The bloody shoreline/House Rules

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Falling

Involuntary falling happens at initiative 0 (similar to how lair actions happen at 20). This allows for a little bit of cinematic play in falling. Because it's more cinematic, held actions can involve moving to save someone.

I also remove the 20d6 damage cap on falling because there shouldn't be a point in levelling up where jumping from orbit is the best way to get to the planet. Ie. I have 121 HP, its actually impossible for me to die from falling, i just jump from space. Even at 80 health its totally worth risking it as the avg on 20d6 is 70.

Say for an example the PCs are on an airship 350ft up and there are two harpies. The harpies are at initiative 20 and 10.

RAW:

A PC throws bolas at a harpy. It dies instantly (Takes 20d6 damage).

HR:

Bolas are thrown at 20-init harpy at 15. 10-init harpy has a chance to fly over and spend its action saving it.

Bolas are thrown at 10-init harpy at 5. There's a little bit of time for something to happen, but it doesn't and the harpy dies at 0 (Takes 35d6 damage).

And held action examples

RAW:

I hold an action to save our Wizard if she gets knocked off the edge of the ship by a harpy. That's not how held actions work and she dies instantly.

HR:

I hold my action to save a PC that gets pushed off the ship. We roll some dice and things have a chance to happen.

Inspiration

Receiving DM inspiration happens as usual (ie. Good RP, unique resolutions). Feel free to call me out for not awarding it. I hope the coins will remind me to, though. There is also an added thing we'll be doing in this game.

At the start of each session, each player writes a note of three things they want their characters to achieve. These can be long term, short term, a mix.

A completed goal awards inspiration, as do large steps made towards a long term goal. The standard rule of "If you have inspiration, you can't gain it" still applies, though!

These can be simple ("It's been a while since <character> got some, short term goal for this session is to get laid") or not so simple ("Arya has a list of names she repeats to herself every night" -- crossing a name off the list will award inspiration). The aim is to make characters have actual goals and things they want to get done.

Out of combat rolls

I want to try to minimise out of combat rolls somewhat. Some will still apply, but if you're not in a super rush, most things aren't really hard enough to require a roll. They really just add busywork and don't contribute to the experience. Especially if you use natural 1/20 rules. Imagine if in reality every time you cooked dinner there was a 5% chance that it's totally inedible (or poisons everyone. Or burns down your kitchen). That's once every 3 weeks.

Trying to jump over a wall while not being chased by the cops? 10+acrobatics. "Failure" on something like this literally just adds time. Ie. DC on the wall is 15, 10+acro is 12 == success, but it takes 18 additional seconds (ie. rounds equal to amount missed by).

While exploring a dungeon, while walking around, each PC picks an action and we assume 10 on it. Looking for enemies, checking for traps, drawing a map, etc.

I realise that this might feel unfair if a trap is triggered even when someone has specified that their action is the check for traps, but I'll going to be lowering the DC by 5 to accommodate the lack of rolls (so insisting on a roll would only increase the DC by 5 and still probably result in a fail). We'll workshop this as we go anyway.

In my notes, I'll have DCs, followed by names and a blank spot that I'll update. I will have a 'master' sheet with compressed stats for each PC. Players will check over the numbers at the start of sessions (while writing the inspiration note on the sheet).