The PCs are battling a bat swarm, and lit a bedroll on fire and are trying to chase the swarm away by floating the burning bedroll at the swarm with mage hand.

The bedroll will take 1d6 fire damage each turn, but I can't find how many hitpoints a bedroll would have (in this case, sized for a halfling). Let's assume the bedroll is still rolled up, and not spread out.

Rope/cloth has 2 hp per inch of thickness: I guess it's kind of a GM call?

Edit: a simple google search gives this choice as one of it's first results. It has a long and short option. If we take the rolled width of the short bedroll (for a halfling), it's width is 8 inches. At 2 hp/inch, that gives it 16 hp total. That sounds reasonable enough, I suppose. Depending on the fire damage rolls, that's at least 3 rounds.


1 Answer 1


You are correct, ultimately, this probably needs to be a GM call

A bedroll is made of cloth, more specifically, it would be made of thickly woven wool, or canvas, which has hardness 0 and 2HP/inch of thickness. Objects take half damage from elemental damage types, though some energy types are more effective against some types of material, for example, fire against cloth, so it could be expected to take full damage. This means that lighting it on fire would have the potential to bring the bedroll to "destroyed" in just 6 seconds at the minimum, or up to 12 seconds maximum, if a 1 is rolled on the first turn.

Obviously, this is unrealistic, and evidences the fact that Pathfinder is definitely not a physics simulator. Were you to burn a portion of cloth like that in real life, you could expect it to continue burning for at least several minutes, perhaps as much as 10 or 15, if the fire is controlled properly and burns from the top down on a tightly rolled bedroll, rather than a fully laid out roll. Although, that being said, bedrolls likely aren't the best material to burn and it would probably smolder a great deal.

My suggestion

Have the bedroll burn fitfully for several minutes and let it scare away the bats, then remind them that they probably have torches on hand that would have been a better option, because they burn brighter, last longer, and are cheaper to replace.

For reference on the burn speed of wool, see here and here

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    \$\begingroup\$ I disagree that it would take minutes because it is not a controlled burn; that being said, I'd probably aim for it to last between 5-10 rounds (and have the Bedroll be unusable regardless) \$\endgroup\$ Commented Feb 25, 2021 at 17:19
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Ifusaso The type of bedrolls we're talking about for a medieval style setting (which Pathfinder is) would typically be made of very thick wool or canvas, since its purpose is to insulate you from the cold and wet ground, and while both of those will burn, neither will burn very well, and at a slower rate than you would probably expect. It's not like modern nylon sleeping bags that'll go up in only a minute or two, these are made of a much more heavy-duty material and are more resistant to burning. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Feb 25, 2021 at 18:42

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