New House Rule: Lingering Injuries

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New House Rule: Lingering Injuries

Postby Overload on Fri Jan 30, 2009 2:26 pm

After giving it more thought, I have decided to officially implement the Lingering Injuries house rules in to our game.

In 3e, there was no way to heal between battles without using expensive or slow magic. If you wanted to get back hitpoints you needed to sleep, which only restored 1 HP per level per day, which meant that you often had to rest for a week after a big battle before returning to a dungeon. While much more realistic, I found this to be too harsh and made "dungeon crawl" style adventures pretty slow moving.

In 4e they removed that entire concept and now allow players to fully heal up between encounters until they run out of their daily endurance, at which point they simply need to sleep for 6 hours to be ready to go again. While I feel this is much better than the 3e rules, I feel it's a step too far in that direction. With these rules there is no reason to ever return to town other than to buy and sell equipment, as long as you can find a place to rest for the night. Even heroes such as yourselves should be subject to the occasional major injury that requires more than sleeping on it!

These rules essentially give you a reason to head back to town. Occasionally players will suffer a lingering injury and the party will need to make the choice between seeking professional medical attention or risking it by continuing on in the dungeon despite a serious injury. I believe forcing the players to occasionally retreat from a dungeon and rest for a few days really helps give opportunity for plot development (a huge stronghold shouldn't be sieged in a couple days without ever leaving!) and I think you will find it will lead to a richer gameplay experience overall.

The Rules: Lingering Effects
The first time a character is reduced to 0 hitpoints after an extended rest, he suffers a Lingering Injury. The character rolls a saving throw. On success it is a light wound; on failure it is a moderate wound. If a character already has a Lingering Injury, then instead the severity of that injury is increased by 1 on success and 2 on failure. You never have more than one Lingering Injury at a time.

After an extended rest, if a character has a Lingering Injury, he has the choice of rolling an endurance check or allowing an ally to use a heal check. If the check meets a DC of [20+½lvl] then the injury's severity is decreased by 1. If it does not meet that but still meets a DC of [16+½lvl] then the injury's severity does not change. If it doesn't meet either of those, then the injury gets worse and its severity is increased by 1. A Heal Injury ritual (lvl 8) may be cast in place of this check.

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