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Points don't directly translate. D&D uses different game mechanics and different balancing techniques than Hero. Converting individual characters is a lot cleaner than trying to link the two systems together in a way where they don't normally compare.

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Well, while that is true, you can convert the feel of a character and get his important skills, feats and abilities.

 

So, when I'm converting my Paladin I sure as sh1t can translate Moonbeam and Misty step more or less word for word if I want to.  Obviously some things work less well in Hero especially the wards, and bonuses to saving throws and other abilities which affect the D&D system mechanics. Not that they can't be built, they can, but I don't know how important all that is compared to the feel of the character. I would just use the D&D character as a base for my Hero write up.

 

I would just say "Your characters are now in hero rules. You were 10th level so you have 250 points to spend :D

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I'm not big on having "magic shops"...

Can I just say Amen?! Nothing ruins the mystique of fantasy for me like: "This is mine enchanted blade Skullsplitter." "And on what epic quest did you acquire such a worthy item?" "Picked it up at the corner store. 100gp, slightly used."

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My thoughts too. If there's a lot of magic lying around then it's mundane not magical.

True if you have magic shops lying about like Starbucks. I always like the notion from Oriental Adventures that +1 weapons were really master craft work. Still should be rarer than your average weapon though. Also, just because it’s a magic shop, why should all the items be really magical?

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If a sword +1 is 'just' a piece of brilliant work by a master smith why does it affect beasties that can only be hurt by magic? Or do you have to be in +2 range before you can hit a ghost?

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My justification for numerous low-level magic items is that a lot of them are basically generated by circumstance.

 

Using D&D terms, a +5 Holy Avenger or something like that would probably be a gift from a deity to a powerful knight, to face a lethal foe.  And then once Sir Stickuphisbutt has the sword, it's out there in the world and other heroes can find it.  That's the sort of weapon you go on a quest to find.  Or you get really lucky.

 

But what about that +1 short sword you found in some nameless cave?  There seem to be a lot of weapons like that.  Is there some wizard out there with a fetish for mass-producing "My First Magic Item" for the common adventurer?  Probably not, right?  My justification is that a lot of items can slowly become magical if the right conditions are met.

 

1st level fighter Bob sets out with his companions to explore the ruined keep a half day's ride outside of town.  Rumor is some orcs have taken up residence there.  Orcs, and maybe something else.  Turns out there's an ogre down there.  Well Bob gets lucky and kills the ogre with one mighty two-handed swing.  Critical hit, max damage, and the ogre falls.  Everybody in the group goes back and tells the people in town how Bob slew the ogre.  Bob shows off his cool sword, flexes his muscles, reenacts it a few times for the crowd, etc.  Bob goes to 2nd level.  Let's say that over the course of Bob's career, he fights and kills 8 more ogres with that sword.  3 of them he kills with only one or two hits due to some great rolls.  Bob is getting quite the reputation locally as an ogre slayer.  Bob makes it all the way to 6th level before he blows a saving throw and gets killed by a spell-warded door.  His companions are unable to retrieve his body (or his stuff) and they leave him down in the depths of that particular dungeon.  Back in town, people tell stories about how great a hero Bob was.  40 years go by, and the whole time Bob's sword is down there in the dark, the remnants of the magic ward that killed Bob floating in the air around it.  Decades later, another adventurer from the town that "Bob the Mighty" came from finds himself down in that dungeon, and he finds Bob's sword, strangely intact and without rust.  The life of the previous owner, and the years sitting there in the haunted dungeon have turned it into a +1 longsword, +4 vs ogres.

 

For a fantasy civilization that is "stuck in time", there's been ample time for a lot of low level heroes to have had their adventures and empower their weapons.  By the time the PCs come along, there are a lot of mostly-forgotten heroes who left cool stuff around for you to find.

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Depending on your assumptions, commercial wizardry is quite plausible.

 

Such a wizard could easily end up with a collection of "stuff", some of which he might be willing to part with.

 

Or you could just have something like: "Nanoc the Old collected the swords of all the enemies he defeated. He's dead now, and his son is selling off most of his collection."

 

I agree that "magic shops" aren't going to be like Starbucks. But they could be like a small family run coffee shop, where everything is done by hand.

 

The way wizards are trained could influence things too. If there are schools of magic the kind of magic available could be relatively standard, while if wizards are anti-social and avoid sharing knowledge, things could be much more eclectic.

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In my campaign during times of higher magic magicians will have to make a magical item as part of their wizard training. So you end up with loads of tiny magic items. Doorstop of strength. Boots of comfort. Pens of neat handwriting etc.

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In my campaign during times of higher magic magicians will have to make a magical item as part of their wizard training. So you end up with loads of tiny magic items. Doorstop of strength. Boots of comfort. Pens of neat handwriting etc.

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Just to add to that you tend to get loads of items useful to wizards or useful to people who can afford to hire a magicians time for the months it takes to create. Lords and rich merchants who have different needs and desires. You very rarely see hoes of sodbusting cos farmers can't afford them

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There are several problems of allowing characters to trade 'wealth' for power:

 

1. characters never want to spend wealth on anything but more power

Why are you living in the woods and eating bark like a crazy man?

Because living in town and buying food costs money, and I'm saving up for a +2 sword

 

2. it encourages the PCs to loot everything

Hmm, if we stole all of this farmers turnips, we could sell them in the next town over for 1/100 of the cost of another wand of fireballs... So we totally steal that farmers turnips.

 

3. it reduces the ability of the GM to have fantastic, or even 'nice' environements.  Smaug can't be sleeping on a mountain of gold, because the PCs won't spend that gold on redeveloping Laketown, they'll spend it on more magic swords.

DM:The evil king has imprisoned you in this pretty castle on the lake.

PC: While I'm plotting my escape, I also use my appraise skill to determine which of the (paintings, tapestries, furniture, etc) has the best encumberance to value ratio and I take the most possible value of that stuff away with me when I escape.

 

----------------

 

If you are going to still want 'money' to still be able to buy 'power', the you probably want some sort of tiered economy.  (See, for example, Frank Trollman's turnip economy -> gold economy -> wish economy)

Can be reached via the wayback machine hopefully, here

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My justification for numerous low-level magic items is that a lot of them are basically generated by circumstance...

I'm out of rep for the day (and it's not even noon!) but I like this a lot. Sortof the reverse of "the magic was in you all along."

 

Also, now I really want to write a comedic fantasy adventure centered around a line of "My First Magic Item" products! I'm picturing a wizard of middling talent who got good enough to create +1 items, and then cashed out, and now runs a fairly lucrative business cranking them out; low profit individually, but he makes it up in volume of sales.

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There are several problems of allowing characters to trade 'wealth' for power:

 

1. characters never want to spend wealth on anything but more power

Why are you living in the woods and eating bark like a crazy man?

Because living in town and buying food costs money, and I'm saving up for a +2 sword

 

Lame.

 

"I've temporarily withdrawn from society and am practicing ascetic discipline for the good of my soul. (And I'm saving up for a +2 sword)."

 

It's like people don't know how to BS any more...

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That's why I personally tend to have magic items be extremely rare, and for the most part the only bonus is that that they get to ignore the "real weapon" limitations.   As for acceptable weapons/armor in town, I personally tend to rule that "peace knotted" side swords (and pistols) are common enough that people don't tend to raise an alarm, but heavy weapons, rifles, and noticeable armor will draw unwanted attention whether its "illegal" or not.  ...  But then again, I suspect that even a fantasy world with firearms is probably going to phase out heavy armor.

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Why would you want to make your weapon hard to ready?  Remember that 'police' as people who dealt with more than breaches of the peace is a 'modern' concept.  If someone robbed you and you wanted your stuff back, or a bit of revenge, you hired a thief taker; you'd didn't go to the watch. 

 

You didn't go into town all armored and armed because it was unnecessary and uncomfortable.  If the GM makes it necessary with dickishness, then PCs will put up with the discomfort.

 

As for firearms making armor go away... the age of the gun (sorta) started with the fall of the walls of Byzantium in 1453, and plate armor was still being worn until around 1650, and breastplates stayed on another hundred or more years.

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As a character? I wouldn't want to make my weapon any harder to ready than I had to, but its my understanding that "peace knots" were a historical fact (although there is some debate over what exactly they were) and that the fact that the guard isn't all that concerned by anything other than breaches of peace means making it harder to draw your weapon was a good thing in their eyes.

 

 

For what its worth though, I personally envision them in the way they were used in Wheel of Time, a simple ribbon/cord with a knot that had to be undone/broken before you could draw your sword.

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