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Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 5:06 pm
by Lobo316
OK, so the party is heading into some cold, cold weather. There is an expanse of land in my homebrew called the Frostfell. It's a frozen land, populated by artic creatures, giants and the like. No one has ever really explored the Frostfell. It's cold, harsh and deadly.

Question, how would you go about the cold affecting the characters, mechanics wise? At what point do you even worry about it. Assuming they live in the north (not as far north as the Frostfell mind you) and they are from a hardy stock of people acclimated to environs that can range greatly, including some heavy snowfall and freezing weather, how can the game mechanics be used to reflect these conditions when they become even harsher and colder (or even in general)?

I'm thinking, as long as it's above freezing, and they have warm weather gear, not not even going to worry about it.

But, if the temp drops below 30F, at what point do the character have to take some extra precautions or risk the ill effects of constant exposure to the elements? At one point would you impliment CON saves from hypothermia, for example? Are we talking at the -30 point? -20? In the teens? Lower? And does the CL get more difficult the colder and more harsh it gets.

Also, how does metal armor affect this?

Just looking for some ideas/suggestions. The least thing I want to do is overcompliate things, but I do want to stress the effect the cold is having on thier bodies.

Thanks!

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 5:13 pm
by Arduin
It mostly depends of their clothing.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 5:43 pm
by Lobo316
Actually, I guess kill this thread. Found some very useful into in the 3.5 suppliment, Frostburn.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 6:59 pm
by Relaxo

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 8:48 pm
by Snoring Rock
Lobo316 wrote:Actually, I guess kill this thread. Found some very useful into in the 3.5 suppliment, Frostburn.
+1

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 24, 2013 9:09 pm
by Buttmonkey
Frank Mentzer released a module called Quandum Font this year that has rules for dealing with exposure to cold.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 5:59 am
by NJPDX
This feels like hand-waving territory for me. The only time I would ever worry about rules for hypothermia would be someone falling through ice into water, getting stuck outside in a blizzard or otherwise being put at considerable risk for exposure. If you are going to make checks or saves, don't make it overly complicated would be my advice. Under severe threat of exposure, have players make an escalating CON SIEGE check every hour of travel or suffer a -1 strength penalty, dexterity penalty and intelligence penalty. When they hit zero in one of these abilities they die (or they become unconscious/insensate/immobile etc.).

A person well prepared for the cold and conditioned to it is at very low risk of hypothermia in my real world experience as a mountaineer and high angle rescue EMT back in my twenties.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 10:34 am
by Desrimal
NJPDX wrote:If you are going to make checks or saves, don't make it overly complicated would be my advice. Under severe threat of exposure, have players make an escalating CON SIEGE check every hour of travel or suffer a -1 strength penalty, dexterity penalty and intelligence penalty. When they hit zero in one of these abilities they die (or they become unconscious/insensate/immobile etc.).
This

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 1:30 pm
by Lobo316
NJPDX wrote:This feels like hand-waving territory for me. The only time I would ever worry about rules for hypothermia would be someone falling through ice into water, getting stuck outside in a blizzard or otherwise being put at considerable risk for exposure. If you are going to make checks or saves, don't make it overly complicated would be my advice. Under severe threat of exposure, have players make an escalating CON SIEGE check every hour of travel or suffer a -1 strength penalty, dexterity penalty and intelligence penalty. When they hit zero in one of these abilities they die (or they become unconscious/insensate/immobile etc.).

A person well prepared for the cold and conditioned to it is at very low risk of hypothermia in my real world experience as a mountaineer and high angle rescue EMT back in my twenties.
Appreciate the feedback and that is pretty much the way I am going. Was just looking for some ideas, but believe me, I'm not going to make that the focus of the game.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 1:45 pm
by Dracyian
just going to toss this out there, Was watching a special with my dad concerning a research facility that handles a lot of research contracts for the military, for the life of me can't remember the name. But the thing I saw them testing was a "glove" that would raise or lower body temperatures. It would cool someone's core from 104 degrees to comfortable in less than five minutes while they were wearing Cold gear inside a room that was 104 degrees farenheit and after having jogged on a treadmill to raise their core temprature to the 104. The reverse was done succesfully too with the man in an ice bath but his hands still in the glove. The put the glove on after he began shivering but once again in less than five minutes it had raised his body temperature back into the comfortable range.

Just throwing out some interesting information about the human body. Also depending on your campaign and the magic present I would hope your wizard or magic user can cast or get scrolls for endure elements ;)

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:13 pm
by Treebore
If they have spell casters Endure Elements is going to be a favorite spell.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Fri Oct 25, 2013 6:19 pm
by Arduin
Treebore wrote:If they have spell casters Endure Elements is going to be a favorite spell.
Truth. Also, getting or manufacturing appropriate clothing.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 2:57 pm
by Lord Dynel
This is where that old copy of the rarely-used Wilderness Survival Guide will come in handy! :)

The WSG, page 18-19 goes into detail about what clothing will protect against what weather. It's worth a look. The good page is 21, where there's two great charts - one for temperature ranges and their effect on characters (the Str, Dex, Con, movement, attack rolls) and one for wind and their effects (to ranged and melee attack rolls, and movement). The pages following go into more info, if you need/want it, but I'd say it's definitely worth a look. It is available on dndclassics.com, and (in my opinion) worth the $10 price. :)

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 3:46 pm
by Lobo316
Lord Dynel wrote:This is where that old copy of the rarely-used Wilderness Survival Guide will come in handy! :)

The WSG, page 18-19 goes into detail about what clothing will protect against what weather. It's worth a look. The good page is 21, where there's two great charts - one for temperature ranges and their effect on characters (the Str, Dex, Con, movement, attack rolls) and one for wind and their effects (to ranged and melee attack rolls, and movement). The pages following go into more info, if you need/want it, but I'd say it's definitely worth a look. It is available on dndclassics.com, and (in my opinion) worth the $10 price. :)
Cool, I'll go check that out, thanks!

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Wed Oct 30, 2013 8:31 pm
by Omote
I agree with LD on this one. The ideas presented in the WSG are much more in line with C&C than the Frostburn book for d20 IMO.

~O

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 3:43 pm
by Arduin
I pulled out my WSG (haven't looked at in ~20 years) and quickly found this:

"When the humidity is high, thebody tends to perspire more than normal, and it is best to expose
as much skin as possible ... so that perspiration can evaporate and thereby help to keep the body
cool. In a climate where the humidity is consistently low ... the body does not perspire as readily"

This is incorrect. Being wrong about a real basic thing tells me that the author probably didn't research before writing. Before using these rules ya may want to check them out...

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 4:33 pm
by Treebore
Yeah, in high humidity your going to perspire no matter what, its just not going to evaporate, so pour down into your boots. In low humidity your sweat actually evaporates pretty quickly, so you don't have sweat pouring down into your boots. But you better stay on top of hydrating, because you'll be going into heat stress/stroke before you know it if you don't.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 4:42 pm
by Arduin
Treebore wrote:Yeah, in high humidity your going to perspire no matter what, its just not going to evaporate, so pour down into your boots. In low humidity your sweat actually evaporates pretty quickly, so you don't have sweat pouring down into your boots. But you better stay on top of hydrating, because you'll be going into heat stress/stroke before you know it if you don't.
Your body perspires to the degree that the external temp requires it. Humid & cold doesn't mean you perspire more than dry & cold. You just notice it more in humid conditions as it stays on your skin longer.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 4:58 pm
by Treebore
Arduin wrote:
Treebore wrote:Yeah, in high humidity your going to perspire no matter what, its just not going to evaporate, so pour down into your boots. In low humidity your sweat actually evaporates pretty quickly, so you don't have sweat pouring down into your boots. But you better stay on top of hydrating, because you'll be going into heat stress/stroke before you know it if you don't.
Your body perspires to the degree that the external temp requires it. Humid & cold doesn't mean you perspire more than dry & cold. You just notice it more in humid conditions as it stays on your skin longer.
Right, the higher the humidity the longer your sweat stays on your skin, so pours into your boots. In low humidity it evaporates quickly. Still, because they notice how much they are sweating far less in low humidity, including what comes out from just breathing, they tend to get in trouble much more readily, so a hydrating regimen is a important thing to have.

Re: Cold....COLD...weather

Posted: Thu Oct 31, 2013 5:23 pm
by Arduin
Treebore wrote:Still, because they notice how much they are sweating far less in low humidity, including what comes out from just breathing, they tend to get in trouble much more readily, so a hydrating regimen is a important thing to have.
Truth. Tourists drop like flies near where I live. Despite warnings.