3.5e Flaws, Variant (3.5e Variant Rule)
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This supplement to character creation that expands on the original Flaw system introduced in D&D 3.5 Unearthed Arcana.
The Tome of Flaws expands the Flaw system and introduces a random element to character creation.
Flaws are like the flip side of Feats and Talents are the middle ground between the two.
A Feat enables a character to be better than normal at performing a task (or even to do something that normal characters can’t). A Flaw restricts a character’s capabilities or imposes a penalty of some sort. A Talent has the ability to be negative or positive and is a mixture between the two.
A player may roll up to two Flaws when creating a character.
After 1st level, a character cannot take on additional flaws unless the DM specifically allows it and/or in-game actions/reactions call for it.
Each Flaw a player rolls entitles their character to a bonus Feat or an additional role on the Talent Table (see Tome of Talents). In other words, when you create a character, if you opt to have two flaws, you can also take two bonus Feats or two additional roles on the Talents Table beyond those your character would be normally entitled to. Unlike Talents (see Tome of Talents) or Feats, Flaws are entirely negative in their impact on a character’s capabilities.
If a character does opt to take additional roles on the Table, these can be beneficial or negative depending on the characters rolls.
Each of the flaws described here has a specific game effect. Most require a degree of roleplaying and can create situations that incur additional bonus experience points and negative experience points if the player embraces or ignores their Flaws.
Some flaws can only be taken by a character who meets a special requirement. If a character rolls a flaw that they cannot use, due to a specific requirement, the next Flaw in the list is chosen as their Flaw.
Before a Flaw can be rolled, the player will need to have their characters stats rolled, chosen a race, picked an alignment, and chosen a class. This is to prevent a reroll or selection of a Flaw that cannot be used.
This supplement is a random Flaw generator for the character and does not allow the player to choose a Flaw for their character.
You use the Flaw, Substance Addiction and Phobia Charts to determine the characters Flaws.
If you happen to roll a Phobia or Substance Addiction, these require an additional roll of those charts to determine the nature of their Phobia or Addiction. Substance Addiction and Phobias are not individually added to the Flaw Chart to prevent the overabundance of them in the Flaws.
Some Flaws, Substance Addiction and Phobias cause the character to further drill down on them, to iron out the specific Flaw.
To use these tables, you will need a D6 (a six sided die), a D8 (an eight sided die) and three D10s and a D20 to produce the various number ranges required.
D100 is produced by rolling two D10’s and reading one as “tens” and reading the other as “ones”.
D1000 is produced by rolling three d10s and you roll on the reading one as “hundreds”, one as “tens” and reading the other as “ones”.
Flaws do allow a player to iron out their characters feelings, wants and needs. It also gives the player and DM some great roleplaying experiences as well. Choosing to gain the extra feats and talents from flaws has risks and a player can lose experience points by not roleplaying or acting on their Flaws.
To determine the Flaws, the player will want to decide if they want one or two Flaws.
After they decide on the number of Flaws that they want, you will want them to roll D1000 to determine their Flaw(s).
Consult the Flaw Chart to determine their Flaw(s) (see below).
Most players will take Flaws to further develop their roleplaying potential for a character. They also take them to create circumstances were the DM and player can have fun and exciting encounters.
Some players will take it solely for the additional Feat(s) or potential Talent bonuses.
Increasing the characters power with drawbacks has always been a staple in fantasy movies and books. If roleplayed properly can lead to memorable times with your friends that will be talked about well after the campaign has been finished.