Terrible GM house rule


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How about confirming against a flat AC of 10 (or 15)? This makes low level characters way more likely to fumble while at some point the chances are pretty low (1/400).


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I had a GM that loved fumbles. After explaining to him how bad it makes already behind martials, he gave in and made a few changes. One change was that only your first attack roll was eligible for a fumble which took some of the sting out. The second was adding in a confirming roll as many mentioned above. It was ok but most of us still didn't care for fumbles.

The demise of fumbles at our table came with the much touted Paizo fumble deck. This turd bucket gives out nice penalties like -2 to attack rolls until you crit again, or your weapon is broken until you can fix it. Yeap, about as refreshing as a recent fart. After those terrible experiences we simply go with a rolled 1 is an auto miss.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

So can some one correct me if I'm wrong here, it seems that people only care that critical fumbles only happens to players correct? It's not that they are opposed to them being in the game at all. Only that they affect players.

I say this because you can only fumble on a 1. That's what? a 5% chance on each roll?

Critical hits typically only happen on natural 20. That's 5% chance too right?

Except when it's not. Like in the case of a weapon with an increased Critical Hit range like a longsword 19-20 (10%) or a rapier 18-20 (15%). Then when you add in various feats to increase the crit range or to improve the chances of confirming a critical hit.

But you can ONLY fumble on a natural 1 on the die.

And for those of you saying that there's a greater chance of crit fumbling for the PC's because they roll more attacks, isn't that just as true (more so because of the increased crit ranges) for critical hits?

So the issue at hand here isn't that Critical fumbles are inherently unfair. The issue is that players wish to remove any chance of harm to their PC's (no matter how small). Because that fumble can just as easily be a critical hit. And at higher levels, especially with martial characters, the chances to confirm that fumble are going to decrease dramatically. A 12th Level fighter with a 16 strength has a +15 to hit with any melee weapon they pick up and that's before magic enhancements and feats. A masterwork weapon alone makes that bonus +16. Weapon Finesee? +17. Is there a chance a marital fighter can still blow the Fumble confirm? Sure. but like I said that math at higher levels tends to lower that chance. And chance is still the operative word here because we're literally playing a game that involves rolling DICE.

I personally don't have an issue with critical fumbles, it's critical hits that I tend to have an issue with but I keep them in play because the players REALLY like them (except when they get hit by really BRUTAL ones and even then most people I play with just kinda wince and suck it up as part of the game.). But if I were going to remove critical fumbles because of player protest, I'd remove critical hits right along with them.


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If your miss understanding of player motivation was correct people would complain about critical just as much as fumbles because criticals can harm PCs
They don't, because that isn't the objection people are making.

The objection is fumbles get more likely the more powerful PCs get, which makes literally no sense and they are more likely to affect martial characters, which most people feel are already disadvantaged.

Maybe just read people's objections rather than making some up.


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Chess Pwn wrote:
Katapesh Fried Chicken wrote:
Wultram wrote:

Okay let's see.

Full BAB class 4 attacks, haste/speed weapon +1
Now that is 25% chance EVERY 6 seconds.

Add in TWF +3 attacks, and now we are up to 40%

Why not go all the way monk with haste and uses Ki for extra attack and got attack of opportunity in the round, that is 10 attacks so total of 50% chance of fumble every round. This demigod of martial arts on average seriously screws up in this situation 5 times every minute. I have been doing martial arts for over 2 decades and I have not seen the worst white belt do that badly.

Actually, it's still 5% no matter how many times you roll the dice, since the dice has no memory and each roll is independent of each other.

"Chance"=1-P(A) where P(A)=(19/20)^1 or simply =1/20

Each roll has a 5% chance, but the chance that at least 1 roll is a 1 when you make 10 rolls (while not the actual 50% listed) is significantly higher than 5%.

No, it's not. You're applying memory to the rolls. The die has NO memory and never will. Each time you roll the die it doesn't matter what the previous roll was, the die much like the honey badger doesn't give a F*&^. If you flip a coin 10 times does that have any impact on the 11th flip? On a d20 it's still 5% period.

Now if you were to roll 10 different d20s 1 time or 1 d20 10 times then you would have a ~40% chance of rolling a 1 because while the dice will still have no memory, the rolls are NO longer independent of one another thus:
%Chance = 1 - (19/20)^10 = ~40.13%
However, that's for one event. Rolling a single d20 for an attack roll is just one event as it's independent of any other rolls. You don't roll 10 d20's or 1 d20 ten times for an attack roll. Thus it's still just 5%.

Liberty's Edge

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber
ShinHakkaider wrote:


...
I personally don't have an issue with critical fumbles, it's critical hits that I tend to have an issue with but I keep them in play because the players REALLY like them (except when they get hit by really BRUTAL ones and even then most people I play with just kinda wince and suck it up as part of the game.). But if I were going to remove critical fumbles because of player protest, I'd remove critical hits right along with them.

Two comments: first, you're right that players tend to prefer critical hits (even though they're provably worse for players than not having them in the game), and if that's what your players want I'd think long and carefully before taking them out. Also, critical hits are an integral part of RAW, while critical fumbles don't even show up in Unchained.

Second, as a lot of people upthread have noted, implementing any sort of critical fumble rule weakens martials in a game where they're already running behind casters in a lot of ways. So if you're going to add that rule, I'd think long and carefully about how you're going to weaken casters to rebalance the game.


My favorite fumble rule (and by favorite I mean "only one I've seen that was functional and fun") worked like this-

If you roll a natural 1, you then make a DC15 Dex check. If you fail the dex check, you fumble. (This kept the check from punishing you as you leveled, and gave agile people an edge)

Fumbles were done on a random chart that was a list of status effects (prone, disarmed, sickened, etc). You'd roll on the chart, get a status effect, and then you, as the player, would have to come up with a dramatically appropriate reason that this happened to your character.

At the high end of the chart was a "roll on the next chart" result. The next chart was full of worse status effects (blinded, nauseated, etc).


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At the games I'm usually in, our normal house rule is that a natural 1 stops that creature's chain of attacks for that turn. Sometimes we break out the Critical Hits and Fumbles generator from the d20pfsrd, but usually we just go with the house rule of nat 1 basically automatically ending your turn.


The other fumble rule I've played with wasn't even mechanical. It was entirely a narrative/dramatic tool. It worked like this-

If you roll a 1, something dramatic happens. That something could be anything, but usually involved a terrain or surroundings-based event. Things like:

"you step in a small sinkhole, make a reflex save" (as per the terrain hazard trap rules)

"Everyone make perception checks. The noise of the battle has kicked off a small avalanche. You only have a few moments before the area you're fighting on gets a bunch of snow swept through it."

"The dwarves that built this now-abandoned mine left behind traps. Most have been broken or set off over time, but you just triggered one. You and everyone adjacent to you make a reflex save."

"You just got the wyvern's attention. It's obvious that for whatever reason, it's going to be focused on you now."

"The rope breaks."

"The handle of your weapon just splintered/came unraveled. It will be an easy fix, but until you take the time to do it, you're going to take a -2 attack penalty. Might want to switch to a backup weapon."

"Your burning ray misses the target and lights a large, dusty bookcase on fire. The flames are spreading at an impressive rate!"


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Diachronos wrote:
At the games I'm usually in, our normal house rule is that a natural 1 stops that creature's chain of attacks for that turn. Sometimes we break out the Critical Hits and Fumbles generator from the d20pfsrd, but usually we just go with the house rule of nat 1 basically automatically ending your turn.

So, in your games, it's best to play single-attack characters with vital strike and other "one big hit" feats.

honestly, that's kind of a terrible rule. It really punishes two-weapon fighters and monks, which are already struggling to keep up in combat


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Play a wizard - problem with terrible house rule solved.

Actually not a bad protest if you can get all the players who dislike the rule on board. Everyone play wizards and when the GM asks why explain that his house rule makes playing martials too unreliable.

Dark Archive

I had a DM once that if you rolled a nat 1 & you had a magic weapon, it had to make a save & if it failed it exploded in a 20ft radius inflicting 3d6 damage per "+" PLUS any other magic item in that radius had to make a save or it exploded in a 20ft radius inflicting 3d6 damage per "+" PLUS any magic item in that 20ft radius...you get the point. He would often brag about killing his first group in a chain reaction. Leaving me to ask "How is that fun?" This was in the mid 90's & it was 2e AD&D but it still annoys me to this day.....The Horror...


Pathfinder Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Usually if a GM has some sort of house rule that is sucking the fun out of the game for someone, I try to articulate that. If I can't change his mind then i'm stuck with it.

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Fumbles are exciting to some people. I can't stand them personally. Have to agree with everyone saying to explain how it isn't fun for you. But you will need to be prepared to walk out.


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Katapesh Fried Chicken wrote:
Chess Pwn wrote:
Katapesh Fried Chicken wrote:
Wultram wrote:

Okay let's see.

Full BAB class 4 attacks, haste/speed weapon +1
Now that is 25% chance EVERY 6 seconds.

Add in TWF +3 attacks, and now we are up to 40%

Why not go all the way monk with haste and uses Ki for extra attack and got attack of opportunity in the round, that is 10 attacks so total of 50% chance of fumble every round. This demigod of martial arts on average seriously screws up in this situation 5 times every minute. I have been doing martial arts for over 2 decades and I have not seen the worst white belt do that badly.

Actually, it's still 5% no matter how many times you roll the dice, since the dice has no memory and each roll is independent of each other.

"Chance"=1-P(A) where P(A)=(19/20)^1 or simply =1/20

Each roll has a 5% chance, but the chance that at least 1 roll is a 1 when you make 10 rolls (while not the actual 50% listed) is significantly higher than 5%.

No, it's not. You're applying memory to the rolls. The die has NO memory and never will. Each time you roll the die it doesn't matter what the previous roll was, the die much like the honey badger doesn't give a F*&^. If you flip a coin 10 times does that have any impact on the 11th flip? On a d20 it's still 5% period.

Now if you were to roll 10 different d20s 1 time or 1 d20 10 times then you would have a ~40% chance of rolling a 1 because while the dice will still have no memory, the rolls are NO longer independent of one another thus:
%Chance = 1 - (19/20)^10 = ~40.13%
However, that's for one event. Rolling a single d20 for an attack roll is just one event as it's independent of any other rolls. You don't roll 10 d20's or 1 d20 ten times for an attack roll. Thus it's still just 5%.

We aren't applying memory, YOUR OWN MATH shows that there's a 40% chance that at least 1 roll out of 10 is a 1.

"On a d20 it's still 5% period. Now if you were to roll 10 different d20s 1 time or 1 d20 10 times then you would have a ~40% chance of rolling a 1 because while the dice will still have no memory, the rolls are NO longer independent of one another thus:
%Chance = 1 - (19/20)^10 = ~40.13%"

"Each roll has a 5% chance, but the chance that at least 1 roll is a 1 when you make 10 rolls is significantly higher than 5%"

In a full attack that you're making 10 attacks in, you're making 10 attacks in a full attack. So that gives you a 40% chance of fumbling a turn as you only need 1 1 to fumble.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
BeefSupreme wrote:
I had a DM once that if you rolled a nat 1 & you had a magic weapon, it had to make a save & if it failed it exploded in a 20ft radius inflicting 3d6 damage per "+" PLUS any other magic item in that radius had to make a save or it exploded in a 20ft radius inflicting 3d6 damage per "+" PLUS any magic item in that 20ft radius...you get the point. He would often brag about killing his first group in a chain reaction. Leaving me to ask "How is that fun?" This was in the mid 90's & it was 2e AD&D but it still annoys me to this day.....The Horror...

Ahhh the good old days when players didn't cry every time their character died and most campaigns ended by TPK....

Players were real players, GMs were real GMs, and characters were written on toilet paper so at least you felt you got some use out of them.


Chess Pwn wrote:
yes, fumbles only hurt martials...

Not if touch spells can fumble.

Grand Lodge

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Pathfinder Adventure, Rulebook Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Touch spells are a small subset.


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Damn straight! Combat was a failure state you were lucky to survive. It aint no fun unless the homies trip and impale themselves on their own weapons every single fight now is it???


rando1000 wrote:
Chess Pwn wrote:
yes, fumbles only hurt martials...
Not if touch spells can fumble.

Spellcasters have tons of options on useful stuff to do that doesn't require an attack roll. Martials don't, them being useful is throwing the dice.

So sure, it can hurt casters, my statement was a little too strong, but the point is that it's like 99% a martial issue and 1% a subset of a subset of a caster issue.


Pathfinder Rulebook Subscriber

What about this for a fumble solution?
That opponent get a disadvantage they can use against you on your next attack.

So basically on your next attack after that fumble, you roll two dice for the attack and you just take the lower result. This can still result in you hitting you target with a lucky enough roll.


Pathfinder Companion, Pawns Subscriber; Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Superscriber

Huh, we've always confirmed fumbles against the target. In other words, if you roll a 1, roll again. If you hit the target on the 2nd roll, the critical is avoided, otherwise, draw from the deck. I thought this was the way it was always done (in spite of being an alternate rule). I guess not! Having to roll against your own character seems punitive, but it's a house rule either way.


We aren't applying memory, YOUR OWN MATH shows that there's a 40% chance that at least 1 roll out of 10 is a 1.

"On a d20 it's still 5% period. Now if you were to roll 10...

ChessPwn, since you don't seem to understand math I'll spell it out for you.

For a full attack (simplicity's stake only 4 attacks) it'll go like this: Attack 1d20 (5% botch chance) apply result then, next attack 1d20 (5% botch chance) apply result then, next attack 1d20 (5% botch chance) apply result and then final attack 1d20 (5% botch chance). Each attack is still only 5% botch chance because the results of the roll are independent from each other.

You're thinking of a grouped roll which is all 4 attacks at once: 4 Attacks 4d20 (18.55% chance of one die landing on 1).

The difference between these is confusing to people who don't get a kick out of statistics like I do, but it's there. I like to think of them as events. When you make an full attack (in this example) you are both rolling 4d20 and 1d20 4 times, it's where you apply the results, that is the key. Are you applying the results to the group as one event or to a single die roll as multiple events. In the case of attack rolls it goes to a single d20 NOT the group because it's a single event done multiple times. Thus it's always a 5% botch chance on attack rolls.

Sovereign Court

ShinHakkaider wrote:

What about this for a fumble solution?

That opponent get a disadvantage they can use against you on your next attack.

So basically on your next attack after that fumble, you roll two dice for the attack and you just take the lower result. This can still result in you hitting you target with a lucky enough roll.

That's doable.

My loathing for fumbles came from debilitating punishments that took rounds, the entire fight, or even entire levels to overcome. Such as broken weapons, mindeffecting penalties, and once the dropped weapon fell into a raging river and was lost all because of rolling a 1. Oh and these things happened every single fight.


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Katapesh Fried Chicken wrote:
Chess Pwn wrote:


We aren't applying memory, YOUR OWN MATH shows that there's a 40% chance that at least 1 roll out of 10 is a 1.
"On a d20 it's still 5% period. Now if you were to roll 10...

ChessPwn, since you don't seem to understand math I'll spell it out for you.

For a full attack (simplicity's stake only 4 attacks) it'll go like this: Attack 1d20 (5% botch chance) apply result then, next attack 1d20 (5% botch chance) apply result then, next attack 1d20 (5% botch chance) apply result and then final attack 1d20 (5% botch chance). Each attack is still only 5% botch chance because the results of the roll are independent from each other.

You're thinking of a grouped roll which is all 4 attacks at once: 4 Attacks 4d20 (18.55% chance of one die landing on 1).

The difference between these is confusing to people who don't get a kick out of statistics like I do, but it's there. I like to think of them as events. When you make an full attack (in this example) you are both rolling 4d20 and 1d20 4 times, it's where you apply the results, that is the key. Are you applying the results to the group as one event or to a single die roll as multiple events. In the case of attack rolls it goes to a single d20 NOT the group because it's a single event done multiple times. Thus it's always a 5% botch chance on attack rolls.

You don't seem to understand what is being said since all your math supports my statements.
chess pwn wrote:
Each roll has a 5% chance, but the chance that at least 1 roll is a 1 when you make 10 rolls is significantly higher than 5%

Each attack roll is always a 5% chance. But the chance that you full attack and get 1 of those 4 rolls as a nat 1 is higher than 5%.

Yes each individual roll is 5%. But we're only caring if any 1 of the 4 turn up as a nat 1. Since the likelihood of all 4 avoiding a nat 1 is a set outcome it means it's less likely to happen then any one die not landing on a 1. Thus the chances of getting at least one 1 goes up the more dice you roll in a turn. You showed the math that 10 attacks in a turn has a 40% chance of at least one of those being a 1.

Thus as the martial progresses from his 1 attack at lv1 to the crazy 10 attacks his likelihood of fumbling in a turn goes from 5% to 40%.


It's really mean to monks and Two Weapon Fighters, who get more attacks by default.


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Katapesh Fried Chicken wrote:
ChessPwn, since you don't seem to understand math I'll spell it out for you.

You don't seem to understand explaining math.

People are talking about the chance of getting at least one natural 1 over the course of ten die rolls. (The answer is 40.1%.)

"it's still 5% no matter how many times you roll the dice" does not answer this question.

I think some people can't even tell from what you've written whether you're just making the trivially obvious observation that it's 5% chance on each individual roll, or whether you genuinely believe that if you roll the dice a million times in a row, the chance of getting at least one natural 1 during that time is only 5%.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Companion, Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber
Katapesh Fried Chicken wrote:
Are you applying the results to the group as one event or to a single die roll as multiple events. In the case of attack rolls it goes to a single d20 NOT the group because it's a single event done multiple times. Thus it's always a 5% botch chance on attack rolls.

The chance of at least a single one on any of 4 d20 rolls is exactly the same whether you roll them all at once or one after the other.

Of course the chance of any particular roll being a fumble is a 5%. The chance of getting a fumble in a given round though can be much higher, depending on how many attacks you get in a round. If you get 4 attacks, it is around 19% chance you will fumble one of them, if it is 10 attacks, it is about 40%.


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This maths discussion may be the most painful thing I've ever read on this forum .-.


Rawhead wrote:

I'm not sure if this is the right forum for this, but I'm looking for advice, so here it goes...

I'm currently playing in a campaign in which the GM has, what I feel, an absolutely horrible house rule on how critical fumbles are handled. The mechanic runs like this: after a natural one is rolled, roll the d20 again, with all of the same bonuses. If the result of the second roll hits your character, then you suffer an adverse effect.

As a melee character with a high strength, this means I'm scoring that adverse effect (usually dropping my weapon, but can be significant damage) on a roll of 9 or higher.

Everyone else at the table hates the rule, but he won't budge, and his only defense is "this is how I've always done it." Does anyone have any pointers on dealing with a stubborn GM with a cherished, but terrible, house rule?

Yes, this is a horrible rule. Fumbles and crits are best handled by variable outcomes. Try picking up the Crit Fumbles or Crit Hits decks from paizo and giving them to your GM to use.


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Brother Fen wrote:
Rawhead wrote:

I'm not sure if this is the right forum for this, but I'm looking for advice, so here it goes...

I'm currently playing in a campaign in which the GM has, what I feel, an absolutely horrible house rule on how critical fumbles are handled. The mechanic runs like this: after a natural one is rolled, roll the d20 again, with all of the same bonuses. If the result of the second roll hits your character, then you suffer an adverse effect.

As a melee character with a high strength, this means I'm scoring that adverse effect (usually dropping my weapon, but can be significant damage) on a roll of 9 or higher.

Everyone else at the table hates the rule, but he won't budge, and his only defense is "this is how I've always done it." Does anyone have any pointers on dealing with a stubborn GM with a cherished, but terrible, house rule?

Yes, this is a horrible rule. Fumbles and crits are best handled by variable outcomes. Try picking up the Crit Fumbles or Crit Hits decks from paizo and giving them to your GM to use.

Or don't waste your money on a product that makes the game less good?


taks wrote:
Huh, we've always confirmed fumbles against the target. In other words, if you roll a 1, roll again. If you hit the target on the 2nd roll, the critical is avoided, otherwise, draw from the deck. I thought this was the way it was always done (in spite of being an alternate rule).

That is the recommended rule as presented in the fumble deck. The confirmation roll is done with your full attack bonus, too. They present two other possible rules, but outright say that these are not recommended to be used. One is that you confirm using the same attack bonus as with the original attack and the second is that you draw a card immediately if you roll a 1 which I find incredibly awful.

Silver Crusade

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I used a critical hit and fumble system of my own design waaay back in 1st Ed AD&D.

Statistically it worked a bit like 3.p. You'd roll 2d20: one die for your attack roll, the second for your crit/fumble chance. If you hit, and the crit/fumble die was within your crit range, you scored a crit and rolled on the crit table a la Rolemaster. If you missed, and the crit/fumble die was within your fumble range, then you rolled on the fumble table. Like 3.p, different weapons had different crit ranges, but they also had different fumble ranges (most were 5% either way though). I made crit/fumble tables that had different effects based on weapon type. It wasn't as harsh as Rolemaster, and my players enjoyed it.

Much later, in a 3.p group I played in, we used a 20/20 kill rule (if your confirmation roll is a natural 20, you kill your target whatever it is). I hated that. Especially when I had a newly minted level 3 character, complete with detailed backstory, killed before he could ever roll a die.


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Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber

Critical fumble rules are awful. There is already too much randomness in combat to add yet another punishment (other than missing) for poor rolling.

Personally I would not play with a DM that had fumble rules. They are dumb and only really affect martials.

You could always buy this: Look mom no ones! then you don't have to worry about rolling a one again. :)


Toblakai wrote:

Critical fumble rules are awful. There is already too much randomness in combat to add yet another punishment (other than missing) for poor rolling.

Personally I would not play with a DM that had fumble rules. They are dumb and only really affect martials.

You could always buy this: Look mom no ones! then you don't have to worry about rolling a one again. :)

While I agree with you how would you feel about fumble rules that impact everyone equally as well as having very little effect (such as 1 damage)


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Lost Omens, Pawns, Rulebook, Starfinder Accessories, Starfinder Adventure Path, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Pathfinder Battles Case Subscriber
Dox of the ParaDox twins wrote:


While I agree with you how would you feel about fumble rules that impact everyone equally as well as having very little effect (such as 1 damage)

How would you make it affect everyone equally? 16th level two weapon fighter, 7+ attacks a round. 1 in 3 rounds will be a fumble.

16th level wizard, fireball/magic missile/waves of exhaustion/etc no 1's rolled.

Unless your thinking if the fighter missed the whole party takes damage?

One thing I know for sure, if I ever play with a DM with fumble rules, I won't be building a melee character and definitely not a TWF or natural attacks build. Vital strikes build would be the only viable one, maybe.


I don't know how it was just something I thought of. I only use fumble rules if my players ask for it because I don't like them. When I do use them it's just take one damage whenever a one is rolled and then confirmed (by rolling another one)


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The test for all fumble rules:

Have a squad of mid level fighters square off against training dummies for an hour. If the training dummies win, rethink your fumble rules.


Agreed


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dragonhunterq wrote:

Play a wizard - problem with terrible house rule solved.

Actually not a bad protest if you can get all the players who dislike the rule on board. Everyone play wizards and when the GM asks why explain that his house rule makes playing martials too unreliable.

As a DM, this is actually something to track. If you introduce house rules and your players start avoiding certain classes, you should examine the rule to see if it's producing the intended effect that you desire.


Most of the people advocating fumbles should think about switching to Paranoia. At least with that game you know that you are playing a bungling incompetent that is supposed to die in amusing ways. Because watching characters die in amusing ways seems to be the main attractions of fumbles.


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thorin001 wrote:
Most of the people advocating fumbles should think about switching to Paranoia. At least with that game you know that you are playing a bungling incompetent that is supposed to die in amusing ways. Because watching characters die in amusing ways seems to be the main attractions of fumbles.

Recommending Paranoia is treason; as is assuming the excellent troubleshooters chosen by The Computer are any less than competent.


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Guys, please stop trying to tell other people how to play their games.

We play with the fumble deck, and the battles looked back upon with the most nostalgia and laughter, the stories that come up time and again as everyone sits around the table have almost all involved a crit fumble.

Just because it doesn't work for you doesn't make it WRONGBADFUN.

Express your opinions but please do not belittle someone else for thinking differently.

I honestly take offence at being told to go play a different system. I play the game my group enjoys is, that is all that should matter.

Tell us why you don't like it sure, but don't tell me I am wrong for using it.


Got a great idea: since a lot here feel the critical fumble system overly penalises martial characters, why not just have a spellcaster roll a caster level check each time they cast a spell? Natural 1 equals critical spell fumble! Ought to level the playing field.

But seriously, just play the game how you want to play. It's a fairly common houserule, enough that Paizo published an official set of rules for it. Use it or don't use it, but it's no more or less wrong than any other houserule. Realistically, a soldier beating on a training dummy for an hour is probably gonna hurt themselves somehow too. Ever tried lifting a real sword? Those things are heavy!

I like critical fumbles. My group likes critical fumbles, too. It works for us and makes the game fun-er. There's always the option to reroll a bad throw, as we use a system similar to Pathfinder Society to allow rerolls as well, but sometimes it's fun to fail. The only way you lose is if you don't have fun. Sitting around a table with friends, cheering when you get lucky, screaming obscenities when the dice hate you, is the real reward of the game.


Rawhead wrote:

I'm not sure if this is the right forum for this, but I'm looking for advice, so here it goes...

I'm currently playing in a campaign in which the GM has, what I feel, an absolutely horrible house rule on how critical fumbles are handled. The mechanic runs like this: after a natural one is rolled, roll the d20 again, with all of the same bonuses. If the result of the second roll hits your character, then you suffer an adverse effect.

As a melee character with a high strength, this means I'm scoring that adverse effect (usually dropping my weapon, but can be significant damage) on a roll of 9 or higher.

Everyone else at the table hates the rule, but he won't budge, and his only defense is "this is how I've always done it." Does anyone have any pointers on dealing with a stubborn GM with a cherished, but terrible, house rule?

I agree that is a really bad rule. The way I always did crit stuff was the rule of 3s. If you roll a 1 then just a fail you do something silly but not drastic. If you roll a 1 then a 1 bad happens, your sword goes flying and your pants fall off kind of bad. If you roll a 1 then a 1 then a 1 you die, no if ans or buts you cleave your own head open and die. Now the same thing happens for 20's. If your roll 20 then 20 you cripple a limb or rend his armor open, something nice and extra but not super. If you roll a 20 20 20 you hit the perfect thrust and insta kill whatever you just hit.


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J4RH34D wrote:

Guys, please stop trying to tell other people how to play their games.

We play with the fumble deck, and the battles looked back upon with the most nostalgia and laughter, the stories that come up time and again as everyone sits around the table have almost all involved a crit fumble.

Just because it doesn't work for you doesn't make it WRONGBADFUN.

Express your opinions but please do not belittle someone else for thinking differently.

I honestly take offence at being told to go play a different system. I play the game my group enjoys is, that is all that should matter.

Tell us why you don't like it sure, but don't tell me I am wrong for using it.

Besides people giving their opinion about how fumbles make the game worse (for them, at least), I think the point of the discussion is that some rules make fumbling illogical.

People are pointing to rule flaws that make characters become less competent when they should become more instead.
If you like fumbles, of course go ahead and use them! Most people will agree, though, that it would be better to implement a fumble rule that makes sense... like:
- only the first attack each round (with each weapon, maybe) can fumble;
- if there is a fumble confirmation roll, don't make it so that more competent characters have a GREATER chance of fumbling.


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Back in 3.0 or 3.5, we used fumble rules, and - aware of the math - our fumble rules were that only the *last* attack made at your lowest base attack bonus could fumble. We also had a fumble confirmation roll, which used your highest attack, and if that confirmation was also a miss, then you fumbled.

This actually gave martials quite the "advantage" (compared to characters with less than full BAB), because once you hit +6 BAB, your primary attacks couldn't fumble anymore.

By making it specifically only the last attack made at the lowest BAB, it meant that even playing a level 1 ranger with TWF, only the off-hand attack had the chance at fumbling.

It's the most balanced form of fumble rules I've seen, but we eventually abandoned them because frankly we just started forgetting them once the party got to the mid levels of play.


I think I would just talk him into having it work like roll a 1 then if
I miss with my confirmation roll than its a fumble. This way makes a bit more sense and its slight so you can spring it on him in baby steps.

Random Idea I had while reading over: you could give the roll -20 then have a chart that goes backwards from 0 with -20 being severe critical fumble while -1 would be very minor like a -1 on next roll or some such. So are your skill increases you would be less likely to stab yourself.

I probably won't use it but I thought it was quaint.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Rulebook, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

Megistone has it right: if you want to play with fumble rules, please go for it, it's your table, your fun, I am not going to argue with your right to that.

But...

If the maths of your fumble rules mean that a 20th level fighter will, on average, fumble more often than a 1st level commoner, then there's a problem with your fumble rules.

At the worst, all characters should approximately fumble as often as each other, but a better system makes better (higher level) characters less likely to fumble.


JDLPF wrote:

Got a great idea: since a lot here feel the critical fumble system overly penalises martial characters, why not just have a spellcaster roll a caster level check each time they cast a spell? Natural 1 equals critical spell fumble! Ought to level the playing field.

But seriously, just play the game how you want to play. It's a fairly common houserule, enough that Paizo published an official set of rules for it. Use it or don't use it, but it's no more or less wrong than any other houserule. Realistically, a soldier beating on a training dummy for an hour is probably gonna hurt themselves somehow too. Ever tried lifting a real sword? Those things are heavy!

I like critical fumbles. My group likes critical fumbles, too. It works for us and makes the game fun-er. There's always the option to reroll a bad throw, as we use a system similar to Pathfinder Society to allow rerolls as well, but sometimes it's fun to fail. The only way you lose is if you don't have fun. Sitting around a table with friends, cheering when you get lucky, screaming obscenities when the dice hate you, is the real reward of the game.

I quoted the whole post even if I only have comments on parts of it.

That would only make that spesific fumble rule slightly less worse, it would still not make it equal given that a martial can in rather extraordinary circumstances reach teens in the number of their rolls while a caster is limited at best 2/rnd. Then there is the fact that majority of people on my side of the fence, think any sort of fumble rule is bad.

Ideas should be critiqued based on their merit, so no not all houserules are equal. Just like not all opinions are equal. I will stand by my comparison to bubblegum-pop. I belive the difference in opinion at least in some cases how much you value the game part of RPG and also if you like more serious tone or your group is beer and pretzels.

And no soldier hitting a training dummy for an hour is not going to hurt themselves not on average at least. The worst that will happen is blisters due to shock from hitting the target. Also no real swords most certainly are not heavy and due the point of balance on them being close to the hilt they even feel lighter. One handed swords generally speaking are from kilo to 1.5 kilos, 2 to 3.5kg for two handed swords.

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