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World of Shantar D&D 5e House Rules

Version 2.0.1


Skill checks are modified only slightly from the core rules of the Players Handbook. I allow the ability to gain tool proficiencies in downtime, and allow for mastery.

Clarifications on Tool Use and Proficiency

Tool proficiency conveys a lot of information regarding your realm of knowledge and capability to discover information in game. Masons' tools help you locate altered stonework and secret doors. Thieves' Tools may help you know where to look for secret caches. Brewers' Supplies and Weavers Tools can give you a big boost for gathering information and gossip in town. Beyond the use of the knowledge of tools, what happens when you are proficient with Thieves' Tools but lack the tool set? Here are the rules for improvised and missing tools.

  1. You have the required tools and you're proficient with them: roll ability check with your proficiency bonus.
  2. You have the required tools and you're not proficient with them: roll ability check with disadvantage if the task does not require proficiency. Otherwise no capability (no roll).
  3. You have improvised tools, and your proficient: roll skill check with proficiency bonus and disadvantage.
  4. You don't have the required tools: no capability (no roll).

Trained Skill Checks

Some skill checks are considered to be challenging enough that unless you have specific proficiency or training, they would be very difficult to achieve. When a skill check is asked for that is "trained", if your character does not have proficiency in the skill, or proficiency with the tool kit if one is required, then you need to roll that skill with Disadvantage.

Gaining Proficiency with a Tool Kit after Character Creation

You can work towards proficiency with a Tool Kit during your downtime. After 250 days of downtime learning a tool proficiency, or 90 days training as an apprentice, you can roll a Charisma check DC 15. A success means you have gained proficiency. A failure means that you have failed to become proficient, but may re-roll the check after another 30 days (or a week if working as in an apprenticeship).

Master Artisans

Each time when you have succeeded three times in a ability check with a Tool Kit you are proficient in with a natural 20 success, you can make a Charisma check DC 20 to become a Master Artisan. A master artisan doubles their proficiency bonus to skill checks related to that toolkit (if not already doubled), and can make superior quality items using the toolkit. If you are not proficient with that tool kit, you instead gain proficiency with that toolkit and add your proficiency bonus to ability checks related to that item. In your downtime you can train towards mastery. Each 250 days of hard work towards mastery counts as a critical success towards mastery.

New and Modified Tools

Advanced Climbers' Kit (Uses Proficiency of Climbers Kit)

Kit contains all the items within a normal climber's kit along with a belaying pulley, 10 carabiners, an ascending rig, and a figure eight descender. In addition to the standard benefits of a climber's kit, the advanced kit enables you to ascend climb with advantage and allows you to descend double your normal movement rate by repelling. Cost: 20 gp

Herbalism Kit (Alteration/Addition)

Herbalism kits now allow you to find and gather ingredients/herbs, and provides the necessary equipment to properly preserve herbal ingredients. You can now make a number of poultices or herbal concoctions as found in the expanded rules.

Alchemists Kit (Alteration/Addition)

Alchemists kits now allow you to properly make many potions, oils, etc. as found in the expanded rules.