Rules (Payday Supplement)

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I'm sure you'll learn as you go, but we need to make sure you know how things work around here.


The Payday supplement is markedly different from standard fifth edition. Many rules, mechanics, and assumptions are changed from normal fifth edition Dungeons and Dragons. Of course, any players can agree as a group to not use the rule changes presented in this page, but the supplement is designed with the assumption that all of these rules are in effect.

Characters no Longer have a Wisdom Score[edit]

"Wise"? We might not be dumb enough to work for the government, but you don't end up in this line of work without some screws loose. The only wise man in that bank is the owner, he hustles thousands off idiots without lifting a finger... But that's not us, so risking our lives's the only way we can get a cut of what he makes. Don't worry, I'm sure he's got insurance.

Characters in the Payday setting do not have a wisdom score. Being a successful heister is demanding, but foresight isn't one of those demands. Similarly, there's no such thing as being too shrewd to be scared of a shotgun, or wise enough to stare down a brute wearing an anti-bomb vest with an army-grade LMG 5. The way characters get over the innate fear for their life is with their panache and force of personality, and rarely their logical brain might help them rationalize their fears. This applies to both player characters and NPC's.

How this affects the skills a character might posses is detailed below.

Changed Skill List[edit]

A heister interacts with a very different world from a traditional fifth edition character. There are different challenges and different methods to bypass those challenges compared to a fantastical medieval world. To represent those changes, the list of skills that characters can be proficient in has been changed and remade. Below is the new Skill list.

Any skill that is not present in fifth edition or whose parent ability score has been changed is marked in italics.



Your Strength (Athletics) check covers difficult situations you encounter while doing physical feats of strength that require you to create great force with your own body. Examples include:

  • You attempt to break down a door with a hatchet, or even kick it down.
  • You struggle to walk as fast and stable as you can while carrying a large amount of bags
  • You try to throw an important piece of equipment across a spacious room, over the cops' heads.

Your Strength (Intimidation) check covers your attempts to use your physique and stature to get people to do what you want in stressful situations. Examples include

  • Shooting your gun into the roof of a building to get all the civilians to listen to your orders
  • Making a bank teller do as you say instead of raising an alarm
  • Threatening a police officer with what will happen if they don't help you and your crew



Your Dexterity (Acrobatics) check covers attempts to keep your balance and stay on your feet in most situations. You can use your Dexterity (Acrobatics) to:

  • Keep yourself on a zip-line while being shot at
  • Keep your aim steady while the floor beneath you is shaking
  • Jump through a window without getting hurt or bruised

Your Dexterity (Perception) check shows how aware and connected your character is to his or her surroundings. You may make a Dexterity (Perception) when:

  • You're trying to eavesdrop some employees' conversation behind a door
  • You want to spot hard to reach cameras before they see you
  • You try to find hard to notice routes that police might try to enter through, like vents or manholes.
  • You search for valuables your crew may have missed, like money or jewels tucked in inconspicuous corners
Sleight of Hand

Your Dexterity (Sleight of Hand) check is for attempts of legerdemain or trickery. You can use your Dexterity (Sleight of Hand) to:

  • Steal a pager from a guard's back pocket before killing him, to not alert the operator
  • Conceal the weapons and armor you are wearing under your clothes while you case a bank
  • Quickly steal a keycard from a table, without a security camera operator noticing

Your Dexterity (Stealth) check is what you use when you try to conceal yourself from others. You will make a Dexterity (Stealth) roll when you:

  • Run past a guard when they're not looking
  • Quietly go through a staff area without being noticed
  • Hide from the sight of the cops to return to the vault while your teammates are taking the heat



Your Constitution (Survival) score covers situations where you are are using your tenacity to survive in situations that would be taxing for most criminals. These include:

  • Trying to live off the land while hiding in a copse
  • Handling maximum security for as long as needed, until your crew comes to break you out
  • Doing a stake-out in a public location, and not getting in stupid trouble

You know the term "gut feeling"? Well, your Constitution (Instinct) score determines how strong your gut feelings are. It represents your experience around liars and cheats. Your ability to sense double meaning and body language. To discern others' true intentions and character. This includes:

  • Knowing if you can depend on an insider's favor or not
  • Being able to tell if your disguise has been compromised before an alarm is raised
  • Having a bad feeling about the bank the moment you arrive, sensing something out of the usual



When you look around for clues and make deductions based on those clues, you make an Intelligence (Investigation) check. You might:

  • Find where a vault was hidden in a room
  • Find out where to look for the code of a titanium door
  • Figure out what places could become choke points or which windows snipers could try to shoot you through
  • Try to find out dirt on your contractor or handler

Your Intelligence (Technology) score covers your expertise in all areas related to technical machinery, from the analogue heavy-duty stuff, to the digital computers. Examples where you'd use your Intelligence (Technology) modifier are:

  • You're trying to hack a computer or search for a password
  • You're fixing a drill that's stuck
  • You're looping a camera so that it isn't functional for a short while

When trying to discern whether your character has any idea about a specific are of knowledge, you can make a Intelligence (Information) check. This includes both general knowledge, like religion and geography, but also more specific knowledge, that your character might have thought pertinent to find out in their spare time. You make an Intelligence (Information) check when you:

  • Try to remember when a specific joint would open or close, or try to know when they restock
  • Want to find out if you know anything about a specific organisation in the criminal underworld
  • Want to see if your character remembers details about law enforcement, like how often they usually arrive at a crime scene
  • Try to see if you know anything an educated person might know about any kind of mundane, non-crime related topic, like rock bands. Or drugs.



Your Charisma (Deception) check determines whether you can convincingly hide the truth, either verbally or through your actions. This deception can encompass everything from misleading others through ambiguity to telling outright lies. Typical situations include:

  • Trying to fast-talk a guard into not noticing the assault-rifle shaped bulge in your suit pocket
  • Masking your voice when answering a pager, without making the operator suspicious
  • Pretend you are temporary staff, and need access to the company's mainframe
  • Convince a wary officer the sewer and blood stains on your shoes were actually from a paintball fight

Your Charisma (Medicine) check determines how well you can perform life-saving maneuvers both in the gunfight and outside of it. You might use Charisma (Medicine) to:

  • Revive a fallen heister and get them back on their feet
  • Perform life-saving surgery on the back of a moving train while being shot at.
  • Pass off as a totally normal nurse that definitely does not have a shotgun in her pants

Your Charisma (Performance) check determines how well you can draw and keep eyes on yourself, no matter the situation or audience. This covers:

  • Acting like a problem customer, getting the bank staff's attention while a robbery might be happening under their noses
  • Getting an entire squad of SWAT's to focus you down by acting sporadically
  • Making a great fuss in civilian attire to draw guards off your crew, who are actually in the middle of the heist

When you attempt to influence someone or a group of people with grand speeches, "good-nature", or logical argument, you may be made to make a Charisma (Persuasion) roll. You might use your Charisma (Persuasion) to:

  • Calm down a group of civillians by telling them that their money's insured.
  • Convincing a sullen employee to become an insider that could help you on a future heist
  • Making completely reasonable deals with the police to trad hostages in exchange for captured teammates before they're sent to prison

All other rules in skills apply as normal.



The prone condition is changed in the following ways, to reflect the modern way of fighting that heisters and cops commonly engage with. Any changes from the normal condition are italicised.

  • A prone creature's only movement option is to crawl (moving at half its speed, rounded up), unless it stands up (spending half its movement speed, rounded down) and thereby ends the condition.
  • The creature has disadvantage on melee weapon rolls. The creature does not have disadvantage on ranged weapon rolls
  • An attack roll against the creature has advantage if the attacker is within 5 feet of the creature. Otherwise, the attack roll has disadvantage.
  • The creature has disadvantage on Dexterity Saving Throws.


Shaken is a new condition introduced in the payday supplement, meant to simulate the effects of modern armor that heisters use.

Whenever a heister takes health damage, they roll a Strength saving throw, the DC of which is equal to 10, or half the damage taken, whichever is higher.

  • A shaken creature can't receive their armor's DR.
  • A shaken creature rolls a Strength saving throw at the start of each of their turns, the DC of which is equal to 10 + their armor's DR.
  • If a character hasn't taken any damage since the end of their last turn, they make the saving throw with advantage.

Generally, only heisters can become shaken, but certain skills may inflict the condition on law enforcement as well.

It's fine if you don't understand what this means yet, I'll explain later


Just who the fuck are these guys!?
—Law Enforcement

Heisters don't die. Their giant swinging steel balls (or soaked-wet steel clitorises) protect them from death, even when being shot through the head with Anti-material, .50 caliber rounds, they can brush it off and leave with minor cuts and scrapes. Nothing a helping hand or some choice words can't fix. Not to say death is impossible. But death in normal gameplay is not expected, and the heisters of your gang can take beatings that'd make even a Dozer think twice about messing with them.

Dropping to 0 hit points[edit]

When a heister drops to 0 hit points, they don't become unconscious, instead they drop prone, are shaken and they cannot crawl or stand up. This is called being "downed". When a heister is downed, their caught timer increases to one. This represent how much time they have left until the police finally take them away. This counter increases by one at the end of each of their turns, and when it reaches four, they are placed in custody

If this is a heister's fourth time being downed without using a doctor bag, they instead immediately go to custody when they drop to 0 hit points. Players may reset this counter by taking a long rest, or using a Doctor Bag. It is also set back to 0 whenever they get out of custody.

Helping a team-mate up is an action. The helping heister must make a DC 10 Charisma (Medicine). If they succeed, the downed heister is brought back up with 1 hit point, and their caught counter goes back to 0.


Custody is temporary confinement that law enforcement puts heisters in. Generally, heisters in custody have low odds of escaping by themselves, they need the help of their gang to bust them out. Your handler will usually tell you how to get a heister out of custody. Common ways that a heister can be taken out of custody are:

Making a deal with the police

The police has higher priorities than killing the whole gang, and with some negotiating between either the handler and police, or with one of the heisters themselves, they can arrange to free their partner without confiscating any of their goods. The most common deal that the police will make is trading the heister in custody for a hostage. But a smart officer might start making more extreme and unsavory deals with the gang, requiring more hostages, or even pieces of equipment for their team-mate. Only the shrewdest and bravest police agents would go against their word when making deals with the heisters. Common criminals are one thing, but getting on the shitlist of the payday gang is a one-way ticket to early retirement.

The hard way out

Sometimes, the cops want nothing to do with you, sometimes you don't have anything they'd want. Sometimes that's just how it is. In some cases, the only way to get a heister out of custody is to simply bust them out. This can occur in a number of ways, from abandoning your current heist to chase the cops and find the car or armored vehicle that's holding your team-mate, or having to come up with a whole new heist that involves busting him out of a prison facility, guns blazing.

No tools needed[edit]

Heisters do not have tools. Well, they do have tools. They do not have tools as they are described in base fifth edition rules. If a heister has the ability to do something, it is assumed he either doesn't need any specialized tools to do it (Examples: kicking down a door, hacking a computer, helping a team-mate up), or it is assumed he has the tools on him (heisters with abilities to pick locks are assumed to have appropriate tools on them, same goes for characters proficient in technology) Heisters roll the appropiate ability scores, and add their proficiencies if the action corresponded to a skill they are proficient in.

Not that tools can't exist or that they're never important, just that heisters don't normally need tool kits, and they do not receive, nor use tool proficiencies.

Fast Hands[edit]

Something common to all heisters is incredibly fast hands. This most shows when they're swiping cash, and still, it's an useful ability when in the midst of frantic combat.

All player characters can Stow a weapon and draw out another one as part of a single Interact with object action.

Carrying Objects[edit]

That's all of 'em! Let's get out of here!
Weight Examples
0 Loose Jewelry, Coke, Rolled-up Paintings
1 Sweet, Sweet, Franklins, Artillery Shells, Mechanical Parts
2 Valuable Wine, Assault Rifles
3 Gold ingots, Entire Servers, A pig, Heavy Mechanical Parts
4 Entire Safes
5 Ancient Artifacts, Shit you shouldn't be carrying,
a Nuclear Warhead

As heisters, your primary job is to get valuables out of protected areas. This isn't as glamouros as it seems. A large part of your job is slowly moving heavy objects from one place to another.

First things first, packing valuables takes an action. You have enough bags to never worry about running out. Afterwards you can pick a bag off the ground with your interact with object free action. You can only carry one bag at a time.

Bags are heavy, and you can't properly move when carrying them. All bags have a Weight. Your speed is reduced by 5 ft. for each point of weight a bag has. If your speed would be reduced to 0 in this way, you cannot carry the bag, and can only move it by using your actions to pull or push it 5 ft. at a time.

You can use a bonus action to throw a bag you are carrying. If you do, make a Strength (Athletics) check, equal to 10 + double the bag's Weight. If you fail, you may throw the bag as far as your movement speed while carrying it. If you succeed, you may throw it twice as far. If you throw or leave a bag on the ground, your speed rises back to normal, and you can the gained movement in the same turn. Be careful, cops won't leave material sitting unattended, and if they confiscate something, it's not easy to get it back.

Properly knowing when to carry or throw bags around is what separates real heisters from petty crooks. A real proffessional knows when it's time to throw around priceless artifacts to save time. Example:

Chains is carrying a bag of Gold. As most heisters, his walk speed is 30 feet. Gold has a weight of 3, reducing his speed by 3 times 5, or 15 feet. Thus, his speed is only 15 feet while he is carrying the gold. He uses his action to blast a policeman in the chest with his shotgun, then moves 15 feet. He decides to use his bonus action to throw the bag, then fails his Strength (Athletics) roll, and can only throw the bag out to 15 feet. He throws it in the direction he wishes to move. His speed then rises to 30 feet, and gains 15 feet of movement he can use in that turn. He moves those 15 feet to reach the bag he just threw, and uses the "interact with object" action to pick it off the ground again. Thus, Chains used all of his actions to move the bag (and himself) farther than he would have, had he just carried it. Be like Chains, kids. Except the part where he failed the strength check like a wimp.

The Almighty Dollar[edit]

Enough of these, and all your dreams'll come true. Savor it for a while... Alright, done? Because I got another job with your names on it.
Total Offshore Level
0 1
3,000$ 2
9,000$ 3
27,000$ 4
65,000$ 5
140,000$ 6
230,000$ 7
340,000$ 8
480,000$ 9
640,000$ 10
850,000$ 11
1,000,000$ 12
1,200,000$ 13
1,400,000$ 14
1,650,000$ 15
1,950,000$ 16
2,250,000$ 17
2,650,000$ 18
3,050,000$ 19
3,550,000$ 20

The characters in the Payday Supplement do not use gold, silver, or copper coins. They make their transactions with the almighty American Dollar. And they're not low-tier crooks who risk themselves for pennies. A dollar is a low amount in the eyes of a payday characters, they deal in thousands and millions.

Whenever heisters receive payment from a heist, the money is split (in a ratio determined by the handler) between their bank accounts, and the gang's offshore account.

All in your hands: Personal Account[edit]

Your personal account is money that is yours, it's clean and cop-free, thank your handler for that. You can use it on whatever strikes your fancy. Whether that's a new spraypaint for your mask, a new sight for your secondary, or buying a massive fuck-off solid gold table to snort cocaine off, all up to you.

Worth of a Criminal: The Offshore Account[edit]

Most money you make is unfortunately deemed "illegal" by some balding fuck in a cheap suit on the other side of the continent. And unfortunately, you can't use or spend it directly. Fortunately, your handler knows how to take care of the money so that the cops won't notice, so he quietly collects and keeps all of it. This money gets collected in a bank account overseas, usually on a remote, legally underdeveloped island. Offshore money is what covers things like daily livings and maintaining your operation. Your handler may let you use offshore cash.

The amount of offshore cash you make still has another very important use though, in the underworld, the cash you make is the most concrete proof of your skills. The more off-shore you've earned, the higher your credentials.

Your Total Offshore Earned is your Experience so while it's irritating you can't buy anything with it, it's still valuable to you. You don't need to spend offshore to buy levels, and your handler spending the money from the Offshore account doesn't mean you lose levels. If you earn money in the offshore account, it counts to your Total Offshore Earned. Get enough Offshore and you level up. Simple as that.

I know that was a lot to take in, I'm sorry. Don't worry tough, you can check back here anytime, get acquainted at your own pace. Now, before we start talking about the fun stuff, I want to get us on the same page.

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