The Nine and Six and One
1. We will be using tokens to represent action surges. You will receive some amount of tokens between 5 and 10 every time you level. You can use these tokens to add 1D6 to any attack, skill, or ability check. You choose to do this after you have rolled. You can spend more than one token to roll more D6s, and then take the best result from among them. When you level up again unused tokens are lost.
2. We will also be using “drama cards” that I found on the net that are much more interesting and powerful than wizard’s cards. They also have the benefit of being useful to every class and many of them have meta game benefits as well. They come in 4 rarities and I’ll have to think more on how to portion the cards out, but i think i’ll just use a mix of 8:4:2:1 in the deck I pass cards from. I’ll give you 2 or 3 cards to start the game with and you can earn another one with each milestone you reach.
3. I think I will be toying with the idea that you need longer than 8 hours to gain the benefit of an extended rest. I don’t want to have to build huge epic combats for every encounter for them to have meaning, nor do I want to have to slow down the plot by having many smaller encounters to provide a challenge that way. Something I’ll be trying out and fine tuning as we go along.
4. “Brawl” encounters. These are something that I read about as a way to stimulate fast, heroic type encounters without minis, mats, and initiative. They are effectively combats against only minions where players can use at wills only. The goal is to have an encounter type that can fit in well with failing skill challenges and random encounter type scenarios without disrupting the flow of the game overmuch. We’ll try these out and see if they’re any fun.
Example brawl encounter:
The party is attempting to track a villain back to his hideout in the city. They make a streetwise check to see if they can find anyone who can provide them with some information. They fail the check, and instead of being directed where they want to go, they are lured into an ambush by a gang of thieves.
From the rooftops above 4 thieves kick ropes over the edge to rappel down into an alley, where the party has suddenly found itself pincered between another 4 thieves. The 8 thieves rush into battle while the group struggles to ready their weapons. 3 of the thieves focus their attacks on the defender, 2 others on the main melee threat as the rest engage the party one on one. Everyone rolls at the same time, with burst and blast at wills being allowed to target 2 enemies. The enemies fall and the party takes hits until the thieves are wiped out or manage to beat a hasty retreat. The players can now get back to trying to find information about the villian’s lair and have gained a bit of exp and some spending money.
5. Home made items. I will be trying my hand at making some home-brew items that will be able to grow with your character. These are items that you might have to quest after to discover, or solve some sort of puzzle or trap. Because we will be using the inherent bonus system I won’t have to worry about giving out new weapons and armor every 4 levels to keep up with the bonuses. Instead you can have a weapon that starts out giving a passive bonus and through research and experimentation you could discover encounter and daily uses for it.
Example: Obsidian Death dealer
starting property: grants brutal 2 (re-roll damage dice that are 1s and 2s)
Gained encounter power: grants “Deathsrike” until the end of your next turn, minor action (damage dice that roll max damage can be rolled again and that extra damage added on)
Things like that. Your input on what can of items you would like to see turn up would of course be very useful.
6. I am thinking of going to an active defense system instead of having the monsters rolls for attack. You would roll a d20 + whatever defense is being targeted to beat the monster’s attack DC. I think this will help by having the players being responsible for whether they get hit or not. Also you will know the relative combat strengths of your opponents based on the DCs of their attacks and then can tactically choose which to engage, which to mark, and which to control.
Example: The goblins swings it’s axe at Rodan’s head. Roll AC DC 29. Rodan has an AC of 18, so he needs to toll at least an 11 to have the goblin miss him. (Math has been adjusted so that players win ties) If he rolls a 1, that is a critical hit for the goblin. He rolls a 13, and with his Ac of 18 he has 31. The goblin’s axe is deflected by his sturdy plate mail.
These house rules are subject to change during gameplay! Maybe they don’t work at all!