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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Halfling in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jul 2009

    Default PbtA Hack, Awarding XP Idea Input

    I'm making a Powered by the Apocalypse hack, and have devised a system for awarding XP that I'd like input on.

    It's based on the idea of the Five-Man Band. Each member of a group has a particular dynamic with the rest, filling one of five broad roles.

    The Leader leads.
    The Lancer contrasts leader in some major way.
    The Big Guy is tough and powerful.
    The Smart Guy is the planner.
    The Heart keeps the team together.

    If you want more, go look it up on Tvtropes.

    My idea is assigning each PC one of those roles, and having XP be awarded based on living up to your role.

    The Leader- When the party completes a quest, the other members besides the Leader gain XP.
    The Lancer- When you succeed when the Leader fails/fill a gap in the Leader's plan/react to something the Leader didn't forsee/etc. The other party members gain XP. (I need to fine-tune this one the most.)
    The Big Guy- When you single-handedly defeat an enemy or solve a problem with a single show of power in one roll, the other party members gain XP.
    The Smart Guy- When you propose a plan or course of action, any other party member who acts on it gains XP.
    The Heart- When you solve a problem between party members, the other members involved gain XP. At the end of each session, the lowest level party member(s) gain XP.

    Then I prepared a few extra roles in case of more-than-five player games, or players like that one guy who can't make it to every session.

    The Sixth Ranger- Whenever you are granted XP by another role's move, that party member also gains XP themselves, if applicable.
    The Mentor- At the end of each session, all other party members gain XP.
    The Tagalong- Whenever you are saved from danger, the party member who saved you gains XP. Whenever you aid or assist another party member, that party member gains XP.

    Whenever a player joins or leaves, or whenever everyone feels the dynamic between the party has changed significantly, roles are re-assigned.

    Does this system sound like it works? Are there any major or minor flaws you guys see that I don't?

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Bugbear in the Playground
    Join Date
    Jul 2018

    Default Re: PbtA Hack, Awarding XP Idea Input

    This is an interesting idea, but I feel like it's....conceptually odd to have the "reward" for playing to type be that everyone else gets XP. I get that you're trying to encourage a party-centric feel for this hack, but I think you'll be better-served if you adjust it to address both personal motives (and therefore the char's own XP) as well as group motives (and therefore group XP).

    One possible option: Have each trope include a "personal role" move and a "group role" move, defined primarily by how they create future narratives. That is, your "personal role" move grants XP when you take an opportunity to actively fill your personal role, and others follow in your wake--creating a situation, rather than responding to it. For the Lancer, as an example, the personal move could be something like "challenge the authority of a friend" or "show off your superiority." The group move would then be you responding to a situation, reactively filling your role by receiving an opportunity from an ally. Again using the Lancer, it could be "save a friend in the nick of time with your prodigious skill" or "reveal the truth you knew all along."

    This way, you have players both actively seeking opportunities, and looking to provide opportunities to others as well.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Ogre in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2015

    Default Re: PbtA Hack, Awarding XP Idea Input

    Another way to do it is instead of shifting the XP around shift the spotlight.

    The simplest example is the Leader who gets XP when their plan lets someone else shin. ... Of course I'm not sure how to define that in game terms. Let me try the Big Guy, instead of getting XP for defeating a big enemy you get XP for defending an ally or buying time for some other part of the plan to be completed. And an idea for a smart one popped into my head.

    When you give another PC advice on how to approach a situation, roll+sharp:
    On 10+ they hold 3 and you gain 1XP if they tell you how it went later.
    On 7-9 they hold 1.
    On -6 [something bad]
    They may spend hold one-for-one to: [options]

    So that will need some additional work but I think the basics are there. You get XP for making the other characters look good in a way that is appropriate to your character. Hopefully playing off both the archetypes and the group dynamic as you want.

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