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Back in the old days of D&D, it was often seen that a player would bring a character from one campaign to another, playing with a variety of DMs. The character that I most often did this with was Thuffir IronHelm, my second AD&D1e character and the one who lasted the longest.

Thuffir went through multiple incarnations – primarily as an AD&D character, with a few appearances as a B/X D&D character and a fairly long haul in a series of D&D3.x games. He’s been all over the universe, having had to deal with six shooters in Boot Hill, crazed mutants in Gamma World, and in his last great adventure he was instrumental in saving the realms from a Githyanki invasion that ended with the slaying of the Githyanki lich-queen. He’s even made appearances in Traveller, Hackmaster 4e, and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles – once he got a reputation as a planes-hopping adventuring hero, I was often invited by DMs to use the character in their games, regardless of the system. (In fact, it got annoying because I got a reputation as one of those players who always plays the same character – whereas the reality is that I often had to convince GMs to let me make a new character instead of converting Thuffir over to their game).

Thuffir became the leader of many parties throughout his history, but his constant travel from world to world meant that he also often found himself suddenly a member of an existing party where he would work to fill in whatever skill gaps (as long as they didn’t involve magic) that he could. His psionics made him particularly useful, as he could even fill in for a minor spellcaster when necessary. When on other worlds or very far from his home turf, Thuffir brags that in fact he is not a “true dwarf”, but is a midget of a giant, thus explaining his seemingly magic abilities.

Thuffir is almost always very well dressed, with a red or yellow silk shirt, heavy red-dyed leather kilt (with braces), and expensive dark brown hard leather boots, with his dark red cloak tossed back over a shoulder.

Of the versions of Thuffir, this is the only one that was created purely by playing the games as written. Thuffir was rolled up as a level 1 disposable character in an AD&D campaign in 1982, and somehow he survived the deathtrap dungeon that nearly wiped out the entire party. With his combination of psionics, fighting and “other” skills, he managed to keep surviving through many hardships. The other versions that I will be posting over the next few days were conversions of this particular version to other rules sets – typically done by the DM of the game in question, with my input.

Thuffir was rolled up using Method III from the DMG (3d6 six times taking the best result, then recorded for that stat, then on to the next stat). My dice loved me that evening, and Thuffir is the kind of character that I would later come to be annoyed with – too many high stats and no real weaknesses. He fights with his battle axe in one hand and dagger in the other (-1 to hit with the battle axe, -3 with the dagger). He owns magic plate mail and shield, both bearing the markings of his clan and family, but only wears them when the situation requires it of him (his armor class is actually worse wearing plate +1 with a shield +1 than when unarmored).

Thuffir IronHelm
Race: Dwarf
Class: Fighter/Thief
Level: 8 / 10
Experience: 221,050 / 190,355
Alignment: Neutral Good

(18/82) Strength: 18/82 (+2 to hit, +4 damage, +1,500 cn enc., open doors: 1-4, bend bars: 30%)
(12) Intelligence: 12 (+2 languages)
(17) Wisdom: 17 (+3 on saves vs magic)
(15) Dexterity: 16 (+1 reaction/attacking, -2 AC)
(18) Constitution: 18 (+2/+4 hp per level)
(17) Charisma: 16 (8 henchmen, +20 loyalty, +25 reactions)

Hit Points: 69
Armor Class: -2
THAC0: 14

Saving Throws
Paralyzation, Poison, Death: 10
Petrification or Polymorph: 10
Rod, Staff or Wand: 10
Breath Weapon: 12
Spells: 11

Special Abilities
+5 on saves versus poisons, magic wands, staves, rods & spells
Infravision 60′
Detect sloping passages 75%
Detect new construction 75%
Detect sliding or shifting walls or rooms 66.6%
Detect stonework traps 50%
Determine depth underground 50%
+1 to hit half-orcs, goblins, hobgoblins & orcs
-4 to be hit by ogres, trolls, ogre magi, giants and titans
Cannot use thief abilities if wearing armor greater than leather
Backstab: +4 to hit, x4 damage
Read magic and use magic user, illusionist and druidic scrolls (25% chance to fail)

Weapon Proficiencies
Non-Proficiency Penalty: -2
Attacks / round: 3/2
Double-Specialized: Battle Axe (+3 to hit, +3 damage, 2 attacks / round)
Heavy Crossbow
Hand Axe

Thief Abilities (No Armor / Leather)
Pick Pockets: 95% / 90%
Open Locks: 92% / 92%
Find / Remove Traps: 80% / 80%
Move Silently: 88% / 78%
Hide in Shadows: 68% / 63%
Hear Noise: 30% / 30%
Climb Walls: 99% / 89%
Read Languages: 45% / 45%

Psionic Ability: 204
Psionic Strength: 102
Attack Strength: 102
Defense Strength: 102

Psionic Attack Modes
Psionic Blast – 20 points, 2″/4″/6″ range
Ego Whip – 7 points, 4″, 8″, 12″ range

Psionic Defense Modes
Thought Shield – 2 points
Mental Barrior – 3 points
Intellect Fortress – 8 points, 10′ radius

Psionic Devotions
Cell Adjustment – 1 point / hit point healed, touch range, max of 32 hit points / target
Domination – 3″ range, 5 points to initiate, 1 pt / HD / round to command target
Detection of Magic – 3 points / round, 3″ range, 50% chance to determine type of magic.

Psionic Science
Telekinesis – 3 points / round, 13″ range,1,650 cn weight

Languages: Dwarven, Gnome, Goblin, Kobold, Orcish, Common, Elf, Giant

Equipment of Note

  • Iron Armbands of the Emperor (Bracers of Defense – AC 2, Protection from Normal Missiles)
  • The Spirit of Ko-Gi (Battle Axe +3 made entirely of amber-coloured crystal with a faceted red stone at the tip and brocaded silk strips around the haft held in place by yellow silk cords. K0-Gi was a famous minstrel and is bound into the axe. Intelligence 16, Neutral alignment and has the following powers: Song of Fear (Fear spell) 1/day; Song of Glory (+1 to hit, immune to fear) 2/day. The axe sings by vibrating, and does so whenever in combat, even when not casting spells).
  • Battle Axe +2, +4 vs undead and negative material plane creatures
  • Potions in giant ant head potion bottles (extra healing, growth, healing)
  • Potions in “normal” vials (green dragon control, white dragon control, diminution, polymorph self)
  • Jade vial of “Return Life” potion. As raise dead spell if the victim has been dead less than 1 week. 1 dose left.
  • Ring of warmth
  • Durrogen’s Jade Ring – Blink as the spell for 6 rounds, takes 1 hour to recharge. +2 on all saving throws against poison and death magic. Weapon wielded in that hand burns with green fire for 1 turn 1/day on command, granting an additional +2 to hit and damage and the ability to strike ethereal and out of phase creatures.
  • Gauntlets of Dexterity (+1 Dex, +10% pick pockets and open locks)
  • Dagger +1, +2 vs magic users and enchanted creatures
  • Phanstern’s Cloak of Protection +2 (rich dark red)
  • Shield +1
  • Plate Mail +1
  • Gwaylar’s Blade – Longsword +1
  • Bag of Holding (2,500 cn)
  • Electrum Amulet – casts protection from good 3/day
  • Bandoleer of 7 throwing daggers – normal in melee, +2 to hit and damage thrown (used to be 8, one was lost)
  • Belt of the Phase Spider – yellow leather belt. “Graa” command phases wearer out (as a phase spider). “Yegraa” command phases wearer in.
  • 50′ Rope of Climbing (“Spider” command word)
  • Magic Rhinoceros Horn – any poisonous liquid poured into the horn will froth.