Thursday, February 23, 2012

Moldvay - Everything is balanced.

In this section, Moldvay says:

"The DM should try to maintain the "balance of play". The treasures should be balanced by the dangers. Some groups prefer adventures where advancement between levels is swift. In such a case, since the treasures are generally greater, the monsters should be "tougher". Other groups prefer adventures where character development is more important, and advancement is slower. If the monsters are too tough, and if the parties are reduced by many deaths, then few characters will ever reach higher levels."

Most of this seems like common sense, so I don't really have a lot to elaborate on here.

It is interesting though, that Moldvay reminds us that there are higher levels there to be attained and that the DM should keep this in mind when plotting out adventures and campaigns.

I'm curious - how important is "leveling up" in your campaigns, as opposed to more in-depth character development?


  1. For whatever reason my B/X players have almost zero interest in XP and leveling up. It's kind of frustrating sometimes because as a DM I'd like to play around with some higher level challenges, magic, etc. When I run convention games and one-shots I really enjoy a sweet spot around 5th/6th level. After several years my B/X campaign is barely at 3rd level!

    I've ended up being more generous with XP to try to speed things up, but my players still seem much more interested in exploration, characters, and story-lines rather than chasing after gems and gold pieces. None of them are video gamers, so maybe they don't know what they "should" be doing!

  2. That makes me feel "better" about the slowish progression in my own campaign. After 2 years the highest level reached is 6 or 7, although the only real reason I chafe at the group's relative lack of interest is that I wanted to introduce a favorite old module--they're leveled up now, so after the players take care of some business of interest to their PCs, we're off to the races.

    I've actually felt grateful that my players are literally into the exploration/discovery angle of the campaign; it encourages me to become more imaginative in filling out the campaign world.



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