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If you kill something with someone in your party, even with a summons, you will get experience. If one of your summons kills something, you don't always get experience for it. (I think)

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Originally Posted By: Killua Zordik
I see. Do you also get experience if you just damage a foe?
i can't think of any games taht are like this (except for hitting wakka's blitzball in kingdom hearts, but that's just an isolated example, since it's not how the whole game runs).
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There are plenty of games in which you get experience for trying, not just killing.

 

Dungeon Master, Final Fantasy Tactics, a number of MMORPGs, Quest for Glory... I'm sure the list goes on.

 

—Alorael, who at least finds it more reasonable than the standard model of slaughtering monsters to improve your scholastic abilities. Most sages don't study by crude vivisection!

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Gay is not a slur that you can use on Spiderweb. This is an official warning.

 

—Alorael, who also happens to think that Dungeon Master 2 is a very good game. Clunky and full of literal wall-banging frustration, but good.

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It's not hard for characters who die a couple of times to catch up with the rest of the party, as long as you don't have them walking around dead all the time.

 

Remember not to try to learn any spells while you have dead spellcasters, though: they won't learn them.

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  • 2 weeks later...

So when your summoned monster kills an enemy, how often do you get EXP and how often do you not get EXP? Why do you sometimes not get the EXP? Is getting/not-getting the EXP from a summoned monster's kill related to the type of enemy the summoned monster kills?

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It seems to be random and unintended. Unless you're relying heavily one summoning it shouldn't make a large difference over the course of the game.

 

—Alorael, who found summonings only worthwhile against a few major enemies, and major enemies are rarely worth significantly more experience than minor enemies aside from quest rewards.

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Originally Posted By: ResFury
—Alorael, who found summonings only worthwhile against a few major enemies
I didn't find summonings to be worthwhile, period, unless I had a god party and didn't feel like wiping out an enemy in one swipe.
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Oh? Not even the arcane summon against a particularly annoying and hard to kill monster? I always use summons when I am trying to kill the pit crawler, since it basically gives more attacks to my side.

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It's pretty much impossible to trap Dorikas into a corner without using summons. I also thought the Howling Depths was hard without the help of summoned wolves to keep the Loyalists away from my heels.

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The trouble with summoning monsters is that the ones that come up for me are usually spellcasters, who immediately haste themselves, and then follow up by casting another summon spell at least once per turn. In most cases, this makes it nearly impossible for me to move, let alone fight.

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Originally Posted By: Excalibur
It's pretty much impossible to trap Dorikas into a corner without using summons.


It's actually very easy if you have four PCs: just put one on each side of him. Obviously, they all have to be able to stand up to his attacks, but you've been investing in Endurance for everybody, right?
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And terror makes it very dificult to stand in one place. But I think that for fights, it is only really worthwhile to use arcane summon, and then only when it is a very tough or many creatures.

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With a party of 4 I use summon monster almost every other battle. Summoned monsters are great for absorbing enemy damage and, for only 5 energy, they are very cost effective. My bolt of fire deals about 30 damage (and costs two) while my summon monster deals about 100 damage (over the course of the battle) and (in addition) by absorbing enemy attacks my healer doesn't need to cast minor heal as often (making it further cost effective since each minor heal costs two energy).

 

I'm a little scared that casting Summon monster so often could be costing me too much exp, but I think it's worth the investment because I fight battles faster. In other words, the loss in exp is worth the gain in time because I can use that extra time to fight more battles and advance the game.

 

Time is a very underestimated resource. For example, which option would you choose?

 

--> A) 10% loss of exp but the ability to do battles 1.5 times faster? Or

 

--> B) No exp penalty but having to spend butt-loads of extra hours beating the game?

 

Obviously the answer is A, isn't it? What do you guys think?

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Experience isn't useful for its own sake, it's useful because it helps you win battles. If using summoning now lets you win faster but puts you behind the curve so that in five levels you have to summon to win at all and in ten levels you can't win because your levels are too low, summoning is a sucker's game.

 

—Alorael, who fortunately doesn't think that problem exists. You can only lose experience if your summoning lands the killing blow and the game glitches (which, admittedly, it does often), and the game adjusts experience somewhat so that if you're lower level you get more (which is why high-penalty traits actually aren't so bad). So yes, the answer is probably A.

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Originally Posted By: Glitch My Asthma
Incidentally, it's really stupid that you get less experience for a monster killed by your summon. If PC 1 stands back and watches PC 2 kill a bunch of things, he gets full experience; why is it different if your summon does the work?


Oh, please don't start thinking about things like that, or Jeff will go back to the XP system he used for Exile.
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Originally Posted By: Thuryl
Originally Posted By: Glitch My Asthma
Incidentally, it's really stupid that you get less experience for a monster killed by your summon. If PC 1 stands back and watches PC 2 kill a bunch of things, he gets full experience; why is it different if your summon does the work?


Oh, please don't start thinking about things like that, or Jeff will go back to the XP system he used for Exile.


May I ask what's wrong with it?

The Last Archon
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The character who struck the killing blow gained 90% of the experience. This was bad if you enjoyed using your mage to fireball things to death at low levels, because he'd be at level 27 when everyone else was at level 5.

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This was terrible for your priest, because his major role isn't killing things at all. You'd think he'd get better at his healing role by healing more people, but no.

 

—Alorael, who also recalls Exile quest rewards ranging from inadequate to nonexistent in the experience department.

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Yes, I hated the Exile XP system too. The quest rewards were randomly generated on-the-fly, but those were actually good because they mildly balanced out the gross imbalances of earned XP that would inevitably accumulate. Things got especially bad once you discovered that the easiest fighting strategy was often "hit fight, attack with lead character, hit end fight, repeat until enemies are dead." I think this is the major reason that singletons became so popular in Exile and BoE. Certainly it was the reason I switched over and never went back.

 

But I really loathe experience. In my opinion, it takes away more from the playing experience than it adds to it. In the ideal RPG that I will never end up making, there will be no experience, at least not experience as it has been used for the last 30 years.

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Giving fixed levels or skill points or equivalent in response to story accomplishments only is my favorite system. There's no grinding and no bonus or penalty for being the expert sneaker, killer, mage, or whatever. Can you accomplish a task? Your character improves.

 

Balance becomes more troublesome, though, since skilled players both need less character advancement and can eke more out of their builds. The unskilled players either end up stuck or the skilled ones end up bored. Maybe that's what Easy and Torment are for.

 

—Alorael, who would be interested in seeing an RPG in which you make a character or party at the beginning and then don't advance. Maybe you can slowly change your skill/experience/whatever allocations as you play, but you can never have a character you couldn't start with. It would be an entirely tactical and strategic challenge and everyone would probably hate the game.

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Yes, that first mention is a reasonable system too.

 

What I really prefer is a system in which your abilities change in response to story events, but I don't see the need for your abilities to only grow. Losing character abilities doesn't make much sense, of course, but losing characters makes sense, as much as gaining them does. This allows the game to maintain a high level of variety and interesting battles without having to constantly scale upwards.

 

There are plenty of JRPGs that use the "start with 1 character and lots more can join along the quest" theory. There aren't a lot that have people come and go, though. FF4 is the only one I can think of that employs this mechanic exclusively. (As a result it's also one of the few JRPGs I've ever seen that whose continuity is not completely undone by the question, "Why can't all of us fight at the same time? Then killing the evil demon king would be really easy!")

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Originally Posted By: Lentils = Tanks. Slow but deadly

—Alorael, who would be interested in seeing an RPG in which you make a character or party at the beginning and then don't advance. Maybe you can slowly change your skill/experience/whatever allocations as you play, but you can never have a character you couldn't start with. It would be an entirely tactical and strategic challenge and everyone would probably hate the game.
robin hood: legend of sherwood may be what you're looking for.
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Originally Posted By: Hasted Sloth
Giving fixed levels or skill points or equivalent in response to story accomplishments only is my favorite system. There's no grinding and no bonus or penalty for being the expert sneaker, killer, mage, or whatever. Can you accomplish a task? Your character improves.


How many RPGs actually do this? It's pretty common in hybrid games with RPG elements, like Deus Ex or Zelda, but it's practically unheard of in actual RPGs.

Originally Posted By: Swampshedding in Broad Daylight
There are plenty of JRPGs that use the "start with 1 character and lots more can join along the quest" theory. There aren't a lot that have people come and go, though. FF4 is the only one I can think of that employs this mechanic exclusively.


I guess there's also Final Fantasy Mystic Quest, if you want to count that. There are a few other JRPGs that have characters come and go but don't let you select your own party at any point, but most are pretty obscure.
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"Vampire: The Masquerade - Bloodlines" gives experience for accomplishments rather than actions, but it's still a hybrid. I haven't seen it done outside of tabletop gaming, but I think it is (or I suppose it would be) a good system.

 

The freeware, indie, entirely forgettable RPG "Sacraments" also has characters join and leave your party at set points in the story. Granted, there are only three characters total, but it's the same idea. For more important games, the Lufia series does this, or at least I and II do.

 

—Alorael, who still doesn't see any of them remaining static. A game that switches your party's abilities by switching the characters in them could be interesting. He doesn't know of any games that switch characters and don't give you a chance to gain levels for them. In fact, a common complaint is the need to grind a new character up to usefulness.

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Originally Posted By: Hasted Sloth
Giving fixed levels or skill points or equivalent in response to story accomplishments only is my favorite system. There's no grinding and no bonus or penalty for being the expert sneaker, killer, mage, or whatever. Can you accomplish a task? Your character improves.

I can't remember the title, but the one game I've tried with this system was a good example of the downside--I want to get something more than a bit of excess cash from killing that giant spider that takes 10 hits to die and can kill me in 2! (This was some game that takes place entirely underground, with you as an amnesiac trying to prevent a god of evil from returning and killing everyone for no apparent reason.)
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If the spider was plot-significant, you should have, although indirectly. If the plot was a random enemy, it was probably more of a poor balance choice than something requiring reward. Random encounters in general are often a bad idea put in solely for grind purposes, and the point of my idea is to virtually eliminate grinding.

 

—Alorael, who supposes sidequest grinding is still grinding. At least it has to be minimally more interesting than just killing things at random.

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Originally Posted By: Hasted Sloth
"Sacraments"... Granted, there are only three characters total... the Lufia series does this, or at least I and II do.

This isn't what I'm talking about. Lufia 1 has 4 characters, and they never leave, they only join (well, except for GIANT SPOILER). Lufia 2 does have 7 characters, but three of them join early and (almost) never leave, so it's basically just 3 characters plus 1 rotating slot.

FF4 has 12 characters, all of whom come and go at numerous points in the game. The main character never leaves, but he does undergo a complete class change a third of the way through that turns him into a different character as far as gameplay goes. The party you control presents a dramatically different play experience from quest to quest. That's what I'm getting at.

Phantasy Star 3 does this as well. You play over multiple generations, where the characters who appear differ depending on who gets hitched in preceeding generations.
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Remember, the primary reason why most RPGs award experience based on monster kills is not because the players 'deserved' that experience, it's to balance the players' innate abilities with their ill-gotten loot. In low-magic settings, where a high level character's items have about the same power as a lower level character's items, experience can be awarded whenever the computer/GM wants. In tabletop games, you can even choose to level up by consensus.

 

Personally, I think awarding experience by kill should be avoided, especially in tabletop games. Players gravitate to the actions that give them experience, and besides, no one likes to stop playing because someone just levelled up and needs to read the rules (other than the lucky character). Awarding experience by accomplishment tells the players that they should explore all their options and take the one that gives them the best chance of success (or the most fun one), as opposed to attacking by default. As long as the GM keeps track of wealth per character level (where applicable), it's a good system.

 

Unfortunately, it doesn't work as well in CRPGs, especially open-ended ones. Imagine if Exile/Avernum 1 only gave experience when you completed a quest. Would work decently if the player completed the quests in a sane order. But if you do the quests 'out of sequence', it's virtually impossible. You're forcing the player to play the game in a linear fashion. (Yes, I suppose this ties into sidequest grinding. Bit of a Johnny-Come-Lately here.)

 

Linear games allow the experience model that Alorael talked about (gain a large amount of experience after every chapter). If the Geneforge games were more linear, this could have been done by making canisters award experience, and be the only way to gain experience. More believable that the 'what doesn't kill me makes me stronger' paradigm? You decide.

 

One discarded idea I had, which possibly could have been implemented in Blades of Avernum, was a game where the powerful protagonist has been poisoned and loses levels over the course of the game. Would it work when it comes to the story? Probably. Would it be fun? Probably not. Would it cater to Jeff's 'adolescent power fantasy'? No.

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You could award experience for quests even in an open game like A1. Do quests in whatever order you want. If you can't finish one because your characters can't handle it, do something easier to get more experience. It's the same as the current system, except "something else" isn't just "go kill random monsters." Spiderweb games actually aren't huge offenders; monsters do give experience, but you rarely go fight monsters for monsters' sakes. You kill them en route to somewhere else or in the process of doing something important, like exterminating all the X in Y.

 

D&D starts characters off pathetically weak and has them gain immense power as they level. Other systems, particularly non-level systems, can let you start with a reasonably competent character. Sure, the character may improve, but often the game is less focused on that improvement and more on doing something with the character you start with. And, of course, roleplaying games are supposed to be about the role, not just the rolls, according to some purists. (The mechanics are there for a reason, though, aren't they? They should be fun too!)

 

One tabletop system I've played with is quite simple: every session gives the same amount of experience. Win or or lose, and no matter how much you accomplish or attempt or ignore and just sit around talking, your characters advance. The benefit is surprising: with accomplishments completely divorced from non-story rewards, pacing becomes more natural and everyone is happy to try different things. The cost is loss of motivation, so if character advancement is the carrot moving your plot along your game will implode. This also really doesn't work well in a CRPG unless you have chapters that can be used as session equivalents.

 

—Alorael, who thinks playing a character of decreasing power would be fun as a limited gimmick. In general it's a bad idea, and not just because of power fantasies. One of the benefits of advancement is having more options, not just better options. More choices almost always means more fun, and taking choices away is a bad thing.

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Originally Posted By: Feo Takahari
I can't remember the title, but the one game I've tried with this system was a good example of the downside--I want to get something more than a bit of excess cash from killing that giant spider that takes 10 hits to die and can kill me in 2! (This was some game that takes place entirely underground, with you as an amnesiac trying to prevent a god of evil from returning and killing everyone for no apparent reason.)


Arx Fatalis?
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Quote:
a game where the powerful protagonist has been poisoned and loses levels over the course of the game. Would it work when it comes to the story?


Arthas has been there and done that(except for the poison part but his powers did deteriorate). For those who don't know, I'm referring to the Undead Campaign in the Frozen Throne expansion. Sure it's not an actual "RPG" but the essence is still there.
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