Just wondering how much people have used houserules with the game? (I read the starship houserule thread below and was interested).

I think the B5 rpg is pretty good as it is but I'm considering a houserule for the following:

- Taking out Hitpoints: I was thinking about going with a damage value for weapons that you resist with a fortitude save. Recieving wound levels instead of hitpoints. This seemed more fitting with Babylon 5.

- Using 3d6 instead of D20: The linear nature and high range of the varience on a D20 has never been something that I"ve enjoyed. I was thinking about going with a 3d6 instead of D20 rule.

Any thoughts?


Hmmm.. I like your 3d6 idea, the average curve is much better than the 1d20 random result, how would you handle the feats adding to crit chance?

The save v damage is interesting, would you use 3d6 with that also, 1d20 would be way to wild for that (if im reading ur suggestion right).

Would like to see your suggestion in better detail :)



Sounds like a Hero System player :)

I don't think the 3d6 vs d20 makes too much difference. All a matter of what you like. It does make the extremes much les likely, and hence the automatic miss/hit. And you have to consider whether a player can "take 18." A 20 on the d20 is a 5% chance. An 18 is more like .5%, or 1/10th as likely. That same 5% in more like a 16 on 3d6.

One thing that would interest me is a hit location chart. I often use the old Hero System chart, usually just for roleplay purposes, rather than having it actually affect damage. In B5 it might be worth incorporating some of the old Hero System rules.

Hit Location (3d6)
3-5 Head x2 Dmg
6 Hand x.5 Dmg
7 Shoulder
8-9 Arm x.5 Dmg
10-11 Chest
12 Stomach x1.5 Dmg
13 Vitals x2 Dmg
14 Thigh
15-16 Lower Leg x.5 Dmg
17-18 Foot x.5 Dmg

Hit location roll could be modified if the player called a shot. Penalty to hit, but smaller hit location range (High shot -1 to hit, location 2d6+1)

If the hit does more than half the character's hit points with a single hit, that hit location is impaired. All the character's hit points with a single hit, it is disabled. The difference is that the character regains use of an impaired limb in short order (die roll for minutes, hours, days, etc.) A disabled limb will require MedLab at the very least to recover.

Disabling shots to the head, chest, etc, almost always result in death. Impairing shots may leave the character unconscious, unable to act, etc.

I often use these rules in games that are supposed to be "realistic." B5 is a good example. I would not use them for D&D or Champions, etc.

As for your damage rule varient, I've seen this frequently in older games like James Bond and anything by GDW. It seemed to woirk well, penalizing character rolls based on the current level of damage. I haven't seen it much recently, but most of my newer systems are d20 or Hero System.


The only house rule I have made is to change getting a sensor lock during ship combat from a standard action to a free action. Just makes more sense to me.


I don't have a solid plan on using 3d6 instead right now but I'm thinking about making wounds and healing much harder with some house rules. This is just a initial draft of my idea but I was going to keep hitpoints and apply wound levels and healing as follows:

Wound Levels

Wound levels reflect how much damage the character has taken and what effect the wounds have. To determine the number of hit points the character has at each wound level take their full hit points and divide them by 3, placing the first point of any remainder (if any) in the Heavy category, and a the second point of any remainder (if any) in the Moderate category.

Example: Cole is a soldier with a total of 10 hit points. Dividing by 3 his level of light wounds is from 10-8 hit points, his level of Moderate wounds is from 7-5 hit points, and his level of Heavy wounds is from 4-1 hit point (the remainder of 1 is placed in this wound category.)

The effects of the various wound levels are as follows:

Light (Full and 2/3 Hit points)
: No effect.

Moderate (2/3 and 1/3 Hit points)
-10 ft movement, -1 wound penalty.

Heavy: (1/3 to 1 Hit point)
-10 ft movement, -2 wound penalty, restricted to movement and standard actions in a round if the character opts to take a single full round action they must make a fortitude save DC 15 or receive an additional hit point.

Reaching zero hit points and below is also handled in a slightly different manner. The character is considered to be Disabled from 0 down to negative hit points equal to their constitution modifier. Once they exceed their that value in negative hit points they enter dying status which lasts until they exceed their constitution score in negative hit points.

Disabled: (0 – Negative Con Modifier Hit points)
You can only take a single move or standard action each turn (but not both, nor can you take full-round actions). You can take move actions without further injuring yourself, but if you perform any standard action (or any other strenuous action) you take 1 point of damage after the completing the act. Unless your activity increased your hit points, you lose 1 more hit point due to the effort.

Dying: (Negative Con Modifier to Negative Constitution Score Hit points)
A dying character immediately falls unconscious and can take no actions. A dying character continues to lose 1 hit point every round on their initiative until they dye or are stabilized. Each round a character has a 10% chance of stabilizing on their own.

Dead: (Hit points exceeding your Negative Constitution Score)
You are dead, gone, finished, no more, shuffled off the mortal coil, in a place where no shadows fall.

Example: Cole has a constitution score of 14 with a con modifier of +2. He is shot with a PPG rifle and drops to -1 hit point. He makes his fortitude save to stay standing and during his initiative he retreats and returns fire, receiving an additional hit point for the effort dropping him to -2 hit points. Since this is equal to his negative con modifier he is still considered Disabled, but if he takes another hit point he drops to ‘Dying’ status.

Wound Penalties: These are negative modifiers applied to all checks, attack rolls, and saves.

Characters need to make a fortitude save each day they have wounds. A successful save results in the healing of 1 hit point or point of stat loss and missed saves result in no healing at all. The DC for this save is 15 but can be modified depending on the level of care they are receiving.

Healing Bonus**
-5 if not resting.
+5 if resting and receiving basic care from caregiver (DC 15 medical check)
+10 if resting and being treated in a basic medical facility.
+15 if resting and being treated in a quality medical facility
** A check roll of 1 always results in a failure to heal for the day.


Sorry that was me posting above. I forgot to log in.

I was also thinking about adding rules for armor that were similar to concealment miss chances. In this case the chance would be for armor to be effective. Vests would have a 50% effectiveness while more comprehensive armor may have 100% and wouldn't require a coverage roll at all.

Any ideas on this or the above?


Great ideas Streamweaver, it makes for an even stronger "hard-sf feel", very realistic.
Personaly, I would stick to the original rules, since I don't like to add too much bookkeeping as it may drag the game to a crawl.

But that's just me.


Just a couple of quick space combat house rules from Iowa:

- Free action to 'aquire target'

- Always do 1 point of damage no matter the DR, as long as you are within three size catagories of the target.

- Can target external targets, ie gunpods, engines, etc with an sensor roll at 5+Target's Stealth, Successful attack roll at 10+targets DV. Damage is applied as a critical hit to that system.

- For campaign needs a Hyperion carries two squads of 6 Starfuries. And Three Shuttles.

- System alarms will grant pilots a chance to eject, before killing blows, or unavoidable collisions. Reflex Save DC 15 to eject in time or Die.



Hi. I've been lurking around here for a while and decided that this would be a good place to jump in, because I've practically rewritten the rules. I think the only thing I haven't tweaked, revised, or radically altered is the race stats. The more radical changes I’ve made:

I've added "Class Feats" for every class except Telepaths. I've given the players a list of feats to choose from that are appropriate for the class. For the most part I've used the Regional Feats from the EA Sourcebook. In some cases this replaces existing class abilities (I've switched out half of the Diplomat's Contacts for class feats), and in other cases (most significantly the Worker) they are additional abilities.

I've also added the ability for the Worker and the Scientist to be able to select two additional class skills based on whatever their specialty is (for instance, a Scientist whose primary area of study is Knowledge (law), i.e. a lawyer, might choose Diplomacy and Intimidate). Which reminds me that I’ve changed the Class Skill lists, too, but I can’t remember precisely how at the moment.

I’ve added several Feats and Skills, mostly things that already exist in D&D or D20 Modern, that I wanted to incorporate. I’ve also rewritten some of the existing Class Abilities and Feats. The list is too long to go into here.

I’ve completely rewritten the vehicle size chart, including size modifiers and damage multipliers, and cut it off at Colossal V (have there been any Colossal VI ships yet? I haven't noticed any). Ditto crew experience ratings and maneuvers. (Did anyone else notice there were two different charts for crew experience in the main rulebook?) I’ve also revised the collision rules to make them (marginally) simpler.

I’ve used a couple of things from Unearthed Arcana (a great sourcebook for any D20 GM, not just D&D): fractional BAB and Saves (I want to encourage multiclassing) and Actions Points (which I’m using more like Fortune Points from the old B5 RPG). I’m toying with different damage systems, but haven’t settled on one yet.

I also wrote a Ranger prestige class which is eerily similar to the one Mongoose produced, and I’ve created my own character and vehicle sheets to replace the horribly space-inefficient inefficient one in the book. (Which, if anyone is interested in using, I can put on my website and post links to here. They’re both Word documents.)

I think that’s more than enough out of me for a first post. Yeesh.



Welcome to the board Psychoadept! :)

What a first post! Reinvented the wheel, did we? :shock: :eek:
All your changes sounds fascinating, though. You're right about encouraging multiclassing, and about the usefulness of Unearthed Arcana.

I'd be really interested to see your take on a vehicle sheet and a character sheet. Thanks in advance.


redlaco said:
Reinvented the wheel, did we?

Yeah, what can I say? *shrug* I like doing things my own way. :)

My Character Sheet can be found here and my Vehicle Sheet here. The only thing I can think of on them that is my own invention is the Size Number on the Vehicle Sheet. I've just assigned a number to each size category to make figuring size differences easier during collisions. I find it helpful to print charts of maneuvers and speed modifiers and such on the back of the Vehicle Sheet.



Mostly good ideas, I've only got one problem so far.

You're links for your character and vehicle sheets don't seem to be working for me. Anyone esle having a problem with this.


Going to it directly didn't work for me, but if you go to the directory below it, you can then click on the file directly and get into it.


No problems then. I didn't try to just save it to disk before, but I was able to download it that way. Thanks for the effort, they look good.


Well Psychoadept welcome to the insanity! Nice character sheet and ship sheet! I know you like doing things your own way, but during your lurking have you seen:

Elfman's One page Editable PDF Babylon 5 D20 Character Sheet - HERE


My one page Ship Sheet I created in Elfman's Style hosted by the gracious gents over at You can see it HERE.

Good work again by the way . . . enjoy your stay on the boards and watch out for the guys with the white coats. For some reason the sleaves are way to long. :)



No, I hadn't seen those before. Good stuff. I like the fact you included a maneuver chart; I actually have one on my vehicle sheet, but it bears so little resemblance to what's in the books that I didn't include it. I'm confused about one thing: in your houserules, you say weapons may only fire once a round, but you provide space for up to five attacks. Am I misunderstanding your houserule?



Nope, not at all. Only one Starfury weapon system can be fired in a round. Not both. According to the rulebook, of course. Thus, the reason I included the 5 attacks was:

1) It is possible for Characters to have more than 1 attack per round, hence the need for an accurate reflection of character ability.

2) If the players find themselves in something other than a starfury, it may be able to have multiple attacks. And there I feel you can't fire more unlinked weapons than you have base attacks. I mean 1 gunner on a hyperion isn't going to handle all the guns. He could handle two, maybe three guns in a pinch, but not all of them.

Since I attempted to make the ship sheet work for any vessel, it needed up to 5 attacks. However I mainly designed the sheet to help my players. (a squad of Starfury pilots during the Dilgar war)

Glad you liked, hope I answered you questions . . .


*processing... processing* Not sure why I'm having so much trouble wrapping my mind around this. My understanding is this:

If a ship has more than one weapon which can be fired in a round, a character can fire a number of different weapons equal to his number of attacks, but may not fire the same weapon multiple times.

If that's right, it makes sense to me. I would be inclined to use it myself. If that's not it, then I'm really having an off day.