Background-Based Skills (3.5e Variant Rule)
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Rather than the usual skill system currently used in D&D, this system allows you to take wide-reaching backgrounds that allow you to use various skills.
Upon character creation, every creature gets 8 background points to invest in various backgrounds ranging anywhere from "assassin" to "wilderness trekker" to "street rat", up to a maximum of 5 in any background.
When a skill check would normally be called for, rather than rolling a specific skill, the DM decides what ability score is appropriate. The player then rolls 1d20 + HD + appropriate ability modifier + miscellaneous + background points invested (if applicable, though only the highest-invested background applies).
The player may attempt to convince the DM how or why a specific background might be applicable to any specific check rolled, though the DM, as always, has the final call whether any specific background may be used.
Note: Miscellaneous modifiers include racial bonuses, armor check penalties, and bonuses provided by feats, among others. If, for example, a character got a miscellaneous +2 bonus to Spot checks, they would get the bonus only when attempting to spot something regardless whether or not they were able to use any background with it.
Rich History [General]
Your background is deeper and richer than you originally realized.Benefit: You gain an additional 3 background points with which to increase your current backgrounds, or take completely new backgrounds. This may not increase any one background to more than a total of 7 points invested.
Special: This feat may be taken multiple times, each time gaining an additional 3 background points.