Bennies and experience

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Should players be able to exchange bennies for experience points (as in the rulebook)?

Yes
29
13%
Yes
29
13%
Yes
29
13%
Yes
29
13%
No
25
12%
No
25
12%
No
25
12%
No
25
12%
 
Total votes: 216

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Little Indian #5
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Bennies and experience

#1 Postby Little Indian #5 » Wed Sep 01, 2004 5:36 am

Leitchy mentioned elsewhere that he has a house rule where bennies don't count towards experience. I plan on doing it just the same way, because I think that the chance to gain additional experience through bennies will keep the players from spending those during the games (I witnessed that in a DC Heroes campaign) and I think not using bennies during play would go against the concept of "FFF".
Anybody else here who thinks it's not a good idea to allow players to swap bennies for experience?
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#2 Postby Mauler » Wed Sep 01, 2004 5:51 am

A friend of mine uses a compromise in his game.
Bennies only give you an experience point on a roll of 6. This way people spend bennies more often, because the chance to convert them is rather slim, but there is still some potential reward if you make it through a session without spending all your bennies.

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#3 Postby DerFinsterling » Wed Sep 01, 2004 6:08 am

My players convert like in the book, but they never get to hoard them. After a combat I throw them a benny, as well as for roleplaying. So, they're using them alright. Sometimes there is one player left with 3 or even 4 bennies because he had a lot of luck (or not a lot of action), others are left empty handed. While this may be unfair on one occasion, I have found that it balances out in the longer run.
The only house rule we have is: Spend 3 bennies and gain one xp automatically. That's rarely used though, since my players are way too greedy. The record was: 5 bennies, all rolled, got no xp out of it.

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#4 Postby Mr. Freak » Wed Sep 01, 2004 6:31 am

I think the rules are fine, although I have observed that it makes the luck and great luck edges really powerfull.

I do like the idea of 1 xp for all bennies spent.

Do you give out extra bennies as spot awards for good roleplaying, amusing the table, or heroic actions?

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#5 Postby jblittlefield » Wed Sep 01, 2004 6:43 am

I allow the exchange; however, since I use Bennies as "drama points" as well as for their intended purpose, they are rarely hanging around at the end of the session. I've only had one game (and that was before I started using them as drama points) in which a player actually had a Benny left over at session's end! ;)

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#6 Postby DerFinsterling » Wed Sep 01, 2004 6:56 am

Galen_Rasputin wrote:I think the rules are fine, although I have observed that it makes the luck and great luck edges really powerfull.

I do like the idea of 1 xp for all bennies spent.

Do you give out extra bennies as spot awards for good roleplaying, amusing the table, or heroic actions?


Me? Yes, I do.

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#7 Postby Little Indian #5 » Wed Sep 01, 2004 8:00 am

Galen_Rasputin wrote:Do you give out extra bennies as spot awards for good roleplaying, amusing the table, or heroic actions?


In other systems, I give out XP for such things, but since that ist pretty much impossible in SW, I think you should use bennies for that purpose.
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Re: Bennies and experience

#8 Postby Clint » Wed Sep 01, 2004 9:59 am

Little Indian #5 wrote:Leitchy mentioned elsewhere that he has a house rule where bennies don't count towards experience. I plan on doing it just the same way, because I think that the chance to gain additional experience through bennies will keep the players from spending those during the games (I witnessed that in a DC Heroes campaign)...


Then here's an optional rule you should love...

Players can roll for experience from the Bennies they spend.

Simply keep track of the number of Bennies each player spends and convert to experience in whatever way you use at the end of the session. You just have to regulate frivolous spending of Bennies.

That way Luck, roleplaying, etc. just gives a player the potential to earn more experience, but they have to get involved to actually do it.
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#9 Postby razorwise » Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:10 am

Clint,

I really like that suggestion.

I've been running a 50F campaign and I have one Doreen that livens up when it's fight time to get "coup" and then hoards his bennies like a dwarf hoards mithril. (However, he did loosen up on them when he started getting blasted by that Octopon Warlock. :D)

The rest of the players spend them more wisely, usually using them up in the course of roleplaying, reserving 1 generally for emergency soaking in combat.

Regards,

Sean
Last edited by razorwise on Thu Sep 02, 2004 11:42 am, edited 1 time in total.

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#10 Postby palehorse » Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:14 am

The campaigns I run are usually short enough that a couple of extra XP aren't really going to make much difference. Regardless, I don't do the bennies-for-XP thing.

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Re: Bennies and experience

#11 Postby jblittlefield » Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:15 am

Clint wrote:
Little Indian #5 wrote:Leitchy mentioned elsewhere that he has a house rule where bennies don't count towards experience. I plan on doing it just the same way, because I think that the chance to gain additional experience through bennies will keep the players from spending those during the games (I witnessed that in a DC Heroes campaign)...


Then here's an optional rule you should love...

Players can roll for experience from the Bennies they spend.

Simply keep track of the number of Bennies each player spends and convert to experience in whatever way you use at the end of the session. You just have to regulate frivolous spending of Bennies.

That way Luck, roleplaying, etc. just gives a player the potential to earn more experience, but they have to get involved to actually do it.


But the GM can already do that by awarding extra XP at the end of a session. In my games, this would be overkill since lots of Bennies are both handed out and spent during play. I already regulate "frivolous" spending by providing challenging encounters and awarding Bennies in response to good/clever roleplaying. This just seems like an extra and unecessary addition. As always, YMMV and "it's your game". ;)

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#12 Postby jblittlefield » Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:16 am

razorwise wrote:Clint,

I really like that suggestion.

I've been running a 50F campaign and I have one Kehana that livens up when it's fight time to get "coup" and then hoards his bennies like a dwarf hoards mithril. (However, he did loosen up on them when he started getting blasted by that Octopon Warlock. :D)

The rest of the players spend them more wisely, usually using them up in the course of roleplaying, reserving 1 generally for emergency soaking in combat.

Regards,

Sean


Sounds like you need to create situations that force that guy to spend his Bennies. The issue seems to be with one player - I wouldn't make that the basis for a rules change ... as always YMMV, but I suggest handling the player rather than changing the rules. ;)

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Re: Bennies and experience

#13 Postby Clint » Wed Sep 01, 2004 10:34 am

jblittlefield wrote:But the GM can already do that by awarding extra XP at the end of a session. In my games, this would be overkill since lots of Bennies are both handed out and spent during play. I already regulate "frivolous" spending by providing challenging encounters and awarding Bennies in response to good/clever roleplaying. This just seems like an extra and unecessary addition. As always, YMMV and "it's your game". ;)


See, that why I use the word, "optional." :wink:

Besides, jb, that's hardly a counterpoint to my suggestion. When your opposition is more than a little based on your house rules...

jblittlefield wrote:In my games, this would be overkill since lots of Bennies are both handed out and spent during play.


Of course, it won't work for you. But then you've got your Drama rules for Bennies, and I'm sure the whole 2-3 Bennies a session is out the window. :wink:

Note I also said (added italics and bold)...


Clint wrote:Simply keep track of the number of Bennies each player spends and convert to experience in whatever way you use...


You could roll like they say in the book, use a standard X Bennies = 1 XP, or just use it as a aide to the GM on how many bonus XP's to award at the end like you said. That way the number of Bennies spent can reflect their usage in the game. In one game a player might get 3 XP's for spending 6 Bennies in a game, while in another, it might be worth 1 XP.

As you've said many times, the beauty of the system is to be able to easily mold it to any group's style of play effortlessly and simply.

You take the good; you take the bad, you take it all, and there you have...

Savage Facts of Life!!! :arrow:

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Re: Bennies and experience

#14 Postby jblittlefield » Wed Sep 01, 2004 11:03 am

Clint wrote:
jblittlefield wrote:But the GM can already do that by awarding extra XP at the end of a session. In my games, this would be overkill since lots of Bennies are both handed out and spent during play. I already regulate "frivolous" spending by providing challenging encounters and awarding Bennies in response to good/clever roleplaying. This just seems like an extra and unecessary addition. As always, YMMV and "it's your game". ;)


See, that why I use the word, "optional." :wink:

Besides, jb, that's hardly a counterpoint to my suggestion. When your opposition is more than a little based on your house rules...

jblittlefield wrote:In my games, this would be overkill since lots of Bennies are both handed out and spent during play.


Of course, it won't work for you. But then you've got your Drama rules for Bennies, and I'm sure the whole 2-3 Bennies a session is out the window. :wink:

Note I also said (added italics and bold)...


Clint wrote:Simply keep track of the number of Bennies each player spends and convert to experience in whatever way you use...


You could roll like they say in the book, use a standard X Bennies = 1 XP, or just use it as a aide to the GM on how many bonus XP's to award at the end like you said. That way the number of Bennies spent can reflect their usage in the game. In one game a player might get 3 XP's for spending 6 Bennies in a game, while in another, it might be worth 1 XP.

As you've said many times, the beauty of the system is to be able to easily mold it to any group's style of play effortlessly and simply.

You take the good; you take the bad, you take it all, and there you have...

Savage Facts of Life!!! :arrow:

"Curse you, Mrs. Garrett! Curse you to Hell!!!" :wink:


Ummmm... I said "in my games". I wasn't disputing the idea, just stating that in my games it wouldn't work well - hence the use of "in my games", "YMMV", and "it's your game". I can only relate in terms of my games as I don't play in anyone else's. ;)

But now that we're on the topic ... there are better solutions IMHO than allowing a character that makes 2 soak rolls and re-rolls a failed attack to potentially earn 3XP that the guy who played his cards right and didn't need to use Bennies won't have a chance to get.

As written, the rules reward the player who doesn't rely on Bennies, but this is counterbalanced by the fact that the GM can award extra XP to someone who roleplayed well but didn't use all his Bennies. I just don't see how allowing a "convert roll" for used XP makes any sense - wouldn't simply awarding a bonus XP or two to those that played within character accomplish the same thing? If so, the rules already allow for it. Why clutter them up?

Again - YMMV, "it's your game", this is just my opinion, and I personally don't care how anyone else runs their games.

I never thought the day would come when I had to remind people that my opinions are just that - take 'em or leave 'em, agree or disagree, but you don't have to remind me that they're only opinions and only relate to my gaming experience - I already know that - and so should you ... ;)

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#15 Postby ragnarok » Wed Sep 01, 2004 4:11 pm

I don't use this rule. As seen in Deadlands, at least one(and most likely two) of my players WILL do anything to avoid getting into situations where spending FateChips/Bennies comes in handy.
:o
The situations usually looks like this:
1. Trouble arrives.
2. Said player finds a plausible reason why his character is not attacked
3. The other players save the day and HIS butt(and sometimes spend Fatechips while doing so).

You can see the effect from two sides:
a) The other players get punished for doing the right thing (i.e a loss of FateChips/XP in comparison to the problem-player).
b) Said player get's rewarded for doing nothing(extra XP for unspent Bennies), even worse he can throw the balance of your planned encounter into a very wrong side(which should be like "kneedeep in their own blood, but they'll survive with a little luck and teamwork"-> I hope they'll get luck).

Seeing this as a player(I don't GM Deadlands) sucks BIG time and I don't want to see such behavoir in my games(and bashing his characters will make me very happy a lot of times, but it will not work in the long run(remember: A GM without players ain't a GM)).
:cry:

In my next campaign I'll most likely go for a 1-in-6 chance per earned* bennie(regardless if you spent them or not), so if you got 3 extra-bennies during the Session, you can either roll 3d6 getting an XP for each 1 or you roll 1d6 getting an XP on 1-3. May sound compicated, but really isn't.

*Ok in an effort not to lesson the worth of "luck" or "young", extra-bennies from these will count as "earned".

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#16 Postby razorwise » Wed Sep 01, 2004 5:33 pm

jblittlefield wrote:
Sounds like you need to create situations that force that guy to spend his Bennies. The issue seems to be with one player - I wouldn't make that the basis for a rules change ... as always YMMV, but I suggest handling the player rather than changing the rules. ;)


JB,

The root cause is, of course, the player. My group is aware of this as well. He did spend a LOT of bennies last time, but Doreen get in positions to get a lot of them it seems to me.

I've been gaming with this guy for over twenty years and I really think he's been trying to run a stress test on the system.

The Octopon warlock his character encountered aided him in getting a full understanding of "SOAK" rules. :D

Anyway, I like to explore options. Some I use, some I don't. Some I make up. Some really make things run smooth as butter. Some of that butter turns out to be crunchy peanut butter. Seems to me that the appeal of SW is that you can easily tweak so many of the features out to get just the feel you want.

Now where can I get the actual definitive optional mandatory set of house rules? :1tongue:


Regards,

Sean
Last edited by razorwise on Thu Sep 02, 2004 11:43 am, edited 1 time in total.

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#17 Postby bighara » Thu Sep 02, 2004 7:30 am

I voted yes, but I use a slightly different XP-for-bennies rule. Each benny left at the end of the session gives the player a cumulative 1 in 6 chance of gaining =1xp. For example, a player with 2 bennies left rolls a d6 and on a 1-2, gets +1xp.
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#18 Postby DerFinsterling » Thu Sep 02, 2004 7:38 am

razorwise wrote:I've been running a 50F campaign and I have one Kehana that livens up when it's fight time to get "coup" and then hoards his bennies like a dwarf hoards mithril.


Shouldn't that be a Doreen, then?

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#19 Postby DerFinsterling » Thu Sep 02, 2004 7:50 am

ragnarok wrote:1. Trouble arrives.
2. Said player finds a plausible reason why his character is not attacked


Shouldn't the GM determine who's likely to be attacked? ;-)

3. The other players save the day and HIS butt(and sometimes spend Fatechips while doing so).


And he should get extra chips/bennies for that. And the other one has "accomplished little" and should get less xp at the end of the evening.

You can see the effect from two sides:
a) The other players get punished for doing the right thing (i.e a loss of FateChips/XP in comparison to the problem-player).
b) Said player get's rewarded for doing nothing(extra XP for unspent Bennies), even worse he can throw the balance of your planned encounter into a very wrong side(which should be like "kneedeep in their own blood, but they'll survive with a little luck and teamwork"-> I hope they'll get luck).


Ok, let's take a step away from the game table and look at this (I agree that among players, this sucks).
The guy who doesn't do anything, keeps his bennies. Let's say, he get's the same amount of xp as everyone else. After a while, he'll be 10 xp ahead of the other players.
So he'll have a character that's more capable then the rest. That's nice, but he doesn't use is abilities, which sounds rather boring.
On the other hand, the other players have a little more fun, since they might be not as advanced, but they get to engage in all kinds of gaming goodness.

All in all, that should balance everything out. I know it looks different at the table, but still.

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#20 Postby jblittlefield » Thu Sep 02, 2004 7:58 am

DerFinsterling wrote:
ragnarok wrote:1. Trouble arrives.
2. Said player finds a plausible reason why his character is not attacked


Shouldn't the GM determine who's likely to be attacked? ;-)

3. The other players save the day and HIS butt(and sometimes spend Fatechips while doing so).


And he should get extra chips/bennies for that. And the other one has "accomplished little" and should get less xp at the end of the evening.

You can see the effect from two sides:
a) The other players get punished for doing the right thing (i.e a loss of FateChips/XP in comparison to the problem-player).
b) Said player get's rewarded for doing nothing(extra XP for unspent Bennies), even worse he can throw the balance of your planned encounter into a very wrong side(which should be like "kneedeep in their own blood, but they'll survive with a little luck and teamwork"-> I hope they'll get luck).


Ok, let's take a step away from the game table and look at this (I agree that among players, this sucks).
The guy who doesn't do anything, keeps his bennies. Let's say, he get's the same amount of xp as everyone else. After a while, he'll be 10 xp ahead of the other players.
So he'll have a character that's more capable then the rest. That's nice, but he doesn't use is abilities, which sounds rather boring.
On the other hand, the other players have a little more fun, since they might be not as advanced, but they get to engage in all kinds of gaming goodness.

All in all, that should balance everything out. I know it looks different at the table, but still.


Easy solution ... the GM decides whether or not a player, based on his roleplaying and other factors within the game, is eligible to convert Bennies to XP. Someone who hoards Bennies and doesn't play in character thus doesn't get an edge over someone who spends Bennies like they're going out of style and stays true to his character.


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