A system with different melee characters?

Kinda. The rules explicitly explain CRs as how combat potent a creature is. They state that traps give experience points if they are disabled or intentionally bypassed. There really isn't anything more in the core rulebook for getting experience points for talking your way out of a fight than just a liberal interpretation of defeated. Add to that all the details about combat and all the class features for combat and you get a game that really gears people for combat. 3rd end was worse because it said you got a max of 50 experience points times your level up to once per adventure for roleplay. Doing the math that is worse than if your party of 5 fought a CR 1 one monster at first level. Especially because you could only get up to 50 times your level once by the rules. You could get experience from fights constantly.

Any idea where that bit about a maximum amount of XP for RP is in 3rd? I'm not familiar with it? Did it carry through to 3.5?

Well... It doesn't have to be "ready to fight" - Persuading someone opposed to your cause to help you could count as "defeating" them - especially if it gets you valuable, unique information to resolve whatever the problem you're dealing with. Maybe you've persuaded the bounty hunter who was looking for you that you're not their real target, or managed to turn a spy, and get the passphrase for the evil overlord's camp that night. Maybe you've defeated an opponent by sneaking past them.

I don't like the "fixed XP per story for RP" thing, because it tends to devolve into "Oh the angst!" rather than focussing on "normal" RP. If you don't have secret plans to betray the party, or some dark secret about eating your childhood pet, it doesn't seem to cut the mustard... (I exaggerate a little here...) If I'm playing a relatively normal, well adjusted character who doesn't have some massive background thing going on, I'll get bypassed on that portion of the XP, even though I might be roleplaying the character well, simply because there's no huge memorable moment in the session. Specifically with WOD - "1 XP for 'what did your character learn this session' " - this is great, if the session actually included anything reasonable that the character could learn from, or if the character was allowed to participate in scenes, rather than everyone else's character getting scenes.

Contrast those experience rules with the experience rules for, World of Darkness, Shadowrun , All Flesh Must Be Eaten etc... They all state explicitly that you get a set amount of experience per session for roleplaying. Even with your example if my character harbors a dark secret and has a dramatic scene where they are tortured by the prospect of keeping their loved ones in the dark, well the player gets experience points for that. In your Pathfinder example based solely on the core rulebook I need to have someone ready to fight and talk them out of it to "defeat" them in order to get experience points. As written combat needs to be a constant in the game whether we are talking people out of it or beating them, combat has to on the table every session or we don't experience points. So yeah that game centers around combat in just about Every way as written. Add to that the wealth by level dynamic I am not in any way gaming in the previous example. Does it need to be a dungeon crawl, or min/max combat meat grinder. No but the rules for character classes and character advancement were written around combat. I can see why people would think that or play that way.

/r/rpg Thread