Monday, 18 May 2015

I fixed low monster xp for B/X style games

Monsters don't give much experience points in earlier editions and similacrum systems (OSR) because the point of the game is treasures and exploration. Generally if you want to kill tons of monsters you should choose a game with less deadly (early levels) combat and better support for monster killing.

There are cheap and quick fixes for character survival; max HP at first level, dead at -X instead of zero HP, starting HP equals to CON score etc. These fixes give characters few extra hits to survive but don't change the advancement.

Here comes XP multipliers for monsters!

So, when characters kill monsters in creative or cool ways, X2.

When they kill monsters in sneaky ways, X3.

When they survive the combat uninjured, X5.

The point is to make fights rewarding and to encourage players to do everything else than roll dice taking turns (and propably die - also boring).

Avoiding monsters gives normal monster XP, so spotting them and getting around them is still a reward. Now you can concider the risks: should you sneak past them (X1 XP) or try to maul them with cunning and survive unharmed (X5 XP).

True, if you engage many fights you will get more XP than default. You are more likely to lose those extra experience points, though. With your character's life!

I have to admit I am a little loose on handing experience points. I don't have months to see players' characters to grow in power, and they will be dead or retired at some point anyways.

Once I even gave solid 10x for all monster XP for more heroic and combat oriented game! It's all about what you want from your campaign and what will be the focus. The focus of the campaign is a good start to determine the source for XP.

One-shots and adventure module gaming RAW is fine. In that kind of game experience is not numbers on the paper (is it ever only that) but the challenge and the story for the players to have fun with.

Well, that's how I roll.