Campaign Rules

This is a D&D 3.5 campaign, so the basic rules from that apply. Players are free to utilize the core rulebooks at will. Anything outside of those books (the PHB, DMG, MM) must be approved by the DM before use.

Combat will be based off the basic 3.5 rules, but will be more streamlined for an online-only game.

How To Play

This campaign is played by editing the adventure log (the actual log, not in the comments). The DM will provide a boxed off area to put the meta information in (describing both what the player wants to do and (optionally) what the character actually says). It will look something like this:

DM: You are in a dark and dreary dungeon. You are likely to be eaten by a grue.

Player: My character says, “I attack the darkness!” He then casts Magic Missile into the area ahead.

The players are also encouraged to help with world-building and updating the wiki pages. The general rule is that the further away (distance, time, etc.) the thing is, the more liberty the players have in creating the world. For example, fleshing out events which happened a thousand years ago is more likely to be approved by the DM than events in the recent past which affect the story.

Players are strongly encouraged to put forth some effort in describing their role-playing through descriptive text. You may not always have time for this, and that’s fine. But the goal is for you to really flesh out your character’s personality. If you want your character to say something specific, be sure to write it out. Otherwise, the DM will run with the general gist and fill in the gaps. You may also provide info on what your character is thinking.

Playing Evil

Remember that although we are playing an evil-aligned campaign, playing an evil character does not mean your character is always out kicking puppies, slaying children, and stealing things. Evil-aligned characters often have principles (especially if lawfully aligned). They also usually hide their evil natures when around other people—otherwise they’d end up dead or in prison.

Many evil characters feel that they are doing what is “right”, but are using an “evil” means of accomplishing it. Although there may be times for unquestionable evil actions, it will be difficult to handle a “Mr. Hyde” type of character who is constantly out of control.

Rules for Evil Characters

The following rules must be adhered to in regards to all player characters:

1) The party must be cohesive. This means that although your character is evil, he needs to not have the tendency to back-stab or betray the party. If the characters/players start turning on each other, the game will quickly break down (unless there are specific reasons/circumstances approved in advance). Therefore, each character needs to have a strong attachment to the party. This attachment should be explained in the character’s backstory—not only through gameplay (i.e. they need a prior connection of some sort).

2) The character alignment must not be good. Neutral is acceptable as long as the character has reason to remain with the party. Remember to read up on alignment in the Player’s Handbook.

It can be very useful to examine the archetypes of various villains to find one that matches your desired play style. Here are some examples of valid characters:

  • A thieving rogue who desires to perfect his skills and become an assassin.
  • A calculating, evil cleric of Nerull.
  • A wizard or sorcerer who desires to increase his magical power regardless of the cost.
  • A jaded fighter who has no qualms about killing.
  • A charismatic bard or rogue who desires to rule.

Rolling Dice

As the DM, I’d prefer it if you would roll real dice whenever possible. But you are free to handle your dice rolling however you want. If I find that your character consistently has excellent rolls, I will punish you, so don’t fudge your rolls.

When rolling for combat, post your roll to-hit and the damage at the same time. If the to-hit roll was sufficient I’ll mark of the damage—that way we don’t have to wait around for a second post with the damage value.

There are a few types of rolls that the DM should roll instead of the party. These are usually because the player shouldn’t know how well their character is doing (the character doesn’t get immediate feedback either). Here are those skill check rolls:
  • Appraise
  • Hide
  • Move Silently

When you want one of these DM rolls, just indicate that your character wants to do one of those actions. The DM may also make other skill checks for you, as needed, such as Spot or Listen. But you are free to roll those whenever you specifically want to do that action.

Combat

During combat, the DM will usually ask for multiple rounds of actions at once. Since there are no miniatures we are working with, you’ll have to imagine the combat as best you can (assisted by the description text).

So for example, if asked for 3 rounds worth of actions, you might do something like this:
Player: First my character will drink a potion of mage armor. Then she’ll move into combat and attack with her dagger, attempting to flank.
Roll to hit: 24 (natural 20!); 5 damage from dagger (w/ crit) + 14 from sneak attack (if possible).
Roll to hit: 21; 4 damage from dagger + 11 sneak attack.

In the example above, the rogue would always roll sneak attack damage, and the DM would apply the damage when it applies.

Critical Hits

For this campaign, we’ll be using the following house-rule (which we used in our previous campaigns). If you roll a critical hit, always take the maximum base damage from the weapon. Then for x2 crit weapons, roll the dice once more to add the additional damage. For x3 crit weapons, you’ll roll twice; x4 crit = roll thrice; etc.

Note that the above is always just for the base damage of the weapon. The damage for any special abilities or magic enhancements are always applied after (and do not get multiplied).

Examples:
  • You crit with a shortsword. This weapon has a damage of 1d6 and crit of x2. So the damage would be 6 + 1d6.
  • You crit with a +1 flaming greatsword. The greatsword has a damage of 2d6 and a crit of x2. It also does +1 for being a magic weapon, plus 1d6 for the flame. So the total damage would be 12 (max base damage) + 2d6 (crit damage) + 1 (magic) + 1d6 (fire) = 13 + 3d6.
  • You crit with a longbow. This weapon has a damage of 1d8 and a crit of x3. So the damage would be 8 + 2d8.

Campaign Rules

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