115 votes

What do I do with a player who's always trying to go out on their own to farm XP?

The easiest way is to stop giving out XP at all. D&D very prominently features the so-called milestone rule in their Hoard of the Dragon Queen/Tyranny of Dragons adventures. They later refined ...
  • 21.7k
76 votes
Accepted

My party bypassed a combat encounter. Should they still get XP?

The rules as written for this, as taken from the DM DnD Basic Rules version 0.1 say: Typically, XP is awarded for defeating the monster, although the DM may also award XP for neutralizing the ...
  • 13.8k
74 votes

Why is there no non-combat XP in D&D 5e?

The premise of your question is flawed because the system allows for non-combat XP. Your question assumes that there is no non-combat XP in 5e, but this is not true. The DMG (pg 261) leaves the door ...
  • 62.7k
68 votes

Can I defer levelling up after reaching the XP threshold?

This is a bit of an XY Problem. The title of the question is 'can I defer leveling up?' but the actual problem is expressed in the second sentence: I'm not yet ready to pick what archetype would fit ...
  • 27.9k
65 votes

Do PCs understand the leveling system and its experience requirements?

Not really, but that doesn't leave them entirely in the dark The concept of experience points is an abstraction. As said in the 5e basic rules and on dndbeyond (emphasis mine): As your character goes ...
  • 25.9k
65 votes

How much XP can the Wish spell grant?

Well there's no base rule on that, but there are several issues with the idea, mainly with how the DM decides the outcome of your wish. If player tried to have their character say "I wish to be ...
  • 3,353
64 votes

How much XP does a monster created by Animate Objects add to an encounter?

Zero XP If your boss can cast Animate Objects, that’s already factored into the boss’s own CR. Spells are always part of the caster’s CR, including spells that can add new opponents, whether by ...
60 votes
Accepted

I erased an obstacle from having ever existed. Should I get any experience for it?

It's up to the DM. Whether or not you agree with him, your DM has the final authority in deciding which actions yield XP and which do not: (DMG 261) You decide whether to award experience to ...
  • 62.7k
59 votes

My players want to grind XP but we're using milestone advancement

Let me summarize: You have a group that prefers Milestone XP, but isn't interested in creating any new stories. And you don't seem interested in making a story of your own unrelated to the characters. ...
  • 3,353
58 votes
Accepted

Can PCs gain XP from “defeating” an enemy who actually just used Feign Death?

Yes. Your players should gain the XP for the encounter. From the "Beyond First Level" section of Players Basic: As your character goes on adventures and overcomes challenges, he or she gains ...
  • 102k
57 votes
Accepted

Can a character gain two levels with the same encounter?

As Ceribia referenced, RAW does not allow this. However, in this case I would consider it for four reasons. First, the Deck of Many Things is an artifact. Artifacts generally give the big flaming ...
57 votes
Accepted

Is leveling up mandatory?

You can't refuse to level up... From the Players Handbook, "Experience and levels" p 58: Advancing a Level: When your character’s XP total reaches at least the minimum XP needed for a new ...
  • 4,741
56 votes
Accepted

Are there any quick, reliable ways to level up in D&D 5e?

Levels are just a tool for enjoying the game No one will come barging to your RPG table to check if the levels are "legit" in any way - the only thing that matters with the leveling pace is that you ...
  • 53.5k
56 votes
Accepted

How can I add encounters in the Lost Mine of Phandelver campaign without giving PCs too much XP?

I'm going to challenge your premise a bit - why not drop XP-based levelling altogether and use milestone levelling instead? In my time as a DM and a player, I've found milestone has a few advantages: ...
55 votes

How can I raise concerns with a new DM about XP splitting?

By the Book I'd start by suggesting she review Chapter 8: Running the Game, Experience Points. Hopefully, the part she'll realize what she's doing wrong after reading this: Each monster has an XP ...
  • 47.6k
52 votes
Accepted

Why does the experience-to-next-level not change between some levels?

First, I don't believe that "why" is something that this community can answer; this was a decision of the designers and their reasons, to the extent that they have any, are a mystery. ...
  • 192k
52 votes
Accepted

What is the reason behind "one level at a time" level advancement in D&D?

I am not particularly fond of playing one game session and going up a level. That hardly qualifies as "earned," to my way of thinking. (E. Gary Gygax as Col_Pladoh on Dragonsfoot forum) The ...
49 votes

The GM ruled that we didn't get XP for killing the boss because an enemy caster's spell killed them. Is this allowed?

The rules don't say that player characters need to kill enemies to earn XP. From the Core Rulebook, chapter 12 "Gamemastering" gives an overview of how to run combats and combat rewards. The text ...
  • 31.2k
48 votes
Accepted

When an enemy is defeated, who in the party gains experience?

The whole group divides the experience between them Each monster has an XP value based on its challenge rating. When adventurers defeat one or more monsters-typically by killing, routing, or ...
  • 192k
47 votes
Accepted

Do you lose or keep your experience when you lose levels?

There are no monsters or effects in 5e which drain levels/cause loss of experience. Most of the monsters we'd have once associated with XP drain now have attacks which will drop one's maximum HP. ...
  • 98.7k
47 votes
Accepted

Does a PC who was KO'd earn experience for that combat?

No, as far as the rules are concerned, being knocked out does not affect whether you gain experience. The DMG has this to say about experience on page 260: Each monster has an XP value based on its ...
  • 142k
47 votes

What do I do with a player who's always trying to go out on their own to farm XP?

Two possible solutions: If the problem player continues to hunt ahead of the party on his own, sooner or later he'll get in over his head and run into a large Troll or band of Orcs. At which point he'...
  • 4,805
46 votes
Accepted

Is the XP for an encounter split among the party members or not?

Total XP is divided amongst the players participating in the combat The "Experience Points" section of the Dungeon Master's Guide says (p. 260): [...] When adventurers defeat one or more ...
  • 2,264
43 votes
Accepted

How should XP be awarded for an encounter when enemies flee, get intimidated, or are convinced to help?

Award XP for the types of play that you want to encourage. RAW, XP is awarded for defeating / overcoming encounters, but it's left up to DM discretion as to what that entails. Some (rare) groups ...
  • 1,241
40 votes
Accepted

How to assign exp for indirect kills

You should give the players full experience for the creatures they kill. If using clever tactics results in a decreased reward, you are effectively disincentivising playing tactically and encouraging ...
  • 142k
40 votes
Accepted

I am using milestone leveling, what happens when a character dies?

Ignore the level loss. It was a bad idea to begin with. D&D 3.5e handles split-level parties extremely poorly. The power gained in a single level can be unbelievably immense (typically, when a ...
  • 326k
39 votes
Accepted

Why don't players get extra xp for large encounters?

A possible (and sufficient) motivation is to avoid encouraging players to game the difficulty system for greater experience gain. A player aware of the XP system might be tempted to fight enemies in ...
39 votes
Accepted

Can you earn endless XP using a Flameskull and its self-revival feature?

No The DMG says: Each monster has an XP value based on its challenge rating. When adventurers defeat one or more monsters — typically by killing, routing, or capturing them — they divide the total ...
  • 192k
38 votes

Can a character gain two levels with the same encounter?

No PHB p.58: A character can advance only one level at a time. If, for some extraordinary reason, a character's XP reward from a single adventure would be enough to advance two or more levels at ...
  • 13.1k
37 votes

Why does the experience-to-next-level not change between some levels?

According to the game designer Mike Mearls the change in xp needed to the next level after 10 dips on purpose. The goal is that since according to their research most previous campaigns tended to stop ...
  • 32k

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