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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Treating XP like GP.

    Hello again. I have noticed that sometimes a party member may get more XP than the others either because it did a solo quest at some point or because it solely handed a bunch of minions without the help of other party members. While this may be okay, after some point, it can become frustrating for the other party members, especially if they are jealous and especially if that party member gains a level or two above the rest of the party. Moreover, it can become difficult for the DM to offer balanced combat encounters if the party members have different levels. Finally, when a newbie comes and joins the party, I find it both overwhelming and unfair to have him/her jump right away to the level of the rest of the party; I think that, maybe, it is better for him/her if he/she starts (for example) from the beginning of each tier. That way, that player will learn the game and the tier without becoming totally overwhelmed and the rest party members won't feel that the newcomer "cheated" his/her way up to their level while they become tired to achieve the same.

    What I really suggest is to treat the XP budget the party wins from encounters like treasure. Like gold pieces. That way, while theoretically everybody takes an even amount of everything, practically the party can share the treasure-XP any way they really like. So, a player who is (let's say) 3 levels higher than the rest of the party can take no XP at all (if the party chooses so) or very few XP while a character who is (let's say) 2 levels below the average party member can take all the XP (if the party chooses so) or a lot of XP. The XP can be stored to a hypothetical party pool for later usage (that means you just collect XP to your party pool and take away the specific amount you need when you level up, for example) if needed so but it cannot be stolen by any means because it is not a real treasure.

    If you wish, you can also give some sort of appearance to the XP. It appears like tiny light blue floating orbs that you can absorb them on touch and appear above the body of the defeated creature. Of course, this make the game even more gamey, so you may consider that XP are a completely mental thing.

    Of course, some players may find this system too unfair or they may believe it doesn't reward the good play.
    Post if you wish to ask about Ruins & Raiders. I do not answer to PMs anymore.

  2. - Top - End - #2
    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Mar 2020

    Default Re: Treating XP like GP.

    As long as everyone agrees to it, it's all good.

    It makes sense; look at stories and shows, there's often one or two people above the rest in a party and a newbie playing catch up. Lord of the Rings had Gandalf as the highest level guy, Legolas, Gimli, Boromir and Aragorn as experienced adventurers, and the hobbits as the low-level party members. And yet each had their role - the higher level ones mentored and protected the lower levels, while the lower levels offered support, contributed to battles through cleverness and helped give RP hooks for the higher level members. The movies show the hobbits being trained up on several occasions - maybe something like this can be translated into D&D, where a higher level party member can give up time and XP to transfer it to another. I'd reward them in some way of course - maybe they find a nice magical item later or news of their mentoring gets out and opens up opportunities for them.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Treating XP like GP.

    Quote Originally Posted by +5 Vorpal Bunny View Post
    As long as everyone agrees to it, it's all good.

    It makes sense; look at stories and shows, there's often one or two people above the rest in a party and a newbie playing catch up. Lord of the Rings had Gandalf as the highest level guy, Legolas, Gimli, Boromir and Aragorn as experienced adventurers, and the hobbits as the low-level party members. And yet each had their role - the higher level ones mentored and protected the lower levels, while the lower levels offered support, contributed to battles through cleverness and helped give RP hooks for the higher level members. The movies show the hobbits being trained up on several occasions - maybe something like this can be translated into D&D, where a higher level party member can give up time and XP to transfer it to another. I'd reward them in some way of course - maybe they find a nice magical item later or news of their mentoring gets out and opens up opportunities for them.
    I wouldn't suggest a magic item as a reward (not a combat item at least) because that will open the gap once again (the very same gap we just managed to close by giving most of the XP to the lower levels). I suggest other type of rewards that encourage role-playing, much like those news of their mentoring that you mentioned.
    Post if you wish to ask about Ruins & Raiders. I do not answer to PMs anymore.

  4. - Top - End - #4
    Titan in the Playground
     
    Lizardfolk

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    Oct 2010
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    Default Re: Treating XP like GP.

    Why use XP at all? I have never DM'd with XP, and I have rarely been a player in a game with XP. Just have everyone level up together, seems pretty simple.
    Quote Originally Posted by The Glyphstone View Post
    Vibranium: If it was on the periodic table, its chemical symbol would be "Bs".

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Treating XP like GP.

    Quote Originally Posted by Tvtyrant View Post
    Why use XP at all? I have never DM'd with XP, and I have rarely been a player in a game with XP. Just have everyone level up together, seems pretty simple.
    I was doing what you suggest (DMing without XP and having everyone leveling up together after the dungeon or the adventure or whatever) but it has its issues too. It doesn't encourage the players to be clever, to try more, to do their best because, in the end, they will get the same reward with the player who did nothing and with the one who did everything. I do not say I like that way of thinking but, according both to my experience and to D&D tales I have heard of, that way of thinking is more common that you may imagine.
    Post if you wish to ask about Ruins & Raiders. I do not answer to PMs anymore.

  6. - Top - End - #6
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    tcrudisi's Avatar

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    Default Re: Treating XP like GP.

    Quote Originally Posted by ARTHAN View Post
    I was doing what you suggest (DMing without XP and having everyone leveling up together after the dungeon or the adventure or whatever) but it has its issues too. It doesn't encourage the players to be clever, to try more, to do their best because, in the end, they will get the same reward with the player who did nothing and with the one who did everything.
    I politely disagree. In my experience, you don't need a big reward for those players. It can range from nothing (just doing something awesome is usually a reward in itself!) to something very small (perhaps a new friend or ally that responds favorably to the player but offers very little outside being able to do things behind the scenes or perhaps aiding the player outside of combat with a +2 to their roll). It doesn't have to be xp at all. I have personally found that having the players at different levels creates more problems than it solves. I even go so far as to award xp to players who did not show up so that everyone remains the same level.

    I also listen to the table as a whole. If I gave a player an ally but I hear other players saying, "He convinced the Bowser to just hand over the princess after threatening him with a blue turtle shell! The princess should be able to do more than just get captured again!" then I'll agree, and bump up her capabilities some. Dare I say, giving her the ability to hover in the air for a while after jumping? In that way, I actually let the table decide how good their rewards are. But I personally like the rule of cool. Obviously you are your own DM. Do what makes you and your table happy. If they prefer your method, then it ain't wrong.
    Thank you Ceika for the wonderful Avatar avatar!

  7. - Top - End - #7
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Treating XP like GP.

    Quote Originally Posted by tcrudisi View Post
    I have personally found that having the players at different levels creates more problems than it solves. I even go so far as to award xp to players who did not show up so that everyone remains the same level.
    I know it creates problems and that's why I introduce this new rule to the table (in order to make things equal again without becoming unfair to my rewards). I have also awarded XP to players who were absent so everyone is the same level and happy but I hate when I do this because it is unfair and because many players abuse it. The "why to show up to the session while I can sit home and play video games since I am going to get XP anyway" mentality is a really dangerous foe of every DM and should not be taken lightly...
    Post if you wish to ask about Ruins & Raiders. I do not answer to PMs anymore.

  8. - Top - End - #8
    Ogre in the Playground
     
    Anxe's Avatar

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    Default Re: Treating XP like GP.

    If you have players who aren't showing up because they'd rather play video games than play D&D with you then you probably should just not play with them.

  9. - Top - End - #9
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    ClericGuy

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    Default Re: Treating XP like GP.

    Quote Originally Posted by Anxe View Post
    If you have players who aren't showing up because they'd rather play video games than play D&D with you then you probably should just not play with them.
    That's easy, if you have plenty of players, but if you have just, let's say, 4 people around the table you have to do something to keep them all interested...
    Post if you wish to ask about Ruins & Raiders. I do not answer to PMs anymore.

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