In a game I played and in a design of mine, I have a situation where something gives bonus to a die roll for each player.

Each player rolls a die and add their bonus. The highest roll + bonus is the winner.

For example, Player one has a total of +2 and player two a total of +5.

Now the +2 bonus of the first players is somewhat canceling the bonus of the 2nd player. So a +2/+5 bonus is the equivalent of a 0/+3 bonus or even a +252/+255 bonus. In the end, what matters is that there is a difference of 3 points.

Now I find this pretty dull, since for example, giving your self a +1 bonus, or removing 1 point on your opponent has the same results.

Now I was looking for alternative ways to calculate linear bonus which gives more interesting results and possibilities. I have found a few solutions which are not that interesting and would like to hear more suggestions.

**A- Bonus is triangular, or another pattern**. For example, 1 bonus point does not equal directly +1 to your die roll. You need to accumulate more and more points before you get a bonus. For triangular numbers it could give something like:

1 = +1, 3 = +2, 6 = +3, 10 = +4,

This is somewhat interesting because you cannot get very high bonus if you do abusive combination. You can also be in a situation where a player has exactly 6 points, and making him lose point make his bonus drop by one rank.

**B- Maximum bonus**: There is a roof to the maximum bonus you accumulate. When you reduce your opponent's level, you reduce the maximum instead of the bonus. So if the limit is +5 and a player has +7, then he gets +5, but if you give him a -1, the maximum drop to +4. So there is an advantage to drop your enemy value even if he exceed the maximum.

**C-Not a direct contested roll**: If players roll against a target number, giving yourself a bonus increase your chances to reach your target number, while a minus to your opponent reduce his chances to succeed. So the bonus does not directly cancel each other.

Any other ideas?