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  1. - Top - End - #91
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    I'm not sure how leveling up only skills you've used in a specific session is better for online play than, say, getting skill points you can spent anywhere.
    I'm the GWG from Bay12 and a bunch of other places.

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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Every class has a Paladinesque Code of Conduct... Except Fighters and Rogues.

    Not only that was bad as expected, the game was also run by the 2nd worst GM I've ever had. At least the game only lasted 3 sessions.
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  3. - Top - End - #93
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatWyrmGold View Post
    I'm not sure how leveling up only skills you've used in a specific session is better for online play than, say, getting skill points you can spent anywhere.
    Quick to adjudicate at the end of the session, which allows me to take copies of sheets to stop players cheating between sessions. In person I prefer XP and for people to spend it at the beginning/end of a session, but I also used to collect all the sheets at the end of the session via group demand.

    You're assuming this is the kind of group where most people wouldn't spend twenty minute over where to put every skill point.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

  4. - Top - End - #94
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by Lemmy View Post
    Every class has a Paladinesque Code of Conduct... Except Fighters and Rogues.

    Not only that was bad as expected, the game was also run by the 2nd worst GM I've ever had. At least the game only lasted 3 sessions.
    Why fighters? Like, if we're going to start doling out codes to non-paladin classes, I'd pit the soldier-esque fighter nearer to the top than most. I mean, sorcerer got a code, but not fighter? That's just weird and inconsistent.
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  5. - Top - End - #95
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    You need to declare your will saves.

    For example, your barbarian will never notice they're attacking an illusion unless you say out loud (while the DM is listening to you) "I make a will save to disbelieve the illusion". And it has to make sense (to the DM) that your character would do this. Among all the other issues with this, it means you need to be aware both IC & OOC that you're dealing with an illusion to try and realize it's an illusion. And the characters who're least likely to make the save can have a success dismissed by the DM if he wants his clever trap to have a bigger effect space he realizes you could solve the problem he wanted his girlfriend to handle you don't metagame just the right amount.

    And, of course, save or lose spells are just "lose" if your character didn't make a successful spellcraft check.
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  6. - Top - End - #96
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celestia View Post
    Why fighters? Like, if we're going to start doling out codes to non-paladin classes, I'd pit the soldier-esque fighter nearer to the top than most. I mean, sorcerer got a code, but not fighter? That's just weird and inconsistent.
    Believe me... Fighters and Rogues were the lucky ones. Well... Except for the fact that they still had the class featurea of Fighters and Rogues, of course.
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  7. - Top - End - #97
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by Lemmy View Post
    Believe me... Fighters and Rogues were the lucky ones. Well... Except for the fact that they still had the class featurea of Fighters and Rogues, of course.
    Maybe that's it: your DM was attempting to balance the classes by making the worthwhile ones annoying to play.

    But then why give monk a code?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celestia View Post
    Maybe that's it: your DM was attempting to balance the classes by making the worthwhile ones annoying to play.

    But then why give monk a code?
    Have you seen how many abilities monks get? Totally overpowered.

    Having to ask the GM if our attacks had full effect. Because apparently when I use a crossbow I don't check to see if it hurt.
    Last edited by Anonymouswizard; 2018-10-04 at 02:48 AM.

  9. - Top - End - #99
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celestia View Post
    Maybe that's it: your DM was attempting to balance the classes by making the worthwhile ones annoying to play.

    But then why give monk a code?
    Oh no... Then at least he'd have had a valid reason (but a horrible solution). He had this idea that every single magical ability in his setting was literally the gods acting through the character. Therefore, every magical ability could be lost by displeasing a god. It was awful. We eventually got fed up with it when a Bard lost his spells and performances for refusing to play at a nobleman's dinner party (said nobleman was an annoying GMPC).

    In truth, what he wanted was to have a tool to keep the players "in line". He was possibly the most rail-roady GM I've ever seen. Downright ignoring or nullifying character abilities to fit his script... And of course, having deities directly interfere with the life of random level 3 adventurers... While simultaneously telling us that they are just random level 3 adventurers that are not chosen or special in any way, completely undeserving of special attention by the gods or nobles.

    Like I said... He was the 2nd worst GM my group ever had (we kicked him out shortly after his game ended, when he tried to unilaterally kick another player out).

    Kicking him out really was the best decision our group ever made.
    Last edited by Lemmy; 2018-10-04 at 07:15 AM.
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Honestly I've used 'all magic it's of the gods' before, although generally I either work out the code the god put on then with the player (so a bard might be unable to refuse to perform, or might instead be barred from taking money for their performance), or the bargain is explicitly 'power in this life for service in the next', which allows the character to do whatever they want because they'll be fighting the battles their patron really cares about after they die.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

  11. - Top - End - #101
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    WHELLL
    • "On time" xp bonus
    • Critical Fumble rules. Always stupid
    • Custom(or card) Critical Hit rules. See Crit Fumbles
    • Nat 1 is always a failure. On anything. Ever. Including skills. Got a nice tasty +19 to something where the max DC is 20? Too bad you wasted that extra point, since a 1 will still fail.
    • Nat 20 is always a success. Unless the DM decides he doesn't want you succeeding in a particular case.
    • New characters enter the game with starting wealth equal to the average of the other PC's(Add to that, complaining that the PC's were looting their dead allies in a game dry of loot)
    • Everyone gets Diehard as a bonus feat. Announced 4 sessions in. You selected it as a feat earlier? Oh well, sucks to be you, no replacement feats.
    • Changing the rules every session, whenever one player attempts to use the rule to their benefit in any way.


    I've probably used some bad rules myself but these come to mind immediately.

    As for the Nat 1/Nat 20 thing. I too like to reward good luck and laugh at bad luck, but the worst I go is that Nat 20 double's your mod and Nat 1 halves it.
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Reading some of these horror stories makes me wonder.

    Why do people stay with such horrible DMs after even one session? Are the crappy houserules and creepy behavior not visible at that point?

    I can understand staying with a game that's generally fun but has an annoying house rule (finding out that you were using variant encumbrance in 5e a month after you started playing was obnoxious), but ones where the DM is on a mad power trip or is creepy like a clown?
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixPhyre View Post
    Reading some of these horror stories makes me wonder.

    Why do people stay with such horrible DMs after even one session? Are the crappy houserules and creepy behavior not visible at that point?

    I can understand staying with a game that's generally fun but has an annoying house rule (finding out that you were using variant encumbrance in 5e a month after you started playing was obnoxious), but ones where the DM is on a mad power trip or is creepy like a clown?
    Lack of alternatives is the most common answer. If they're the only game in town and you can't or don't want to run it yourself, they are the only option. Far too many people ascribe to 'bad gaming is better than no gaming'.
    Quote Originally Posted by Red Fel, on quest rewards
    "Is a stack of ten pancakes too many pancakes to give to the party, even if most of them fell on the floor and one or two were stepped on? I wanted to give my party pancakes as a reward but I'm unsure if it's too much. The pancakes are also laced with blowfish poison so the party would have to get an antitoxin before they could eat the ones which weren't pulverized by shoes."

    I don't think anyone would want those pancakes even if you paid them to eat them.

  14. - Top - End - #104
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    Quote Originally Posted by The Glyphstone View Post
    Lack of alternatives is the most common answer. If they're the only game in town and you can't or don't want to run it yourself, they are the only option. Far too many people ascribe to 'bad gaming is better than no gaming'.
    Also the occasional case of trying to stay with a group long enough to convince them to play what you want to run (or to run at all).
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

  15. - Top - End - #105
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    Quote Originally Posted by Celestia View Post
    Why fighters? Like, if we're going to start doling out codes to non-paladin classes, I'd pit the soldier-esque fighter nearer to the top than most. I mean, sorcerer got a code, but not fighter? That's just weird and inconsistent.
    I'd probably put rogues before sorcerers, too. (Honor among thieves and all that.) When you get down to it, sorcerers are just guys who were born with arcane power.
    Bards would probably be somewhere in the middle; there's probably some kind of bardic etiquette, but since they don't congregate in guilds or colleges or whatever, it would have to be pretty informal.


    Quote Originally Posted by Lemmy View Post
    Oh no... Then at least he'd have had a valid reason (but a horrible solution). He had this idea that every single magical ability in his setting was literally the gods acting through the character. Therefore, every magical ability could be lost by displeasing a god.
    If designed properly, and run by a competent DM, that could be interesting. Of course, proper design would include things like "giving characters tools required to survive while they atone," which nobody ay WotC thought to give e.g. wizards. Also:
    In truth, what he wanted was to have a tool to keep the players "in line". He was possibly the most rail-roady GM I've ever seen.

    Quote Originally Posted by AtlasSniperman View Post
    "On time" xp bonus
    On one hand, I've played in games where one or more players were almost always late, and giving them a small incentive to arrive on time makes sense. On the other hand, the reason why the oft-late players were late frequently involved inconvenient work schedules.

    Nat 1 is always a failure. On anything. Ever. Including skills. Got a nice tasty +19 to something where the max DC is 20? Too bad you wasted that extra point, since a 1 will still fail.
    I like the idea that success is never guaranteed, that even the greatest masters can "roll a 1" and make a stupid mistake. What's good for the swordsman is good for the swordsmith, you know?

    New characters enter the game with starting wealth equal to the average of the other PC's(Add to that, complaining that the PC's were looting their dead allies in a game dry of loot)
    The first doesn't sound too bad. It puts the players on even footing, loot-wise. My group has used that for a while in a relatively loot-dry section of a published adventure path.
    The latter is kinda stupid. Looting your dead allies is a natural negative feedback mechanism; if you don't give the PCs enough loot for their level, they'll rapidly die off until the accumulated gear from dead party members compensates for the treasure deficit.

    Changing the rules every session, whenever one player attempts to use the rule to their benefit in any way.
    I feel your pain...but I already shared it halfway up the thread.


    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixPhyre View Post
    Reading some of these horror stories makes me wonder.

    Why do people stay with such horrible DMs after even one session? Are the crappy houserules and creepy behavior not visible at that point?
    In most cases, the "horror stories" accumulate over the months; they're not all obvious from the first session. In my case with the "it's the only game trail they could be following" DM I've mentioned a couple times, it took a couple of bad examples (including that one and a long argument over if the barbarian and wild-shaped druid could spend their turns to have the former mount the latterówith them giving multiple mechanical implementations and the DM being reluctant because he was afraid they'd keep abusing that apparently OP in the future) to convince me to leave; I stuck around until the next plot point wrapped up*, and then headed out.
    My friends are still in that campaign, because they want to fight the BBEG. (Not necessarily win, mind you.) They're currently in a series of side-quests, which the DM is justifying by saying they need to be higher level to fight the dragon (which is apparently CR 20-something) and tying up "plot threads" that were forgotten about since before any of the characters currently in play were created.
    Aside from the plot-wrappy-up stuff, there's the fact that the current DM used to(?) work at the comic/game shop we play at, and is still on good terms with them (to the point that when the DM showed up halfway through the scheduled 1.5-hour play session, one of the other employees was annoyed that the players were so hard on the DM...by not stopping the game they'd started in the meantime, and had offered to deal the DM into, which he refused. I mean, maybe the employee didn't realize the offer had been made, but still). Nobody wants to make a scene about it in the game shop, and the DM in that game is pretty much the only regular there who doesn't show up at the Sunday game the rest of us play, so we don't have another time to discuss things with him.
    Oh, and the players like the post-game going-out-to-dinner, too. I've said they don't have to play D&D first, but...
    ...So yeah, there's a lot of reasons that dropping the campaign isn't always as simple as it sounds.


    *Which involved the DM doing everything in his power to nerf the cheesy tactic known as "an ambush," up to and including an argument that we couldn't use hallucinatory terrain to hide holes dug in a natural environment, since they count as manufactured structures, even if they were dug by a summoned earth elemental or other natural creature. Which lead to the players pointing out that footprints should also count as manufactured structures, rendering the spell useless.
    ...This was followed by the DM arguing with a former soldier about if it was plausible to hide the holes through mundane means. The guy with experience won, thankfully.
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  16. - Top - End - #106
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    I honestly understand On Time XP bonus. We hd a player who, in the last two years, never showed up less than half an hour late. At that point, the pre-game chatter and catching up was definitely done and it was annoying. No reason for it either. He lived nearby and it was on the weekends.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eldan View Post
    I honestly understand On Time XP bonus. We hd a player who, in the last two years, never showed up less than half an hour late. At that point, the pre-game chatter and catching up was definitely done and it was annoying. No reason for it either. He lived nearby and it was on the weekends.
    I tend to prefer metacurrencies as a reward. Extra Fate Point for turning up early, extra Fate Point for chipping in for pizza, Fate Point for getting everybody back on track, Fate Point for letting something bad happen to make the story more interesting, Fate Point for buying the GM some ale...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

  18. - Top - End - #108
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    I tend to prefer metacurrencies as a reward. Extra Fate Point for turning up early, extra Fate Point for chipping in for pizza, Fate Point for getting everybody back on track, Fate Point for letting something bad happen to make the story more interesting, Fate Point for buying the GM some ale...
    Yeah. Perhaps, in 5th edition, give Inspiration for being early or whatnot? (For those who don't know, that lets you roll a single d20 with advantage, and then it's gone.)
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    Quote Originally Posted by JNAProductions View Post
    Yeah. Perhaps, in 5th edition, give Inspiration for being early or whatnot? (For those who don't know, that lets you roll a single d20 with advantage, and then it's gone.)
    For those who don't know advantage, it's a reroll to keep the higher of two d20s.

    Basically, Inspiration is a free d20 reroll that you have to spend BEFORE you roll the d20. So you go to do something important, and rather than to leave it to fate, you expend your Inspiration to roll 2d20 and keep the better one.
    Last edited by Man_Over_Game; 2018-10-05 at 01:31 PM.
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by Man_Over_Game View Post
    For those who don't know advantage, it's a reroll to keep the higher of two d20s.

    Basically, Inspiration is a free d20 reroll that you have to spend BEFORE you roll the d20. So you go to do something important, and rather than to leave it to fate, you expend your Inspiration to roll 2d20 and keep the better one.
    Or to negate disadvantage (which is the same thing in reverse-roll 2d20, take the lower one).

    Now, officially, there's a cap of one on inspiration, but I could see raising it.
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    I didn't see anyone create a thread to continue discussing XP, so I created this thread. My opinion of the discussion of XP in this thread is this: of course you should give individual XP. That way, if someone is getting less XP, you know that they are the one who is underperforming, and needs a Power-Up. Or, better yet, give group XP, but track individual contribution, and Power-Up those who underperform.

    Quote Originally Posted by GreatWyrmGold View Post
    That sure made an a out of u and me.
    (I never understood that saying; how does assuming make an a out of the guy who was assumed?)
    Well, that one's easy - the jerk who didn't provide sufficient information forced the other party to make assumptions. Kinda like jerks who wrote ambiguous RAW, and didn't clarify their intentions.

    Make sense now?

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    Quote Originally Posted by GreatWyrmGold View Post
    \
    Bards would probably be somewhere in the middle; there's probably some kind of bardic etiquette, but since they don't congregate in guilds or colleges or whatever, it would have to be pretty informal.
    Actually, bards have a long history of colleges, starting with their introduction and a whole hierarchy of colleges in AD&D (Not familiar with earlier), to the the fact that 5e bard subclasses are called colleges.
    This goes a lot deeper
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    Quote Originally Posted by JNAProductions View Post
    Yeah. Perhaps, in 5th edition, give Inspiration for being early or whatnot? (For those who don't know, that lets you roll a single d20 with advantage, and then it's gone.)
    Quote Originally Posted by JMS View Post
    Actually, bards have a long history of colleges, starting with their introduction and a whole hierarchy of colleges in AD&D (Not familiar with earlier), to the the fact that 5e bard subclasses are called colleges.
    This goes a lot deeper
    Hmmmm.... Wizards get Schools, Bards get Colleges.... I sure hope the Artificer subclasses are called Universities.....
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    Quote Originally Posted by Zelphas View Post
    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Played 3.5 with a group that swore AoO were provoked by moving into a threatened square instead of out of a threatened square. I milked the living **** out of that little rule.

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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by Anonymouswizard View Post
    Hmmmm.... Wizards get Schools, Bards get Colleges.... I sure hope the Artificer subclasses are called Universities.....
    Artificers get Vocational Programs.
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  26. - Top - End - #116
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by redwizard007 View Post
    Played 3.5 with a group that swore AoO were provoked by moving into a threatened square instead of out of a threatened square. I milked the living **** out of that little rule.
    Made that mistake originally, although when we played with it I also houseruled that charging allowed you to delay the AoO until after your attack without realising it (specifically because I thought 'I charge at you and get hit before I can strike' as stupid and couldn't possibly be the designers' intent).
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    So here I am, trapped in my laboratory, trying to create a Mechabeast that's powerful enough to take down the howling horde outside my door, but also won't join them once it realizes what I've done...twentieth time's the charm, right?
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    How about a Jovian Uplift stuck in a Case morph? it makes so little sense.

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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by Black Jester View Post
    Worst Rule I actually played with: All PCs gain the same amount of XP, no matter what they do in the game. Infuriatingly unfair, removes the most effective motivational tool a GM has and it is just plain lazy. I got better, though.
    If they go together through a challenge, isn't it normal they get the same amount ?
    Most of the time, this encourages cooperation.

    Now it can also encourage people to not make their characters take any risks, knowing that somebody else will do it eventually and they'll get their share of XP anyway.

    If this situation persists, it can lead to IC dispute, with the party simply asking the questions :
    "what do you contribute to this venture, already ?"
    "why should we share the wealth with you if you aren't pulling your weight ?"
    "why should we even keep you around when anybody else would be better ?"
    True, it can be good roleplaying if that's how the character is supposed to act... but then nothing force other characters to tolerate such individual.

    OOC, the situation might be more tricky but, most players being friends with each other, it shouldn't become a problem.
    If the player doesn't understand the problem or doesn't agree to adapt, one solution can be to act IC : the party refuse to split evenly the loot.
    Sure, the problematic character is getting his share of XP because that's something the GM hands out.
    But the loot ? If a character do not contribute, another character can act and steal stuff from #1.

  28. - Top - End - #118
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    Quote Originally Posted by PhoenixPhyre View Post
    Reading some of these horror stories makes me wonder.

    Why do people stay with such horrible DMs after even one session? Are the crappy houserules and creepy behavior not visible at that point?
    Other then no alternative game, the other big reason is the game is not a bad game. Quite often a game can be fun and exciting even with a 'bad' house rule.

    And, of course, a lot of players call ''any'' house rule ''bad''. And way to many only like positive house rules: if it is ''characters get bonus hp per level" the players love that house rule.

    Some I have seen:

    • Sneak attack(or any at will ability) is limited to once/turn.
    • Monks hurt themselves and take 1d6 damage while punching "hard" stuff.
    • You can Hide for hours without any opposed Spot check.
    • If two very attractive people come across one another, they must do opposed Charisma checks. The one who loses the check falls madly in love with the other.

  29. - Top - End - #119
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    In a game of AD&D 2e, one DM automatically gave each PC and NPC maximum die rolls for hit points. OK, that's completely balanced, since is just about doubles hit points for everybody. The only real effect is that it makes CON bonuses less important overall. [A fighter's CON bonus of +3 per die is a 30% increase (10 to 13) rather than a 55% increase (5.5 to 8.5).]

    To keep things fair, he also made magical attacks -- fireballs and the like -- deal out maximum hp damage. OK, again, that makes sense. Double the characters' hp, double the damage from attacks. No real change, right?

    But you still rolled for damage from weapons. This had the relative affect of reducing the damage from weapons, since the did the same damage to monsters with nearly doubled points.

    I don't think the players with the paladin, fighter, or ranger ever figured out that their swords had been effectively dulled. I did, but my wife was the wizard and I was the wizard/ thief, so I had no objections.

  30. - Top - End - #120
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    Default Re: Worst REAL house rules you've used

    well sneak attack is weakened but at least in 3rd edition most of a martial damage comes from modifiers not the die roll. I mean it is a slight nerf and all.
    Last edited by awa; 2018-10-07 at 12:56 PM.

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