Living Document. A work in progress.
This set of house rules is intended to be a living document. This campaign is at least as much the players’ as it is the DM’s. Any suggestions for changes or improvements to the house rules are highly encouraged, and will be given full consideration. Any updates or changes to these house rules that are incorporated, will be communicated in monthly updates to this post. Therefore players are recommended to check back here at least once monthly to review the house rules.
Full DM postings will typically occur twice a week. Any deviation from this schedule will be communicated to the players as soon as it is known. Players should post at least once after each full DM posting. Role-playing is encouraged, so feel free to post as frequently as you wish in order to develop your character. If a player does not post within three days of a DM post, (without having given prior notice) the actions of that player for the turn in question will be determined by the DM (based on character history, common sense, and the actions of the rest of the group). Shorter DM posts will occur more frequently these will be updates, usually be to answer character questions, provide NPC dialogue, or react to character movements,
and are intended to quicken the pace of the game.
If for any reason, a player will be unable to respond to turns for awhile (e.g. business trip, holidays, busy week, etc.), a short note to that effect, along with an estimated return date would be greatly appreciated. Obviously, emergency situations are exempted. The DM will control the character during any such periods. If a player fails to post for a period of 10 days without providing advance notice, then that character is subject to removal from the game.
If a player decides that they wish to permanently leave the game, I would appreciate a short note informing me of this (this note should be sent to me only, and not posted to the entire group). Once notified, I will either seek a replacement player for that character, have the DM take over the character as an NPC, or write the character out of the campaign – whichever is deemed most appropriate by the DM.
Once an action or words are posted, they cannot be retracted or taken back. It is done. If a player posts contradictory information regarding his actions, the DM will have sole determination over what actually occurs.
Postings to the entire group should only include information that the entire group can see, hear, or be aware of. (Note that this does not include character thoughts that others would not be aware of!) If you wish to perform some action that only part of the group will be aware of you should only post that particular information to the applicable players. The DM will
provide information after each post as to where to post any replies.
Similarly if the party splits, or if one or more players pursue their own goals, then those postings should be kept private to the DM and any players who are also present, rather than publicly posted to the message board. If you wish to conduct some action in secret, unbeknownst to any members of the group, you should only post that particular information to the DM.
Actions should be described in terms of how the other characters would see them. For example, instead of posting, “Ezekiel will cast a sleep spell upon the goblin horde.”, a mage character should post something to the effect of: “Ezekiel dug into the belt pouch hanging from his side, threw a pinch of fine particles into the air and proceeded to intone cryptic words while moving his hands about in odd gestures.” The player would then post
privately to the DM, “I cast my sleep spell at the goblin horde.”
Any out-of-character questions or comments that are included within your postings must be distinguished as such by placing “OOC” in front of such comments.
Any postings that are not sent to the entire group should contain the word “PRIVATE” in the subject heading. It is then up to the recipients whether the information contained within should be shared with other characters.
The DM must be copied on all correspondence, both public and private.
Profanity is acceptable in postings, provided it is not overused, and providing that is within character dialogue and appropriate to that character.
In the event of inter-party friction or conflict, please remember that you are playing a role. All conflict and bad feeling should at all times be kept within character. Never flame or attack any other player directly and out of character.
All posts should be written in the past tense.
Time & Weather
Time and weather will be observed in the campaign. The campaign begins after the New Year’s Needfest celebrations, 585CY. The date and the observed weather will be noted in the DM’s posting at the beginning of each game day if the characters are able to be aware of such things.
At the end of each game week, the DM will deduct a sum of money from your character’s funds. This deduction will be communicated to you privately and will be calculated to cover the costs of rent, lodging, food, drink, clothing or any other mundane costs accumalated by daily living in the big city. Any other costs or purchases made will be covered within the normal
course of gaming (eg. healing costs, armour repair, unusual purchases). If the character cannot cover the costs, the repurcussions will be roleplayed (eg. eviction, going hungry etc.). If a character has any form of income, this will also be calculated into the weekly expenses and may even result in monetary gain if the income offsets the outgoings.
In the unfortunate event that a character of a player in good standing dies, and is unable to be resurrected, restored, reincarnated, etc., the following will occur. The DM will allow the player to submit a new character for inclusion in the campaign. The following restrictions will apply:
1. The character must be of a different character class, race and alignment than the one who just died.
2. The DM will provide information regarding starting wealth, equipment and magical items, as well as the appropriate time for the character to join the campaign.
3. Acceptance of the proposed new character into the campaign is at the DM’s discretion.
Awarding of experience points will be given at appropriate points within the game, and will be kept in private postings between DM and player. Experience points will be awarded as per the DMG (3ed) but particularly for the following actions (in no special order):
1.) Problem-solving, cleverness, inventiveness, etc.
2.) Good role-playing, playing within character motivations & alignment, etc.
3.) Posting frequency and quality of posts.
Level advancement will take place at the experience point levels specified by the 3ed D&D Core Rules. However, occasionally (and at the DM’s discretion) for the characters to obtain certain skills or feats they may need to seek out training.
Also discussion amongst characters of these game mechanics (Hey, Jhaax what level are you now?) is strongly discouraged.
Sorcery and Spellcraft
Sorcerers do not exist within my campaign as presented within 3ed rules. The few sorcerers that do exist are extremely rare individuals. Special dispensation from the DM will be required to play a sorcerer.
Mages however are as per the Core Rules. However if designing a mage character for inclusion as a new player, please use only those spells presented within the Players Handbook (3ed) or the Wizards supplement Tome and Blood. If other sources become available these house rules will be updated, but as it stands special dispensation from the DM needs to be
granted before any other spells may be used.
This campaign will utilize material spell components for spell-casters. Spell-casters will be responsible for making sure they have an adequate quantity of spell components on hand. It will not be assumed that a spell-caster will simply have them�she must acquire them. Spell components are not required when casting spells from scrolls.
All die rolls will be conducted exclusively by the DM, and will be largely invisible to the players – they will only see the results. My intention is that this campaign will read like a multi-authored piece of fiction, rather than as a mechanical game.
Fumbles and critical hits will be used in this campaign differently from the Core Rules to reflect the potential danger of lethal combat. As all game mechanics and dice rolling will be effectively ‘invisible’ to the players the specifics of these rules are presented here.
Combat can be quite time-consuming in a PBEM campaign. Since I do not want combat to take away from the other elements of the campaign, I would like to be able to conduct combat sequences in as few postings as possible. In order to accomplish this, players will need to provide as much information as they can once a combat sequence begins. Please consider providing information such as:
1.) Contingency plans once hit points fall below a certain level.
2.) A prioritized list of opponents.
3.) Note one or two special tactics you are on the watch for.
4.) Note what you intend to do if your opponent flees; and if other members of your party flee.
5.) Note what actions you will take, and when, during the combat sequence (what weapons, what spells, special defenses, special attacks, contingencies, etc.).
This is not intended as an exhaustive list. It simply illustrates some examples. The bottom line is that I plan to conduct combat sequences to their full completion based on the initial information given me by the players. The more information players provide, the more likely the combat will go as they intended it.
I will only interrupt a combat sequence with additional postings if it is an extremely pivotal event in the combat, if unexpected/unanticipated circumstances dictate that it is necessary, or if the combat extends beyond 5 rounds.
New players are always welcome. The DM will also consider players with multi characters (although two would be the limit). When designing a character for submission please bear the following in mind.
1) Feel free to choose race, class, level and alignment, but please use only those options presented within the Players Handbook, DMG, or Tome and Blood or in these house rules(and these includes skills, feats, and equipment magical or otherwise). If other sources become available these house rules will be updated but as it stands special dispensation from the DM needs to be granted before any other options may be used.
2) Initially, please concentrate on your characters background and personality. The higher the level you intend to start out at, the more detailed your history needs to be. If you intend to play a 12th level druid, it needs to be clear how your druid got to 12th level. Of course personality and motivations should always be detailed. Well-rounded and balanced, or
original and interesting characters stand a much better chance of being included than stereotypes or cliches.
3) Again if designing a higher level character you may feel free to suggest any magical items than have acquired, although these will need to come from the above noted sources and be approved by the DM.
4) If you are not familiar with 3ed rules but still wish to play, this is not a problem. Simply design your characters background and personality, and provide as much information as you can and the DM can design the game stats from your specifications.
5) The DM reserves the right to approve or deny and character submissions and also to change any details of a character that he chooses.
All rules not covered within these House Rules are at the discretion of the DM, but will generally correspond with those presented in the 3ed D&D Core Rules, Core Rule Supplements.
At times I may be using published adventures from either Greyhawk, other D&D, or other roleplaying sources. These adventures will be altered to a greater or lesser degree. If any player should happen to recognize any of these sources they will be expected to keep their player and character knowledge separate at all times.
Of course I will also be using the various Greyhawk source books that detail the Free City and its environs and again players are expected not to abuse any knowledge that they may have.
URBAN LORE (Wis)
Class Skill: Bard, Fighter, Rogue, Paladin
Cross-Class: Barbarian, Cleric, Druid, Monk, Ranger, Sorcerer, Wizard
Use this skill to survive the intrigues of the great metropolis, spot pickpockets working the crowd, recognize corruption amongst officials, assess quickly political and social climate, or to find a particular neighbourhood or guild.
CHECK: You are comfortable in the biggest of cities, you can keep yourself and others safe and negotiate the corruption, bureaucracy and intrigues of city life.
10: Spotting pickpockets working the crowd/Recognize corruption.
15: Finding a particular neighbourhood or guild in an unfamiliar town
20: Reading between the lines, analyzing gossip, emotions etc. to assess political/social climate.
RETRY: To analyze a climate, retry’s may be made every week. The result of that check applies until the next check is made. All other situations allow for retries as the situation presents them.
SPECIAL: If you have 5 or more ranks of Gather Information, you can get a +2 synergy bonus in all applicable situations.
NEW PRESTIGE CLASSES
Vanguard (by Gary Gygax)
The vanguard serves as infiltrator and spell support on thieving missions. They are typically part of any scouting mission, using their thieving abilities to get them close enough to the locale and/or mark to use their spell and detection abilities to reveal guardians and other dangers. During missions, they coordinate group movement and increase the effectiveness of
their roguish compatriots through the use of their spells. Thieves’ guilds greatly value the services of vanguards, and actively recruit vanguards for membership in the guild, often offering many perks as enticement. Vanguards also prove valuable as spies for many military units.
Clerics who value wealth and other material gains above honest philosophical principles make the best vanguards. Multiclass bards, fighters, monks, and rogues also pursue this path. Multiclass wizards rarely become vanguards, but those that do provide strong spell support.
HIT DIE: d6
REQUIREMENTS: To qualify to become a vanguard, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:
SKILLS: Hide: 6 ranks, Move Silently: 6 ranks, Speak Language: Thieves Cant, Urban Lore: 4 ranks
FEATS: Combat Casting
SPELLCASTING: Ability to cast 1st-level divine spells
CLASS SKILLS: The vanguard’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Alchemy (Int), Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Disable Device (Int), Disguise (Cha), Hide (Dex), Intuit Direction (Wis), Jump (Str), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Open Lock (Dex), Read Lips
(Int), Search (Int), Scry (Int), Spot (Wis), Tumble (Dex), Urban Lore (Wis), and Use Rope (Dex)
SKILL POINTS PER LEVEL: 4 +Int bonus
Weapon and Armour Proficiency: Vanguards are proficient with the crossbow (hand or light), dagger (any types), dart, light mace, sap, sling, and shortsword. Medium-size vanguards are also proficient with certain weapons that are too big for Small vanguards to use but that still conceal easily: club, heavy crossbow, heavy mace, morningstar, quarterstaff, and rapier. Vanguards are proficient with light armour but not with shields.
SPELLS PER DAY
LEVEL 1st 2nd 3rd 4th
1st 0 – - -
2nd 1 – - -
3rd 1 0 – -
4th 1 1 – -
5th 1 1 0 -
6th 1 1 1 -
7th 2 1 1 0
8th 2 1 1 1
9th 2 2 1 1
10th 2 2 2 1
LEVEL ATTACK FORT REF WILL SPECIAL*
1st +0 +0 +0 +2 Detect Secret Doors (3/day)
2nd +1 +0 +0 +3 Detect Scrying (1/day)
3rd +2 +1 +1 +3
4th +3 +1 +1 +4 Invisibility (1/day)
5th +3 +1 +1 +4 Silent Spell
6th +4 +2 +2 +5 See Invisibility
7th +5 +2 +2 +5 Invisibility (2/day)
8th +6 +2 +2 +6 Nondetection
9th +6 +3 +3 +6
10th +7 +3 +3 +7 Improved Invisibility (1/day)
DETECT SECRET DOORS: At 1st level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of detect secret doors three times per day. The ability functions as the spell, with the vanguard’s level determing duration.
SPELLS: Beginning at 1st level, vanguard gains the ability to cast a small number of divine spells. To cast a spell, the vanguard must have a Wisdom score of at least 10 + the spell’s level, so a vanguard with a Wisdom of 10 or less cannot cast these spells. Vanguard bonus spells are based on Wisdom, and saving throws against these spells have a DC of 10 + spell level + the vanguard’s Wisdom modifier (if any). When the vanguard gets 0 spells of a given level, such as 1st-level spells at 1st level, the vanguard gets only bonus spells. A vanguard without a bonus spell for that level cannot yet cast a spell of that level. The vanguard’s spell list appears below. A vanguard has access to any spell on the list and can freely choose which to prepare, just like a cleric.
DETECT SCRYING: At 2nd level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of detect scrying once per day. The ability functions as the spell.
INVISIBILITY: At 4th level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of invisibilty once per day. The ability functions as the spell, with the vanguard’s level determining duration. This ability may be used twice per day at 7th level.
SILENT SPELL: At 5th level, a vanguard gains the silent spell metamagic feat as a nobus fea.
SEE INVISIBILITY: At 6th level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of see invisibility. The ability functions as the spell of the same name except that it is a permanent ability that requires concentration to activate. It takes a full action for the vanguard to use this ability for one round.
NONDETECTION: A vanguard gains the permanent supernatural ability of nondetection. This ability functions as the spell of the same name except that the duration is permanent.
IMPROVED INVISIBILITY: At 10th level, a vanguard gains the spell-like ability of improved invisibility once per day. The ability functions the same as the spell, with the vanguard’s level determining duration.
Vanguard Spell List: Vanguards choose their spells from the following lists.
1st Level: Comprehend Languages, Deathwatch, Detect Chaos/Evil/Good/Law, Obscuring Mist, Protection from Chaos/Evil/Good/Law, Sanctuary.
2nd Level: Darkness, Delay Poison, Find Traps, Remove Paralysis, Silence, Undetectable Alignment.
3rd Level: Dispel Magic, Glyph of Warding, Invisibility Purge, Locate Object, Meld Into Stone, Water Breathing.
4th Level: Air Walk, Freedom of Movement, Neutralize Poison, Sending, Status, Tongues.