Ruleset

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rules

Asch's Houserules

These are the houserules I personally use in all my games. I find that they work well with the homebrew content in this wiki. As a DM, you don't have to use them. Feel free to pick and choose what to use for your game. Make sure to let your players know during session zero what homebrew or optional rules you will use.

Note that many of these rules empower player characters so if you plan on using them as a DM, adjust your encounters accordingly.

Character Creation

Ability Stats Generation

Players can generate ability stats through two different methods:

  • Randomized Ability Score. This is for players who would like to randomize their character's stats.
  • Heroic Array (17, 15, 13, 12, 10, 8). Arrange the score to any ability as you'd like!

Gold Roll

Regarding the gold rolling alternative for the starting equipment, some classes have an adjusted rate to make it comparable to the cost of their equipment.

Versatile Warlock

Warlock in Magisphere uses Intelligence as their primary class ability. However, you can switch it back to Charisma if it's more narratively fitting for your character.

Firearms

Firearms are readily available in the world of Magisphere. For simplicity's sake, if your character is proficient in crossbow, they will also be proficient in firearms.

Firearms have the same stats as hand crossbow (pistol), light crossbow (light rifle), and heavy crossbow (heavy rifle).

1+ Summoned Creatures

I personally don't like features or spells that allow them to have more than one summoned creatures; they really slow down the combat. If you would like to play a summoner that can conjure more than one creature, let's talk and figure out the fairest way to streamline it.

Weapon Weight

Small-sized character do not suffer penalty from wielding heavy weapons.

General

Ruling Conflict

If a situation arises where the DM is unclear on how a specific rule works, they should adjudicate it to the best of their ability and look it up after the session. If there is a disagreement over ruling, you can roll a dice and rule in favor of the winner and look up that rule after the session. Rule look-up should not happen during play.

Rule of Cool

The rule of cool allows for a really cool narrative-driven moment to happen that might not entirely comply with the rules. Reproducing these moments for mechanical benefits is not likely to yield the same effect.

Heroic Inspiration

Heroic Inspiration is used instead of regular inspiration as described in the PHB. Also players may hold up to 5 heroic inspirations under this optional rule.

Party Interaction

Party Interaction happens when there's a long downtime period and is meant to help characters learn more about their party members and bond with them.

I know a guy

In any situation (where it makes sense), a player character can declare "I know a guy/gal," and then quickly sketch that NPC and the characters' relationship. Fewer details are usually better to leave room for the DM and player to play.

Upon declaration, the NPC exists. Then, when the player characters try to interact with the NPC, the player who created that NPC must makes a Charisma roll to see how the NPC reacts. Depending upon the situation, the DM may decide advantage/disadvantage applies.

This rule is best utilized out-of-game to smooth out rough details.

Specialized Skills

In certain circumstances, DMs may disallow characters to perform a skill check for skills that their character is not proficient with based on whether or not it makes narrative sense. This rule aims to reduce non-specialists outdoing specialists due to lucky dice rolls.

For example, the barbarian with 8 intelligence without arcana proficiency cannot make an arcana check to determine the magical significance of the rare artifact. Narratively, it doesn't make sense.

Help Action

A character may only help another character with a skill check if they are proficient in that skill.

Skill Challenge

Skill Challenge happens when a complex situation arises that requires multiple, intricate steps to complete. The party needs to get X number of successes before they reach X number of failures (similar to death save checks). You can read the specific details here to learn through play.

Resurrection Changes

Resurrection makes deaths a more meaningful and impacting part of the game. In summary, resurrection now can only be performed on recently dead characters with an emotional bond to the living. Resurrection also starts a resurrection challenge that requires a group roll check. After a successful resurrection, the soul is scarred, making future resurrection attempts more difficult.

Combat

General Combat Rules

Loosely-tracked Ammunition

For the ease of play, characters are always assumed to have a decent stock of ammunition such as arrows, bolts, bullets, spears, shurikens, etc. on them and are assumed to resupply whenever they are in town. Characters are also assumed to spend a bit of time to recover ammunition after each battle. Through this rule, ammunition is not closely tracked. Instead, the DM may simply charge an upkeep fee per week similar to lifestyle cost.

Streamlined Spellcasting Materials

For the ease of play, the DM may simply charge gold cost on spellcast for material components of spells that has an associated gold cost. Rarer materials may still require players to find or purchase during play; this is intended by the designers to balance powerful spells such as hero's feast.

Minion & Super Minion

Minions are enemies that only take a single hit to kill regardless of damage dealt. Super minions require 2 hits to kill.

Custom Enemies

Giffyglyph's Monster Maker allows me to make custom enemies. Many of my enemies and monsters follow the criteria of that system. Below is a brief overview of this system:

  • Enemies come in 3 types: Minion, Elite, or Solo. Each one has their own stat scaling based on difficulty and action economy.
  • Enemies also come in 7 roles: Controller, Defender, Lurker, Scout, Sniper, Striker, or Supporter. Each has their own scaling, specialization, and special traits or abilities that differentiate them. The defender for example has strong defense and weak attacks, while the striker is the reverse. The sniper focuses on attacking at range, while the support stay in the back-line to assist front-liners.
  • Paragon Actions. Elite and Solo enemies can use paragon actions to move or perform an action at the end of any other creature's turn.
  • Overkill. Some Elite and Solo enemies may have an overkill attack where they will charge up a powerful attack over a turn and unleashes it. There will be ample telegraphing to help players avoid or prevent it.

Bloodied Condition

This is a gamified status that DM can call for when an enemy's HP is below 50%. Some enemies have special maneuvers or attacks that activate when they are in this state.

Variant Combat Actions

Potion Interaction

Drinking a potion yourself only takes a bonus action. Administering it to someone else takes a full action.

Retreat

When there's no way to win a battle, the party may agree to retreat. Doing so will turn the escape into a group roll where everyone must creatively describe how they use their saving throws to escape the enemy without triggering a grapple or attacks of opportunity as enemies are preventing the characters from escaping. The DC to pass is decided by the DM based on the circumstance. In rare circumstances, retreat may not be possible (the majority of players are incapacitated, captured, or completely surrounded).

Climbing a Larger Creature

Every round, you may roll Athletics or Acrobatics if you don't have a climb speed, and such movement is difficult terrain, and even just staying on requires a test if you're not somehow "latched on." Reaching certain points (e.g. eyes) might grant vulnerability or even automatically score a critical hit. Creatures may Shake off as a bonus action, requiring all climbers to repeat their test as a reaction.

Overrun

When a creature tries to move through a hostile creature's space, the mover can try to force its way through by overrunning the hostile creature. As an action or a bonus action, the mover makes a Strength (Athletics) check contested by the hostile creature's Strength (Athletics) check. The creature attempting the overrun has advantage on this check if it is larger than the hostile creature, or disadvantage if it is smaller. If the mover wins the contest, it can move through the hostile creature's space once this turn.

Shove Aside

A creature uses the special shove attack from the Player's Handbook to force a target to the side, rather than away. The attacker has disadvantage on its Strength (Athletics) check when it does so. If that check is successful, the attacker moves the target 5 feet to a different space within its reach.

Tumble

A creature can try to tumble through a hostile creature's space, ducking and weaving past the opponent. As an action or a bonus action, the tumbler makes a Dexterity (Acrobatics) check contested by the hostile creature's Dexterity (Acrobatics) check. If the tumbler wins the contest, it can move through the hostile creature's space once this turn.