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PrGo
2012-08-27, 04:29 PM
Hey there!

My friend and I started working on a rule set for more realistic, low magic, D&D combat. Because we felt that after a certain point in the game, players simply become too powerful and can solve most problems with their brute force...
The point of this homebrew is to make the campaigns complicated with simple things even at higher levels, forcing players to use their imagination to solve problems instead of just slashing through everything.
So we are looking for help or just opinions for these rules, and feel free to test them out for yourselves :smallwink:

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Hit Points

Constitution mod + Base Hit die (of strongest class) + Fortitude + 1hp/level

IMPORTANT - your health points do not increase upon leveling up! Except from increased fortitude and 1 Hp per level! Its the base of these rules, making the game more dangerous, and pushing players to use skills rather than combat sometimes. Because a town guard will always be a threat to you... Everything else is gained as normal.

AC

Unearthed arcana, page 110
You can read it more about AC in this version on that page, but in short it goes like this:

Armor gives damage raduction, and lesser AC

Every class gets bonus to ac depending on the class chosen (we could use help about multiclassing on this one).
For example lvl 1 fighter gets +6 to AC, barbarian +4, bard +3, +2 are those that dont have armor proficency (this scales due to level)

Or simply what Yitzi linked:


So this (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/armorAsDamageReduction.htm) plus this (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/defenseBonus.htm).


DMG system

Every hit has chance to hit certain part of the body. After rolling for attack, if its succesful roll on the table below and according to it deal damage.

%
01-50 - Torso hit - normal damage

51-63 - Right arm - if minimum of 5 dmg has been dealt, arm cannot be used(drop anything in hand)/half damage

64-75 Left arm - if minimum of 5 dmg has been dealt, arm cannot be used(drop anything in hand)/half damage

76-83 Right leg - if minimum of 5 dmg has been dealt, movement is halved/half damage

84-90 left leg - if minimum of 5 dmg has been dealt, movement halved(both legs hit, must go prone)/half damage

91-100 Head - double damage


Damage conversion rule - You convert the amount of damage taken from a single hit to non-lethal equal to your armor value.
Example - if character is wearing breastplate (+3 to AC and DR 2/- with the UA rules used) and takes 10 damage, he would first subtract the DR that means he gets 8 damage, and converts 3 damage to non-lethal. Resulting in 3 non-lethal and 5 lethal damage.


CRITICAL HIT system

You score a critical hti following the normal rules for crits.
But, when a critical hit is confirmed you roll on this table (http://www.angelfire.com/dragon3/vinifera/critical_hit_table_2e.pdf) for additional effects.

SHIELD

When shot by normal sized missle attacks shields grant concealment in addition to armor bonus:

Buckler 10%
Light shield 20%
Medium shield 40 %
Tower shield 70% - too overpowered and unnecessary

PARRY
Insted of using attack of oppertunity in the round you can parry an incoming attack. Roll against opponents attack roll, if same or higher - attack is ignored. This rule does not apply for a natural 20. Rules or feats that grant you additional attacks of opportunity grant additional parry attemts.

Modifiers:

Attacked uses bigger weapon -4 to parry
Attacker uses two-handed weapon -4 to parry

(edit: we forgot to add this crucial part) In addition, each parry attempt after the first suffers a cumulative -4 to roll, until the beginning of your next turn.

Glimbur
2012-08-27, 05:32 PM
Have you looked at e6? It reduces the 'superhuman' part of D&D by cutting it out entirely. Levels (mostly) stop at level 6. After that you get feats every 5000 XP. Google knows a lot more about it.

A level 1 fighter has AC 18 at first level with breastplate, heavy shield, and +1 from dex. With your system, a level 1 fighter in the same gear has AC 22 and DR 2/- as well as a 40% chance to ignore ranged attacks. This is a significant boost in low level defense... for the fighter. A barbarian with the same gear has 20 AC, but rage and 2 more hp. I'm not willing to do the math to show if this is good or bad, but it does make class levels much more important, and might therefore make monsters less threatening. Monsters get a small change from Armor as DR, but a hill giant compared to a hill giant with a level of fighter is a significant difference.

In general, PCs get attacked more in a campaign than any individual monster. This makes debilitating crits worse for PCs than for monsters. Aiming for the arm seems like the pro move here, why is the location damaged random rather than a GURPS system? Well, because called shots in D&D cause other problems.

These changes make defensive fighting easier, but they also significantly reduce HP. I'm not sure whether that is more realistic or not, but I don't see how these changes make the game more fun. If they work for you, go for it.

PrGo
2012-08-27, 05:57 PM
Have you looked at e6? It reduces the 'superhuman' part of D&D by cutting it out entirely. Levels (mostly) stop at level 6. After that you get feats every 5000 XP. Google knows a lot more about it.

Yeah, we've seen it. That's an option, but that doesn't change the combat system very much, and we'd like to try a different one while still playing D&D, therefore this thread.


A level 1 fighter has AC 18 at first level with breastplate, heavy shield, and +1 from dex. With your system, a level 1 fighter in the same gear has AC 22 and DR 2/- as well as a 40% chance to ignore ranged attacks. This is a significant boost in low level defense... for the fighter. A barbarian with the same gear has 20 AC, but rage and 2 more hp. I'm not willing to do the math to show if this is good or bad, but it does make class levels much more important, and might therefore make monsters less threatening. Monsters get a small change from Armor as DR, but a hill giant compared to a hill giant with a level of fighter is a significant difference.

We'll have to edit the health and AC of monsters we fight one way or another, so that's not much of an issue. Though, you point out a good thing about concealment and shields, making them way more overpowered than we planned. I guess we can live without that concealment.


In general, PCs get attacked more in a campaign than any individual monster. This makes debilitating crits worse for PCs than for monsters. Aiming for the arm seems like the pro move here, why is the location damaged random rather than a GURPS system? Well, because called shots in D&D cause other problems.

Yeah, another good point. Though that wasn't much of an issue in our earlier games with that table, simply because we found it too fun. And the debilitating consequences make the characters more interesting, and give them additional individual tasks to find specific healers for that conditions.
While some people don't find that fun, we do.


These changes make defensive fighting easier, but they also significantly reduce HP. I'm not sure whether that is more realistic or not, but I don't see how these changes make the game more fun. If they work for you, go for it.

It makes it more realistic, since every hit taken is a serious thing, not a flesh wound like in normal D&D, forcing us to find innovative ways to fight and not just charge headlong into the fray like we usually do.

Yitzi
2012-08-27, 06:03 PM
Hit Points

Constitution mod + Base Hit die (of strongest class) + Fortitude + 1hp/level

IMPORTANT - your health points do not increase upon leveling up! Except from increased fortitude and 1 Hp per level! Its the base of these rules, making the game more dangerous, and pushing players to use skills rather than combat sometimes. Because a town guard will always be a threat to you... Everything else is gained as normal.

What does "fortitude" mean there? And be aware that monsters will need to be heavily reworked if you do this. So will character abilities, as otherwise you will end up with an extremely bad case of rocket tag.

ACArmor gives damage raduction, and lesser AC

Every class gets bonus to ac depending on the class chosen (we could use help about multiclassing on this one).
For example lvl 1 fighter gets +6 to AC, barbarian +4, bard +3, +2 are those that dont have armor proficency (this scales due to level)[/quote]

So this (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/armorAsDamageReduction.htm) plus this (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/defenseBonus.htm). Should work.


Every hit has chance to hit certain part of the body. After rolling for attack, if its succesful roll on the table below and according to it deal damage.

%
01-50 - Torso hit - normal damage

51-63 - Right arm - if minimum of 5 dmg has been dealt, arm cannot be used(drop anything in hand)/half damage

64-75 Left arm - if minimum of 5 dmg has been dealt, arm cannot be used(drop anything in hand)/half damage

76-83 Right leg - if minimum of 5 dmg has been dealt, movement is halved/half damage

84-90 left leg - if minimum of 5 dmg has been dealt, movement halved(both legs hit, must go prone)/half damage

91-100 Head - double damage

Could slow down and complicate the game significantly, be wary.


Damage conversion rule - You convert the amount of damage taken from a single hit to non-lethal equal to your armor value.
Example - if character is wearing breastplate (+3 to AC and DR 2/- with the UA rules used) and takes 10 damage, he would first subtract the DR that means he gets 8 damage, and converts 3 damage to non-lethal. Resulting in 3 non-lethal and 5 lethal damage.

Should work.


CRITICAL HIT system

I would say that if you use the body part bit, it should replace critical hits, as they're both essentially the same idea.

Your approach is going to make it way too complicated and slow.


When shot by normal sized missle attacks shields grant concealment in addition to armor bonus:

Buckler 10%
Light shield 20%
Medium shield 40 %
Tower shield 70%

They should not give concealment, as you're not actually hidden. Giving a miss chance against armor can work (although I'd advise more AC, as from cover, instead), but that's not concealment; e.g. it stacks with concealment.


Insted of using attack of oppertunity in the round you can parry an incoming attack. Roll against opponents attack roll, if same or higher - attack is ignored. This rule does not apply for a natural 20. Rules or feats that grant you additional attacks of opportunity grant additional parry attemts.

Should work nicely.

PrGo
2012-08-27, 06:07 PM
What does "fortitude" mean there? And be aware that monsters will need to be heavily reworked if you do this. So will character abilities, as otherwise you will end up with an extremely bad case of rocket tag.

Base fortitude save. I guess it makes multiclassing characters a little stronger, but that's why we're asking here, to find balance :smallbiggrin:

Grod_The_Giant
2012-08-27, 06:44 PM
If you're going to drop HP so much, magic becomes even more dominant. The health and armor differences are even less pronounced, as one good hit will kill either character, but now evocation spells become save-or-dies... or even save-and-still-dies. A level 10 fighter might have 32 health (5 con mod + 10 hd + 7 + 10), while a fireball from a level 10 wizard will do, on average, 35 damage.

PrGo
2012-08-27, 06:58 PM
If you're going to drop HP so much, magic becomes even more dominant. The health and armor differences are even less pronounced, as one good hit will kill either character, but now evocation spells become save-or-dies... or even save-and-still-dies. A level 10 fighter might have 32 health (5 con mod + 10 hd + 7 + 10), while a fireball from a level 10 wizard will do, on average, 35 damage.

This is meant for a low magic game. I'm sorry, I'll bold it in the first post :smalltongue:

Grod_The_Giant
2012-08-27, 07:27 PM
This is meant for a low magic game. I'm sorry, I'll bold it in the first post :smalltongue:

Whoops. My bad. Still, worth remembering when balancing monsters.

Thomar_of_Uointer
2012-08-27, 10:21 PM
I think that your ideas on hit points and bodily injury are better addressed by the Wound/Vitality Points variant from UA. It makes the distinction between bodily injury and simply getting tired in a fight, and it also forces anyone taking an injury to save against minor (but temporary) penalties, which is pretty close to what you'd see from injuries in a standard swashbuckling film. This variant also lets you leave DR and AC untouched. www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/vitalityAndWoundPoints.htm

Also, your ideas for low hit points don't carry well into high levels (even without magic warriors have huge flat bonuses to their attacks). It might work for E6. The parry variant is interesting at low levels, and works well with the low hit point pool, but I think it makes Dexterity an obscenely important attribute (thanks to Conbat Reflexes).

The random crits are fine, though I don't like them myself.

You say you want a low magic setup, and a lot of your complaints seem aimed at high-level play. Have you considered playing E6? http://www.enworld.org/forum/general-rpg-discussion/206323-e6-game-inside-d-d.html Sorry, I see this has already been suggested. I agree, you should try E6 and see if it does what you want. It's less drastic than what you're proposing.

PrGo
2012-08-28, 06:31 AM
I think that your ideas on hit points and bodily injury are better addressed by the Wound/Vitality Points variant from UA. It makes the distinction between bodily injury and simply getting tired in a fight, and it also forces anyone taking an injury to save against minor (but temporary) penalties, which is pretty close to what you'd see from injuries in a standard swashbuckling film. This variant also lets you leave DR and AC untouched. www.d20srd.org/srd/variant/adventuring/vitalityAndWoundPoints.htm

We didn't like that idea so we didn't read much about it, but seeing as some people suggest it, I'll read it, then update the post accordingly.


The parry variant is interesting at low levels, and works well with the low hit point pool, but I think it makes Dexterity an obscenely important attribute (thanks to Conbat Reflexes).

Yeah, I guess it really would work mostly with E6. Either that, or we'd have to find a way to re balance it in other ways.
Anyways, thanks for the insightful response.

Yitzi
2012-08-28, 09:46 AM
Base fortitude save.

In that case, it's probably better to just make it the total Fortitude bonus, and remove CON from being directly in the equation. (So you get base hit die plus Fort bonus plus character level; CON affects your Fort bonus and therefore your character level.)

As for the multiclassing issue, just say you can only get the +2 for a good save once. While you're at it, consider just using partial bonuses (1/2 for each level of a good-save class, 1/3 for each level of a poor-save class) and rounding down.