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Provision Points

This optional rule system seeks to take the resources that players need to survive, such as food and drink, and abstract them as a simpler resource known as Provision Points. The basic rules for starvation and thirst may still apply can be found here. One Provision Point sustains a person for 1 day and consists of a half-gallon of fluid (clean water, or ale, broth, cider, goat’s milk, or sheep’s milk) and 3 to 5 pounds of stable food (apples, berries, bread, dried boar, dried venison, hard cheese, mushrooms, nuts, pickled vegetables, and smoked trout). Each Provision Point of resources weighs about 10 pounds. Together one trail ration and a waterskin also translate to 1 Provision Point, but weigh only 5 pounds.

Characters who spend a full day hunting or gathering and succeed at a DC 10 Survival check gain 1 Provision Point. Characters gain 1 additional Provision Point for every 2 by which the result exceeds 10. This is almost a direct correlation to the Get Along in the Wild task listed under Survival, with the only difference being that this optional rule system mentions nothing about moving half your overland speed.

Consuming only half a Provision Point per day sustains a character, but leaves that person distracted and irritable. A character who eats only a half portion takes a –2 penalty on attack rolls, damage rolls, ability checks, skill checks, and saving throws until she consumes a full portion. If a person eats half provisions more than 3 days a week, she doesn’t have enough body fat to endure starvation for long, and must begin making Constitution checks each day to avoid taking nonlethal damage. If a person eats no provisions in a day, she takes the –2 penalty on all attack rolls, damage rolls, ability checks, skill checks, and saving throws listed above. Typically, a character can go without water for 1 day, or food for 3 days before making Constitution checks to avoid taking nonlethal damage. Remember that a character who takes any nonlethal damage from starvation or thirst also becomes fatigued, imposing additional penalties.

Editor’s Note

As written above and in the original adventure path this was adapted from, there is little to no mechanical difference between consuming half a portion and consuming nothing. You take the same penalties to the same rolls, and begin to make Constitution checks after the same period of time, as long as you’re at least consuming water. Even if you were to space it out so that you only had half a ration every third day, making it so you only ever have two days in any given week, there’s no given reason not to just eat no food instead for that day and save yourself half a Provision Point. It can also be assumed that wherever you take penalties from only eating half a portion, you take the same penalties from eating nothing. This is where GMs should feel free to change this system, perhaps stacking the penalties for having more than three days in a week with the penalty for not eating at all in a day, or making the penalty for eating nothing double that of eating half a portion.

 

Examples

Very few examples are listed in the text of the adventure path this system came from, and as it has never resurfaced in any other adventure paths or modules, these are listed as a guideline for you to come up with your own values and sources rather than as any sort of extensive list.

A captive animal such as sheep or goats generate 1 Provision Point every 3 days in the form of milk (and eventually cheese or butter), or can be butchered to immediately provide 2 Provision Points.

A horse consumes 2 Provision Points per day, or 1 Provision Point per day if allowed to graze freely (generally, any day it is not working). Horses provide 4 Provision Points when butchered.

A keg of water is equivalent to 3 Provision Points

Skinning/Butchering a Wolf is presented as a DC 10 Survival Check for 1 Provision Point, with an additional Point for every 5 over the DC the players roll.

An Advanced Boar can be skinned/butchered for 5 Provision Points