By Killer Shrike
Conversion Document
FROM: AD&D 2nd Edition
TO: HERO System 5th Edition

In 2nd Edition some classes had similar abilities; this document discusses how to handle them.


In 2nd Edition, for some professions, as a character progressed in level people would hear about them and show up to follow them automatically once the character got to a certain Level threshold. Alternately, the character would seek the followers out. Either way there are a few ways to handle this in the HERO System.


The GM might be persuaded to treat them as Story Elements completely under is own control.
The NPCs who currently like me: Real Cost: 0 points


If they don't actually do anything for your Character, don't worry about them; they are just background flavor.
What followers: None: Real Cost: 0 points


The most straightforward (and expensive) method is to simply buy them using the appropriately named Followers Perk. Considering the mythical worth of Honor among Thieves, this is probably the safest option for a Thief with hanger-ons, as followers are much less likely to backstab you. This is the method to use for a cohort or similar.
Couple of Followers: 2 Followers (Base 50, Max Disadvantages 75); Real Cost: 15 points
Bunch of Followers: 128 Followers (Base 50, Max Disadvantages 75); Real Cost: 45 points
If your Followers just hang out "back at the guild quarters" or "back at the fortress" or the like, and you only communicate with them when you need something, then the GM might let you buy them as Contacts. This might also work out for some more autonomous "knowledge workers" like snitches, fences, and procurers.
My Peon Peeps: Contact (Contact has: useful Skills or resources, Very Good relationship with Contact), Organization Contact (+2) (18 Active Points) 12-; Real Cost: 18 points
If your Followers mostly just get in the way and/or force you to take action to fix their problems, defend them, pay them, save them from rampaging dragons and the like, they are probably DNPC's. However, because a massive Disadvantage can accrue quickly from this, most GM's would probably want to put a logical limit on it.
A bit too many Points and too reoccurring: Dependent NPC: Followers 8- (Incompetent; Group DNPC: x64 DNPCs; Useful noncombat position or skills); Real Cost: -40 points
Better: Dependent NPC: Followers 5- (Incompetent; Group DNPC: "a bunch of DNPCs"; Useful noncombat position or skills); Real Cost: -25 points
Money can buy you friends....until it runs out. The GM may allow you to convert some or all of your Followers into hirelings, who are paid for in gold rather than character points. Since each setting is different, and role-playing could (and should) have a massive impact on this, its difficult to guestimate, but a simple rule of the Real Cost of each Follower in Gold per year isn't too unreasonable in most AD&D-esque economies..
Friendship Tax: 128 Followers (Base 50, Max Disadvantages 75); Real Cost: 0 points, 5760 Gold Coins per year


Depending upon the individual followers, mix it up. Useful heist-capable, adventuring cohorts bought as followers, slack-jawed knee breaker bill-collectors paid for as hirelings, and the useless comic relief characters the GM is so amused by as Story Elements.