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DiBastet's Homebrew

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  • DiBastet's Homebrew

    I think one of the best parts of AGE is how easy it's to mod it. So this is a topic for me to share my own houserules and homebrew. I hope that more forum goers do something similar, so people searching the forum might mine their topics for ideas.

    Advantage / Disadvantage
    Goal: Reduce the number of situational modifiers.
    Impact: You can't accumulate lots of positive or negative modifiers on your roll. People may think that's good or bad.

    This rule emulates one of the best rules found in the D&D 5th edition ruleset. Instead of using situational modifiers of up to +/-2 (like aiming, being on higher ground, or penalty because it's raining) character suffer Advantage or Disadvantage.

    When you have Advantage to a test you roll an extra colored die. After rolling the four you remove the lowest one (colored or not), and use the highest of the colored ones as your Stunt Die.

    When you have Disadvantage to a test you do the same, but you remove the highest rolled dice and use the lowest of the colored dice as your Stunt Die.

    As in the original material, it makes no difference if you have multiple instances of Advantage or Disadvantage; you just roll one extra colored dice. If you have both Advantage and Disadvantage on the same roll they cancel each other and you roll as normal. It doesn't matter how many conditions are giving one or another.

    Classless AGE
    Goal: Not being hindered by class framework since not all settings are equal.
    Impact: Character creation slightly more complex.

    Create your character as per the normal rules, but don't pick a class. Choose 4 attributes as primary, the others are secondary. Then follow this progression.

    Level 1: 3 talents. 4 picks among weapon groups or armor types. Must be proficient in lighter armor types first (so if you want heavy you must also choose light and medium).
    Level 2: 1 talent, 1 primary focus.
    Level 3: 1 talent, 1 secondary focus.
    Level 4: Novice on 1st specialization, 1 primary focus.
    Level 5: 1 talent, 1 secondary focus.
    Level 6: Journeyman on 1st specialization, 1 primary focus.
    Level 7: 1 talent, 1 secondary focus.
    Level 8: Master on 1st specialization, 1 primary focus.
    Level 9: 1 talent, 1 secondary focus.
    Level 10: 1 talent, 1 primary focus.
    Level 11: 1 talent, 1 secondary focus.
    Level 12: Novice on 2nd specialization, 1 primary focus.
    Level 13: 1 talent, 1 secondary focus.
    Level 14: Journeyman on 2nd specialization, 1 primary focus.
    Level 15: 1 talent, 1 secondary focus.
    Level 16: Master on 2nd specialization, 1 primary focus.
    Level 17: 1 talent, 1 secondary focus.
    Level 18: 1 talent, 1 primary focus.
    Level 19: 1 talent, 1 secondary focus.
    Level 20: 2 talents, 1 primary focus.

    Ability advancement works as per the basic rules.

    Emulating Classes
    Take a look at the Free-Form Essentials by Draco Druid for talents that emulate class abilities.

    Dynamic ammo and charges
    Goal: Reduce bookkeeping and created a unified charges system making use of the Stunt Die.
    Impact: Must imagine each attack roll as a series of attacks and opportunities instead of one shot. Players might tear their hair out when ammo runs out after a single attack.

    Items counted by units and that aren't single-use, like ammo but also medical supplies, lockpicks or even units of food or water, don't have units anymore. Instead each unit on your character sheet is a "charge". A charge is a generic non-specified amount good for some uses.

    Spending Charges
    Whenever you make a test that can use said charges and you roll a 1 on the Stunt Die you spend a Charge. It doesn't matter if the action was successful or not, at the end of the action the charge is spent and you may erase it from your character sheet.
    In the case of missile weapons each turn of attack represents an ideal number of shots fired and maybe quick reloads instead of a single shot per attack. When you finally spend a charge your weapon is not loaded anymore, and you must spend the appropriate action to reload it. That is finding new clips, switching quivers, etc.
    Any attack has a chance to spend a unit of ammo, even ones gained from stunts. Because of that users of weapons with expensive ammo might prefer well-placed shots (Mighty Blow and Lethal Blow) instead of bursts or double taps (Automatic Fire and Lightning Attack).

    Other items
    This rule applies to other items besides ammo, like healing and skill kits. For example if you roll a 1 on a stunt die while picking a lock at the end of the action you run out of lockpicks. In certain settings this might apply to such things as Wands, or the magical effects of "per day" magic items.

    Single-use items and charges
    Single-use items are exempt from this rule. This includes grenades, missiles (as in rocket propelled grenades, not as in "missile weapon"), vials of potions, acids, etc.
    That said, you still may apply this rule to these items. Just increase their price to something closer to x5 (or if using the wealth as resource rule, increase the availability one step) and they may be used as charges. So instead of buying a vial of options you buy a charge of potions. When someone uses such an item without a roll (ie drinking a potion), ask for the player to roll 1d6, and on a roll of 1 the charge is spent.

    Dynamic encumbrance
    Goal: Allow for simple encumbrance and carrying limits without too much bookkeeping.
    Impact: Adds some bookkeeping since basic FAGE has no encumbrance. Strength's value increases.

    Disclaimer: This rule is adapted from Savage Armory.

    This system defines Load Limit in significant items. A significant item is one that weighs roughly 5-14 pounds, and you can carry a number of such items equal to your Strength score without penalty. Particularly heavy items may count as two or more significant items, while light ones may count as half (0,5) item or even nothing (-).
    After this limit you suffer a -1 penalty to all Dexterity-based tests and calculations. After double this value you suffer -2. After triple you suffer -3. If you exceed four times your Load Limit you can only stagger around at a crawl speed and may not take major actions.

    Under this system, armor's penalty is as follows: Leather 0, Mail 1, Plate 2. Heavy versions' penalty is 1 higher. Your total Encumbrance penalty is your Load Limit and Armor penalties added together.

    Under this system you spell strain is your total Encumbrance penalty, so mages will usually want to travel light.

    Item List
    While you may convert your own items to this rule, you may also look into this modern age list to find appropriate weights in Significant Items if you want.

    Exploding damage dice
    Goal: Create more danger and chaos with damage, where even a simple dagger may feel a mighty foe.
    Impact: Increased lethality, of course. Expected value of d6 increases from 3.5 to 4.2. Probability points that increased randomness favors the underdog. Since players usually win the underdog tends to be opposition that always loses.

    Whenever you roll a 6 on a damage dice, you would add it to the total and roll that die again. You keep rolling it until it stops coming as 6. Please note that this only applies to d6. Weapons that cause d3 or d2 don't benefit from this rule.

    Exploding dice were one of my favorite mechanics in Savage Worlds. Exploding dice on tests have no place in AGE, but since the system uses only d6, and it favors +dice instead of +modifier to increase damage, exploding damage dice fit nicely.
    This rule favors ways of adding more dice to your damage instead of adding static numbers. Backstabbing, mighty and lethal blows, as well as larger weapons, become even better choices.

    Fatigue damage
    Goal: Create a more gritty setting where the weather, hunger, thirst or magic may wear down characters.
    Impact: Increased lethality. Characters feel less heroic.

    Disclaimer: This rule is adapted from The Esoterica from Thedas Vol. 1.

    Fatigue damage is similar to normal damage, but should be noted apart because it heals differently.
    The only way to reduce Fatigue is through sleep or over time with no strenuous activity. Healing, magical or mundane, cannot remove Fatigue.
    Characters suffer Fatigue from continual exertion. An example might be a forced march to reach a destination more quickly. Obviously a forced march through snow will be more fatiguing than a forced march through green fields. Storytellers can also use Fatigue damage to represent the inclement weather, thirst, famine or even disease.

    Receiving Fatigue
    Fatigue is an effect the GM can apply to characters at their discretion. Here are some examples:
    Every hour of narrative exertion: 1d6.
    Failing an exploration Advanced Test: 1d6.
    Receiving magical healing: Depending on setting, 1d6 / amount healed.

    Recovering Fatigue
    Breather: A character removes a number of Fatigue points equal to their Constitution during a Breather.
    Long Rest: After one night's rest a character recovers 5 + Constitution + Level fatigue.
    Unconscious character: An unconscious character will only heal fatigue after a long rest.

    Option: Fatigue as real wounds
    Many people like to interpret HP as a mix of luck, stamina and plot armor, meaning that if you have 120 HP then an arrow hitting you doesn't really "hit" your. Since fatigue heals more slowly than normal damage and can't be recovered by mundane or magic healing, only rest, you may decide that if a character suffers a "real" wound (like, say, a hit that causes an Injury), some or all of that damage may be fatigue instead of normal damage. This works very well in settings with no real healing magic: "Healing" magic gives you a second wind, while doing nothing for real wounds.

    Injury and recovery
    Goal: A more gritty game where characters might suffer grievous wounds.
    Impact: Added bookkeping, complexity and lethality. Game more "gritty". Medical skills more useful.

    Disclaimer: This rule is adapted from The Esoterica from Thedas Vol. 1.

    Suffering Injury: If the Stunt Die on any attack roll is a 6 and the target suffers Damage equal to or more than their Constitution value (after armor), they have suffered an Injury.
    Alternative - Shock: If using the Shock rules, whenever a character suffers Shock he also suffers an injury.

    To determine which Injury the target has suffered, roll on the following table and apply the result. A character can only ever receive one of Injury in each ability score.

    1-3 - Light Injury:
    -1 to one ability. Choose appropriate or at random. 10 successes to heal.
    4-6 - Serious Injury: -2 to one ability. Choose appropriate or at random. 15 successes to heal.

    Recovering from Injuries
    Injuries heal over time. The recovery process can also be aided by experienced healers and magic to repair them faster. In order to be eligible to Recover Injuries a character must have had a full night’s rest. This effectively sets the healing Threshold of each Injury at one day per test.
    Recovering from Injuries is an Advanced Constitution (Stamina) test with a TN of 9 + 2x the number of injuries the Character possesses. Light injuries have a success threshold of 10, Serious injuries have a threshold of 15. You must heal each Injury separately, and you can choose to which injury each daily test applies to.
    Healer: An Intelligence (Healing) test may be attempted in place of the Stamina test instead, by the character or someone else.
    Magic Healing: You may also use supernatural healing in addition to a normal Heal test, effectively providing two healing attempts per day. Treat the Casting Roll as a Recover roll for a single Injury suffered by the target. This spends MP equal to the Stunt Die result.

    You will notice that there a character sustaining multiple injuries might have a TN too high for normal success to be possible. In this instance they are obviously in a very bad shape and need total bed rest in order to recover. After 5 days of complete Bed Rest you receive 5 successes to apply to the Success Threshold of any injuries you see fit. You may divide it among many injuries or apply it all to one injury.

    Modern AGE
    Goal: Using AGE rules to play a modern game, obviously.
    Impact: Must add some rules.

    You don't have to pick a background. Instead you make some basic concept choices and get a number of Design Points to design your character as you see fit. Design Points are what provides your starting adjustments. The freedom players have to decide these traits is based on the fact that in the modern world, you really can learn just about anything you wish to. For a normal game, players have 6 Design Points to work with. They should help tell the character’s backstory.

    1 - A new Focus.
    2 - A talent.
    3 - An Ability increase.

    Firearms and Automatic Fire
    Firearms are added as weapon options. Most of them require no additional rulings, except automatics. To represent the essentially different and deadly nature of automatic firearms, add the following to the list of possible combat Stunts.

    Automatic Fire (2 SP): You make a second attack with an automatic firearm against the same enemy or a different one within range and sight. You must have a loaded automatic firearm to make this attack. If you roll doubles on this second attack roll, you do not get any additional stunt points.

    Automatics Style
    Firearms focus.
    You use automatics to deadly effect.
    Novice: You are very good with suppressive fire. When using automatic firearms you may use the Automatic Fire stunt multiple times, but if you do no opponent may be attacked more than once.
    Journeyman: You can perform the Automatic Fire stunt for 1 SP instead of the usual 2.
    Master: You are not limited to multiple opponents with the Novice ability.

    Shooting Style
    Bow or Firearms focus.
    You have potent accuracy.
    Novice: When you take the aim action while using a Bow, or a firearm you gain a +2 bonus on your attack instead of a +1.
    Journeyman: You can reload a bow or firearm that requires a Minor action with a Free action, or a bow or firearm that requires a Major action with a Minor action.
    Master: You can perform the Lightning Attack stunt for 2 SP instead of the usual 3 when using a bow or firearm.

    Item List
    One possible item list, including stats for firearms and modern armor, may be found here. This list makes use of dynamic encumbrance and wealth as resource, but may be used without them.

    Other Rules
    It's highly recommended that you use the no weapon proficiencies and wealth as character resource rules for all modern games.

    No HP bloat
    Goal: God, making combats faster.
    Impact: Increased lethality, both player's and enemy's. That may be good or bad. Less drag.

    AGE doesn't have increasing damage by level; the damage you cause at lower level isn't that much less than what you cause at higher levels. So Dice + Constitution at each level is way too much. Players only receive + Constitution at each level. Apply the same to opponents, or as a quick and dirty rule just halve their maximum HP.

    Fixed amount
    Some people enjoy fixed HP. If you want that kind of game everyone's health is 10 + 5x Constitution. Large creatures receive +10, and huge creatures +20.

    No MP spellcasting
    Goal: Grittier game where spellcasting is a tough choice. Must use the Fatigue rules.
    Impact: Decreases spellcaster potential (but not power). Makes 15 minute workday harder to safely achieve.

    Instead of having MP costs, anything that would cost MP instead causes fatigue damage equal to its cost. MP related effects (like draining, reducing cost, armor strain, etc) work as written, but apply to fatigue. MP recovery methods reduce Fatigue instead.

    Option: It might be interesting to reskin some MP using abilities as "martial" abilities and open them to non-mages.

    No weapon proficiencies
    Goal: Enable more concept choices to those that still want to use classes.
    Impact: Players may "play against type" as brawny rogues or mages. You have to decide if that's a problem.

    AGE already has different ability scores for heavy and light weapon fighting, minimum strength, and weapon group focuses. All characters know how to use all weapons. No other rule is affected (like focuses).

    Goal: Simulate wound level, stunning, pain, and similar mechanics found on other games.
    Impact: As many rules here, increased lethality. Even a mighty character with 100+ HP will be stunned by damage from time to time. However the same also applies to big scary monsters.

    Disclaimer: This rule is adapted from Eternal Darkness.

    Your Shock value is equal to 5 + 2x Constitution. Whenever you suffer more damage from a single attack than this value your character is stunned for 1d3 rounds. During this time he can't take Major actions and his move is halved.
    If using the Injury rules, whenever a character suffers shock he also suffers an Injury.
    A character that is already stunned by shock can't be stunned by shock again until the effect wears off. That means that it's impossible to "stunlock" someone.

    Less lethal option
    Characters are stunned for a single round.

    Theather of the Mind Positioning (no positioning)
    Goal: Simplify combat futher by making positioning more narrative.
    Impact: Grid-based combat impossible. Combat can still be kept tactical, but tactics differ.

    Under these rules, players specify in generic terms how their characters position themselves during a 15sec turn. These positions give bonuses that apply both to players' rolls and to any enemies that attack them, and may affect what kind of action they may take. Only players choose positioning. Each character may choose one of the following three positions:

    Offensive: Characters on offensive position are in the thick of the fight, acting as a vanguard to their group. They wade thru their opposition, but are open to attacks.
    Effects: Both the character and any opponent attacking him receive +1d6 damage in case they hit.
    Allowed actions (optional): Melee attacks, minor actions.

    Neutral: Characters on neutral position are engaged in the fighting but no surrounded by enemies, like being on the flanks.
    Effects: None, neither to the player's or opponents' rolls.
    Allowed actions (optional): All from offensive, plus ranged attacks and major actions except spellcasting and other long actions that require concentration (like trap disarming).

    Defensive: Characters on defensive position are protected by their friends and are harder to reach, but also find it harder to reach their opponents.
    Effects: Both the character and any opponent attacking him suffer -2 to their attack (Optional: Or +2 to the target's defense if you prefer that way).
    Limitation: There must be at least two other characters on offensive or neutral positions for each character that wants to be in the defensive. For example, in a group of 4, if one character is on offensive and another on neutral, one of the remaining two may be on defensive, but not both.
    Allowed actions (optional): All actions.

    All modifiers apply to both the player and to anyone attacking him. So for example any opponent attacking someone on offensive position gain +1d6 to damage if they hit, while any opponent attacking someone on defensive position suffer -2 to the attack. Note that only players choose positioning.

    Important: This rule works better with a no-initiative or side-initiative rule (players first, then opponents, consequences like being defeated only apply after both sides acted). But if you want to keep using initiative with this rule, then at the beggining of each round players should choose a positioning.

    Wealth as character resource
    Goal: Treat wealth as a resource you can apply to solve things, instead of as treasure.
    Impact: Less bookkeping. As wealth becomes a resource, you have to invest on it, or else you'll always be poor. "Being rich" becomes a valid "skillset" to bring to a character party.

    As AGE isn't a system about getting better gear and spending treasure, there's no need to count every copper the character has. The Wealth levels don't represent your lifestyle; it's supposed that that your character is somehow barely able to maintain whatever lifestyle the concept demands. The talent represents your Buying Power, or funds, the extra money you have access, and unless you choose this talent these funds are of the Meager variety.
    Your buying power categories correspond to modifiers, and when someone needs to buy something nontrivial, they have to make a roll to succeed. It doesn't matter how your character procures his items.

    You’ve got some spare change. A lot of it.
    Novice: Your purchasing power is Modest instead of Meager. +1 to Resource tests.
    Journeyman: Your purchasing power is Comfortable. +2 to Resource tests (total).
    Master: Your purchasing power is Impressive. +3 to Resource tests (total).

    "Buying" things
    You may procure up to two items of your buying power per adventure, without the need for a test. Outside of that, follow these guidelines. Big purchases (5+) might count as a level higher.
    Less Expensive: You may procure as many of these items as you want, within reason.
    More Expensive: You can try to procure an item a single category more expensive only once per story. Once you decide to procure, your chance in this story is spent, success or failure. You just can't realistically afford items two categories more expensive; you might even get your hands on them, but as far as paying for that you might as well give yourself as a serf to a loan shark instead...
    More items: After your 2 items limit you have to make a test for every item of your level that you want to acquire.

    Starting Gear
    You start the chronicle with 4 items of your Wealth level. You may trade 2 items for a single item of one wealth level higher. You may also trade 1 item for 5 items of lower levels. You may also have as many Free items as you want, within reason.

    Target Number and Value
    To convert prices, or to choose an availability range for items not on the list, use the following:

    Free: No TN. Up to $5 / 1sp.
    Meager: TN 9 to acquire. Up to $50 / up to 10sp.
    Modest: TN 11 to acquire. Up to $500 / up to 50sp.
    Comfortable: TN 13 to acquire. Up to $5.000 / up to 100sp.
    Rich: TN 15 to acquire. Up to $50.000 / 100+sp.

    Item List
    While you may convert your own items to this rule, you may also look into this modern age list to find appropriate values if you want.

    Secrets of Alancia gritty dark fantasy pack
    Goal: Make it gritty and deadly.
    Impact: Players should face violence and combat with dread instead of gleeful expectation, or there will be lots of dead characters.

    Dynamic Encumbrance + Fatigue Damage + Injury + No HP bloat (fixed amount) + No MP spellcasting + Shock.

    Characters and opponents have fewer hp; there is a shock threshold that may stun and cause lasting injuries to them; damage dice may explode making it easier to reach that shock threshold; carrying too much armor and gear might be a problem because of encumbrance; and solving things with spellcasting might be dangerous because of fatigue damage.

    These are the rules that I use for my dark fantasy setting. Now you can understand why my players avoid fighting at all and usually send soldiers, allies and thralls to do so...

    Coming Next

    Freeform spellcasting
    Theater of the Mind positioning
    Last edited by DiBastet; 28th October 2016, 05:45 PM.
    DiBastet's Homebrew - My own homebrew. Use them, mine them for ideas, change them, as you see fit.
    AGE of Darkness - Converting World of Darkness to Fantasy Age.
    AGE of Wacraft - Playing AGE in Azeroth.

    Age of Homebrew - Links to other homebrew. Feel free to add more.

  • #2
    Re: DiBastet's Homebrew

    Nice compilation, thanks for that!

    One point of the top of my head:

    You probably should specify that players need to designate 4 abilities as "Primary" and the rest as "Secondary", in regard to your "uni-class"-Progression
    Fantasy AGE Homebrew Wiki: Take me to the wiki!

    Free-Form Fantasy AGE System: Essentials - Version 2.5

    DracoDruid's Fantasy AGE: The Thread | Version 2.4

    Fantasy AGE - Revised Alchemy Rules: The Thread | Version 2.0

    Free-Form Dragon Age System: The Thread | Essentials


    • #3
      Re: DiBastet's Homebrew

      Originally posted by DracoDruid View Post
      You probably should specify that players need to designate 4 abilities as "Primary" and the rest as "Secondary", in regard to your "uni-class"-Progression
      Quite right.
      DiBastet's Homebrew - My own homebrew. Use them, mine them for ideas, change them, as you see fit.
      AGE of Darkness - Converting World of Darkness to Fantasy Age.
      AGE of Wacraft - Playing AGE in Azeroth.

      Age of Homebrew - Links to other homebrew. Feel free to add more.


      • #4
        Re: DiBastet's Homebrew

        Originally posted by DracoDruid View Post
        Nice compilation, thanks for that!
        One point of the top of my head: You probably should specify that players need to designate 4 abilities as "Primary" and the rest as "Secondary", in regard to your "uni-class"-Progression
        I may have mentioned this elsewhere on the forums. AGE could be simplified if primary and secondary abilities are all the same regardless of class.
        Primary - Dexterity, Strength, Will Power, Perception
        Secondary - Accuracy, Communication, Constitution, Fighting, Intelligence
        [URL=""]Herding Dice[/URL] - A tumblr where I put things about Adventure Game Engine design.


        • #5
          Re: DiBastet's Homebrew

          Originally posted by mdlthree View Post
          I may have mentioned this elsewhere on the forums. AGE could be simplified if primary and secondary abilities are all the same regardless of class.
          I feel that reducing character options like this is a really bad idea. it removes the strengths and weaknesses of each class and forces everyone into the same boat. that is not fair to players who wish to form a hand-to-hand combat specialist or one who is a brutal barbarian. to remove and reduce Primary Abilities removes the fun of a multi-skilled set of characters. now, you play as you will, but this to me just seems too unfair.
          [URL=""]Age of Alchemy[/URL]
          [URL=""]Battlemap Rules based on HeroScape[/URL]
          [URL=""]Kingdom Hearts/Final Fantasy - Playtest version[/URL]
          [URL=""]Magic Items Repository Volume 1[/URL]
          [URL=""]Magic Items Repository Volume 2[/URL]
          [URL=""]FAGE-TitansGrave Random Character Generator[/URL]
          [URL=""]20 races for FAGE...enjoy[/URL]
          [URL=""][/URL] This is my new log Site i just created. it is going to have fantasy short story snippets for you guys. Enjoy


          • #6
            Re: DiBastet's Homebrew

            Sorry that I do not have the time for a thorough response at the moment but it looks promising. I am interested to see your approach to magic.
            Star Wars: AGE of the Empire: An ever-expanding adaption of the Star Wars universe utilizing the AGE ruleset and compatible with the Fantasy Age Basic Rulebook.

            Expanded Classes Playtest: Adding the Bard, Swashbuckler, and Templar classes. As well as introducing archetypes that gives players different options from the start of play.

            Dustin & A very uncreative name for my blog on my RPG-related creative projects.