House Rules

There aren't too many special rules to begin with. I will post them here as they get added (probably because of situations that occur while playing). If you have any questions on rules that you want clarified outside of game time, send me an email and I’ll update this page. Also feel free to comment on these rules as well. I want to make sure we all have a fun time with them.

1.             Item prices (mundane and magical) listed in source material are base prices only and may vary wildly. Generally, you can expect a price to be 25% higher than the base price listed for the more uncommon items and up to 50% higher or more for unusual items. This can be modified by using the conversational skills (diplomacy being the main one, intimidate may work on occasion) and by situational modifiers. For character creation, the prices are what is listed in the source material (or what’s listed on the character creation page under special pricing.

2.             The Neverwinter setting as written is in the Forgotten Realms of 4th edition, which has it partially destroyed by the Spellplague. In 4th edition characters can voluntarily expose themselves to the Spellplague to gain spellscars (which is a form of multiclassing). Since Pathfinder doesn’t have anything like this, Spellscars are something no on wants to get – they are a very harmful, very magical, and very hard to get rid of disease (i.e. lycanthropy, vampirism) that will most likely end in a gruesome death. The Spellplague still does exist, but is much more dangerous and ominous.

3.             Pathfinder character levels and class levels: This campaign is using a modified version of the D&D 4th Edition Tomb of Horrors as a part of the story arc. It assumes that characters can attain 30th level. While I could scale the encounters to fit within a 20 level limit, I prefer to have the last sections of the adventure reflect a truly epic conflict and what better way than to have characters of epic proportions. Besides, rewriting the infamous Acererak to be like a common Balor or Solar just doesn't give him the proper respect that he deserves. So here are the alterations I’m implementing:
  • I'm treating the 20th level cap as a class level cap only and there is no character level cap. This means that a character can reach 20th level in his/her favored class and reach 10th level in a prestige class or two, or 20th level in a second class, etc.
  • We will be using the medium experience point totals for advancement.
  • After 20th level, the amount of experience points needed to gain a level will be a constant 1,100,00 points per level. 
4.             Hit points per level after 1st level are rolled but will be at least 60% of the die. So for instance, if your hit die is a d10 – the minimum hit points you’d get is 6 even if you rolled a 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5.

5.             Critical Hits and Fumbles:   Remember the days (or maybe you don’t) when a natural twenty on an attack role could mean that you just cut off the villain’s sword hand? Or when a 1 resulted in you firing your arrow into your own foot? Well I do and I’m going to bring that back to this campaign. I've dug out my old I.C.E. critical hits and fumble tables. I’d like to use them to add a bit of spice to the randomness of combat. Roll a 1 and automatically missing your target is OK, but leaves out the suspense of something like accidentally hitting one of your party members, or tripping and falling, or pulling a groin muscle. Likewise, it’s always great to do max damage plus the critical bonus, but it’s even better when you decapitate that monster who normally has 1,000 hit points!
  • A couple of notes on this: The critical hit and fumble tables are also random events, using a d100 to come up with a result. Generally the lower the roll, the less extra stuff happens. Critical hits will still cause at least the max damage plus weapon critical bonus (a roll of 1 on the critical table results in no extra damage, while a very high roll will turn your opponent into a stain on the walls, floor, and possibly the ceiling too).
  • I'll be using those same tables when the monsters are attacking the party as well. What's good for the goose is good for the gander as they say (although I'm not sure who 'they' are).
6.             Spell Critical Hits: Natural 20s rolled for ranged touch attack type spells (scorching ray, acid arrow, etc) count as a critical hit. For spells the damage and/or effect will be maximized instead of rolling on the critical hit tables.
7.             Crafting Rules: Any character that has at least 1 rank in either Craft (armor) or Craft (weapons) is considered to have at least an equal amount of skill in forging mundane objects via Craft (blacksmithing) skill checks, as the manufacturing of both armor and/or weaponry is a more advanced skill. Additionally, if a character has both armor and weapon skills at differing ranks, then they use whichever is higher for their Craft (blacksmithing) skill checks. This is taken from Kevin’s post and though it hasn’t been an issue in our game yet, I wanted to include it. Here are the links to the files on Google Docs. The text is basically many pages long so I didn’t want to clutter the site up with them.

8.             Leadership Feat: The Leadership feat will be required to take for anyone that wants to flesh-out their settlements, castles, temples, compounds, etc. We will be using the normal leadership feat rules to determine the level of cohorts and number and level of followers. The only difference will be that no cohort will be coming along on adventures with the rest of the PCs; we simply have too many PCs to supplement you guys with NPC cohorts. Until the leadership feat is taken, any settlements, etc. will remain nebulous and something that we just refer to on occasion in passing. For the cohorts, pleases decide what race, sex, and class you would like him/her to be. I will create the cohort and equip them.

9.            In-Character Rewards System:
Lately, our Pathfinder game sessions have be plagued with far too many interruptions. Several times over the past couple of years, both Chris and I have raised this issue before the group; however, to date we have not managed to obtain any lasting results. While we do know that Pathfinder is a game, and we are gathering together to play and "escape from reality" for a short time; that doesn't mean that such derailing habits aren't wasting other people’s time.
So, in light of recent events and several player complaints related to the amount of idle chat and cross-talking that is occurring during the game, Chris and I have put our heads together in an effort to come up with a new "table-side" policy that we hope will help to convince each player to remain "in character" and limit the number of distractions. To combat this unfavorable behavior, we decided on sort of "Reward System" to promote better play habits and encourage each player to remain "in character" as much as possible.
First, to signify the player's current status with regard to remaining "in character", the GM will hand out a "token" of sorts at the beginning each play session. If at the end of the night the player still has the token, then they can add an "XP bonus" to their character. This "in character" XP bonus won't be a large amount, but it will be noticeable over time. We have settled on an XP bonus of 10 times the character's level.
Naturally, a player that constantly deviates from their "in character" mindset will have to forfeit their token. In all fairness, we are going to give two warnings (possibly reducing this down to one if the player consistently stretches this) before they lose the token. After all, we are not perfect and we are all guilty of cross-talk at one point or another.
To "sweeten the pot" further as well as promote long term change, we are also going to offer a "special boon" for players that have managed to maintain a run of 5 consecutive sessions that they have managed to retain their "token" Once a player has reached this point, they will be able to select one boon from the following list for their current character. Unlike a hero point, this bonus is set once it is selected.
  • A free re-roll of any single dice, but you must accept the new roll even if it is worse (similar to a hero point, but doesn't count toward their limit of 3).
  • A one time 5% reduction in the purchase price of a single item (can be stacked up to a maximum of 25%).
  • A one time ability to call upon a Divine Favor. This favor manifests in the form of granting one weapon currently held in your hands the ability to bypass any one type of DR for one minute (cold, iron, silver, etc.).
  • A one time +5 (if announced before the roll) or +2 (after the roll is made) bonus to a skill check of the player's choice (not attck, save, CMB, etc.).
  • A one time +5 (if announced before the roll) or +2 (after the roll is made) bonus to a saving throw of the player's choice
  • One free casting of a single spell from your class's spell list (this spell must be one level lower than your highest possible spell level).
  • One free casting of a single spell from any spell list (this spell must be two levels lower than your current highest possible spell level).
  • A one time +5 (if announced before the roll) or +2 (after the roll is made) bonus to one critical severity check.
  • A one time addition of 10 temporary hit points (so if someone goes below 0, they could add the 10 temp points to stay above 0 and possibly save themselves).
  • A one time reversal of a temporary condition that is currently affecting the character (i.e. bleed, confusion, fatigue, poison, etc.) However, diseases and conditions with a permanent duration cannot be reversed.
We also have a boon, or two, that would require a run of 10 consecutive tokens (Obtained only by abstaining from their boon for the first 5):
  • A one time automatic 20 on any d20 roll (attack, concentration, save, skill, etc.).
  • A free hero point. This bonus hero point will stack with the character's others, granting them a maximum of 4 (3 for leveling and 1 via this boon). If the character has the hero's Fortune feat, then they may gain this boon twice for a total of 7 (5 via leveling and 2 via this boon).
Here is a short list of some of the disruptive habits that directly influence the flow of the game, and I know that we have all been guilty of them at some point or another:

  • The telling of stories that have nothing to do with the player's current character and their actions.
  • Playing/sharing of pictures and/or videos around the table.
  • Interrupting of another player's turn to suggest courses of action on battle tactics.