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The Elder Scrolls: A Savage Worlds Conversion
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kreider204
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thunderforge wrote:
And for that matter, should I just completely axe the New Power Edge and make it all purchased? They would still get 2 free powers to start with.


I approve of that idea.
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newForumNewName
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 7:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Read it now.

Thunderforge wrote:
ValhallaGH wrote:
Personally, I'd prefer that some of those tomes you find by the house-full would have spells in them, since they probably shouldn't give you +1 parry for reading a book.

So… I take that as a yes to having them in this conversion? How about a base price of $100 x Max Power Points to Cast x Rank seem? (e.g. Speak Language costs $100, Bolt costs $300, Intangibility costs $2,000, everything else is in between). And for that matter, should I just completely axe the New Power Edge and make it all purchased? They would still get 2 free powers to start with.

If they can purchase any powers, then why give them freebees? Just price the powers and make it part of equipment purchasing. Or maybe a free power for each point into a magical skill from that list?

Thunderforge wrote:
newForumNewName wrote:
I haven't had a chance to read through the whole thing (or the magic section #1icon_wall ), but it seems to me that this setting screams "different trapping, different power!" So there are maybe a few hundred different versions of Bolt floating around. Et cetera.

You might want to read the magic section then Very Happy I just listed Savage Worlds powers and had notes about trappings rather than having Firebolt, Frostbolt, Shockbolt, Viperbolt, etc.

The specific powers under each skill seems fine, but definitely note that each trapping is specific and different than every other trapping. Since it's a magic-filled world, to the point where you're thinking of taking the New Power Edge out of the setting (I approve of that, by the way), it seems like each and every trapping ought to count as a new and different power for the purpose of a character saying, "I know the acid arrow spell. Now I can create fireballs!" because they would both be the bolt power.
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Thunderforge
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 9:56 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That makes sense. When they purchase a power they have to purchase it with a certain trapping. If they want the same power with a different trapping (perhaps if they don't like how Dunmer are harder to kill with a Firebolt and now they want a Frostbolt), they can buy it again.

As for why give them freebies, I guess I figured everyone could use a little bit of magic. But in looking at some of the premade classes in Oblivion, I see that 6 out of 21 don't use any magic. So it looks like I could do away with it.

If I did this, I think I would have to increase the starting cost to compensate (to $1,000, I suppose), which would probably result in non-casters being more likely to buy better weapons and armor from the start (a Daedric dagger and leather armor would cost $985). Does this seem like an issue? Is there a better way to handle this?
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 10:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I say stick with the $500. SW doesn't have classes, but the folk that invest in the most basic powers ($100) might start with one and some decent gear or a few and just clothes. Or they could invest in Rich so that they can afford that sort of thing. A thought, anyway.
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ValhallaGH
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 11:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thunderforge wrote:
If I did this, I think I would have to increase the starting cost to compensate (to $1,000, I suppose),

Careful. That has to come out of a mage's starting funds, which didn't change. $500 does not a spell purchase at that point, so you can't start as a caster.

Your previous formula is expensive but tolerable, though you may want to increase the Rank multiplier. 1 for Novice seems good, but how much is a blast actually worth? $1200? $2400? $60,000? That's where you can really start figuring out how to adjust prices.
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 11:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One version of blast that costs 2 PP: 2 x 2 x $100 = $400

Another version that costs 4 PP: 4 x 2 x $100 = $800

Yet another version that costs 6: 6 x 2 x $100 = $1200

For all four versions, just with a fire trapping: $2400.

How fluid is the currency? That might be overpriced...
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Thunderforge
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sorry for the delay with getting back to this. Real life and all…

After some thought, I've decided to keep the starting money at 500 gold. Part of this was that I forgot that you could use one Hindrance Point to get an extra 500 gold, so casters can invest much more easily.

As for how fluid the currency is, I guess it's pretty much the standard Savage Worlds level since we're keeping medieval weapon prices the same (times the multiplier for weapons of better make). The Elder Scrolls games had quests that generally paid between 250 gold and 500 gold and I imagine that that 100-200 gold apiece would be appropriate for a tabletop game.

I'd rather not create different versions of a spell because it adds a lot more complexity that I don't think I want. I figure I will just put in a base cost and will let the GM figure out how much a version with a specific trapping costs (and how much a spellmaster is trying to rip you off).

Here's a revised version:

Purchasing Powers:
Magic users often know many spells in Tamriel and are willing to pass on what they know to others…for a price. Instead of gaining powers via the New Power Edge, powers can be purchased from those who are trained teachers of the magical arts. Learning a new power requires 1d6 hours of lessons and practice.

The base cost of a power is (100 Septims) x (Maximum Magicka to Cast) x (Rank of Power), where "Maximum Magicka to Cast" is how much Magicka is required to have the spell go off with all modifiers (except for the "Additional Targets" modifier). For instance, the cost of the bolt spell is 300 Septims because there is a maximum Magicka of 3 to cast it (3 bolts at once) and it is a Novice power. [Creator's note: That's more than half of the starting money, so it seems to be about on par]

Explaining how to use a power is more difficult than it seems because much of it requires "getting a knack for it." A player character can attempt to instruct another person about a power he or she knows by making an Arcane Skill roll at a –4. If they fail the roll, they are not able to teach the power and cannot try again. The person receiving the instruction must learn the power from someone else. [Creator's note: This is to avoid creating a homogeneous party by having everyone teach each other all their spells]

New Edge:
Arcane Instructor

Requirements: Veteran, Smarts d10, d10 in at least one Magic skill
The penalty to teach another person a power is reduced to a –2.
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tigerguy786
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 17, 2012 11:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thunderforge wrote:

New Edge:
Arcane Instructor

Requirements: Veteran, Smarts d10, d10 in at least one Magic skill
The penalty to teach another person a power is reduced to a –2.


I would also add an improved version that requires the edge and Legendary to reduce the cost to 0.
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PeteAtoms
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 11:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I really like your conversion! I started my own TES conversion a while ago and soon gave up on it. Just a quick skim through and I'm really impressed. I'll have to start statting up some NPC's using your rules soon and start some combat/practice.
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Yuritau
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thunderforge wrote:
Yuritau wrote:
The thing I notice is an increase in the number of skills required to be a proficient spell caster, but no similar increase for any other character type. This forces caster type character to spend a lot more advances on skills than other character types.

I'm a bit confused. Your statement matches my intention, but it sounds like you're seeing this as an issue.

My rationale is that in-universe, NPCs tend to specialize in only a few schools and a lot of people mix schools of magic with martial skills (e.g. a Nightblade uses swordsmanship with illusion magic), but aren't generally skilled in all schools. Since there are also no consequences for failing to cast a spell, my aim was to get something between Arcane Background (Magic) and Arcane Background (Superpowers). I felt that this was a fair balance that replicated the world, but I take it you disagree?


My reason for disliking it is just what I said. If you want to play a wizard-type character, that's proficient at more than 2 schools of magic, you are forced to spend far more of your advances on skill increases than any other character type. All the archers, melee fighters, sneakers, etc are spending advances on edges while your wizard is stuck buying his spellcasting skills up, just so he can have the same die-type the fighter STARTED with in fighting.
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VonDan
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 18, 2012 10:11 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have started two Elder scroll Games and both start in Prison so that should be the starting point of every game
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ValhallaGH
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PostPosted: Mon Mar 19, 2012 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

VonDan wrote:
I have started two Elder scroll Games and both start in Prison so that should be the starting point of every game

It's Elder Scrolls. You're always starting as a prisoner, you always become an epic hero of myth, and you always have to restart two or more times because you didn't understand the game mechanics and your first few characters are useless.
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PeteAtoms
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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the other spells, about something like this?

Power: Jump (Leap from the SharkBytes Vol 1 Issue 3 p36, Clint turned the Leap super power into an arcane power)
Rank: S
PP: 1
Duration: Instant
Range: Self
"With this spell, the caster makes a single prodigious
jump in any direction. He can leap 4” horizontally (with at
least a 10’ ceiling), or 3” straight up. The leap can come
before, during, or after the caster’s normal Pace. If he runs
at least 6” before jumping, the horizontal distance increases
to 5”."

Power: Burden (Alteration)
Rank: N
PP: 2
Range: Touch
Duration: 3 (1/round)
The caster makes an arcane skill roll vs the targets Spirit. On a success, the target adds 10 to his carrying load (same as lowering Strength by 1 die type for purpose of Encumbrance). On a raise, the target suffers 15 to his load.

Power: Feather (Alteration)
Rank: N
PP 2
Range: Touch
Duration: 3 (1/round)
Similar to Burden. On a successful arcane skill roll, the target's load is reduced by 10 (15 on a raise).
-> Up to 5 additional targets may be affected by spending like PP.

Power: Frenzy (Illusion)
Rank: S
PP: 4
Range: 4/8/16
Duration: Instant
Every character (friend and foe) in a MBT must make a Smarts roll or Berserk.

Power: Rally (Illusion)
Rank: N
PP: 2
Range: Special
Duration: 3 (1/round)
On a success, grants the caster the Command edge for the duration of the spell; on a raise, caster gains the Command Presence edge as well.

Power: Weakness to <X> (Destruction)
Rank: N
PP: 2
Range: Smarts
Duration: 3 (1/round)
On a successful arcane skill roll vs target's Spirit check, target suffers an additional 1d6 damage when struck by attacks of that trapping. On a raise, the target weakness increases by one die step (1d8). This power does not stack with other powers or natural weaknesses, the target suffers from whichever weakness is greatest in magnitude.


EDIT: The thing about not including these kinds of powers, is that by having 6 separate skills for magic, you creating more limitations than the games have.

The Boost/Lower Trait, for example, is a Restoration power in your conversion. But to suggest that characters use Boost/Lower Trait as a substitute for Weakness to <X>, you are taking away a power from the Destruction school.

Using Boost/Lower Trait for Weakness to <X> kind of takes away the logic that was used for putting into Restoration in the first place. The trappings just seem a little out of place in some cases.

I'm not sure if my objection makes sense or not, but it's definitely a balancing act as far as putting the powers into the different schools.

Have you thought about just using 1 magic skill and/or using the Skill Specialization rules outlined in SWD page 95? And am I right in assuming that characters cannot Enchant or make potions unless they take the relevant edge? How does this fit in with the idea that everyone starts with magic from the get-go?
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Thunderforge
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 21, 2012 11:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the spells, PeteAtoms. First off, I should probably say that my first priority for spells was to make every standard Savage Worlds Deluxe spell available. This means that there are some new powers that aren't included in the games (e.g. Burrowing, Intangibility, Slumber). This seemed more important to me than adding every single power that was in the game.

I took the Savage Worlds advice to "cut the fat" and only add powers when they were absolutely necessary. Soul Trap was obviously included because it's an important part of The Elder Scrolls. Admittedly, I included Slowfall because I have fond memories of playing Morrowind and jumping out of towers, then landing safely on the ground. As for all of the other powers in the games, I just didn't think that they were necessary to include (or I had concerns about how they would work in Savage Worlds).

I like the Jump spell and I think that will get included. Thanks for that!

As for Burden and Feather, I have the same issue with it that I do with it in the games: it's more effective to just lower or boost Strength. Besides, Savage Worlds specifically says "In general, you shouldn’t worry about Encumbrance. Characters will usually carry no more than their characters think they actually need." (SWD, pg. 49) Encumbrance an important mechanic for the video games, but I don't think it really comes across well in Savage Worlds. Heck, I ignore it my games (we just eyeball it) so a Feather or Burden spell would just be ignored.

Your version of Frenzy is a pretty interesting; I never thought about making a person go Berserk. But in reading the text for Berserk, it doesn't seem like they have to attack, which is the whole point of Frenzy in the games. In fact, they could just get Berserk'd, then do nothing and make a Smarts roll to make it go off. I think that this too is a spell that works better in the video game than it would in Savage Worlds.

I'll think about adding Rally, but I would change it to "gain a Leadership Edge of your choice," so long as the prerequisites are met (either by already having the Edges or casting it multiple times. This would make it a more specialized version of Warrior's Gift and I'm concerned that it might be too specialized, but I'll think about it.

As for Weakness to <X>, Smite already does something similar (+2/+4 damage to a weapon), but I'm guessing you're expecting this to be used in tandem with Bolt or something. I'm concerned about the possibility of doing 3d6+1d8 damage on a single bolt, which seems way too powerful.

PeteAtoms wrote:
The Boost/Lower Trait, for example, is a Restoration power in your conversion. But to suggest that characters use Boost/Lower Trait as a substitute for Weakness to <X>, you are taking away a power from the Destruction school.

I kind of see it differently in that if I included Weakness to <X>, I would be adding a power to the Destruction school, since I started with Savage Worlds powers as a baseline. Besides, do Destruction casters really need to be more powerful than they already are?

The whole conversion for other powers thing was inspired by the conversion in the Classic Deadlands to Savage Worlds conversion (back before Pinnacle released Reloaded). Sure, powers didn't work quite the same as in Classic and some just weren't used, but it gave a general idea of how the powers in the established setting worked in a new system. I put this conversion in here not to create alternate trappings, but to give that same general ideas about how they fit in with the new system. I especially think it might be helpful for a new Savage who is coming from the video games.

PeteAtoms wrote:
Have you thought about just using 1 magic skill and/or using the Skill Specialization rules outlined in SWD page 95?

You know, I did, but ultimately I decided it didn't really fit the way that I felt magic worked in The Elder Scrolls. Although the player is usually familiar with most of the magic styles, virtually all of the NPCs are only adept at one or two (heck, each of the Mages Guild Halls in Oblivion specialized in only one school of magic). Besides, with the ditching of the New Power Edge in favor of buying spells (as I proposed above) and no requirement for the Arcane Background Edge, Spell Casters need something to limit their advancement so they stay balanced with warriors.

PeteAtoms wrote:
And am I right in assuming that characters cannot Enchant or make potions unless they take the relevant edge? How does this fit in with the idea that everyone starts with magic from the get-go?

That's correct, they need to take the respective Professional Edge to do that. This was largely based on the Alchemist Edge from Deadlands Reloaded (it was added in the 2nd printing, I think). As for how it fits in, I guess that Alchemy and Enchanting always seemed to me like something that people spent a lifetime learning, as indicated by the few people who did it, even within the Mages Guild/College of Winterhold. Although the player in the games can do it from the get go, it doesn't seem like something most of the NPCs do. I was also concerned that if it were something everyone could do in Savage Worlds, it would really throw off the balance of power in the games. You can make a fortune in any of the games by just buying out a shopkeeper's ingredients, brewing potions, and selling them back to them. Having a whole party do that is something I want to avoid in Savage Worlds.

I realize that there are a lot of different ideas about how Elder Scrolls magic might look in Savage Worlds. Mine is one that I personally feel represents the setting well while staying true to Savage Worlds. I appreciate your feedback and I hope that my responses don't come across as criticism. I appreciate what you have to say and I'll be sure to include the Jump power in the next revision and possibly Rally as well, so I definitely appreciate you providing those.
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PeteAtoms
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 10:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can see your point of view. And I'm just spitballin' these suggestions, I can't make any informed suggestions until I've actually tried the conversion or read an actual play summary Mr. Green

Looking forward to the updated conversion though #1beerchug
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Thunderforge
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 22, 2012 11:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm busy coordinating stuff for WittCon this weekend in Springfield, OH. I'm running an Elder Scrolls scenario there which is going to be set in Summerset Isle where the High Elves live. I figure it'll be a lot of fun playing in an area that hasn't been seen in any of the games (well, there was Arena, but that doesn't really count).

I'll get to get a good field test out of the game. Hopefully in the following week I'll be able to release an updated version.
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Yuritau
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 24, 2012 1:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

ValhallaGH wrote:
It's Elder Scrolls. You're always starting as a prisoner, you always become an epic hero of myth, and you always have to restart two or more times because you didn't understand the game mechanics and your first few characters are useless.


That last bit is (partially) untrue! I've never seen an Elder Scrolls starting character that was useless. Your starting stats are so completely irrelevant (especially in Skyrim) that they just don't matter. There is definitely a lot of re-rolling in Elder Scrolls games.. but that's more because of finding out a certain character doesn't play the way you wanted it to, etc.
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Thunderforge
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PostPosted: Tue Apr 03, 2012 4:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Forgot to mention that I updated the rules over the weekend! The updated rules can be downloaded at the original blog post here.

Version 1.1 Changelog

New Features
  • Created a new “Necromancer” Professional Edge, which provides a cheaper way of summoning Skeletons, allows the use of the zombie power, and allows the creation of Black Soul Gems
  • Created a new “Wizard of War” Professional Edge, which allows an individual to make both a Destruction and Fighting attack in the same round and apply a –2 penalty to just one of them
  • Added the jump power originally printed as the leap power in SharkBytes Vol. 1, Issue 3, pg. 36

Gameplay Changes
  • The Alteration, Destruction, and Restoration skills are linked with Spirit, rather than Smarts
  • In order to better replicate the games, additional Powers are now purchased with money, rather than learned as part of the New Power Edge.
  • Altmer take a –2 Toughness versus Fire, Cold, and Electric attacks
  • Khajiit now have a d6 Stealth at character creation
  • The Steed birthsign now grants a bonus when running
  • Scrolls with ranged spells target with a Smarts roll, rather than a Shooting roll
  • The zombie power is now limited to those who have the Necromancer Professional Edge
  • Slightly improved the Scamp’s Pace and bite/claw attack and fixed an error in calculating its Toughness
  • The Mace of Molag Bal now actually has its damage listed (Str+d8+2)
  • A duplicate entry for Volendrug (with different statistics!) has been removed

Textual Changes
  • Clarified text of Dunmer’s “Grim Demeanor” racial feature to make it clearer that the Mean hindrance does not apply to other Dunmer
  • Made the Khajiit climbing bonus listed separately from the Natural Claws racial feature.
  • Clarified the Redguard Adrenaline Rush text to make it more obvious that Mighty Blow and other Wild Card Edges cannot be used
  • Clarified the text of The Warrior birthsign to indicate that it can’t be used to boost damage
  • Made it clearer that most, but not all, attack powers bottled in a potion will require a Throwing roll to activate
  • Added a missing “not” to the Enchantment text
  • Added mark to note that Bless/Curse is found in the Fantasy Companion
  • Gave the falling rate in game inches for the Slowfall power
  • Clarified text of Azura’s Star to make it clear that a creature must have the soul trap spell active upon it for it to be trapped

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kronovan
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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2012 1:08 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I love the work you've put into this Thunderforge. I'm probably not the biggest fan of Elders Scrolls, but my son, nephew and their friends are serious fans of Morrowind, Oblivion and Skyrim so I'm looking to put a game together. For the most part I really like your adaption to SW -especially like the races- and I've read through this thread to get the jist of the changes to version 1.1. I can see where arcana was the most difficult aspect, which is no surprise considering the 6 different schools of magic in the videogames.

Something I'm not quite sure about is the magicka bonuses for certain races. I noticed this in you description under Magic:

"Unless otherwise specified, all characters start off with 5 Magicka and two powers."

Which has caused me to wonder what these bonuses under races translate to in term of characters, since the new v.1.1 rules have the players purchasing new spells from a trainer..

"Altmer (High Elf)...
Magical Blood: It is said that Altmer have Magicka flowing through their veins. All Altmer get +10 Magicka."


"Breton...
Fortified Magicka: All Bretons gain +5 Magicka."


Are the effects of the bonuses that the Altmer will now start with 6 powers and Breton with 4 powers instead of 2? I think where my confusion comes in, is that the magick system in your conversion seems to be a no power points system instead using a separate skill dice for each magick school, but the magicka value seems to allude to their being a magicka points pool. Did I miss something in my reading?

[Edit] Argh, never mind. Somehow earlier, I don't know how, but I missed this comment in the doc:

"Game Mechanic Terminology Changes
In order to match the in-universe term for the concept, Power Points are renamed Magicka, but function the same way."


So that seems to answer my question, that this conversion does indeed feature a power points based magic system.
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Thunderforge
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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2012 10:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks, kronovan, for taking a look into this. You're right, this conversion does use the default power-points system. Perhaps I need to make that a bit more obvious.

I'd be excited to hear how your game goes if you do wind up running it for your son, nephew, and their friends. And if you have any other suggestions, let me know!
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