I'm just wondering, how many XP should I give my players for overcoming The Inheritance module from Dungeon Magazine #26? In case you do not know that adventure, it ends with players retaking a small fort from hobgoblins. My initial idea was to give the adventurers half of total stronghold's construction costs and, of course, experience gained from monsters and treasure.
In core ACKS there is a paragraph that says:
"A character receives 1 XP per 2gp spent constructing a stronghold (castle, sanctum, etc.) used to secure a domain. The XP is earned when the stronghold is completed. If the character ever loses the stronghold, however, the character loses the XP earned from its construction. This may result in the loss of class levels. The character can regain the lost XP by re-taking the stronghold intact. If the stronghold is partially destroyed when re-captured, the character re-gains XP equal to its reduced value."
If I understand that correctly, defender loses the XP and conqueror gains the XP, yes?
What I ended up doing with a group who took the temple from N1 as a stronghold (who were lower level than they should have been for that size stronghold) was :
1) Figure the stronghold value in XP and the theoretical size of the domain that stronghold would secure
2) Look at what portion of the area of that domain is actually "secure" compared against the PC's actions and the theoretical max they could control from Axioms 3
3) Apply the lesser value, subject to the whims of the Judge (I ended up doling it out over time, representing the time it took them to really "settle in" and for the domain morale to stabilize - this parti's a judgement call)
N1 had an existing class 6 settlement, more or less, and the assumed farms/etc; if the fort your players took did not have a ready-to-go-domain, I'd actually suggest giving them more XP than I would have above under the theory that they're not also about to benefit from tax income/etc.
Wow, your approach seems really well thought-out to me!
Hmmmmmmmm... There is no ready-to-go-domain in the module, so I decided that when hobgoblins took the inherited fort (btw. it is more a fortified loremaster's atheneum or house of a magic-user than fort) terrains around the fort were repopulated with various monsters (few lairs) and now the PCs need to retake the domain.
"Although it is not in the rules-as-written, I personally award stronghold XP equal to 1/2 (GP value of new stronghold - current stronghold), if the player makes the new stronghold the seat of his personal domain. He is at risk of losing all of his cumulative XP if he loses his new stronghold, though."
"I also award stronghold XP for capturing an initial stronghold, rather than building one. There were some differences of opinion within the Autarch studio on this rule during the design period, so it didn't make it into the final rules. (Tavis and Greg were more focused on earning the XP for spending the gold, whereas I was more focused on earning the XP for getting a stronghold)."
So in the end I stayed with my initial idea (half of total stronghold's construction costs). We are trying to play every week so there was little time and I had to choose satisfying, but probably not the perfect solution. :)