WISH 77: Contributions and Influence

What do you think the value of contributions to a game is? Do you think it’s fair for the GM to give out experience or character points for contributions? If so, what qualifies? What about the informal value of contributions? Do they balance or unbalance a game?

For the most part, I’m against the idea of giving extra experience or character points to a player because of a contribution. I think the informal value of most contributions in shaping the world and getting the player more involved in it should constitute reward enough. If a player feels inspired to do a contribution of some kind, then they should do it, and hopefully it’ll help improve the game for both the players and the GM. It shouldn’t serve as a method for advancing a character’s power (in terms of stats and the like) beyond that of the other characters in the game. It’s then that contributions can become unbalancing. As Ginger pointed out in her answer, the more informal benefits of doing a contribution are the sorts of things an engaged player will get anyway, so those are less of a threat to game balance.