Weight, Carrying Capacity and Equipment

I noted a while back that I believe the encumbrance and carrying capacity numbers seem out of whack. An average Str 10 character can carry 100 lbs. unencumbered (the equivalent of TWO full modern military kits) and push 500 lbs with relative ease. Sure, x10 and x50 make for nice round math, but it's totally unrealistic even for fantasy. I'd like to see those capacities halved to x5 and x25.

The problem is that the equipment list is also way over weighted, so it seems the "fix" to bad weights in the equipment list was to have characters be able to carry ridiculous amounts of weight.

I took a stab (pun unintended) at fixing some of the weights in the weapons tables using some simple Google research. Not everything has been revised, but you can see the trend that most of the D&D Next weights are over by as much a 2 times! This is only the weapons list. The rest of the equipment list is nearly as bad, if not worse. This could all be fixed with just a few hours of basic research. Obviously, weapon style have varied over time and across cultures, so many of the revised weights are ranges. However, it would be relatively simple to choose an arbitrary average weight for everything below.
 







































































































































































































































Name



 Weight 



 Revised Weight 



Simple Weapons 






Cestus1 lb.

Light Club



3 lb.



2



Light Crossbow,



6 lb.





Dagger



1 lb.





Dart



1/2 lb.





Greatclub



15 lb.





Javelin



4 lb.



1.5 - 2



Mace



8 lb.



2.5 - 4



Quarterstaff



4 lb.



2



Shortbow



2 lb.



1



Sling



1/2 lb.





Spear



5 lb.



2 - 4



Unarmed strike













Martial Weapons 







Bastard sword



10 lb.



5



Battleaxe



10 lb.



6



Crossbow, hand



3 lb.





Crossbow, heavy



10 lb.





Double axe



2 lb.





Double sword



2 lb.





Flail



2 lb.



3 - 4



Glaive



15 lb.



7 - 9



Greataxe



15 lb.





Greatsword



10 lb.



5 - 8



Halberd



15 lb.



4 - 7



Handaxe



7 lb.



3



Katana



3 lb.



2.5



Lance



10 lb.



4 - 5



Light hammer



7 lb.



5



Longbow



3 lb.



1.5



Longspear



5 lb.



2 - 4 



Long sword



5 lb.



2.5 - 3.5



Maul



25 lb.



15



Morningstar



12 lb.



4 - 6



Rapier



2 lb.



2



Scimitar



4 lb.



2.5



Short sword



3 lb.



2 - 2.5



Spiked chain



5 lb.





Trident



6 lb.



4



Urgrosh



2 lb.





War pick



6 lb.



3



Warhammer



8 lb.



2.5 - 3



___________________________________________________________________

Check out the Owlbear blog! http://ragingowlbear.blogspot.com/

More realism in encumbrance is welcome, although I think a lot of DMs tend to throw the system out of the window. I like encumbrance rules, although the current rules need to be looked at, IMO. Being encumbered provides disadvantage to all attacks, saves, and checks. That's a pretty severe penalty. If they changed it to attacks and STR/DEX/CON saves and checks, I think I'd be ok. I know if I went to the gym and picked up two 60lb dumbells (assuming I'm of average strength), I wouldn't have any particular problems with noticing someone coming in the door, hearing people talking, recalling obscure D&D rules, or other things covered by "mental" stat checks.

Under the rules, holding two 60lb dumbells would cause me to fail things more often than, say, being burned alive by acid.
Why do you think carrying 100 lbs is unrealistic?  Remember, 10 str is average for the medieval fantasy world of D&D, but compared to modern society where life is generally sedentary 10 strength is far above the norm.

When everyone has to do physical labor just make enough food to stay alive, the average strength is higher.
I'd rather have a simple and easy to use unrealistic system over a complicated and hard to use realistic system.
If the weight of equiptment really is generally too high, then with it adjusted and the values swithed to x5 and x25, it wouldn't really be harder to math, and might make more sense.
If the weight of equiptment really is generally too high, then with it adjusted and the values swithed to x5 and x25, it wouldn't really be harder to math, and might make more sense.

So I have to alter the charts and alter the multiplier... Somehow that doesn't sound easier than using the chart as is.

As far as  " the weight of equiptment really is generally too high", well who said that? I don't know what the conversion is for real life to d&d, do you? Somehow in a world where people snap their fingers and fire comes out, I can imagine weapons being heavier and stronger people than here. Why does realistic have to mean just like the real world? Does anyone really look at the weights after they are on the sheets? As long as the characters can't carry too much, does it really matter is a longsword is 5 or 10 lbs? Not to me.

So I have to alter the charts and alter the multiplier... Somehow that doesn't sound easier than using the chart as is.



I was saying if that if they came adjusted to more realistic weights, with the rule of 5x Strength Score as the Carrying Capacity and so on, as canon.

I'm not saying they should do that, just that it wouldn't be more complicated, and might be more immersive for a lot of people with experience with weapons and so on.

I'm totally fine with the current system and like the fantasy feel of it.
So I have to alter the charts and alter the multiplier... Somehow that doesn't sound easier than using the chart as is.



I was saying if that if they came adjusted to more realistic weights, with the rule of 5x Strength Score as the Carrying Capacity and so on, as canon.

I'm not saying they should do that, just that it wouldn't be more complicated, and might be more immersive for a lot of people with experience with weapons and so on.

I'm totally fine with the current system and like the fantasy feel of it.

Oh, I see. Well then I'd just say that I agree with you and it's fine as/is. No need to reinvent the wheel when it works just fine IMO. Realism in a fantasy game not something I've overly worried about.
Why do you think carrying 100 lbs is unrealistic?  Remember, 10 str is average for the medieval fantasy world of D&D, but compared to modern society where life is generally sedentary 10 strength is far above the norm.

When everyone has to do physical labor just make enough food to stay alive, the average strength is higher.



Bull-- ...oney.

I'm talking about a fully healthy and fit U.S. Army infantryman, who carries a pack between 50 and 80 lbs, sometimes more (which is, by all accounts, extraordinarily heavy). This is not "Joe Sedentary".  This is someone in their near-peak physical condition out of basic training.

So, you seem to state that the average midieval farm worker, whose nutritional intake is not nearly as complete as a modern day solidier, could carry a full kit as easily?  

I repeat. Baloney (or Bologne, if you prefer). Your reasoning that a D&D peasent is somehow as strong as or stronger than a fully fit serviceman is highly flawed.
 

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Check out the Owlbear blog! http://ragingowlbear.blogspot.com/



So I have to alter the charts and alter the multiplier... Somehow that doesn't sound easier than using the chart as is.




Don't be daft. You don't have to do anything if you're not one of the game designers. I'm saying they should be FIXED IN THE OFFICIAL RULES... not house ruled.

If WotC fixed the weights, the math gets easier not harder. Instead of trying to add up 150 pounds of equipment for Str 15, I'm only adding to 75. 1s, 2s and 3s are easier to add up in a large series than 5s, 6s, and 7s... 

I'm amazed that so many people are basically saying "Yeah, the weights are all f--d up, but we don't care because it's fantasy!"  Seriously, people? You want to keep living with craptacular rules because it's fantasy? Does it really not bother anyone that majority of weights in the game are 100% off?
 
I'm not talking about a pound or two... I'm talking a DOUBLE and TRIPLE the actual weights of items in reality, especially given that the actual numbers are out there on the internet and would take an intern no more than a day (two at most) to correct on the equipment tables.

___________________________________________________________________

Check out the Owlbear blog! http://ragingowlbear.blogspot.com/

As a rule, most weapons are about 2 to 4 pounds (about 1 or 2 kilos). It is such a truism, it seems pointless to actually track weapon weight in detail. Just estimate all weapons as if about 3 pounds each. Done.

As far as the game goes, it almost never matters, if the weight is 2 pounds or 3 pounds.

There seems no reason to track the weight.
As a rule, most weapons are about 2 to 4 pounds (about 1 or 2 kilos). It is such a truism, it seems pointless to actually track weapon weight in detail. Just estimate all weapons as if about 3 pounds each. Done.

As far as the game goes, it almost never matters, if the weight is 2 pounds or 3 pounds.

There seems no reason to track the weight.



Maybe “heavy weapons” weigh about 6 to 7 pounds (about 3 kilos). But that is pretty much the upper limit. With possible rare exceptions, any historical weapon heavier than this was “ceremonial”, looking cool when waving it in a parade, but unusable in battle. Heavy weapons include the German twohander great sword (bihänder, zweihänder), the Japanese great mace (kanabo, tetsubo), and so on.


In sum:

Weapon: about 3 pounds (±1)
Heavy weapon: about 6 pounds (±1).

But there is no need to really care how much it weighs. Probably delete item weight from the weapon table to make the game feel cleaner and simpler.
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