merias wrote:I use 100xp per HD, despite the Greyhawk rebuke I find it simple and helpful for moving through the first few levels quickly.
Moving through the first levels quickly was what I was thinking about. Due to various real-life changes in the circumstances of my players (children, moving house, etc.), we don't get to play together as often as we used to. When we started as a group in 2011, we played every 2 or 3 weeks, but now we're lucky if we all get together 4 times a year. It's frustrating, from a campaign standpoint.
Now, I enjoy the old-school meatgrinder of 1st level as much as anyone (and, surprisingly, so do my players), but I would also like to get to the D&D "sweet spot" (which, for me, is around levels 3-5) this side of the eschaton, so I've been considering ways to speed up advancement through the early levels without "cheating". Awarding 100 XP per HD for monsters seems like a sensible option, speeding things up at low levels but slowing them down at high levels. I'm pleased to hear that someone else finds it useful.
What about treasure, as jcftao asks? By the book (White Box), 10 orcs would be worth 150 XP. According to Chapter 9, they would have treasure worth, on average, 375 gp (2.5 x 150). But if we give 100 XP per HD, those 10 orcs are worth 1,000 XP and their treasure would be worth, on average, 2,500 gp. It seems like a big jump.
Now, as it happens, I don't usually bother with the S&W system for treasure determination. I tend to use the charts in OD&D, B/X, AD&D, or the Monster & Treasure Assortment. OK, so that's good; it means I don't need to worry about the treasure inflation I just mentioned. However, it affects the ratio of XP awarded, tipping the balance towards monster-killing and away from treasure-retrieving (at low levels), which is something I'm wary of. How do you resolve this dilemma?