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D&D 3E
Rules adjudication for D+D. 
10th-Oct-2004 08:52 am
"Do not award XP for creatures that enemies summon or otherwise add to their forces with magic powers."

As written this rule is awkward, I understand where it's coming from as a summon spell is not really much different to a fireball or whatever other spell. However as written it would suggest that constructs and many undead should never be worth XP; they do however make a bigger difference to an encounter than a single fireball (eg).

It also, if taken to it's obvious conclusion would suggest that anything the summoned or created creature kills gains XP for the creator/summoner. So logically a dungeon where the wizard lives could have 10 (example number, to make the point) stone golems, which have been killing intruders and possibly even being sent out to kill other creatures; thus giving the wizard XP while he sits around doing nothing except creating other golems when appropriate (in mechanic terms, when he's got the XP).

I'm guessing that most if not all of you only apply this rule sometimes, I'm just wondering what your personal versions are.
10th-Oct-2004 01:22 am (UTC)
I think it's fair to award xp to the wizard for having the means to kill the bad guys, even indirectly.

I can see the logic of not awarding XP for killing summoned creatures if there is a big boss summoning them who is worth a lot more XP. Though if you manage to kill the summoned creature he throws at you, but not the big boss himself, that ought to be worth something. Perhaps in that case you could award xp for killing the skeletons or whatever and deduct that much when you later award xp for the lich himself. Something similar could be done if you encounter just the summoned creature and don't find his master... yet.
10th-Oct-2004 07:50 am (UTC)
Good point. What if you kill the cronies but not the boss? I will often scale XP based on what happens during play. In that case, I would rate it as a percentage of how tough the fight was vs. my guess at the end fight. Quite subjective, but oh well. You have to be careful awarding XP for each summoned creature because it might end up adding to something more than the boss it/her/him-self, or might be a bit anti-climactic. "Well since you defeated the summoned creatures before, you only get 500 XP for defeating the 15th level lich." ;)
10th-Oct-2004 02:17 am (UTC)
If you summon, the creator gets XP

If you create (i.e. Goloms or other cuh perminant constructs) then calculate it into factor. Also you have thre tight to limit XP based on hardness, if you think that the players didn't earn the XP of a fight...don't give it to em, or dock them etc..
10th-Oct-2004 07:18 am (UTC)
I never award XP for summoned creatures (as the rule indicates), but I do award XP for created creatures (undead and constructs). I didn't read the rule as including those. Also, it isn't like created creatures are instantaneous creations. A stone golem takes a while to create. Plus, not everyone who can create one does. Animate dead are somewhat "quick" to create. One thing that is probably often overlooked "You must place a black onyx gem worth at least 25 gp per Hit Die of the undead into the mouth or eye socket of each corpse you intend to animate." It takes time (especially in combat-terms) to get to the corpse and put the gem in.

I see created creatures more as cohorts. You get XP for killing cohorts. I was going to say they are like magical items, but you don't really get XP for those.

As for the creator gaining XP, I can see that for summoned creatures. I'm even more convinced given their short lifespan (1 rd/level; possibly altered through metamagic). Given my personal reasoning about created creatures, the owner/creator would not get XP. As a DM, I might give partial credit based on the creativity of the player, but I would make them work for it.

But all that is just my opinion. =)
10th-Oct-2004 07:45 am (UTC) - How I use this rule:
It's fairly simple, IMC.

-summoned- creatures are spell effects, and don't give bonus XP. Same for undead or contructs created by a single magical spell. (i.e., animate dead, create undead, greater create undead, and animate object.) Same thing for the followers included in an NPC with the Leadership feat.

However, any construct that requires the "craft construct feat", any ally that was bargained with to serve, any _called_ creature, and any undead that the NPC could not create are counted at full value.

10th-Oct-2004 08:27 am (UTC)
I play it as written -- that summoned creatures aren't counted for XP. There is little difference between summoning a creature, and using a spell that causes injury over time (like Cloudkill, Acid Fog, and Melf's Acid Arrow). Besides, if the players summon a creature, the encounter's XP aren't split among the new arrivals as well!

Something that others haven't touched on is that the summoning spells lose their effectiveness as the party gains levels. Unlike your example of fireball, creatures summoned with Monster Summoning 3 aren't going to be that effective against high level PCs. A fireball is probably going to do some damage, but MS3's creatures are just going to be slaughtered fairly quickly. I've had players complain that their summoning spells (levels 3 and 4) aren't very effective against the monsters they're facing, who have CRs from 11 to 17.
10th-Oct-2004 08:41 am (UTC)
I agree with all the people who distinguish between creatures you summon for the span of one battle versus those you create for the long term. Creatures summoned for a single battle are spell effects, so they caster deserves the XP for whatever they defeat and anyone who defeats them doesn't deserve XP for doing so. Created creatures are full NPC's.
10th-Oct-2004 08:42 pm (UTC)
The way I see it, "summoned or otherwise added by magical means" doesn't apply to created Constructs, nor Undead unless the enemy having done so did the ludicrous thing of creating them right in the midst of battle (which is all but impossible).

If a Lich sees a party of adventurers come waltzing into his private chamber and says "Holy shit! PC's! Create Undead!" then by all means, award the PC's no xp for this, as it was obviously in the Liches immediate means to bring them forth.

However, anything lurking around the dungeon doesn't count, as they would fall under the category of minions, lackeys, purchased or crafted constructs, or just plain monsters attracted to the wizard in the first place.

I see "otherwise added by magical means" to be applied to a charmed character. A PC or NPC that comes with the intention to fight, and then turns on his allies was added to the wizard's repetoire by magical means. :]
11th-Oct-2004 09:57 am (UTC)
I agree with this rule, especially in the case of stronger monsters. Take, for example, the pit fiend. It summons other demons per round as it will. This is part of the difficulty of fighting the pit fiend. Another example is the last boss at the end of Baldur's Gate 2: The Throne of Baal for the computer. She summons like mad, and this is just part of the battle.

I don't think enemies that have been constructed prior to battle apply to this rule, though, as this is part of the initial encounter.
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