Thanks, I didn’t (and still don’t fully) understand what a Tool or Tool proficiency was. I’m still learning 5E
The lifepath character generation system I have now is a bit different from the old one in several ways. One is that as you make your character you get kind of abstract points that you distribute to specific things when you are done. This was in part to make the whole process move a lot faster, but it also means that whatever you end up with will make more sense. In other words, you wouldn’t pick up skills, feats or kit at age 17 during your apprenticeship as a smith, you’d gain the potential of something which you would “spend” later when your character is finished (maybe at age 25). So you can pick whatever makes sense to you at that point, based on whatever other jobs you had.
And yes, I think the Specializations in Codex Ingenium line up fairly well with the “Backgrounds” in 5E.
Right now I’m in the process of removing as much of the 3.X stuff as I can, the only limitation to that is to make sure all the books line up so that things don’t get out of synch.