5th Edition House Rules

New Bonuses

Martial(Fighter, Barbarian) Attack Boost: +1/level
Hybrid(Paladin, Ranger, Monk, Rogue) Attack Boost: +1/2 levels
Partial(Bard, Cleric, Druid, Warlock) Attack Boost: +1/3 levels
Arcane(Wizard, Sorcerer) Attack Boost: None

New Martial Maneuvers

For grapple-specific attacks/maneuvers that require a contested grapple roll, apply the maneuver's cost/penalty to the grapple roll.

Stances can be activated, abandoned or changed only on your turn, and only once per turn.

Aegis Stance

The instant you enter an Aegis stance, you lose all AC bonuses from your shield and armor, gaining +5 temporary HP for every lost point of AC from armor, and +10 temporary HP for every lost point of AC from your shield. In addition, you're immune to knockdowns and automatically succeed at all Str and Con saves. Damage is first applied to your "shield HP," and then to your "armor HP." Should either pool drop to zero, the equipment providing the bonus is damaged and will no longer provide an AC or HP bonus until repaired.


This attack allows you to reach and engage an enemy without provoking attacks of opportunity. For every attack of opportunity ignored, your attack suffers a -2 penalty. Cost: Varies.


If an enemy attack misses you, you can instantly make a counter attack, which can be combined with any maneuvers you know, though the cost of the maneuver will be applied on your next turn. Cost: -2 attack bonus, subtracted on your next turn AND from any counters in between then and the next turn.

Disarming Attack

Make an attack that deals no damage, but, if it hits, forces your opponent to make a Strength save against a DC of your attack roll or have a weapon(or shield) flung from his hands. Natural weapons cannot be disarmed, and if the weapon is two-handed, the wielder gets a +4 on his save. Cost: -2 attack bonus.

Distracting Attack

If this attack lands, it deals half damage. Whether the attack lands or not, the target must make a Wisdom save against a DC of your attack roll. If he fails, he is considered flatfooted against the next attack on him, removing his dexterity bonus to AC, making him vulnerable to backstabs and making him automatically fail any Dexterity saves. Cost: -2 attack bonus.


During any attack against you, you may increase your AC by up to your total attack bonus. However, this will be subtracted from your AC on your next turn, and any actions or maneuvers you take until your next turn will also suffer from the penalty. Cost: Varies, applied to next turn.

Guardian Stance

When Guardian Stance is activated, choose one or more allies. If they're near you when they're attacked or targeted by a spell/projectile, you automatically interpose yourself between them and the attack. Your AC and saves are penalized by -4 when you intercept an attack in this way, but even if it has an area of effect, the spell or attack will never affect the defended ally.


This maneuver can be made against grappled enemies, it can be made in the same action as grappling them. To use a headlock, make a contested grapple roll against your opponent. If the roll succeeds, they're silenced and can neither talk nor cast spells with vocal components. Every turn you maintain the headlock past the first, they lose temporary points of Constitution equal to your strength bonus. When their Constitution temporarily reaches 0, they're unconscious. Cost: -3 attack bonus.

Hummingbird Stance

The Hummingbird stance doubles your AC bonus from Dexterity. In addition, you automatically pass any Dex saves. However, if you should be hit, the stance is instantly cancelled and you're knocked prone.


If this attack strikes an opponent, they must make a Strength or Constitution save vs a DC equal to your attack roll. If they succeed in the save, they're shoved backwards but remain on their feet. If they fail their save, they're knocked prone and suffer all associated penalties. Cost: -4 attack bonus.

Meat Shield

If you currently have an enemy grappled and are successfully hit by an attack or spell, you may make a contested grapple check to instead block the attack with your grappled opponent. Against area-of-effect spells, this is counted as successfully making your save(i.e. you may still suffer half damage). Your opponent automatically fails any dexterity saves and take full damage from any attacks they're used to block. Dead opponents don't work as shields. Cost: -2 attack bonus.

Power Attack

Exchange attack bonus for a damage bonus on a 1:1 basis for this attack. Cost: Varies.

Shield Bash

Strike with your weapon and follow up with a bash from your shield, roll both attacks separately and against the same target. Bucklers or small shields deal 1d6 damage, normal shields and tower shields deal 1d8 damage. Shields that are spiked or otherwise more offensively inclined(on fire, etc.) may receive damage bonuses. Your shield provides no AC bonus until your next turn and cannot be used for further shield bashes until then. Cost: -2 attack bonus.


This attack can only be made against grappled enemies, it can be made in the same action as grappling them. If you succeed at a contested grapple roll, you slam your enemy into the ground for 2d8+strength bonus damage, knocking them prone and ending your grapple. Cost: -2 attack bonus.

Sweeping Strike

This attack can only be made with a two-handed weapon. Make an attack against every opponent within range of your weapon. Cost: -6 attack bonus.


This attack can only be made against/with grappled enemies. With this attack, you hurl a grappled enemy at his friends as a thrown weapon, ending the grapple. Small enemies do 2d4 damage, medium-sized enemies do 2d6 damage, large enemies do 2d8 damage and huge enemies do 2d10 damage. The thrown enemy always ends up prone. This attack gains damage bonuses from strength. The thrown victim suffers the same damage as the target(s). Enemies can also be thrown off cliffs/into obstacles/into hazards if there are no other enemies to target. Cost: -2 attack bonus.

New Archetypes

Fighter Archetype: Strategist

Prerequisites: Access to highly disciplined, mindless or fanatical minions(golems, the undead, elite soldiers, cult members, etc.)

Starting at 3rd level, the Strategist gains access to three Minions. This is increased to five at 7th level, seven at 13th level and nine at 17th level. Outside of combat, each minion provides a +1 to perception checks or any strength-based checks and otherwise serves roughly the same function as a 10-foot-pole or a fist-sized stone(can be used to sacrificially set off traps, probe dangerous substances, be thrown into holes to gauge their depth, etc.) though this may exhaust them in much the same way as using them for special Strategist abilities. Minions aren't destroyed by area-of-effect attacks and cannot be individually targeted.

Minions may also be exhausted through common-sense scenarios, for instance if they're engaging an enemy on a narrow ledge above a bottomless chasm and something causes the ledge to collapse, toppling them into the abyss.

When reduced to 0 or less hit points, minions will stabilize the Strategist as best as they are able(bind wounds, put out fire, wash off acid) and defend him. Any subsequent attacks or spells targeted at the Strategist each exhaust one minion and do no damage, until all minions are exhausted, at which point the Strategist is treated as a normal character at 0-or-less HP.

For every non-exhausted minion the Strategist has, he gains another attack-of-opportunity per round.

Exhausted minions are refreshed at the rate of one per short rest and all during a long rest.

The Strategist gains access to two of the following abilities at 3rd level, and another every two levels beyond that(three abilities at 5th level, four at 7th, etc.). Unless otherwise stated, the Strategist can only use one of these abilities per turn, and only on his own turn, though they do not consume his other actions(spellcasting, attacking, movement, etc.). A Minion can only be committed to one action per round.

Alchemical Sacrifice

The Strategist commits one of his minions to a suicide attack, exhausting that minion. The minion charges the enemy ranks with a potent alchemical mixture that detonates for 4d6 Acid, Fire or Poison damage, affecting up to three enemies in close proximity.

Break It Down!

The Strategist commits one or more minions to breaking down a wall, door or other barrier separating him from the enemy. Wooden doors and walls are automatically breached, providing a gap wide enough for one medium-sized character or creature to enter through. Stone walls take a round to breach, and require two minions. Magically enhanced or enchanted defenses, or large fortifications, may take more. If the minions breach a barrier separating them from enemies or something dangerous(poisonous gas, boiling oil, poisonous asps, etc.) they are exhausted.

Field Medicine

The Strategist exhausts one or more minions in the process of dressing wounds and staunching bleeding. For each minion exhausted, the target recovers five hit points. This is the only ability that the Strategist can use while at 0HP or below.

Force Multiplier

The Strategist can order a minion to use a magical item, scroll or similar without consuming the Strategist's turn. This exhausts the minion. Magical "ammunition"(arrows, bolt, sling stones, etc.) or similar that require an attack roll cannot be used by minions.


The Strategist commits one or more minions to assisting in a grapple attempt made by either him or one of his allies. For each minion committed, the grappler gains a +2 to his grapple rolls. Minions remain committed until the grapple is broken or ended, if the Strategist recalls one or more of his minions before the grapple is broken or ended, a new check must immediately be made without the assistance of the minions in order to maintain the grapple. If the grapple fails or is broken, one of the minions committed is exhausted.

Pincer Attack

The Strategist commits two or more minions to an attack on an enemy, distracting him and pinning him in place. This gives anyone attacking the enemy Advantage on their attack, the enemy receives a -10 penalty to his Dexterity saves until his next turn and the enemy is unable to move(for instance to leave a harmful area-of-effect spell). Every time it's the enemy's turn in the initiative order again, he exhausts one Minion. When only one Minion remains in the Pincer Attack, or the Strategist calls off his Minions, the effects of Pincer Attack end.

Shield Wall

The Strategist commits one or more minions to his own defense or to the defense of an ally. Each minion committed to defense in such a fashion improves AC, Dexterity saves, Strength saves and Constitution saves by 1. Should an attack that causes damage nonetheless hit, the Strategist may exhaust a minion on the defense in order to halve the damage effect.

Siege Operation

The Strategist commits three or more minions to operating a piece of siege machinery(ballista, catapult, trebuchet, etc.) separate from him. The first turn is spent setting up the siege machinery, after which it attacks at its full rate of fire as often as possible unless the Strategist orders his minions to hold their attacks. The minions attack with the Strategist's attack bonus. If attacked on their own, they defend themselves with the Strategist's AC and saves, and have 8 HP per minion committed to the siege device. If the number of minions operating the siege machine falls to less than three, they cease operating the siege machine and rejoin the Strategist.

This ability does not give the Strategist a free piece of siege equipment, he still needs to build, buy or steal one.

Siege Machine Stats

Ballista: Fires every round, 3d6 piercing damage per shot.
Catapult: Fires every second round, 6d6 crushing damage per boulder.
Trebuchet: Fires every third round, 9d6 crushing or fire damage per projectile.

Speed Loader

The Strategist commits a minion to assist himself or an ally in loading and firing a ranged weapon which has a fire rate of worse than once per round or the Loading attribute. While assisted by the Minion, the weapon either attacks at a rate of once per round, if it was previously less, or loses the "Loading" attribute, if it had it, allowing the user to attack at his full rate.

Suppressing Fire

The Strategist orders one or more minions to rain projectiles(arrows, sling stones, rocks, shurikens, whatever's appropriate) on a nearby enemy, forcing a Will save at a TN equal to the Strategist's Charisma. which the enemy can choose to fail. If the enemy succeeds at the save, he suffers 1d4 damage per minion committed to the Arrow Rain and is otherwise unaffected. If the enemy fails at the save, he suffers no damage, but must dive for the nearest cover and remain there until his next turn. If no cover is available, he will instead throw himself prone.

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