff. He's pulling a lot from Eberron. Guns will exist, however, and he's just "renaming" bows ...
15
votes
3answers
718 views

What effects do critical and fumble tables have on D&D 3.5?

Just getting some extra damage, and just missing, seem pretty boring. A lot of people like to spruce things up by having critical hits and natural-1 fumbles result in a roll on a special table, which ...
3
votes
3answers
1k views

Writing a better Weapon Focus feat

Last time a played D&D it was 3.0, and I remember thinking the Weapon Focus feat is kind of dull, but it's sometimes a prerequisite for more advanced feats. So I would like to rewrite it ...
6
votes
5answers
5k views

Rules for increasing ability scores in Basic D&D?

Are there any rules (house or otherwise) for increasing ability scores after character creation in Basic D&D or any of its retro clones? (Other than magic items or wishes.) When we generated ...
4
votes
4answers
940 views

How to discourage players from roleplaying out of their alignment when using a 3.5e alignment system in a 4e game?

My GM would like to implement the 3.5e grid-based alignment system in his 4th edition game. He would also like to implement better penalties for not playing within your alignment. I understand that ...
11
votes
4answers
4k views

Suggested house-rules for Pathfinder one-on-one storytelling

I'll introduce myself quickly. Played a lot of RPG in teens; mostly AD&D for fantasy, but also Call of Cthulhu and Cyberpunk for those other settings. I lived kind of remote, so all we played was ...
22
votes
4answers
2k views

Balancing Spellcasters; Spontaneous Casters versus Prepared Casters

So ask any optimizer and they'll almost always tell you the same thing: in 3.5 classes that prepare spells are better than spontaneous spellcasters. It's generally not thought of as even a contest. ...
16
votes
9answers
580 views

What are the pros, cons, and hitches of having only the players roll dice?

I ran a variant of DnD3.5 a few years a go with this house rule Player Only Rolls. The basic of the idea was that the referee never rolls at all. The players roll to attack vers the creatures AC. They ...
11
votes
3answers
555 views

Where does a traveler arrive when a planar location's unspecified?

When a creature is successfully targeted by an effect that transports the creature to another plane but no location on that plane is specified, where does the creature arrive? If the plane is the ...
10
votes
3answers
774 views

Is it possible to substitute actual items for the material components in spells?

Generally speaking, material components and focus objects for spells (or at least, the ones without costs listed) are there purely for flavour and the occasional lame joke (like using fur and an amber ...
7
votes
1answer
490 views

Making monks better but not broken

I am about to run a campaign where 2 of the 3 PCs are monk-based classes. They will be starting at level 10 and I expect the campaign to run till 15 or 16. One is a Monk 2/ Sorcerer 4/ Enlightened ...
3
votes
3answers
262 views

House rules for making specific components matter for spells, magical and mundane item creation? [closed]

I started getting back into D&D edition 3.5 a few weeks ago as a DM. I do not like the generalizations in which are written into the magical item creation. I am trying to make a more specific ...
18
votes
3answers
676 views

How to houserule merits?

Merits as a system does not seem to be well balanced. Some merits (such as resources 1) seem like they should be mandatory (or a flaw to not have them). Other merits such as housing ones (haven, ...
13
votes
3answers
930 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
votes
2answers
558 views

What are the implications of using AC rolls for defense?

I was thinking about AC, attacks, and how to make it slightly easier on a DM, and more interactive for players. The idea I came up with was to reverse AC rolls. To do this, a player's AC now becomes ...
8
votes
2answers
834 views

Would adding Necromancy spells to the Druid's spell list break anything?

I am new to D&D and will be starting with a group of other beginners in a few days. We got ourselves 5e and will have a four-character group: a rogue GMPC, a barbarian, a paladin and a wizard (or ...
7
votes
3answers
608 views

Dex-to-damage houserule to make monk more viable?

I recently started running a Pathfinder campaign with some friends. Two of the players are pretty experienced, two are brand new, and this is my first time DM'ing. One of the new players is playing a ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

How do you improve Death Saves for the character?

I don't know if my group is particularly incompetent in combat or if its our own feckless dice at fault, but we frequently find ourselves locked in desperate combat, with multiple members of the party ...
3
votes
1answer
332 views

Any house-rule for buying negative qualities after character creation?

During character creation, Shadowrun 4E allows player to buy negative qualities such as Infirm in exchange for additional Build Points. Some negative qualities are heavily background-related, so I ...
1
vote
2answers
428 views

Would it be OK to allow Sublime Chord to smooth and join both castings?

Sublime Chord has two spell lists and two separate tables of spells per day. Let's assume Bard 10 / Chord 5 for a moment: Per day Spell level 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Bard 3 3 ...