The recent adventure Tomb of Annihilation released by WotC includes allies that can join the party. As an open-world adventure spanning multiple PC levels and Tiers, PCs could potentially gain allies more powerful than themselves such as the NPCs below.


Artus Cimber with his Ring of Winter (CR 7)
Dragonbait (CR 5)

How does one calculate awarded experience when the PCs have allies that are more powerful than themselves in Adventurers League?

We are wondering if there is an official formula - something like:

$$\text{Awarded_XP} = \text{Received_XP} \times \frac{\text{Expected CR}}{\text{Actual CR}}$$

As opposed to the answers to the question Determining "level" of an NPC ally for purpose of budgeting encounter XP, we are looking for official Adventurers League guidance or acceptable practices — not homebrew suggestions.


2 Answers 2


The rule for this is in the DMG p. 260:

If the party received substantial assistance from one or more NPCs, count those NPCs as party members when dividing up the XP.

The Adventurer's League DM Guide says:

Award XP as noted at the conclusion of the adventure. If you’re running one of the adventures published by Wizards of the Coast, it is up to you to calculate XP for your players. Otherwise, you’ll be provided with a guide on how to do that in a standalone D&D Adventurers League adventure.

None of the WotC adventures that I have seen (including Tomb of Annihilation) address this so the rule from the DMG applies.

  • \$\begingroup\$ The AL documents have been updated since the answer was posted. You may want to check whether the AL DM's Guide (or technically, the two different DM's Guides for the Forgotten Realms Eberron) or other AL documentation still includes such a statement. (TJL's answer suggests that the question itself has been invalidated by changes to the AL rules.) \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Commented May 29, 2020 at 22:34
  • \$\begingroup\$ @V2Blast thanks for the heads up - I don’t want to check. If you want to check, knock yourself out. \$\endgroup\$
    – Dale M
    Commented May 29, 2020 at 22:38

It no longer matters.

The current DDAL rules (Season 9, as of March 2020) do not use XP, they simply award a level at the end of a module or after 8 hours of hardcover play (4 at tier 1). Players can accept or decline the advancement as they please.

  • \$\begingroup\$ For further support, you may want to point out the relevant section of the specific version of a document that indicates this change (i.e. explains how advancement works). \$\endgroup\$
    – V2Blast
    Commented May 29, 2020 at 22:35

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