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I'm new to Mouse Guard and am having a hard time with the journey conflict. How do I describe the use of maneuver as employed by the season/environment? Maybe it just doesn't make sense and I shouldn't use it?

So it needs to be susceptible to a bold move toward the goal (attack), and overpower a mouse's decision to rest and recoup (defend). Maybe a landslide that is nowhere near the party if they are in attack mode and buries a resting party? Or a cold snap? These seem like attacks though.

How so I do handle this?

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This is a good question. The simplest way is to treat the journey as a roll against the season (modified for whatever factors like rain or wind or deep forest) that you choose. But you can certainly get creative with creating actions on the part of a journey. A winding path that leads players astray can be a feint, as could blinding rain or snow. Deep mud, leaves, or snow that slows movement could be considered a defense. A maneuver is an action that gives one side an advantage in the near future. For a journey, this might be a lost wagon wheel, a smudged map, an detour that lengthens the journey or tires the team, or even a raging creek that sweeps the team off their path. Creativity is the key, but my view is to never let the rules get in the way of a good story.

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You've actually misread the result matrix for maneuver here. Maneuver forces versus tests against both attacks and defenses, and has full independent effects against feints or other maneuvers.

I'd actually make a maneuver be, well, "uncertain weather". You'd think that would be a feint, but viewed as a response to journey actions, a feint is something that'll clobber you if you stand still but miss you entirely if you're just trying to make progress. I like to use cameos from animals to represent the effects of weather feints - they also make the journey feel less lonely.

You can't make as much progress or get much rest when you can't make sense of the weather, and if you plan for the road ahead or take shortcuts while you can, the weather can surprise you. It can wear you down (impede), suddenly turn ugly (gain position) or make some of your preparations useless (disarm).

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