Players arguing of rule change.


Advice


I have an issue with some players not liking the official rule set on exp. They are arguing over solo exp being too... well s!!$ty. They are claiming is supports the splitting of the party all because they talked about doing coup de gras. The rouge bailed out on it due to fear of a magic trap. While he talked with the party leader about it, the oracle snuck back and killed the monster when out of sight and earshot of them. I gave the oracle solo exp for the kill due to no one else in the "combat" of it or even near it. The rest of the party got mad due to them being used to the home-brew rule of shared exp. I did tell everyone at the start of the new campaign that they would be switched to official rules. Was I wrong for the solo exp on the coup de gras?


You are the GM and you did state the rule set in use before game began, so no, you are not wrong with the solo award. If they persist, give them the option of going back to the old shared xp, but it will terminate the existing game, starting a new campaign with new characters. You have the right not to change horses mid stream after all. I have a similar issue with my current group wanting shared xp so everyone stays even, yet I feel that takes too much away from individuality. While team play is encouraged, finding a balance that doesn't take away from the individual is not easy, and awarding to the whole group what one player did solo could be viewed as a punishment for the individual player. As an alternative, offer the xp to the group, but then all loot goes to the individual player for that encounter? You are the GM and have to be fair, the players should respect your final decision, but if they can not then they should go else where.


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You are free to run your game however you like, but not sharing XP always leads to players kill-hogging in my experience.

The counterargument, which is that sharing XP causes players to be lazy and let all the others do the work for them, has never borne out, in my experience. In theory, people could do it, but in practice, nobody does.

You can always divide XP asymmetrically if you feel someone really overperformed or someone else really underperformed. That would at least be better than all-or-nothing.

Semi-tangengially, I personally refuse to give live updates on XP earned. There's no reason for people to obsess over the "score." I just keep a little sheet with a tally and disclose it when a milestone is hit (end of session, end of story arc, level up, etc).


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Where do you get that individual XP is official and split XP is a houserule? I'd say the opposite is true. The CRB says "At the end of each session, award XP to each PC that participated." and "Add up the XP values for each CR and then divide this total by the number of characters—each character earns an amount of XP equal to this number."

Why was the monster CdG'able in the first place?


You stated the rules and then did what you said that you would do, so on that score it is fine. However, your group being unhappy is an issue that I suggest you adjust for. A possible compromise can be found in the Downtime Rules under Earn XP - when P.C.s have missed a session and fallen behind, there is a quick-and-dirty way of catching up. Applying this for those who missed out on XP Encounters too might soften things, (e.g., in a subsequent session they have a quick scuffle in town that earns them higher XP than it normally would), especially when the XP is capped to the top in the Party. This way the benefit for the "leading" P.C. would only last for a short time and could be more about the in-game bragging rights of the Character. If your group knows that there is a net in place to keep things fair, (by that I mean opportunities to catch up if an individual attempts to race ahead), then they are likely to feel more comfortable.

@Derklord I think that the O.P. is referring to "solo XP" because only one P.C. was involved, that "shared XP" refers to their previous campaigns having everyone gaining XP at the same rate regardless of who participated in XP granting Encounters or not.


Benslayer, that wasn't my question; I understood that. I think the premise that the players are arguing against the agreed "we're using the official rules" is wrong, because as far as I can tell shared XP is the actual official rule. Although I don't know whether or not the Gm explicitly talked about using non-shared XP or not.

In general, if rules make the game less fun they're bad and should be changed, and there is no shame in changing rule mid-game if all agree on. It's a game, not a commercial contract where every changes requires a six-week notice and gets looked over by lawyers.


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Point of order: Why is XP being awarded for going back and coup-de-gracing the presumably-already-defeated-or-otherwise-overcome monster? Shouldn't have been accrued when the party defeated/overcame the monster in the first place?


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must suck to be a support buffer/debuffer in that game


If the monster was just casually sleeping and the party was planning out how to attack it as a group, then one member sneaks away and does it by themself, it's a selfish and risky thing to do, but it also earns a healthy solo XP reward.

If they party subdued the creature as a group, then the XP is split as soon as the creature is effectively beaten... such as being rendered helpless by the whole party. The player executing the coup de grace is not going to receive solo XP.

Solve all these issues with milestone leveling and only use XP for encounter building purposes.


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LordGreyscar wrote:
I have an issue with some players not liking the official rule set on exp.

The solution here is to get rid of XP as a leveling mechanic, thereby avoiding all of the associated annoyances attendant with being chained to a four-decade-old D&D mechanic.


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Slim Jim wrote:
LordGreyscar wrote:
I have an issue with some players not liking the official rule set on exp.
The solution here is to get rid of XP as a leveling mechanic, thereby avoiding all of the associated annoyances attendant with being chained to a four-decade-old D&D mechanic.

That is "a" solution. It is not necessarily "the" solution. Lots of tables enjoy using XP, and plenty of players don't assign an expiration date on perfectly usable mechanics.

Splitting the difference between this thread and yours, it's simple enough to simply keep track of XP at the table level and let folks who don't attend as many sessions accrue XP regardless--which is how pretty much every non-West-Marches table I've ever played Pathfinder at worked. But this is overkill for answering OP's question anyway.


Is it really a good idea to get ahead of the other characters in your group xp wise? I mean, if you pull ahead too much, your teammates are going to have a hard time adventuring with you, or the fights could be too easy for the character that pulled ahead (and the ahead character might complain about not getting enough treasure for their level). I think it would make much more sense for everyone to be the same level.


blahpers wrote:
Point of order: Why is XP being awarded for going back and coup-de-gracing the presumably-already-defeated-or-otherwise-overcome monster? Shouldn't have been accrued when the party defeated/overcame the monster in the first place?

Fully agree with Blahpers here. If there is no challenge in an encounter, then there is also no XP. If the party rendered said creature helpless, then it has already been defeated. Whether it dies or not is immaterial.

This is like not giving xp for creatures that flee at 10% of their HP. The creature is fleeing, how is that not defeated? If the GM has no plans on having the creature return to confront the PCs again before they leave the current set of encounters, it should be counted for xp as defeated. The same as if the players had used negotiation or disable device to remove an encounter.

As for solo xp...that leads to some players falling behind and making it difficult for the GM to balance encounters. This is something that should give a decent GM a headache. If that doesn't bother you at all... lets say I'd rather not be at your table.


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Even before I made the switch to milestone leveling, I used shared XP to keep everyone on the same level.

If you intentionally sneaked away to solo a monster, I will Baleful Polymorph you into something f!ck!ng useless in the following sessions... I don't tolerate Blue Falcons in the slightest at my table...


just wanted to point out.
i feel that if the oracle fought and defeated that monster alone and you use solo xp then he should get the xp.
but if that monster was defeated (left unconscious by spells \damage etc) by the party who then moved away in fear of a trap - they also helped defeated and should get part of the xp. it's not xp for killing a monster it's for defeating it. making a monster surrender or overcoming the threat in other way (allying with it?) should award xp as if defeating it.

Grand Lodge

I would look at whether each member of the party usually pull their weight, or not (and anything in between). Normally I don't use strict xp metrics, but if someone plays and does nothing, expecting others to do so, I could consider, well no progress for that player. I have seen enough lazy players that sometimes my patience is paper thin.

That said if it serves no purpose for the player to currently contribute, then I'm fine with the character staying behind, and I don't like much players being active for the sake of it. There's moments where it's intense, and others when it's a waiting game.


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Just drop XP and use milestones, if you need to. The division of XP shouldn't become a mini-game all of its own.


Tabletop isnt an MMO. Don't treat it like one.

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