Optional Rules

The following are various optional rules the DM might consider for a Hyborian Age campaign:

The Role of the Cleric

Suggested by Antonio Eleuteri.

I think that the cleric as a spellcasting class is not very appropriate for an Hyborian Age campaign. I see the role of the cleric more as a political one, without true spellcasting powers (considering that the gods of the Hyborian Age are a difficult lot to deal with!). I liked the concept described by Curtis Scott in GURPS Conan. How could it be done in D&D? I think that it could be handled by a Prestige class with a small number of levels (5 would be appropriate), in which the powers acquired are more mundane (e.g. access to the coffers of the temple, the capability to command a number of people, perhaps one or two low level spell effects [like blessings and such] and a bonus to Strength as a token of "divine favor").

Fear Statistic

Suggested by Antonio Eleuteri.

I liked very much the "Fear Statistic" game mechanic that David Cook introduced in his modules CB1 and CB2. I think a good way to assign this statistic in D&D is by using the CR of a character or creature and using it as a Fear Statistic (FS). This would be used to make a Will save vs a DC of, for example, 10 + FS (Call it a Fear Roll). I would suggest making this check only for Monstrous creatures, Magical Beasts and perhaps Beasts; in general for all unnatural or uncommon creatures. This same concept could be applied to the casting of spells. A seemingly innocent spellcaster, which in a normal situation could pass for a normal human, upon casting a spell whose effects are visible could force a Fear Roll vs a DC of, for example, 10 + Spellcaster level.

Hero Points

Suggested by Antonio Eleuteri.

Also from the modules CB1 and CB2, the use of a pool of points to perform extraordinary acts (we sometimes see Conan perform actions that would be incredible even for D&D standards!). It is not clear to me how Cook decided on the quantity of points to assign, however I think it would be nice to give it a thought.