Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Achievments for 4e - An Assessment


Back in January, I posted about using In Game and Out of Game Achievement cards for 4e DnD

Well, when the Dead Orcs Society had their game last Saturday, I finally got to hand out and implement the completed Achievement Cards.  Here's how that went...

When first handed out, the Achievement Cards were received with a general mix of confused bemusement.  Well, with the exception of my wife, of course (who I had previewed the cards with).  I think the number of cards were a little overwhelming, but as they looked at them, the players began to like the idea.

They were a little concerned that they wouldn't be able to meet every achievement.  I told them, that's the reason I created so many.  That way, everyone would have the opportunity to turn in some.  Since the cards are only appropriate for the Heroic tier, I told them they'd have until 11th level to turn them in.  I also prepared them for the fact that the Paragon Achievement Cards would have more difficult tasks on them.

There was only one small drawback to the cards, one that was foretold by Swordgleam in a comment on my original post.  Some of the achievements were way too easy.  I'm okay with that, though, as many of my players noted that some of the achievements were pretty difficult.  One example:  I have an achievement that can only be gained if a player avoids any talk about World of Warcraft or other Out of Game hobby.  Yeah...that was an automatic fail for about half of my players.

Finally, I have to give MadBrew props for suggesting that I use other rewards (beyond XP) for the achievements.  To that end, I believe I'll create a "deck" of rewards that a player can draw from.  Some might be XP, some might be Action Points, some might be the free use of a one-time Encounter Power, that kind of thing.  I'll post more about that idea another time.

Oh, in case you're wondering, here's what my Achievement Cards looked like:

Until next time...

Game excellently with one another.


  1. Kyle Ferrin3:18 PM

    I love this idea. Could you post a link to the original list of Achievements?

  2. R.M. Walker3:38 PM

    @Kyle: You should find that link in the first paragraph of the blog post :-) Otherwise, I'll post it here: http://initorwhat.blogspot.com/2010/01/4e-dnd-achievments-my-take.html

  3. This is completely awesome!

    ... and I probably wouldn't use it for my current game. It's awesome, but in a way that would totally work for some games and probably not for others.

    But I really like it. I can see how it would really spice things up, and it's the best alternative (to killing and looting) XP system I've come across so far.

    Look at it this way: XP is a reward, rewards encourage behavior, so the game tries to encourage certain behavior by offering rewards for it. In this case, you can tailor exactly which behaviors you want to reward and how much. Very cool.