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  1. #1
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    Player rewards in RPG

    > How does one structure a game that pleases the players without the old
    > familiar leveling up as a neccesary reward?



    By offering other rewards. Players like rewards that are based on
    rules, like experience points, levels, and challenge ratings. Everything
    else feels too much like GM`s fiat. Also players like options... the act of
    choosing and getting a meaningful result based (only) on their own choices.
    Feats, classes, skill points, etc. provide for this.

    However, just because it`s the only reward system used in D&D doesn`t mean
    it`s the only reward system possible. For a d20 superhero game, one player
    suggested, for example, that instead of experience points I hand out skill
    points. This actually worked rather well for my game.

    Another game I`ve seen allows elves to use a Grief score. It`s a cool stat
    that helps a lot of stuff, including magic, but each use potentially raises
    the Grief. This is a really good thing until you reach 10 at which point
    the character is effectively an NPC. Laments allowed you to put off Grief
    increases. Nice touch.

    The point is that players like rewards based on rules, like d20, but the
    rules that d20 use for rewards are not the only ones possible. Far from
    it. The study of reward systems in role playing games fascinate me.

  2. #2
    Senior Member RaspK_FOG's Avatar
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    Actually, the d20 System does not point out any specific award as necessary or better than any other; in fact, the System itself provides no grounds for any kind of award!

    What people fail to realise is that the fact that the d20 System was built in order to create the new edition of D&D has nothing to do with the ability of the system to achieve one thing or another; most particularly, the very foundation of the system are these 3 principles:
    1. the 6 ability scores we all know,
    2. rolling a d20 for all resolution rolls and having the result of the roll modified by a number of integers,
    3. and that rolling higher is better.
    These have been pointed out in an article on the Dragon magazine, actually, by one of the system's very authors.

    Now, one can grant any sort of award in d20; you just have to implement a rule for it, that's all.

  3. #3
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    As stated in the other thread, BR is excellently positioned to take advantage of alternate rewards:

    - bonuses added towards rule checks, or agitate checks, or domain attitude, when needed. Even bonus RP for adventures, to increase bloodline, as the character is now more (in)famous and heroic (villainous). Those rewards are already there, other than the treasure and the xp.

    Not to mention the possibility of bloodtheft... the garnering of an advantageous marriage to produce an heir, gaining an alliance, or the favour of a realm spell casting wizard/priest.

    Skill points can be useful - I allow some training for skill points on occasion, and also training for hp, like old BR used to (although I also bring in lots of critters that permanently drain HP as well, so it balances out).

  4. #4
    Quote Originally Posted by Birthright-L
    > How does one structure a game that pleases the players without the old familiar leveling up as a neccesary reward?
    Play GURPS.

    The only reason to play D&D is so you can level up etc. If your story isn't about a bunch of guys who go from common man to demi-gods find another system to use.

  5. #5
    Site Moderator kgauck's Avatar
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    Is this because D&D creates a set of expectations of the game being only about the progress from common man to demi-god, or because its so bad at doing anything else? Why can't you play D&D with a set of expectations that character progress will happen at a Gurps pace?

  6. #6
    Senior Member RaspK_FOG's Avatar
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    The thing is that people fail to realise that, while D&D is all becoming an individual of epic proportions (NOTE: epic as in the lyrical context, not the 21st-and-above-level), it does not necessarily have to be like *SNAP*!

  7. #7
    Quote Originally Posted by kgauck
    Is this because D&D creates a set of expectations of the game being only about the progress from common man to demi-god, or because its so bad at doing anything else? Why can't you play D&D with a set of expectations that character progress will happen at a Gurps pace?
    the later.

    Here is an example. D&D has no rules for things like alcoholism or other addictions. Generally speaking if you want 'character and personality' you strap it on after you generate the numbers. A fighter is a fighter is a fighter in D&D.

    With say GURPS, those sorts of things directly impact the numbers by providing you advantages/disads to buy with points (disads having a negative cost).

    This lack tends to imply that the traditional dungeon bash of kicking in doors, killing monsters and taking their stuff is what D&D is all about. And in truth if that is what you really want to do, then go play WOW.

  8. #8
    Senior Member RaspK_FOG's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cutenfluffy
    And in truth if that is what you really want to do, then go play WOW.
    OK, you should know better than to utter that last bit... That's actually flaming you know, and I want stand for it, not even if I like "real" roleplaying.

    And, no, it just isn't any worse than most legends that never presented main characters as alcoholics or what not; in fact, even your assessment is wrong because there is a problem to what most people perceive in things: you want something that is not already there? Great, just plug it in! Nobody told you not to, they just did not provide you with the tools from the start...

  9. #9
    Birthright Developer irdeggman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cutenfluffy
    the later.

    Here is an example. D&D has no rules for things like alcoholism or other addictions.
    In the Book of Vile Darkness and Unearthed Arcana drug addiction and alcoholism is addressed. It is not, however, core rule locked - whcih means that if a group wants to incorporate it into their game they can, they are not forced to. There are also many 3rd party books to choose from that have pretty much any type of addiction or drug rules you can imagine in various amounts of "detail".

    That is the "strength" of D&D - it is highly adaptable within its confines.

    Earlier editions were not, but 3.x is very "open" and adaptable.

    The major weakness that some may perceive is that the entire system is designed around an incremental increase in abilities (by this I mean skills as well) that are descrete and not fluid. That is to say that at certain points "everything" kicks in and not something like a gradual increase that a lot of other systems use.
    Duane Eggert

  10. #10
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    On 10/5/06, cutenfluffy <brnetboard@birthright.net> wrote:
    > This lack tends to imply that the traditional dungeon bash of kicking in doors, killing
    > monsters and taking their stuff is what D&D is all about. And in truth if that is what you
    > really want to do, then go play WOW.

    That`s so cute. You just registered and you`re already trolling and
    telling people that they play wrong and bad, and your way is better
    than theirs.

    Could somebody ban this guy?

    --
    Daniel McSorley

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