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In the Jade campain book the caravan encounter rates are defined by chapter with the following kind of statements :

As the caravan travels north, there’s a 10% chance of an encounter each day. Encounters indicated with an asterisk have a 50% chance of occurring at night while the caravan is camped. All other encounters occur while the caravan is on the move. Encounters don’t occur if the caravan camps at a settlement. If an encounter occurs, roll on the following table to see what the PCs have encountered. Note that all of the following encounters are caravan encounters and use the caravan combat rules found online in the free Jade Regent Player’s Guide

What is not in bold is pretty straightforward, however I am struggling with the bold parts. If I read that straight, these rules would mean that each day I would roll for a 10% chance of an encounter (then pick the encounter from the encounter table of course). Then there would be, granted the party does not make camp near a city, an independent 50% chance that one encounter with an * would occur, that would mean that if multiple encounters were having an * symbol they all could occur at a single night!

I searched on the internet of course, but could not find this question asked. However I am more confused by a forum (did not save the source...) that stated that each day the 10% chance was cumulative (day 1 : 10%, day 2: 20%, etc) and was reset to 10% each time an encounter occured.

On the first chapter of the adventure I DM using my understanding of the rules, and it gave pretty lame results. Only one event occured during a ~14 days trip, resulting only in a bad weather. Also the night rule seemed pretty harsh regarding the fact that there were not so many settlements on the road.

According to you, how should I interpret those rules ? Please be aware that my native language is French and I could have missed important nuances in the text (also french rules are not helping to solve my question...).

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This means that during each 24-hour period that the caravan's traveling north and not camped at a settlement the GM rolls d%. On a result of 1–10, there's an encounter. Then the GM rolls on the appropriate encounter table. If the result is an encounter marked with an asterisk, the GM rolls d% again. On a result of 1–50, that encounter occurs at night while the caravan is camped. Otherwise, the encounter occurs during the day while the caravan is on the move. More details are below if you need them.


In The Brinewall Legacy, part 1 of the Jade Regent adventure path,—unless there's errata—it appears that none of the encounters are marked with an asterisk so none will occur at night. (The GM can make their own, of course, as Brinewall says they can.) However, while part 2 of the path Night of Frozen Shadows changes some of the percentages, it does have some encounters marked with an asterisk, and those'll have a percentage chance of taking place at night while the caravan's on the move.

(I suspect a copying-and-pasting is to blame for Brinewall mentioning night encounters, and night encounters were omitted from Brinewall because low-level PCs who can't see in the dark die to foes who can.)

To be extra clear, Brinewall on Caravan Encounters, in part, says

As the caravan travels north, there’s a 10% chance of an encounter each day. Encounters indicated with an asterisk have a 50% chance of occurring at night while the caravan is camped. All other encounters occur while the caravan is on the move. Encounters don’t occur if the caravan camps at a settlement. (81)

The first sentence is using the word day to mean a 24-hour period. Typically in Pathfinder this means from sunrise to right before the next sunrise. For example, if an ability can be used once per day, it can be used once during this period. The second sentence is using the word night to actually mean real-world night, as in after sunset but before the next sunrise. (Pathfinder assumes a 24-hour day and predictable astronomical bodies.)

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  • \$\begingroup\$ Thank you for the elaborated answer. It was very unclear for me about the part of the 50% chance for the event to occur at night, the rest was in fact quite straightforward and as played it, but IMHO they lack interest and fun... \$\endgroup\$
    – Glaerferyn
    May 14 '20 at 18:12
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When you roll an encounter with an asterisk, there is a 50% chance that the encounter happens at night if they are camped.

My reading is that you would roll a 10% chance for an encounter each day. If there is an encounter, you roll on the encounter table. If you roll an encounter with an asterisk and on that particular day they are camping, then give it a 50% chance that the encounter happens at night. Otherwise, all the rolled encounters happen during the day.

I cannot speak to the increasing odds. I am only interpreting the text you quoted.

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