House Rules

HOUSE RULES, v2.0 (2007)

RULES OF THE TABLE

1. All characters start with a 32-point standard buy before racial modifiers.

2. Should a character die or be replaced, the new PC starts at average party XP and a standardized GP for their level as detailed in AE and the 3.5 SRD. If they are replacing a character that left rather than died, they may use their previous XP total as part of the group average.

3. If a 1 is rolled on an HP roll, the player may roll again ONCE PER LEVEL.

4. All players should have their own copy of Arcana Evolved for game play. A copy of Arcana Unearthed and a copy of The Diamond Throne campaign setting are acceptable substitutes, but are less useful.

5. Players are strongly discouraged/barred from owning and/or reading through copies of Ruins of Intrigue, Legacy of the Dragons or any “official” AU/AE modules. While neither Mystic Secrets, Transcendence or Spell Treasury are “officially” part of the game, it’s highly likely that I’ll be integrating elements from them, and thus players are welcome to pick them up as they see fit.

6. Unless specifically noted, nothing from Mystic Secrets, Transcendence or Spell Treasury is allowed without permission. Exceptions will be made on a point-for-point basis, and will most likely be allowed within story/game constraints. Current examples include:
  • The Runic (Beast) Feat that Kaezhar uses.
  • Non-racial evolution – specifically used in NPCs, right now.

7. XP will be based on the standard CR system, but will be awarded for completion of “story events” rather than just killing stuff. While you might not get XP for killing a bunch of thugs in an alleyway right away, it will be added into the total you receive for saving the princess. The goal is to make the game a bit more episodic in feel, but if you don’t feel like you’re getting XP often enough (every 4 sessions, maybe?), bug me.

8. Players may gain bonus XP once per “story” by doing a little extra work out of game if they so choose. The awarded XP will be 5% of the total awarded to each player for that “story.” This extra work could include:
  • Typing up a summary of the session in character voice
  • Drawing out a scene from the session (or from the life of the PC) on unlined paper oronthePC
  • Donating something to game usage – minis, DM toys, whatever
  • Buying and painting a miniature that represents a character in game
  • Writing and performing a song/dance/whatever based on a previous adventure
  • Researching and suggesting some minor knowledge of the game world for gameuse – making Sibeccai sound Germanic, making a cultural insight on the Faen, creating a ritual or small observance of some tribe or city, etc.
  • Anything else that’s done for enjoyment that produces something that adds to the overall fun of the game without screwing the plot too much.

9. Additionally, players may nominated other players to receive more bonus XP for playing their characters exceptionally well during a given “story.” Up to 3 nominations can be made per player, and players may not nominate themselves. They may nominate one player multiple times, if they wish. The awarded XP will be 5% of the total awarded to each player, divided evenly amongst all nominations by that player.

10. All bonus XP (nominations or personal submissions) MUST be submitted to the DM via email by Midnight MST on the day before the next session. Nominations or submissions not submitted by the deadline will be applied to the next session. Exceptions will be made, obviously, for dances, items and whatnot.

RACES

GENERAL

1. All races have “Knowledge: RACE” as a class skill. This applies only to their race. Mojh, obviously, have both Human and Mojh, while Runechildren get only their base race.

2. Should your race grant you access to your respective race’s spell template, if you take the relevant feat you instead gain access to ALL spells of that descriptor. Thus, a Sibeccai 3/Mage Blade 2 with the feat Sibeccai Mage has access to True Strike.

3. Conversely, a Sibeccai, Litorian or Giant character that gains access to their race’s spell template via racial levels and doesn’t want it may instead swap it out for proficiency with that race’s racial weaponry. For Litorians, this is the Litorian Warclub and Bola. For Sibeccai, the Sibeccai Kopesh. For Giants, the Furnoch. As near as I can tell, the other “racial name” weapons are named for their size, not their history.

HUMAN

1. Levels in Evolved Human now grant two of the following benefits per level: A +1 inherent bonus to any ability score, a bonus feat (any non-Talent), or +1 effective level for spells/combat rites.

2. At 3rd Evolved Level, a Human may choose any skill which he has taken as a “class skill” for at least two of his three Evolved levels. That skill is now ALWAYS considered a class skill, regardless of what class he actually takes.

DRACHA

1. Armor for a Dracha costs 1.5x as much as listed in the book due to their wings. As such, the wings are considered to be armored.

2. A Dracha’s flight no longer improves at 3rd racial level. Instead, Dracha’s start with Flight (clumsy) at 2nd racial level, and gain Flight (poor) at 5th racial level. At 6th racial level, they gain Flight (average). This better reflects the progression of actual dragonflight, and serves in some small way to balance the Dracha slightly.

3. A Dracha gains an additional +1 effective level for spellcasting or combat rites at 3rd and 6th racial levels.

FAEN

LORESONG and QUICKLING No Change.

SPRYTE

1. Spryte Racial levels now grant 4+Int skills points per level. You shouldn’t get stupider when you get smaller.

2. One may become a Spryte by either “spending” a feat slot, or by taking the first racial level.

3. Despite what the book says, one may NOT become a Spryte if they have any Evolved racial levels in either Quickling or Loresong Faen.

4. Armor for a Spryte costs are explained on pg. 164 of AE. For any other “sized” equipment not listed in the book, assume the price is only 1⁄4 of book cost. Any equipment taken into the chrysalis with the Spryte resizes with them.

GIANT

1. A Giant gains an additional +1 effective level for spellcasting or combat rites at 2nd and 3rd racial levels.

2. Armor for Large Giants costs double, as explained on pg. 164 of AE. For any other “sized” equipment not listed in the book, assume the price is also doubled. Any equipment taken through Shu-Rin with the Giant resizes with them.

LITORIAN

1. Litorians now have a -2 penalty to Intelligence rather than Wisdom.

2. A Litorian gains an additional +1 effective level for spellcasting or combat rites at 2nd racial level.

MOJH

1. One may become a Mojh by either “spending” a feat slot, or by taking the first racial level.

2. One may NOT become a Mojh if they have any levels of Evolved Human.

RUNECHILD

1. For ease of use, assume that becoming a Runechild is exactly the same as gaining an ECL+1. Thus, a 9th level Runechild is considered to be 10th level for purposes of XP, The Sight, treasure, etc. Upon gaining 60500XP, they may take their next racial or class level.

2. The alternate Runechild types (Magic, Shadow, Vengeance and War) from Mystic Secrets, as well as the Runechild-only feats, are available pending on character type.

SIBECCAI

1. Sibeccai now have a -2 penalty to Wisdom rather than Intelligence.

2. A Sibeccai gains an additional +1 effective level for spellcasting or combat rites at 2nd racial level.

VERRIK

1. Verrik gain the Witchblood feat for free. They are inherently better Witches.

CLASSES

GENERAL

1. With any PRC or racial levels that grant “+1 existing spellcaster level,” it is also implied that the 1st level ability of each caster class increases as well as spellcasting. Thus, the Greenbond’s Infuse with Life ability, the Mage Blade’s Athame, the Runethane’s number of Runes in existence, the Magister’s access to Complex spells and the Witch’s 1st Witchery ability all increase as if they continued to level in their existing (base) class.

2. Any class that gets to choose a class ability at a certain level (Magister’s Aspect of Power, Witch’s Manifestation, Akashic Secrets, etc) can, through the use of a ceremony, switch one of their choices for another, provided the new choice was available to the character at the time the character originally made their choice (a Magister cannot choose to replace his Lesser Aspect of Power with a Greater Aspect of Power, for instance, nor could an Akashic drop his Lesser Learn Secret to obtain Greater Learn Secret). This ceremony is identical to the one that is used to switch feats out at 10th and 20th levels.

3. As stated on pg. 99 of AE, multiclass spellcasters may choose which of their relevant abilities is their casting ability. A Magister X that takes a level in Mage Blade may then choose either Charisma or Intelligence as their casting stat at the time of taking that first level. Once picked, THIS CANNOT BE CHANGED.

4. Any class or base racial level from AE is allowed without stipulation, though making a dynamic change like Magister to Warmain might require a bit of an explanation. Evolved levels or prestige classes from AE and/or another source (namely Transcendence) need to be approved by the DM well beforehand. This also goes for replacement levels, the Totem Speaker class, and/or templates – including Runechild. Evolution and Runechild are specifically DM reward ONLY.

AKASHIC

1. Delve into Collective Memory is a one-time thing per event. It specifically says that you cannot take 10 or take 20 on a Delve check, so like a Bardic Knowledge check or a Knowledge Skill check, you do not get to re-roll. You either know it, or you don’t.

CHAMPION

1. There is a MASSIVE erratum for this class that hasn’t been released yet. As most of it pertains to high-level abilities, we won’t worry about it yet – but be forewarned.

2. Champions that fail to support their cause cannot take further levels in Champion, though they may be able to convert entirely to a different devotion. As this is a rather meta decision/rule, the DM and the player have to work it out beforehand and the DM can’t just ban a player from being a Champion without prior warnings and whatnot. This ties directly into the next house rule.

3. Champions are HEAVILY encouraged to narrow their devotion a little when picking the class – rather than be a Champion of Life, for example, one could instead be a Champion of Curing the Plague. While similar to the devotion granted to all Champions at 10th level, this is more to focus the flavor of the class a little and grant a bit more hook to a rather bland initial class.

4. Anyone with the Deathless Crusader PRC may only take further levels in Deathless Crusader, Champion and their Race. No other class levels in ANY other class may be taken.

GREENBOND

No change.

MAGE BLADE

1. Mage Blades now have both Diplomacy and Gather Information as class skills.

2. The Athame may be ANY (non-double, non-ranged, non-weird) weapon, not just bladed weapons. Stuff like nets and saps qualify as “weird” weapons. Mageblade abilities can be renamed as needed for flavor – “Slice through Wardings,” for example.

MAGISTER

1. Magisters gain Sense Motive as a class skill. This replaces Innuendo.

OATHSWORN

1. Oathsworn now gain the feat Hands as Weapons as a bonus feat at 2nd level.

RITUAL WARRIOR

1. Exotic Combat Rites and Ritual Combat are added to the Ritual Warrior’s list of bonus feats.

RUNETHANE

1. Runethanes now have the class skills Decipher Script and Search instead of Spot.

2. The Invested Rune ability is received at 10th level instead of normal, and the Password rune ability is received at 5th level instead of normal.

TOTEM WARRIOR

No change.

UNFETTERED

No change.

WARMAIN

1. As a Warmain, one may apply the bonus 4th level feat of Weapon Specialization to ANY weapon they are proficient with, regardless of whether they have Weapon Focus already for that weapon. This likewise applies to the higher level derivative of said ability.

WITCH

1. A Witch can choose to double the casting time of her spell to remove either material components, or both somatic and verbal components. A Witch can of course choose to remove all components if she quadruples her casting time.

2. A Witch’s manifestation is a spell-like ability. This means they can be dispelled or disrupted like a spell can. A manifestation that does damage (including a witchblade) ignores damage reduction. Using a manifestation provokes an attack of opportunity.

3. A Witch’s “Sight” ability has been slightly altered to be more flavorful. Instead of getting a straight level/class answer to a failed save (which is pretty freakin’ meta), a Witch instead gets a view at the target’s aura. The aura varies in strength as dictated by the table below:

Creature’s CR / Aura Strength

1 or less Dim

2-4 Faint

5-8 Modest

9-12 Moderate

13-16 Strong

17-20 Intense

21+ Overwhelming

The aura will also show the Witch a rough approximation of what the target can do. A stealthy assassin’s aura might be a snake in the grass, or a dagger behind his back dripping venom. A warrior’s, on the other hand, might be victory on a field of battle or weapons clashing about him.

4. The Gust Witchery is improved when a Witch reaches 10th level: the ability is treated as a Heightened Gusting Wind spell.

5. The Water Sword Witchery has been changed—it can affect any metal object that is medium-sized or smaller. In addition, it is improved when a Witch reaches 10th level. Its rusting ability can now target magical items, though this ability can be used only once per day. Magical items receive a saving throw to resist the effect.

6. The Swirling Mist Witchery is improved when a Witch reaches 10th level: The cloud of Obscuring Mist is acid, and deals 1d6 points of acid damage once to every creature that is caught or that enters the mist. A creature that leaves and then re-enters the mist takes the damage again. The Witch is immune to this damage. There is no saving throw.

SKILLS

1. The skill Innuendo doesn’t exist. Its use will be replaced by Bluff and Sense Motive. (The only class that loses anything here is the Magister – sorry.)

2. Cross-class skill no longer cost double the skill points as class skills. While you may still only have ranks in any cross-class skill equal to half that of class skills (rounded down), you may now buy them at a 1:1 rate.

FEATS

1. If one has the “base version” of an improvable feat and gains the feat again via class levels or whatever, they may instead take the Improved Feat – provided they meet ALL prerequisites at the time of receiving the second feat. They gain no benefit if they do not meet the prerequisites at the time they gain the feat a second time.

2. The feat Hands as Weapons allows one to treat their entire body as a single weapon. Natural attacks gained via class or racial levels (such as Wolverine TW claws) do not benefit from this feat.

3. Natural attacks gained via class or racial levels (such as Wolverine TW claws) may be enchanted as if they were already MW-quality weapons.

4. The feat Weapon Finesse now applies to all Agile Weapons.

5. Any spell gained via the feat Exotic Spell is considered to ALWAYS be readied by the character, provided they can cast the spell.

6. Unique Spell is NOT a Talent. It is now a Ceremonial Feat.

7. There are four revised feats, as well as five new feats:

DEFENSIVE (revised) Prerequisite: Character level 1st only. Benefit: The character gains a +1 Dodge bonus to Armor Class. Special: A condition that makes the character lose her Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) also makes her lose Dodge bonuses. The character must be aware of the attack to gain this bonus. Also, Dodge bonuses stack with each other, unlike most other types of bonuses.

IRON FLESH (revised) Prerequisite: Hands as Weapons Benefit: Your body may now be magically enchanted as if it were Masterwork-quality armor. It, obviously, is considered to have no Dexterity Penalty and no maximum Armor Check. Magic so scribed may be removed via standard means (i.e. crafting), or by completely skinning the person so enchanted – otherwise, the magic returns with the skin it’s attached to. Your body now grants a +1 Armor bonus to AC.

QUICK DRAW (revised) Prerequisite: DEX. 13+ Benefit: User may now draw OR sheath up to their total Dexterity modifier in items per round. These items must be located conveniently and must follow logical rules – i.e., one cannot draw two potions and a two-handed sword at the same time. Standard: User may draw an item as part of a move action if they have at least a +1 BAB, or by using a move action.

TOUGH HIDE (revised) Benefit: The character’s hide toughens, increasing the bonus from natural armor to their AC by +1. This works even if they have no existing natural armor, and does not stack with magical items or spells. Improved: Characters of 18th level or higher can take this feat a second time and gain an additional +2 bonus to their natural armor that stacks with the previous +1 bonus granted from the feat.

NEW FEATS

IMPROVE RUNE CAPACITY (General) Prerequisite: Password class ability Benefit: The Runethane improves his total rune capacity by 3. Improved: At 15th level or later, the Runethane may take this feat a second time, increasing his total rune capacity by another 3.

MAGEBLOOD (Ceremonial) Prerequisite: Truename, character must have at least one level in Mage Blade Benefit: A character with this feat gains +3 Mage Blade levels for the purposes of determining his abilities with an Athame, but does not improve other Mage Blade abilities or allow the character to gain more Mage Blade abilities. The bonus levels cannot cause a Mage Blade’s effective level to exceed his character level; therefore a Mage Blade who has not multiclassed gains no benefit from this feat until he multiclasses later, and a Mage Blade 3/Unfettered 1 gains only a +1 bonus to his effective Mage Blade level. Special: This feat is on the Mage Blade bonus feat list.

RUNEBLOOD (Ceremonial) Prerequisite: Truename, character must have at least one level in Runethane Benefit: A character with this feat gains +3 Runethane levels for the purposes of determining the level of his runes, but does not improve other Runethane abilities or increase the number of runes available to him. The bonus levels cannot cause a Runethane’s effective level to exceed his character level; therefore a Runethane who has not multiclassed gains no benefit from this feat until he multiclasses later, and a Runethane 3/Unfettered 1 gains only a +1 bonus to his effective Runethane level.

SENSE THE SPEAKER (Ceremonial) Prerequisite: Truename Benefit: Anytime a character’s Truename is spoken, the character knows the name and race of the speaker, as well as a vague sense of the direction and distance the speaker is from the character (as long as they are on the same plane).

WITCHBLOOD (Ceremonial) Prerequisite: Truename, character must have at least one level in Witch Benefit: A character with this feat gains +3 Witch levels for the purposes of determining the strength of his Witcheries, but does not gain other Witch abilities nor allow new Witcheries to be gained. The bonus levels cannot cause a Witch’s effective level to exceed his character level; therefore a Witch who has not multiclassed gains no benefit from this feat until he multiclasses later, and a Witch 3/Unfettered 1 gains only a +1 bonus to his effective Witch level.

EQUIPMENT

1. The Sword-Axe weapon DOES NOT EXIST. EVER.

2. Padded Armor now has no chance of Spell Failure. Understandably, its most common form is now that of “Casters Robes”.

3. Dire Weapons cannot do Subdual damage.

4. Potion Belts/Bandoliers exist. They weigh 2 pounds, cost 20 GP and can carry up to 6 potions or other similar small items. A Masterwork version exists for 100 GP, and can carry 10 potions. Drawing a potion from a MW Belt is considered a Free Action.

5. When selling stuff, expect to get the standard 50% of book value unless special circumstances apply (slow market, glutted market, etc.). If you wish to barter for a better price (via Diplomacy or Intimidate), one must actually Role-play this out. Spells, connections and whatnot will definitely affect the overall result, but I’m going to be a jerk and make you work at least a little. Prices can typically be affected as such +/- 10%.

6. Rather than the typical magic item slots used in 3.0 D&D, a character is allowed to have 10 permanent magical items worn on their person at a time. While one still cannot wear 2 sets of armor or boots, they can now freely wear 4 rings if they so choose, provided they have only 6 other permanent, wearable items. This, I feel, is more inline with the overall streamlining of magic item usage and pricing found in AE, and has the added benefit of not penalizing a character who is somehow maimed. Or, say, has a ring fetish.

7. If one somehow is gaining two Armor bonuses to AC, only the highest one functions. None of the abilities from the second source work, period.

8. Any character may contribute effort to assist in Crafting an item. Up to two additional characters may donate up to 50% of the total XP (divided evenly between them) to complete any item being crafted, but the base crafter must contribute at least 50% of the total XP and time involved. The exception to this rule is if the item being improved is bonded in some way to another character – an Athame, the body of an Oathsworn, something effected by the feat Bonded Item, etc. In this instance, the character bonded with the item can contribute 100% of the XP towards its improvement.

PLAYING THE GAME

1. Initiative ties resolve as such – Highest Dex > Highest Reflex Save > Highest BAB > Closest to the DM clockwise. Zombies go last, period.

2. Every player has up to his PC’s INT modifier in “Takebacks” per session, minimum 1. A Takeback can be used to do something one forgot, like pick up the sword they dropped, put the potion away, or tie up the survivors.

3. As Hero’s have Hero Points, Villains likewise have Villain points. One cannot have both at the same time, and one may not have more Points than HD at any time. One gains Hero Points when one levels as per DM discretion, but it’s typically 1/level unless you’re a complete jerk.

4. In addition to the uses listed in the book (pg. 199, AE), players may spend a Hero Point to convert all ability drain from a particular encounter to ability damage immediately upon the encounter’s resolution.

5. Should a character gain negative levels, they may make a save to remove them (one save/level gained) once per day up to a number of days equal to their CON modifier. The save DC increases by 1 for each previous failed save. Players may make the save at a time of their choosing, and must spend several minutes concentrating to make the attempt.

6. Should one have taken both Lethal and Subdual damage, they heal 1 point of Subdual for every point of Lethal damage they are healed. If they have no Lethal damage and only Subdual, one point of healing from any new source (that is, one cannot use any “overflow” healing) removes all remaining Subdual damage.

COMBAT

1. Once you are flanked by two enemies, you are considered flanked to everyone else in combat.

2. In combat, a roll of a “20” is an automatic hit, while the roll of a “1” is an automatic failure. Upon rolling either, the d20 is then rerolled. If the second roll would have been a hit, the roller of a 20 gets a critical confirmation and the roller of the 1 just misses. If the second roll is a miss, the roller of the 20 just gets a hit while the roller of the 1 has a critical failure. The nature of this failure is up to the DM, but generally is a free AoO on the roller. It may also include hitting another party member, dropping the weapon, or falling over.

3. 2 20’s in a roll means double critical (standard d20 multiplication), and 3 means the target is reduced IMMEDIATELY to unconsciousness and is bleeding to death.

4. 2 1’s in a roll is really bad, while 3 is catastrophic.

5. “The Bird” is Universal.

6. For low-level, mostly nameless Mooks, assume that they are using “the Henchmen template”. Unless specifically targets to leave for questioning later, Henchmen instantly die at 0 hp (much like undead).

7. The first HD any creature receives is maxed out, be it from levels, racial levels or just standard monstrous HD. Thus, most creatures will have slightly more HP than you’d expect.

8. Enemy Full-Casters will most likely count as CR+1 for XP purposes.

9. Average Intelligence is AVERAGE Intelligence. Don’t expect dumb NPCs.

SPELLS AND MAGIC

1. The Programmed Spell Template allows you to cast a spell on an item or person that will go off when certain criteria are met. The spell is cast 3 levels higher than its original level and cannot be heightened or affected by ANY other template when it is Programmed. A caster may have X spells Programmed at any given time, where X is their relevant casting ability modifier.

2. A Fire-based, flaming creature can be used as the base for a Fireburst spell. If the creature was summoned by the Fireburst’s caster, the creature is destroyed and gets no save. Otherwise, the creature gets a Will save to take equal damage to the Fireburst. A successful save negates the Fireburst completely, and the creature takes no damage.

3. The Acid Spell-template now includes a Fortitude save negates the stun effect.

4. One may not use Canny Effort for any type of skill-check that requires any sort of reasonable time limit. Thus, Craft, Knowledge and Gather Info. checks are off limits, and others might be in certain situations.

5. The beneficial effects of Heightening Invisibility do not begin until the invisible subject begins attacking. At such point, the “timer” begins on the special heightened effects.

6. If one is attacked while under the effects of Distraction, the spell is broken.

7. Treat attacks made while under the effects of Ghost Weapon as Incorporeal Touch Attacks.

8. Protection against Elements/Energy – These spells now protect against ALL applicable energy or elemental damage types simultaneously.

9. Psychic Blast now allows a Will save for half damage.

10. Resilient Sphere (Greater) does not exist.

House Rules

Serathis: The Storm of Memory citronade