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True20 D&D Emulation

True20 D&D Emulation

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Published by armornick

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Published by: armornick on Aug 19, 2009
Copyright:Attribution Non-commercial


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Modifications of True 20 rules for D&D style games
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The basic idea which inspired the creation of the rules present in this book was simple: to allow narrators to runD&D style games and specifically D&D adventures using True20 rules. I wanted to ensure that you could simplyconvert creatures and characters presented in a D20 3.5 edition adventure and run it using only basic True20 rules,True20 Bestiary and this file, with the character able to defeat monsters of an appropriate challenge rating.Additionately, I wanted to ensure that characters remain balanced at all levels, and that Warriors, Experts and Adeptswill be equally useful in combat, even in high-level play. Moreover, it should be possible and even easy to constructdifferent D&D character classes (Barbarian, Fighter, Paladin, Cleric, Wizard, Sorcerer) and they should also bebalanced.In order to differentiate between different kinds of casters I introduced the idea of “class feat”. Adepts bydefault cannot take any powers. They must first take one of the “class feats”, which decides the key ability andpower list the character can take. Some of those feats additionally allow to increase the adept level (serving as thebasis for power rank, for save difficulties and for damage in certain powers) by some “virtual” levels, equal eg tohalf of the number of Warrior levels, or even to take powers without taking any adept levels at all. To balance this,class feats providing most benefits to other roles (eg Ranger and Paladin, which can be taken by pure Warriors)allow to take the lowest number of powers.I wanted to allow players to play in the “D&D world”, with the classical magic items and powers assumedby published adventures. Accordingly, eg skills are modified to allow to use skill checks provided in the publishedadventures. I added some powers which model some of the more useful and iconic D&D spells, like Magic Missile,Evard’s Black Tentacles, and wizard cantrips. Since I wanted to keep characters as balanced in combat as possible,I decided that out of combat spells shouldn’t use the same pool of feat/powers. They are presented as rituals, whichcan be learned by any adept without the need to expend any feat slots. To stop characters from overusing them,I introduced certain penalties, like longer casting time, negative consequences of failure and expensive components.These rules have been balanced using level-appropriate magical items. In order to ensure balance, eachmagical item has a minimum character level necessary to use it, and characters have been balanced assuming at leastan appropriate weapon and armor or an item providing armor bonus. In order to make acquisition of necessary itemseasier I simplified the rules for crafting them, but at the same time removed the price discount. To allow Narratorssome control over the items player are going to craft, I introduced the need to find in game the recipes to creatingthem. At the same time I limited somewhat the number of necessary magic items, removing items providing savingthrow bonuses and ability bonuses, except for Strength and Dexterity (since there already exist powers providingbonuses to those abilities).It can be added that some items have been changed, and others have become much more useful due todifferences in rules. Ring of Mind Shielding and Wands of Cure have become very useful items.Any reader who follows the news about the D&D 4 edition will see some similarites here. This is deliberate;True20 was one of the first simplified versions of D20 3.5 edition and served in some aspects as a precursor of theFourth Edition. I thought it appropriate to include those innovations which seemed an improvement. Some of thesimilarities are actually a case of independent but convergent development, since I have began tinkering with thoserules even before the announcement of the Fourth Edition.

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