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Thursday, July 23, 2009

Play Time

When I got up this morning, I had it all worked out what I was going to write. Then I read today's Grognardia post about keeping time in a D&D campaign, and it made me think. He quotes two things Gary Gygax wrote: in the AD&D DMG, Gary practically screams "YOU CAN NOT HAVE A MEANINGFUL CAMPAIGN IF STRICT TIME RECORDS ARE NOT KEPT", and in Book III of the LBB, he advises DMs to calculate the passage of time based on days (because characters heal 1 hp every other day) and weeks, thus:
Dungeon expedition = 1 week
Wilderness adventure = 1 move = 1 day
1 Week of actual time = 1 week of game time
Now, my gaming material is in storage, so I can't doublecheck this right now (maybe I'll go look for my LBBs next week?) Perhaps someone can doublecheck whether the books recommend recording the small units of time as well as the large? Because when I see articles or game aids related to time keeping, it's usually about keeping track of spell duration or when physical attacks occur during a round, or recording in-dungeon travel times. Perhaps movement was never meant to be more exact than "oh, you explored about 200 feet of corridor? That's about 3 or 4 turns at your movement rate of 6." Or just a good guess as to whether that protection from evil spell will end before the combat does.

It certainly fits in more with the way I play RPGs now.

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