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D&D 5E Resting Variant

Yaarel

Mind Mage
Resting Variant

The goal of the following Resting Variant is:

• to maintain better balance between those classes that depend on long rest and those classes that dont
• to allow rests to be more flexible for various adventures that have different combat frequencies.

Officially, balance between classes assumes 6 to 8 encounter per long rest.

At the same time, there is roughly 15 encounters until reaching the next level.

In other words:

Balanced gaming has about TWO LONG RESTS PER LEVEL.



Therefore:

ALL RESTS are short rests.

However, twice per level, a player can decide if they want a rest to count as a long rest. But once a player uses up both long rests, the player is stuck with short rests until leveling.

Because all rests are short rests, it doesnt matter how long a rest is.

A rest might be an hour. A rest might be eight hours. Some DMs might want a rest to be a 15-minute breather. Some DMs might have a rest be a week of downtime. It doenst matter. Whatever resting timespan makes sense in the adventure narrative, is the one that is right. In a situation where characters are going door-to-door, encounters will be one after the other, rests will be shorter, and they will advance to the next level quicker. In a situation where characters are at sea, encounters will be more spaced out, rests can be longer, and they will take longer to advance to the next level.

Thus, choosing only two rests per level, both balances classes and allows rests to make more sense according a particular adventure story.





Roughly 15 medium-difficulty encounters per level
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NotAYakk

Legend
Part of the goal of resting mechanics is to permit players to respond to content that is too hard with "get back more resources".

So long as their are modest story (and not direct combat-difficulty) consequences to taking such rests, this works.

Your change does away with this. You can't even heal up wounds by taking a week's vacation.

With a sensible resting mechanism for the presumed pace of the adventure (for a T2 adventure, how many enemies are there between the PCs and a given goal? How fast do they need to deal with them? That is the presumed pacing of the adventure), that permits the DM to throw a bit more than the PCs can be presumed to handle, and let the PCs win more than they lose -- and lose "off screen" in a non-railroad way.
 

"Officially, balance between classes assumes 6 to 8 encounter per long rest.
At the same time, there is roughly 15 encounters until reaching the next level."

Both of these statements are insanely false in any game I run.
 

People really need to read the encounter rules. 6-8 is only the median if the encounters are medium to hard. It's right there! If you throw in a very-hard encounter than you would bring that number down.

I'm just saying that because it creates a misperception. Especially considering most games I've seen find that even 'hard' does not feel hard. It's important to consider if you are actually throwing quite a lot of very hard encounters at the party just for combat to feel tense. (Of course if 'very hard' encounters still seem easy then you may want to play around with the rest mechanics, but at this point 6-8 is a completely arbritrary number).
 
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Yaarel

Mind Mage
People really need to read the encounter rules. 6-8 is only the median if the encounters are medium to hard. It's right there! If you throw in a very-hard encounter than you would bring that number down.

I'm just saying that because it creates a misperception. Especially considering most games I've seen find that even 'hard' does not feel hard. It's important to consider if you are actually throwing quite a lot of very hard encounters at the party just for combat to feel tense. (Of course if 'very hard' encounters still seem easy then you may want to play around with the rest mechanics, but at this point 6-8 is a completely arbritrary number).
The Resting Variant tends to even out. If encounters are mostly hard, then leveling will happen sooner, but they will need the healing more.


Part of the goal of resting mechanics is to permit players to respond to content that is too hard with "get back more resources".
The Resting Variant allows each player to choose when to "get back more resources".

Likewise, if one uses up the long rests too soon, then future encounters become more dangerous. So the long rests involve some resource management.


So long as their are modest story (and not direct combat-difficulty) consequences to taking such rests, this works.
If so, the default rest mechanics sometimes forces the story to make less sense.

The Resting Variant allows whatever pacing makes sense according to the story.


Your change does away with this. You can't even heal up wounds by taking a week's vacation.
If the adventure is over, and the characters are on "vacation". They can be assumed to start the next adventure with full refresh.


With a sensible resting mechanism for the presumed pace of the adventure (for a T2 adventure, how many enemies are there between the PCs and a given goal? How fast do they need to deal with them? That is the presumed pacing of the adventure), that permits the DM to throw a bit more than the PCs can be presumed to handle, and let the PCs win more than they lose -- and lose "off screen" in a non-railroad way.
If the DM "throws more at" the characters, the characters will level sooner.
 

Yaarel

Mind Mage
By the way, I determine whether an encounter is Easy, Medium, or Hard (or near-TPK), AFTER the encounter is over.

A standard encounter counts as 1, a cakewalk counts as ½ an encounter, and a hard encounter counts as 1½ or 2.

Then I level, by counting encounters.

It is the best method of experience I have done, better than xp, and better than plot points.
 


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