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Old 04-22-2017, 08:50 PM   #1
cupbearer
 
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Default Weariness as a narrative resource

Hi,

What if prolonged journeys far from home and a warm bed, as well as the day to day stress of facing danger and the elements of outdoors had the mechanical effect of slowly eroding the parties will-power and of producing weariness? In the Gurps Fantasy game i plan to run, much of the story is concentrated around journeys taken by a group of Questing adventurers, and in my search to make Weariness of being on the road a mechanical element of the game I came across "The One Ring rpg". This particular game was interesting to me because in their random encounters rules, in addition to telling you what monsters you might find on your journey, they also had mechanical effects for how high or low the characters spirits were... the characters could become tired, and eventually miserable and this made them weaker in a mechanical way. I wonder how we might be able to model weariness (in this case of the hard life of an adventurer) as a resource the players manage in GURPS terms?

Does anyone know of any stuff in RAW that might help with this? My idea is that i would want the characters to have a mechanical reason to not camp outside, and to want to order an ale, and sit by a fire, or to spend a winter in a city rather than head out into the cold tundra etc.... I know i can hit them with exposure rules and whatever else, but the truth is that people need a break sometimes, and i believe in this tale we are weaving together it is in genre to be weary of the quest itself...

In the absence of existing rules, why not read a variant i propose and let me know what you would add, or if you think it works at all?

Using Stress/derangement to model weariness as a resource:

Gurps horror has a cool stress mechanic that is supposed to simulate facing terrifying or otherworldy threats, but what if you adapted this to relate to other kinds of stress, such as not being in a warm bed, or travelling through dangerous woodland? Stress would work similiarily to the RAW, but instead of derangement there would be 'Misery' and if you got too much of this you would gain a depression based disadvantage, or lose Will, for instance. Perhaps it could be bought off with time, maybe using training rules to buy off points by doing tasks that weren't dangerous and were comfortable (in down time probably).

What do you think? Do you guys have a better way to do this, perhaps?

Oliver.
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Last edited by cupbearer; 04-22-2017 at 09:09 PM.
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Old 04-23-2017, 05:58 AM   #2
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Default Re: Weariness as a narrative resource

What about the long-term fatigue rules? Campaigns lists particular categories, like starvation and lost sleep, but it seems you could also apply that to extended exposure to wearying environments. As with the other forms of LT fatigue, these losses would only be recoverable by resting in a hospitable place, (like the Last Homely House or Lorien).

This would give the resource more of a physical cast, whereas your original proposal seems interested in the mental aspects.
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Old 04-23-2017, 12:44 PM   #3
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Default Re: Weariness as a narrative resource

I would have in fact suggested adapting the Stress/Derangement rules. I might not go so far as to implement Misery, but rather just adapt it so that there isn't an analog of Derangement and the characters only suffer Stress. But Misery is a cool idea too.

Anaraxes is also right that the long-term fatigue rules may be applicable to the physical stress, while the Stress/Misery idea would be applicable to the mental stress. I don't see why you couldn't use both! Some activities would certainly restore some of both.
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Old 04-23-2017, 03:52 PM   #4
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Default Re: Weariness as a narrative resource

You could apply a percentage of the long term fatigue suffered as a penalty to Will or IQ. I'd also suggest being agressive with the penalties for things like poor sleep from being in a leaky tent in the rain or poor nutrition because the food you're carrying or foraging for isnít a ballanced diet.
You might also penalize rolls for natural or physician assisted healing while on the trail. It's harder to keep wounds clean when camping as opposed to staying in a permanent structure.
There is also a social dynamic to consider. People are likely to be more suspicious of strangers camping at the edge of town than of travelers who stay at the local inn. The former are likely to be regarded as homeless bums, unless they are part of an army (which can lead to a whole different set of issues). The latter will be regarded as more legitimate travelers passing through.
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Old 04-23-2017, 04:24 PM   #5
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Default Re: Weariness as a narrative resource

A Will roll might be appropriate if the player want the character to stay in uncomfortable conditions despite there being an affordable alternative. Otherwise it would probably not be a good idea to assign penalties for mental weariness unless the character has an applicable disadvantage or the conditions truly are very bad. Plenty of people have after all spent their entire lives under conditions which by modern standards are rather bad.

If the conditions are bad enough to warrant such penalties (how bad the conditions have to be should probably vary between characters, for example someone with Temperature Tolerance or high HT might suffer much less from cold weather), I would suggest something like this.

Each day they have to make Will roll. If they fail, they get a -2 penalty to IQ (including Will and Per) due to the distraction of their weariness. For at most one hour per day, a character can halve this penalty if they first pass a Will roll, this represents the ability to focus past some of the weariness during important situations.

The penalty persists until they have the opportunity to rest under significantly better conditions or until they pass their daily Will roll with a margin of success greater than the largest margin of failure during the same penalty period.

Last edited by Andreas; 04-23-2017 at 04:28 PM.
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Old 04-23-2017, 05:23 PM   #6
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Default Re: Weariness as a narrative resource

Quote:
Originally Posted by cupbearer View Post
In the absence of existing rules, why not read a variant i propose and let me know what you would add, or if you think it works at all?
Do you know about the article "The Last Gasp" from Pyramid #44? It discusses Long Term vs. Short Term Fatigue, it discusses weariness...it seems to be just want you are looking for.
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Old 04-25-2017, 06:52 PM   #7
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Default Re: Weariness as a narrative resource

Quote:
Originally Posted by trooper6 View Post
Do you know about the article "The Last Gasp" from Pyramid #44? It discusses Long Term vs. Short Term Fatigue, it discusses weariness...it seems to be just want you are looking for.
Yes I do, its very neat, but pretty different than what I am proposing.
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Old 04-25-2017, 06:53 PM   #8
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Default Re: Weariness as a narrative resource

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Originally Posted by Anaraxes View Post
What about the long-term fatigue rules? Campaigns lists particular categories, like starvation and lost sleep, but it seems you could also apply that to extended exposure to wearying environments. As with the other forms of LT fatigue, these losses would only be recoverable by resting in a hospitable place, (like the Last Homely House or Lorien).

This would give the resource more of a physical cast, whereas your original proposal seems interested in the mental aspects.
not a bad idea, that kind of works, and is simpler, I'm not sure I want to go with physical impairment but it possibly work so I have to think it through.
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Old 04-25-2017, 06:54 PM   #9
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Default Re: Weariness as a narrative resource

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Originally Posted by mikeejimbo View Post
I would have in fact suggested adapting the Stress/Derangement rules. I might not go so far as to implement Misery, but rather just adapt it so that there isn't an analog of Derangement and the characters only suffer Stress. But Misery is a cool idea too.

Anaraxes is also right that the long-term fatigue rules may be applicable to the physical stress, while the Stress/Misery idea would be applicable to the mental stress. I don't see why you couldn't use both! Some activities would certainly restore some of both.
The problem with only using stress is that RAW stress can be removed by resting for ten minutes, so that's why I suggested having misery as well.
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Old 04-25-2017, 07:06 PM   #10
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Default Re: Weariness as a narrative resource

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Originally Posted by cupbearer View Post
not a bad idea, that kind of works, and is simpler, I'm not sure I want to go with physical impairment but it possibly work so I have to think it through.
Note that lost FP give a penalty to extra effort by the standard rules, you could extend that and have the lost FP also affect things like will rolls to keep adventuring, thus when they have lost enough long term FP their will to continue is also sapped.
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