Optional Systems House Rules

Optional Systems in Use

  • Proficiencies (Weapon and Non-weapon)
  • Weapon Styles (C&T)1
  • Weapon Specialization and Mastery (including expertise and weapon groups) (C&T)
  • Critical Hits: Additional attacks (DMG)2
  • Parrying (DMG)

Common Optional Systems not in Use

  • Optional Infravision (DMG)
  • Attack Options (C&T)
  • Dueling (C&T)
  • Basically everything from Skills and Powers
  • Signature Spells (S&M)3
  • Spell Components (PHB)4 (Some very powerful spells may still require some monetary sacrifice)
  • Spell Point Systems (S&M)
  • Spell Critical Strikes (S&M)
  • Max Spells Known (PHB)

House Rules

Construction Rules/Costs: We are using the building system from A Magical Society for construction. Total cost however will be 1/10th of the listed price.

Starting Languages: You character may to start with a number of bonus languages equal to number granted by your intelligence. You gain these languages for free (you do not have to spend NWP slots for them) and you still gain your bonus language modifier to your starting number of NWP. You may use NWP slots to attain more languages. Also you are assumed to be able to read/write any language you can speak as long as your Intelligence is over 9.

Modified Combat System: While I would prefer not to use the optional Combat and Tactics battle grid system at all the nature of the online VTT virtually requires it in some form. Because of that we will use a heavily simplified version of the C&T combat system. First, we will use the 5 foot squares with the reduced round period. Thus you can move your movement rate in squares in a round as a full move. Actions will be defined by the C&T combat system but we will NOT use their initiative system. Facing also will not be a factor due to the lack of facing on Roll20 tokens. Fatigue won’t be calculated. Attacks of Opportunity will be granted via the PHB’s system (basically only when fleeing) instead of the C&T system. Knockdowns won’t be used. Simplified encumbrance will be used (don’t abuse it). Battle tactics are allowed but likely not of much use to the PCs.

Using Ranged Weapons in Melee: How this is handled outside of C&T is not really explained anywhere. Probably because under the way combat works in the PHB it is simply just not logically possible. In melee you are expected to be defending yourself from attacks which with a comparatively delicate ranged weapon isn’t feasible. Nor really is getting the time to take good aim even with a thrown weapon. However, there are circumstances where this might be the only option so I’ve decided that the best rule for how to handle actually isn’t in a rulebook at all but is in the Baldur’s Gate computer game. Attacking with a ranged weapon in Melee requires you to take a -8 modifier to your attack and those attacking you get a +4 modifier to hit you.

Regional Fighting Style: Characters from the Moonsea, or whom were trained by someone who knew it, may take specialization in the style of Moonsea Rumble. An unarmed fighting style from that region.

Demi-Human Advancement: A combination of optional rules for demi-human advancement will be used. Demi-humans will we be able to advance unhindered up to the racial level limit modified by their primary ability (table 8 of the DMG summarized below) and from then on must earn double the experience to level beyond that. When calculating the modifier for a class with multiple primary abilities characters may use the highest ability score that fits that description; this counters the optional rule description in the DMG.

Ability Score Additional Level(s)
14-15 +1
16-17 +2
18 +3
19+ +4

1 C&T = Player’s Optional: Combat and Tactics

2 DMG = Dungeon Master Guide

3 S&M = Player’s Optional: Spells and Magic

4 Player’s Handbook

Optional Systems House Rules

Dove's Dalelands Campaign Dove_de_Domo_Phoenix