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Thread: House rules and general things

  1. #21


    A band of adventurers sneaks up on a bandit camp, springing from the trees to attack them. A gelatinous cube glides down a dungeon passage, unnoticed by the adventurers until the cube engulfs one of them. In these situations, one side of the battle gains surprise over the other.

    The GM determines who might be surprised. If neither side tries to be stealthy, they automatically notice each other. Otherwise, the GM compares the Dexterity (Stealth) checks of anyone hiding with the passive Wisdom (Perception) score of each creature on the opposing side. Any character or monster that doesn't notice a threat is surprised at the start of the encounter.

    To me, this revolves around noticing a threat. Assuming that the group passes stealth checks, here are my rules to determine whether the surprised party essentially loses a round due to the surprised condition.

    If the enemy knows of no threat in the area and stealth beats perception, they are surprised. Examples would be: breaking into an inn room and attacking someone in their sleep; a well laid out ambush where no threat was known in the area.

    In the enemy knows of a general threat in the area but hasn't seen it, they individually get a wisdom save to avoid the surprised condition. Examples include: a convoy going through "dead man's pass", a notorious ambush spot; finding fresh orc tracks in an area, and then being ambushed by orcs hours later; entering the cave of a bear with fresh tracks from a mother bear... and finding a stealthy father bear. The wisdom save for this is DC 10 if the creature type is the same as the known threat (beast known threat and attacked by a beast). The DC is 15 if the threat type is different than the known threat (bear known threat, but attacked by a dragon). Modifiers may decrease this if more specifics are known about the threat to lessen the chance of surprise. Again, the stealth check must overcome perception for this to come into play.

    A known, seen threat in an area. The group is clearly on alert to a known threat, even if they aren't sure exactly when the attack will come. Examples: Predzar, the rhakshasa that cannot be detected, is appearing to attack you, and then disappear. He reappears 10 minutes later and repeats this process. After the initial attack, further attacks would fall here. Another example is chasing a known enemy into another unknown threat. The wisdom save is still DC 10 or 15 as detailed in the general threat, but it is rolled with advantage. Modifiers may decrease this if more specifics are known about the threat to lessen the chance of surprise. Again, the stealth check must overcome perception for this to come into play.

    Failed saves mean that that the following surprised "condition" applies for one round:

    If you're surprised, you can't move or take an action on your first turn of the combat, and you can't take a reaction until that turn ends. A member of a group can be surprised even if the other members aren't.

  2. #22


    Spell radius effects.

    All radius spells have 5' added to them to make it easier for players to calculate at least the horizontal/vertical range on spells.

    Which of the following monsters is in/outside the fireball? Some are obvious. Some, not so much.

    If a hex is completely inside the radius of the spell (0706), it is effected by the spell. What about the creatures that are partially in the sphere (0605, 1003, etc)? I will roll a 50/50 chance assigning each of them in or outside of it. If I roll "in" they get full effect. If I roll "out" they are completely missed by it. It is possible that some right next to others will be hit while others are missed.

    Some will be a judgement call. 0704, 0804, 0903 will likely be in since almost the whole cell is inside the radius. Similarly I would say 0703 is "out".

    This isn't perfect, but it's my best guess on how to mix D&D, hexes, and spell radius effects.
    Last edited by zebsen; 06-18-2019 at 03:10 PM.

  3. #23


    Mastercrafted weapons are +1 to hit and +0 to damage. I've stated it before, but don't have it listed in the HR section.

  4. #24


    For the Xanthar fort battle:

    From the tree line to the first 25' south of it, it is rough terrain. No cover bonus. No concealment. You can hide behind a tree for half cover, but your horse is exposed.

    From 30-55' south of the tree line, all ranged shots going both ways get half cover bonus. Perception rolls looking through 30-55' of dense forest (going both ways) get a -2 penalty. Again, rough terrain.

    From 60-85' south of the tree line, all ranged shots going both ways get a 3/4 cover bonus. Perception rolls looking through 60-85' of dense forest (going both ways) get a -5 penalty. Again, rough terrain.

    You can't see beyond 90' in a dense forest. The target gets total cover bonus. And yes, rough terrain.

    North of the tree line is normal movement (no rough terrain), no perception or cover bonus. The area has been completely cleared of foliage.

  5. #25



    You get fame for accomplishing major events. Clearing a warehouse of bugbears doesn’t result in fame. Saving a halfling village that has been turned to stone though, does. So far here is how much fame you’ve earned:
    Returning Sirrion to the world: 5 points
    Returning Branchala to the world: 5 points
    Saving the Burrows: 5 points
    Clearing of the fort outside Xanthar and reuniting it with the other cities: 5 points
    Points are earned as the Sentinels. I’m not going to add/subtract points for those joining the group later in the game.

    Fame here will be an EXP multiplier. Your fame is 20 points, which earns you 20% bonus EXP on everything moving forward. I may do more with this as time goes on, but for now, that is what it equates to.

  6. #26


    The Unnamed Fort

    After acquiring the fort, you get a monthly income. The income is related to the amount of goods that flow safely through the fort. The amount of goods that flow through the fort is related to several factors, but the primary factor involves what trade routes are re-opened.

    Below lists the base amount of money that the fort will get each month based on the trade routes opened. These numbers can change based on world events.
    Xanthar: 2500 GP (potential)
    Alliance: 1000 GP
    Burrows: 1500 GP
    Etoile: 2000 GP (potential)
    Rhagmur: 2000 GP (potential)
    Mistmoor: 2000 GP (potential)

    The total base income collected if all routes are open is 10,000 GP.

    Your negotiated ownership of the fort is 40% of the fort, and its contents. With Xanthar, Alliance, and the Burrows, the monthly income is 5000. 40% of 5000 GP is 2000 GP to the Sentinels. Per Sentinel, that is currently 400 GP/month as a base business.

    From that money, the Sentinels each need to pay at least one skilled hireling each to work the Fort. That is a monthly cost of 2 gp/day or 60/gp month. These hirelings are trusted merchants that look out for your best interests and collect your portion of the coin that the fort collects. You can name your hireling and give relevant background information on him/her.

    The fort itself is essentially a 15K Fort as described in the DMG. Given the shoddy construction of it though, it’s only half “built” at best. Given that you burnt a tower and razed one of the buildings to the ground, I’m going to put the base value at 6500 GP.

    It will be vulnerable to attack and not much to look at when you take it over. It was built by orcs and bugbears using the brute force of ogres. Finishing the outpost/fort is essential to its safety and your business.

    The monthly business roll will be replaced by a roll to determine if any positive or negative things have influenced the base income each month.

    Each owner/character rolls 1d100 at the end of each month. Here are the results and what they mean:
    0-10 critical fail. Your business makes no income this month. You still pay your hireling though. Chance for something bad on the DM’s table of bad things.
    11-25 Your business makes half of the base income this month.
    26-50 Your business makes 25% less than the base income this month.
    51-75 Your business makes 25% more than the base income this month.
    76-90 Your business makes 50% more than the base income for the month.
    91-100 Your business makes double the base income this month. Your hireling is fully paid for. Chance for something good on the DM’s table of good things.


    Having your hireling work all week adds 5 points per week worked to the roll. He will return to Xanthar one week/month to deposit money and relax. So in a month, a hireling can give you a maximum of +15 to your roll.

    Until the fort is completed (another 8500 coin invested in it), you roll with a -10. This reflects inadequate wall protection and people being uneasy about spending coin at the fort. The Miser will match your gold invested in the fort at 1.5 GP coin for him for every GP that you spend. So, you need to spend 3400 GP to get the Fort fully built and remove the -10 modifier.
    Last edited by zebsen; 08-10-2019 at 05:12 PM.

  7. #27

    Default House rules and general things

    Lucky feat

    There will be several changes to this vs. RAW.

    After a long rest, you still get 3 luck dice: one can only be used for an attack roll (either yours or against you), one can only be used for an ability check, and one can only be used for a saving throw.

    For the ability check one, if the task is less than an hour long, it is an extra D20. If the task is between 1 hour and 1 day long, it changes to a d4 which adds to your ability check. If the task is longer than 1 day long, luck dice cannot be used.

    Lastly: disadvantage.

    I really hate the disadvantage and luck dice. I won’t be allowing the best of 3 dice options with lucky because it rewards exhaustion/disadvantage situations. Why not forgo sleep to try to persuade someone with the best of 3 dice?

    I am going with the following: when using any of your 3 luck dice at disadvantage, you must state that you are using luck dice before you roll disadvantage to cancel out disadvantage and just roll one dice. You have to state it before because otherwise you get to see both dice, which really isn’t what luck dice are meant to do.
    Last edited by zebsen; 08-05-2019 at 07:36 PM.

  8. #28



    For this feat, the -5 to hit and +10 to damage will be modified slightly. The first shot per round that you invoke that has this trade-off will have -5 to hit, +10 to damage. Additional uses of this ability in the same round will have the following changes:

    First invoke per player per round
    Attack # To hit To Damage
    First attack -5 +10
    Second attack -6 +8
    Third attack -7 +6
    Fourth attack -8 +4
    Last edited by zebsen; 09-09-2019 at 02:36 PM.

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