Exploration Procedures #
As their characters discover them players explore the underworld, the wilderness, and civilized places. Exploration requires light, whether it be carried as a burning torch or granted by the sun, but torches burn out and the sun sets.
The Mythic Underworld #
Under the world whether it be in a dungeon, cave, or other cthonic place, time is measured in turns of 10 minutes each. A torch carried burns for 2 hours, has a chance of snuffing out when dropped, and provides a 10m radius of light for 12 such turns. Beneath torchlight, characters move at the rate of the one with the lowest movement score among them every turn, or 10 minutes time. They’re assumed to be traveling quietly, cautiously, at a pace with which to map their passage. In the underworld, there is a risk of encountering a wandering monster. The underworld is a dangerous place full of secrets and players may elect to spend a turn to search a room with a minor chance of noticing such secrets.
The Wilderness #
While traveling in the wilderness, time is measured in hours. Sunlight changes with the seasons, in coldest winter lasting only 8 hours, while in summer lasting 16 hours. In flat terrain, such into steppe, a man could watch a traveler cross the wilderness from the one horizon to the another over the course of 4 hours. No longer limited by the radius of their torchlight, players in the wilderness always have their sight line as modified by weather and foliage.
On a clear day in flat terrain a man sees 5 km into the distance. Mostly cloudy weather or wooded terrain reduce visibility by one third while overcast weather or forested terrain reduce visibility by two thirds. Ascending to higher elevation or climbing up to a look-out increases visibility. Higher elevation such as hill tops and mountain peaks are seen from further away and can be used to orient oneself in the wilderness. Travel along a river, road, or a shore prevents one from getting lost, as there is a clear path to follow. In the wilderness, there is a risk of encountering a wandering monster too.
Within settlements, we abstract character actions to require half an hour. As an example, a character arriving at a village and wishing to speak to the shipwreck survivor held in the chieftain’s home would require 1 hour. 30 minutes to gain permission to enter the chieftain’s home and another to speak with the shipwrecked survivor. Each complications, such as needing to convince the chieftain to let him speak to the shipwreck survivor would require an additional half-hour.
Players wishing to solve mysteries would be wise to inquire about means, motive, opportunity, or alibis. Players would be wise to remember that those who answer questions may be liars or simply misinformed. Successfully solving mysteries depends on the player investigations rather than a roll of the dice. In civilized areas, there is a risk of encountering wandering monsters indistinguishable from men.
At any time, a player can ask “what do we know of this?” about anything encountered, such a question doesn’t cost time.