D&D 5E Rewarding Overland Travel

Tonguez

A suffusion of yellow
good work, I tend to put all these in a single d20 table rather than multiple lists, but your approach works well and if it generates some fun situations thats all that matters
 

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tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Epic
Are there ways of presenting social or travel situations that aren't just GM-led narration and plot-downloads?

The answer for FRPGing in general is obviously yes. I assume that the same answer is possible within the context of D&D.
Absolutely, for example needing to balance time doing stuff that needs doing against foraging for food & water between time needed to sleep... except then there's outlander that does it while doing that other stuff. Take this example
Outlander doesn't care about that consume spell component or even need to use a spell slot like goodberry because it gives enough food & water for the group automatically just telling the gm 🛑skip🛑 the moment they hear something about time constraints or balancing goals with foraging.

On the encumbrance, even with a 20 pound backpack at a pound of food per day even that's not a big deal to carry weeks of food& a sack holds up to 30 pounds more even if you limit players to one sack & one backpacks. As you yourself note it shouldn't be too tough to buy a bigger container... like a 5gp chest that holds 300 pounds of stuff
 

Ancalagon

Dusty Dragon
The Player's Handbook offers that "in most campaigns, you can use or wear any equipment that you find on your adventures, within the bounds of common sense."

There doesn't need to be a rule that limits how many backpacks you can wear on your back. Common sense is the limiter.
And common sense tells me that back pack comes in different sizes, and that I can wear a back pack AND carry sacks at the same time (up to a certain point).

The encumbrance system in D&D 5e is ... not great. I won't argue that. But the way to fix it is not container size.
 

Rabulias

the Incomparably Shrewd and Clever
On the encumbrance, even with a 20 pound backpack at a pound of food per day even that's not a big deal to carry weeks of food& a sack holds up to 30 pounds more even if you limit players to one sack & one backpacks. As you yourself note it shouldn't be too tough to buy a bigger container... like a 5gp chest that holds 300 pounds of stuff
Emphasis mine. Rations are 2 pounds per day, so 20 pounds is 10 days. Your point is still valid with the default Encumbrance rules. Using the Variant Encumbrance rule makes the 20 pounds have a little more weight, pardon the pun.
 

mrpopstar

Sparkly Dude
And common sense tells me that back pack comes in different sizes, and that I can wear a back pack AND carry sacks at the same time (up to a certain point).

The encumbrance system in D&D 5e is ... not great. I won't argue that. But the way to fix it is not container size.
I completely agree that you can carry pouches!

I said this upthread...
Carrying capacity is limited by the containers you carry on your person. Common sense and realism affords that you wear a backpack (which only holds 30 lb. of equipment), you strap a bedroll and a rope to it, you carry a waterskin (which only holds 1/2 a day's water), you maybe carry a pouch or component pouch (which only hold 1or 2 lb. of equipment), and you carry two or three weapons.

The goliath's powerful build is useful when you're pushing, dragging or lifting, but also when you have an unconscious ally that needs to be thrown over someone's shoulder, or a treasure chest to carry out of the dungeon. It's not for turning the guy into a pack mule.


And of course I'm not against you fashioning a larger backpack for a goliath if that suits your fiction. There's a variant rule for equipment sizes that shows you how to do that.
 

tetrasodium

Legend
Supporter
Epic
Emphasis mine. Rations are 2 pounds per day, so 20 pounds is 10 days. Your point is still valid with the default Encumbrance rules. Using the Variant Encumbrance rule makes the 20 pounds have a little more weight, pardon the pun.
You know I thought the same at first glance when I went to do the math starting with the ration weight until I looked up how much food is needed on page185 of the phb
1629054389726.png

at "one pound of food per day" 20 pounds is ten days in a backpackplus whatever they add via sacks larger containers like the 300 pound capacity chest. Like all things in 5e, the way to fix it is not simply to enforce or modify the obvious rule that at first glance should fix the problem. I know this because I've tried that particular "fix" before...
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
Nice tables to quickly generate sites that can be seen while traveling through the wilderness to a destination.
But what does it add to the game to randomly roll if and when the players come upon of these? What is the gain compare to determining them in advance and putting them down along the party's path?
The same things it does to ever have random encounters tables.
The point of randomly encountered creatures is to put pressure on the players to avoid spending unnecessary time in the dungeon and be discovered by creatures that can cause them harm but offer no rewards. It makes them have to consider leaving some less valuable treasure behind to move faster, or to abandon supplies and tools that are cheap to repair, but might be urgently missed later on.
None of that applies in 5th edition, of course.
No. That isn’t the point of them. That is a way they’ve been used in the past.
The goliath's carrying capacity does not allow the goliath to become a pack mule that carries the party's equipment. They're still limited by the capacity of their backpack and carried pouches.
No, they aren’t. Not unless the DM goes beyond the rules to make them so limited.
Not just routinely, but consistently throughout history. It's not about what equipment and supplies various armies considered necessary, but apparently the maximum weight a healthy fit man can haul along before it interferes with marching. There's always more stuff that would be nice to have on every soldier, but going above 40 kg has always been found to be just too much for marching.
And Goliaths have double the carry capacity and tend to be 8ft tall.
The backpacks and pouches in the Player's Handbook are simply not that big.
Irrelevant. The items in the PHB aren’t an exhaustive list, they’re an example list.
A bard, two nobles, and a rogue can trivialize high stakes conversations to the same degree.
Not in my experience. I don’t see how this is remotely possible.
The real question is whether or not the game is less fun when you hyper-specialize because it seems obvious (at least to me) that a party with four characters contributing much the same thing sees diminishing returns.
An entire party of socialites makes a social campaign better, not worse.
All well and good that dude can offer a piggy-back ride to a frost giant, but a backpack can only hold 30 lb. worth of gear, so choose your equipment wisely.
This is nonsense. Not only can additional bags be attached to a backpack, but everyone knows that backpacks exist that are bigger than that. Common sense requires that characters not be limited to 30lb backpacks.
The Player's Handbook offers that "in most campaigns, you can use or wear any equipment that you find on your adventures, within the bounds of common sense."

There doesn't need to be a rule that limits how many backpacks you can wear on your back. Common sense is the limiter.
Hardly. I’ve worn two backpacks comfortably in real life, and I’ve made a hiking pack from multiple backpacks and similar bags, as well. Not only that, but the idea that Goliaths can’t make bigger backpacks is…wholly absurd.
 

mrpopstar

Sparkly Dude
Welcome to the thread!

And Goliaths have double the carry capacity and tend to be 8ft tall.
The average goliath is more frequently 7.5 ft. tall, to be exact.
😜

Irrelevant. The items in the PHB aren’t an exhaustive list, they’re an example list.
Ok.

An entire party of socialites makes a social campaign better, not worse.
I don't disagree.

The original post outlines the perceived problem that characters are really good at mitigating costs, especially within the exploration pillar. The issue being that the capabilities of a party comprised of druid, two outlanders and a ranger, trivializes the challenges of overland travel.

I offered that a party comprised of bard, two nobles and a rogue, trivializes the challenges of social interaction in the same way, or to the same degree.

This is nonsense. Not only can additional bags be attached to a backpack, but everyone knows that backpacks exist that are bigger than that. Common sense requires that characters not be limited to 30lb backpacks.
Nonsense is a strong word. The complaint is that carrying capacity is too generous. My proposal is that you limit carrying capacity to the container capacity of a backpack and a pouch or two. Issue solved.

Hardly. I’ve worn two backpacks comfortably in real life, and I’ve made a hiking pack from multiple backpacks and similar bags, as well. Not only that, but the idea that Goliaths can’t make bigger backpacks is…wholly absurd.
Absurd is also a strong word, and I never said that you can't make a bigger backpack for your goliath. I pointed out previously that a variant rule on equipment sizes is provided that offers a way to model what the cost of doing so might be.
 

doctorbadwolf

Heretic of The Seventh Circle
I offered that a party comprised of bard, two nobles and a rogue, trivializes the challenges of social interaction in the same way, or to the same degree.
And I disagreed. You seem to have either missed that or ignored it due to the fact I didn’t use the exact same wording as you, so I’ll clarify here. The party of socialites you describe won’t trivialize social challenges to anywhere close to the same degree or at all in the same way, and in fact won’t trivialize social challenges outside of very inexperienced DMs.
Nonsense is a strong word. The complaint is that carrying capacity is too generous. My proposal is that you limit carrying capacity to the container capacity of a backpack and a pouch or two. Issue solved.
It’s an accurate word. Your proposal is presented as if it is referencing rules that are being ignored, which is not the case. Additionally, the proposal can’t be taken seriously by anyone who expects characters to not be limited way beyond how actual real life limits people, or expects the basic mundanities of the game to make some degree of sense at all.
Absurd is also a strong word, and I never said that you can't make a bigger backpack for your goliath. I pointed out previously that a variant rule on equipment sizes is provided that offers a way to model what the cost of doing so might be.
It’s another accurate word. A variant rule isn’t required, nor is any additional cost. The backpack in the PHB is just an example of a basic backpack. That’s it.
 

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