Saturday, January 8, 2011

Dramatic Experience

I thought I'd open with a brief update.

As of this moment the campaigns I am running or plan to run are:
D&D-for-those-who-dislike-D&DWith my NJ crew. Once a month (hopefully), 4 Players plus myself as GM, 6-8 hour sessions. Creating an original world (in other words not my default milieu for this game). In truth I'm revamping and souping up another world I haven't used in many, many years. I'm looking forward to seeing new players unfamiliar with my changes to the game in a Sandbox/Anything Goes kind of world. Don't worry Dave, it'll still have a heavy dose of 'Awesome Anime Fantasy Adventure!'
Star TrekA few NY players. Once or twice a month if possible. Only 2 players confirmed and myself as GM. One of the players and I prefer 6-8 hour session whereas the other seems to like 4 hour. Gah. I can't imagine motivating myself to leave my apartment for a game that's going to last only 4 hours. We'll work something out I'm sure.

Right now we are looking at a Post-Star Trek:Nemesis setting, likely around 2391. The PCs are the crew of a Defiant Class vessel assigned to protect a Scientific Research Outpost in a newly explored region of space. Sometimes they will travel with the under-armed scout and research vessels to new planets or anomalies, sometimes they'll be needed back at the Outpost and I have a few other tricks up my sleave to keep things interesting.

In addition to these full campaigns I'm going to be doing some playtesting for my various RPG projects such as Aliens & Astrobases, Project X (no peeking!) and possibly even my D&D-for-those-who-dislike-D&D system. I've been developing that game for 25 years so I figure I might as well do something with it.

Here's a quick sample of the games Experience Point system:

Event - Awarded Points

Amazing Feat Accomplished
- 300 per feat
Challenge Bested - 200 per event
Creativity (Creative Problem Solving/Unusual Use of Ability/Spell/Weapon, Etc.) - 100 bonus
Dialogue, Amusing - 50 per line
Dialogue, Deep/Philosophical - 150 per chat
Dialogue, Plot Driven/Driving - 150 per chat
Enemies Defeated (Minor Enemies/Henchmen, 1-3) - 200 per fight
Enemies Defeated (Minor Enemies/Henchmen, 4-6) - 300 per fight
Enemies Defeated (Leader) - 400 per fight + 50 bonus for Hit Dice Over PC's Level
Enemies Defeated (Monstrous, large) - 600 per creature
Enemies Defeated (Monstrous, med) - 400 per creature
Enemies Defeated (Monstrous, small) - 200 per creature
Enemies Defeated (Magical/Supernatural/Special Abilities, 1-3) - 300 per fight
Enemies Defeated (Magical/Supernatural/Special Abilities, 4-6) - 400 per fight
Good Deed Accomplished - 100 bonus
Heroic Action, Selfless Act - 300 per event
Plot Development, Background - 200 per adventure
Plot Development, Story - 200 per adventure
Plot Secret Revealed - 300 per secret
Role-Playing in Character -200 bonus
Romantic Development - 150 per adventure
Teamwork - 250 per event per participant

This isn't the complete chart but it does give an idea of how my campaigns work and what gives you experience. You'll notice that fights don't do much. Well, that's a bit of an illusion since in a single session you could have multiple battles that really add up. Also, no XP is given for finding a magic item or gold. Disliked that since 1979. Why would you get Experience points for that. What did you learn other than 'look down'.

We used to end our sessions by going over XP but now its been much more fun to open the next session with it. The players each, one by one, go over all the stuff they did, fought and said in the previous adventure. Players vouch for each other and try to combine their efforts more.

Player 1: "OK, remember when I got that Orc Chieftain to talk about his people's dealings with the local Human tribe? He told us about the curse in the Burial Ground. That's Plot Secret Revealed right? That was the curse that the witch warned us about a while back."

Player 2: "Right and when you told he we were heading there to undo the curse he got very edgy..."

Player 1: "Yeah, yeah! But you and Steve spoke his particular Orc dialect and convinced him we were trying to help."

GM: "All true. Hmm...Ok, 150 for Plot Driven Dialog for Dan, Vinny and Steve. Dan, add another 300 for Plot Secret Revealed. Everyone also gets 250 points for Teamwork."

That's basically how it works at least. I'm always tweaking it and modifying it to better reflect our style of play.

Anyway, I'm off (as if that wasn't readily apparent)...

Barking Alien



  1. The Trek sounds like real fun. Post Nemesis I've never really pondered, but the setting might let you think in DS9 terms.

  2. That's a really cool idea for dealing with XP. Might have to try something like that. Thanks.

  3. What does "I am running for plan to run" mean?