View Full Version : Xp costs be gone

Frog Dragon
2009-01-07, 02:37 PM
So the thing is I hate the XP costs system. I think D&D is a good system, but Xp costs are just bull****. How can you possibly lose your very experience when MAKING AN ITEM!!?? It makes no sense. Some undead drainning your levels I can understand as they drain your essence something casting a spell or making an item shouldn't do. Anyway undead don't take levels they inflict negative levels which I think is different. Still I think there should be no permanent level loss from negative levels.
My fix would be. If the fort save is not succesful the negative level persists until cured (restoration and the like)

Crafting is a tougher nut to crack, but I'd say. Have crafting XP. You gain crafting xp at a rate equal to 1/4 of your XP total. You can use them for crafting with costs equal to the normal amounts. If you wish to craft over the Crafting XP then

you get to pay in Con penalties.

between 1-500 xp -2 to Con
501-1000 -4 to Con
1001- 1500 -6 to Con
and so on

These effects persist for 48 hours. The costs stack. If for example you pay 200 XP to create an item when you have no crafting XP left you take a -2 to Con. If you then create an item with an XP cost of 150 you still stay at -2 Con. For this reason you must record the costs

Now onto spell costs which are the hardest one of them all.
I would say something like this
0-50 negligible
51-200 Fatigued
201-450 Exhausted
451-800 Exhausted and an additional -2 to Con
801-1300 Exhausted and an additional -6 to Con and -2 to Dex
1301-1800 You are Exhausted, you collapse* and take a -6 to Con and -2 to Dex
1801-2500 You are Exhausted you collapse*, you take a -6 to Con, a -4 to Dex, a -2 to Str and a -2 to Cha
2501-8000 You are exhausted, You collapse* You take a -6 to all physical stats and a -2 to all mental stats and the duration of the effect doubles
8000+ You are exhausted, you collapse*. You take a -6 to all stats and the duration of the effect triples

If you already have some penalties of the spell you are casting you go up in the penalty ladder one step. If you still cannot take all the new effects without them being redundant due to old penalties you lose the spell. the penalties cannot take you lower than 3 in any given stat and if for this reason you are unable to take the full effects the spell is also lost.
The normal duration for the effects is six hours.

*Collapsing. You collapse under the strain on your mind/body and fall unconsciout for one full hour.

Penalties on getting raised

You take a -6 on Con a -4 on Dex and Str. you take a -4 on all mental stats. You are also fatigued. These penalties persist for one week if you did not engage in strenuous activity and rested for a 2/3 of the time. If you do not do so double the duration.

Note: None of the penalties unless specifically noted may be healed with means other than waiting the time out.

2009-01-07, 03:01 PM
My first thought when reading that last part of the post was "teehee, res sickness."

Honestly, though, I've been looking for a way to avoid the xp costs for items for a long time; we currently do quests for power components at the moment, but that's not sexy from a rules standpoint, even if it is hot for our group. This looks like a good start. You should probably increase the penalty to Con for creating items by about double what you have, and make it heal at the standard rate for ability damage (look at ability burn in the psionics material for a good way to do it; you can't heal that with magic, it has to heal on its own).

2009-01-07, 08:36 PM
Well, XP costs exist for game balance reasons. PCs can make more or better magic items then they find for the same base character wealth level. That and they can get precisely what they want, almost when they want it. So there is that.

As for spells, you're into negative energy drain (though, not permanent but still) as it's draining "essence" or whatever but not potent, powerful magic doing the same? That seems a bit lopsided. There are definitely examples in literature and cinema where the character casts powerful magic and "ages" or gets weakened by it. XP costs are a way of balancing it, as well, Wish can get pretty silly.

I personally am alright with XP costs. If you want to make items but don't wanna pay the cost, play an artificer (Eberron Campaign setting manual).


The Neoclassic
2009-01-07, 10:07 PM
My first thought when reading that last part of the post was "teehee, res sickness."

:thog: yay for world of warcraft! :thog:

Sorry, I like Thog too much. Anyway, interesting system. I, too, hate xp penalties for making items, and while I am not the crunchiest sort, your approach doesn't look too unbalanced.

Frog Dragon
2009-01-08, 10:43 AM
You now actually have a smaller capacity for crafting I think. You cannot use your normal XP and you can only have so much natural Con. It will run out eventually. Then you just have to wait and you can't craft. Your crafting XP is 1/4 your normal XP so you have that plus your reserve of Con and I don't think it amounts to more crafting per level than the Rulebook one. If it does then I will lessen the milestones on crafting Con Penalties to lessen the uses.

Shades of Gray
2009-01-08, 10:44 PM
Spells costing Xp makes sense. You are giving away your life energy, draining your essence, to cast an earth-shatteringly powerful spell. If you look at crafting, you are putting your essence and life energy into a magical object.

Frog Dragon
2009-01-09, 08:18 AM
Last time I looked XP was your acuired experience. A peasant has as much of life energy as a level 20 wizard. I agree it's tiring to do that stuff that's why I did new penalties.

2009-01-09, 10:11 AM
I just ignore XP costs, and hope that my players do not take too much advantage of it.

Darth Stabber
2009-01-09, 01:29 PM
I've ignored xp costs as well, and So far I've never had a player abuse it. Then again my playgroups are never anywhere near optimized, and it someone starts making items and brings the total party wealth above WBL guidelines so be it, the Wizard4/sorc6/ultimate magus2 can Craft all he likes and it still won't make the Fighter6/cleric2/bard4 broke.

2009-02-21, 10:52 PM
Last time I looked XP was your aquired experience. A peasant has as much of life energy as a level 20 wizard. I agree it's tiring to do that stuff that's why I did new penalties.

If a peasant had as much life energy as a godlike wizard, he would be just as easy to kill. He isn't. Also, your XP represents the strength of your soul/personality/self/insert-your-term-here, which naturally gets stronger by overcoming great challenges (generally by adventuring). When you use powerful magic, some of yourself goes into it, so you lose XP.

It's all in how you think about it.

2009-02-22, 12:47 AM

The general opinion amongst the optimization-inclined seem to think that the XP cost is actually not enough of a drawback to hamper a wizard from loading up on all potential backup spells one might need (scrolls). That's pretty much part of the whole Batman wizard that gets thrown around.

Consumables are there to avert death, which drains experience anyway. Permanent items are investments and should pay for themselves anyway.

The reasoning being that trading a small bit of XP for power, here-and-now, is worth it. For example, boosting your intelligence using a Headband of Intellect.

Seems odd that you would rather go on another quest for power components rather than just spending the XP up front and recouping the losses later. Same end result anyway -- you have to quest to get what you want and to advance.

Frog Dragon
2009-02-22, 12:26 PM
For me, it really isn't that much of a balance system though I did this to retain balance. It's principle. I hate the concept of losing XP even if it had balance value. This system is made to ditch the XP costs, but retain balance.

In summary: XP costs decrease my and my group's (my group hates it too) enjoyement of the game. Thus we replace the system. I put it here to polish it and let others who also hate XP costs use it.

2009-06-25, 07:31 PM
Listen to a dragon who has a higher CR. And probably higher Wisdom and Inteligance scores...I have yet to see stats for frog dragons.

Permanent effects should have permanent costs. Replace XP costs with permanent Con/Str/Dex losses, or lost hit points, or extra years of physical aging, or something lasting more than a couple days. I can see an elan (not :elan:, the Complete Psionic (I think) race) or other immortal PC taking item creation feats and making items with all of his gold. 50% discount!

I'd suggest permanent costs (1 year of physical aging per 10 xp, 1 point of lost constitution per 1000 XP, etc), or replacing XP with special regants (costing quintuple the XP cost). Remebber the Rule of Permanency (and other items/long lasting spells/etc):

Spoilered for size.
Size, indeed

2009-06-25, 07:34 PM
I always thought the system was a little funny. A magic item merchant makes a few items, and regresses to the point of not being able to make them anymore. :smallmad:

2009-06-25, 07:38 PM
Guys. Calm down, relax. I spreads the holy word of a system that has fixed this. Behold, the bible of the new age of dnd ; PATHFINDER. Go on the paizo site and download the beta playtest for free.

They have removed all exp costs of spells and item creation feats. You do not EVER lose actually levels from anything anymore - even raise dead, etc just gives a "negative level" that gives you a few penalties, not an actual -removed- level. Of course, exp/leveling rates in pathfinder are slower - just to reach level 2 it takes 1,300 exp normal. (Well, they have options for different exp/level advancements for Fast, Normal, and Slow paced games, 1,300 is the normal.)

PairO'Dice Lost
2009-06-25, 09:14 PM
Losing Con and gaining experience for crafting was how 1e did it. It seriously cuts into your Con, since you can't heal it, but hey, you wanted the item of awesomeness.

I'd go with aging 1 year per 1000 XP, myself; that kindasorta fits the 2e aging stuff and it makes you worry about your character's age (which is basically irrelevant now except for mental bonuses). You'd need to take immortal characters into account, but I'd say they lose 1 Con for every 10 years they would age and that should do it.