Unearthed Arcana Into the Wild: New Unearthed Arcana Covers Wilderness Exploration

Ohh the Nentir Vale - Moon Hills example that Mearls had showed a screenshot of before. Nice.

Ohh the Nentir Vale - Moon Hills example that Mearls had showed a screenshot of before. Nice.
 

Gradine

The Elephant in the Room (she/they)
I'm a huge fan of the Planar Confluence stuff; I think it's a fantastic way to model, for instance, manifest zones in Eberron.
 

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mrpopstar

Sparkly Dude
How does the ranger's Natural Explorer feature interact with the Navigation DC? If the ranger's group can't get lost except by magical means, do groups with a ranger present auto-succeed?

:confused:
 

Ristamar

Adventurer
Agreed, but isn’t a consequence for trying again exactly what the risk of random encounters provides?

Maybe it wasn't clear when I disagreed with [MENTION=6784745]MagicSN[/MENTION], but I'm in favor of random encounters and repeated attempts should have consequences (more random encounters, if nothing else). Of course, while most random encounters may not be relevant to the PC's current interests, there's no reason some shouldn't be tailored to hint at other plots or world building elements.
 
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mrpopstar

Sparkly Dude
Content along these lines is everything I need in my D&D life! I'm absolutely a survival horror-type DM, so I can (and will) use all of this. -- Definitely needs some refinement, though.

:)
 

Remathilis

Legend
This is somewhat interesting, but in my Planescape campaign I'm adapting the 5E Middle Earth rules, and I'm infinitely more excited for it. I appreciate how they come up with a much more interesting understanding of how to make the failure of the DC do something other than "they don't reach the Dungeon that is the whole point of my adventure so I'm going to wind up fudging that DC because otherwise I have no game to run"
The issue, of course, is what those consequences should be...

Right now, exploration is mostly a breezed over concept as there is few resources to track. In theory, food and water are resources to track (as being lost or waylaid could cost you both) but few DMs worry about tracking the minutiae of rations (hell, most don't track arrows). Besides, an outlander makes automatic food recovery and hunting or foraging is a survival check away.

So the only cost to failing a check is time; either as players (going through random encounters that might not further the plot) a characters, or both.

Perhaps some form of stamina mechanic (combining exhaustion and hp loss from environmental hazards) that measured your ability to withstand travel might work. That way, the effect of things like being lost, starved, caught in the rain, attacked by mosquitos, or chilled to the bone) could sap your strength. Resting at a non-dangerous place (like an inn or residence) could recover them. Seems like it would be another complicated system to track.
 

MagicSN

First Post
here are (or should be) consequences for trying again. Time and resources are limited. If the tax to find or reach the destination is negligible, there shouldn't be any checks involved. Just let the party fast forward to their destination and ignore these types of mechanics.

If it is just fast forward - skip the whole traveling and directly start at the destination with the game session. Neither random tables nor skipping forward is interesting.

Instead of rolling on tables you think of an interesting scene to happen, one which presents the character with a hard choice to make or present another obstacle (one that is not just "x enemies of type y randomly rolled"). Then they need to decide how to overcome the obstacle, and every failure will lead to a consequence (one which is more "interesting" than getting off-track for 2d6 miles) - and failure and success as well might result in something the players will remember for a long time. Possible the consequences of decisions will make them never arrive at their destination - possible they will arrive early. But very likely more interesting situations will arrive than from a random table. Why roll on a random table, when you can also design a situation, include maybe some backstories of characters? Maybe re-introduce some old acquaintences of the characters? Or the adversaries make a move? The game lives of situations, obstacles and what the players will think of to overcome their obstacles - not of random tables.

But true, to each his own and of course Unearthed Arcana is free content, so nothing to complain there ;-)
 

mrpopstar

Sparkly Dude
The issue, of course, is what those consequences should be...

Right now, exploration is mostly a breezed over concept as there is few resources to track. In theory, food and water are resources to track (as being lost or waylaid could cost you both) but few DMs worry about tracking the minutiae of rations (hell, most don't track arrows). Besides, an outlander makes automatic food recovery and hunting or foraging is a survival check away.

So the only cost to failing a check is time; either as players (going through random encounters that might not further the plot) a characters, or both.

Perhaps some form of stamina mechanic (combining exhaustion and hp loss from environmental hazards) that measured your ability to withstand travel might work. That way, the effect of things like being lost, starved, caught in the rain, attacked by mosquitos, or chilled to the bone) could sap your strength. Resting at a non-dangerous place (like an inn or residence) could recover them. Seems like it would be another complicated system to track.
Food, water, and exhaustion are built into the current adventuring rules regarding travel. I think this UA simply seeks to make them more prominent and more easily utilized in the game.

Exploration is my favorite pillar!
 

Remathilis

Legend
Food, water, and exhaustion are built into the current adventuring rules regarding travel. I think this UA simply seeks to make them more prominent and more easily utilized in the game.

Exploration is my favorite pillar!
It's sorta realized in the game; but right now it's a mix of the exhaustion rules and hp loss, with some things (like inclement weather) not doing much at all. It's a hodgepodge of systems and could use a tad more tightening and consequence so that it becomes akin to how hp is tracked though combat...

That said, the article starts with a good idea and if I'd love to see more sample terrains done...
 

mrpopstar

Sparkly Dude
It's sorta realized in the game; but right now it's a mix of the exhaustion rules and hp loss, with some things (like inclement weather) not doing much at all. It's a hodgepodge of systems and could use a tad more tightening and consequence so that it becomes akin to how hp is tracked though combat...

That said, the article starts with a good idea and if I'd love to see more sample terrains done...
Never underestimate the crushing, destructive power of inclement weather!

My group adventures extensively in wild and dangerous northern climes (tundra, taiga, muskeg), so unexpected storms are a very real hazard. -- The most impactful death they've experienced was an important and much loved NPC guide who succumbed to exhaustion.
 
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Ed Laprade

First Post
As is usual for me, I've only read the first page of comments, so someone else may have already made the point I'm about to.

What if the characters have DIRECTIONS? That is not mentioned in the article, and should have an effect on the DC. And where's the forth part of the rules, camping?
 

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