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    Default DnD 3.5 Skill Changes

    From my Tome of House Rules v1.5; Skill section.

    Feedback appreciated.

    Skills:

    Skill sets: Certain skills are combined together to form a ‘skill set’, these skill sets are levelled up (ranked up) as normal, and checks are made to them as normal. However, one generally only has specific bonuses to a particular skill in the set. For instance, in the Perception skill set, elves have +2 to Perception, but an eagle only has +8 to spot.

    You may not take Skill Focus in a skill set, only in a subskill of that set. You may however take a feat such as Acrobatic and have it grant you +2 to skills of a skill set. You must have all applicable class skills in the skill set in order to take a skill set as a class skill.

    Also, at the DM’s option, skills gained through a skill set do not count towards qualifying for things like feats or prestige classes.

    Scribing: Forgery and Decipher Script

    Perception: Spot, Listen, Smell

    Stealth: Hide, Move Silently, Sleight of Hand

    Tinkering: Disable Device, Open Lock

    Acrobatics: Tumble, Balance, Escape Artist

    Athleticism: Climb, Swim, Jump

    Survival: Survival, Use Rope

    Innuendo: Bluff, Seduction


    Concentration:

    -If you attempt to Cast Defensively and fail, you lose the spell, but still provoke.
    -Double the spell level (instead of merely the spell level) is added to any DCs that involve the spell level.
    -Any Concentration check made to cast a spell, whether from damage, motion or distraction, adds the spell level of the spell being attempted to the DC. Thus, it adds twice the spell level.

    For example: If you were hit for 8 points of damage while attempting to cast fly, you would have to make a DC 24 Concentration check or lose the spell.


    Intimidate:

    -If you display your Strength in some way (such as by attacking with a non-finessed melee weapon) towards your target, you may use it in lieu of Charisma in your Intimidate check.
    -When you are attempting to Intimidate someone, your check is opposed by a Will save, adding in any bonus against fear and a +4 circumstance bonus if they are not already shaken or worse.

    Diplomacy:

    Is not used as-written. I will determine appropriate responses to your requests and objectives depending on your result.
    Note: This does not mean the skill is not used, and in fact it is one of the most often used.

    -Diplomacy gives a synergy bonus to Gather Information.


    Speak Language:

    It now requires 3 ‘class ranks’ in Speak Language to gain complete fluency with a given language. Partial fluency is also possible, as shown below:
    1 Rank: Rudimentary conversation with a limited vocabulary. Able to convey basic intentions, or obtain very common and straightforward information. Make a DC 14 intelligence check to understand general meaning of another conversation. Incur a -6 competence penalty to skills regarding the use of that language.

    2 Ranks: Casual conversation with an average vocabulary. Able to communicate effectively regarding common matters, generally understandable and able to understand conversation. Incur a -2 competence penalty to attempting to pass as a native speaker or debate or understand things of an unusual or obscure nature (such as matters requiring a Knowledge (the planes) skill).

    3 Ranks: Completely fluent. With some immersion and further practice, able to speak as well as a native speaker. Complete vocabulary.

    5 Ranks: Mastery. You have Mastered this language, including obscure or ancient forms of it. Your vocabulary is impressively extensive, and your understanding and command of the language enables you to flawlessly communicate with others. Gain a +4 competence bonus on language-based skill checks while using a language you have Mastered.

    -Spells such as Comprehend Languages and Tongues grant the equivalent of 2 ranks in all languages to their recipients.
    -Characters start the game with a number of class ranks in Speak Language equal to 1 + Int modifier in addition to their automatic languages.
    -People are considered to have rank 3 in their native language (such as Elven for elves), and 2 ranks in any other automatic language (such as Common for elves).


    Tumble:

    When you attempt to Tumble in combat to avoid an Attack of Opportunity, your tumble check is opposed by your opponent’s attack roll. Essentially, you still provoke but your tumble check serves as your AC. Your opponent must still hit your normal AC to hit you.


    Use Magic Device:

    -Increase base DCs by 5.
    -Add the spell level of any device that mimics a spell (such as a wand) to the DC.
    -Add half the caster level of any item that does not directly mimics a spell (such as pipes of sounding) to the DC.
    Last edited by Kizara; 2008-04-18 at 06:56 PM.

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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: DnD 3.5 Skill Changes

    I'm unsure about some of those categories.

    Use Rope and Survival? Maybe.

    Tumble, Balance, and Escape Artist? The first two, sure, but I don't recall Houdini being a remarkable tumbler.

    Similarly, Decipher Script and Forgery really don't seem to have any skills in common - they just both have to do with words.


    And personally, I support just dropping the Concentration Skill althogether - any damage and you lose the spell (but that's just me)!
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    Default Re: DnD 3.5 Skill Changes

    Nobody else has any feedback regarding these?

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    Default Re: DnD 3.5 Skill Changes

    Quote Originally Posted by Kizara View Post
    From my Tome of House Rules v1.5; Skill section.

    Feedback appreciated.

    Skills:

    Skill sets: Certain skills are combined together to form a ‘skill set’, these skill sets are levelled up (ranked up) as normal, and checks are made to them as normal. However, one generally only has specific bonuses to a particular skill in the set. For instance, in the Perception skill set, elves have +2 to Perception, but an eagle only has +8 to spot.

    You may not take Skill Focus in a skill set, only in a subskill of that set. You may however take a feat such as Acrobatic and have it grant you +2 to skills of a skill set. You must have all applicable class skills in the skill set in order to take a skill set as a class skill.

    Also, at the DM’s option, skills gained through a skill set do not count towards qualifying for things like feats or prestige classes.

    Scribing: Forgery and Decipher Script
    Perception: Spot, Listen, Smell
    Stealth: Hide, Move Silently, Sleight of Hand
    Tinkering: Disable Device, Open Lock
    Acrobatics: Tumble, Balance, Escape Artist
    Athleticism: Climb, Swim, Jump
    Survival: Survival, Use Rope
    Innuendo: Bluff, Seduction
    Generate some symmetry. Boost each up to 3+ skills if you can.

    Then allow purchase of a single skill for 1/2 of the cost of the set, and two for 3/4, three for 7/8, four for 15/16, etc.

    Hmm. That's a bit ugly. :/

    Still, I'd think a system that allowed someone with high spot, but crappy listen, should exist.

    Scribing: Forgery and Decipher Script
    Perception: Spot, Listen, Smell
    There is a smell skill? I'd be tempted to roll the detective motive into this as well.

    Stealth: Hide, Move Silently, Sleight of Hand
    Sure.

    Tinkering: Disable Device, Open Lock
    Hmm. Toss a craft into that as well?

    Acrobatics: Tumble, Balance, Escape Artist
    Should almost contain Jump.

    Athleticism: Climb, Swim, Jump
    Too bad there isn't a run skill.

    Survival: Survival, Use Rope
    Knowledge[Nature]?

    Innuendo: Bluff, Seduction
    I'd be tempted to add Diplomacy to that bundle...

    (Or gather information).

    Another idea: your "skill packs" could give other skills at 1/2 of the highest skill's ability free of charge.

    Concentration:

    -If you attempt to Cast Defensively and fail, you lose the spell, but still provoke.
    -Double the spell level (instead of merely the spell level) is added to any DCs that involve the spell level.
    -Any Concentration check made to cast a spell, whether from damage, motion or distraction, adds the spell level of the spell being attempted to the DC. Thus, it adds twice the spell level.

    For example: If you were hit for 8 points of damage while attempting to cast fly, you would have to make a DC 24 Concentration check or lose the spell.
    Casting Defensively is rapidly free, isn't it? With the DC going up at +1/2 levels, and the skill going up at +1/level... (Barring the trump wars of mage slayer type feats)

    Are you planning on reigning in the ability to get insane modifiers to a skill check? If so...

    You could make casting defensively act as a pseudo-AC. In order to exploit the AoO from casting, the attack has to both hit and beat the concentration check. Attacks that would hit but not beat the concentration check are attempts to exploit an opening that didn't actually happen.

    Intimidate:

    -If you display your Strength in some way (such as by attacking with a non-finessed melee weapon) towards your target, you may use it in lieu of Charisma in your Intimidate check.
    -When you are attempting to Intimidate someone, your check is opposed by a Will save, adding in any bonus against fear and a +4 circumstance bonus if they are not already shaken or worse.
    Problem: Will goes up with 1/2 to 1/3 of your level, Intimidate goes up with your level. They scale differently.

    Diplomacy:

    Is not used as-written. I will determine appropriate responses to your requests and objectives depending on your result.
    Note: This does not mean the skill is not used, and in fact it is one of the most often used.

    -Diplomacy gives a synergy bonus to Gather Information.
    Hmm. Maybe Gather Information into the Innuendo instead of Diplomacy.

    Edited to add that above.

    -Spells such as Comprehend Languages and Tongues grant the equivalent of 2 ranks in all languages to their recipients.
    What about dicypher script? How does that compare: in general, that skill is quickly trumped by spells...

    Tumble:

    When you attempt to Tumble in combat to avoid an Attack of Opportunity, your tumble check is opposed by your opponent’s attack roll. Essentially, you still provoke but your tumble check serves as your AC. Your opponent must still hit your normal AC to hit you.
    *nod* -- if you bar the massive bonuses you can get for skills (a +10 to skill item is relatively cheap, much cheaper than the same to most other d20 rolls), to-hit grows roughly as fast as skills.

    However, this does cause problems for Rogues, who really need mobility to not suck.

    So, as a suggestion:
    Rogues get a +Rogue Level/2, rounded down, dodge bonus to Armor Class against attacks of opportunity caused when you move out of or within a threatened area. A condition that makes you lose your Dexterity bonus to Armor Class (if any) also makes you lose dodge bonuses. Rogues also get a +Rogue Level/2 bonus to Tumble checks made to avoid AoO.

    That allows high level Rogues to avoid AoOs (if with less ease than they could before your change), while not making Tumble the current "I'm sorry, your battlefield control build sucks" skill that it is currently.

    Rogues can avoid the battlefield control build, but as a special class ability. :)

    You can generalize this to granting the same bonus to PrC classes on each level after they gain a +1d6 sneak attack.
    Last edited by Yakk; 2008-04-25 at 06:32 PM.

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    Default Re: DnD 3.5 Skill Changes

    Quote Originally Posted by Yakk View Post
    Generate some symmetry. Boost each up to 3+ skills if you can.

    Then allow purchase of a single skill for 1/2 of the cost of the set, and two for 3/4, three for 7/8, four for 15/16, etc.

    Hmm. That's a bit ugly. :/

    Still, I'd think a system that allowed someone with high spot, but crappy listen, should exist.
    It still does. The system is reverse-compatible. You can still take skills in only the subset, and indeed some times you have to. Also, you may want to.

    For instance, if you take Athletics you won't be getting the synergy to Tumble from Jump that you would by taking Jump individually. Also, you may not have all 3 skills in Athletics as class, so you may have to take Jump seperately.

    However, this is fairly complex and ackward to track during character development, but such is a neccessary evil of making a reverse-compatible system.

    And I know what you mean by 3 skills to a set, but its simply not practical with the skills that are there. The skill sets are by no means all of equal value, but honestly I don't think it matters terribly since they are always a great discount for your skill ranks.


    There is a smell skill? I'd be tempted to roll the detective motive into this as well.
    This was a convient way for me to include said phantom skill without making characters waste ranks on something so niche. Ever wanted to have a PC roll a check to smell something or know what a smell is? Well I have, and now I can.

    Hmm. Toss a craft into that as well?
    Since Craft itself is an abstraction of many different skills used in producing a product, I don't want to do that. Not to mention it is quite specific in its use.

    Should almost contain Jump.
    Indeed, except Athletics has that more sensibly.

    Too bad there isn't a run skill.
    Not a bad idea actually! I can do here what I did with smell and toss jump in with Acrobatics. Not 100% sure about doing that, but I'll dwell on it a bit.

    Knowledge[Nature]?
    Again, Knowledge (nature) itself is an abstraction with a wide application. I don't want to abstract it further. It's not a terrible idea tho.

    I'd be tempted to add Diplomacy to that bundle...
    I deliberately didn't put any of the communications skills in skill sets (seduction is a niche skill that is nearly bluff anyways, so that's less of an issue) because I didn't want to cheapen them or make their access easier. In my games, this skills are extremely useful and often powerful, so lumping them is dangerous.

    Another idea: your "skill packs" could give other skills at 1/2 of the highest skill's ability free of charge.
    Please explain further, although this sounds like it could make this system even MORE messy.



    Casting Defensively is rapidly free, isn't it? With the DC going up at +1/2 levels, and the skill going up at +1/level... (Barring the trump wars of mage slayer type feats)
    Well, I made the DC scale a bit faster, and apply more often. Yes, there will come a point where you can auto-succeed at it, I have merely delayed this point.

    Are you planning on reigning in the ability to get insane modifiers to a skill check? If so...

    You could make casting defensively act as a pseudo-AC. In order to exploit the AoO from casting, the attack has to both hit and beat the concentration check. Attacks that would hit but not beat the concentration check are attempts to exploit an opening that didn't actually happen.
    This is a valid idea that I had myself (its what I did with Tumble) that I still may end up going with. The problem being that Concentration has more applications then simply defensive casting, and having two completely different mechanics for different applications of the same skill is very bad.

    However, it does make quite a bit of sense and honestly I may just end up doing it.

    Problem: Will goes up with 1/2 to 1/3 of your level, Intimidate goes up with your level. They scale differently.
    Hence the bonus +4 to the Will save. It's also more likely to get bonuses on your saves then your skill checks (items, spells, etc). I'm not thrilled by this system, but it is simple to run and works more-or-less.


    What about dicypher script? How does that compare: in general, that skill is quickly trumped by spells...
    The SL system can be used to approximate one's ability to read the given language as well, although they are worded for spoken fluency. Is there any spell in particular that grants one the ability to read/decipher things that I didn't include that I should?

    *nod* -- if you bar the massive bonuses you can get for skills (a +10 to skill item is relatively cheap, much cheaper than the same to most other d20 rolls), to-hit grows roughly as fast as skills.

    However, this does cause problems for Rogues, who really need mobility to not suck.
    For one thing, Tumble ranks are cheaper now. For another, I do allow skill boosters (+5 Tumble item is 2.5k, like a cloak of elvenkind). It's supposed to be easier to boost Tumble then your to-hit roll, hence not screwing characters who rely on and thus want to invest in this skill. However, DC 15-20 is now no-longer auto-succeed regardless of opponent's skill.

    So, as a suggestion:
    Rogues get a +Rogue Level/2, rounded down, dodge bonus to Armor Class against attacks of opportunity caused when you move out of or within a threatened area. A condition that makes you lose your Dexterity bonus to Armor Class (if any) also makes you lose dodge bonuses. Rogues also get a +Rogue Level/2 bonus to Tumble checks made to avoid AoO.

    That allows high level Rogues to avoid AoOs (if with less ease than they could before your change), while not making Tumble the current "I'm sorry, your battlefield control build sucks" skill that it is currently.
    Not a terrible idea and well presented, but I don't feel it's neccesary as I have explained above. Rogues that really care about Tumbling will get the synergy skills (+4), spells (based on Jump, could grant +10 or higher) and items (+5 or higher if you got the money). Could a deadicated Tumbler beat a heavy melee at Tumble vs attack? Yep, but that's intentional. A non-deadicated one probably doesn't have a chance.


    All and all thank you VERY much for your critique, feedback and ideas. If you would like a look at any of my other homebrew/Tome material, please just ask.
    Last edited by Kizara; 2008-04-25 at 07:56 PM.

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    Default Re: DnD 3.5 Skill Changes

    This is quite similar to something I had been working on but forgot about.
    http://wiki.faxcelestis.net/index.ph...e=Skill_Groups

    So take that as my input.
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    Default Re: DnD 3.5 Skill Changes

    Quote Originally Posted by SweetRein View Post
    This is quite similar to something I had been working on but forgot about.
    http://wiki.faxcelestis.net/index.ph...e=Skill_Groups

    So take that as my input.
    That's quite interesting. My system works better with what I've done with the skill feats and I find that having a universal mechanic (skill sets only cost 1 rank) is better then a variable one (some skill sets cost 1 rank, some cost 2 or 3, etc). Honestly though, it's not a bad idea; although I don't like lumping all those knowledges together like that.

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