Rule- Anytime you have a damage multiplier (ie. double damage), this multiplier only applies to the natural damage of the weapon. So, you don't include strength bonuses or specialization bonuses. For an example, a +2 longsword doing double damage would do (1d8+2)x2.
Rationale- Otherwise, really strong people can kill anything with a good critical. Strength is already enough of an advantage.
Rule- When a natural 20 is rolled, it is a critical hit. Use this table to determine the effects. Also, when a natural 1 is rolled, it is a critical miss. This means that the misser drops his weapon, or falls over, or something equally bad that the DM decides. The exceptions to this rule are: a 20 is not a critical hit if it is the only way you can hit; and a 1 is not a critical miss if it is the only way you can miss.
Rationale - This just adds a little color to the game.
Rule - Charging must be declared before initiative is rolled, and doubles your movement, gives you a -1 to initiative (good), and a +1 to AC (bad). You cannot do a missile attack on a round in which you charged, and you must move at least 1/4 your movement that round before you can perform any action.
Rationale - The PHB rules make charging too beneficial. Everybody would charge all the time.
Rule - You can move 1/2 your movement and still perform an action (drink a potion, swing your sword, cast a spell, etc...).
Rationale - People who are doing things move slower than people who aren't.
Rule - An extra weapon can be used in your off-hand with the normal penalty system used in the PHB. However, instead of just one extra attack, the extra weapon will afford you the full attacks allowed for that weapon.
Rationale - I have always played it this way. I just like it more.
Rule - First of all, shield can be a weapon proficiency. If the proficiency is not taken, the shield works normally, according to PHB rules. However, if the wielder has the proficiency, the shield functions much better. The AC bonus it provides is level based. For fighters, the bonus is (level/2 + 1). For non-fighters, it is (level/2). In all cases, round down, but the bonus can't be below 1. And, of course, shields are stil only useful for a certain number of frontal attacks.
Rationale - Shields aren't powerful enough if they only provide a bonus of 1. At high-levels, there would be no point for a fighter to waste his time with a shield when he could get an extra volley of high-damage attacks (extra weapons).
Rule - Whenever two people are in melee, disengaging from the melee is difficult if one person won't allow it. So, if one person tries to disengage (move away), the other person has the option to spend an attack or a shield block. This attack is then used to force a comparative strength check (both make strength checks. Whoever makes it by the most wins) between the two. If the disengager wins, he can move away freely. If he loses, he is stuck in the melee. The preventer can use as many attacks as he wants, to keep multiple targets near, or to force multiple strength checks on a single person. Note that the preventer can do nothing if he has already spent all of his attacks.
Rationale - This rule was created so it is possible for people to be "protected". As the PHB rules stand, there is no way to interpose yourself between an enemy and a friend, becuase the enemy can just move around you and attack the protectee. However, this rule allows you to block an enemy and keep him in place, as long as you keep beating his strength checks. Check out Back Attacks for a related rule.
Rule - Whenever someone succesfully disengages from melee, that person must be careful not to be back attacked. If the person "withdraws", which means moving at 1/2 current movement or less, he can move away without being back attacked. However, if the person does not withdraw, he is subject to a back attack. This means the other person in the melee gets one free attack against the disengager. He gets this attack even if he has already spent all of the attacks he has. And, the attack is at +4. And, if the back attacker is a thief, the attack is a backstab (still with only a +4).
Rationale - If you run away from someone, you show your back to him.
Rule - Bow specialization is exactly the same as in the PHB, except, you also get the extra attacks like a melee weapon. So, 1st -> 3 attacks. 7th -> 4 attacks... and so on. Also, a bow specialist has the option of giving up one attack in order to get a +1 on the rest of his attacks that round. This only works with his bow attacks. And, specialization in bow costs 3 slots instead of the normal two.
Rationale - I used to have an archer class. I realized it was just too specific, so I dumped it. This allows for the existence of archers. Otherwise, just the stupid point-blank stuff isn't really worth it.
Rule - It is impossible to use your missile weapon against someone who is meleeing against you. So, if you try to use missile attacks against a foe attacking you with a melee weapon, you can use any missile attacks that come before his first initiative. But, after that, all of your missile attacks are nulled.
Rationale - This just makes sense. Plus, it evens out the increased bow specialization power.
Rule - Crossbows decrease the effectiveness of armor by 2. This usually means a +2 to hit vs. armored opponents. However, with padded armor (Ac:9), it only means a +1.
Rationale - Without this, crossbows just blow ass compared to bows. Plus, it reflects the penetration power that crossbows actually have.
Rule - Every non-psionicist still has the chance of having some sort of psionic defense, as according to this table:
Rationale - Otherwise, psionics are just too powerful. A 1st level psionicist could easily mind-rape a 30th level wizard from afar.
Rule - A psionicist can give up a power slot in order to get any of these improvements to one other power:
You must give up a science slot to get the improvement to a science.
Rationale - As it is in the Psionics Handbook, giving up a power is not even close to worth it. Therefore, there is no real way to increase your ability in a power. This system adds a little more variety to the psionicist without unbalancing him.
Rule - Spellcaster's get to memorize a certain number of total spell levels, instead of a set number of spells per level. This means that if the PHB says a cleric can pray for two 1st and one 2nd, this is just 4 spell levels. This means four 1st, or two 1st and one 2nd, or two 2nd.
Rationale - This gives the spellcaster more options without really increasing his power. It also solves the problem of being able to memorize a 4th level spell, but only having one that isn't very useful.
Rule - The max. number of spells/level are determined by this table instead of the PHB one:
|Intelligence||Max # Spells|
Rationale - It makes no sense that a guy with a 19 intelligence can know as many spells as a guy with 25 intelligence.
Rule- There is a new thief ability called perception. Information about it can be seen below in Finding Secrets. Because of this extra ability, thieves get 33 points per level instead of 30. However, they still start with only 60.
Rationale- I started perception for the sake of secret door finding, and then it just naturally progressed into a thief ability. I like it.