In His Shadow
House Rules are pretty much always negotiable, but I’d like for a rule to come up in play before we talk about changing it.
A New House Rule for Combat
Particularly since we might be getting 2 additional players, I would like to try out a house rule to make physical combat faster. First, initiative will be a set number – to act at a different time, hold your action. Otherwise, initiative is Wits + Dex. (This means less work for me keeping track). Attack rolls will be a roll, as usual, but against a difficulty, rather than a contested roll form the defender. It’ll be:
Attack = [Dexterity + Ability] vs difficulty of [Dexterity + Athletics, Brawl or Melee]
Damage = [Strength + Potence + Successes -1 + Weapon] vs difficulty of [Stamina + Fortitude + Armor]. This target number can never go below 4.
Full Defense = difficulty of [Dexterity + Ability +2] and [Stamina + Fortitude + Armor +2].
Update: spending a blood point on Fortitude will add Bruised health levels equal to your Fortitude score that last for a scene. At the end of the scene, you shrug off the damage to those health levels and they disappear.
Lastly, agg dealt would be limited to the level of the discipline being used. So if you deal 4 damage with Protean 2, you deal 2 agg and 2 lethal. I like this rule better than it being 4 lethal, but it is hard to implement if you are rolling and soaking damage. This also makes things like agg dealt with white phosphorus rounds easier to adjudicate (and a guy with a sniper rifle firing white phosphorus rounds can’t just kill every vampire in one shot).
But, anyway, I’d like to give that a try the next time you guys get into a fight and see how it goes.
Other House Rules
Here are house rules for Celerity, to try to deal with issues around the huge difference between characters with it and characters without.
Here are house rules for Obtenebration with the tentacle-monster issue.
Here are Possible House Rules that I am just considering.
Otherwise, we’re using V20. I don’t expect everyone else to have a copy, so for most things, Vampire Revised, or V3, is enough. I’m happy to explain changes as we go.
Humanity or Path score cannot be higher than Conscience/Instinct x2. Willpower cannot be higher than Self-Control + Courage. This is also true for NPCs.
Large differnces in Generation will make Disciplines harder to use. So, don’t be surprised if your attempt to Dread Gaze Lodin fails.
Humanity will determine things like how early you rise – most Paths count as 1/2 Humanity.
Influence is handled by way of Merits. There are three levels of each kind of influence: just plain Influence and then Control and finally Lock-down. Take Underworld as an example:
Underworld Influence (2pts): you can get meetings with movers and shakers in the underworld with some time and effort, and have some contacts who are in the black market. You can get your hands on some muscle as long as you can pay and it isn’t a suicide mission.
Underworld Control (4pts): you are a shot-caller, capo kind of person. You can probably get some muscle even for a suicide mission, and you can find out where big black market shipments will be.
Underworld Lock-down (7pts): you control the underworld in a given city. No one else can have anything more than Influence without your say-so or without defeating you in an Influence War. In a given night, you can access 3 or 4 points of various Backgrounds by calling in your favors, making threats and so on.
“Ride the wave” – when you frenzy, you retain control of your character, you just have all of your other priorities replaced with one priority – blood, violence or safety. If you indulge yourself in a frenzy, such that you would need to make a degeneration check or otherwise make things interesting, you regain one Willpower once you come out of it. For the Camarilla, this is a guilty pleasure. For the Sabbat, this is the blood of Caine giving you strength.