Faster advancement for shorter campaigns?

(Sorry if this has been discussed before, I tried searching but couldn’t come up with anything relevant)

So, I get that BW is geared towards long-term play, and I frequently see people talking about year-long campaigns. My group unfortunately doesn’t have the time for that, and although I’m sure BW works fine for shorter campaigns as well, I think the really juicy bits of the advancement system is only really apparent in these longer campaigns. One could ask why I don’t just choose to start at a higher power level if that’s where I want the game to go, but for our group it’s the advancement itself that’s fun - not the end goal of powerful characters.

Has anyone tried to modify the system ever so slightly, to compensate for a shorter campaign cycle? I’m thinking of lowering aptitude by 1 or 2 across the board (with a minimum of 1, of course), to make opening skills a bit faster. I’m also considering making the demands of Epiphany less steep, maybe to a value of 2 Deeds, 7 Persona and 15 Fate. Otherwise I’m afraid we’d never see anyone engaging with this cool mechanic.

Are my fears off the mark? Is there a better way to deal with this, other than tinkering with some core mechanics?

EDIT: could someone move this to Sparks? I don’t know why I posted this in Character Burner, sorry…

There’s still advancement in short-term campaigns, especially with savvy players (who know how to seek out the tests they need).

I’d love to play in/run a long-term campain, and I think it would be great to shade-shift, but I don’t think it’s neccesary for my enjoyment. Personally I rather experience it whenever, than having a poor man’s grey - it’s like all those talking about killing dragons, were the dragons never utilised it’s armoury of breath, flight or even thinking-capacity above “lizard”. :slight_smile:

Some day a campain will come, that will go on-and-on, and we will recognize it by the shades of grey.

Here’s a possibility - consider reducing all Advancement by 1 test for each level - 1 less Routine, 1 less Challenging, 1 less Difficult, to a minimum of 1.


There really is no need for faster advancement in shorter campaigns. Just don’t use the major conflict systems, and get your players to munchkin it out…

A player can usually weasel 2-4 relevant routines per session towards any given skill. Good players can do that for 2-3 things.

Also, by setting your resources cycle short, resources can climb quickly. (If I run a “weekly” cycle again, I must remember to up the ob’s by 1.)

In my just ended 7 session game, each player was able to open at least 3 new skills.

I think they are. We’ve played decently long term campaigns and a number of short one to three session affairs. It has been my experience as both GM and a player that while new skills are hard to come by (take a lot of training) existing ones-- particularly in the B2-B4 category shoot up up up!

My advice. Don’t worry about it. Play it by the book. If you still feel its too slow, and you are getting some downtime in the fiction, let the players use the training/instruction rules to genereate tests while they are off screen.