Movement And Fatigue

The lives of adventures happen at three distinct speeds: the leisurely or cautious normal pacing, the swift and sometimes rushed hustling pace, and the desperate pace of the flat-out. These are described below.

Normal Pace
Whenever you fill your round with a single move or standard action, you are moving at a n normal pace. There are a lot of actions that can be taken at this pace, as long as they aren’t paired with other actions, since most actions in the game are either standard or move-equivalent actions. A ‘full-round action’ is never a normal paced action despite the fact that it is only one action during your entire round. This is because it uses both your standard and move actions for the roud.

For the purposes of overland or local movement, this pace includes taking only a single move action to move up your base speed in one of your movement modes for the round. When this is done by humanoids with their base land speed we call it walking, but it’s no more tiring for a bird to fly or a mole to burrow at their base speeds. Moving in a fashion for which you do not have a base speed, like climbing a wall without a climb speed, may or may not fall into this pace depending on the actions required.

Hustling Pace
Any round in which you take both a move and a standard action is a round spent at the hustling pace. This category also includes many full-round actions, but not all of them. Casting a spell with a 1 round casting time is a full-round action at the hustling pace, while running is a full-round action at the flat-out pace.

For the purposes of overland or local movement, this pace includes taking either a single or a double move action with one of your movement modes for the round. When this is done by humanoids with their base land speed we call it jogging or hustling (if they take another action in addition to movement). Moving in a fashion for which you do not have a base speed, like climbing a wall without a climb speed, may or may not fall into this pace depending on the actions required.

Flat-Out Pace
When a creature throws caution to the wind, and sacrifices endurance for speed, they are moving at a flat-out pace. There are few actions that even allow this pace, and almost all of them are movement. All flat-out actions are full-round actions.

As a full-round action, a creature can take up to 4 movement actions in exchange for caution and precision. They may even split their movement actions among different movement modes, but all modes must be natural for the creature. Most humanoids can only do this with their base walk speed, but flying, swimming, climbing, burrowing, and any other natural movement speed is also eligible. A creature with a base land speed of 30’ and a burrowing speed of 20’ could thus run 60’ on land before burrowing the final 40’ by taking this action. You may not take a run action if you are fatigued or exhausted.

Special: Some characters may take more or less than 4 movement actions as part of a run as a result of feats, armor, or encumbrance. These movement limits supersede the 4 movement actions listed here.

Combining Pacing
Taking actions at the different paces tires a character out at different rates. Everyone can move flat-out for 1 round per point of constitution, so even those of average constitution can run for at least a minute. Moving at a hustling pace for 1 minute is equivalent to 1 round of running. As most fights happen at this pace, this means that battles lasting longer than 1 minute per point of constitution may be hazardous for characters. Lastly, moving in a normal way for 15 minutes is equivalent to 1 round of running. While that doesn’t have much bearing on combat, it does mean that you can walk across the mountains for a few hours, resting for a few minutes every hour, without really wearing yourself out. Exactly like a heroic adventurer should.

Fatigue
Whatever action pace brings you to your limit, characters have to start making checks to see if they become tired once there. This is an Endurance skill check, or just a constitution check if the skill is untrained. The the Endurance skill for more information.

Overland Movement

Your normal marching overland movement rate is equal to your base rate divided by 10, but is measured in miles instead of feet. This is a downward rounding of the full distance you would move at your base rate for every round in an hour, as overland movement doesn't generally account for minor rest stops or time spent detouring around or navigating through gullies, dense brambles, canyons, and similar terrain features.

As a minor simplification for ease of use, overland movement is determined on a per half-hour basis. Each half hour can be spent at a normal march, a forced march, or resting. The distances associated with the are presented here for ease of reference, and the two different types of marching are discussed below.

Base Speed
15 20 25 30
Normal Marching Per Half Hour
Unhurried Pace 3/4 mile 1 mile 1 and 1/4 miles 1 and 1/2 miles
Hustling Pace 1 and 1/2 miles 2 miles 2 and 1/2 miles 3 miles
Flat-Out Pace (×3) 2 and 1/4 miles 3 miles 3 and 3/4 miles 4 and 1/2 miles
Flat-Out Pace (×4) 3 miles 4 miles 5 miles 6 miles
Forced Marching per Half Hour
Unhurried Pace 1 mile 1 and 1/3 miles 1 and 2/3 miles 2 miles
Hustling Pace 2 miles 2 and 2/3 miles 3 and 1/3 miles 4 miles
Flat-Out Pace (×3) 3 miles 4 miles 5 miles 6 miles
Flat-Out Pace (×4) 4 miles 5 and 1/3 miles 6 and 2/3 miles 8 miles

Normal Marching
Normal overland movement includes time spent moving around gullies and dense patches of forest and over hills and all sorts of minor "straight line" distance deviations that add up to make 3 miles per hour in any specific direction rather generous. The other thing to remember is that you're often taking breaks during this movement. You don't just start walking and stop 8 hours later with no breaks in between. You have all sorts of physical concerns that slow you down or stop you temporarily, and this time spent not walking is time spent not making any progress at all.

Importantly though, it is time spent resting. And since you can walk for 15 minutes per point of constitution and only need to rest 1 round for each of those 15 minute periods, even a minute resting per hour is enough to reset your exertion clock. Because of this you can keep up a normal overland pace for as long as you want to, subject to available light and evening rest requirements. Most people walk for 8 or 9 hours before making camp, because making camp is a somewhat time consuming process that often requires light. If you just want to sleep in a bed roll on a rock without a fire you can walk farther without too much of a problem.

Forced marching does not allow periodic rests, but requires a half hour rest stop to reset the exertion clock and cure any fatigue that has been acquired. If a period includes any forced marching, you do not gain the benefit of periodic rests that occur before the next full half hour rest, and must take a half-hour rest at the end of the current movement block to become rested. Once you start a forced march, you may as well continue for as long as reasonable.

Forced Marching
A forced march is where you try as hard as you can to get that extra distance you normally lose to breaks and detours. You don't stop to rest, you don't stop to eat, you don't stop for the bathroom, and you don't stop at all except as scheduled. Anything that can be done while walking, gets done while walking. Anyone who stops has to hustle to catch back up, which makes the break not particularly useful.

And what do you get for all of this extra effort? You get an extra 1/3 of your normal per hour travel distance; for characters with a base speed of 30 and 3 miles per hour this becomes 4 miles per hour. This is slightly more than you would have lost in normal movement, but it's a convenient simplification. Most creatures can forced march for 4 hours before they become fatigued and take substantial subdual damage, after which they need to rest for a half hour to recover from fatigue and reset the exertion counter. A second push of 4 hours is generally possible, but some creatures may succumb to exhaustion or unconsciousness.

This pace is sometimes worth doing when you really need to get somewhere nearby slightly faster, but you take a lot more subdual damage for your trouble and low level characters aren't in any shape to fight when they're done walking. Since there is no longer an 8 hour travel restriction, it's generally advised that you do not push people on a forced march if you just need to go a bit farther in a day. An extra hour or two of normal movement is probably better for everyone, but if time is of the essence a forced march may serve better.

Taking 10 and Forced Marching
The special rule for exceeding your limits at the normal pace is a lifesaver here, literally. Without it, about half of any group with no ranks in endurance and an average of 10 constitution will be exhausted, or worse, within 3 hours because of the 3 checks they have to make and the penalties of rolling poorly. Because of the special rule, however, the same group can walk for 4 hours and need only a half-hour rest to cure fatigue and reset the exertion clock. It is unlikely to heal the accrued subdual damage, however.

Mixed Marching
If a period includes any forced marching you must take a half-hour rest to become fully rested at the end of the period, and do not gain the benefit of periodic rests from normal marching until this rest period has been taken. Therefore, once you start a forced march you may as well continue for as long as reasonable. This is a bookkeeping simplification solely aimed at preventing people from micro-managing the number of rounds spent forced marching in order to maximize distance without risking subdual damage and fighting capacity.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License