Has anybody else had this problem?

Has anybody else had this problem?

Has anybody else had this problem?

I ran a 24-hour Dungeon World game a few months ago, and after about the fourth hour, I noticed something: players specifically rolling their weaker stats and stepping into situations where they knew that failure was likely due to the automatic XP for a failed roll. Meaning that these heroes were specifically avoiding rolling their best stats and pursuing the things for which their class was designed. I was a bit stonewalled, and just ran with it.

Any suggestions? I thought about increasing the lethal consequences of failure, so that yes, you get XP, but at substantial cost. Has anyone tried that successfully?

15 thoughts on “Has anybody else had this problem?”

  1. It sounds like maybe the characters didn’t have their own agendas.  If they did, they’d be shooting for hits/agency rather than XP (in theory). 

    A potential hack might be to ask each character for a short term goal or agenda.  Treat it like a bond [with fate] and add a question to the end of session move “Did you advance your agenda” with which they can individually gain an additional XP.

  2. Hm. I suspected that might be the answer. I think I was pulling my punches from my normal style of play (ask my Monster Hearts players about how hard my moves are) because I had new players, it was my first time with DW specifically, and we were all in it for the long haul at that point.

  3. I think it’s fine pulling punches in the first session or two. If they get to level 2 easily, that’s entirely okay! Advances are really cool. Just ramp it up from here and everything will go swimmingly.

  4. Two PCs died in the first three sessions of my game through a series of Misses while mostly rolling their best stats.

    So… no, I have not really seen that.

  5. You could use the “Group Failure” rule that I shamelessly borrowed from the World of Ooo hack that was floating around the web.  Count how many PC’s you have.  Each time there is a failure, move a token in to the Group Failure pool.  When it reaches the amount of PCs you have, the entire party gains 1 XP, and you reset the pool.  

  6. Mikael Andersson Yeah, it was in December, for a charity event ($20 for 24 hours of gaming, all proceeds to a local homeless shelter). I decided to map out a really loose structure, and bring a big sheet of faux-parchment, and run one continuous game, with breaks. We ended up cutting one whole act from my notes and we only did 20 of the 24. I’ll post my outline here, once I track it down.

  7. I always like to advance the overarching danger the group is facing, or introduce some environmental catastrophe that endangers more than just one guy. Set something on fire, start a cave-in, something big attacks the village, that sort of thing.

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