To celebrate our sixth session—and the fact that no one died (or even took a point of damage)—I thought I'd post the house rules we've developed in the last six sessions:
WeD&D House Rules
- WeD&D exists to have fun in the context of playing the Moldvay D&D edition
The Moldvay 1981 Edition of the Dungeons & Dragons rules shall be used as the prime reference for all rules
Any Mentzer rules or new house rules shall be introduced ad hoc and be approved by the group
This document attempts to list all house rules that we have adopted.
All participants in WeD&D can make suggestions for house rules
We only listen to music published in 1989 and earlier while playing WeD&D
Players are encouraged to bring music to add to the collection
WeD&D involves six characters who recur each session. The player of a character may be its creator or, if its creator is absent, another player who takes the role.
Players must sit in marching order from left to right facing the GM.
The position of caller cannot be held be a player attending WeD&D for the first time.
As the GM, I will endeavor to make all to-hit, damage and saving throw rolls in the open.
Wandering monster, trap checks and other exploratory rolls will be concealed.
Death of a character you created gives you the first pick for creating a new character. In order to exercise this privilege, you must attend the session following your demise.
If one of the six characters is killed and its owner cannot attend the subsequent session to exercise his or her privilege, characters can be created by new players on a first-come first-serve basis.
If you kill a character you did not create, you must provide the creator with a cupcake, cookie or brownie.
Taking over NPCs upon character death: If any NPCs are available for play upon the death of a PC, that player shall take on the roll of an NPC until the conclusion of the session. At that point, the player can decide to remain in the role of the NPC and thus elevate it to PC status or she can return the NPC to its former status and make her own new character
You may not deliberately suicide or kill off a character.
Moldvay has provisions for generating Hopeless Characters. We defined “hopeless” as a character with two or more penalties from stats.
Moldvay has provisions for rerolling hit point dice that turn up a 1 or 2. We have embraced this enthusiastically.
Tests against stats (d20 method) are used to resolve situations outside of the scope of combat, morale, reaction, saving throws and spells.
Making a firebomb requires a Wisdom check
Firebombs must be lit from an open flame
Firebombs require a missile attack to-hit roll to be made against the target creature
Firebombs ignite upon hitting on a 4+ on a D6.
An unignited firebomb may be lit with a successful melee attack with a torch.
If not in combat or simply attempting to block pursuit, there is no roll necessary to deposit flaming oil at a location.
Rest on 6th Turn: We are not using the rule that requires the characters to rest every sixth turn of exploration.
I believe it’s unnecessary given that the rate of exploration is so slow (usually 60’ per 10 minutes/1 Turn) and that combat lasts less than a minute but still still eats up a whole turn regardless of its actual duration in rounds.
Also, since you usually spend so much time talking, the 1/6th rest rule seems triply redundant.
Three watch rest: the rules in Moldvay are unclear how much time is exactly need to be considered rest. It says “a day” but what does that mean? B2 clarifies the point saying explicitly "24 hours are needed…." We have played with the rule that surviving three watches undisturbed in a dungeon allows for recovery of 1-3 hp per character and recovery of spells. I believe our ruling should override the clarification of rest in B2 and stand as we've played it.
Players determine the order of watches. If there is no encounter on their watch, they must rouse the next watch with a whispered “All quiet.” or similar. If there is an encounter, that player is responsible for raising the alarm.
Damage: We are using the optional damage rules for weapons as described in Moldvay. In addition, Moldvay states that the DM rolls for damage. While I see the clear benefit of this procedure, I am too stupid and disorganized to roll for each player's damage. Therefore, each player shall continue to roll his or her weapon and spell damage.
Initiative: We use the optional rule for initiative called “Paired Combat.”
Mining and Excavation: We have adopted the rather generous mining and excavation rules from the AD&D Dungeoneer’s Survival Guide. A STR check is also required.
Rest: Resting in town costs money. Each hit point recovered from rest costs 3D6 gold.
You may go into debt to your friends, the inn or local hospice
If the price is too high for rest, you may move on to another town and reroll the cost.
Travel: Travel overland or oversea via conveyance like caravan, post horse, roads, etc. costs money. Each hex traveled costs 2D6 gold.
If traveling to a new location for a new dungeon, newly created characters do not have to pay this fee. They join the group once they reach their destination and thus do not travel per se.
Javelins: Keep on the Borderlands describes javelins used by goblins, but there is no damage for javelin in Moldvay. I assigned them a damage of D4.
Sipping a potion of invisibility (as described in Moldvay) causes invisibility that lasts for D4+4 turns.
This list is numbered and subnumbered in its native form, but I can't figure out how to get the subnumbering feature to work in HTML.
For example, Firebombs are all under one heading.
But you get the idea.