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Old 05-27-2019, 02:39 PM   #31
larsdangly
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Default Re: Converting GURPS characters to TFT

How differently do people feel about this now that the Legacy Edition has been out and we've all had a chance to assimilate it? My general feeling is that it is much easier than we were imagining to do the conversion both because the number of talents you know is divorced from your IQ score, and because stat scores outside of the typical GURPS range are now also pretty much out of reach in TFT. Also, if you have the companion you can introduce flaws that are functionally like the disadvantage system inn GURPS. I think a 1:1 conversion is probably in reach for lots of things. One issue you'd run into is that TFT characters suffer from the burden of heavy armor more than GURPS characters do, so you might find yourself thinking your converted characters need another couple points of DX to function as they did in GURPS.
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Old 05-27-2019, 06:53 PM   #32
Skarg
 
Join Date: May 2015
Default Re: Converting GURPS characters to TFT

I think it's about as I expected, but the points you make are good. The attribute limit sort of helps as you say, but can also pose some issues, as I have found when converting a few characters from GURPS and from pre-attribute-limit TFT. One common tricky part is the adjDX impact of armor, as you wrote. Also sometimes skill levels. And magic spells. The resulting abilities may end up pretty different in some cases (GURPS designs that use armor and active defenses won't tend to work as well in TFT), but it's probably closer than you'd get than coming from most (any?) other game systems.
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Old 05-27-2019, 08:13 PM   #33
Shostak
 
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Default Re: Converting GURPS characters to TFT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Skarg View Post
One common tricky part is the adjDX impact of armor, as you wrote.
As long as you're house-ruling, just have armor's weight factor into a figure's encumberance instead of giving a flat MA modifier. It's more book keeping, but not onerously so.
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Old 05-28-2019, 11:15 AM   #34
larsdangly
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Default Re: Converting GURPS characters to TFT

That's an interesting suggestion, and one that I could see as a really solid house rule. But note that any rule that changes the trade off of protection vs. DX and MA penalty will radically change the way people design fighters. Note that the penalties to DX and MA for wearing plate armor just based on weight alone (ITL 65) are pretty negligible, and the protective value is enormous. So, armored fighters will basically always defeat unarmored opponents (probably even at a 2:1 or even 3:1 match up).

If you are interested in realism this might be a change for the better: The reality is that armor is very effective against pre gunpowder weapons, people experienced in using it can't really run long distances, swim, etc., but they can fight well. Historically, people generally chose to wear it if they could (and environmental factors didn't prevent it). But if you are interested in play balance and the competitive gladiatorial side of TFT, it will 'invalidate' a lot of character design concepts. Basically, unarmored combatants will not belong on the same field as armored ones.
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Old 05-29-2019, 12:14 AM   #35
Skarg
 
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Default Re: Converting GURPS characters to TFT

Yes. Well, without an armor DX penalty, the armor MA penalty can still be very significant, because the heavily-armored people often can't make the lightly-armored people fight them, because they tend to be able to run away. Or even, out-maneuver them and wear them down with skirmish tactics.

Having low MA also means the low-MA person can't run away from higher-MA foes.

I find that in GURPS, where there is almost no armor DX penalty, but encumbrance tends to slow movement by about the same proportion as in TFT (and there are defensive drawbacks - reduced Dodge and Retreat), that many people choose to limit their armor to what they can still get around well in, usually cloth or leather, for most situations.

In a few other rules sets I've tried, it can also work well to penalize defense but not offense. TFT doesn't really have much of a defense score, except in certain house rules.
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Old 05-29-2019, 08:19 AM   #36
larsdangly
 
Join Date: Dec 2017
Default Re: Converting GURPS characters to TFT

Just try it on for size: put any two 32 point characters in an arena armed with anything they like and give one any armor you wish with ENC only penalties and the other no armor. I'm guessing 90+ % victory chance for the armored combatant. Really, the only possible strategies for the unarmored combatant are: heavy crossbow and hope to get lucky; charging halberd or pike axe and hope to get lucky; pray for a 3 or 4 on your first attack.

Honestly, that is all probably about as it should be.
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Old 05-29-2019, 09:56 AM   #37
Skarg
 
Join Date: May 2015
Default Re: Converting GURPS characters to TFT

1) An arena combat with walls and locked exits is clearly a special situation.

2) Only using TFT encumbrance effects of weight is very different from applying the usual TFT MA penalties for armor.

3) Apart from those points, yes it probably is about as it should be, realistically speaking, to not charge DX penalties to attack while in armor, and armor should probably generally provide a major advantage.

4) Heavy armor also should (realistically speaking) probably also be more expensive and associated with the better and higher-status warriors (for social reasons more than for "I have a super DX so I can use it without becoming inept" reasons).
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Old 05-30-2019, 07:54 AM   #38
Nils_Lindeberg
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Default Re: Converting GURPS characters to TFT

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Kane View Post
Rob W - this is not such an easy question to answer. To begin with, in TFT not all 32 point characters are of the same value in relation to each other.

...

In short, and on average, in TFT, where 1 DX is worth roughly a bit more than 2.5 times that of 1 ST.

For some reason the value 2.68 or 2.86 is springing to mind, but do not hold me to it.

JK
This is just plain wrong!

I and others have simulated this (Monte Carlo style in different program languages), and 1 DX is absolutely not worth more than 1 ST. And definitely not 2.5 or 2.68. I was very surprised when I saw the results of the tests where every possible 32, 36, 40 and 44 point human fought every other of the same experience level and the difference was often so small it couldn't be measured unless you had hundreds of fights. The only difference was that there are a lot of wrong builds that use DX outside the optimum around 9-13. In those suboptimal builds, DX increases are either worthless or very good. But as soon as you hit the sweet spot 9-13 it is equal to ST.

There are some levels that are very important, like having 1 more adjDX than your opponent or having ST enough to break through the opponent's armor. But those optimum levels vary with the opponents. And unless you know what you will be facing it is not something you can calculate. The top contenders at 32p were 12/12 and 13/11 builds with a small shield and no armor. And quite a few others, especially as you increased the experience level and took talents into account. Other sweet spots were weapon damage that increased by a die, from 1+1 to 2-2 instead of 1+2 which has a lower average. (ST 10 and ST 13)

This is not an opinion any longer, it is a proven fact by now. And also one of the most impressive feats of balancing I have seen in an old school RPG. Kudos to SJ. I don't think he did all the math back then, but he did get most of it very right at a time when his competitors considered Halflings a Class and not a race and Bend Bars was one of only 10 skills or so.

So in short, aim for 1 more DX than your opponent, but no more, as long as your adjDX is within 9-12, and at higher levels with opponents having expertise; 10-13. And the rest in ST. Going for expertise and mastery is not really a good pay-off in the arena if you buy it with experience point by point. If you start with a higher attribute character, then it is worth it, but not that much better than going with straight up better ST and DX. But if you are going for a campaign, the expertise and mastery talents also opens up other IQ options that can be very nice to have.

One thing we didn't take into account was missile weapons since those are so dependent on the terrain and starting distance of the two fighters. We didn't take into account the advantage of armor in a grand melee where you will be attacked last if you are a tank and focus fired if you are a glass cannon. And we assumed that most people would not get a side or back attack. We just tested one on one melee fights (with polearms). We also cut off some fights that lasted longer than 20+ turns due to miserable adjDX or too much armor compared to weak weapons. And all this with beta Legacy rules
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Old 05-30-2019, 08:12 AM   #39
Nils_Lindeberg
 
Join Date: Jul 2018
Default Re: Converting GURPS characters to TFT

For a house rule, there would be almost no impact on the game balance if you changed 1 armor point or 1 negative adjDX to a defensive advantage respectively a defensive penalty.

We already have a bunch of different defensive bonuses from shield expertise, fencing, mastery, and HTH. So a set of armor that gives 2 armor and -2 adjDX could also give 2 armor, -1 adjDX for you and +1 adjDX for your opponent.

One could also go the D&D armor class route with non-absorption armor that gave you -2adjDX and the opponent -2 adjDX. But personally, I feel that a plate should make you easier to hit and harder to hurt, not harder to hit and once you are hit you take just as much damage as an unarmored character.

The same goes for ST penalties. You could change it so a plate lowers your effective ST instead of DX or a combination of the two as long as both your health and weapon choice got affected. An ST 14 hero with leather would effectively be an ST 12 hero. OR a combination of the three. If armor lowered your ST, encumbrance would also become more of a thing if you used adjST for that and dwarves could actually have more armor and not less than humans. It would also fit the narrative of the big strong guy having lots of armor, while the DX fighter didn't. And it would be easier to shield rush a plated opponent.

MA penalties in a fight situation could also be questioned. Since MA is waaay to slow for realistic running, it means it is more of a situational thing. Moving around in combat, being ready for anything and not getting stabbed in passing. And if you have a plate on, you could basically ignore any glancing passing blows and move with a purpose. But then again your vision would be impaired, so you might be slowed down due to that... and so on.

I will stick to the rules as written now that plate armor has been properly balanced.

The only thing I will add as a house rule is combat-fatigue to avoid those ridiculous 5-minute combats when two tanks meet up. It will be a thing in any knight campaign now. Something like 1 fatigue from every hit that does more than half of your armor, but doesn't wound you.

I might also add some piece of equipment that lowers the chance/effect of a critical hit but gives other penalties. Like a full helm with negative alertness or weak spot reinforcements that lowers MA to 4, but also changes crits to +1 die and +2 dice instead of double and triple damage. Small weapons will still be able to cut through in HTH, but that battle axe will not hit you through the face guard or under your armpit and auto kill you.

Last edited by Nils_Lindeberg; 05-30-2019 at 08:33 AM.
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