So what does resource management add to the game? i.e. In what way does it make the game more fun? Examples are appreciated.
Pete has his character the Elven Archer Ezar. He starts with just 20 arrows in his quiver. So first off he has to be aware he can't just spam arrow attacks. Even with the rule that he can find 50% of his missed arrows intact, he will run out quick if he shoots of arrows every round. Ezar is ready with quick crafting improvised arrows. Pete has to stay alert and pay attention: any time arrow materials are found he has to take some. Pete does not just sit back and ask "can we do the next combat encounter now?". He is always engaged in finding and making more arrows. And at times craft some arrows. This also brings in the fun twist that he can make arrows of found special materials too. If the adventure will take place in a general area, Ezar will make some safe spots of arrows (and other things). He is also on the look out for other archers, so he can buy or trade or steal arrows. Arrows are also treasure for Ezar. A notable adventure setting was the Siege of Castleguard, where Ezar had to jump, run, climb and tumble all over the castle battlefield. He'd shoot off an arrow or two, dodge for some cover, then shoot another arrow. Then melee fight over to a dead goblin archer and grab his quiver, shoot off some arrows and then dodge back into cover.
Compared to the other side, player Donny and his Archer Bowie : where the DM and Player say "keeping track of arrows is no fun", so they make the house rule "the archer has infinite arrows as that is more fun". So every round of combat, the player just spams arrows. Really at any time the character just shoots some arrows.
So take something simple like the evil wizards familiar bat. It's a small, hard to hit target. With Ezar only having three arrows left, Pete does not risk trying to shoot the bat....he waits for a good shot when he will have some advantage. Donny, just spams the sky full of arrows...10, 20 shots don't matter. Sooner or later he hits the bat and is all happy he "did" something. The same way at the siege Bowie just sits in a tower and spams arrows every round as Donny tries not to fall asleep.
Another great example is doing a Spelljammer "Firefly like " game. A band of misfits on a spaceship doing jobs for money:
The Soft Firefly Game: By agreed house rules the player characters infinite mundane items, both for all the characters and the ship. So that is infinite air, food and water. Infinite repair supplies. And infinite mundane items for each character. Plus as typical adventures the PCs are super rich. Ship damage and such is just auto repaired in sudden 'downtimes' because it's more 'fun' that way. Though the DM adds a pathetically low 'upkeep cost' that the players can pay automatically. So this plays out like a typical such game: the players only want levels, power, and magic loot. They only care about money if they can by magic stuff with it. They don't have a "need" to even take any Jobs. When an NPC offers a job and the players don't like it, they just tell the DM "pass". And the DM agrees not to force things, like have the evil NPC force the characters to do the job. They just want to have aimless fun, they don't care about fictional problems of NPCs.
The above game(not mine) lasted three whole weeks before the quit as it "did not feel like Firefly".......
Enter my game. Where they have to keep track of every item. Not just all the PCs personal items, but all the ships supplies and food, water and air. Only two hours into the first adventure and all the PCs are quite poor. They have to pool all their money just for ship supplies. At the start of that second hour they spot a pirate ship....and blindly attack. the fight does not go well for them, but they escape....now with a baddy damaged ship. And no money. This has them limp over to the closest asteroid port...of thri-kreen. they are not too welcome, but have no choice but to role play and act nice just to get some repairs done on their ship. They have no choice but to do three jobs for various NPCs just to get some repairs done. They betray the last NPC and try to steal a ton of loot...but as they (both players and characters) fight over the loot...they loose all of it. But they get away in thier now slightly fixed ship. As they are being chased they chose to hide in the 'outer rim'. It's a bunch of short adventure jobs, as they limp from place to place....just barley getting enough supplies to continue on...and now a bit of loot. They do suffer a huge setback trying to hunt some space whales, but do get on the good side of a young radiant dragon who does fix up the ship a bit. They finally make it to an outer rim lizard man town, and find a thri-kreen warship waiting. They don't have any supplies left so they have to sneak into town....and they do, barley. Now they are hiding and trying to keep a low profile while they get supplies and fix their ship...if they can get enough loot to do all that.......