Here are my basic house rules:Can you elaborate on a few of the changes? I'm very curious. Thanks!
- Only books players use for options: PHB1-3, AV1-2 and the x-Power line of books. No magazines, or other supplements. Keeps options interesting but low and reduces huge power creep.
- I don't use treasure wishlists. Instead I randomly generate magic items for each parcel, and I 'drop' twice as many items, to make up for the randomness. Makes loot very fun and exciting, and the players get enough gold + junk items, to be able to buy enough to fill in mising slots, or save up for a juicy item they want.
- All monsters (excluding minions) have half hp. So they start at their bloodied value, and become bloodied at 1/4. Speeds up combats a lot.
- All monsters (excluding minions) do 2x dice damage and 1x flat damage. so a monster attacking for 2d8+7 is now 4d8+7. Balances out the half hp by making monsters hit a lot harder. This causes more 'spike' damage with big hits and huge crits, increasing the tension and making some enemies quite terrifying. Combined with the half hp this makes fights fast but intense.
Keeping options open but restricted has made the bloat of 4e easier to manage, and we can use the digital tools for the players, though I do have the physical books for looking up stuff at the table.
And speeding fights up takes fight closer to the quick and dangerous fights more common in things like pathfinder. Since this change the only time we've had a session with only combat was a big epic boss encounter with plenty of stuff going on. With the faster combat we've had more time for RP and exploration during each session.