Wednesday, June 3, 2015

BACON! Do you worry about it?

How often do you have a party keep track of food?  Do you make them take supplies for a two week trek they are about to begin?  Or is that something you just hand wave?

In the past, I've only took food in consideration when it added an interesting element to the game.  And if I planned to make it a thing in game, I told the players ahead of time so they can prepare.  I've had a handful of experiences where the GM never worried about food and all of a sudden he would ask how many rations we had.  Since it was never an issue, my attention (and coins) were else where.

It can become tricky introducing that type of thing into game unless it goes along with your adventure.  The adventure I ran where food was just as important as weapons and armor, found the party escorting villagers that were displaced because the area had been overrun with a barbarian tribe and a small army of humanoids (basically these two sides were warring against one another and their battle moved into a 3rd party).  They needed enough food for themselves, horses and the the villagers.

The players were smart about it and immediately assigned one of the players to be the food accountant.  He figured out how much food was needed each day.  Once the food was depleted villagers slowed the progress and got sick.  It also would deny the party a full night's rest.  Without food they could not recover from wounds or earn back spells.

The cleric in the party all of a sudden found use for his Create Food and Water spell, which saved their bacon (pun intended) a couple of times.

It added another element of tension to an already tense situation where you have a party escorting a group of non-combatants through a war zone.  It worked exceptional well.  but it also is one of the few adventure where I would make food an element of the adventure.

So do you worry about bacon in the game?


  1. Yes. It matters a lot in the wilderness-heavy game we're playing now. In the megadungeon, we even came up with a handy way to assume eating and replenishment. That way, if bad stuff happens and they get stuck in the dungeon, or need food as a bribe, or whatever . . . we know who has what and that it's fresh. But we don't need to tick off meals every X number of hours. It was an in-play compromise that worked out well enough.

  2. Any time there is overland travel requiring camping I make it fairly important, it acts as a limiter to where they can travel unless they prep specifically for it. That in turn gives me a heads up on where they are planning to go so I can have notes ready for the end location.

  3. Take a look at Torchbearer RPG's Conditions in this light - good grist for the mill!