House Ruling Healing

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The most alarming thing I noticed in the Keep on the Shadofell quick start rules was healing. The 6 hour rest to full hit points is just plain silly and goes against all three previous editions of D&D...in a bad way. I don't think I like my games particularly gritty, it's just ridiculous that after a day of brutal combat a PC and get six hours of sleep and be fully healed...

So, how are people going to house rule healing?

My plan is to make it more like Iron Heroes, where you have a sort of "healing pool" Perhaps only allow the regaining a number of healing surges equal to your level, or 3 + your level...Basically the idea would be that after a lot days of combat, you start to wear down, and you'll need more than just 6 hours (which by the way is under the recommended amount of sleep for adults...)
The most alarming thing I noticed in the Keep on the Shadofell quick start rules was healing. The 6 hour rest to full hit points is just plain silly and goes against all three previous editions of D&D...in a bad way. I don't think I like my games particularly gritty, it's just ridiculous that after a day of brutal combat a PC and get six hours of sleep and be fully healed...

So, how are people going to house rule healing?

My plan is to make it more like Iron Heroes, where you have a sort of "healing pool" Perhaps only allow the regaining a number of healing surges equal to your level, or 3 + your level...Basically the idea would be that after a lot days of combat, you start to wear down, and you'll need more than just 6 hours (which by the way is under the recommended amount of sleep for adults...)

well they can not have that same system of 1hp per character level if you have a full night's rest. At level one you can have some classes with 30+ hp. In one of the playtest games there was a character with a 33hp, if i recall correctly, so the party would have to send a month of doing nothing just so this fighter could regain hp. So when you have a lot more hp than what you did with 1st/2nd/3.x that system wont cut it.
6 hours of rest vs. the cleric burning the remainder of their spells and then breaking out the wands of curing and/or vigor. It wasn't difficult to get to full hps at the end of the day in 3.5, why make it harder in 4ed.

Edit:

Forgot my "hasn't this been covered in a few hundred threads already" comment. But I suppose since the C&C board is shut down, it might get missed.
well they can not have that same system of 1hp per character level if you have a full night's rest. At level one you can have some classes with 30+ hp. In one of the playtest games there was a character with a 33hp, if i recall correctly, so the party would have to send a month of doing nothing just so this fighter could regain hp. So when you have a lot more hp than what you did with 1st/2nd/3.x that system wont cut it.

Why not? If someone with 30+ HP is knocked down to the single digits, it SHOULD take a month to heal. That's down to a quarter vitality.
Why not? If someone with 30+ HP is knocked down to the single digits, it SHOULD take a month to heal. That's down to a quarter vitality.

This may be true if HPs represented ONLY physical health; that all HP damage was a reflection on actual wounds taken, blood loss, etc.

Personally, I don't find it very fun to think about having to have my character take a month off in between fights in order to heal naturally.
This may be true if HPs represented ONLY physical health; that all HP damage was a reflection on actual wounds taken, blood loss, etc.

Personally, I don't find it very fun to think about having to have my character take a month off in between fights in order to heal naturally.

And I (as well as presumably the OP) do not find it very enjoyable to have HP healed completely in six hours. Who's right here? Nobody is right or wrong. It's all subjective to the kind of game you or your group want to play.
So, how are people going to house rule healing?

I'm going to have HP recover fully after each encounter. It eliminates the arguments over how many hours one should realistically have to wait to regenerate plot armor.
Who's right here?

The people who don't have to use patently ridiculous claims that are directly contradicted by the rules to justify their opinion.
The people who don't have to use patently ridiculous claims that are directly contradicted by the rules to justify their opinion.

You mean the rules that tell me that I have a right to tweak them into a game that better matches what I want to play?
Considering that most character's get back about a quarter of their total hp's with each healing surge, and that most have more than enough surges per day to regain a full set of xp, it's not unreasonable to assume that with a full rest they'd be reset to full hp.

Initially, I could sympathize with the "we don't like complete recovery of HP" people. But after thinking about how the game system is designed as a whole, I decided it was just plain stupid to house rule this.

What, if anything, is the reason for not allowing HP regen? It's merely a means for punishing characters for not playing at their tactical best- taking every precaution not to lose hp?

The reason I sympathized at first is I can remember playing in 1e with a DM who, if the party was hurt and decided to take long periods to rest - would have any monsters we fought but failed to defeat just take their treasure and run during the time we were in town healing. Thus we were faced with the choice of whether to soldier on at reduced capacity and risk dying, vs. allowing the booty (and in those days treasure was xp too) to slip away.

But let's look at the 4e game mechanic. Assume you don't allow healing during sleep. So you wake up. You spend your renewed healing surges. You go to full hp. So now you're fully healed and the only penalty is you have to choose whether to adventure with a reduced number of surges for the day. That would be the only consequence of your choice. If that floats your boat, go for it. But all it seems to do is introduce unnecessary complications.

The only system that i've seen so far that sort of makes sense is one where, should the characters be knocked below 0 hp, reduces the negative hit point cushion characters have to avoid dying unless they take some long time recovering it. This allows daily fights/encounters to be played by the rule with the risk that if you've been beaten on enough times, rather than being able to drop to your bloodied total in negative hp, you risk possibly being killed the moment you drop below 0.

This represents the glass cannon effect - where sure you can push yourself to fight normally but your body has used up all its reserves - your'e bandaged to the wazzoo - and one wrong hit and you'll be jetting blood from an artery like a bad Monte Python scene.

But then you have to figure out a set of rules for the recovery of that negative hp cushion.
You mean the rules that tell me that I have a right to tweak them into a game that better matches what I want to play?

I think the issue here is that the OP's word choice and tone imply that it is obvious that healing is ridiculous and that it can't possibly be the right way to do it, then asks who will houserule healing. That implies that anyone who goes with the default system is wrong, oblivious to the problems, etc., so it puts those who like the default rules on the defensive.

If the OP had read like this:

The most alarming thing for me in the Keep on the Shadofell quick start rules was healing. I think the 6 hour rest to full hit points is just plain silly; it's different from previous editions of D&D...and, I believe, in a bad way. I don't think I like my games particularly gritty, and would prefer that after a day of brutal combat a PC has to do more than get six hours of sleep to be fully healed...

So, does anyone else feel this way, and if so, how might you house rule healing?

this wouldn't have devolved into name-calling. Like you said, it's all subjective.

Can we agree that some like the default system, some don't, and answer the OP rather than getting into "That's stupid!" "No it's not!" "My way's better!" "No it's not!" again?
I don't particularly see a need to house rule. Players enjoy dungeon delving more then waiting around a town for weeks waiting to get back into the good parts. Why delay the fun?
I don't particularly see a need to house rule. Players enjoy dungeon delving more then waiting around a town for weeks waiting to get back into the good parts. Why delay the fun?

It's not as if the DM makes the players wait weeks. The characters wait, the DM says, "The weeks go by whilst you heal and news from the borderlands continues to drive home the stark consequences of your failure to defeat the High Shaman of the Black Dragon Tribe." My sig contains a link to my healing house rule which will provide players with an incentive to retreat to recuperate if things are going too badly for them. Instead of merely retreating for six hours to sleep and try again.

The six hours sleep thing reminds me too much of raid wipes in most mmo's. You try some encounter and fail, and then have to spend X amount of time recovering from it to try again. In an RPG, a campaign setting where success or failure can alter world events, a "reset" button in as few as six hours is ridiculous and speaks loudly about where the writers and designers have drawn their inspiration from and who their target audience is with 4th edition.
It's not as if the DM makes the players wait weeks. The characters wait, the DM says, "The weeks go by whilst you heal and news from the borderlands continues to drive home the stark consequences of your failure to defeat the High Shaman of the Black Dragon Tribe." My sig contains a link to my healing house rule which will provide players with an incentive to retreat to recuperate if things are going too badly for them. Instead of merely retreating for six hours to sleep and try again.

I fail to see the difference.

a) The party retreats to a safe spot and rest 6 hours (10 second game time), the villain succeeds and the party has failed.

b) The party retreats to town and rests (10 second game time), the villain succeeds and the party has failed.

Since time lapsing is not an issue in either case, its more or less meaningless for the purpose of success or failure.

The six hours sleep thing reminds me too much of raid wipes in most mmo's. You try some encounter and fail, and then have to spend X amount of time recovering from it to try again. In an RPG, a campaign setting where success or failure can alter world events, a "reset" button in as few as six hours is ridiculous and speaks loudly about where the writers and designers have drawn their inspiration from and who their target audience is with 4th edition.

Why can't a villain succeed in his plans in the six or so hours? Unlike an MMO, a DM can limit the amount of attempts before it no longer becomes possible to succeeds. So instead of needing weeks to achieve his plans, he may now only need a few hours. It certainly puts the pressure on the PC more to know that the clock is ticking for them to get there as opposed to days or months.
Healing up to full combat capability in six hours is just implausible is why. The six hours doesn't take into account how the pc's ended up in their sorry state at all. The pc's could have been taking lava baths before resting and they'd still wake up six hours later ready to go. I'm still tweaking the system I've come up with as I go over various scenarios, but it's good enough right now to work the way I want it to. The way I need it to affect player decisions.
My house rules regarding heeling and HP in general (based on what works for my play group)

HP is primarily your ability to withstand damage, with experience luck and will to survive only being a very minor element in it. Heeling surges are cut to an eighth of full HP as opposed to a quarter, but the number of surges available gets raised by half. Only one healing surge is allowed per character per encounter (save for magical healing). Rest functions in the following manor:

It takes 3 hours rest to spend 1 surge
6 hours to spend 2
9 hours to spend 3 and reset surges available to full.
More than 9 hours rest has no further benefits.

This assumes that you still have the appropriate number of surges available.

I also have considered rules for grogginess if a character is woken in the middle of one of those 3 hour periods, but thought better of it.
[thread]997681[/thread] might interest you about the 6 hours of rest.
I agree (a) that if the full rules really mean "whatever level you are, however much damage you took, without magic you are fully healed the next day", and if in the interest of simplicity there aren't ways characters can fairly easily suffer something 'more lasting', then "suspension of disbelief" takes a hard knock. Even if this is only for "heroes" and the regular person who takess a wound and has no magic used on them is hurt for days or longer, it still creates too much an exceptionalism around heroes. I like rules that give some chance of emulating fiction rather than video game.

I also agree (b) that it may be hard to houserule this without seriously affecting game balance for the system as designed. Given the availability of magic and surges, I'm not sure how much houseruling is really needed, as the issue is really "what's the baseline assumption not just for heroes".

It will be interesting to see if monsters benefit from the same dynamic (if the dragon gets away today, it's fully healed tomorrow).

A believable explanation for why it's this way for the heroes and others like them would be nice. Even if it's just there's a really simple ritual clerics and paladins can use to facilitate overnight healing.
I would say go the route of Neverwinter Nights. Give the players a magic stone that can use to teleport back to safety when they are down to their last two hit points, get fully healed, and then pay someone to teleport them back to the awaiting monsters. Who, by the way, have decided to just stand around and not do anything until you've returned, fully healed, to deal them a swift death.:D HA! Nothing but win all over that scenario, if I do say so myself.
Healing up to full combat capability in six hours is just implausible is why. The six hours doesn't take into account how the pc's ended up in their sorry state at all. The pc's could have been taking lava baths before resting and they'd still wake up six hours later ready to go. I'm still tweaking the system I've come up with as I go over various scenarios, but it's good enough right now to work the way I want it to. The way I need it to affect player decisions.

I was under the impression that lava was instant death in 4e. In fairness, if you are after modeling realism then yes, six hours of rest doesn't seem plausible, depending on how you interpret the HP system. However then the issue arises that if the party has a cleric healing becomes moot anyway outside of combat. All they have to do is find a safe spot and keep casting healing spells, unless you intend to restrict how healing works of course.
I was under the impression that lava was instant death in 4e. In fairness, if you are after modeling realism then yes, six hours of rest doesn't seem plausible, depending on how you interpret the HP system. However then the issue arises that if the party has a cleric healing becomes moot anyway outside of combat. All they have to do is find a safe spot and keep casting healing spells, unless you intend to restrict how healing works of course.

Not realism, plausibility. It's slightly different imo. I'm not interested in modeling down to the location of a wound type of realism. Just an abstracted method that enables more interesting roleplaying and puts some tough choices before the players.
First off, though I have no problem allowing fast healing, I do have a couple of ideas on adding lasting damage.
And I do love tinkering with game mechanics.

Wounds
Whenever a player takes damage equal to one of their Healing Surges, they acquire a Wound. Each Wound adds a cumulative -1 penalty to attacks, skill checks, and saving throws.
Wounds may be healed with magic, or with rest. After at least 8 hours of rest, the character rolls 1d20 + Con bonus against a DC of 10+ 1 per Wound. (Numbers might need adjusted.)
For healers, I would allow a skill check against a similar DC, if they are attending the injured character. Magical Healing should heal up most wounds, as well.

The potential problems I see with this:
1) Wounds might be acquired very quickly, and take a while to wear off. This would make characters pretty unusable until they had lots of rest.
2) Wounds accumulating during combat might make an encounter that was hard at its outset, impossible after a few lucky monster attack rolls. I would consider only applying wounds after a given encounter was complete, IE: as the adrenaline and rush of battle wears off, the characters begin to notice their injuries.


Healing Surge Gain
Another option is to limit healing by rest or remove it entirely, and control how often Healing Surges are gained. If a character gains 1 healing surge per day, then it means a full heal from dead to full takes four days. With this set up, I would probably include potions of healing which add healing surges, allow Heal skill checks to restore a surge (if they meet a DC), or other means of fast healing which require resources or magic.

[Edited for grammar/ word choice]
I think maybe people should wait for the complete rules to come out and play it a few times before houseruling something as important to game balance as healing. From what I've heard about examples of new encounter setups from KotS, you're likely to die if you don't enter a combat with full hp.

As for "realism", D&D is and has never been good at modelling the real world. The real world is frecking deadly, it's rediculously easy for people to die. You don't need an axe to the head or knife to the heart to kill you. A cut on the arm or leg that pierced a major artery will bleed you out in a few minutes. Or how about infected wounds? Does anyone want D&D to model infections and gangrene in a world without antibiotics. Striving for "realism" while using D&D's abstract hp model is as misguided as trying to inject real world housing market economy into Monopoly.
As I see it the real problem is not that people care how many hit points people have, its that they dislike the idea that you can be very injured and then reset to perfect health by "just" sleeping.

The 4e rule works on the premise that players could expend powers like healing surges to get the same effect. Therefore, they just made it easy. You rest, you reset. This means that dms that used encounter tables and random roll dungeons (which are JUST as much a core concept of dnd as any other style of play) could feel like their was not such a stupid time differential. The party fights, and then spends a week held up in a room resting and nothing has changed in the dungeon.

Now if your gamemaster never ever even once allowed the sort of healing times the dnd game used to have just slip by so you could have full hp then you are really in a unique situation with a unique game master.

However, I can understand that for some people being able to go from very low hp (in their minds representing grevious injury) to full hp (in their minds representing perfect health) is just to hard to swallow.

The problem is that full hp and low hp have no non numeric meaning. Otherwise their should be penalties associated with being at various percentages of your hp. If being below 1/4 of your hp meant you were on your last legs then you shouldn't be able to jump and you should be practically unable to fight.

Similarly, full hp doesn't mean your "fine" consider that you can be at full hp and be poisoned, diseased, and numerous other conditions.

What I might suggest is that you create a new condition, just like blinded or any of the games other conditions.

It would be something like:

"Wounded"
A player who takes a critical hit while bloodied must pass a saving throw on their turn or become wounded.
A wounded character grants combat advantage to a non wounded character
A wounded character loses 2 movement
A wounded character takes a -2 penalty to all skill rolls involving all physical stats
A wounded character can have his condition negated for 1 encounter by having a character with healing complete a healing check (DC 20)
Wounding lasts until you have had a chance to rest in such a way your gamemaster sees fit to think you could have healed a wound of the nature you took.
A wounded character who recieves healing from a divine, arcane, or primal source may make a saving through to attempt to end his condition.

Now you have unattached the idea of being really injured from hp. A character who goes to 0 hp has taken an injury that is immediatly life threatening.

A character who gets wounded has taken a serve or scaring wound (may have broken a bone or two) this effect does not end simply by returning hp. Thus you could be "as good as your going to get (i.e. full hp) but not in tip top shape.
I doubt it says anywhere in the rules that the six hours rest has to represent six hours of sleeping.

Why does the Cleric have limited CLW/Healing Word/etc in D&D? Why have Wizards, researchers of all things arcane, been unable to create a Healing spell? Essentially, the only reasons are to maintain challenge and game balance. In the realms of fiction, characters with a healing touch don't tend to be restricted to using it no more than X time per day. Sure, we can attribute some fluff to there being limits to the amount of divine energy the Cleric can focus, but its really little more than a acknowledgement of the fact that we're playing a game and not having the restriction equates to the players running around with the God Mode cheats enabled.

So, that six hours downtime? Maybe the Cleric or Paladin says a prayer that focuses the divine energy over the course of the next few hours. If you don't have a Divine party member, maybe the Wizard knows an enchantment to cast on a bed roll that speeds the bodies metabolism during sleep and knits wounds that much quicker. (Maybe a varient is cast on the parties clothing, explaining the use of Healing Surges in some cases?) Maybe the Ranger knows enough of herbs, moulds, and poultices that those nasty gashes won't even be troubling you in the morning? If you really wanted to, have this as a Heal Skill Challenge (though allow some Perception (to find herbs), Nature (to identify herbs), and maybe History (knowing medicines used in past battles) checks to help get all the party involved). I would suggest that a failure means that the party still gets all their HP back for the next day, but perhaps lose a Healing Surge: balanced encounters will assume full party HP, but only will need to account for a small number of Surges, so the encounters will still be balanced, the party just can't push on quite as far tomorrow.
I love that there seem to be sooo much HP, I allways wanted to say

- you make a long run, 1d6 damage for exaustion

-this stressfull situation for your characters, you are happily chatting about over the pizza does hapen to take some of them - 2D10 stress damage

that would make theplayers pay more atention to the "pain" involved in some of the decisions and whats happening

"luke, I am your father" seemed to hurt more than the hand loss...
seeing your love hunging from a tree or just beeing stabed should send you to the ground forsaken, you could be ready for battle (insert free interpretative healing surge born of rage and frustration here) or just be in shock and not able to take more (insert no more vitality, too much togheter, first my frinds batrays me, then kills my wife... cant bear it...)

that and use the wound sistem, it makes fighters think twice about just charging the ogres , when a real hit makes it to the flesh and you cant "rest" a severe trauma... like the loss of an arm... makes it more realistic and dificult
The "cleric has a ritual that accounts for this" is one option for fixing.

I agree that it's a misallocation of effort to spend much time designing any houserule before seeing the full ruleset. For all we know the DMG has an optional rule in it already etc. under some heading such as "Low magic/Gritty Campaign Options".

Using healing surges doesn't really fix it for me as there too I hope the full rules offer something less video-gamey than "healing surge is just that", that rather it represents some galvanization of will or energy explicable in roleplaying terms, "I remember how much I hate him", "The site of my friends injured fills me with rage", "I call upon holy Pelor to see me through this trial". etc., and out of encounters, "I bind my wounds and drink some bitters", "I gather my thoughts and calm myself, thinking how to avoid stressing my wounded knee in the coming fights".

Constant repitition of "I surge, X hp" just screams "pawn" not "character" to me if you're familiar with some terms, or more simply "video game" and not a very good one. How many lives does your pac-man have?
Healing up to full combat capability in six hours is just implausible is why. The six hours doesn't take into account how the pc's ended up in their sorry state at all. The pc's could have been taking lava baths before resting and they'd still wake up six hours later ready to go. I'm still tweaking the system I've come up with as I go over various scenarios, but it's good enough right now to work the way I want it to. The way I need it to affect player decisions.

Hey this is a fantasy game. You understand what fantasy means right? It does not have to make sense for the game mechanics. Did you have a problem with a level 20 character healing 20hp for an 8hour rest.
Hey this is a fantasy game. You understand what fantasy means right? It does not have to make sense for the game mechanics. Did you have a problem with a level 20 character healing 20hp for an 8hour rest.

You people keep trotting out that stupid "this is a fantasy game" crap like it means anything. So what if it's fantasy? Bruenor Battlehammer, king of the dwarves in Mithral Hall is part of this "fantasy" game and he was in a freakin' coma for half a book.

I guess in 4th edition he would have been "in an emo-induced coma" for maybe a page or two.
Hey this is a fantasy game. You understand what fantasy means right? It does not have to make sense for the game mechanics. Did you have a problem with a level 20 character healing 20hp for an 8hour rest.

Fantasy does NOT mean total rejection of realism. It means there are a few unrealistic elements (the existence of magic, and monsters being the most ubiquitous conceits to accept) but the rest of the world is basically realistic.
Even in fantasy, the "fantastic" stuff usally has unseen rules they play by.
I would like to suggest that anyone who likes the idea of the current health system should leave the thread to those who wish it to be changed. Personally, I almost didn't come on here myself, but I saw that Aria was here a lot and guessed that there would be opposition to the idea of changing the healing rules by others.

This thread is here for houseruling rules that people dislike, in this case healing. Some of us don't think that this is needed and that's fine. However, for those people that think it should be changed they should have a place to go without a flame war breaking out. the last thing anyone wants is their thread asking for advice to be closed down because of a flame war that has spread over too many threads. If anyone wants to debate the healing rules there are places to go for that. This thread should remain for suggesting houserules for healing (something I think Aria has done well.)

Either way that's just what I wanted to say and now I will leave.
Healing up to full combat capability in six hours is just implausible is why. The six hours doesn't take into account how the pc's ended up in their sorry state at all. The pc's could have been taking lava baths before resting and they'd still wake up six hours later ready to go. I'm still tweaking the system I've come up with as I go over various scenarios, but it's good enough right now to work the way I want it to. The way I need it to affect player decisions.

The problem being any healing system cannot be based on the cause of the injury or there will be an expansive and perpetually incomplete chart for sources of injury.
While it might be realistic to look and see that "damaged caused by fire heals at #hp/day" compared to "damage caused by bloodloss heals at #hp/day" it's a bit kludge in practice. First the players have to keep track of how much damaged they suffered from what. To say nothing of magical healing (does it heal the easiest first? the worst?).
But if we assumed damage equal to lava baths for healing the rules would suddenly look strange when it takes months of extensive physiotherapy and skin-grafts to recover from insect bites and blood loss.

You people keep trotting out that stupid "this is a fantasy game" crap like it means anything. So what if it's fantasy? Bruenor Battlehammer, king of the dwarves in Mithral Hall is part of this "fantasy" game and he was in a freakin' coma for half a book.

I guess in 4th edition he would have been "in an emo-induced coma" for maybe a page or two.

But that's novel logic. You cannot apply how a novel works to how a game works. I have yet to see a game where a tenth level ranger can take out a hill giant with a single swing. And it ruins the suspense of of the novel to just have Drizzt come over a pop a CMW onto Bruenor solving the tension.

The problem with healing is this: it only punishes low level groups or ones without a cleric.
After 4th level or so, every group with even a half-assed cleric can be fully healed after 24-48 hours. 8 hours to regain spells (after casting whatever spells are left) followed by another 16 hours of long-term care of the party. If any damage remains that's cured by a few more healing spells and another batch of the Heal skill.
And it's easier at high levels when they can just teleport to town, pay for healing and rest overnight then teleport back.

So it only really affects the first few levels of the game, which is unfair for them. And doesn't work towards the design goal of uniform play from first to thirty.

Plus there’s nothing worse than having this tight, dramatic story that gets messed up because the party performs horribly one combat and decides to take a couple days off to heal.

But hey, let’s look at this Vulcan-style.
What are the pros and cons of each system?

Heal Overnight
Pro
* allows for uniform play across levels
* usually fight monsters at full hp (as monsters always fight you at full strength)
* allows parties without clerics to adventure without week-long breaks
* doesn’t break narrative with sudden stops
* less chance of surviving monsters stealing all the treasure ;)
Con
* less “realistic”
* doesn’t always reflect cause (quick healing of major trauma)

Heal Over time
Pro
* more realistic
* grittier
Con
* doesn’t always reflect cause (slow healing of strains and exhaustion)
* hinders parties without magical healing
* lengthy (and boring) downtime that breaks narrative

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The problem being any healing system cannot be based on the cause of the injury or there will be an expansive and perpetually incomplete chart for sources of injury. While it might be realistic to look and see that "damaged caused by fire heals at #hp/day" compared to "damage caused by bloodloss heals at #hp/day" it's a bit kludge in practice. First the players have to keep track of how much damaged they suffered from what. To say nothing of magical healing (does it heal the easiest first? the worst?). But if we assumed damage equal to lava baths for healing the rules would suddenly look strange when it takes months of extensive physiotherapy and skin-grafts to recover from insect bites and blood loss.

That's why I made it so that my system abstracts wounds and leaves the specific effects of devastating wounds up to dm/player cooperative fiat.

But that's novel logic. You cannot apply how a novel works to how a game works.

I guess I've been running my D&D games wrong for over ten years...

So it only really affects the first few levels of the game, which is unfair for them. And doesn't work towards the design goal of uniform play from first to thirty. Plus there’s nothing worse than having this tight, dramatic story that gets messed up because the party performs horribly one combat and decides to take a couple days off to heal.

If your "story" is that tight, then it's prone to all sorts of events that can ruin it. Not just a bad combat.

Have you even read the system I created for my campaign?
Anyhoo... I've been pushing a "Wound Point" system for a while. Whenever a character is severely injured they get a "wound point" that reduces their maximum number of healing surges.
The benefit being the hero still gets to adventure the same length before resting but after resting cannot heal as much or often. Their damage slowly catches up until they simply cannot heal except from magical sources such as cure light wounds. Their bodies effectively give out.
This also means that characters with more surges, melee types and those with a high Con score, can take more damage.
It also means wp are still dangerous at higher levels as the number of healing surges do not greatly increase.


At the end of their next turn if they have less than their modified total of surges there is no change. If at the end of their next turn they have more surges than their maximum total than the difference is lost.
The "at the end of their next turn" is added because it seems mean to deprive a character of a healing surge right after they've been smoked for a bunch of damage.

WP heal at a rate of 1/ #days although each use of magical healing (that does not activate a healing surge) reduces this by 1 day to a minimum of 1.

I'm stiff iffy how fast they should heal. 1/day might be a quick basis, but too fast for dramatic damage. I'm leaning to 3 because unless there's multiple healers the character will be down for days and someone really bashed up (5 or 6 wp) will be out for a couple of weeks.
I'm also still undecided how wp should be gained. I've thought of a couple options:
1) Massive damage. The Star Wars Saga rules for damage threshold might work for this. Anytime damage exceeds a character's Fort Defense they gain a wp.
2) Negative hp. Every time a character gets dropped to the negatives they gain a wp.
3) Critical hit. Every time a character gets criticalled they gain a wp.

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Have you even read the system I created for my campaign?

Yeah, I kinda did a double-take over the "hp have never been abstract" line.
So then how come a sword is lethal at first level and a twentieth you can be stabbed over and over and over and over with barely a dent?
I don't recall any novels where people suddenly become sword-proof.
;)

That and the wound system doesn't seem solid. It doesn't reflect environmental damage (your own system doesn't reflect swimming in lava) and doesn't take into consideration damage not based on strength. We already know rogues do damage based on weapon+dex to say nothing of spell criticals. Why should a warlock's eldrict blast critical do less damage because the user isn't a big brute with a club?

It also doesn't progress well at higher levels. A level 7 dragon could easily have a 24 strength doing 1d6+7 wounds, likely instantly penalizing the victim.
Two lucky criticals and a character is suffering a fairly substantial -2 penalties to attacks.
It also penalizes people further for suffering a critical hit. They get nailed for penalties for the rest of the fight in addition to severe damage and no way to recover mid-combat. And it gives a large advantage to high-crit weapons: not only do they have a chance for massive damage but they debuff the enemy.
The question also occurs, do monsters also suffer wounds?

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The compilation of my Worldbuilding blog series is now available: 

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Fantasy does NOT mean total rejection of realism. It means there are a few unrealistic elements (the existence of magic, and monsters being the most ubiquitous conceits to accept) but the rest of the world is basically realistic.

You can accept necrotic energy infused monsters that walk around and spells that alter yourself to look like something else but you can not accept regaining all the hp by sleeping a mere 6 hour nap?

Actually it reminds me a lot a Final Fantasy going to the inn and spending the night and then healing back all all the hp.
You can accept necrotic energy infused monsters that walk around and spells that alter yourself to look like something else but you can not accept regaining all the hp by sleeping a mere 6 hour nap?

Actually it reminds me a lot a Final Fantasy going to the inn and spending the night and then healing back all all the hp.

Exactly... That 6 hours rest is an entirely mundane element. If the mundane is not treated realistically (to a reasonable level) the suspension of disbelief is broken. I can handle fantastic elements being treated any way the designers want, because they do not have a real world analogue.
Exactly... That 6 hours rest is an entirely mundane element. If the mundane is not treated realistically (to a reasonable level) the suspension of disbelief is broken. I can handle fantastic elements being treated any way the designers want, because they do not have a real world analogue.

maybe you consider rest mundane but i consider it another encounter for the DM to potential throw at us while we try to sleep.
Just brainstorming for "realistic" healing:

Factor in the new Bloodied condition.

Split the characters hitpoints into two pools, a "fatigue" hitpoint pool and an "injury" hitpoint pool, each with half. Keep track of each half separately.

  • All damage done before becoming bloodied is "fatigue" damage. It is easy to heal fatigue damage.

  • All damage done after becoming bloodied is tissue-trauma "injury" damage. It is hard to heal injury damage.


Treat the fatigue hitpoints sorta like "temporary hitpoints": that is, the character doesnt take injury damage until em runs out of fatigue hitpoints. Once, the fatigue hitpoints run out, em becomes Bloodied and starts taking injury hitpoints.

Fatigue hitpoints heal easily with a second wind, a short 5-minute rest, or long 6-hour rest, etcetera. But injury hitpoints heal more difficultly and require weeks (?) of rest or magic.

A character isnt "dying" unless both pools dwindle to zero. Then, "stabilizing" from the brink of death restores the fatigue hitpoints only. But it doesnt restore injury hitpoints.


Flavorwise, running out fatigue points means the character is getting exhausted, no longer evades an enemys weapon, and starts taking full-impact hits from the enemies weapon.


Some magic heals "fatigue" damage only, some heals "injury" damage only, some both. Temporary hitpoints likewise.
maybe you consider rest mundane but i consider it another encounter for the DM to potential throw at us while we try to sleep.

Why do you think my system heals in 3 hour increments? i find that a more than reasonable compromise between the default - which I find ridiculous un-fun -, and complete realism.