Houserules/notes/suggestions

Thought I’d make a start on logging any house rules for the campaign, noting down any I’m thinking about using, and general other thoughts as they strike. Once we start, this will change to a list of rules we’re using rather than the general thoughts and ideas currently listed

- On mounted combat: when mounted, a PC and mount act at Initiative of the rider. Movement is shared: if the mount moves, the rider counts as moving in the same way ie. if the mount charges, the rider is charging. If the mount sprints, the rider is sprinting. In this way, it is impossible to use Rapid Shot or full attacks from the back of a moving horse (except 5’ steps, DM discretion). Mounted movement-related feats of the rider (ride by attack, apply to the mount ONLY WHEN RIDER IS MOUNTED. Normal movement feats (Spring Attack, etc) or charge feats (Overrun, Trample, Charge Through) apply only if the mount has them (DM discretion, as this prevents anyone without an animal companion or ‘awakened’ mount using such abilities).

- Drink potion as a move action rather than standard.

- Retraining feats, etc. Kingmaker has a lot more ‘downtime’ than most adventures so my current thinking is to allow you to choose to use some of this time training to allow feats to be swapped out, weapon feats changed to a different weapon, that kind of thing. I’d even consider a complete class swap so long as it’s logical for the character and suits their background/character, that kinda thing.

- Initiative. I will often use an initiative order in an out of combat situation that has a time limit. I find this gives everyone a chance to get involved and use their skills. However, rolling for initiative every time could get annoying for you guys so we could perhaps just go in initiative bonus order for non-combat situations and roll for combat?

- No XP. I have never liked the concept of XP so I don’t use it. Instead you’ll level up at appropriate moments for the story, usually when you’ve finished one of the ‘major’ quests and it will always happen at the end of a session so you can level up etc between sessions. [ Ed: Hero points possibly? Might be added thing to learn…] [ Darren: I like the sound of this idea will make it easier to keep track of where we are plus means we can be at the right level for encounters, however part of the kingmaker campaign rewards you for exploring with xp so not sure how you could use this but still make exploring useful?]

- Shopping. The available items to buy at the outset of the campaign will be VERY limited so I’ve suggested making sure you cover item creation amongst yourselves. Graham is doing Arms and Armour so I’d make sure someone is covering Wondrous items if only for making handy haversacks!

- Encumbrance. Yep, we’re using it. I don’t normally bother but for at least the opening few books it will be highly appropriate for this campaign so pack accordingly! [ Ed: This might mean having to assign equipment specifically to the mount – buy those saddlebags!]

- Food and drink. You’ll want some.[ Darren: Not so worried about taking this into account as I think it may be a bit too involved plus now that encumbrance is a integral part would like that nailed down first before we add more to the equation.] [ Ed: It will add to encumbrance, but Survival allows us to scavenge for food in the wilderness, which is a cool skill for us to use.]

- Riding. Mounts are a good idea for Kingmaker. Just don’t forget to buy the saddle or saddlebags. [ Ed: On mounts, can I use the reins whilst holding a heavy shield?] Answer: I’d say yes out of combat as the shield is strapped to your arm, but no if you want to gain the armour bonus as you need to have the arm free to move and block, etc. That’s where the whole “guide with knees” thing comes in I guess. [ Ed: I always thought guide with knees was for two handed weapon, archer and mage as they specifically do need to use two hands, but when jousting or charging in films, the rider has the reins held in his shield hand.]

- Marching/sleeping order. Once everyone has fully decided on their characters I’ll ask you to note down your standard travelling formation and who takes what watch at night. You can obviously change this at any time but I’ll use these in case of ambush or night attack.

- In character. I’d prefer if you try to speak in character as much as possible and avoid side conversations whilst others are doing so. [ Darren: I think this is a bit too much involved not really liking the idea don’t mind chatting to try get information and diplomacy but not talking in character] [ Ed: Specific dialogues with NPCs, we can probably handle, but outside that I’m not sure I’ll be comfortable beyond 3rd person or describing my characters intent. At school, I hated drama and I don’t wanna have to relive it ;-)]

- Critical hits. I’m considering getting hold of some of the critical hit/fumble cards, thoughts? [ Ed: Dear God, yes. I have PDFs for both if you want to print and make them, or this seems to be cheapest on eBay. Same guy has Fumble deck but pricier.] Also, A crit only counts if everyone sees it ;).

- Bonuses. I often give out bonuses to dice rolls based on good roleplay or acting in character. A good in character speech will net diplomacy bonuses, opting to swing from a chandelier across a room will maybe grant a bonus to next attack, stuff like that. [ Ed: You guys should really check out the PAX D&D events on YouTube to see several examples of Wil Wheaton describing epic actions and not even having to roll because the DM loves it.]
I’m looking at hero points and I’m on the fence about this optional mechanic. I’ve used the star wars system it seems to be ‘borrowed’ from and they tend to be a bit overpowered for the kind of minor bonuses I want to be giving out.

- Crossdressing. Normally I have a fairly strict ‘Boys play boy characters, Girls play whatever they want’ rule. Mainly this is because I’m yet to meet a guy who can roleplay a girl character convincingly, without it going down the route of getting silly/sexist. [ Darren: As your aware my character is female and I prefer to play female characters not for the sake of sexism but just always do, goes in hand with previous comment about talking in character. I will add that I have no intention of using this to any kind of advantage, I just want to enjoy the game and not get overly hung up on actually being my character.] [ Ed: Darren might be a casual racist (continuing the fine Norfolk tradition…) but I’ve never seen him be misogynist. Also, with his detailed backstory and the lack of female players, it opens up more avenues for the story to move down if we have a female character ie. if we come across a weeping widow cradling her sons corpse outside her burning shack, she is proabably going to react better to a female than the 3 burly, hairy (except Dan’s) men who probably look quite a lot like whoever caused her that pain in the first place (even if Langwens charisma score is shockingly low…)]

-Rules. Generally for the sake of pacing if I’m not sure on a rule or whatever I’ll go with whatever seems logical at the time. Between sessions I’ll probably look up whatever it was that had me stumped and go with the rules as written for the next time.

Houserules/notes/suggestions

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