Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Promise and Problems of Rituals (Part II)

In Part I, I examined some of the issues I saw with rituals in 4th Edition D&D.  Since then, Jonathan at The Core Mechanic came up with some interesting alternative rules that address many of the issues I spoke about.  It is definitely worth a read.

Nevertheless, I feel the need to present my own set of house rules on rituals.  I take a somewhat different direction than Jonathan, and I am curious to find out what people think about them.

Ritual Casting (Cleric and Wizard Class Feature)

You are able to master and perform rituals of your level or lower.  Unlike the Ritual Caster feat, you are not limited in the number of rituals you can master.  See PHB Chapter 10 for more information on how to perform rituals.

Ritual Caster (Heroic Tier Feat)

Prerequisite: Trained in Arcana or Religion

Benefit: You can master and perform four rituals of your level or lower.  You gain one ritual for free when the feat is first acquired.  The remaining three must be mastered normally (see Chapter 10).  Once you have mastered four rituals, you cannot master any more.  However, you can change which rituals you know through retraining.  When you retrain a ritual, it is removed from your ritual book and replaced with the new one.  See Chapter 10 for more information on how to perform rituals.  This feat can be taken multiple times.  Each time it is taken, you are able to master and perform four additional rituals.

Performing a Ritual (Modification to PHB Chapter 10)

Performing a ritual is very draining.  The number of rituals you can perform per day depends on your level:

At 1st - 10th level, you can perform two rituals per day. 

At 11th - 20th level, you can perform four rituals per day.

At 21st - 30th level, you can perform six rituals per day.

Each time you reach a milestone (see page 259), you regain the ability to perform one ritual if you have already expended that ability. 

After you take an extended rest, your ability to perform rituals is renewed and you start fresh with regard to the number of rituals you can perform per day.

Please note that there are no limits to the ability to assist with a ritual, or to the ability to utilize ritual scrolls.

Ritual Costs (Modification to PHB Chapter 10)

When using the rules above, it is recommended that both the purchase price and the component costs of rituals be cut in half.

3 comments:

Oz said...

So far I have run into a problem with my players wanting to do lots of rituals. I also keep certain rituals tightly controlled by guilds/temples.

Since I don't use milestones, that section wouldn't be relevant. If I were going to limit ritual casting it would probably be 1 + CON Bonus per day with a feat or talent (house rule) to allow more per day.

Oz said...

So far I have run into a problem with my players wanting to do lots of rituals.

Should read as have not run in to problems... sometimes my fingers go faster than my brain.

Rob said...

Welcome to the blog Oz. Thanks for the comments!

The limits I placed on the number of rituals that can be cast per day wasn't because my players try to perform too many rituals. Rather, it was because I dislike the fact that currently the primary limit to how many rituals you can cast is financial.

Placing another limiter on rituals allowed me to drop the price of rituals to make them more affordable. I am actually hoping this rule will increase the use of rituals in my game.

These rules are also intended to be a bit of a "quick fix". In other words, I didn't want to completely rewrite the ritual rules.

I definitely agree with you that certain rituals should remain under tight control of guilds and temples.

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