I have been interested in writing a litrpg book with the skill systems functioning as a path system that progresses on one direction as you work hard and each skill will have a rank that determines how hard they are to actually acquire. For example there will be a warrior path with the following skills:

  • Willpower (Rank 1)
  • Simple Weapon Proficiency (Rank 1)
  • Martial Weapon Proficiency (Rank 1)
  • Unarmed Combat (Rank 1)
  • Medium Armor Proficiency (Rank 1)

and a person will have to completely learn all of these skills in order to finish the warrior path and get into one of the paths the warrior path leads such as Fighter Path, Ranger Path, Monk Path and similar things.

What I want to ask is: how should I go with the experience system for such a path system? I never tried writing a book like this, so I am afraid I will screw up with the experience system.

Currently I am considering a system where whenever you commit an action you gain 1d10 experience and upon reaching (Rank of the skill^2)*100 you finish learning that skill. However I am afraid that such a skill system will end up preventing development after a certain point.

How do I design a kind of experience system I can use to give my characters a reasonable pace of skill gain without having them hit a bottleneck at a certain point?

  • Welcome to Writing.SE Maiko! If you have a moment please take the tour and visit the help center to learn more about the site. Have fun!
    – Secespitus
    Apr 4, 2018 at 11:42
  • You are asking us to help you devolop the skill system for an RPG, which is off topic as asking what to write. I therefore vote to close this question.
    – user29032
    Apr 4, 2018 at 11:56
  • I am trying to create a skill system for a book that is supposed to give off a RPG vibe. Examples of such books include everybody loves large chests,The legend of randidly bloodhound and everyone else is a returnee. Apr 4, 2018 at 12:12
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    rpg.stackexchange.com ,may be a significantly better fit for this question
    – Andrey
    Apr 4, 2018 at 13:26
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    LitRPGs are a literary genre narrating elements in a MMORPG world and the "real world" at the same time. Asking about general procedures of writing elements of a literary work are on-topic here on Writing.SE. This question is asking for general guidelines as can seen in the paragraph where the OP asks "how should I go with the experience system for such a path system?" I am voting to reopen this question. This is about the procedure. Just because it's not a traditional novel or API documentation it's not suddenly off-topic.There are more kinds of writing
    – Secespitus
    Apr 4, 2018 at 20:53

1 Answer 1


It only prevents development if the earning of new experience stagnates.

As in most RPG's the challenges your characters face should become harder and harder, which means that they will earn more experience with each higher-level encounter.

If you would like some guidance as to how this could be done I recommend taking a look at the Cypher system or one of its implementations, such as Numenera. There you have four different categories of "gaining levels", each of which you have to choose exactly once in whatever order you choose before you can advance to the next tier. Experience is handled a bit differently there: Two players get one EXP whenever the GM introduces some difficulty or all PCs get EXP when they encounter something. With 4/5 EXP you can choose a level-up. The amount of EXP required doesn't rise and therefore there is no need to adapt the amount of EXP you get for doing something. There is also no EXP for the normal "monster slaying". It might give you some inspiration.

Either you have static EXP gain and static level-up cost or you have increasing EXP cost accompanied by higher difficulty challenges that award more EXP. Combining static gain and rising cost will stall the progress and require a lot of grinding, making your book come to a halt. But at the same time it would more realistically show the real world if you are going for such a direction. You can't do everything - there is just not enough time to become a master of all. Either you are a Jack of all trades and a master of none, or you are a master of one, but a beginner in most everything else.

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    Secespitus, as an experienced user of this site you should understand that answering duplicate and off topic questions encourages these kinds of questions.
    – user29032
    Apr 4, 2018 at 11:57
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    @Cloudchaser Yes, I know how this site works. It's just that I disagree with the reason you propose for this question being off-topic. It's not about creating an RPG, it's about writing a book with an RPG feeling. And it's not asking "What should I write?", but "What things do I need to keep in mind when writing about this topic?" Fantasy of all kinds is on-topic and there are many different ways that encompass writing as a craft. For example I love to answer questions about writing for videogame. And I would like to encourage this kind of question. I don't know what duplicate you mean.
    – Secespitus
    Apr 4, 2018 at 12:32
  • Secespitus, the question asks for ideas on what to write, and that is off topic. It does not matter if the RPG rules are for a game or a book that works like a game, it is still an idea generation question.
    – user29032
    Apr 4, 2018 at 12:36

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