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    Default So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    So! You want to make a homebrew, eh?

    Perhaps you're just beginning, and want some advise on starting your homebrew. Well you've come to the right place! This thread is to give advice to those who have never made their own homebrew, or for those of us that might have homebrewed but are striving to become better at it. How will we be accomplishing this? Well, there's several ways.

    First, there will be a links to a ton of resources you can use to figure out the layout of your posts. They will help you match the format you'll find in the Rule Books for the various systems you might be 'brewing for, as well as things that you might overlook while making a creature, or focusing on a certain aspect of the game.

    Second, (this is where the experienced readers come in) I'd like for experienced homebrewers to write advice they might have in starting a homebrew. What to think about? What do many people get wrong? How to get past a basic idea? All of these things I feel would be great for people who are just getting started to read. The goal is to formulate a list on the 3rd post for readers to look at.

    Third, new or old alike, this thread is a place to ask questions. Say you're having trouble figuring out something. Need advice on a certain stat or class feature. Just can't plain remember what the ruling is on a certain thing and you don't want to start a whole thread to ask about it. This is your place! I won't keep a list of all the questions asked (unless it becomes frequent enough), but you can ask below and I or perhaps another homebrewer will be able to answer in for you.

    And once you feel you're experienced enough - Pay it forward! We've all been in your shoes! Pass on your knowledge to the masses!
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Helpful Resource Links


    Yes, there's a list of them in a sticky, but it bears repeating.


    Homebrew Theory: The Philosophy of Creation - A well written guide on things to consider when making your homebrew. A lot of text, but organized in a reader friendly way!

    Guide to Homebrew Layout - This breaks down the look and layout of Monsters, Classes, Prestige Classes, Spells and Feats formats.

    Table Tutorial - Confused about how to make tables in the forum? Here's everything you'll need and more!

    Abreviations Guide - Someone says PrC or XPH and you have no idea what they are saying? Here's insight on their "foriegn language".

    Explanation of the Tiering System - You'll often hear reference to how your homebrew 'tiers'. This tells you what each tier is so you'll know what to shoot for.

    Morph Bark's Homebrew Tier Compendium - A thread that examines Homebrewed Base Classes and Tiers them

    The Critique Thread - This thread is where you'll want to go to get you Homebrew PEACHed. What's PEACH you ask? Please Examine And Comment Honestly

    Homebrewer Community Chat Thread - You've finally mastered the art of Homebrewing or just want to talk to people about it in general? You've found the right place.

    Random Worldbuilding Questions - This thread is for questions you might have for some of your realistic Homebrew settings. If it is about mechanics for a system, there are different threads for that.

    If you have any additional links that might be good to add, post it below and I'll add it.
    Last edited by TheWombatOfDoom; 2013-04-09 at 10:14 AM.
    Scientific Name: Wombous apocolypticus | Diet: Apocolypse Pie | Cuddly: Yes

    World Building Project:
    Magic
    : The Stuff of Sentience | Fate: The Fabric of Physics | Luck: The Basis of Biology

    Order of the Stick Projects:
    Annotation of the Comic | Spell Compendium of the Comic | Transcription of the Comic
    Dad-a-chum? Dum-a-chum? Ded-a-chek? Did-a-chick?
    Extended Signature | My DeviantArt
    (you can't take the sky from me)

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Advice from the Veteran Homebrewers
    (or 'Brew Readers)

    0. Common Mistakes (and some that aren't)
    Quote Originally Posted by Debihuman View Post
    • Don't be embarrassed to post a homebrew. We all love homebrews (or we should if we are posting here). We'll give advice and throw out ideas and try to make it the best homebrew we can. And if you aren't doing that, why the heck are you reading this thread?
    • Let us know which system you are homebrewing for. Put the relevant information in your title. Don't make us guess what it is and what system it is for. 3.5 PrC is sufficient to indicate prestige class for 3.5 rules. If is Pathfinder say so (3.75 is sometimes a shorthand for Pathfinder but it can also mean a complete homebrew system so be clear).
    • Know the rules of creation. If you aren't sure, ASK. We're here to help too. 3.5 has a lot of modifiers that people forget to apply such as size bonus to attack
    • Let us know when you use house rules in your creation. It's hard to critique house rules and they can seem like errors. More importantly, don't expect us to figure out CR when you use non-standard rules. It's hard enough to figure out even using standard rules. A good rule of thumb is CR should be LESS than HD. If you have a high CR monster with low HD, you will probably have design problems.
    • If you want an over-the-top villain, please don't ask for it to have infinity stats or knowledge. That is poor (and lazy) design.
    • If you use something that isn't Core (outside the PH, DMG, and MM) CITE to the book so we can look it up. Nobody has all the rules memorized and it's frustrating to critique if we have to search on Google to figure out which book so we can look up what your feat does to see if had modifiers to apply somewhere.
    • Don't rename things that already have standard names. A spell-like ability doesn't need to be renamed if it exactly like the spell. Long names for Special Abilities are annoying as are goofy, made up names with apostrophes in them. It's not cool, it's annoying. Ditto for sticking two words together that should have a space between them. (Nobody listens to this, but I figured this was the place to say it.)
    • While most people post using American Standard English, not everyone does. Be kind to those who do not have skills or abilities that you take for granted. We have some posters with dyslexia and some who have English as a second language.
    • Break up your paragraphs with spaces between them to make it easier to read.
    • Put your over-sized picture in spoiler not your text unless you have a wall of text that needs it.
    1. Is It Orginal?
    Quote Originally Posted by Welknair View Post
    Has someone already made something that accomplishes your 1? Use the search function a bit, and don't replicate an idea unless you feel you can bring something new to the table.

    Try to avoid raging cliches. I can tell you right now those have likely been made already, and aren't terribly interesting. Your flavor/fluff should be just as interesting and original as your mechanics.
    2. Read Other Homebrews
    Quote Originally Posted by TheWombatOfDoom
    One of the best things to do when Homebrewing is to look at other people's 'Brews. It could give you ideas, or help you get a feel for what you like and don't like.
    Quote Originally Posted by Welknair View Post
    Read brew by other people. What are other people making? What are people saying about their work? If you have a question or a useful insight, post it!

    Homebrew is fundamentally a science of comparisons, determining whether something is too strong or too weak. If there's something similar out there already, read up on it for comparison.
    3. Know Why You're 'Brewing
    Quote Originally Posted by Morph Bark View Post
    WHY are you homebrewing? Is it just to make something, or to actually give your group, yourself, or other people something substantial? Do you want to offer the game something entirely new or show off your prowess with 'brewing? Once you know the WHY, you can work on the WHAT with much better aim.
    Quote Originally Posted by Welknair View Post
    Who do you think is going to use this piece of work? What do you think they'd want to see in it? (In general, we try to brew for everyone when we post online, not for just our groups)
    4. Know What You're 'Brewing
    Quote Originally Posted by TheWombatOfDoom
    Do your research. Make sure to consult the Core Rule Books to see what you want, and the links above to get your format. You can input the information you do know about your Homebrew into the format so you know how much you have and what you need to work on.
    Quote Originally Posted by God Imperror View Post
    Imho, before attempting homebrew it would be a good idea to have a good knack on the system, it is not that you need to know EVERYTHING but an 80-90% would be necessary before starting homebrewing. Otherwise you are probably going to forget how a rule interacts with another, or there might actually be there an official ruling on what you are trying to homebrew.
    Quote Originally Posted by Drynwyn View Post
    Generally, a good prestige class offers at least partial progression of a primary ability of one class or another, eldritdh blast, sneak attack, etc, while granting new abilities that work in synergy with those of a specific archetype. If it introduces entirely new things that don't fit well with existing archetypes, it should probably be a base class.
    Quote Originally Posted by Morph Bark View Post
    This is where the KISS principle applies: Keep It Simple, Stupid. There are people who often like to, or think they have to tackle huge projects, creating tons of new mechanics for a new magic system, a huge amount of feats, several new disciplines, and so forth. Try not to fall into this trap. Something you think should be huge or feels huge could actually be done much more effectively as something small, and something you think should be a base class might fit much better as a prestige class. Try not to reinvent the wheel. Try to invent new spokes; or if you feel ambitious with a stroke of genius, a new kind of wheel, like the guy who invented the wire-spoke tension wheel used in bicycles nowadays.
    5. Think About Balance
    Quote Originally Posted by Welknair View Post
    If you can't imagine a time when a player wouldn't want to use your option (Class, feat, PrC, etc.) then it's probably too strong. If you can't imagine a time that they would want to use it, it's likely too weak.

    Versatility is just as important as power, if not frequently moreso. Don't make one-trick ponies.
    Quote Originally Posted by Morph Bark View Post
    Also an important thing to keep in mind is the FLUFF-CRUNCH CONNECT. The connection between the fluff (basically everything not related to mechanics, which characters in-game could know) and the crunch (basically all the mechanics) is something many people lose track of sometimes. It is especially important when making classes or creatures, to make sure the two fit together. Otherwise you end up with NPCs saying Rogues can do something that they actually can't, or Fighters having an ability that is very far removed from their fluff (such as any sort of magic ability). It can be one of the harder parts to get right, but the first step is pretty easily taken, and some of the best works on GitP, Minmaxboards and other boards have a very solid fluff-crunch connect.

    6. Consider The Scale Of Your Project
    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Cookie View Post
    Start small. Don't try something big like a Base Class to start with. Try something smaller, like a race, a feat chain or a 3 level PrC. Once you have a handle on the small stuff, go bigger.
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord_Gareth View Post
    Something might theoretically sound attractive as a base class or a prestige class or what have you, but try to keep in mind the extent to which you can carry the concept. Do you have an idea to make a class of unarmed combatants? Then it's probably better as a PrC, since "I punch things," isn't really sustainable over 20 levels. Is your idea just one super-punch? Consider a feat instead of a PrC. That kind of thing.
    7. Welcome Critques
    Quote Originally Posted by TheWombatOfDoom
    Sometimes this is the hardest thing to do, but often it's very helpful to get another parties advice. They might see something you don't, and it gets you a feel for the kind of reception it might receive overall. Additionally, they might have tried something similar, and be able to impart what they learned on to you. However, don't be afraid to defend your idea either. Everyone has different tastes, and different ways of doing things. Not every idea is "better", even if it's a good one. That's why you need to know WHAT you're 'brewing so you don't stray from that original idea.
    Quote Originally Posted by Welknair View Post
    Don't be afraid of criticism. The people here are very cool, and for the most part are just trying to help you. Don't flee from their remarks, don't totally ignore, and don't blindly obey them. Knowing how to make use of criticism is just as important as knowing what a balanced feat looks like.
    Quote Originally Posted by Omnicrat View Post
    If you are asking for peach, when people explain how your idea is not good mechanically, already exists in a better form within the rules or in another homebrew, or provide fixes for broken aspects, do not summarily dismiss them with "They don't get it" or "That's not the point," even if you only do it in your head. Those can be true and they can be valid, but when you have made your goal clear (for example, improving natural healing with non-magical items) and everyone tells you your item is both overpriced and not effective at the goal you are trying to achieve, hear their comments and either decide your stated goal was not your actual goal then reassess to determine what your actual goal was, or accept that your idea which you loved and cherished and wanted to share with the world was not the best it could be and improve it through discussion with the people who posted in your thread.
    8. Keep At It!
    Quote Originally Posted by TheWombatOfDoom
    Don't give up if it all doesn't come at once. If you're having trouble getting all of a Homebrew, try brainstorming with someone.
    Quote Originally Posted by Welknair View Post
    Practice! It takes a while to get the hang of brewing, and most aren't born with an innate sense of balance. The more you brew, the better you'll be.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sgt. Cookie View Post
    Don't loose heart. Sure, you might have made a few pieces of homebrew and nobody as posted on them, but that doesn't mean you won't make something that people DO post on. Just keep trying, trying and try some more.
    Last edited by TheWombatOfDoom; 2013-04-10 at 07:01 AM.
    Scientific Name: Wombous apocolypticus | Diet: Apocolypse Pie | Cuddly: Yes

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    (and one in case we get long winded)


    Alright! So - if anyone has any advice for people just starting to homebrew, go ahead and post below! Even if it's just a one sentencer, every little bit helps. Pay it forward!
    Last edited by TheWombatOfDoom; 2012-09-21 at 08:54 AM.
    Scientific Name: Wombous apocolypticus | Diet: Apocolypse Pie | Cuddly: Yes

    World Building Project:
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    : The Stuff of Sentience | Fate: The Fabric of Physics | Luck: The Basis of Biology

    Order of the Stick Projects:
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Disclaimer: I spend most of my time on classes, feats and bloodlines, so my advice will be slanted towards those opposed to things like monsters.

    Welkvice:
    1. Have a clear vision in mind for what you're making. What do you hope to accomplish with this work?
    2. Homebrew is fundamentally a science of comparisons, determining whether something is too strong or too weak. If there's something similar out there already, read up on it for comparison.
    3. If you can't imagine a time when a player wouldn't want to use your option (Class, feat, PrC, etc.) then it's probably too strong. If you can't imagine a time that they would want to use it, it's likely too weak.
    4. Versatility is just as important as power, if not frequently moreso. Don't make one-trick ponies.
    5. Who do you think is going to use this piece of work? What do you think they'd want to see in it? (In general, we try to brew for everyone when we post online, not for just our groups)
    6. Has someone already made something that accomplishes your 1? Use the search function a bit, and don't replicate an idea unless you feel you can bring something new to the table.
    7. Don't be afraid of criticism. The people here are very cool, and for the most part are just trying to help you. Don't flee from their remarks, don't totally ignore, and don't blindly obey them. Knowing how to make use of criticism is just as important as knowing what a balanced feat looks like.
    8. Practice! It takes a while to get the hang of brewing, and most aren't born with an innate sense of balance. The more you brew, the better you'll be.
    9. Read brew by other people. What are other people making? What are people saying about their work? If you have a question or a useful insight, post it!
    10. Try to avoid raging cliches. I can tell you right now those have likely been made already, and aren't terribly interesting. Your flavor/fluff should be just as interesting and original as your mechanics.
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    There have also been times where I was jealous of your ingenuity and skills.

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Some lessons from Sgt. Cookie's Homebrew base camp:

    Don't loose heart. Sure, you might have made a few pieces of homebrew and nobody as posted on them, but that doesn't mean you won't make something that people DO post on. Just keep trying, trying and try some more.

    Start small. Don't try something big like a Base Class to start with. Try something smaller, like a race, a feat chain or a 3 level PrC. Once you have a handle on the small stuff, go bigger.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Keep Scale in Mind - Something might theoretically sound attractive as a base class or a prestige class or what have you, but try to keep in mind the extent to which you can carry the concept. Do you have an idea to make a class of unarmed combatants? Then it's probably better as a PrC, since "I punch things," isn't really sustainable over 20 levels. Is your idea just one super-punch? Consider a feat instead of a PrC. That kind of thing.


    Quote Originally Posted by Chilingsworth View Post
    Wow! Not only was that awesome, I think I actually kinda understand Archeron now. If all the "intermediate" outer planes got that kind of treatment, I doubt there would be anywhere near as many critics of their utility.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    [While I don't 'brew much on these boards, I do a fair bit for my group. That said:]
    Generally, a good prestige class offers at least partial progression of a primary ability of one class or another, eldritdh blast, sneak attack, etc, while granting new abilities that work in synergy with those of a specific archetype. If it introduces entirely new things that don't fit well with existing archetypes, it should probably be a base class.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    That's ok, I'm of similar experience. I have yet to officially post a homebrew on these forums myself
    Scientific Name: Wombous apocolypticus | Diet: Apocolypse Pie | Cuddly: Yes

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    One important thing I don't see up there yet:

    WHY are you homebrewing? Is it just to make something, or to actually give your group, yourself, or other people something substantial? Do you want to offer the game something entirely new or show off your prowess with 'brewing? Once you know the WHY, you can work on the WHAT with much better aim.

    The WHAT is what's important next. This is where the KISS principle applies: Keep It Simple, Stupid. There are people who often like to, or think they have to tackle huge projects, creating tons of new mechanics for a new magic system, a huge amount of feats, several new disciplines, and so forth. Try not to fall into this trap. Something you think should be huge or feels huge could actually be done much more effectively as something small, and something you think should be a base class might fit much better as a prestige class. Try not to reinvent the wheel. Try to invent new spokes; or if you feel ambitious with a stroke of genius, a new kind of wheel, like the guy who invented the wire-spoke tension wheel used in bicycles nowadays.

    Also an important thing to keep in mind is the FLUFF-CRUNCH CONNECT. The connection between the fluff (basically everything not related to mechanics, which characters in-game could know) and the crunch (basically all the mechanics) is something many people lose track of sometimes. It is especially important when making classes or creatures, to make sure the two fit together. Otherwise you end up with NPCs saying Rogues can do something that they actually can't, or Fighters having an ability that is very far removed from their fluff (such as any sort of magic ability). It can be one of the harder parts to get right, but the first step is pretty easily taken, and some of the best works on GitP, Minmaxboards and other boards have a very solid fluff-crunch connect.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Added - adjusted "know who you're brewing for" to "know why you're brewing". Added fluff/crunch to "balance". And What to "What".
    Scientific Name: Wombous apocolypticus | Diet: Apocolypse Pie | Cuddly: Yes

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Common Mistakes (and some that aren't).

    0. Don't be embarrassed to post a homebrew. We all love homebrews (or we should if we are posting here). We'll give advice and throw out ideas and try to make it the best homebrew we can. And if you aren't doing that, why the heck are you reading this thread?

    1. Let us know which system you are homebrewing for. Put the relevant information in your title. Don't make us guess what it is and what system it is for. 3.5 PrC is sufficient to indicate prestige class for 3.5 rules. If is Pathfinder say so (3.75 is sometimes a shorthand for Pathfinder but it can also mean a complete homebrew system so be clear).

    2. Know the rules of creation. If you aren't sure, ASK. We're here to help too. 3.5 has a lot of modifiers that people forget to apply such as size bonus to attack

    3. Let us know when you use house rules in your creation. It's hard to critique house rules and they can seem like errors. More importantly, don't expect us to figure out CR when you use non-standard rules. It's hard enough to figure out even using standard rules. A good rule of thumb is CR should be LESS than HD. If you have a high CR monster with low HD, you will probably have design problems.

    3A. If you want an over-the-top villain, please don't ask for it to have infinity stats or knowledge. That is poor (and lazy) design.

    4. If you use something that isn't Core (outside the PH, DMG, and MM) CITE to the book so we can look it up. Nobody has all the rules memorized and it's frustrating to critique if we have to search on Google to figure out which book so we can look up what your feat does to see if had modifiers to apply somewhere.

    5. Don't rename things that already have standard names. A spell-like ability doesn't need to be renamed if it exactly like the spell. Long names for Special Abilities are annoying as are goofy, made up names with apostrophes in them. It's not cool, it's annoying. Ditto for sticking two words together that should have a space between them. [Nobody listens to this, but I figured this was the place to say it.]

    6. While most people post using American Standard English, not everyone does. Be kind to those who do not have skills or abilities that you take for granted. We have some posters with dyslexia and some who have English as a second language.

    7. Break up your paragraphs with spaces between them to make it easier to read.

    8. Put your over-sized picture in spoiler not your text unless you have a wall of text that needs it. Speaking of that wall of text. Break up your paragraphs and use formatting (bolding, italics, etc.) .

    Debby
    Last edited by Debihuman; 2014-02-26 at 02:45 PM.
    P.E.A.C.H. Please Evaluate And Critique Honestly. Being nicer and kinder doesn't hurt either.

    Please, please, please when using non-core material, cite to the books. There are too many books to wade through to find the one with the feat, special ability or spell you use.

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    This doesn't have a place yet, but i'll ponder where to put it. I give a hearty 'here, here' to all of it. It's more of a format thing, so maybe I'll put it in the references section?

    Edit: figured it out. :)
    Last edited by TheWombatOfDoom; 2012-09-21 at 05:59 PM.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Insta-subbed.

    I just realized that I broke all sorts of rules... starting out homebrew waaaaay too big.

    Oh well.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    I think there should also be some sort of advisory for getting PEACHes. Recently two of my friends from my RL DnD group started getting active on this board and homebrewing themselves (RoyVG and WaylanderX), and their biggest problem so far isn't actually any of these things (at least, not primarily), it's getting PEACHes. This can be especially hard for someone not otherwise very active on these boards, or being popular or board-famous for something, as people might be more inclined to PEACH someone they know rather than otherwise.

    (At least, that's what I thought. For me it's kind of the opposite, sort of, hence why I never PEACHed them in their threads, also to just let them mostly go their own way with their 'brews, which have turned out pretty magnificently so far for the both of them.)

    One can PEACH other people's 'brews and ask them to PEACH in return, but there seems to be a bit of a stigma attached to this (also, people are lazy, at least in general regarding good PEACHes).
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Yah. I mean, my biggest homebrew is five or six posts long, and the accompanying thread is three pages, but I only got a handful of posts containing actual (but then very helpful) critique. It's often sad how some good hombrew utterly vanishes. Often, I see a lot of 'brew that has just post after post with a variant on "I like this" in it. That's nice, but rarely helpful. And I'm guilty of it as well.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Imho, before attempting homebrew it would be a good idea to have a good knack on the system, it is not that you need to know EVERYTHING but an 80-90% would be necessary before starting homebrewing. Otherwise you are probably going to forget how a rule interacts with another, or there might actually be there an official ruling on what you are trying to homebrew.

    Quote Originally Posted by Morph Bark View Post
    I think there should also be some sort of advisory for getting PEACHes. Recently two of my friends from my RL DnD group started getting active on this board and homebrewing themselves (RoyVG and WaylanderX), and their biggest problem so far isn't actually any of these things (at least, not primarily), it's getting PEACHes. This can be especially hard for someone not otherwise very active on these boards, or being popular or board-famous for something, as people might be more inclined to PEACH someone they know rather than otherwise.

    (At least, that's what I thought. For me it's kind of the opposite, sort of, hence why I never PEACHed them in their threads, also to just let them mostly go their own way with their 'brews, which have turned out pretty magnificently so far for the both of them.)

    One can PEACH other people's 'brews and ask them to PEACH in return, but there seems to be a bit of a stigma attached to this (also, people are lazy, at least in general regarding good PEACHes).
    This cannot be stressed enough

    I will personally will take any advice on promoting PEACHes that is given, while offering a couple of my own.

    Self peaching, you are probably not going to get all mistakes but try to build a character that does what your class does without it, and compare it level by level. Does your homebrew, offer some awesome option that is to awesome to pass? (That is probably too strong). Or does the other build make it better, if so your class needs a power up. Finally try to break it, search for over powered combinations, if you had to play that class in a munchkin's game how would you play it? Search for the overly strong (or weak) class features and adjust them till it feels balanced.

    Make it visible, you can link it on your signature, go to boards related to the game that you are homebrewing for and ask (politely) for them to break the class, some people have better rule mastery than others and might think of broken (or just plain wrong) combinations. Finally posting it in other boards, or giving it to your RL friends to peach, is probably a good idea.
    Working on: Anointed Heritor PEACHes are welcome.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    1.Power This is almost always the first mistake of homebrewing. When creating something it's so tempting to make it powerful and awesome, but nothing ruins homebrew faster. So stop and look at the power levels of everything else in your rule set. Note that for example, the lower level a spell is, the less damage it does. It's always best to go on the side of caution and go lower then higher in power. It's always good to try and think:would I want this used on my character? What would you think your reaction would be?

    But if you do want to drastically change the power level of the game, at least make it clear in your post.

    2.Changing the Rules. Be very careful about changing the game rules. Nothing can derail a homebrew faster then changing the rules. For example, making a bunch of fire attack spells for 3.5 D&D with no [Fire] descriptor and that 'are not fire, but burn exactly like fire, but are not fire' is just a bad idea. Again you should stick to the general rules of your system.

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    1. Don't break the rules if you don't have to. What constitutes "having" to varies, but there are reasons things are the way they are. Don't call a spell-like ability something other than an SLA unless there's a good reason to. Unorthodox Save/BAB/HD are also pretty questionable.

    2. Don't create feats/PrCs/etc to "fix" problems with DnD/whatever system. The prevalence of mage-killer classes and the like seems to stem from the fact that magic can theoretically get really out of control - but this isn't the realm of homebrew, IMO. This is the realm of houserules and good gamesmanship. Systemic problems are too ingrained to solve with a class or feats. Homebrew to create something you want to play.

    3. Have a level of balance in mind as you create your brew and make mention of this when you ask for PEACHes. If you're creating a class for, say, Thieves' World, you'll be working toward a much different realm of power than someone brewing for a Tippyverse game, and critique will have to adjust accordingly.

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    Yah. I mean, my biggest homebrew is five or six posts long, and the accompanying thread is three pages, but I only got a handful of posts containing actual (but then very helpful) critique. It's often sad how some good hombrew utterly vanishes. Often, I see a lot of 'brew that has just post after post with a variant on "I like this" in it. That's nice, but rarely helpful. And I'm guilty of it as well.
    Ayup. The best critique I've actually had was on my Com--... *ghk* COMMONER FLAW PRESTIGE CLASSES. Sorry. And even that mostly consisted of suggestions for new abilities, exclamations of love for it, and general silliness.

    Then again, secretly that was what I was going for anyway, so in that case it was just as planned.


    On more serious note though, yes, a good PEACH can be pretty rare. Which is why I found it awesome that in the most recent Base Class Challenge people got so very heated up and PEACHed each other like there was no tomorrow. Which is also one of the reasons behind my temporary leave of Tiering people's classes, as I generally can only do that after extensive review (which on many occassions was also followed by giving them a PEACH so they could correct certain things or so I could have some additional information regarding an ability).

    The Tiering will resume soon though. Very soon. So get into place and perhaps shoot some links into that thread for stuff you want to see Tiered.

    Also, I don't know how many people generally agree with my Tierings (from comments it seems like I'm nearly always either spot-on or only one Tier off in their opinion), but otherwise people who are new to 'brewing could use it as a resource for determining the balance of their class, by comparing it to other classes in their desired Tier.

    Quote Originally Posted by God Imperror View Post
    Make it visible, you can link it on your signature, go to boards related to the game that you are homebrewing for and ask (politely) for them to break the class, some people have better rule mastery than others and might think of broken (or just plain wrong) combinations. Finally posting it in other boards, or giving it to your RL friends to peach, is probably a good idea.
    This is why I told my friends that if they want their class' mechanics taken apart, they should post it on Minmaxboards.
    Last edited by Morph Bark; 2012-09-22 at 05:47 AM.
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  21. - Top - End - #21
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Oh, really! I'm looking forward to that.

    I found a lot of interesting new classes via your tiering.

    And you should do my wizard soon, it will only get longer if you wait more
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    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Quote Originally Posted by Morph Bark View Post
    I think there should also be some sort of advisory for getting PEACHes. Recently two of my friends from my RL DnD group started getting active on this board and homebrewing themselves (RoyVG and WaylanderX), and their biggest problem so far isn't actually any of these things (at least, not primarily), it's getting PEACHes. This can be especially hard for someone not otherwise very active on these boards, or being popular or board-famous for something, as people might be more inclined to PEACH someone they know rather than otherwise.

    (At least, that's what I thought. For me it's kind of the opposite, sort of, hence why I never PEACHed them in their threads, also to just let them mostly go their own way with their 'brews, which have turned out pretty magnificently so far for the both of them.)

    One can PEACH other people's 'brews and ask them to PEACH in return, but there seems to be a bit of a stigma attached to this (also, people are lazy, at least in general regarding good PEACHes).
    Yes, PEACHing is something we could likely offer here. What if we had a panel of people that might be willing to PEACH things linked to here? I'm not sure they'd always have the time (I know I don't) but it seems like a natural progression of this thread. Or, is there a PEACH request thread or PEACH related threads I could attach to the links section?

    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    Yah. I mean, my biggest homebrew is five or six posts long, and the accompanying thread is three pages, but I only got a handful of posts containing actual (but then very helpful) critique. It's often sad how some good hombrew utterly vanishes. Often, I see a lot of 'brew that has just post after post with a variant on "I like this" in it. That's nice, but rarely helpful. And I'm guilty of it as well.
    I often just subscribe to something I like but don't have much to say on the matter for that reason. If I really like it I'll PM them. I try and only critique when I comment, though in my earlier and newly registered life (which really wasn't that long ago) I was guilty of this too. Generally if it says PEACH, I try and limit my comments to PEACH, if not, I'll say it on there.

    Quote Originally Posted by God Imperror View Post
    Imho, before attempting homebrew it would be a good idea to have a good knack on the system, it is not that you need to know EVERYTHING but an 80-90% would be necessary before starting homebrewing. Otherwise you are probably going to forget how a rule interacts with another, or there might actually be there an official ruling on what you are trying to homebrew.

    I will personally will take any advice on promoting PEACHes that is given, while offering a couple of my own.

    Self peaching, you are probably not going to get all mistakes but try to build a character that does what your class does without it, and compare it level by level. Does your homebrew, offer some awesome option that is to awesome to pass? (That is probably too strong). Or does the other build make it better, if so your class needs a power up. Finally try to break it, search for over powered combinations, if you had to play that class in a munchkin's game how would you play it? Search for the overly strong (or weak) class features and adjust them till it feels balanced.

    Make it visible, you can link it on your signature, go to boards related to the game that you are homebrewing for and ask (politely) for them to break the class, some people have better rule mastery than others and might think of broken (or just plain wrong) combinations. Finally posting it in other boards, or giving it to your RL friends to peach, is probably a good idea.
    I think I'll be putting this in the critque section, and put in a /PEACH. I should also put an interpretation of what that actually is so people who don't know know.



    THANKS EVERYONE for being so awesome and contributing! I'm glad people are putting things in. Does the set up work alright? Should I put in spoilers?
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    I remember several peach threads, they all died pretty quickly. The last was the PEACH trading thread, where you put up a piece of homebrew, and if someone peached it, you would peach something they had. Didn't survive.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
    I want more mwa-ha-haaa and much less boo-hoo-hoo.

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Oh. So do people want to offer their services here, bearing in mind there will be a disclaimer saying posting your stuff on here does not guarantee PEACH? Maybe if we had enough dedicated people, we could have it?
    Scientific Name: Wombous apocolypticus | Diet: Apocolypse Pie | Cuddly: Yes

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Though I am not that busy in the homebrewing section (or anywhere else for that matter), I am always interested in helping people out. I can only speak from my own experiences, but I'll try to find some of the hurdles that stopped me from making, finishing or posting homebrew.

    1. Start out simple or small: Never start too ambitious, with a multitude of class features, choices, spells, abilities, etc., you only make it more difficult for yourself, and for others. Maybe start by mixing and matching other class features or change some of the numbers, and continue from there. Start with a race or some feats or a simple class. then slowly progress to more difficult stuff.

    2. Do something that you think is fun or interesting: Making something that is not interesting to make, is not fun. I'm a huge fan of videogames, and that is why most of my homebrew is videogame based, because i think that's fun. Make something that you think is fun, either to play, or to share, or just for the heck of it.

    3. If something is based on something, don't make it an exact copy, use your imagination: Making a class that goes from A to B without giving much options for variation, even with the inclusion of feats usually takes awy the fun of a class. put a little bit of variety in a class, but don't start making >100 different class features if you are not ready for it.

    4. Take your time: Large scale homebrew is generally not done in one day. Give it time. This also goes for making it post-ready. Giving people a large amount of text without a bit of formating is generally not interesting to read at all. Bold or underlined text or Both is one of the easiest ways to accomplish this.

    5. Dont be shy: This is my own personal problem. I'm always afraid for bad critique and this holds me back from posting anything. People are always willing to help, and don't be afraid if someone completely burns down your homebrew.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Quote Originally Posted by TheWombatOfDoom View Post
    Oh. So do people want to offer their services here, bearing in mind there will be a disclaimer saying posting your stuff on here does not guarantee PEACH? Maybe if we had enough dedicated people, we could have it?
    Well, I would. Problem is, I think I'm still not too good with the actual rules. I can compare stuff I see and look if the wording seems similar to other stuff I've seen, but I won't catch the details, which is probably what people are looking for. And if something is totally new and unfamiliar, I have no idea how to balance it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
    I want more mwa-ha-haaa and much less boo-hoo-hoo.

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Quote Originally Posted by TheWombatOfDoom View Post
    Oh. So do people want to offer their services here, bearing in mind there will be a disclaimer saying posting your stuff on here does not guarantee PEACH? Maybe if we had enough dedicated people, we could have it?
    You got it, chief.

    I'll throw my name in the hat. I'm not the best, but I'm weird enough to come at everything from a new angle. I can see points of low power and high power, since I do like breaking things.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    I'm willing to PEACH, though I'm slow about it.
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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    I guess we should go start a new thread for Peaching. I?ll get on it.

    There we go.

    You know what we also need? A general homebrewer chat thread. We are almost a sub-community on here, and I know that this is the board where I spend the most time.
    Last edited by Eldan; 2012-09-22 at 01:10 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Palanan View Post
    I want more mwa-ha-haaa and much less boo-hoo-hoo.

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    Default Re: So You Want to Make a Homebrew? (Advice from Vetran Homebrewers Welcome!)

    Same. Posted, btw.
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