A Restful Nights Skill Challenge

1 post / 0 new
I don't think it's any secret that there are those somewhat against the "heal fully after six hours rest" mechanics. I'm not personally amongst them--I'm quite happy with the rules being presented--although I suspect some in my play group might be set to grouse about this at least a little. However, from something I posted in another thread and anticipating the need to do something to get my group onside, I've started thinking on a Skill Challenge to simulate the six hours as being more than just getting some sleep...

Adjusting the HP for each day is possibly a bad idea. A lot of work has been put in to assume balanced and less "swingy" combat and part of that includes fixed, (almost)non-CON adjusted HP progression through the game. Adjusting HP available for each day potentially harms that mechanic. Besides, if you still have Healing surges, what stops the players from using them to top up to full before breakfast? ;)

Encounters are not balanced assuming all players have X number of Healing Surges (HS) for an encounter, because in general they are only going to get to use one, or maybe a couple, in any given encounter. HS affect how long the party can adventure for, rather than how well. For this reason, these rules will affect the HS resource rather than the HP one.

The Skill Challenge

The DM may opt to allow the players to select their own difficulty for the Challenge. Alternatively, they may impose a complexity based on their current situation and environment (finding aid and sustenance in a volcanic cave is a lot harder than in a peaceful woodland). Thirdly, the DM may allow the players the choice, but restrict some options dependent on environmental and other factors.

The success and failure of each complexity of Challenge are as follows: -

Complexity 1 4 successes before 2 failures Success: No further loss of HS tomorrow. Failure: Lose 2 of tomorrow's HS.
Complexity 2 6 successes before 3 failures Success: No further loss of HS tomorrow Failure: Lose 1 of tomorrow's HS.
Complexity 3 8 successes before 4 failures Success: Gain back 1 of tomorrow's HS. Failure: Lose 1 of tomorrow's HS.

Loss of HS are cumulative. One HS may also be regained for each week of general rest that a character takes. "General rest" allows some, mundane activity, provided it doesn't prove too strenous or taxing.

Primary Skills
Primary Skills for the Challenge are: Heal, Arcana, Religion.

The list of Primary Skills may be reduced at the DMs discretion, dependent upon the theme of the campaign (Arcana, or Arcana and Religion might be ruled out in a low-magic setting).

In order to succeed, at least [Complexity] number of successes (failed attempts do not contribute) must come from one of the Primary Skills. Successes may come from other Primary Skills, but successes in different Primary Skills do not combine to allow overall success. If the Challenge is "complete" without at least [Complexity] successes from a Primary Skill, the Challenge continues until either all success conditions are met, or failure results.

Skill Use

The following suggests some of the possible Skills that can be utilised in the Challenge.

Healing checks can be used to bandage and tend to wounds, apply poultices and ointments, and to prescribe potions and salves. Players may chose an established treatment (DC Easy, failure counts double) or a slightly more experimental route (DC Medium, success and failure as normal). At the DMs discretion, they may attempt a completely revolutionary approach with a DC of Hard for the Challenge level, success in which will allow a DC Easy follow up Healing, Nature, Dungeoneering, or Arcana check with a +2 bonus by any member of the party the character designates, which may be themselves if desired.
Purchasing success
You may buy potions, ointments, liniments, or salves from healers and medicine men that allow for one automatic success in Healing when expended. GPs for these will be set after seeing the PHB and some pricing guidelines ;)

DC: Easy
The character prays for and blesses the party, asking that the gods watch over them, or the Divine character may be able to focus energy into the party to dramatically speed recuperation. Failure counts double as your patron deity is incensed at your flubbing of such a simple prayer.
DC: Medium
The character recites and enacts a full ritual. Success and failure have the standard effects.
DC: Hard
You gamble on a portion of a ritual being more a matter of tradition than being of true importance, what really matters is the herbs used or the prayer muttered rather than the circles walked in when reciting it. Success means that a player you designate (which could be yourself) makes a DC Easy follow up skill with Religion, Nature, or Healing with a +2 bonus.
Buying success
You may opt to buy one success in Religion (which also counts towards the Primary Skill success of the Challenge if that is in Religion) through the expenditure of your Daily Prayer, either the one from the previous day if still usused, or from forgoing the Daily Prayer following the rest.

DC: Easy
The character enchants the party or their camping equipment with charms that aid rest and speed the bodies metabolism. This may shave some days off of your natural lives, but chances are slim that you'll die from natural causes as an adventurer, right? Failures count double.
DC: Medium
The character actual expends some of their own arcane essence into their spells in order to power their charms. Success and failure at the normal rate.
DC: Hard
You think you might just be on the verge of a profound revelation on the nature of magic and the way it is linked to the lifeforce of humanoids. A successful check allows you or any other party member to make a DC Easy follow up check in Arcana, Nature, or Healing with a +2 bonus.
Buying success
You may opt to buy one success in Arcana (which also counts towards the Primary Skill success of the Challenge if that is in Arcana) through the expenditure of your Daily Spell, either the one from the previous day if still usused, or from forgoing the Daily Spell following the rest.

DC: Easy
You hunt down or forage for food for supper/breakfast. Failure results are doubled when the berries you forage are toxic or the rabbit you caught was ailing with disease.
DC: Medium
You know of herbs that would be of assistance, either in poultices, medicines, or just to burn on the campfire to sleep more peacefully. Success allows a follow up use of Perception at a DC of Medium for you, or for another character with a DC of Hard, as it is harder to describe the specific herb to another.
DC: Hard
You think you may recall some obscure herb that would be of use in just this situation. If you succeed, you may make a follow up check with DC of Easy in Perception to find the herb, or DC Hard in Nature to locate a suitable site that it might grow. Alternatively, you may grant a DC Medium in Perception to another character.

As with Nature, but applying to caverns, dungeons, or the Underdark environments, and likely moulds and funghi in place of herbs. Results of Easy, Medium, and Hard DCs are the same as for Nature.

May be used after some successful Nature or Dungeoneering successes in order to locate a sample of the items in question. DC is set by your success in the preceeding Skill.

DC: Hard
The character recalls that Eric the Magnificiant was thought to only have survived his poisoned wounds by retreating through a field of dragonbeak, which in blossom secrets a type of sap that can draw out poison. Or that King Theron devised a superior method of dressing an arrow wound. Success in this Skill permits you or another character a follow up skill with a DC of Easy with a +4 bonus in a Skill appropriate to the knowledge (so, Nature or Perception in the first example given, or in Healing in the second).
Only one success from this Skill is permissable in a Challenge, and the DM may adjudicate only limited numbers of successes are permissable over the course of the adventure/campaign.

DC: Medium
Sometimes, you're just tough enough to bandage your shredded feet with towel and get on with the job at hand. Option rule: dirty vests give a +5 badass bonus to this check. :P

DC: Medium
"It's really not as bad as it looks!"

DC: Medium
"Come on, you're not going to let a little puncture wound in your neck stop you from discovering the lost treasure of Orphosis, are you?"

DC: Hard
"You simpering maggot! Real adventurers quaff a litre of that poison for breakfast and then flay off a strip of their flesh to keep them focused on the task!"
Success allows for an immediate Endurance check, any failure of which does not count against your total for the Challenge. A failure in the Intimidation check itself counts double as you break the will of your companion.

DC: Easy
In urban settings, allows access to a healer, potion dealer, or wise-person of some description (usually of the less reputable), from whom you could purchase the materials necessary for automatic Healing successes. Failure means only one failure, but you must make an Immediate Insight check with a DC of Medium else you have been hoodwinked in to purchasing sugar water (lose however much GP would purchase an automatical success in Healing).