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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Pixie in the Playground
     
    OrcBarbarianGirl

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    Default A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Okay, assume core D&D rules (3.5, I'm not familiar with 4th edition), or some other setting where characters become more powerful by killing things. Assume that the setting's 'DM' does not offer roleplaying or story XP. Most people will spend their lives at home as level 1s, or go up a level or two in war and come home. A few people decide to gamble their lives by becoming adventurers. They will fight things that have a chance of killing them (after all, you don't get xp for non-challenges). They will kill and kill, and most likely die very young, and certainly see friends killed. In the unlikely event that they survive long enough, they will become insanely powerful and wealthy.

    So who becomes an adventurer? Someone who's crazy, or someone with nothing to lose. And who can stop an adventurer? Someone who is at or above their level... or, if you're lucky, an army.

    Assume people understand how experience points work (approximately). They know that becoming an adventurer is an option-- just an insanely dangerous and unpleasant one. And they know that a mid- or high-level adventurer is extremely hard to stop.

    In other words, imagine if the DM didn't scale the power of the party's adversaries. At the early levels, you might fight a dragon (and die). At the later levels, there might literally be no one in the country who can take you on and win. Then imagine that all the parties out there are composed of individuals who behave like Player Characters.

    What do you see happening?

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Banned
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Well, I think many more people would become adventurers if you knew the gain/risk factor. It just isn't fun to be a commoner. Your skills are terrible and limited, your lifespan is almost equal to the amount of time it takes for something to attack the village, and your at the whim of anything with a level above you, or even on par. A cat is fully capable of ending you! One level in wizard, reading a book and learning a few words could make you more powerful at just about anything, a barbarian is more than 4 times heartier than you! Staying home is almost a lose lose situation, anyone who killed a few rats, sang a few songs, read a few books is already better than you.

    On the other hand, if most groups of adventurers had the personalities of the people I've played with. I'd almost rather be eaten by the orc than let those sociopaths anywhere near my town or me.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by BarbarianNina View Post
    So who becomes an adventurer?
    i'll refer onlt to this question, since it affects many other things: i imagine many wouldn't become an adventurer for the sole reason of becoming powerful, despite the chance of death, but rather due to:
    a) circumstances (forced to fight against the goblin raiders, slaves of the orcs, lost in the wilderness, destiny thrust upon you and the like)
    b) they have a purpose (avenge the death of parents, a paladin believing in spreading good and combating evil. a wizard seekingto reclaim the secrets of a lost culture, a ranger who seeks to make their wood safe, someone who lost all his wealth/ familiy/ title/ loved one and seek to reclaim it. anyone seeking to save the village/ country/ world and so on)

    i expect these to be the vast majority of adventurers. you can still call them crazy, but not just for gaining power. true- some people play for getting more powerful, but quite a few also seek to build a story, and motivation is a big part of that.

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    Titan in the Playground
     
    Tyndmyr's Avatar

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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by Righteous Doggy View Post
    Well, I think many more people would become adventurers if you knew the gain/risk factor. It just isn't fun to be a commoner. Your skills are terrible and limited, your lifespan is almost equal to the amount of time it takes for something to attack the village, and your at the whim of anything with a level above you, or even on par. A cat is fully capable of ending you!
    Admittedly, a cat ending a commoner would be...pretty unlikely.

    The reward is great, but the risk is...notable. Not many adventurers make it to level 20. And there's always the "one more level..." factor. I don't think many people would take such risks. I mean, *I* would, but then, I'm the kind of person who considers thermite a valid christmas present.

    A world run by adventurers? Well, there'd be lots of taverns.
    Last edited by Tyndmyr; 2012-05-14 at 06:23 AM.

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    Firbolg in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    If you couldn't level except through potentially-lethal combat, the world would be stultified because 98-99% of the population would be restricted to 4 ranks in any given skill. Agriculture beyond subsistence would be unlikely, crafts limited to basic items. Medical care, construction, all sciences and advanced studies, all arts, GONE. An adventurer could learn such things, but wouldn't have enough time to apply them to others' benefit. Essentially, civilization could not exist.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Not quite. Even real savants today wouldn't have more than 4/5 ranks plus Skill Focus. For example, Einstein's skill at science has been calculated out as having 6 ranks (as truly exceptional people in real life tend to be 2nd or 3rd level), with skill focus and access to several types of masterwork tools. I don't say that to mean you're wrong about the tech level being stagnant, because I think it would be. It's just that that reason doesn't quite fit the mechanics of the game.


    As far as the actual question, A world where people knew about experience would result in many more people going out and getting in fights. Even non-lethal fights can grant XP for victory in most cases...and I can imagine fight club type places popping up everywhere for and by the people that want to beef up before wandering into the world-or just because adventurers are tougher anyway. That level of Barb would come in handy on the farm-a mule's kick is crippling to most people, but a farmer with a level of Barb could shrug it off.

    TL/DR, I think that class levels would become much more common, even among 'commoners'.
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Y'know….

    This post inspired me.

    I'm going to make an Elemental Plane of Adventurers, where everyone is an adventurer or a monster.

    Why? cause it would probably make more sense than actual DnD.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Raziere View Post
    Y'know….

    This post inspired me.

    I'm going to make an Elemental Plane of Adventurers, where everyone is an adventurer or a monster.

    Why? cause it would probably make more sense than actual DnD.
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    SwashbucklerGuy

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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    If you took PC backstories or even the implied backstories of commoner NPCs (what is more commonplace than 'village ransacked by orcs, all relatives killed, one of a few survivors who fought back bravely, but enslaved by orcs, toiled in mines, escaped'?), and instead ran them as a module for 1st level PCs, they'd likely level up.

    For some reason (because the game starts at 1st level; because they're just NPCs), they didn't gain any meaningful XP for any of that backstory stuff. Then, suddenly, even if their first job is to kill 2d4 rats in a basement, the XP starts flowing. There seems to suddenly come a point at which they say 'No more the victim! I am now the master of my own fate!' and events which previously buffeted them around haplessly now become learning experiences. Which is to say, they're PCs. It's a bit circular, I know.

  10. - Top - End - #10
    Colossus in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by Winds View Post
    Not quite. Even real savants today wouldn't have more than 4/5 ranks plus Skill Focus. For example, Einstein's skill at science has been calculated out as having 6 ranks (as truly exceptional people in real life tend to be 2nd or 3rd level), with skill focus and access to several types of masterwork tools. I don't say that to mean you're wrong about the tech level being stagnant, because I think it would be. It's just that that reason doesn't quite fit the mechanics of the game.
    Even the alexandrian site theory that argued that real life people tend not to go very high, put Einstein at 5th level, not 3rd.

    And that's received quite a bit of criticism for picking and choosing examples that fitted their point while ignoring those that didn't.

    As to why commoner characters might not adventure- they may have been saddled with a horrible statline- all 10s and 11s, or 13 as their best stat.
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by Winds View Post
    As far as the actual question, A world where people knew about experience would result in many more people going out and getting in fights. Even non-lethal fights can grant XP for victory in most cases...and I can imagine fight club type places popping up everywhere for and by the people that want to beef up before wandering into the world-or just because adventurers are tougher anyway. That level of Barb would come in handy on the farm-a mule's kick is crippling to most people, but a farmer with a level of Barb could shrug it off.
    Gives "going to the gym" a whole new meaning.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    The theory holds up well enough for my purpose- IE, that you don't need demigods sitting around in the city to have technical advancement.


    And yes, gyms under that idea would be...interesting.
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    I tend to view the word Adventurer as a meta-construct. Are all your PCs genre savvy ?

    I'm an Adventurer is a very cliched back-story.
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  14. - Top - End - #14
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    I imagine evil people would start adventuring like mad, and those that succeeded would start hunting down and killing all the other people trying to reach their level, until only they are powerful. The world would be ruled by psychopaths in short order.

    People already do this in real life, except instead of killling monsters, they use the law and knowledge and manipulation to become extremely rich and powerful, then use those riches and power to keep other people from getting as rich and powerful as them.

    Just google psychopathy and spend a few hours or days reading all the links that pop up. You'll have a brand new view of real life.

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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by CGforever! View Post
    I imagine evil people would start adventuring like mad, and those that succeeded would start hunting down and killing all the other people trying to reach their level, until only they are powerful. The world would be ruled by psychopaths in short order.
    And suddenly you have a real-life plot hook!
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cirrylius View Post
    That's how wizards beta test their new animals. If it survives Australia, it's a go. Which in hindsight explains a LOT about Australia.

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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by hamishspence View Post
    Even the alexandrian site theory that argued that real life people tend not to go very high, put Einstein at 5th level, not 3rd.

    And that's received quite a bit of criticism for picking and choosing examples that fitted their point while ignoring those that didn't.

    As to why commoner characters might not adventure- they may have been saddled with a horrible statline- all 10s and 11s, or 13 as their best stat.
    Thank you, I thought I was going to have to bust out the proofs that he didn't know what he was talking about, and literally may not have read the books yet again.

    Adventurer's like risk. I suspect the biggest change in this world is an increased acceptance of risk in return for reward. So, more megavillains, more deals with the devil, more heroic savings of the world. In short, a world that is to D&D what D&D is to our world. Also, I want to live there.

  17. - Top - End - #17
    Orc in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Well, a world run by adventurers... You'd have some very interesting countries.

    A Necromantic Utopia, for example. Wizards would do crazy things like create massive demiplane cities. Demiplanes within demiplanes as parts of the city. Floating architecture, massive expanses of trees naturally growing into buildings if you've got epic druids, that sort of thing.

    The world would be much more interesting.
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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by Loxagn View Post
    Well, a world run by adventurers... You'd have some very interesting countries.

    A Necromantic Utopia, for example. Wizards would do crazy things like create massive demiplane cities. Demiplanes within demiplanes as parts of the city. Floating architecture, massive expanses of trees naturally growing into buildings if you've got epic druids, that sort of thing.

    The world would be much more interesting.
    I think more than interesting countries, you'd have interesting tribes centered around a handful of adventurers each. There would be token wars between tribes where the adventurers faced off in almost exclusive party duels.

    Given the number of party conflict threads that arise, civil war in the tribes would be common, as well as outcast adventurers who are simply looking to destroy as much as they can. If any of these became powerful enough, then maybe we could see a coalition of tribes against them, or maybe they enjoy a short tyrannical rule before being killed by a desperate band of lower level adventurers.

    It would be chaos.

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    Ogre in the Playground
     
    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by Rorrik View Post
    It would be chaosglorious.
    Fixed that for you.
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    Goblin

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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Probably some akin to certain deconstructions of superhero genre like Irredeemable, Black Summer or Supergod, probably the Authority too, only more fantasy and more medival. Once heroes start getting terribly powerful, some of them just run rampaging, commiting horrible acts either in the name of good or evil, some try to stop them, corrateral damage and destruction ends in many death, possibly even falls of entire kingdoms. Once people get into epic levels, especially casters, things goes to hell and back on planetary scale (Seriously, Supergod is basically what happens when a bunch of equivalents of epic level PrCPCs gets into a showdown).

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    Bugbear in the Playground
     
    AssassinGuy

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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    Quote Originally Posted by Thrawn183 View Post
    Fixed that for you.
    Thank you much. My bad.

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    Ogre in the Playground
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    Default Re: A world run by crazy adventurers...

    What happens?

    There'd be no more stray animals, that's for sure! (Even rats and bugs are worth some XP at low levels. Bring on the bag o' rats!)
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