Sunday, November 1, 2009

[GURPS] Hydration in Real World and Games.

We sometimes take the rules for granted when reality stares us in the face. Anyone who's played a sport is reminded how important it is to be properly hydrated. I've seen people pass out in the middle of an Airsoft game because of failing to meet this simple measure. I've almost passed out as well because I was too cheap to buy a Hydration Pack.

I've started keeping Rations, Water Skins and Ceramic Water Bottles on Characters. I can be a little bit critical about this, because In real life, this is a safety issue. If you fall over from fatigue, you can get yourself seriously hurt. This is also an accident that happens often with newbies and people who are not conscious of their limits. Characters with out it might die as a result to crippling exhaustion when attempting to escape. (which has happened to me in an airsoft game).

If you look at the Fatigue Rules. Only the initial 10 sec will you suffer encumbrance penalty to fatigue, the rest is 1cp each minute. If you compare Paced Running to Combat, you will notice an inconsistency in the rules.

Paced Running, eats up more energy than melee. Strangely, Sprinting eats up more energy than Combat. Instead of making a Rule that fits quite the middle, the rule disregards the two precedents of "work" (work defined by force/time).

Personally, I just ignore the rules and use the Paced Running, and Sprinting Rules as measures of Effort and Exhaustion. That is HT rolls at either 15 sec or 1 min increments.

If its modern combat filled with maneuvers effort is expended at the level of Paced Running (Roll HT per min) until contact, where it is shifts to Sprinting (Roll HT per 15 sec), which is not so hard since I've resolve thing sin 5-6 second increments. In melee, its sprinting in a turn preceding contact (from my experience with Larps and Soccer). Note that Paced running, is characterized as the character moving (working) at half their full move. That already means that character who move at around their full move all the time are exerting effort at Sprinting Level.

Such a set up makes PCs with near average HT run out of options VERY quickly. This reflects my real world experience in airsoft and sports. When someone learns a sport they learn to pace themselves, which can be reflected to the skill affect the HT rolls. Soldier+HT, can reflect battle field discipline when it comes to pacing, while maneuvering.

In the basic set, you can recover 1FP from eating and drinking. Using some rules of thumb for sports hydration, you can allow a character to recover 1FP per hour if he has access to at least 1L/Quart of water. That might be small, but if you can remember experience in exhausting sport, the pain of thirst is something of a factor to morale and Role-Playing. Even you hi-HT dwarf will build up a mighty thirst, and even the surly veteran will be shaking from urgency to get a drink.

Having a 14-15 HT might look overkill, but that's the level of Special Forces operate on. If you take a weekend athlete (HT11-12) and put him with maneuvers special forces people or season roman veterans he will be exhausted before the first 2 hours trying to catch up.

From this discussion

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