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Saturday, 30th August, 2008, 11:11 PM #1
Acolyte (Lvl 2)
An attainment is a something a character receives for in character success that identifies a remarkable acheivement or unusual relationship. Sample attainments might be
Trusted by the Mayor: You've proved yourself in the eyes of the mayor of Daunton; he trusts you with important or sensitive assignements. This attainment can be lost by betraying that trust, having it revealed that you've acted against the interests of the town.
Explorer of the Shadowrift: You've visited the Shadowrift on Kithria and lived to tell the tale
Caught the Skingraft Slasher: Your were part of the group that revealed the slashers identity and help capture her
Attainments would be approved in advance by judges (usually as part of an adventure submission) and awarded by DMs on an individual basis.
... some attainments could have trivial mechanical benefits
these should be granted as the result of success in a significant adventure or series of adventures... rare attainments could have non-trivial mechanical benefts
so if you're "known to be a friend of the Peg-legged Don" you get +2 to intimidate and diplomacy when dealing with the merchants of Bacarte; +4 when dealing with members of the Don's family
these should be capstones at the end of a truly epic and difficult adventure... affliation attainments would connote a particularly close relationship with a group
so if you've "Helped seal off the Caverns of Madness" you get +2 to saves vs effects with the psychic keyword; once a day as an immediate action when effected by a condition caused by a power with the psychic keyword that a save ends you may make a saving throw
similar to affiliations, which were sort of halfheartedly implimented in varous 3.x suppliments. You might get a discount on certain items or services, access to unusual equipment (alchemy?), or even the "lend" of a certain kind of magical item.(*=WotC just put it out on the web; it's not approved content for L4W but it's an easy to understand example)
So the "Defenders of Allaria" might give senior members the lend of a "battle standard*" magic item of level equal to the characters
Advantages may include
- An easy way for DMs and other players to find out what you've accomplished
- Could spark ideas for cross linked adventures
- A way to reward roleplaying
- With the advent of a pretty remarkably potent reward system for DMing we'll see a lot of higher level characters in play who didn't get there by playing; attainments are only available through actual play. A 4th level character who advanced normally will potentially have a lot of attainments (relationships, etc) that a character who "got to 4th on points" won't be able to match
- Judge workload
- Possible balance issues if we have mechanical effects
Sunday, 31st August, 2008, 12:26 AM #2
Waghalter (Lvl 7)
I voted "No." Seems like a lot of work to try and balance, if that's even possible. Also feels a bit like grinding faction in an MMO.
Sunday, 31st August, 2008, 05:17 AM #3
Acolyte (Lvl 2)
it is a multiple choice poll and there are non mechanical options.
Sunday, 31st August, 2008, 09:53 AM #4
Defender (Lvl 8)
Mmm... I haven't voted yet, but I'm leaning toward yes, with trivial mechanical benefits, and with individual achievements looked at by judges on a case-by-case basis. I'm thinking of a couple of things in one-off things in LEW that seem to have worked out pretty nicely, such as several characters who were awarded knighthoods in the Kingdom of Monemvassia after a series of linked adventures there. The knighthood, along with having plenty of fluffy benefits (e.g. people in Monemvassia knew them and were generally favorable to them), came with a small estate that generated a flat 50g per real-time month of income. One of the characters was a bard, who chose to have his "estate" take the form of a theater on the outskirts of the city that he owned. 50g/month was a pittance by the time they achieved it, but I always thought that was pretty cool nonetheless.
The reason I haven't just voted yes is that I'm not sure how it helps to have a policy in place for this sort of thing. As long as we have a policy that any adventure rewards that are out of line with the normal treasure packets outlined in the DMG have to be authorized (by email) with the judges beforehand, then the judges can just look at any proposed rewards one at a time. I assume these things are intended to be pretty rare?
Sunday, 31st August, 2008, 02:16 PM #5
Acolyte (Lvl 2)
I am personally thinking about living settings and games I want to run and I keep getting stuck on how difficult it might be to get info spread around that would let dms build a richer world.
Like what if a dm starts and adventure involving mayor bunt or the merchants or whatever and there is one member of the group who worked closely with him and another who betrayed them...
how would you know? Wouldn't it be nice to have that recorded somehow?
or to know that one of the party members has already been to the island upon which you're setting your adventure?
My thought is that mechanical stuff would be rare one every two levels... But someone who's really into roleplaying and building relationships might wind up picking up a couple of rp attainments (stuff that has no mechankcal benefit) a level.
If people get into it it could be the tip of the iceberg... If a bunch of characters have the attainment "defeated agents of the dark one" then a dm could propose an adventure (or just a vingette) about "the dark one's high priest tries to take revenge".
Sunday, 31st August, 2008, 06:03 PM #6
Defender (Lvl 8)
If I were running a game involving an NPC and a player had had dealings with that NPC before, I would expect the player to point it out to me, and roleplay their new interactions appropriately. Then I could apply circumstance bonuses or penalties as I saw fit.
One every other level is a lot more common than I was thinking. I was thinking that maybe one in ten characters would get one during their adventuring career. If it's every other level... well, that sounds an awful lot like a feat. Surely these things are less common than feats?
D&D involves a ton of bookkeeping already. I don't think we need to add more for this.