D&D 5E Short Rests: How many does your group get/take between long rests, on average?

How many short rests does your group get/take, on average?


Alright. I've been on record, numerous times, as stating my distaste for forum polls. They have a slew of problems, regardless of whether they support or refute my positions.

However, I'm curious to hear, at least from the unrepresentative, self-selected, can-change-your-vote-at-any-time :)P) population of ENWorld. How many short rests does your group get or take between long rests? If you're a DM, I'd love to hear your thoughts about how restrictive or open you are with rests, short or long? If you're a player, what are your preferred resting conditions, e.g. do you prefer to push on whenever possible even if it means you'll have fewer resources, or do you prefer rest more frequently--or what? Obviously people can be both players and DMs, so answer both questions if you feel you should/can.

Note that I am focusing on "number of short rests between long rests," not "number of short rests per day," because I know that not all groups adhere to the convention that sleeping for the night means a long rest. Of course, I am also curious to see whether/how often people use the alternate scales (since the "standard" scale is pretty clearly "the time between long rests = 1 day, each short rest = 1 hour.")

Edit: Additionally, this assumes that we're talking about actively adventuring characters, not just all possible time spent at the table--you wouldn't expect characters that mostly do social activities to need to "rest" all that often. Thanks for the suggestion, S'mon.

For those who read the first post before voting, or who vote first and read this but want to change their vote after (remember you can unvote!):
"0+" means "we usually don't take any, but might occasionally take one"
"4+" means "we take at least 4 short rests between long rests, but possibly more"

All other numeric values are meant to represent averages. So if you typically have just 1 short rest between long rests, never 0 but occasionally 2, that would be "1-2." If you always have exactly 2 rests, OR if you usually have 2, sometimes 1 or 3, rarely 0 or 4, that would be "2."

"Varies greatly" means you may take none, you may take five, or any number in between--a uniform distribution. Like how "3.5" is the average of 1d6, even though 3.5 isn't a number you can roll--the true value varies too much to be meaningfully described by its average.

"Special snowflake" means that you do something completely different or too specific to fit the above categories, e.g. a homebrew/fanmade alternative resting system (that is, NOT like "a short rest is 5 minutes," which is the same system with a different scale, but rather "there are no Short or Long rests, but there are Bandage Breaks, Meditation Breaks, Food Breaks, ..." etc.--something that completely changes the paradigm) Or you just oppose the poll in general! If you vote this, please explain why--that's where some great discussion can happen.
 
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S'mon

Legend
Voted 1-2, assuming the PCs are adventuring. The DMG says 2 is typical. I'm only allowing 3/day max to prevent spamming of stuff like Fighter Second Wind.
 


delericho

Legend
They can take as many as they want, but they need to understand that taking a rest has consequences - a short rest means a wandering encounter check and very likely a rise in the alert level; a long rest means the bad guys can bring in reinforcements.

(Plus, if we tracked such things, they would need to consume a meal's worth of rations for a short rest, and have a nice secure area in which to take a long rest. But since we don't track such things (in the current campaign), that's a non-issue.)
 

They can take as many as they want, but they need to understand that taking a rest has consequences - a short rest means a wandering encounter check and very likely a rise in the alert level; a long rest means the bad guys can bring in reinforcements.

(Plus, if we tracked such things, they would need to consume a meal's worth of rations for a short rest, and have a nice secure area in which to take a long rest. But since we don't track such things (in the current campaign), that's a non-issue.)

This would be part of why I said "take/get," rather than just "take." Because some groups are limited by hard DM rules (e.g. "no more than 3 between LRs" as per S'mon), while others are limited by "soft" DM rules, e.g. your "rests have consequences." Though it sounds like it's a complex and multifaceted decision your players make, meaning it's too complicated to pin down while still being the same paradigm--perfect for what you voted.

Ironically, although I created the poll, I can't actually vote yet--my only 5e group has not yet taken any rests (the first session ended at the end of our very first combat), so our current rest rate is undefined! :p
 

delericho

Legend
This would be part of why I said "take/get," rather than just "take."

Yep, I spotted that. But...

Ironically, although I created the poll, I can't actually vote yet--my only 5e group has not yet taken any rests (the first session ended at the end of our very first combat), so our current rest rate is undefined! :p

Likewise. We've managed three sessions of 5e. One of these saw the party take a single short rest and then suffer a TPK; the second ended with them taking a second short rest (and then the game collapsed for unrelated reasons); the third was a character-creation setting and so didn't have any rests.

So I can talk about how I'll be handling short rests, but I can't say anything about how many the PCs will take. :)
 

Kryx

Explorer
2 is what is expected. I use a maximum of 2 and encourage taking up to 2 by shortening short rests to 5 minutes.
 

AaronOfBarbaria

Adventurer
The average at my table comes out at 2-3, but there is a pretty wide swing going on to get to that number, not a constant of 2 or 3 rests. It's more like 0 some days, 1 some others, and then 3 or 5 some other days.

It all comes down to the current goals of the party and how much the players feel like they need to hurry if they want to reach that goal.
 

Well, it usually ends up with 2 short rests in my group, if they play out the whole adventuring day in dangerous terrain. If there are non-dangerous sections then usually less.

I'd allow more short rests. My only requirement for doing another short rest is that there was at least one battle fought in between (otherwise I'd count it as single short rest). It's also limited by time. If the adventuring day ends, my group can take a long rest. If they still want to do a short rest, they need to roll a Constitution Ability Check to see if they can go on without sleep.
 

Lord Vangarel

First Post
I don't like them taking more than 2 short rests between long rests however I allow one short rest to be a superfast 5 minute rest rather than the full hour for the other.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
My previous group didn't have a fighter or other class heavily depending on short rests.

So the issue never came up.

Besides, if you're in a position to take an hour's rest, you can often take a full day's rest.

My next group will feature both fighters and a warlock. I expect them to pursue short rests much more actively this time.
 

CapnZapp

Legend
The thing is, the DMG talks high and low about 6-8 encounters and 0-2 short rests per day...

But the game features very little mechanics to actually make that happen.
 

The thing is, the DMG talks high and low about 6-8 encounters and 0-2 short rests per day...

But the game features very little mechanics to actually make that happen.

Not having the DMG myself, I didn't want to say either way. But I'll be honest--this is exactly what I expected to hear. :(
 

Kryx

Explorer
The thing is, the DMG talks high and low about 6-8 encounters and 0-2 short rests per day...

But the game features very little mechanics to actually make that happen.
"We just fought a battle, we dust ourselves off and have a snack before moving on"

What more is needed? The mechanics are already there.

On the topic of never taking short rests - short rests let you spend as many HD as you want. Even if you don't have Short Rest based classes (you likely do), it matters.

Wizards recover spells on short rests, Monks Ki, Fighters Second Wind, Warlocks spells, Cleric Channel Divinity, Bard Song of Rest & Font of Inspiration, etc
 



CapnZapp

Legend
"We just fought a battle, we dust ourselves off and have a snack before moving on"

What more is needed? The mechanics are already there.
I'm taking about the specific number of encounters and short rests. The fact that if you rest for one hour, you're often free to continue that rest for seven more. Conversely, very little forces you to conserve resources and stretch your day into that 8th encounter, when the game plays much faster and more exciting when you strut all your stuff in three encounters and then rest.

You seem to explain the obvious, but I could be mistaken.
 

Grydan

First Post
0-1

Most days, we just don't have a need for a rest.
Other days, we need one and can take one ... and on a good number of those, after we've taken the short rest we don't end up fighting again before our next long rest.
Then there's the days where we could really use multiple short rests, but resting isn't possible because we're in the middle of some ongoing event that doesn't really lend itself to hitting the pause button for an hour.
Days where there's both enough fighting that we'd need multiple rests, and there's enough time and space between fights that we can actually take them, are rare beasts indeed.
 

AaronOfBarbaria

Adventurer
The thing is, the DMG talks high and low about 6-8 encounters and 0-2 short rests per day...

But the game features very little mechanics to actually make that happen.
Such mechanics aren't needed.

The talking about 6-8 encounters per adventuring day and around 2 short rests per adventuring day is not a "you must do this" or even really a "we intend that you do this" statement. It is a statement of observation, more like "This is what turned out to be most typical given the way that things played out among playtesting groups going through campaigns as they chose to."
 

Mercule

Adventurer
My group hews pretty close to the standard 2. In fact, they are often literally referred to as "lunch" and "dinner".

Every now and again, they end up in deep doo and take one early (i.e. shortly after the prior rest). Sometimes, that means they end up with a third, but it usually means they're regrouping before a "strategic withdrawal".
 

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