Monday, October 29, 2012

Travel and Exploration

Henry Morton Stanley and Kalulu
were quite adept at jungle exploration
Below the break is our first stab at a one page system for hex exploration. One of the major ideas behind it is that travel is based on TIME and not DISTANCE. In my head, and in the brief play tests I've done, it seems to work, and hopefully greater exposure will shine light on any holes in this manner of thinking.

The quick version is:

  1. When you enter a hex for the first time, you find a point of interest
  2. Every hex has 3 points of interest
  3. If you want to find the other two points in that hex you have to explore
  4. Exploration costs a single WATCH (Thanks Alexandrian). We've kept it a bit more abstract by using fixed units of time (4 hours) and basically throwing out distance.
  5. If the party decides to travel to a brand new hex, it costs a single WATCH and they have a chance to get LOST and VEER away from their intended direction.
  6. In order to reward exploration, and allow time constraints to pressurize play without becoming boring, the party can move between KNOWN points of interest without becoming lost.
I'd love to hear some feedback in the comments, but since we're still squarely in the esoterically obscure category of blogs, you'll probably start seeing this crop up here and there as we gussy this idea up and prance it around so mean old grognards can shoot it full of holes.


Travel and Exploration
1.    Players arrive in an UNEXPLORED HEX
2.    Players DISCOVER the DEFAULT POINT OF INTEREST associated with that hex
a.     The default is listed first under each hex and marked with arrows (e.g., >>>DEFAULT<<<)
3.    Game Master should then READ aloud THE CHANT for the Point of Interest
4.    Game Master should then trigger an ENCOUNTER:
a.     RANDOM
c.     NONE
5.    Once the encounter has been resolved the players are free to:
a.     INVESTIGATE the Point of Interest further
b.    EXPLORE the hex they are currently in
c.     TRAVEL to a neighboring UNEXPLORED HEX
d.    TRAVEL to a KNOWN neighboring POINT OF INTEREST

The investigation of Points of Interest should be handled and resolved using the regular play mechanics of the game system being used. Information contained within THE DARK under each Point of Interest may assist with this process.

1.    Exploring a hex costs a single WATCH
2.    At the end of the WATCH players have an ENCOUNTER:
a.     RANDOM
e.    OTHER

1.    The WATCH is the standard unit of currency for travel and exploration
2.    One WATCH is FOUR HOURS long
3.    One DAY is SIX WATCHES

1.    Travel from one hex to a neighboring hex costs a single WATCH
2.    Players choose direction of travel and set out
3.    Do they become LOST?
a.     Becoming lost should be determined by the rule system currently being used to conduct the game and should always result in:
                                          i.    YES they are LOST
                                         ii.    NO they are NOT LOST
b.    If the party is NOT LOST they arrive at their intended hex and ENCOUNTER its DEFAULT POINT OF INTEREST
c.     If the party is LOST they VEER
                                          i.    VEERING
1.    The Game Master ROLLS 1D6 to determine where the party arrives at the end of the WATCH spent traveling
a.     1 - Party arrives at their POINT OF DEPARTURE
b.    2-3 - Party VEERS LEFT
c.     4-5 - Party VEERS RIGHT
d.    6 - Party arrives at their INTENDED DESTINATION

1.    Parties will NOT become LOST if they are traveling between KNOWN POINTS OF INTEREST
2.    Travel between neighboring POINTS OF INTEREST costs a single WATCH
3.    Points of interest are considered to be KNOWN if any member of the party has DISCOVERED them (this includes NPC Guides, Prisoners, Reliable Maps etc)
4.    At the end of the WATCH the Game Master can read THE CHANT associated with the Point of Interest and/or trigger an ENCOUNTER


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