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(TFT) AD&D Conversion take 3, character conversion
If I can add to this thread, a while ago I wrote an article about converting
characters from AD&D to TFT for my campaign. It was supposed to have
monster conversion as well, but I mostly used Steve Jackson's Space Gamer
article, so I never wrote up that part. I'm going to try Rod's system that
was just posted to see how the creatures compare, but in the meantime,
here's my article on character conversion. Let me know what you think.
(Note: this was origionally intended for publication in Rick Smith's 'Goblin
Keep' TFT APA magazine, and my still end up there one day.)
Converting D&D Characters to TFT
By Matt Fraser
As much as TFT players like myself hate to admit it, many of us got our
role-playing start in D&D. If you're like me, this means that you have a
wealth of old D&D materials such as adventures and modules as well as
reference books such as the various Monster Manuals. The number of
creatures and monsters currently published in the TFT system is quite
limited, so to ignore these existing resources seems like a waste. I
recently undertook the task of converting a series of old D&D modules into
TFT for play with my local gaming group. For these two reasons, I decided
to come up with a systematic way to convert characters and monsters into a
format compatible with the TFT system. This article details the conversion
of PC races from AD&D to TFT. Hopefully others will also benefit from my
A separate system is used for the conversion of races which use the six D&D
attributes (I have ignored the optional 'Comeliness' attribute.) This is
necessary because in D&D, monsters are handled differently than PC races.
The fixed attributes in D&D give characters with high scores major
advantages over characters without them. For this reason, characters are
given bonuses to the appropriate TFT stat or, in the case of attributes that
do not translate well, given talents at reduced cost. Note that I use Rick
Smith's superscript system ("Other Uses for Experience in TFT") for these
conversions, but I have attempted to set things up so they can be easily
ignored. D&D is also a level and class based system whereas TFT is talent
and attribute based. I have made a rough approximation between levels and
stats, but when choosing talents, keep in mind the class of the D&D
character and try to pick the appropriate initial talents. If you use
non-weapon proficiencies, these can be picked up with any remaining memory
slots after class appropriate skills have been picked. I'm not very
familiar with the 2nd edition D&D rules, but hopefully these conversions are
approximate enough that no major discrepancies will occur.
Note: There is no equivalent to alignment in TFT, but it does give a guide
as to how a character will behave. The character's alignment can be used as
a guide for roleplaying that character. The only measurable effect might be
on the Honesty characteristic. A guideline might be: Good aligned
characters would have hone Honesties from 7 to 12 depending where they fit
between Chaotic and Lawful; Evil characters will have honesties that vary
from 2 to 7.
In all cases, remember that the only real distinction between classes in
TFT is Wizard or non-wizard, so roleplaying is the most important way of
distinguishing classes in TFT. If the character was a Ranger in D&D,
roleplay them that way - have them pickup talents that are appropriate to
that class. Multiclassed characters are easy in TFT, just pick appropriate
talents. Multiclassed wizards go by the normal TFT wizard rules for picking
up non-wizard talents and must use silver weapons and armor.
The D&D classes convert to their logical TFT equivalent with a few
exceptions: Illusionists would simply be wizards with mostly illusion type
spells (the distinction becomes one of roleplaying.)
Many FM's have special rules for Clerics, and these can be used along with
the Priest type talents.
Druids become Clerics with a focus on nature (a roleplaying distinction again.)
Paladins are fighters with the clerical talents and maybe a few spells.
In D&D abilities above 14 and below 7 receive bonuses or penalties
respectively that can make a character much better (or worse) than apparent
for their level. I've found that the best way to handle this is to give
bonuses to the characters at startup, once their initial 32 attributes have
been distributed. All of these bonuses are for abilities above a score of
14. At 19 and above, stats should be given at 1 stat per point for the
appropriate ability (ie. a character with 20 Intelligence would get +2 IQ on
top of the bonuses detailed
below.) In cases where there is a choice, the GM or player should make the
decision based upon what is most appropriate for that character. For
ability scores below 7, subtracting stats at the exchange rates given should
work for most abilities.
Stat bonuses for exceptional stats:
1 ST per 2 points or 1 Power per point.
1 Power per category (ie 1-50, 51-75, ...)
1 IQ per 2 points or 1 Memory per point.
1 DX per 2 points or 1 Speed per point.
1 ST per 2 points or 1 Fatigue per point.
At 16 Wisdom get Acolyte for 1/2 memory.
At 18 Wisdom get Priest talent for 1 less memory.
(All bonuses are cumulative.)
Charisma + 2 = sum of Appearance and Friendliness characteristics.
At 15 get Charisma talent for 1 less memory; max. Appearance or
Friendliness is 11.
At 16 get +1 reaction with own race.
At 17 max Appearance or Friendliness is 12
At 18 get Sex Appeal or New Followers for 1 less memory.
Characters start from 30 stats (hence 0 level characters are 30 attributes)
and add stats as follows:
2 stats per level for levels 1-10.
1 stat per level for levels 11-20.
1 stat per 2 levels for levels >20.
The classes advance at different rates in D&D, but rather that worry about
these details, I've chosen this simpler system. Most classes do advance at
a similar rate after 9th level anyway. Note that for normal characters,
this equates 10th level characters to an attribute total of 50 and 20th
level characters to an attribute total of 60. Stats can be distributed
however the player or GM wishes or traded into superscripts at a rate of 1
stat = 3 superscripts.
Most D&D PC races have an equivalent in TFT and I suggest using the
appropriate TFT race. However, if the adventures you plan to use depend upon
D&D racial characteristics, it might be necessary to carry these special
abilities over. The D&D races tend to have significant powers compared to
those in TFT and these advantages were balanced with caps on the levels to
which they could progress in their class. Since limits like this do not fit
in the TFT system, it might be better to limit the racial abilities
somewhat. Races which do not exist in TFT can easily be transferred over
with some consideration of how to translate their racial abilities.
Example of character conversion:
Bob, 5th level 1/2-Elf Fighter
D&D Ability Base TFT 5th level = Final (41.66)
Abilities bonuses scores (30) +10 stats
Str.: 16 +2 power ST: 10 +4 ST ST: 14 p: 2
Dex.: 16 +1 DX DX: 10 +2 DX DX: 13
Int.: 12 IQ: 10 +2 IQ, +6 mem IQ: 12 m: 6
Char.: 15 Charisma talent
Talents (class related): Knife, Sword 1, Sword 2, Missile Weapons, Bow,
Talents (other): Elf, Human, Literacy, Woodsman, Tactics
Talents (bonus): Charisma
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