USR Wednesdays: Expanded Domains

Domains, sets of spells based on a common theme, are an unbelievably simple way to give a character personality and in-game benefits at the same time. I’ve already introduced domains for Domino Writing-style games, but didn’t offer much in terms of game rules. Here’s one option.

Most domains grant a Domain Die in certain situations. The Domain Die is an additional d6 that’s rolled along with the regular stat die when attempting an action where the domain is relevant. If you’re using the Domino Writing-style superhero rules, the Domain Die is a d10 instead of a d6. A hero can use the Domain Die (or use a domain ability) a number of times equal to twice his her or her level per day. In a game with more powerful characters, a hero can roll the Domain Die as many times as he or she wants, as long as the game master approves.

Air: add the result of the Domain Die to the stat die result when using magic that affects the air, like creating a thunderstorm or pushing someone from a distance using the wind.

A very green sky, apparently.
Harness the power of the sky! (image: WotC, probably)

Most other domains can use the same rule for the types of magic they cover. The domains listed elsewhere in this blog that this applies to are:

Animal, Birth, Chaos, Creation, Darkness, Death, Deceit, Destruction, Earth, Evil, Family, Fire, Freedom, Friendship, Good, Hope, Justice, Law, Life, Light, Love, Nature, Passion, Plant, Protection, Secrets, Storms, Strength, Travel, Water

Community: add the result of the Domain Die to any die roll another character makes, as long as the action that character is making is contributing to building a community (for example, an Ego roll to rally a group of rebels, or an Action roll to secure a kingdom’s long-lost treasure). Combat rolls don’t count: though slaying a roving band of orcs would help the halfling village survive, killing isn’t building community!

Healing: after a battle, roll 2 dice and add them together. That’s the total number of hit points the hero can restore to himself and/or his allies. A character with this domain can only roll once after each battle.

Insanity: once per battle, select one enemy and roll the Domain Die. On an odd number, that enemy does not move or attack for that many turns. On an even number, nothing happens.

Knowledge: add the result of a Domain Die roll to any activity related to learning or what the character already knows, like how to repair a car, or what the hero remembers about the royal family. Most often, of course, these are Wits rolls.

Luck: if the character rolls a 1 on any die roll, flip the die over so it shows its highest result.

Movement: the character can move twice his or her normal speed for a full minute (or for an entire battle in combat).

War: once per battle, the hero can make a second attack immediately after the first, and rolls the Domain Die along with each attack.

Wealth: whenever the character needs money, roll the Domain Die and multiply the result by 5. That’s how many gold coins, credits, or dollars the character is able to come up with at the moment. If the character needs to appear wealthy in high society, add the Domain Die result to an Ego roll.

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