Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Averlorn House Rules and Clarifications for B/X D&D UPDATED 1/17

Here are the current house rules that we're using in our B/X + AD&D (LL/AEC is our clone of choice) game. We've now move beyond the village of Hommlet and are exploring the area.

ABILITIES: Create 3 or 4 characters by rolling 4d6 drop the lowest. Choose the best set of stats and retire the other characters. Abilities for Prime Reqs may be adjusted as per p. 7 LL Choosing a Class. This approach that produces relatively heroic OD&D characters, yet makes Rangers, Paladins and others quite rare and "fun to shoot for" when rolling up a new dude. Characters with a total of “0” in ability bonuses may be considered hopeless and re-rolled.

HIT DIE: Basic Hit Dice as per AEC

HP AT FIRST LEVEL: Reroll 1s & 2s for a primary character at first level. After that reroll 1s at every level.

SECONDARY SKILLS: Pick 1 or roll 2. Alternatively, ignore this and your PC had a very average upbringing and began life as a wandering adventurer at an early age

SIMPLE ALIGNMENT: You can have Good or Neutral tendencies, but keeping it simple is cool.

RACE AS CLASS: Dwarf, Elf, or Halfling can use either option (essentially choosing a B/X character or a 1e AD&D character). NPCs, hirelings, etc. are almost always racial class for simplicity.

DEATH AT 0 FOR EVERYONE BUT...: PCs, NPCs, Boss Monsters, Big Scaries, etc. (let's call 'em Star Players) get a chance to hang in there via the Death & Dismemberment roll (we'll use my own chart from Moog with death usually occurring at -10, thus allowing your friends time to save you). Recovery times for nasty wounds may be greatly reduced by various healing spells. Cure Serious for instance will completely heal a broken limb.

NO SHIELDS FOR ARCANE CASTERS: Arcane spell casters need to travel light, hands at the ready to cast, etc. This brings some degree of balance to the Elf class.

VARIABLE COMBAT DAMAGE: As per the B/X Companion, p 24, basically, use the weapon you find to be most fluffy, damage is determined by class and weapon size.

WEAPON SPECIALIZATION: The Fighter Column gains weapon spec at 2nd level, then again at 7th level but may not double specialize. One of the weapons chosen MUST be a cultural weapon detailed in the Player's Guide (or ask your DM). Bonus for all weapon spec is +1/+0.

SET SPEAR & LANCE ABILITY: As per RC all members of the Fighting Column may do this though halflings may not use the lance attack.

FIGHTER COMBAT OPTIONS: As per RC, kicks in at relatively high level, 12th for most of the Fighting Column, 11th for Elf and Halfling class.

THE FIGHTING COLUMN MAY CLEAVE: Swinging again is fun and heroic in HtH, though only once per round and you must be in range. Mooks are 1hd or less, at 5th level, 1+ hd creatures get added to the list. At name level, you may cleave a number of time per round equal to 1+ your DEX bonus.

20 IS A CRIT FOR STAR PLAYERS: Max Damage. 1s always miss and always fail a saving throw.

DWARF, ELF & HALFLING CLASS: switch over to the RC level system (and benefits therein) once they achieve a level beyond their LL progression.

HIGHER LEVELS FOR DEMIHUMANS: May advance beyond LL AEC limits at a 50% penalty to bonus points, applied BEFORE any bonus from Prime Req.

RITUAL SPELLCASTING: From Beyond The Black Gate 2010 Compendium, available to both divine and arcane casters.

Like peanut butter and jelly, dwarves may use them and in the hands of a dwarf, it functions as a Bastard Sword.

TWO-WEAPON FIGHTING: +1 to hit and you will hit with whichever weapon you consider to be your main weapon (stating so at the beginning of combat)

TWO-HANDED WEAPON: +1 Damage, strikes last when using individual initiative.

LEVEL DRAINING: New save each day to remove a lost level.

IDENTIFY SPELL: All wizards have this one and after handling an item for a day, they discern all of its properties. The Elf class has some ability here as well needing a 5 or 6 on a d6 and may try on subsequent days if they fail to identify the item.

CHARGING: You need at least 10 feet of space, straight line required and a clear path to your target. You receive +2/+2 and lose your Dex bonus to AC, or a flat -2 whichever is higher. Both penalties and bonuses last until the start of your next action.

MOVING PAST READIED OPPONENTS: Isn't really supported in the rules. Doing so triggers an attack from enemies just as if you'd fully retreated from combat (including the bonus). You may avoid this by making a Dex roll on 4d6 (your Dex stat or less).

DECLARING ACTIONS: Only spellcasting need be announced and you do not have to name the spell until you cast it it. Losing the spell due to combat damage causes you to lose a spell of your choice.

MOVEMENT: Simple movement here. All PCs can move 30 feet in a combat round, double that if they charge or hustle (which is simply a move and do nothing else sort of action). Running has its own rules, but for our purposes in combat, you run at either 120' (leather or less), 90' (chain or less), or 60' (heavier than chain mail) depending on your armor.

ENCUMBRANCE: Simple rules here. Your Max load is 160 pounds and coinage weighs very little in our game. Carrying over 100 pounds of loot will reduce your combat speed to 20 feet and your run to 60'.