Rule Changes

by Bamstacks

Search GM Binder Visit User Profile

The Players Handbook

The Bamstacks Variant

Chapter 4: personality and background


(page 125) Inspiration is a rule the game master can use to reward you for playing your character in a way that’s true to his or her personality traits, ideal, bond, and flaw. By using inspiration, you can draw on your personality trait of compassion for the downtrodden to give you an edge in negotiating with the Beggar Prince. Or inspiration can let you call on your bond to the defense of your home village to push past the effect of a spell that has been laid on you.

Gaining Inspiration

Your DM can choose to give you inspiration for a variety of reasons. Typically, DMs award it when you play out your personality traits, give in to the drawbacks presented by a flaw or bond, and otherwise portray your character in a compelling way. Your DM will tell you how you can earn inspiration in the game.

You can stockpile multiple Inspirations, but any unused Inspirations expire at the end of any given session.

Using Inspiration

When you gain inspiration, you are awarded a d12. You can roll the die and add the number rolled to one ability check, attack roll, or saving throw you make. You can wait until after you roll the d20 before deciding to use the Inspiration die, but you must decide before the DM says whether the roll succeeds or fails. Once the Inspiration die is rolled, it is lost.

The DM may also decide to allow inspiration to be used in alternative ways to power amazing moments or in specific ways relevant to classes/subclasses.

Chapter 5: Equipment

Martial Melee Weapons
Weapon Name Cost Damage Weight Properties
Lance 10 gp 1d12 Piercing 6 lb. Two-Handed, Reach, Special
Bomb 2 sp 1d10 fire 1 lb. Finesse, special, thrown (range 30/60)
Brass Knuckles 1 gp 1d4 Bludgeoning 1 lb. Light, unarmed
Katar 3 gp 1d4 Piercing 3 lb. Light, unarmed
Knuckle Knives 10 gp 1d4 Slashing 2 lb. Light, unarmed
Martial Ranged Weapons
Weapon Name Cost Damage Weight Properties
Net 1 gp - 3 lb. Special, thrown (range 5/15)

Lance. You have disadvantage when you use a lance to attack a target within 5 feet of you. Also, you may wield a lance in one hand when you are mounted.

Net. When making a ranged attack with a net within the weapon's short range, you do not have disadvantage.

Weapon Properties

Unarmed. When you make an unarmed attack you can choose to deal the damage of this weapon instead of your normal unarmed attack damage.

Bomb. Bombs are martial ranged weapons. When a bomb hits a target, it explodes in a 5-foot radius and is destroyed. The bomb can be thrown at an unoccupied space within its range. Each creature other than the target within the blast radius must succeed on a DC 11 Dexterity saving throw, taking half the damage rolled on a failed save or no damage on a successful one.

Additionally, as a bonus action, you can empty some of the bomb’s explosive material to permanently remove the blast radius from this bomb, dealing damage only to the bomb’s target.

Tool Properties

Astrologer's Tools. You can use astrologer's tools in the following ways:

Arcana. Your knowledge of the cosmos helps you answer questions about other planes.

Insight. You can use your astrologer's tools to create a natal chart for a creature in 10 minutes. This can help you understand them better.

Nature. You can accurately predict the weather for the next 24 hours when you study the night sky.

Name Cost Weight Description
Embalmer's Tools 10 gp 4 lb Embalmer’s tools include all the instruments, chemicals, and perfumes necessary to embalm the dead. Proficiency with this kit lets you add your proficiency bonus to any ability checks you make to embalm or preserve a body.
Astrologer's Tools 30 gp 5 lb Astrologer's tools include a star chart, an astrolabe, a compass, calipers, a quill, ink, and parchment.

Chapter 6: Customization Options


Class Features

Extra Attack

If you have levels in more than once class or subclass that offers the Extra Attack class feature, the levels of these classes add together for the purposes of gaining this feature. The feature is always gained when your total level in all classes reaches the highest level that any class you gain levels in gains the feature. Extra Attack gained through multiclassing is always the simplest version of the feature, described below:

"You can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn."

Your levels from each class are not added together for the purposes of gaining additional extra attacks (as the fighter's version of Extra Attack provides), or special versions of Extra Attack, like that gained by Bladesinger Wizards, unless multiple classes gain the same special version of Extra Attack, in which case that special version of Extra Attack is gained when the combined levels in these classes reaches the highest level any of the classes gain that version of the feature.

The warlock's eldritch invocation Thirsting Blade doesn't give you additional attacks if you also have Extra Attack.

For example, a ranger 3/bladesinger 2 would not have extra attack, as bladesingers get Extra Attack at level 6. A ranger 3/bladesinger 3 would gain Extra Attack, the simplest version. To gain the bladesinger's special Extra Attack, you would have to wait until you achieved 6 levels in bladesinger.


If you gain the Evasion class feature from more than one class, the levels of these classes add together. Whenever you multiclass two classes that provide the Evasion feature, you may add your levels in each of these classes together for the purposes of gaining this feature. You gain the feature at the same point as the class who would get it last would gain it. For example, a Rogue/Monk multiclass would get Evasion at level 7, regardless of how many levels in each class you have.

Class Proficiency Bonus

When you multiclass, you gain a new proficiency bonus value for each class you have levels in. This proficiency bonus value is determined by what your proficiency bonus would be if only taking your levels in that class into account. Features may refer to your class proficiency bonus, which will refer to this value, not your overall proficiency bonus. Your regular proficiency bonus remains unchanged if multiclassed.

A class proficiency bonus can be determined by taking your levels in the class and referring to the proficiency bonus column of the class table for that level.

For example, while an Artificer 5/Wizard 10 would have a +5 proficiency bonus, an Artificer class feature that refers to, for example, a feature that has a number of uses equal to your artificer proficiency bonus, would have 3 uses.

Chapter 7: Using Ability Scores

Advantage and Disadvantage

The following text replaces the 2nd paragraph of this section of the Player's Handbook

If multiple situations affect a roll and each one grants advantage or imposes disadvantage on it, you don't roll more than one additional d20. If two favorable situations grant advantage, for example, you still roll only one additional d20. However, having more than one source of advantage or disadvantage grants additional benefits/penalties, as listed in the tables below. Consult the Attack Rolls table if making an attack roll, and consult the Saving Throws and Ability Checks table is making one of those checks. If the total amount of stacked advantage or disadvantage exceeds the maximum value listed on the table, the result will be as if they had the listed maximum amount of advantage/disadvantage.

Attack Rolls

Adv Count Effect
1 Best of two rolls
2 Best of two rolls with +2 to hit, +1 Critical range
3 Best of two rolls with +5 to hit, +2 Critical range
4 Automatic Hit. Make an attack roll, +4 Critical range.
5 Automatic Critical
Adv Count Effect
-1 Worst of two rolls
-2 Worst of two rolls with -2 to hit
-3 Worst of two rolls with -5 to hit
-4 Automatic Miss

Saving Throws and Ability Checks

Adv Count Effect
1 Best of two rolls
2 Best of two rolls, +2 to roll
3 Best of two rolls, +5 to roll
4 Automatic Success
Adv Count Effect
-1 Worst of two rolls
-2 Worst of two rolls, -2 to roll
-3 Worst of two rolls, -5 to roll
-4 Automatic Failure

Chapter 8: Adventuring


Special Types of Movement


Your Strength determines how far you can jump.

Long Jump. When you make a long jump, you cover a number of feet up to your Strength score if you move at least 10 feet on foot immediately before the jump. When you make a standing long jump, you can leap only half that distance. Either way, each foot you clear on the jump costs a foot of movement.

This rule assumes that the height of your jump doesn't matter, such as a jump across a stream or chasm. At your DM's option, you must succeed on a DC 10 Strength (Athletics) check to clear a low obstacle (no taller than a quarter of the jump's distance), such as a hedge or low wall. Otherwise. you hit it.

When you land in difficult terrain. you must succeed on a DC 10 Dexterity (Acrobatics) check to land on your feet. Otherwise, you land prone.

High Jump. When you make a high jump, you leap into the air a number of feet equal to 3 + your Strength modifier if you move at least 10 feet on foot immediately before the jump. When you make a standing high jump, you can jump only half that distance. Either way, each foot you clear upwards on the jump costs a foot of movement. When you make a jump, you can choose to make an Athletics check to extend yourself, after which you take the result of the roll, divide it by 5 rounded down, and add the result to the height you clear. If you roll a 1 on this check, you strain your muscles too much, add no distance to your jump, and suffer disadvantage on Athletics checks for 1 minute.

As part of the high jump, you can move horizontally 1 foot for every 2 feet you jump vertically.

You can extend your arms half your height above yourself during the jump. Thus, you can reach above you a distance equal to the height of the jump plus 1.5 times your height.

If you drop more than the height of your initial upwards jump, you fall, otherwise you land on your feet.


Short Rest

(page 186) A short rest is a period of downtime, at least 10 minutes long, during which a character does nothing more strenuous than eating, drinking, reading, and tending to wounds.

A character can spend one or more Hit Dice at the end of a short rest, up to the character’s maximum number of Hit Dice, which is equal to the character’s level. For each Hit Die spent in this way, the player rolls the die and adds the character’s Constitution modifier to it. The character regains hit points equal to the total (minimum of 0). The player can decide to spend an additional Hit Die after each roll. A character regains their Hit Dice upon finishing a long rest, as explained below.

You may take up to two short rests before completing a long rest.

Long Rest

A long rest is a period of extended downtime, at least 8 hours long, during which a character sleeps for at least 6 hours and performs no more than 2 hours of light activity, such as reading, talking, eating, or standing watch. If the rest is interrupted by a period of strenuous activity — at least 1 hour of walking, fighting, casting spells, or similar adventuring activity — the characters must begin the rest again to gain any benefit from it.

At the end of a long rest, a character regains all lost hit points and one level of exhaustion if they have any. Depending on the quality of accomodations, the character may regain different amounts of their hit dice. If the character sleeps in a safe environment in a bed, they regain all hit dice. If in an unsafe environment and under the stress of taking watch, they will regain only half of their maximum hit dice.

A character can't benefit from more than one long rest in a 24-hour period, and a character must have at least 1 hit point at the start of the rest to gain its benefits.

Chapter 9: Combat

Dropping to 0 hit points

(page 197) When you drop to 0 hit points, you either die outright or fall Unconscious, as explained in the following sections.

Falling Unconscious

If damage reduces you to 0 hit points and fails to kill you, you fall Unconscious. This unconsciousness ends if you regain any hit points.

Falling Unconscious is taxing on a character, whenever you fall Unconscious due to falling to 0 hit points, you gain one level of Exhaustion.

Mounted Combat

Mounting and dismounting

(page 198) Once during your move, you can mount a creature that is within 5 feet of you or dismount. Doing so costs 15 feet of movement. Therefore, you can’t mount it if you don’t have 15 feet of movement left or if your speed is 0.

While mounted, you occupy the center-most space in the creature's space. if the center of the creature's space is an intersection, you occupy all spaces which touch that intersection. If mounting a creature would require you to move more than 5 feet, you must provide any movement necessary.

If an effect moves your mount against its will while you’re on it, you must succeed on a DC 10 Dexterity saving throw or fall off the mount, landing prone in a space within 5 feet of it. If you’re knocked prone while mounted, you must make the same saving throw.

If your mount is knocked prone, you can use your reaction to dismount it as it falls and land on your feet. Otherwise, you are dismounted and fall prone in a space within 5 feet it.

Actions in Combat


You can lend your aid to another creature in the completion of a task. When you take the Help action, the creature you aid gains advantage on the next ability check it makes to perform the task you are helping with, provided that it makes the check before the start of your next turn. In order to help a creature, you must be at least proficient with the skill the helped creature is attempting. If you have Expertise, you can give the helped creature two levels of advantage.

Free object interaction

You can use your object interaction to unsheathe or sheathe two weapons, as long as both of your hands are available to do so.

Making an Attack

Two-Weapon Fighting

When you take the Attack action and attack with a light melee weapon that you're holding in one hand, you can attack with a different light melee weapon that you're holding in the other hand as part of the same action.

You don't add your ability modifier to the damage of the second light weapon, unless that modifier is negative.

If either weapon has the thrown property, you can throw the weapon, instead of making a melee attack with it.

Damage and Healing

Critical Hits

When you score a critical hit, you deal additional damage against the target, in addition to the attack's normal damage. The additional damage is equal to the maximum roll of all of of the attack's damage dice.

For example, if you score a critical hit with a dagger, roll 1d4 for the damage die for the dagger, and then add 4, the maximum result of a d4, and then add your relevant ability modifier. If the attack involves other damage dice, such as from the rogue's Sneak Attack feature, you add the maximum result of those dice as well.

Critical Range

By default, any attack roll lands a critical hit on a d20 result of 20. You therefore have a critical range of 1, as there is 1 result on the d20 which results in a critical hit. If a feature says that your critical range is increased, you therefore land a critical hit on one more result on the d20, descending downwards from 20.

For example, with a critical range of 2, you would land a critical hit on a 19 or 20 on the d20. With a critical range of 4, it would be a result of 17-20. Consult the following table for an easy reference guide:

Critical Range d20 Result Criticals
1 20
2 19-20
3 18-20
4 17-20
5 16-20

The Order of Combat

The rules for surprise, hiding, and obscurement are confusing and spread across several chapters of the PHB, as well as across several feats and races. Rules for how these all work, and how they will work at my tables, have been clarified and brought together here.

Combat Step by Step

1. Determine Surprise. The DM determines whether anyone involved in the combat encounter is surprised.
2. Establish Positions. The DM decides where all the characters and monsters are located. Given the adventurers' marching order and their stated positions in the room or other location, the DM figures out where the adversaries are-how far away and in what direction.
3. Roll initiative. Everyone involved in the combat encounter rolls initiative, determining the order of combatants' turns.
4. Take turns. Each participant in the battle takes a turn in initiative order.
5. Begin the next round. When everyone involved in the combat has had a turn, the round ends. Repeat step 4 until the fighting stops.


A band of adventurers sneaks up on a bandit camp, springing from the trees to attack them. A gelatinous cube glides down a dungeon passage, unnoticed by the adventurers until the cube engulfs one of them. In these situations, one side of the battle gains surprise over the other.

When combat starts, surprise is the first thing that needs to be resolved. If all creatures on one side attempt to be stealthy, surprise might occur, otherwise surprise does not occur. If a creature tries to be stealthy, it must be hiding or try to hide. See the hiding rules for the conditions required to hide. If all creatures on one side are hiding and have higher Dexterity (Stealth) checks than a creature on the opposing side's passive Wisdom (Perception) score, that creature on the opposing side does not notice the threat and is surprised.

If you're surprised, you can't move or take an action on your first turn of the combat, and you can't take reactions until that turn ends. A member of a group can be surprised even if the other members aren't.


Taken and modified from Chapter 7's Hiding Rules

When you try to hide, make a Dexterity (Stealth) check. Until you are discovered or stop hiding, that check's total is contested by the Wisdom (Perception) check of any creature that actively searches for signs of your presence, or by the passive perception if the creatures are not actively searching.

In order to hide, you must be heavily obscured. If a creature can see you clearly, you can't hide from them, and you give away your position if you make noise, such as shouting a warning or knocking over a vase. An invisible creature can always try to hide. Signs of its passage may still be noticed, and it does have to stay quiet.

In combat, most creatures stay alert for signs of danger all around, so if you come out of hiding and approach a creature, it usually sees you, except if the creature is otherwise distracted, allowing you to gain advantage on the attack roll before you are seen.


Taken and modified from Chapter 8

A given area might be lightly or heavily obscured. In a lightly obscured area, such as dim light, patchy fog, or moderate foliage, creatures have disadvantage on Wisdom (Perception) checks that rely on sight.

A heavily obscured area -- such as darkness, opaque fog, or dense foliage -- blocks vision entirely. A creature effectively suffers from the Blinded condition when trying to see something in that area.

The presence or absence of light in an environment creates three categories of illumination: bright light, dim light, or darkness.

Chater 10: Spellcasting


(page 203)

A spell's components are the physical requirements you must meet in order to cast it. Each spell's description indicates whether it requires verbal (V), somatic (S), or material (M) components. If you can't provide one or more of a spell's components, you are unable to cast the spell.

verbal (v)

Most spells require the chanting of mystic words. The words themselves aren't the source of the spell's power; rather, the particular combination of sounds, with specific pitch and resonance, sets the threads of magic in motion. Thus, a character who is gagged or in an area of silence, such as one created by the silence spell, can't cast a spell with a verbal component.

Somatic (S)

Spellcasting gestures might include a forceful gesticulation or an intricate set of gestures. If a spell requires a somatic component, the caster must have free use of at least one hand to perform these gestures. A caster may perform a somatic component for a spell if they are holding an applicable spellcasting focus for the class or subclass that provided the spell.

material (m)

Casting some spells requires particular objects, specified in parentheses in the component entry. A character can use a component pouch or a spellcasting focus (found in chapter 5) in place of the components specified for a spell. But if a cost is indicated for a component, a character must have that specific component before they can cast the spell.

If a spell states that a material component is consumed by the spell, the caster must provide this component for each casting of the spell.

A spellcaster must have a hand free to access or hold these components, but it can be the same hand that he or she uses to perform somatic components.

Identifying Spells and their Effects

These rule changes replace the guidance found in Xanathar's Guide to Everything, page 85

Identifying spells and their effects can be difficult, especially if one only has a precious 6 seconds to see a spell being cast and identify it. A creature must use their reaction, which can be part of the same reaction they would use to cast counterspell or another similar spell, effect, or feature, to try to identify a spell. If a creature is trying to identify a spell as it is being cast, the DC equals 15 + twice the spell's level (Cantrips count as 0th level spells).

If the creature knows the spell, has it prepared, or has it in their spellbook, the DC to identify the spell is reduced by 5.

If a creature is trying to identify a spell or its effect not in the flurry of combat, the DC is instead 10 + twice the spell's level.

You learn certain information about the spell depending on how close you get to the required DC to identify it, described below:

Amount below DC Information Known
2 Spell Level, Spell School, Spell Duration, Range
5 Spell School, Spell Duration, Range
8 Spell School



  • A blinded creature can't see and automatically fails any ability check that requires sight.
  • Attack rolls against the creature by creatures who can see the blinded creature have advantage, and the creature's attack rolls have disadvantage, regardless of other sources of advantage or disadvantage.


  • This condition is measured in levels. An effect can give a creature one or more levels of exhaustion, as specified in the effect’s description. Exhaustion levels will stack on top of one another, increasing the level accordingly. The level of exhaustion of a creature is labeled as Exhaustion (level). For example, a creature with two levels of exhaustion has Exhaustion (2).
  • The creature will suffer a penalty to all ability checks, attack rolls, and saving throws equal to the level of exhaustion.
  • The creature will have its exhaustion level reduced by one when it finishes a Long Rest.
  • The creature dies if it gains Exhaustion (6).


  • A frightened creature has disadvantage on ability checks and attack rolls while the source of its fear is within line of sight.
  • The creature can't knowingly move closer to the source of its fear.


  • An invisible creature is impossible to see without the aid of magic or a special sense. For the purpose of hiding, the creature is heavily obscured. The creature's location can be detected by any noise it makes or any tracks it leaves.
  • Attack rolls against the creature by creatures who can't see it have disadvantage, and the creature's attack rolls against creatures it can see but who can't see them have advantage.


  • A slowed creature has its speed halved, takes a -2 penalty to AC and Dexterity saving throws, and can’t take reactions.
  • On its turn, the creature can’t make more than one melee or ranged attack during its turn.
  • If the creature attempts to cast a spell with a casting time of 1 Action, roll a d20. On an 11 or higher, the spell doesn’t take effect until the creature’s next turn, and the creature must use its action on that turn to complete the spell. If it can’t, the spell is wasted.

Assorted Rulings

These are a collection of specific rulings where I disagree with the designers on their rulings on the issue, so I have specified how I rule them below.

Life Cleric and Goodberry

The Life Cleric's Disciple of Life feature does not work with the goodberry spell at my tables. It will work with healing spirit and other spells like it.

The difference being, does the spell or its effects directly heal? Or do they create objects which heal if they are eaten? If the former, then Disciple of Life applies; if not, it doesn't.

Alchemist's Fire

Crawford has said that it deals 1d4+ability modifier damage on a hit, and also on subsequent rounds. This is very strange. If you want to use Alchemist's Fire, it will deal the 1d4+ability modifier damage for an improvised weapon on a hit, and the 1d4 fire damage on each of its turns.

Twinned Spell & Dragon's Breath

Crawford has ruled that twinned spell can't apply to dragon's breath because the breath can target multiple enemies. This is bad in my opinion because the spell itself only has one target, and that's the only thing twinned spell should care about. So you will be able to twin dragon's breath and similar spells at my table.


This document was lovingly created using GM Binder.

If you would like to support the GM Binder developers, consider joining our Patreon community.