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Shattered Haven (DnD Campaign Setting)/Rules

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Game Rules of Shattered Haven (D&D 3.5) Edit

As a grim and dark setting, Shattered Haven uses a number of rules that take away the more cinematic feel of most Dungeons and Dragons games.

  • Shattered Haven uses the E6 system.
  • Shattered Haven uses the Grim-N-Gritty system with the following changes:
  1. Remove rolling for defense. AC equals 11+Defense, since rolling defense slows the game down incredibly and adds too much randomness into the system.
  • Except in special instances under DM agreement, full casters and manifesters are gone from the system for PCs.
    • This includes clerics, wizards, bards, sorcerers, psions, wilders, and the like.
    • Some manifesters such as the lurk (Complete Psionic) or the psychic warrior can be used, as can rangers, paladins. However, any of these more magical classes or specific spells from them can be vetoed by the DM.
    • I've been asked a few times, so let me clarify--martial adepts are fine, though there may be some small changes to specific abilities or feats.
      • For example, Burning Blade, Crusader's Strike and similar abilities do not add IL (and deal and heal +2 damage respectively), while Martial Spirit only heals a single point of damage.
  • Races are chosen from the simplified races variant.
  • Characters are created using standard 32 point buy.
  • Characters gain a free feat at levels 2, 4, and 5 (in addition to the regular ones at levels 1, 3, and 6).
  • Characters can choose up to two traits.
  • Healing Surges and Taking Stock is in use.
  • Masterwork weapons come in many shapes and forms.
  • Grace Points are used.

Alignment Edit

Rather than the classic alignment system that D&D uses, Shattered Haven has a purity system. Most people are pragmatic, and do what they need to in order to survive, but there are a few who stand out amongst the rest, who take into consideration the people around them when weighing their own actions. These people are often taken advantage of, trod upon until they resort to nefarious means to further themselves. Yet even fewer hold onto their will to continue upon a righteous path, and these are the pure of heart.

Note that this has no connection with the classic D&D alignment system, where all that matters is the intention and the deed with no thought for the consequences. Instead, characters who are pure feel a sense of compassion for fellow sentient beings and a basic respect for laws that are there to protect people in general. They treat people as they expect to be treated, and respect others' boundaries just as they would want their own to be respected. However, some characters may be driven to acts that others would not think of, embittered by circumstances beyond their control or of their own doing, and may reject their old convictions to take on a more selfish and callous approach to their existence, becoming less pure. These are the characters with lower Purity scores, and this score is fluid, changing with time depending on the actions and intentions of characters.

Every character has a Purity score, starting characters beginning with 8-10 (player's choice according to how they see their character) and throughout the game shifting around due to their actions. DMs may tell the player when an act may lead to a change in a character's Purity score, though this is not a necessity. At times a DM may introduce a moral event horizon where a character may be tempted to do something evil or wrong despite their best intentions. In this case, characters must roll a d20, and if they are able to roll lower than their Purity score they resist temptation, otherwise they partake in whatever evil deed lies before them.

Characters who partake in evil may become depraved and misshapen, while good characters are rewarded for their struggle against their baser instincts, as per the table below. DMs should remember that it is easy to fall from a high Purity score, and lower Purity requires far worse acts to descend further. Furthermore, heinous acts at high Purity scores can reduce the character by more than one rank at a time. The majority of "decent" people have around a purity score of 9, while characters who take greatly evil actions such as torturing a helpless victim for the greater good or brutally murdering someone when they could have been let off as an example may drop as low as a seven. However, to drop lower often requires one to perform heinous acts simply for the sake of the acts and one's pleasure or benefit (often ones from the BoVD). Once one begins upon this path, it is incredibly hard to stop, and a character who falls as low as three has very little chance of not slipping further just with the number of acts he commits.

Purity Score Consequence
10-7 No effect.
6 The character gains a random mild physical symptom.
5 The character gains a random mild mental symptom.
4 The character gains the next moderate physical symptom on the chart.
3 The character gains the next moderate mental symptom on the chart.
The character gains a bonus feat as though they had reached moderate taint.
2 The character gains the next severe physical symptom on the chart.
1 The character gains the next severe mental symptom on the chart.
The character gains a bonus feat as though they had reached severe taint.
0 The character loses the last vestige of morality they posses and becomes an NPC under DM control.

Physical and mental symptoms can be found in Heroes of Horror beginning on page 63.

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