Common 4E Houserules

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So, I'm finally getting back into a 4E campaign. I haven't had nearly as much XP with 4E as other editions, so consider me a noob. Are there any common houserules you folks use to make the game run a little more smoothly? Any suggestions will be appreciated.
Using the Dark Sun inherent bonus rules is very very popular, as is handing out free Expertise feats.
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A single minor action to draw and use potions and most other (minor action) consumables, and handwaving away a lot of the equipment juggling that would otherwise be required.  Drinking a potion is more fun for everyone when it doesn't require 1 whole turn's worth of actions, feat investment, and/or specialized magic items.

Allow the corner squares of a Large or larger creatures to count as a side for flanking, otherwise they are very sad and lonely locations.

Let both versions of Magic Missile exist.

Ignore the encumbrance limits for mounts as often as possible, unless the players are regularly trying to haul every last bit of dungeon furnishing back to town for sale.  The limits as is are too low for most races in heavy armor, and some of the bigger fellas (dragonborn, warforged, goliaths, minotaurs, et al) could move faster if they carried their horses instead of riding them.

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I'm fond of allowing action points to be used to re-roll Daily powers. 

Not permitting extended rests until after a certain number of encounters.

Doubling monster damage and increasing hit points.

Removing options that decrease the number you can crit on (so not critting on a 19 or 18).  

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So, I'm finally getting back into a 4E campaign. I haven't had nearly as much XP with 4E as other editions, so consider me a noob. Are there any common houserules you folks use to make the game run a little more smoothly? Any suggestions will be appreciated.

Nope, works fine as-is.

The addition of Essentials has made it a bit unwieldy, though, so I have seen a lot of DMs limit available content.  Not exactly the same as a house-rule, but pretty close.  Typically it's 'no Essentials' or 'Essentials only.'   You see "off-line character builder only" occassionally.

 

 

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Using the Dark Sun inherent bonus rules is very very popular, as is handing out free Expertise feats.


This, although on the flip side some of us just ban the expertise feats (or all static bonus feats) instead of giving them out for free.

I've also previously used a houserule (before monster damage values were fixed) where all characters and monsters applied their level bonuses to damage as well as attacks. Actually I may bring that one back for my current campaign, although it does favor classes that frequently make multiple attacks.

Extended rests only occur at the end of "chapter" or adventure (my campaign has different combat pacing so it's not unusual that the party may only have 1-2 combat encounters in a day, which would otherwise make dailies really strong encounter powers).

I handle encumbrance more on a common sense "how much are you carrying and how big is that stuff" manner.

That's all I can really think of right now. Not too much to fix with 4e.
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A nice thing that was added by my DM in a campaign was some kind of a group power.

He called it "Swift Recovery"
- useable in and out of combat
- Daily Power
- Minor Action (the whole group has to agree to use the power, usable in any PC's turn)
- restores every player to full HP and restores half of any PC's healing surges (if you have 10 surges per day you'll get 5 surges)
- Penalty: extended rest requires double of the normal time (12 hours instead of 6 hours or 8 hours instead of 4 hours for Eladrin, Drow and the like)
- does not restore any daily powers or action points

Whats it good for? Its an alternative to a situation I'm sure most of you are familiar with: Your group is somewhere in a hostile area, probably in a dungeon and runs out of healing surges... Oh lets just rest in this dark cavern, I'm sure no enemy will get around the next corner for the next six hours. So even after a hard fight the group still has the energy to look for a safe spot.

I know many of you will probably not agree with it and write a shitload of arguments why this should not be... but its a houserule so I dont care.
its not really a houserule but eliminating skill challenges from the game
Actually it doesnt, it should just show that a couple of people are calling on their last inner reserves to make it out of somewhere alive, we're not metagaming or something with it. Skill challenges do not suffer.
Actually it doesnt, it should just show that a couple of people are calling on their last inner reserves to make it out of somewhere alive, we're not metagaming or something with it. Skill challenges do not suffer.



i wasnt referring to your post, just to the op
Good suggestions so far. Let me clarify for future posts. My group is fairly small, doesn't get to play often(2x/month usually). When we do get to play, it is usually a 3-4 hour session every couple of weeks. That means I am looking to optimize for speed. We don't have long campaigns, just 1 or 2 episode mini adventures.
Having said that - any other advice or house rules?
That''s pretty often. I'd kill to play 'only' 2x a month.
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The main ones I would use if I ever DM:

Everyone gets melee training for free at first, weapon and implement expertise at 6, and improved defenses at 11.

Inherent Bonuses

No mechanial benefit of an extended rest until 2 milestones.

Con shamans and druids both get chain proficiency for free and swarm druid resistance works in chain.  All templar clerics get scale prof or heavy shield for free.  Warpriests able to switch out one encounter power for a different warpriest power for free.  All wardens can second wind as a minor action, dwarfs as a free action (not sure about that, but I would at least give it as a feat to encourage non-dwarf wardens).  I am willing to fix other classes that should have received errata if I think about them, but these are what come to the top of my head.
The main ones I would use if I ever DM:

Everyone gets melee training for free at first, weapon and implement expertise at 6, and improved defenses at 11.

Inherent Bonuses

No mechanial benefit of an extended rest until 2 milestones.

Con shamans and druids both get chain proficiency for free and swarm druid resistance works in chain.  All templar clerics get scale prof or heavy shield for free. 



Can I get plate  with the Armored Warlord feat that normally gives me scale? We could call it Knighted Lord instead ;p
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The Non-combatant Adventurer (aka Princess build Warlord or LazyLord)
Reality is unrealistic - and even monkeys protest unfairness
Reflavoring the Fighter : The Wizard : The Swordmage - Creative Character Collection: Bloodwright (Darksun Character) 

At full hit points and still wounded to incapacitation? you are playing 1e.
By virtue of being a player your characters are the protagonists in a heroic fantasy game even at level one
"Wizards and Warriors need abilities with explicit effects for opposite reasons. With the wizard its because you need to create artificial limits on them, they have no natural ones and for the Warrior you need to grant permission to do awesome."

 

We've only ever used 3.

1) Marks are removed after you fall unconcious.  (this has been offically added).

2) Zone damage is 1/turn.  (no sliding someone in an out of a stinking cloud).

3) Don't be a jerk.  (this covers the whole house and the yard, not just D&D).


Other then that, i've made several exceptions, or adjusted powers to fit certain character concepts..
you want to give allies +2 to defense instead +2 to hit?  sure.
You want to be a poision themed wizard, but don't have enough poision powers? take this and change fire to posion.

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my builds
F-111 Interdictor Long (200+ squares) distance ally teleporter. With some warlord stuff. Broken in a plot way, not a power way.

Thought Switch Higher level build that grants upto 14 attacks on turn 1. If your allies play along, it's broken.

Elven Critters Crit op with crit generation. 5 of these will end anything. Broken.

King Fisher Optimized net user.  Moderate.

Boominator Fun catch-22 booming blade build with either strong or completely broken damage depending on your reading.

Very Distracting Warlock Lot's of dazing and major penalties to hit. Overpowered.

Pocket Protector Pixie Stealth Knight. Maximizing the defender's aura by being in an ally's/enemy's square.

Yakuza NinjIntimiAdin: Perma-stealth Striker that offers a little protection for ally's, and can intimidate bloodied enemies. Very Strong.

Chargeburgler with cheese Ranged attacks at the end of a charge along with perma-stealth. Solid, could be overpowered if tweaked.

Void Defender Defends giving a penalty to hit anyone but him, then removing himself from play. Can get somewhat broken in epic.

Scry and Die Attacking from around corners, while staying hidden. Moderate to broken, depending on the situation.

Skimisher Fly in, attack, and fly away. Also prevents enemies from coming close. Moderate to Broken depending on the enemy, but shouldn't make the game un-fun, as the rest of your team is at risk, and you have enough weaknesses.

Indestructible Simply won't die, even if you sleep though combat.  One of THE most abusive character in 4e.

Sir Robin (Bravely Charge Away) He automatically slows and pushes an enemy (5 squares), while charging away. Hard to rate it's power level, since it's terrain dependent.

Death's Gatekeeper A fun twist on a healic, making your party "unkillable". Overpowered to Broken, but shouldn't actually make the game un-fun, just TPK proof.

Death's Gatekeeper mk2, (Stealth Edition) Make your party "unkillable", and you hidden, while doing solid damage. Stronger then the above, but also easier for a DM to shut down. Broken, until your DM get's enough of it.

Domination and Death Dominate everything then kill them quickly. Only works @ 30, but is broken multiple ways.

Battlemind Mc Prone-Daze Protecting your allies by keeping enemies away. Quite powerful.

The Retaliator Getting hit deals more damage to the enemy then you receive yourself, and you can take plenty of hits. Heavy item dependency, Broken.

Dead Kobold Transit Teleports 98 squares a turn, and can bring someone along for the ride. Not fully built, so i can't judge the power.

Psilent Guardian Protect your allies, while being invisible. Overpowered, possibly broken.

Rune of Vengance Do lot's of damage while boosting your teams. Strong to slightly overpowered.

Charedent BarrageA charging ardent. Fine in a normal team, overpowered if there are 2 together, and easily broken in teams of 5.

Super Knight A tough, sticky, high damage knight. Strong.

Super Duper Knight Basically the same as super knight with items, making it far more broken.

Mora, the unkillable avenger Solid damage, while being neigh indestuctable. Overpowered, but not broken.

Swordburst Maximus At-Will Close Burst 3 that slide and prones. Protects allies with off actions. Strong, possibly over powered with the right party.

I have a large number of house rules in my game.  Some of them include:

1.  Allowing Rituals to be cast during combat.   This requires the caster to spend an entire round or more casting the spell.   If he is hit during casting he must make  a skill check to avoid losing his spell.      

2.  Allowing Rituals to be reversed engineered from scrolls.  This requires a skill check (learn roll) and time.

3.  A critical hit system that is based on the 2e system.  It basically causes you to lose healing surges and does ongoing bleeding damage.   
 
4.  Charges for magical items - See Forthcore rules.  

5.  Inherent bonuses that stack with magical item bonuses.

6.  Using the madness rules from previous editions. 

7.  Repairing Damaged armor (Damage points) - this gives melee characters something to do in town while they wait for the ritual casters to learn new rituals. 

8.  Droping Skill Challenges in favour of improvised role playing with skill checks.  There is no need to have N success before X failures.  

Overall, provided it's not too much work, I'll make use of the source material from any edition of D&D.   If for example, I want the players to find a wand of wonder that works like it did in AD&D it will.    












works fine as-is.

Although modifying existing rules probably isn't needed, adopting some additional standards can help. Examples:
1) Rules discussions can be replaced with a quick die roll (low=bad for player, high=good for player) until it can be researched later.
2) Use easily read dice, and leave them on the table after rolling
3) For area attacks: roll a d20 next to each affected miniature.
4) Colored hair bands are placed on miniatures to represent conditions:
- YELLOW= SLOW or other hindered movement: immobilized, restrained, etc.
- BLUE=UNHAPPY: dazed, weakened, under a penalty, etc.
- PURPLE= VERY UNHAPPY: dominated, blinded, stunned, etc.
- ORANGE=FIRE or similar ongoing damage: radiant, psychic, untyped, etc.
- GREEN=POISON or similar ongoing damage: acid, necrotic, cold, etc.
- RED=BLOODIED of course
One mine is that if a creature has no land speed and has fly (hover), that creature is not influenced by gravity and cannot fall.

Think of a fish in water.  Can an unconscious fish fall?  Not easily.  In fact, most would actually float up to the water's surface.  It would also still be subject the the water's currents.

You have the free will to agree or disagree.
You have the ability to act freely on the above choice regardless of the consequences.

The most common ones I've heard of are:

The fixed enhancement bonus progression from DMG2/Dark Sun.
Some kind of change to action points.
Free XYZ expertise and/or ABC defense feat(s).
Some kind of change to milestones/resting.
No zone sliding abuse.
Sometimes splits between essentials/non-essentials stuff ("only essentials" or "no essentials" etc.)
Not using experience points (level when it seems right, usually every 2-4 sessions; generally people substitute some other reward system in XP's place that affects things like to-hit directly rather than levelling).  
Feat Taxes.  there are multiple valid approaches here (including "no house rules").  But you should understand the tradeoffs and pick one.


  1. Free Feat Taxes.  Give away the feats for free.  This prevents non-optimizers from falling into the huge traps, and moves the math fixes over to the PC side.  Optimizers will find things a bit easy.


  • Improved Defenses

  • Versatile Expertise

  • Melee Training for melee non-str classes


  • Free Feat Taxes: DM Side.  Adjust defenses and attacks of monsters down by 1/tier.  Ban the relevant feats.  You end up with the same feel as the Free Feat Taxes, but the players have to deal with less.  The DM will have to deal with a bit more during prep.

  • As-Is.  Optimizers know to take the tax feats, non-optimizers won't.  Optimizers will still find things a bit easy, non-optimizers can find themselves completely irrelevant.

  • Banned: Ban Expertise and Improved Defenses, and the Superior X class of feats.  With Teamwork, optimizers will still roll encounters easily.  Non-optimizers will die early and often.  Combat may get to be a little more varient than you'd like, and leaders that can't get out bonuses to hit will not exist.  (If a leader "+Hit" power fails to land, the party may be doomed and have to run away)


  • This is really only relevant in high paragon and Epic though.  Before then it's no quite as hugely important.

    "Nice assumptions. Completely wrong assumptions, but by jove if being incorrect stopped people from making idiotic statements, we wouldn't have modern internet subculture." Kerrus
    Practical gameplay runs by neither RAW or RAI, but rather "A Compromise Between The Gist Of The Rule As I Recall Getting The Impression Of It That One Time I Read It And What Jerry Says He Remembers, Whatever, We'll Look It Up Later If Any Of Us Still Give A Damn." Erachima

    My House Rules

    1. Free Feat Taxes.


      1. Versatile Expertise

      2. Improved Defenses

      3. If your class has 2+ melee weapon powers based off of a stat that is not strength, you get "Melee Training" as a bonus feat tied to the stat of the qualifying powers.

      4. Class Specific feat patches (Assassin move-shroud-on-death being the poster child.  Stradin Challenge patch might also apply.  Backstabber or Painful Oath do NOT apply: they're not patches, they are enhancements.)


    2. Nerfs.  Anything mentioned in the "Broken" page of the Handbook of Broken will be nerfed.  Some Bent things will be as well.

    3. Lunge: As a standard action, you may move 1 square and make a melee basic attack.

    4. No skill challenges as written.  As a rough framework, sure, but generally I just play some D&D.

    5. Page42-style stunts will typically be encounter-level power.

    6. Some classes get an additional Skill.  Fighters, specifically.

    7. Themes are allowed, but backgrounds are restricted to the generic backgrounds.

    8. If you want to play something that is known to not work (Binder, oAssassin, Hexblade, bad hybrid combo), let's talk.  I'll likely have some specific house rules in mind for your situation.

    "Nice assumptions. Completely wrong assumptions, but by jove if being incorrect stopped people from making idiotic statements, we wouldn't have modern internet subculture." Kerrus
    Practical gameplay runs by neither RAW or RAI, but rather "A Compromise Between The Gist Of The Rule As I Recall Getting The Impression Of It That One Time I Read It And What Jerry Says He Remembers, Whatever, We'll Look It Up Later If Any Of Us Still Give A Damn." Erachima

    Monster Vault only. The monsters are a lot more fun to fight.


    Uncommon rules:

    Maximize damage suffered when under bloodied condition. Things die faster (players included)
    This also makes people save up certain dailies/encounters
    Three generic background benefits or 1 from forgotten realms or scales of war (we tend to like scales of war)

    A few more involving flexible character creation. 
      Creative Character Build Collection and The Magic of King's and Heros  also Can Martial Characters Fly? 

    Improvisation in 4e: Fave 4E Improvisations - also Wrecans Guides to improvisation beyond page 42
    The Non-combatant Adventurer (aka Princess build Warlord or LazyLord)
    Reality is unrealistic - and even monkeys protest unfairness
    Reflavoring the Fighter : The Wizard : The Swordmage - Creative Character Collection: Bloodwright (Darksun Character) 

    At full hit points and still wounded to incapacitation? you are playing 1e.
    By virtue of being a player your characters are the protagonists in a heroic fantasy game even at level one
    "Wizards and Warriors need abilities with explicit effects for opposite reasons. With the wizard its because you need to create artificial limits on them, they have no natural ones and for the Warrior you need to grant permission to do awesome."

     

    One so common it's managed to go unmentioned:

    Don't bother counting mundane ammunition. Or food or water bottles. Except in long wilderness treks without opportunity to resupply by either shopping or hunting/crafting. 
    "The world does not work the way you have been taught it does. We are not real as such; we exist within The Story. Unfortunately for you, you have inherited a condition from your mother known as Primary Protagonist Syndrome, which means The Story is interested in you. It will find you, and if you are not ready for the narrative strands it will throw at you..." - from Footloose
    Here's one I use in my games.

    Big Hit: "Whenever deals damage to you equal to your bloodied value, you fall unconscious, save ends.

    1. As-Is.  Optimizers know to take the tax feats, non-optimizers won't.  Optimizers will still find things a bit easy, non-optimizers can find themselves completely irrelevant.




    Note that in heroic the 'feat taxes' amount to a +1 attack/defense on the side of optimizers, and often aren't even actually optimal as there are some more impactful feats out there on a case by case basis. (Hybrid Talent is often a bigger deal. Unarmored Agility is better than Improved Defenses for relevant characters. Superior Will is friggin awesome. Dwarven Weapon Training can be a huge swing. Etc, etc.) They definitely won't be the reason someone is made irrelevant.
    At epic the +3 swing is pretty massive though, and they are easily in the top tier of feats. (Paragon is somewhere in between.)

    A lot of games never get out of heroic though.

    Another aspect is that the value of those feats goes up the higher the relative level of the encounters you put in front of the PCs and especially the higher the level of the individual monsters relative to the party. That is if you frequently pit the PCs against monsters 4 levels up from them, in EL+3 or higher encounters, bonuses to hit and defenses will be incredibly valuable, possibly literraly necessary. If you use at-level monsters then the bonuses to hit will be unnecessary and may even become unimportant, though there's more risk of optimizers cakewalking, even in what are ultimately higher ELs fights. (In particular the PCs defenses can get to be practically unhittable if they optimize in that direction.)
    Good suggestions so far. Let me clarify for future posts. My group is fairly small, doesn't get to play often(2x/month usually). When we do get to play, it is usually a 3-4 hour session every couple of weeks. That means I am looking to optimize for speed. We don't have long campaigns, just 1 or 2 episode mini adventures. Having said that - any other advice or house rules?

    You probably have very short 'days' - that is, your party never goes 5 or 8 encounters without a long rest.   That makes conserving daily powers less important, so at least one daily (at low level) should see use in every encounter, which will shorten encounters.  At higher levels, every character could probably use a daily in every fight, which could shorten them by several rounds, possibly even to 2 or 3 rounds.

    You'd want to avoid classes and options that'd be traps in that play style, like daily-less classes (Essentials has a few), extra surges and item uses, items that only kick in after milestones, and so forth.  You probably don't have to ban them, they'll shake out one way or the other.

    Using MM3 and Monster Vault monsters also speeds things up, they have higher damage than MM1 & 2 monsters, and the elites & solos have slightly lower defenses (but often action preservation of one sort or another).  Such monsters hit harder out the gate and tend to convince players to cut loose on them, which, again, shortens the combat (in rounds).



     

     

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    We have the following ones off the top of my head:

    1. Rogues can use Thievery instead of Perception to search for traps (and only traps).
    2. Creatures take a -1 penalty to saving throws for every 1 extra square of forced movement over a precipice. For instance, if an enemy is right on the edge of a cliff and a wizard uses a push 3 power, the enemy would take a -2 penalty to the saving throw to fall prone in the square they occupy.

    AD&D is powergaming – powergaming for the DM. And back then, DM stood for "Dire Munchkin."

     

    I suppose people are entitled to their uninformed opinions; I just don’t see the point when that opinion won’t be respected. Proper research can be the difference in appearing a fool vs. a respectable dissident. 

     

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    We have the following ones off the top of my head:

    1. Rogues can use Thievery instead of Perception to search for traps (and only traps). 



    Ah that reminds me of one we have you may use any skill as a perception check in the appropriate arena. 
    In a city often you can use street-wise or in the wilds nature  or underground dungeoneering ... and so on. Arcana might be used when in the Astral Sea maybe.... or whatever. Be flexible not even sure Perception is that needed as a separate skill. 

     
      Creative Character Build Collection and The Magic of King's and Heros  also Can Martial Characters Fly? 

    Improvisation in 4e: Fave 4E Improvisations - also Wrecans Guides to improvisation beyond page 42
    The Non-combatant Adventurer (aka Princess build Warlord or LazyLord)
    Reality is unrealistic - and even monkeys protest unfairness
    Reflavoring the Fighter : The Wizard : The Swordmage - Creative Character Collection: Bloodwright (Darksun Character) 

    At full hit points and still wounded to incapacitation? you are playing 1e.
    By virtue of being a player your characters are the protagonists in a heroic fantasy game even at level one
    "Wizards and Warriors need abilities with explicit effects for opposite reasons. With the wizard its because you need to create artificial limits on them, they have no natural ones and for the Warrior you need to grant permission to do awesome."

     

    I tend to use Inherent Bonuses, and hand out two free feats to all 1st level characters: Improved Defenses, and an Expertise feat (including Master of Arms) of the player's choice.

    Furthermore, I have houserules that fix the Shade, O-Assassin, and Binder. 

    An example of Shade fixes is to make the racial power worth a minor action, but only 1/round.  Also, I've removed the -1 Healing surge, with an expense of -2 healing surge value, much like the Vryloka. 

    Finally, I've assigned flex-abilities for all races currently published that don't yet have flex abilities (most importantly, the Gnoll).

    Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

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    A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

    Character with the Ritual Caster feat can cast rituals as a standard action. They ritual must be the same level or lower than the character, and they must meet all of the other requirements; focus, class etc. They are also limited in that they can only cast a number ritual spell levels equal to their total level per day.

    Action points can be used as an Immediate Reaction / Interrupt on any other characters or NPC's turn.
    Just remembered a couple more...

    3. Psions can choose Wild Talent as a bonus feat instead of Ritual Caster.
    4. I give all the players a "DM Bonus Feat" instead of a free expertise feat. This feat is one that plays to their race and class choices to reinforce that character. For instance, a gnome wizard would get the gnome phantasmist feat, and human druid would get Human Nature Lore.

    AD&D is powergaming – powergaming for the DM. And back then, DM stood for "Dire Munchkin."

     

    I suppose people are entitled to their uninformed opinions; I just don’t see the point when that opinion won’t be respected. Proper research can be the difference in appearing a fool vs. a respectable dissident. 

     

    IMAGE(http://www.nodiatis.com/pub/3.jpg)

    Our group avoids the 4e skill challenge system as written.

    The 3-round Obsidian Skill Challenge system is much more straightforward and everyone gets to contribute to the success/failure of the event.

    1. As-Is.  Optimizers know to take the tax feats, non-optimizers won't.  Optimizers will still find things a bit easy, non-optimizers can find themselves completely irrelevant.


    [...]


    This is really only relevant in high paragon and Epic though.  Before then it's no quite as hugely important.



    Note that in heroic the 'feat taxes' amount to a +1 attack/defense on the side of optimizers, and often aren't even actually optimal as there are some more impactful feats out there on a case by case basis.[..]
    At epic the +3 swing is pretty massive though, and they are easily in the top tier of feats. (Paragon is somewhere in between.)

    Um, yeah?  I think I said that in the (highlighted) section of my post I added back after you trimmed it out.

    Also: I said optimizers, not "people who take the feats".  Not all optimizers will take those feats initially, as you pointed out.  (I think you're slightly undervaluing them, but not by much.  I find myself taking them around 8th usually, depending on details).  But by giving those boosts to the non-optimizers, you help them stay relevant despite themselves.

    I think you've not seen the caliber of non-optimizer I'm worried about here, to be honest.  Think "16-dex post racial elf Laser Cleric who spends the fight at range 20 making RBAs"  At least that PC is on the desired hit-curve now, even if they're still pretty darn useless.

    Edit: If this is coming off attackish, I appologize.  I'm really tired right now, and just confused trying to figure out what you're trying to say.

    "Nice assumptions. Completely wrong assumptions, but by jove if being incorrect stopped people from making idiotic statements, we wouldn't have modern internet subculture." Kerrus
    Practical gameplay runs by neither RAW or RAI, but rather "A Compromise Between The Gist Of The Rule As I Recall Getting The Impression Of It That One Time I Read It And What Jerry Says He Remembers, Whatever, We'll Look It Up Later If Any Of Us Still Give A Damn." Erachima

    I have houserules that fix the Shade, O-Assassin, and Binder. ).




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    While one report may say that FLGS report a greater amount of book sales, one cannot forget the fact that the 71000 DDI subscribers paying 6-10 dollars a month don't count as "Book Sales."
    "see sig" redirects here
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    General thoughts, feelings, and info on DDN!
    Stuff I Heard Mike Say (subject to change): Multiclassing will be different than in 3.5! That's important. There is no level cap; classes advance ala 3.5 epic levels after a set level. Mundane (AKA fighter and co) encounter and daily powers will probably not be in the PHB (for the lack of space), but nor will they be in some obscure book released halfway through the edition.
    You can't please everyone, but you can please me. I DO NOT WANT A FREAKING 4E REPEAT. I DO NOT WANT A MODULE THAT MIMICS MY FAVORITE EDITION. I WANT MODULES THAT MIMIC A PLAYSTYLE AND CAN BE INTERCHANGED TO COMPLETELY CHANGE THE FEEL, BUT NOT THE THEME, OF D&D. A perfect example would be an espionage module, or desert survival. A BAD EXAMPLE IS HEALING SURGES. WE HAVE 4E FOR THOSE! A good example is a way to combine a mundane and self healing module, a high-survival-rate module, and a separate pool of healing resource module.
    Three generic background benefits or 1 from forgotten realms or scales of war (we tend to like scales of war)

    A few more involving flexible character creation. 



    This reminds me, one house rule I always try to use is banning those "non-Con ability score used to determine starting hit points" backgrounds. Ridiculously out of line with the power of the other backgrounds and invalidates an already fairly meh ability score even further. I don't know how popular it is, though.
    Three generic background benefits or 1 from forgotten realms or scales of war (we tend to like scales of war)

    A few more involving flexible character creation. 



    This reminds me, one house rule I always try to use is banning those "non-Con ability score used to determine starting hit points" backgrounds. Ridiculously out of line with the power of the other backgrounds and invalidates an already fairly meh ability score even further. I don't know how popular it is, though.



    Given they have no impact on healing surges they amount to approximately 1 feat worth (ball park withou toughness) 3  general ones could be about +6 worth to several skills about like two skill focuses (but not so focused) or one trained in a new skill ie also about 1 feat worth. My house rule works out pretty well. 

    Its all still hit by the same issue all feats have, in combat and out of combat should be separated.
     
      Creative Character Build Collection and The Magic of King's and Heros  also Can Martial Characters Fly? 

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    Reflavoring the Fighter : The Wizard : The Swordmage - Creative Character Collection: Bloodwright (Darksun Character) 

    At full hit points and still wounded to incapacitation? you are playing 1e.
    By virtue of being a player your characters are the protagonists in a heroic fantasy game even at level one
    "Wizards and Warriors need abilities with explicit effects for opposite reasons. With the wizard its because you need to create artificial limits on them, they have no natural ones and for the Warrior you need to grant permission to do awesome."

     


    Given they have no impact on healing surges they amount to approximately 1 feat worth (ball park withou toughness) 3  general ones could be about +6 worth to several skills about like two skill focuses (but not so focused) or one trained in a new skill ie also about 1 feat worth. My house rule works out pretty well. 

    Its all still hit by the same issue all feats have, in combat and out of combat should be separated.
     



    Yeah, math-wise I do agree that your idea does seem to check out pretty handily, and I also agree that mixing out of combat bonuses with in-combat bonuses can be... extremely difficult to balance, especially because of the different ways they're going to be useful at different game tables. If half of your time is spent in fights and the other half engrossed in skill-based roleplaying then the combat stuff isn't such a big deal, but if you're like 75% combat and 25% joking around and scene transitions of course the combat stuff is going to be ridiculously good.
    Um, yeah?  I think I said that in the (highlighted) section of my post I added back after you trimmed it out.


    D'oh, missed that. But also I wasn't trying to argue with you but further continue the discussion, mostly to point things out to others on the forum/thread who don't have your level of understanding. I know you're on top of it, but the OP for example was asking things because he isn't on top of it (yet) and wants to know. So it's more of a "Yes, and also.."


    Also: I said optimizers, not "people who take the feats".  Not all optimizers will take those feats initially, as you pointed out.  (I think you're slightly undervaluing them, but not by much.  I find myself taking them around 8th usually, depending on details).  But by giving those boosts to the non-optimizers, you help them stay relevant despite themselves.


    I actually typically take them around 8th myself. But yeah, for people to remain relevant they basically need to know to always attack based on a 16 or higher attack stat that grows at every opportunity (except optionally skipping ED bonus at 21), keep their enhancement bonus gear growing, and ought to take a feat bonus to attacks by early paragon. Beyond that it helps to have a role in mind and generally build toward fulfilling it.
    If they want to be -good- there's a lot more to it, and any given advice in that regard has exceptions.. even what I said above. Shield Edge Block is a nice power in the hands of my 11 str Fighter|Battlemind hybrid, for example.. it just isn't accurate to think of it as an "attack power", from a tactical perspective. (It's more akin to the Shield utility power.) 
     

    I think you've not seen the caliber of non-optimizer I'm worried about here, to be honest.  Think "16-dex post racial elf Laser Cleric who spends the fight at range 20 making RBAs"  At least that PC is on the desired hit-curve now, even if they're still pretty darn useless.


    Oh man, I think I've played with him before.. whose character was that again? I'm sure I've had him at my table in LFR. 


    Edit: If this is coming off attackish, I appologize.  I'm really tired right now, and just confused trying to figure out what you're trying to say.


    No problem. I think you just confused assuming I was arguing against you when I was just trying to expand on what you said for other members of the conversation.
    A couple i use and LOVE.

    Common:
    Critical Failures and Critical Success:
    On an attack if a creature rolls a natural 1, the creatures turn immediately ends and grants CA until the begining of their next turn. AOEs can resolve their attacks. (This is the one found in the DMG)

    Also critical skills are worth 2 successes, dramatic failure is worth 2 failures in a skill challenge.

    Uncommon:

    Massive Damage threshold: A creature takes damage equal or greater than their bloodied value, make an endurance check (save +con mod is also viable) against a medium DC. If the creature fails this save it instantly falls to 0 hit points.

    Death Threshold Adjustment: If a creature takes falls below their negative surge value hit points, a creature dies.

    Coup de Grace: This is for assassination style kills, your assassins/executioners/rogues will LOVE you for it.

    If a creature is unaware of your presence and you are hidden from them they are considered helpless for your attack. You roll stealth and perception checks as normally indicated in the PHB however right before your attack, the creature makes a perception check as a free action. If this check fails, then it is helpless for your attack and open to your coup de grace. If the check succeeds it grants combat advantage and proceed with the suprise round as normal. A creature killed in this way cannot scream or call allies for help.

    I experimented with some, but only one stuck: letting ritual spellcasters choose extra free rituals as they go up in level. Getting most players to use rituals is like squeezing water from a rock.
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