House Rules: Both Strange and Cool

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Volt875
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House Rules: Both Strange and Cool

#1 Postby Volt875 » Thu Nov 15, 2012 12:24 am

Greetings all. Well seeing as how my first topic died (Alas poor Savage Stories...I hardly knew ye) I have thought of yet another discussion topic. House Rules! Love em, hate em, think the DM's a jerk cause of some of em, we all know em. So here's the topic.

What are some of the house rules you use? Also have you ever encounter any really good or just really odd ones. Doesn't have to be just Savage Worlds either.

Here's one I thought of at my last Savage Worlds game. Now when I run I don't form a discard pile I just let players keep the initative cards and deal out new ones. The rule is if your cards form a poker hand you get a free benny.
"...If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. But sad or merry, I must leave it now. Farewell!"- Thorin Oakenshield; The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

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#2 Postby tigerguy786 » Thu Nov 15, 2012 2:43 am

I like that rule, I might have to use that.

One house rule I use is additional Hindrances.
"Well, you do know what those who underestimate tigers always say right?"
"What?"
"They scream, 'Oh god help me I'm being mauled to death by a tiger.'"

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#3 Postby Volt875 » Thu Nov 15, 2012 3:25 am

Tigerguy786, what do you mean by additional hindrances? Just let players take as many as they want? Also, glad you liked it ha ha. As a note on that rule I do still take all the cards in when the joker gets dealt as to reshuffle.
"...If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. But sad or merry, I must leave it now. Farewell!"- Thorin Oakenshield; The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

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#4 Postby Takeda » Thu Nov 15, 2012 6:11 am

I give out Notice free at D6. I also grant a free D6 in a suitable (non-primary) skill that fits with the character background.

What do I mean by "non-primary": No AB spellcasting, no Fighting, No Throwing or Shooting.

If a Joker comes out in the first hand or two I keep dealing initiative until the combat is over or the other Joker comes out. Fast! Furious! Fun! in my mind does not mean pausing to reshuffle the SW Monster Deck of Cards more than is necessary.

I've been tempted to give our a Bennie whenever the BigBadEvilGuy draws a Joker.

The other thing I've done is allow people to spend a Bennie for a coincidental but beneficial happenstance. I.E. They need to find a car to chase the BBEG and someone spends a Bennie to find the car keys under the visor or the valet key in the glove compartment of a car they break into. It gives the players some creative control over their characters which is really cool. If it's just not appropriate I'll simply veto ... if it's REALLY unlikely then it'll cost more Bennies from the player or players that are going to contribute.
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#5 Postby Wibbs » Thu Nov 15, 2012 6:15 am

I give a player a small amount of narrative control if they get three raises on any roll.

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#6 Postby Boldfist » Thu Nov 15, 2012 1:16 pm

I add or subtract the Size bonus to Intimidation rolls. If a Size +8 dragon Intimidates you he adds +8 to his roll and subtracts 8 from your Intimidation roll against him if you are Size 0 (normal human).
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#7 Postby Kythkyn » Thu Nov 15, 2012 2:10 pm

After standard character creation we give a "starting advancement".
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#8 Postby Zadmar » Thu Nov 15, 2012 2:22 pm

In my current campaign I don't award experience points, instead I award half an advance per session. Players can spend half an advance to raise one skill below its linked attribute, or they can wait until they've got a full advance. I also allow new skills to be purchased for half an advance rather than a full advance.

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#9 Postby Planecreek » Thu Nov 15, 2012 3:26 pm

Neither strange nor cool, but some houserules are:

- Called Shot to the head is -2 to hit and +2 damage.
- Called shot to the leg causes agility roll or fall prone
- Size penalty/bonus to hit is +1/-1 and +2/-2 for large and huge
- the two handed weapon strength die bump
- Some around grappling - raises don't cause shaken, they allow a free grappling action that normally could be taken on the following round while grappling - damage, move, throw, etc

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#10 Postby tigerguy786 » Thu Nov 15, 2012 4:01 pm

Tigerguy786, what do you mean by additional hindrances? Just let players take as many as they want?


I mean that they can take 1 additional major and 1 additional minor for a total 2 major and 3 minor

Kythkyn wrote:After standard character creation we give a "starting advancement".


I've heard of this before

Another house rule I forgot about is I use 'Bottomless Bennies' for the GM. It is self balancing because I don't want to give a single character 10 bennies.

The other thing I've done is allow people to spend a Bennie for a coincidental but beneficial happenstance. I.E. They need to find a car to chase the BBEG and someone spends a Bennie to find the car keys under the visor or the valet key in the glove compartment of a car they break into. It gives the players some creative control over their characters which is really cool. If it's just not appropriate I'll simply veto ... if it's REALLY unlikely then it'll cost more Bennies from the player or players that are going to contribute.


This is one I'm going to work in next session
"Well, you do know what those who underestimate tigers always say right?"

"What?"

"They scream, 'Oh god help me I'm being mauled to death by a tiger.'"

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#11 Postby Drue » Thu Nov 15, 2012 7:29 pm

Changed this
Failure: remains Shaken; may only perform free actions
Success: no longer Shaken; may only perform free actions
Raise: no longer Shaken and may act normally

To this
Failure: remains Shaken; may only perform free actions
Success: no longer Shaken and may act normally

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#12 Postby Averjoe » Thu Nov 15, 2012 7:33 pm

I have a house rule that only applies to one of my games. The players are all part of a small time heavy metal band called Malignant Tumor, who frequently have strange encounters with the occult. It has a very Sam Raimi vibe to it.

So, since the game has a heavy metal music theme, if a player draws the ace of spades for initiative, it is treated as a joker, but only if they sing "Ace of Spades" like in the chorus of the Motorhead song. The person that draws the card must be the one do it and no one is allowed to remind them. If they fail to notice/remember, then it's just an ace.

My players love it. :mrgreen:
The opinions expressed in this post are just my two cents. YMMV :)

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#13 Postby Drue » Thu Nov 15, 2012 7:35 pm

Healing, from one wound on a success plus one on a raise, to one wound for a success plus one wound for each raise.

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#14 Postby Volt875 » Thu Nov 15, 2012 9:56 pm

Averjoe wrote:I have a house rule that only applies to one of my games. The players are all part of a small time heavy metal band called Malignant Tumor, who frequently have strange encounters with the occult. It has a very Sam Raimi vibe to it.

So, since the game has a heavy metal music theme, if a player draws the ace of spades for initiative, it is treated as a joker, but only if they sing "Ace of Spades" like in the chorus of the Motorhead song. The person that draws the card must be the one do it and no one is allowed to remind them. If they fail to notice/remember, then it's just an ace.

My players love it. :mrgreen:


That's awesome!
"...If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world. But sad or merry, I must leave it now. Farewell!"- Thorin Oakenshield; The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien

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#15 Postby SeeleyOne » Thu Nov 15, 2012 10:20 pm

Volt875 wrote:
Averjoe wrote:I have a house rule that only applies to one of my games. The players are all part of a small time heavy metal band called Malignant Tumor, who frequently have strange encounters with the occult. It has a very Sam Raimi vibe to it.

So, since the game has a heavy metal music theme, if a player draws the ace of spades for initiative, it is treated as a joker, but only if they sing "Ace of Spades" like in the chorus of the Motorhead song. The person that draws the card must be the one do it and no one is allowed to remind them. If they fail to notice/remember, then it's just an ace.

My players love it. :mrgreen:


That's awesome!

Funny as I always sing that (at least in my head) whenever I see that card. It is a good thing, I guess, that most people can sing better than Lemmy :)
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#16 Postby Lord Stone » Fri Nov 16, 2012 7:40 am

I have several changes to the default skillset as a common houserule:

Athletics: Incorporates Swimming and Climbing, also used for running.

Socialize: Replaces Streetwise and also incorporates social reading, which is removed from Notice.

Investigation: Incorporates scene investigation, which is removed from Notice.

Manipulation: A new derived statistic equal to 2 plus half your character's Persuasion. This is the TN for social reading attempts on your character.

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#17 Postby Zadmar » Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:12 am

Lord Stone wrote:Athletics: Incorporates Swimming and Climbing, also used for running.

I've seen a few people add an Athletics skill, but I actually prefer to handle it like Knowledge:

Athletics

Athletics is the physical equivalent of Knowledge, and incorporates Climbing, Riding and Swimming. Before beginning the campaign, the GM should prepare a list of specific Athletics skills (in the same way as you would for Knowledges).

Anything not covered by a specific Athletics skill comes under Common Athletics. This works exactly like Common Knowledge, except that it uses either Agility, Strength or Vigor (GM's discretion).

In most campaigns there will be Athletics (Climbing), Athletics (Riding) and Athletics (Swimming), but these won't always be appropriate. A desert world might provide little use for Athletics (Swimming), for example, but Athletics (Skiing) could prove useful on a frozen world, and a zombie apocalypse game might even include Athletics (Cycling).

Note that Throwing is primarily a combat skill, and therefore isn't included in Athletics.


I even created a physical equivalent of Jack-of-All-Trades:

Natural Athlete
Requirements: Novice, Agility d10, Strength d6, Vigor d6
You have considerable natural athletic talent. Whenever you make an unskilled roll for a Strength-based or Agility-based skill, you may do so at d4 instead of the usual d4–2.

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#18 Postby Virgobrown72 » Fri Nov 16, 2012 8:34 pm

Depending on the setting, I may extend the professional edge Ace to including the Riding skill as well...
"That which does not kill me, makes me Shaken..."

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#19 Postby pelwer » Sat Nov 17, 2012 1:43 am

BENNIES
• If a Player rolls snake eyes, the GM gains a Bennie. If GM rolls snake eyes, each Player gets a Bennie to give to any PC of their choosing.

RUNNING
• You may either roll your Running die or take half. Player must decide before rolling.
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#20 Postby Jonah Hex » Sat Nov 17, 2012 5:12 am

Drue wrote:Changed this
Failure: remains Shaken; may only perform free actions
Success: no longer Shaken; may only perform free actions
Raise: no longer Shaken and may act normally

To this
Failure: remains Shaken; may only perform free actions
Success: no longer Shaken and may act normally


Several of my house rules have been rendered redundant by SWD (nerfed bolt, no getting up for free when attacked in melee). One still in effect is a compromise between the above and the normal shaken rule:

On a success but no raise, you act as normal but it counts as an action (-2 MAP on any actions taken this round).

I use the SWEX Incapacitation table because the Deluxe one is just plain too nasty!

The damage needed over toughness to take a wound increases geometrically, not linearly (Toughness plus 4, plus 8, plus 16, plus 32, etc.). This keeps the chance of inflicting one or two wounds at the normal levels but drastically reduces one hit incaps without eliminating them entirely (First Rippers session with new players, one rolled 41 damage with a knife in the second round of the first combat).

Wild Card Edges: These add a d6 to damage instead of doubling damage but activates on Aces as well. Less spikey. I like less spikey.

Advances spent on skills yield double the skill points but only half those points can be used on combat/AB skills.

I've used various rules for henchmen - the step between wild cards and extras - wild die, multiple wounds, bennies (one of the three).

No xp for bennies, since...always; I used this in my first game, Evernight, using the original edition.

No xp at all, generally level up when dramatically appropriate. Actually I use this rule for virtually every system I run unless xp are directly spent as character points (GURPS, M&M).
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