Dungeons and Dragons Movement 3.5 PBP RPG

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Movement

There are three movement scales, as follows.

  • Tactical, for combat, measured in feet (or squares) per round.

  • Local, for exploring an area, measured in feet per minute.

  • Overland, for getting from place to place, measured in miles per hour or miles per day.

Modes of Movement: While moving at the different movement scales, creatures generally walk, hustle, or run.

Walk: A walk represents unhurried but purposeful movement at 3 miles per hour for an unencumbered human.

Hustle: A hustle is a jog at about 6 miles per hour for an unencumbered human. A character moving his or her speed twice in a single round, or moving that speed in the same round that he or she performs a standard action or another move action is hustling when he or she moves.

Run (x3): Moving three times speed is a running pace for a character in heavy armor. It represents about 9 miles per hour for a human in full plate.

Run (x4): Moving four times speed is a running pace for a character in light, medium, or no armor. It represents about 12 miles per hour for an unencumbered human, or 8 miles per hour for a human in chainmail.

Tactical Movement

Use tactical movement for combat. Characters generally don't walk during combat-they hustle or run. A character who moves his or her speed and takes some action is hustling for about half the round and doing something else the other half.

Hampered Movement: Difficult terrain, obstacles, or poor visibility can hamper movement. When movement is hampered, each square moved into usually counts as two squares, effectively reducing the distance that a character can cover in a move.

If more than one condition applies, multiply together all additional costs that apply. (This is a specific exception to the normal rule for doubling)

In some situations, your movement may be so hampered that you don't have sufficient speed even to move 5 feet (1 square). In such a case, you may use a full-round action to move 5 feet (1 square) in any direction, even diagonally. Even though this looks like a 5-foot step, it's not, and thus it provokes attacks of opportunity normally. (You can't take advantage of this rule to move through impassable terrain or to move when all movement is prohibited to you.)

You can't run or charge through any square that would hamper your movement.

Local Movement

Characters exploring an area use local movement, measured in feet per minute.

Walk: A character can walk without a problem on the local scale.

Hustle: A character can hustle without a problem on the local scale. See Overland Movement, below, for movement measured in miles per hour.

Run: A character with a Constitution score of 9 or higher can run for a minute without a problem. Generally, a character can run for a minute or two before having to rest for a minute

Overland Movement

Characters covering long distances cross-country use overland movement. Overland movement is measured in miles per hour or miles per day. A day represents 8 hours of actual travel time. For rowed watercraft, a day represents 10 hours of rowing. For a sailing ship, it represents 24 hours.

Walk: A character can walk 8 hours in a day of travel without a problem. Walking for longer than that can wear him or her out (see Forced March, below).

Hustle: A character can hustle for 1 hour without a problem. Hustling for a second hour in between sleep cycles deals 1 point of nonlethal damage, and each additional hour deals twice the damage taken during the previous hour of hustling. A character who takes any nonlethal damage from hustling becomes fatigued.

A fatigued character can't run or charge and takes a penalty of -2 to Strength and Dexterity. Eliminating the nonlethal damage also eliminates the fatigue.

Run: A character can't run for an extended period of time.

Attempts to run and rest in cycles effectively work out to a hustle.

Terrain: The terrain through which a character travels affects how much distance he or she can cover in an hour or a day (see Table: Terrain and Overland Movement). A highway is a straight, major, paved road. A road is typically a dirt track. A trail is like a road, except that it allows only single-file travel and does not benefit a party traveling with vehicles. Trackless terrain is a wild area with no paths.

Forced March: In a day of normal walking, a character walks for 8 hours. The rest of the daylight time is spent making and breaking camp, resting, and eating.

A character can walk for more than 8 hours in a day by making a forced march. For each hour of marching beyond 8 hours, a Constitution check (DC 10, +2 per extra hour) is required. If the check fails, the character takes 1d6 points of nonlethal damage. A character who takes any nonlethal damage from a forced march becomes fatigued. Eliminating the nonlethal damage also eliminates the fatigue. It's possible for a character to march into unconsciousness by pushing himself too hard.

Mounted Movement: A mount bearing a rider can move at a hustle. The damage it takes when doing so, however, is lethal damage, not nonlethal damage. The creature can also be ridden in a forced march, but its Constitution checks automatically fail, and, again, the damage it takes is lethal damage. Mounts also become fatigued when they take any damage from hustling or forced marches.

See Table: Mounts and Vehicles for mounted speeds and speeds for vehicles pulled by draft animals.

Waterborne Movement: See Table: Mounts and Vehicles for speeds for water vehicles.

Table: Movement and Distance

------- Speed -------

15 feet

20 feet

30 feet

40 feet

One Round (Tactical) 1

Walk

15 ft.

20 ft.

30 ft.

40 ft.

Hustle

30 ft.

40 ft.

60 ft.

80 ft.

Run (x3)

45 ft.

60 ft.

90 ft.

120 ft.

Run (x4)

60 ft.

80 ft.

120 ft.

160 ft.

One Minute (Local)

Walk

150 ft.

200 ft.

300 ft.

400 ft.

Hustle

300 ft.

400 ft.

600 ft.

800 ft.

Run (x3)

450 ft.

600 ft.

900 ft.

1,200 ft.

Run (x4)

600 ft.

800 ft.

1,200 ft.

1,600 ft.

One Hour (Overland)

Walk

1-1/2 miles

2 miles

3 miles

4 miles

Hustle

3 miles

4 miles

6 miles

8 miles

Run

-

-

-

-

One Day (Overland)

Walk

12 miles

16 miles

24 miles

32 miles

Hustle

-

-

-

-

Run

-

-

-

-

1 Tactical movement is often measured in squares on the battle grid (1 square = 5 feet) rather than feet.

Table: Hampered Movement

Condition

Additional Movement Cost

Difficult terrain

x2

Obstacle1

x2

Poor visibility

x2

Impassable

-

1 May require a skill check

Table: Terrain and Overland Movement

Terrain

Highway

Road or Trail

Trackless

Desert, sandy

x1

x1/2

x1/2

Forest

x1

x1

x1/2

Hills

x1

x3/4

x1/2

Jungle

x1

x3/4

x1/4

Moor

x1

x1

x3/4

Mountains

x3/4

x3/4

x1/2

Plains

x1

x1

x3/4

Swamp

x1

x3/4

x1/2

Tundra, frozen

x1

x3/4

x3/4

Table: Mounts and Vehicles

Mount/Vehicle

Per Hour

Per Day

Mount (carrying load)

Light horse or light warhorse

6 miles

48 miles

Light horse (151-450 lb.)1

4 miles

32 miles

Light warhorse (231-690 lb.)1

4 miles

32 miles

Heavy horse or heavy warhorse

5 miles

40 miles

Heavy horse (201-600 lb.)1

3-1/2 miles

28 miles

Heavy warhorse (301-900 lb.)1

3-1/2 miles

28 miles

Pony or warpony

4 miles

32 miles

Pony (76-225 lb.)1

3 miles

24 miles

Warpony (101-300 lb.)1

3 miles

24 miles

Donkey or mule

3 miles

24 miles

Donkey (51-150 lb.)1

2 miles

16 miles

Mule (231-690 lb.)1

2 miles

16 miles

Dog, riding

4 miles

32 miles

Dog, riding (101-300 lb.)1

3 miles

24 miles

Cart or wagon

2 miles

16 miles

Ship

Raft or barge (poled or towed)2

1/2 mile

5 miles

Keelboat (rowed)2

1 mile

10 miles

Rowboat (rowed)2

1-1/2 miles

15 miles

Sailing ship (sailed)

2 miles

48 miles

Warship (sailed and rowed)

2-1/2 miles

60 miles

Longship (sailed and rowed)

3 miles

72 miles

Galley (rowed and sailed)

4 miles

96 miles

1 Quadrupeds, such as horses, can carry heavier loads than characters can. See Carrying Capacity, above, for more information.

2 Rafts, barges, keelboats, and rowboats are used on lakes and rivers.

If going downstream, add the speed of the current (typically 3 miles per hour) to the speed of the vehicle. In addition to 10 hours of being rowed, the vehicle can also float an additional 14 hours, if someone can guide it, so add an additional 42 miles to the daily distance traveled. These vehicles can't be rowed against any significant current, but they can be pulled upstream by draft animals on the shores.

Moving in Three Dimensions

Tactical Aerial Movement

Once movement becomes three-dimensional and involves turning in midair and maintaining a minimum velocity to stay aloft, it gets more complicated. Most flying creatures have to slow down at least a little to make a turn, and many are limited to fairly wide turns and must maintain a minimum forward speed. Each flying creature has a maneuverability, as shown on Table: Maneuverability. The entries on the table are defined below.

Minimum Forward Speed: If a flying creature fails to maintain its minimum forward speed, it must land at the end of its movement. If it is too high above the ground to land, it falls straight down, descending 150 feet in the first round of falling. If this distance brings it to the ground, it takes falling damage. If the fall doesn't bring the creature to the ground, it must spend its next turn recovering from the stall. It must succeed on a DC 20 Reflex save to recover. Otherwise it falls another 300 feet. If it hits the ground, it takes falling damage. Otherwise, it has another chance to recover on its next turn.

Hover: The ability to stay in one place while airborne.

Move Backward: The ability to move backward without turning around.

Reverse: A creature with good maneuverability uses up 5 feet of its speed to start flying backward.

Turn: How much the creature can turn after covering the stated distance.

Turn in Place: A creature with good or average maneuverability can use some of its speed to turn in place.

Maximum Turn: How much the creature can turn in any one space.

Up Angle: The angle at which the creature can climb.

Up Speed: How fast the creature can climb.

Down Angle: The angle at which the creature can descend.

Down Speed: A flying creature can fly down at twice its normal flying speed.

Between Down and Up: An average, poor, or clumsy flier must fly level for a minimum distance after descending and before climbing. Any flier can begin descending after a climb without an intervening distance of level flight.

Table: Maneuverability

Maneuverability

Perfect

Good

Average

Poor

Clumsy

Minimum forward speed

None

None

Half

Half

Half

Hover

Yes

Yes

No

No

No

Move backward

Yes

Yes

No

No

No

Reverse

Free

-5 ft.

No

No

No

Turn

Any

90o/5 ft.

45o/5 ft.

45o/5 ft.

45o/10 ft.

Turn in place

Any

+90o/-5 ft.

+45o/-5 ft.

No

No

Maximum turn

Any

Any

90o

45o

45o

Up angle

Any

Any

60o

45o

45o

Up speed

Full

Half

Half

Half

Half

Down angle

Any

Any

Any

45o

45o

Down speed

Double

Double

Double

Double

Double

Between down and up

0

0

5 ft.

10 ft.

20 ft.

Evasion and Pursuit

In round-by-round movement, simply counting off squares, it's impossible for a slow character to get away from a determined fast character without mitigating circumstances. Likewise, it's no problem for a fast character to get away from a slower one.

When the speeds of the two concerned characters are equal, there's a simple way to resolve a chase: If one creature is pursuing another, both are moving at the same speed, and the chase continues for at least a few rounds, have them make opposed Dexterity checks to see who is the faster over those rounds. If the creature being chased wins, it escapes. If the pursuer wins, it catches the fleeing creature.

Sometimes a chase occurs overland and could last all day, with the two sides only occasionally getting glimpses of each other at a distance. In the case of a long chase, an opposed Constitution check made by all parties determines which can keep pace the longest. If the creature being chased rolls the highest, it gets away. If not, the chaser runs down its prey, outlasting it with stamina.

Moving Around in Squares

In general, when the characters aren't engaged in round-by-round combat, they should be able to move anywhere and in any manner that you can imagine real people could. A 5-foot square, for instance, can hold several characters; they just can't all fight effectively in that small space. The rules for movement are important for combat, but outside combat they can impose unnecessary hindrances on character activities.


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