AD&D: House Rules from Li Po's Campaign

The purpose of the game is for friends to enjoy wholesome fun together. The object of the game is for a group of imaginary characters to accomplish an imaginary, worthwhile task. For the group to be successful, each character must use his or her distinctive skills.

Events in the campaign world tend to occur so as to make for good stories and fun for the players.

Player characters are skilled professionals who arrive mysteriously with only their equipment. They begin with no relatives or property in the campaign world.

Good characters may not use deadly poison or cause unnecessary suffering. They must be willing to help decent folk in need.

There are no evil player characters. The foul fiends Joe and Sam will intervene if a player character does something really evil. One will attack the perpetrator for a few rounds, while the other will attack everyone who acquiesced to the misbehavior.

No player character engages in any practice that even remotely resembles real-life occultism. Magic takes the place of technology and applied psychology in our world.

No player character hates anyone because of his or her race.

The soul is indestructible. There is no involuntary alignment change, except from becoming undead (which should not happen) or becoming a lycanthrope (which is treatable).

The party is under the Blessing of Goodness while on good behavior. This prevents any of them from becoming undead. Further, if one member does something extremely foolish, it is 90% probable that this will not result in disaster for the rest of the party.

Likewise, the Blessing of Goodness causes undead and other unholy creature to shun, most of the time, the communities of good faithful people. Good NPC prayer groups may have surprising abilities to heal, restore, guide, and/or protect.

No player character can successfully attack or rob another. At most, a disruptive or bewildered player character can be restrained. Surviving player characters are free to leave the dead body of an uncooperative party member to be eaten by monsters.

The referee will not dictate the religious beliefs of any player character. "The gods" of mythology are metaphors for human ideals and ideologies, as well as comic characters, figures of fun.

At first level, every player character gets maximum hit points.

While on good behavior, the player characters can count on the support of the good clergy, including resurrections and restorative spells between adventures with no chance of failure.

Clerical "raise dead" and "resurrection" require a resurrection survival check if administered in the field.

If a character dies in the field and is well-liked by the other players, the death is likely to be "obscure".

"Reincarnation" administered in the field strips the character of all levels, but not of proficiencies. The other players decide the race or species of the reincarnated character. Character points accumulate again when the original level is reached again.

Constitution does not decrease as a result of being raised from the dead. The originally-generated constitution is the maximum number of times a character can be restored to life.

An attack roll of "20" gets another free attack immediately. An attack roll of "1" is a mishap (the referee's decision), with no attacks next round.

An ability check of "1" is exceptional success; even for an area attack, there is no damage. An ability check of "20" is at least a minor disaster.

Ability checks replace standard saving throws.

There are penalties (-4 or worse) if the party is doing something stupid. Ability checks are common, and all abilities are about equally common in an adventure. Usually these are d20, but characters with a low score sometimes roll d6.

Base movement of 12" means

Intelligence does not limit the maximum number of spells in the spellbook.

Good play earns points of intelligence, wisdom, and charisma as appropriate. If a new player has a good time, the character most responsible gains a point of charisma.

Completing a great quest earns up to 3 new ability points, or restores up to 4 lost points or levels.

In lieu of charisma and its derivatives, NPC reaction is determined primarily by role-playing. Does the fighter lead boldly? Does the cleric speak with conviction nad present a living faith? Is the wizard a learned speaker who seeks knowledge? Is the rogue witty and charming? Is the personality of the player character well-defined in any case?

Licensed adventurer are allowed to kill living creatures:

Experience points are awarded generously for good role-playing. There is no experience award for killing non-evil, avoidable monsters. There is a 100% bonus for bringing wanted criminals for trial, or exotic monsters for the zoo, instead of killing them.

Paladins are not turned by evil clerics and do not take damage from holy water. Their "detect evil" takes direct observation and full concentration.

"Double damage" doubles only the die roll.

In any doubtful case, discuss the probability with the group,then ask the dice. They always tell the truth.

For a cleric to affect an outer-planes creature, both check vs. level or hit dice on d20. Higher successful score wins.

Surprise is rolled or omitted depending on common-sense considerations.

Magic missiles do 1d6 points of damage each.

Holy water does 3d6 vs. unholy creatures, and if it misses, the targer must check vs. dexterity or be splashed for 1d6. Acid and burning oil do 1d6 damage and are considered dishonorable for use except against trolls.

Magic items with unlimited "detect" abilities are fueled by one's ability points, draining one for each use for the rest of the day.

Wands use one charge per level at which the effect is cast. Any number of charges may be used up to the user's level. Each casting of a spell from memory directly onto the wand restores one charge.

Any character with more magic items than levels will attract Joe and Sam.

Familiars are nothing more or less than highly-intelligent, talking animals. Wizards or clergy who have performed extraordinary services may obtain a small fairyland creature (brownie, pseudodragon, other), or a small extra-planar creature (little angel, little fiend), but no outlandish benefits or penalties result.

Pure illusions are never tangible, never cause pain, and never do physical harm. They do seem real and have many common-sense applications.

Levitated creatures who are dropped float safely to the ground.

"Sleep" and "Death" spells allow a save vs. constitution.

A roll to break "charm" can be made any time something is done or said that might reasonably make the charmed creature think something is amiss. Check three times vs. wisdom or intelligence, whichever is higher. If all succeed, the charm is broken.

Petrification spontaneously reverses, with a cumulative 1% chance yearly.

Casting a "Restoration" spell drains the caster of one level, which is regained after a number of days equal to the level restored. Casting a "Resurrection" prevents spellcasting for a number of days equal to the level restored. A "Wish" or "Gate" spell will cost something. These are in lieu of aging.

To research a new spell or magic item, a cleric needs to write a good essay on the appropriate virtue and read it to the group.

A wizard who flunks a spell may remediate only after gaining another level and finding a private tutor.

Volleys of arrows: Calculate the "roll required to hit" for the average archer in the group, calculate the number of arrows targeted toward a player character, and roll once to hit, modifying the "to hit" and "damage" on this table

Insanity Table: roll d12

Strength spell raises strength to 18, or 18/00 if qualified for extraordinary strength.

Spells from good clerics that cause injury ("Cause Light Wounds", etc.) do only subdual damage. Healing (hit points, disease, etc.) by evil clerics is always temporary (1 day/level).

The sects of the campaign world.

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reset Jan. 30, 2005:

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