# Re: (TFT) TFT: Expert Weapon Talents

```>I've had my suspicions that Expert Swordsman and similar talents
>(at http://www.reese.org/tft/Combat.htm) are unbalanced, so I
>did some playtesting.  Testing indicates these talents are
>probably highly unbalanced compared to a similar character
>without such a talent.
>   To do the playtest I designed two similar 35-point fighters.
>The normal fighter: ST 12, DX 15(13), IQ 8, MA 8, HS 3, broadsword
>(2d), small shield, leather armor.  The fighter with Expert
>Swordsman: ST 10, DX 15(13), IQ 10, MA 8, HS 3, cutlass (2d), small
>shield, leather armor.  Both characters purposely have the same
>adjDX.  Also note that both do the same amount of damage with their
>weapon.
>   I ran both fighters against each other one-on-one for 24 battles.
>The score was 20 to 4 in the expert swordsman's favor . . .  a 5:1
>ratio!

Lessee ... the odds of rolling a 13 or less on 4 dice is 575/1296
whereas the odds of rolling a 13 or less on 3 dice is 181/216.
So the Expert Swordsman does, on average, 5 points of damage each
time he hits (not exactly right, but for the purposes of this
discussion it will do), so that means his expected damage delivered
is (5*181)/216 = 4.19 points per turn.   The Novice does 7-2=5 pts
on each hit, so his expected damage is (5*575)/1296 = 2.22 per turn.

The Expert has a 10 ST, so 10 / 2.22 = 4.50 turns
The Novice has a 12 ST, so 12 / 4.19 = 2.86 turns

In order for the Novice to equal the Expert, the Novice must be
able to do approximately as much damage as the Expert, which in
this case means he has to hit more often.  10.0/2.86 = 3.50.  Our
Novice must be able to deal out an expected 3.5 points of damage
each turn.  (3.5*1296)/5.0 = 907.2, so that means our novice must
roll 17 or less on a 4d6 roll in order to hit the target!  In
Leather Armor!  And still be able to wield a broadsword!!

It can't be done.

You know, I've been thinking about the TFT method of adding or
subtracting a D6 to represent the increased or relaxed difficulty
of achieving a task and the more I think about it, the more I

To represent levels of increased difficulty:

Take a normal 3d6 roll and add an extra die for each level of
difficulty.  Roll the dice and then read the total of the 3
HIGHEST dies.  So for two levels of increased difficulty, roll
5 dice and take the highest 3.

To represent levels of relaxed difficulty:

Take a normal 3d6 roll and add an extra die for each level of
difficulty.  Roll the dice and then read the total of the 3
LOWEST dice.  So for 1 level of relaxed difficulty, roll 4
dice and take the lowest 3.

I believe this method represents the law of diminished returns far
better than the "add/subtract a d6" method.

Dan

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