House Rules

House Rules

Something of a holding page, e.g. till these things are worth their own stubs.

I think I’m probably only going to be writing wiki-items for things that are House Rules interpretations or departures from the book-rules… (We’ll see…)


Insubstantial’ — Halving all damage is crazy in a game where fights bog down into grind. Where I don’t just treat the Insub as having been figured into HPs already, Psychic still does Full (duh!); most non-standard damages Fire, Lightning, Necrotic (etc.?), and all Blasts and Bursts do 75%.
Surprise Roundsyes, I do allow Action Points in a Surprise Round. And the players can generally act in whatever order they choose — subject to being able to form a plan without breaking Stealth — instead of being constrained by an Initiative order. Mechanically it’s like they have a pre-Surprise Round in which they all Ready/Delay such that they can select the order of their turns in the actual Surprise Round.
(If they want to know what to do based on how high their Initiative is going to be for the next and subsequent rounds… I’ll think about it.) If they Delay on through, they can Take 20 on the subsequent Initiative roll.
As discussed on WotC forums here
Shooting-through — After H2 I propose to nix the rule allowing everyone to shoot through friendlies. If you want to shoot through someone or into a fight, holler, Ready your shot, and unleash it when they use a Minor-action to duck or sidestep within their space to create an opening for you. And I’m still thinking about letting aware targets duck and weave for 2 pts of Cover…
Shooting through is only a (yet another) case of saying Yes to unrealism to pander to players who want to have their cake and eat it, and to avoid complicated resolutions for people doing willfully stupid things. Is it a reaction to the similarly unrealistic Tanking principle (ultimately evolved from the hypothetical, apositional combat systems of text-based MU*s) which places your ally right in the way of the shot by design?
DaveTheGame had already put his finger on it back in 2009: D&D4e just isn’t as much fun for ranged combat as it is for mixing it up in the melee. (See Lessons from the Heroic Tier, at
Ranged combatants often have a Move Action free anyway, the Eladrin Wizard currently hardly uses his encounter-Teleport, etc. And I’ll think of something to make it up to him and the Warlock.
It may be slower if
everyone has to manoeuvre more carefully… But an occasional monster taking a pop at a ranged guy instead of schlocking into the naked meat-shield can surely only even out the Surge economy imbalance in the party.
Returning — D&D4e offer the ‘convenience’ that any item with a bonus that is thrown automatically returns to the hand of the thrower (in the same action, not even requiring a minor action to catch it, without fail and unopposably). In this game, weapons are not assumed to be Returning; only where the DM specifically says so.
Hit Points and Healing Surges — I’ve been happy for people to track their own status till now. But I think we all, not least me as GM, could do with a better overview of the party’s fortunes than we get when people occasionally mention how they’re doing. The characters themselves would surely be more aware of it. In future, therefore, I want to have a party roster with HPs and Surges on it publicly maintained.
Ritual Components — I was happy not to restrict Rituals, which are Cool!, by forcing you to inventorize your Components. D&D doesn’t insist on breaking them down into specifics like 10 x Eye of Newt etc. anyway, so it was no great loss… even if that meant the cost wasn’t necessarily even deducted from your GPs either, you b****rs!
But now I think this should get a bit of attention, and I will require the bookkeeping of Ritual components. Luckily (a) Elana can do a Bardic Ritual a day without components, and (b) the Mages of Saruun are happy to give you up to 700 gp’s worth of your 700 gp reward in Arcane components. Grab ’em while stocks last !


Ritual: Clan-brothers’ Succour
Spirit Companion: Brother Rabbit
Deity: Avandra

House Rules

The Fairy Ring in the Nentir Vale osric_of_o osric_of_o