House Rules

“Never in my house.. Ye abide by m’rules ya see…”

Character Examples Lexicon Equipment List as advertised in Black Market Global and Durability. For dealing out/gaining Experience, read Experience Points or Rites from the Spell List (High). Combat Attributes Anchor Fetters Advantages Skills Size Merits & Conditions & Powers. Creatures

We will try and keep to using the 1e Rules (1st Edition) but with changes which can be classified into Rules In-depth should be In-depth Rules.

2e House Rules

  • XP Costs: Including Beats, Flat XP, Conditions etc.
  • Combat: Intended to make it more deadly and less Wiff & Whittle.
  • Weapons have Accuracy & Damage Modifiers and Strength requirements.
  • Extended Healing Times: Bashing Damage in Days while Lethal equals Weeks & Aggravated is Months.

Custom House Rules

  • Extra cost of 5th DoT: The 5th DoT & upward now costs double or triple DoTs (5=2 DoTs, 6=2 DoTs, 8=*3 etc.)
    Rationale: A ?? Between rising XP & flat XP. Everything is harder and more time-consuming to progress through at higher levels.
  • Willpower Regains: There are many ways to regain WP, Short-term Aspirations return 1 WP while resolving Long-term Aspirations return to full. Vice returns 1 WP while Virtues return ? Also, Natures, Deneanors, Passions, Touchstones all return 1 Willpower when they’re involved in the Story properly.
  • No merit ever applies to rolls to activate or use Supernatural powers unless the merit explicitly states that it does so. Professional Training does not improve discipline use, Good Time Management will not help during ritual casting, etc.
  • Style Merits: They cost more than basic Merits. Pay XP=Level of DoTs (1 XP for 1st, 2 for 2nd).
    Rationale: Hopefully makes it rarer and stops everyone from having them.
  • Skill Styles: As well as Fighting Styles there are certain Skill Styles Merits available that grants very specialised abilities within a Skill. Such as
    Computers Style – Modern Technology
    Drive Style – High Performance
    Drive Style – Pilot Aircraft
    Occult Style – Alchemy
    [[Skill Style: Computers – Modern Technology]]
    [[Skill Style: Drive – Pilot Aircraft]]
    [[Skill Style: Drive – Ocean Sailing]]
    [[Skill Style: Occult – Alchemy]]
    [[Skill Style: Occult – Fortune Telling]]
    [[Skill Style: Investigation – Forensics]]
    [[Skill Style: Athletics – Free Running]]
  • Skill Stacking: A Speciality can be stacked to a max equal to Intellect. Custom rule, similar to Mirrors 19.
  • XP Beats: The Ratio have increased so that 10 Beats = 1 XP, not 5 Beats.
    Rationale: Easier to see as a decimal and more things award Beats in-game.


  • Reagents: Spells now require at least a base ingredient or “Catalyst” to cast. Often, other Reagents as well as further components may be needed to grant bonuses to make a spell properly achievable.
    Rationale: This is due to the slow degradation of Magic over the centuries. Reasons for this decline in the ability to cast spells is unknown but Mages may have their own thoughts and theories on this._
  • Archmasters: They are much rarer & harder to achieve, needs 8 not 6 DoTs.
    Rationale: Archmasters should be special and rare, with real effort required to reach those dizzy heights.
  • GrandMasters: They now exist at 6 DoTs, replacing & moving ArchMasters up to 8.
    Rationale: This replaces the RAW Archmasters basically.
  • 3 Integrity “Health” Trackers: MIND & SOUL Health Trackers added and replace Integrity. BODY is slightly higher.
    Rationale: Having a Sanity Stat seemed crucial but also separating it from the Soulful/Social guilt, wisdom or shame. 3 Trackers seem perfect!
  • Hidden Traits: These include Karma, Reaction & Rank.
  • Pushing it: This is going “above & beyond” or reaching to those final, last drops of conviction or reserve to make a desperate last ditch effort. To do this requires the agreement of the StoryTeller and to spend 1 point of Willpower to make the effort. Then took some dice.
  • “Holding Back”: When making their attacks and cap the amount of damage they deal at a specified amount (declared in advance of rolling the attack). Characters who want to deal less damage than a weapon’s base damage bonus take its base damage bonus as a penalty on their attack roll. (For example, wanting to deal 1 damage with a 3L longsword imposes -3 on the attack roll.) 1 willpower needs to be spent to activate this at the start of a Turn.
  • Armor converts to Bashing Damage: Wearing Bulletproof Armor converts a Firearms Lethal Damage to Bashing up to max of ?
  • Damage: If any (single source of) Damage is greater than Opponent’s Stamina then a Stun Check (Sta+Res) is made Ref: Armor Reloaded 157)
  • Bashing can deal Lethal: Blunt Weaponry will normally deal Bashing Damage but if a hot deals Damage greater than the Opponent’s Stamina then any extra above that is dealt as Lethal Damage.
  • Hard Staking: Staking a Vampire (or anyone who’s heart you may want to apply a stake) is now an extended action with a dice pool of str + Weapon + Equipment. The vampire’s Defense is applied if it is not asleep and completely immobilised. Successes required equal the vampire’s Health DoTs. Armory Reloaded 163.
  • Vampire Feeding: Kindred can drain Vitae equal to Stamina (Precense?) Per Turn.
  • Vampire Healing: Also healing while feeding, feeding heals 1 lethal or two bashing per vitae consumed as if they spent it to heal reflexively at the moment of feeding. They may still spend the vitae consumed to heal if needed obviously.
  • Vampire Damage: Most Lethal Damage is only Bashing Damage to Kindred. Firearms and sharp weapons unless greater than Stamina then it remains Lethal but half damage only.
  • Vampire Healing Times:+ Bashing is 1 point per hour, Lethal is 1 point per day and aggravated is 1 point per week?
  • Dead flesh: Vamps only suffer wound penalties against sunlight & fire (aggravated damage only?)
  • Accidental Embrace: In the case of a situation arising where a Kindred is exchanging vitae with a mortal drained to the point of death… A single die Chance roll will be made. If the roll result is a Dramatic Failure, a 1, the victim turns into a vampire on the next moonrise.
  • Flame touches, quality a-f & 2 mods, catapult construction, sticks&stones, tools are more basic and common, implants are in experimental stage right now with max limited to mind or ?? -1 soul each implant?, knowledge implants, goggles and reflexes ??,ammo types, .0 .00 Sizes,
  • The Rule of 1: 1’s do not cancel Successes. However, if you roll more 1’s than Successes, you suffer a Complication. If you succeeded, then your success comes with some unforeseen consequence that makes life a little more difficult. If you rolled no successes and at least a single 1, your failure also comes with a Complication… which means it’s a botch.
  • The Rule of 10: 10’s always explode: you get to keep the 10 as a success and roll another die. If it also comes up a 10, you get to keep it and roll another die… and so on. 1’s still count for complications on these dice!

Remember your dreams and fight for them. You must know what you want from life. There is just one thing that makes your dream become impossible: the fear of failure. Paulo Coelho

Reality exists in the human mind, and nowhere else.”
― George Orwell, 1984

Real things in the darkness seem no realer than dreams.”
― Murasaki Shikibu, The Tale of Genji

Know your enemy and know yourself and you can fight a hundred battles without disaster. Sun Tzu

Assassins take no pride in fighting fairly. We take pride in winning.”
― Robin Hobb, Fool’s Quest

I mulled over what he had told me as I savored the Scotch. Not bad, really — like a beer that’s been in a brawl.”
― David Justice

Scion & Sorcerer add more for special forces merit, Detail Religious Faithful Devotion for day & week, True Faith for both, Miracles & Divine Magic, Health Recovery, Illuminati=Refiled, war in heaven of Greek gods vs. titans.. with free will =god and uncaring for man and devil loving man, the Fall, goo etc.

These are a summary of our own custom rules that are used as is the House Lore, largely NWOD with some Classic and Blood & Smoke thrown in. An example list of References and books used is here. Let me know if you see any problems

  • Trainers cannot teach a Trait they have equal to or higher. They can only train people to lower than them i.e. equal-1. Trainers earn 1 XP per dot taught.
  • We’re only taking and using some from the “Chronicles of Darkness” and what we’re using and what we’re not is detailed in our CofD Rules Update. Types of Actions.
  • Defence: Use average of Dex or Wit rather than the lowest.
  • Sanctity of Experience: rather than Sanctity of Merits : This is because the idea extends beyond Merits and includes almost everything a Character may gain, I.e. Equipment, Attributes and Abilities etc. If you spend Experience on it, it’s likely a more difficult and plot-driven path to being lost than just gaining it in a Story with no Experience spent on it.
    Rationale:Okay, Players hate to lose things they’ve paid for with costly precious XP and we all want to encourage players not to fear buying merits only used in part of the game but let’s not “dumb things down” or “cotton wool” players entirely. I think there needs to be a real extra threat of loss throughout the Story and things should hurt. A Character should not always suffer injury physically or pay for consequences in a physical way so this is another alternative, another threat of loss. Also, I hope XP will be fluid enough that you can earn things back relatively easily.
  • Learning Limits: A Character may only spend XP to learn a Maximum of Traits = Intellect in any given downtime.
    Rationale:Players should save up sometimes. Intellect needs a little raising of it’s importance
  • Smartphones are linked to a Characters’ Resources Merit: Due to costly Monthly charges etc. not everyone will have quality access to Google and networking on the run and need mid Resources for such as item or perhaps a Speciality in Larceny.
  • Tutoring: To advance through most abilities a Tutor usually needs to be found and if they have the Teach or Tutor Academics Skill Speciality, then the better they are in the Skill they’re passing on the more the student benefits.
  • We have slightly different definitions for our in-house categories of Units of Time we use to mark the varying passing of Time in-game.
  • Roundin’ Down – Always, always ROUND-DOWN your DOT in anything and everything.. this just makes things a little rougher, tougher and darker.
    Rationale:This is the World of Darkness… It’s a dark, dangerous & unfair world.
  • 1st DOT is NEVER FREE – Again, things are just that little bit tougher in this World.. Those first DOTs of each Attribute need to be bought as well. Rationale: This world really is dark and gritty with many more people being average and less exceptional. Zero Dots mean disabled or a liability really with no expertise or capability at all.
    Rationale:Again, the world is harsh & unfair and I don’t want to completely take it for granted there’s no 0 point Attributed Disabled. I want there to be the choice and for players to actively, consciously put in that 1st DoT. Extra DoTs have been given to make up for it a little.
  • 4th DOT costs Double – The 4th DOTs (just like the 5th) costs double DOTs. This also applies to anything and everything. Rationale: Again, exceptional people should be very rare and it should take much time and effort to achieve those states of greatness, thus it should feel more rewarding when it happens. Mundane average really, truly is 2 DOTs. Note: The sixth & seventh DoT costs 3 DoTs each, eighth & ninth DoT costs 4 DoTs each… and so on.
    Rationale:When we start getting to these final, best in the whole world Traits and then on to the truly fantastic.. it really should be tougher, take longer, cost more effort. Again, I hope the XP awards will be enough to balance this though it should be very tough & require saving and effort to get these.
  • Chance Die: If a Characters’ Dice Pool ever drops below 1 Die, increase the “Target Number” depending on the lack of Die. So 0 Dice = TN 9, -1 = TN 10. These are still able to Roll Again on 10’s so a -2 Dice = Roll TN 10 and then a TN of 9 etc.
  • 5 is Mundane, 10 is Godly: When we first start we tend to be all dealing within the 1-5 Range but as things develop, enemies and situations may occur where things exceed that. 6 is really the limits of a mortal, it’s best in the world really, though perhaps there’s a hidden .1 percent of the population who exceeds even that.
  • Almost, Kinda & Criticals:
  • Rule of 1 / “Complications on 1” – 1’s rolled do not cancel successes rolled.. But, if more 1’s than Successes are rolled then the action suffers a complication.. Or, every 0 cancels a 1, the number of 1’s left over describe a complication (not a fail).
  • Automatic Competent Actions: The GM may allow automatic successes on regular actions if a Character is Competent in the relevant Skill (Skill of 3 or more).
  • “Botch / Dramatic Failure” If you roll more 1’s than your Attribute+ Skill, or on a “Chance Die” i.e. when you are rolling one Dice only, a 1 with no sucess causes a significant dramatic failure called a Botch or Fumble. These are bad!
  • Rule of 10 / “Exploding Die” – 10’s rolled always explodes, meaning it can be rolled again and counted again as another die.. If a 10 is again rolled then again it counts and explodes.. going on until it doesn’t roll a 10.
  • Number of Successes: Rolling your Dice Pool, the number of Successes translates as –
    1 Barely a Success but you just managed it.
    2 Normal Success
    3 Good Success
    4 Exceptional Success
    5 Fantastic Success
  • Willpower: You may spend 1 point of Willpower to get a +3 to your Dice Pool or a +2 to Resistance. You can regain WP back to max. by using your Assets or at full night of rest or 1 point per day of Downtime.
  • Maximum Attributes: The usual maximum for most Mortals is 5-6 and for Others it’s 10. Remember: 4 DoTs & 5 DoTs cost two DoTs each. 6 DoTs & 7 DoTs cost three each and 8 DoTs & 9 DoTs cost 4 DoTs each. Thus it’s harder and harder to raise your Attributes. The same roughly applies for Abilities though is a little more flexible.
  • Check Rolls: A Character may wish to “know what they know” for a particular subject or activity. Simply, Roll Int + Skill Dice and each success allows the StoryTeller to give you a helpful clue, idea or suggestion on what might be known by the Character in that situation.
    eg. You
  • Routine Actions: After long practice, you’ve become handily proficient with a certain task. When a roll has the Routine quality, each die succeeds on a 6+ rather than an 8+.
    You are still able to Fumble your action by rolling lone 1’s (those without 10’s to mitigate them) greater than Attribute+ Skill.

Anything that would give you the Rote or Advanced qualities on an roll instead gives you the Routine quality.

  • Sleep: Most Mortals can go a full day (24 hours) with no rest or sleep and after that a Roll Check is needed each day to lessen the growing penalties found on the Days Awake Table.
  • Hunger:* Characters should eat and drink to keep themselves going. A Character can be thought of as to do such things during Downtime and find a quiet moment to fulfill such needs but if not stated..
  • Equipment Bonus: These are ineffective if they are greater than the relevant Skill being used. Expand.g. a +4 Car used by a Driver with Drive (3) only gets an actual effective +3 Bonus.
    A Doctor with Medicine (4) is using a +2 medikit, they get the full use of that Bonus but moving to a top state of the art + 5 Medical Lab can only make use of the +4 and the extra 1 is lost.

This is also relevant for Weapons. A skill needs to be equal or more than the Weapon Bonus to take full advantage and be effective using the weapon.

  • Equipment Costs: You may buy an item that is cheaper or more expensive depending on Quality, Legality and whether it is customised or not.
    • Cheap, used or shoddy items: 1 DoT cheaper than the standard cost displayed.
    • Expensive, Custom-Made or Illegal items: Cost 1 DoT more than the standard, advertised cost.
    • Haggling. Threatening, Blackmail, Offering a Favour etc: These are all possible ways to lower the Cost.
    • For Example: You want a car which is normally 3 DoTs of Resources. If you settle for a well used car you can get it for 2 DoTs. If you’re after the luxury all-inclusive then that’s 4 DoTs.
      For example, in the UK you want. Wel made, exquisite hand gun. Normally they cost 2 DoTs but a well made one costs 3 but in the UK it’s illegal so costs 4 DoTs to acquire.
  • Encumbrance: This is a simple way to track how much weight you are carrying and if it penalises your movement or actions when heavily loaded.
  • Experience Points awarded: Players may be awarded XP both during Play as well as at the end of a Session.
  • Sanctity of Merits: This means that those Merits you have spent XP on should not be arbitrarily lost but instead should be somewhat protected by the GM during play as compared to any Merits you may have accrued during play but haven’t spent XP on. Those without XP may be lost easily and can be considered you haven’t invested the time or care to keep them.
  • Skill Usage Advancement: When a Skill is tried, place a Line for failure, a Cross for a success alongside that Skill. Once the total reaches Skill Level * 5 you can Roll a Skill Advancement Check and if it succeeds you can add a DOT for “free” with no XP cost. These ticks are only awarded for valid Skill usage and not constant “try it everywhere, anyhow”…
  • Vague Stats: At times, the GM may wish to keep some of your Current Statistics vague and secret, better to increase tension and caution during Gameplay. Stats such as Current Health (BODY; MIND; SOUL), Encumbrance, Karma, Reputation etc are most likely to become vague unless estimated by someone with relevant skills such as Psychology or Medicine, Athletics, Occult or Unseen Senses.
  • Athletics & Crafts: Skills have been added or changed some to try and weight them differently. Acrobatic skill, for example to try and make Athletics less of a must for everyone. Acrobatic Specialities may include free-running, tumbling, balance and evasion. Construction has been added to compliment and split from Crafts.
  • Penalty for No Skill: If you try and perform an Action you are Unskilled in or don’t have a required Speciality then you receive a Penalty of at least -2 for any of the 3 Skill Categories.
  • Cross Skill Knowledge: It is possible the GM may add a relevant Other Skill to the Dice Pool if it is deemed very relevant to the Action. This value is halved and rounded down so at least a Skill of 2 is required to grant a +1 Bonus, a Skill of 3 also only grants +1 Bonus and a Skill of 4 grants a +2 Bonus etc. Only one extra Skill is ever possible (though you may also add relevant Specialities).
  • “Skill Stacking”: Any number of (Specialities < Intellect) that are relevant to the action may be used for the Dice Pool.
  • Related Specialities: A Character may add a number of related Skill Specialities <int>d only need 2 DoTs).

The Tutor needs to feed a DoT of their blood to kick off the Discipline in their student.

House Rules

ANother World of Darkness - Alpha Network Greyman Greyman