View Full Version : Fiery Diamond's non-RAW rulings (evaluate subjectively please)

Fiery Diamond
2010-03-05, 03:14 AM
Hey all.

So, as you may or may not know, I DM on a regular basis. I'm currently running a gestalt campaign with a bunch of non-optimizers. Only one of the players actively tries to make optimal choices. So anyway, I intend to have this thread have a series of houserules and "ad hoc"-type rulings set forth here for you all to evaluate based on your personal opinions. This means I don't want anyone saying "But by RAW..." Don't try to be objective. I actually want your subjective responses.

Anyway, to set the stage, I should probably begin with a little description of my campaign and players/PCs.

Campaign Setting & Class Levels
Ten thousand years ago, a great civilization of elves and humans (but mostly elves) stretched across many continents. It had highly advanced magic and magical technology. Now, only underground ruins belonging to that society still exist, and each continent is completely or nearly completely isolated from the next. Magic is very common, but not highly advanced. Wizards are extremely rare, but sorcerers are commonplace. Magic items are fairly easily available, but only for things that aren't worth more than, say, 25K GP.

NPCs are either commoners, experts, or PC classes. Commoners and beginners in other fields are levels 1-2. Run-of-the-mill individuals in a line of work are 3-4. Professionals are 5-6. Experts are 7-8. Top of the line are 9-10. Champions are 11-12. 13+ is reserved for superheroes and supervillains.

Gestalt is very rare in world, but not unheard of. Most of the upper echelon (9-12) are gestalt, and most of the rest are not. The PCs are gestalt, since it is a gestalt campaign.

Lanei: Elven teenage girl. Bard//Cleric (currently 9th). CG, but based around the concept of, to use the words of the player, "mind-f*ing." No, she really is Good, mostly, she's just a little...um...sadistic when it comes to messing with people's heads (reserved for enemies only). Loves researching the ancient civilization and diplomancing. Twin sister of Nali, and is color-swapped from Nali.

This player thinks she knows lots about D&D. She doesn't. She often complains she's not powerful enough and that she's doing too much with just healing.
::Champion of the trickster god, the CN Thellis

Nali: Elven teenage girl. Rogue//Ranger (currently 9th). CG. She's a glaive-wielding tank. She's fun to be around. She loves fighting and gets mildly frustrated when people think she needs more help in combat than her friend who is getting eaten by a gargantuan dire shark (yes, this happened). She looks like a drow, but there are no drow in my campaign; it is a genetic elven quirk that used to be more common than it is now. Has a wolf (using druid advancement, and I'm allowing to be made awakened).

This player is fairly new to D&D (this is her first campaign that lasted more than 3 sessions). She does not play her character to her strengths (tanking rogue, not using sneak attack, etc.), but she has the most fun roleplaying.
::Champion of the trickster god, the CN Thellis

Sabir: Young adult half-elf woman. Monk//Sorcerer (currently 9th). LG. She's primarily a blaster, but has also taken polymorph (which I have given a very mild nerf). She is disciplined but knows how to relax and have fun. She always obeys legitimate authority even when it causes problems for her and frustrates her. Doesn't get along well with Lanei, but gets along great with Nali.

The most experienced player, and the only one whose D&D experience matches my own. Knows more about non-core material than I do, but sometimes demonstrates a startling lack of knowledge about core itself. ("What? Casting defensively completely nullifies my ability to make an attack of opportunity?")
::Champion of the sun god, the LG Sol

Andorith: Young adult elven man. Druid//Ranger (currently 9th). NG. An archer, he is also a battlefield control caster who focuses more on battlefield control than anything else. I changed the way wild shape works entirely, so he's not fighting in animal form. Mainly sticks to himself, but also gets along well with Sabir and Nali. Has a Tiger (allowing to be awakened).

Same experience as Nali's player, but he's the optimizer (sorta) of the group. He's a BC person, and he is the main person going outside of core (I have a "no non-core unless you run it by me first" rule) with my permission. I think I have the most to fear from him at high levels for true breakage.
::Champion of the moon goddess, the NG Luna

So, I have, like most DMs, lots of house rules (and I home brew a lot, too). Some basics:

Using Potions is a move action that provokes AoO.
Pricing of magic weapons and armor is a little different.
No prep action needed for splash weapons.
Sorcerers can spont metamagic without increasing casting time.
Skill checks: Nat 20s permit an additional roll, add half rounded up; a second nat 20 means you get to roll a third time and add a quarter, rounded up; etc.
Intervention Points: Like Action Points from UA, but more powerful. Symbolizes their being chosen by the gods.
Ways to get extra feats and spells via experience point expending and roleplaying.
...more as I remember them

All right, anything I've forgotten? Oh, yeah, the Twins have a weird connection, that, among other things, makes them immune to harmful mind-affecting effects unless they both fail saves to the same effect at the same time.

And now, on to the part that I initially wanted to post this thread for (I kinda got sidetracked with the background info). I'll start with just one and post more later.

1) The party is in the middle of fighting a certain enemy sorcerer//rogue 10. I was dumb and made some bad choices (like not giving him dimension door...what the hell was I thinking?) so they currently have him cornered. However, I want to let the players get a sense of "not everything is a cakewalk." Because of the intervention points, the PCs essentially can't die in this fight, but knocking them into the negatives will send the message. So I pondered, and I realized something. My sorcerer has a necklace of fireballs (he's fire focused). This brings up a few points.

A) He's called the Mad Blazer. This is because he was turned into an insane pyro by an experiment gone wrong. This is an excellent opportunity for me to give him special powers. What to give him? Immunity to fire, of course! But unlike normal magic immunity, it wouldn't protect his belongings. (Ruling 1: what do you think?)

B) The necklace of fireballs states that Bad Things (TM) will happen if you fail a reflex save against fire and the necklace does as well. It leaves just what happens with the explosion up to the DM to decide. Hm.... *evil grin* I'm sick of all this evasion and (in the monk//sorcerer's case) improved evasion crap. I need to increase the save DC so they don't avoid damage. Mwahahahaha! I'll rule that all the fireballs go off at once, but instead of allowing multiple saves, since they are simultaneous they have a single save that adds +1 to the base DC of the fire spell cast by the Mad Blazer per fireball from the necklace in addition to having all of that damage. Remember, at the moment the PCs can't actually die, so I'm not worried about a TPK. (Ruling 2: What do you think?)