Movement

Closely related to time is movement. Clearly your character is able to move; otherwise, adventures would be rather static and boring. But how fast can he move? If a large, green carrion crawler is scuttling after Rath, is the redoubtable dwarf fast enough to escape? Could Rath outrun an irritated but heavily loaded elf? Sooner or later these considerations become important to player characters.

All characters have movement rates that are based on their race.
Table 64 lists the movement rates for unencumbered characters of different races.

A character can normally walk his movement rate in tens of yards in a single round. An unencumbered human can walk 120 yards (360 feet), slightly more than a football field, in one minute. A dwarf, similarly equipped, can walk 60 yards in the same time. This walk is at a fairly brisk, though not strenuous, pace that can be kept up for long periods of time.

However, a character may have to move slower than this pace. If the character is carrying equipment, he may move slower because of the encumbrance, if this optional rule is used (see
Encumbrance in Chapter 6: Money and Equipment). As the character carries more gear, he gradually slows down until he reaches the point where he can barely move at all.

When a character is moving through a dungeon or similar setting, his movement rate corresponds to tens of feet per round (rather than the tens of yards per round of outside movement). It is assumed that the character is moving more cautiously, paying attention to what he sees and hears while avoiding traps and pitfalls. Again, this rate can be lowered if the optional encumbrance system is used.

Characters can also move faster than the normal walking pace. In the dungeon (or anytime the character is using his dungeon movement rate), the character can automatically increase his movement to that of his normal walking pace. In doing so, however, he suffers a -1 penalty to his chance of being surprised and gives a +1 bonus to others on their chance of being surprised by him (the rapidly moving character is not taking care to conceal the noise of his passage in the echoing confines of the underground). Furthermore, the character does not notice traps, secret doors, or other unusual features.

It is also certainly possible for a character to jog or run--an especially useful thing when being chased by creatures tougher than he cares to meet. The simplest method for handling these cases is to roll an initiative die. If the fleeing character wins, he increases the distance between himself and his pursuers by 10 times the difference in the two dice (in feet or yards, whichever the DM feels is most appropriate). This is repeated each turn until the character escapes or is captured. (If this seems unrealistic, remember that fear and adrenaline can do amazing things!)

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