Items and baked-in DCs


Homebrew and House Rules

Grand Lodge

Some items have a baked-in DC that is either not very good at the level you receive it or becomes useless pretty soon after you out level it, right?

A blanket change like, "use your class/ spell DC instead for items" would throw balance out of whack and make some cheap items waaaay better than intended.

So here's what I'm thinking...

Each day, a number of times equal to your Cha mod, you can use your class/spell DC for an item instead of it's listed DC. For every 4 levels the item is beneath your current character level, reduce this DC by 1.
To clarify: For permanent items, it would be one use of the ability per Cha Mod, not boosted for the whole day.

Thoughts? Any potential issues? Too exploitable?

I have several players that are much more clever than I am so I wanted to ask my friends here in the forums before trying to implement it.


This somewhat resembles the ditched Resonance mechanic. I think it's not bad as a houserule, its main downside being another thing to track and a bit of math.
I don't know if there some items that could break balance exist, though.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

If Resonance had stuck to one lane instead of trying to be everything, this would have been my top pick.

I think it's a good house rule, and I like that you've included some limitation on lower level items. I think it should be fine based on its limited nature and that ever 1 DC the ability drops by means a lot.

I like it.


I am not sure that if I were to add something similar I'd tie it to a stat.

I'd rather add a feat or simply allow any character ( for free ) to choose one single item to apply their class DC. I think that allowing charisma user to benefit from that in a similar way may lead to some powercreep.

I can think of "incredible investiture", which is "peculiar" as well as "situational":

- Requires a general feat
- Requires level 11
- Requires 16 charisma
- Gives 2 extra invested items ( 20% more than the standard )

Thinking about allowing a number of items, equal to the charisma modifier, to use the character DC seems way too much to me.

Anyway, as Megistone pointed out, I also don't have a clue about anything which may break the balance ( and I am interested in speculations and impressions from anybody who tested something similar ).


The one issue that immediately springs to mind is items that have multiple versions (lesser/moderate/greater/etc). Using tanglefoot bags as an example, the higher level versions have higher Escape DCs - this ability would reduce (not eliminate, but reduce) the need to purchase the higher level versions of tanglefoot bags.

I am not sure if limited uses is enough to mitigate this, but am not sure what else you could use to mitigate this. Maybe some kind of clause that restricts it to items that don't have higher level versions?


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Rulebook Subscriber

I can see that being an issue, yeah.

On the other hand, I've been in so many games where the party is looking through their inventories to find some way to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat and someone goes "Oh! I have [X expendable item]... oh wait it's from like 10 levels ago and is completely useless"

Also, items whose higher level versions *only* raise their DC are not something I'm super concerned about saving. They're not very interesting, you know?


WatersLethe wrote:

I can see that being an issue, yeah.

On the other hand, I've been in so many games where the party is looking through their inventories to find some way to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat and someone goes "Oh! I have [X expendable item]... oh wait it's from like 10 levels ago and is completely useless"

Also, items whose higher level versions *only* raise their DC are not something I'm super concerned about saving. They're not very interesting, you know?

Well, the reason I said
Quote:
this ability would reduce (not eliminate, but reduce)

is that many of those items have other effects that scale up (for most bombs, this is the item bonus to attack rolls, and specifically for tanglefoot bags you have the increased penalty to movement speeds), but your point is taken.

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