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    Canonfire :: View topic - The XP value for monsters in the various compendiums
    Canonfire Forum Index -> Greyhawk- AD&D 2nd Edition
    The XP value for monsters in the various compendiums
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    Journeyman Greytalker

    Joined: Jan 11, 2009
    Posts: 227
    From: Montgomery, Alabama

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    Fri Jun 19, 2015 10:54 am  
    The XP value for monsters in the various compendiums

    I was looking through my various loose-leaf MCs today and was again amazed at the vastly increased XP value for some of the monsters, particularly the Demon and Devils. Some of the Demons are valued at 40,000 exp or more, which I think is way too high. Apparently others did too, because these were dropped to more realistic levels in later products. Does anyone know the reasoning behind the increase and decrease?
    GreySage

    Joined: Sep 09, 2009
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    From: SW WA state (Highvale)

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    Sun Jun 21, 2015 9:28 am  

    You pose a good question, and one that I have noted as well. The XP for the fiends is especially different, but overall the totals between the 1e DMG and the Monstrous Compendiums do NOT match up.

    I wonder if it is the way in which XP is generated differently between the 1e and 2e systems. Look at the DMGs between the two editions and you will see that XP is structured differently.

    Personally, this is one (of a few) ways that I actually prefer 1st edition over 2nd. Shocked You can do what I've done (especially for fiends), and recalculate XP for your creatures, accounting for all their myriad special powers, abilities, attack forms, magic resistance, and the like. Feel free to post your findings here, or generate more discussion.

    -Lanthorn
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Nov 28, 2011
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    From: Alberta

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    Sun Jun 21, 2015 10:01 am  

    I looked at this as well they are way different this is a good thing to know. My son's LE party has not made Iuz a happy camper so he is sending Demon's after them. The current adventure I am doing has a good (good party) the Bad (the PCs) and the Ugly (Iuz's Champions) searching for one of the Dragonorbs at the sametime. They are all about equal power.
    Journeyman Greytalker

    Joined: Mar 05, 2007
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    From: The Pomarj

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    Mon Jun 22, 2015 11:27 pm  

    Lanthorn wrote:

    Personally, this is one (of a few) ways that I actually prefer 1st edition over 2nd.

    -Lanthorn


    Yes. I've seen this as a flaw in 2nd edition for a long time now. Something seems not quite right to me, that characters can get the exact same XP for killing a (creature), whether it's a prime example of its species, with max HP, or if it's halfway to the hereafter even if they did no more than offer it a bowl of hot soup. I think 1st edition did handle that a bit better with the _ per HP thing added to the XP given for defeating a creature.
    GreySage

    Joined: Sep 09, 2009
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    Tue Jun 23, 2015 9:11 am  

    This is why I don't use the XP tables for 2nd edition at all for defeating creatures, but instead use the 1st edition tables.

    However, I do like the XP tables for classes in that clerics and wizards get XP for casting spells (appropriately, but this can be tricky for DMs to adjudicate), thieves for sneaking 'n' creeping, fighters for killing, etc.

    -Lanthorn
    Journeyman Greytalker

    Joined: Jan 11, 2009
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    From: Montgomery, Alabama

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    Mon Jun 29, 2015 8:26 am  

    BlueWitch wrote:
    Lanthorn wrote:

    Personally, this is one (of a few) ways that I actually prefer 1st edition over 2nd.

    -Lanthorn


    Yes. I've seen this as a flaw in 2nd edition for a long time now. Something seems not quite right to me, that characters can get the exact same XP for killing a (creature), whether it's a prime example of its species, with max HP, or if it's halfway to the hereafter even if they did no more than offer it a bowl of hot soup. I think 1st edition did handle that a bit better with the _ per HP thing added to the XP given for defeating a creature.


    I agree with your points BlueWitch, and all the ones in this thread. This is one of those cases where I think the DM has to come in and adjudicate changes from the material. I will say though, that many modules that came after the MCs fixed this issue by reducing the XPs for many high level monsters. I was more satisfied with these results.
    Black Hand of Oblivion

    Joined: Feb 16, 2003
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    Tue Jun 30, 2015 12:33 am  

    Let me play devil's advocate here... Evil Grin Razz

    To be fair, the demons/devils can be worth that much XP...if a DM even remotely plays them properly. We're talking critters than can teleport w/o error...at will...among other things. A single dretch on the loose can wreak utter havoc, and manes are not exactly easy to get rid of. And besides, it is not as if they are required to stick around to be "killed" you know.

    "Huh. A paladin with a holy sword, and some friends. Well, I guess I could take a left at Albuquerque and appear in front of their steeds and retainers, who look rather tasty. Then I might pop off to the local hamlet, subjugate the will of anybody of questionable morals, and torture/kill/damn the souls of the pure/pious/innocent. Or I could stand here and get shanked by a bunch of do-gooders. Hmmm. What to do.... Oh look! They just 'killed' fifteen manes. I wonder if they even know that it takes a powerful spell to permanently banish each one of them, because they will simply reform after a day- and those are the weakest of us! Bwahahahaaa!"

    Lower planar creatures are not really overpriced, just vastly underplayed. If you are going to underplay them, by all means cut the XP. If you play them to be as diabolical and demonic as they are (i.e. play them so as to live up to describing them using those adjectives), I think you will find that the PCs will be earning every one of those XP they get. Such critters can be ongoing nemeses- even the lowliest of them.
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    Journeyman Greytalker

    Joined: Mar 05, 2007
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    From: The Pomarj

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    Tue Jun 30, 2015 6:34 pm  

    Cebrion wrote:
    Let me play devil's advocate here... Evil Grin Razz


    Not just devils. You seemed to do a fine job advocating for all lower plane creatures.

    There's not much I can add to what Cebrion said. Most of the lower plane creatures should be much harder to defeat than I've seen in games I've played in. I must admit, I've played them a bit too easy as a DM.

    Now, the dumber ones, such as the Manes or Lemure, I think would stupidly march to the slaughter, under the theory (from those above them) that their purpose is to be the cannon fodder, and if they manage to soften up the "heroes" before the leader is forced to do any work, all the better.

    But then, the more intelligent ones, even those of "average" intellect, would and should, USE what intellect they have towards to goal of defeating or destroying the "heroic troublemakers". Let us not forget, these lower plane creatures are effectively immortal, if not literally immortal. A person of average intelligence, given a few thousand years, could appear brilliant to even a super-genius who has had "only" 40 or so years to learn what they know so far. Experience can be a great teacher. Demons, devils, etc., would know to learn from their mistakes as well as, if not better then, mortal humans or demi-humans, if for no other reason that on the lower planes, there are far more "mistakes" that can have long term consequences. Sure, a thousand years may be a relatively small percentage of an immortal being's lifetime, but it's still a long time if you are held in captivity or subject to the will and whims of another. Therefore, any mistakes that could lead to this will be avoided.

    In a way, this reminds me of the discussion about "stupid" humanoids. I recall posting there that an orc or hobgoblin with "average" intelligence may have a shorter lifespan than a human, but devotes more of their learning to "practical" pursuits than a human does. While a human will learn his/her trade (or the details of character class, to say it in game terms), they would also find other things to occupy their time (All work and no play...) For the denizens of the lower planes, their "hobbies" would more likely be towards increasing their own personal power, knowing any weakness real or perceived, by others, would be an engraved invitation to attack. So, they not only have more time to learn, but spend a higher percentage of time working towards making themselves undefeatable.
    Journeyman Greytalker

    Joined: Jan 11, 2009
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    Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:45 am  

    I agree with Cebrion that demons and many outer planes creatures are very powerful and should be hard for even powerful PCs to beat. However, several of the demons in particular do have stats that don't exactly match their powers. For instance, Vrocks, Hezrou, and Marilith are very powerful (especially Marilith), but only have between 50-90 HPs max, which I don't think matches up with their powers and status. Two high level PC fighters (14th and up) armed with magical weapons would probably win against a single one of these demons. In many cases I have had a party of high level PCs encounter more than a few of these demons and still come out on top. Even a Balor, probably one of the strongest bad guys out there has only about 80-100+ HPs. I do agree with Cebrion that I may not always have played demons to their full potential, but their powers and abilities are definitely different than a PC magic user. I would be interested to hear from one of the writers at TSR/Wizards to see why they changed the XP value for many of the outer planes creatures in 2nd edition. I think destroying them on the prime is cool, but true destruction on their home plane is definitely a feat and should be rewarded accordingly.
    Apprentice Greytalker

    Joined: Feb 12, 2014
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    From: Maryland, USA

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    Thu Jul 02, 2015 12:23 pm  

    Someone screwed up with the XP in MC08; they were corrected in Planescape. In MC08, they basically increased the effective HD for determining XP for *every single power* they have, which is not the correct way to do it. If you use the XP chart and recalculate them yourself, you'll get very close to the numbers listed in MC08.

    Planescape supersedes the MC08 in every case (with the exception of Adamantite Dragons and Air Sentinels, which were the only things not brought into Planescape, but altering XP if necessary is easy).

    Jeff
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