Experience Gain in nWoD 2.0 - An analysis and shit


  • Pitcrew

    Ok, so I decided to take a look at my personal experience (ha) as a strictly player on a nWoD Game. On Eldritch, I have had an approved vampire PC since August 11. At this moment he has 42 XP, or 210 beats.

    10 xp (50 beats) came at character creation. Since then, here is the breakdown of his gains:

    • ST Rewards - 3.6 (18 beats)
    • PRP Participation - .6 XP (3 beats)
    • Aspirations 2.2 XP (11 beats)
    • Conditions .8 XP (4 beats)
    • Breaking points .2 XP (1 beat)
    • Miscelaneous Rewards - .2 XP (1 beat)
      *Auto XP Gain - 24.4 XP (122 beats)

    So from this you can see that, for me at least, who has run I believe 7 scenes and played in 2, I have made the vast majority of my XP from simple time. Yes I realize my Conditon XP is low, and I do have 5 unresolved conditons at present, but even then that is just another 1 XP.

    Now, what the fuck can we learn from this?


  • Admin

    That games which reward XP automatically and allow alts encourage the creation of sleeper PCs who sit there and soak up XP? It's a known tactic. There were people on TR who had been doing that for ages, just in case they felt like playing a Vampire or whatever, so the character would be ready to go the moment they wished it.

    It's not a bad thing. Or a good thing. It's just a thing.


  • Pitcrew

    One of the things I often wonder (not for Eldritch, that ship has sailed at least for the nonce) if it would be possible to incorporate many different experience-gaining types in a lesser capacity. This requires a few things:

    1. You out an XP limit on how much you can gain per [whatever time interval you want].
    2. You determinethe ways in which people can and have gained XP in past games,
    3. Determine how much XP each method nets you and a separate, smaller ceiling for each method.

    (e.g. if the general Xp ceiling is 2 experiences per week, maybe you can only get up to 5 beats from votes, which means that yes, you can hold large events for votes, but there's only so far that that can take you, week to week. I probably would NOT make each vote be worth a beat. I would probably rather go with 5 votes = 1 beat. Yes, this sometimes generates a type of scene and roleplay some people don't like--but plenty of others do.)

    This is kind of what RfK did, from what I gather, incorporating votes/noms/squees or whatever, plus conditions, aspirations, plot xp, etc. They just didn't use automatic XP.

    As long as the ceiling was reachable on an interval-to-interval basis, this might help bridge the gap between how different types of players work.

    And you can use automatic XP to bridge the gap between newcomers and oldbies, making it a higher award depending on when in the game's lifespan the character comes in.



  • I mean, yes, the amount of xp gain on Eldritch seems to run a bit on the high side, but if we were to make it lower, people would scream and bitch that the 'dinosaurs' are outdoing them in everything (which is kind of laughable since we don't actually have any 'dinosaurs'). XP gain is one of those delicate balancing games where nobody really wins. There are some people who still complain that xp gain isn't fast enough, there are some people who complain it's too fast. Mostly, people just kind of roll with it.

    What can you do? If you take away passive gains, then the people who can be on all the time end up being your monstrous xp people, or the ones who can sit there and hammer out scenes non-stop. If you make it too fast, then the plots become laughably easy or you have to create something monstrous. There is no best answer, only decent answers for available situations.

    But note! There is also an xp cap, and auto-gains diminish over time. There are already in-system compromises.

    Edit to Add: For posterity, I'm not a believer in 'xp equality'. I absolutely believe there -should- be an xp-based hierarchy in things, because if everyone is equal, then nobody takes anybody seriously. WoD is a game set up for those kind of hierarchies in all but, maybe, werewolf, and even then you have those packs that you just don't fuck with, tribal elders, etc. So take that for what it is.


  • Politics

    I've said it before, but RfK's system is now my preference. It rewarded people for "doing shit," even coffee/bar RP. What you got from that kind of RP got capped at 7 beats per week, so you needed to go and do other kinds of scenes (thematic, events, etc.) or resolve conditions and aspirations to get more beats.

    The most substantial part was being responsible for claiming your own beats. You felt like you had control, and that was important too. I wrote my beat-claims up like they were journal entries, which amused staff more than once. The beat-claims also served as a good way to figure out what the fuck happened last week.

    Yeah, it was like report-writing -- except it wasn't. You could do whatever you want, as long as staff had some idea that your claim was legit and that the RP actually happened.

    I really miss that part about RfK. I probably miss it the most.



  • Such a thing would be about as much of a waste of time for me as writing out a BG.
    I am not a funny writer.
    People are not interested in what I am interested in.


  • Admin

    I think @Ganymede's point was the write-up didn't need to be funny or original, maybe just a tiny blurb showing there was actual RP involved. She just chose to put more into it, but she didn't have to. So you wouldn't have had to either, it's just a perk.


  • Pitcrew

    @Ganymede said:

    I've said it before, but RfK's system is now my preference. It rewarded people for "doing shit," even coffee/bar RP. What you got from that kind of RP got capped at 7 beats per week, so you needed to go and do other kinds of scenes (thematic, events, etc.) or resolve conditions and aspirations to get more beats.

    The most substantial part was being responsible for claiming your own beats. You felt like you had control, and that was important too. I wrote my beat-claims up like they were journal entries, which amused staff more than once. The beat-claims also served as a good way to figure out what the fuck happened last week.

    Yeah, it was like report-writing -- except it wasn't. You could do whatever you want, as long as staff had some idea that your claim was legit and that the RP actually happened.

    I really miss that part about RfK. I probably miss it the most.

    I loved RfK's experience system. It was fantastic, even when I didn't claim all the beats that I was technically entitled to some weeks. And I also wasn't a particularly funny writer, but I could use the +beats as kind of a quick tracker of what my character and done, who they'd met, what happened, when I might otherwise forget it.


  • Politics

    @Arkandel said:

    I think @Ganymede's point was the write-up didn't need to be funny or original, maybe just a tiny blurb showing there was actual RP involved. She just chose to put more into it, but she didn't have to. So you wouldn't have had to either, it's just a perk.

    Right. You could write this:

    Beat (Scene): Scene w/ Nora and Kelly at Elysium.

    Or, you could write this:

    Beat (Scene): "It was a terrible idea to bring Kelly to Elysium. Still too young. Turned to say something to Nora, and the girl gave me daggers. Bloody daggers! But what to do? Damned silly girl will get herself killed if people don't recognize her as mine. Or get me killed, the little sprat."


  • Coder

    @Derp said:

    I mean, yes, the amount of xp gain on Eldritch seems to run a bit on the high side, but if we were to make it lower, people would scream and bitch that the 'dinosaurs' are outdoing them in everything (which is kind of laughable since we don't actually have any 'dinosaurs').

    Except that the system is designed for catch-up. Dinos gain auto-XP slower and slower. We could easily tweak the numbers and still give newbs a chance. We took Reach's system and made it more flexible.

    I would not be unwilling to try RfK's system, tho.



  • I can manage a sentence. I thought the minimum was a little more than that, so no worries.


  • Admin

    I'm not opposed to a diverse number of sources such as @Coin suggested. So maybe something this, based on your max earnable XP per time period.

    • a charity reward for very casual players so they can advance without playing regularly - say, counting for 25% of the max.
    • a vote reward for active, social players. It's by far the easiest method even if it becomes a popularity contest - being popular and out there still counts. Another 25%.
    • a submission system similar to GMC's Beast so you can demonstrate significant things took place through a quick explanation ('I punched Hemi in the face and resolved my Fuck That Guy Condition') for 25%.
    • A PrP-running/participation system for people who dislike having to do bar scenes or whose schedules are easier to fit within an +event than looking for RP hoping there's a scene around. 25%.

    There could be something to this.



  • My only suggestion would be that the 25% charity be the minimum that everyone is moved up to at the end of a given period. Otherwise it's just an extra bonus moving your whole game's xp totals along. You could even be kind and say that the minimum continues to be added to each time period so that gives your new players a start.


  • Pitcrew

    @Arkandel said:

    I'm not opposed to a diverse number of sources such as @Coin suggested. So maybe something this, based on your max earnable XP per time period.

    • a charity reward for very casual players so they can advance without playing regularly - say, counting for 25% of the max.
    • a vote reward for active, social players. It's by far the easiest method even if it becomes a popularity contest - being popular and out there still counts. Another 25%.
    • a submission system similar to GMC's Beast so you can demonstrate significant things took place through a quick explanation ('I punched Hemi in the face and resolved my Fuck That Guy Condition') for 25%.
    • A PrP-running/participation system for people who dislike having to do bar scenes or whose schedules are easier to fit within an +event than looking for RP hoping there's a scene around. 25%.

    There could be something to this.

    I would allow for overlap. Instead of each thing being worth 25% each, they could be 30%, with 100% being the maximum.


  • Admin

    That's a good idea. It could even potentially be improved by using @Sunny's XP system - i.e. where each source can amount for 30%, but you can only spend 100% (i.e. the cap is on spending, not earning).

    Then you can have excess XP if they exist be spendable on non-attribute things, cosmetic stuff (a Bugatti, a glowing enchantment over your weapon, etc). This way hitting the cap isn't wasted for super-active people, they can still benefit in ways that don't have mechanical effects.


  • Pitcrew

    @Misadventure
    On RfK I was not funny or original. For my beats I wrote up a sentence sometimes two about each scene or source for beats for conditions etc. That was always enough and often got me extra beats when I would miss counting aspiration beats which is did a lot on the long term ones my char was working towards.
    It was hardly like writing a BG.


  • Pitcrew

    Yeah, we're basically doing two caps; you can earn X amount of XP in any month, made up however you want to of (a very long list of things, from what's in the book that you earn beats for to the additions we're making, and it can be in any combination you desire -- the hope is that we end up including a reasonable way for everyone to earn something that fits with what they want to be doing anyway -- I don't want folks going to huge scenes just for the XP, they should get rewarded for doing library researchy stuff, instead!). Then we'll have the yearly spend cap.

    All earning is going to be automated; you type the +beat/earn Type=Brief reason, and it posts to a staff only bboard and gives you the XP. This is the same general thing we're doing for spending it, too. Staff never has to get involved unless they start seeing a problematic pattern. nWoD's system can get annoying on the bookwork side; keeping all of said bookwork as automated as possible helps keep it from being as annoying as it could be, I think.

    The big thing for us is making sure that once the spend cap is hit, the big earners still have something to do with their XP, so that it doesn't seem pointless. The XP sinks are stupid important for making a cap work, I think.



  • @Arkandel said:

    That's a good idea. It could even potentially be improved by using @Sunny's XP system - i.e. where each source can amount for 30%, but you can only spend 100% (i.e. the cap is on spending, not earning).

    Caps on spending are more the kind of thing I'm looking at as well, rather than the caps on earning.

    You can't 'over-earn' on time, therefore the folks who focus on time spent on the game as their primary source aren't ever going to not get their fill; this is a major screw-over to the active folks running plots and getting out there and getting shit done to keep the game alive and active on a daily basis by comparison.

    This issue generally was the "hill I chose to die on" on Reno -- the one I finally quit over the arguments about, and a desire being pursued aggressively by a few members of staff for 100% XP transfer at will. Looking at those numbers, this was a recipe for a dino crisis from hell, not in terms of "this character has been around forever, so they're strong", but "this player has been around forever, so anything they choose to play at any time is going to be that strong". I looked at a number of characters created at the same time and never frozen, with a focus on the active vs. inactive re: jobs submitted/plots run/etc.. The most active player on the game who was running multiple plots weekly for an extended period of time still didn't approach 50% XP from activity. (And this guy was a trooper -- he sometimes ran multiple plots in a day.)

    The results I got were about the same as the above. It was a hill worth dyin' on.


  • Tutorialist

    Here's for my character on Eldritch:

    :::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::.  XP & Beats  .:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
    Normal: Experience: 2, Beats: 4
     - Earned: 56.9 (284)*
     - Spent:  54
    Player: Experience: 0, Beats: 0
     - Earned: 2.2
     - Spent:  2.2
    ......................................................................................................................................
    You have been approved for 4M 2w 6d 15h 28s
    
    • ST'd XP: 2.2 (11 beats)
    • Aspirations: 0.8 (4 beats)
    • Conditions: 0.6 (3 beats)
    • PrP Participation: 2.6 (13 beats)
    • Starting: 10xp (50 beats)
    • Auto-XP: 40.6 (203 beats)

    ..*: I don't know why it is showing as 56.9, I imagine it /should/ be 56.8, but the code is rounding oddly.


  • Pitcrew

    I believe it rounds up or down in order to have an even, non-decimal number from automatic gains every day or something. Theno knows.