What is Base Speed, exactly?

Rules Questions

While trying to set up a grid for players to display their speed under different loads etc and wanting to show what Walk, Hustle, Run and so on actually mean in relation to “Base Speed”, we have come across information in three areas in the Core Rulebook that is contradictory and leaves us completely confused. It really boils down to Base Speed’s definition, which is not actually clearly defined.
For example, a base speed of 30': is that walking, hustling or running?
The information on tactical movement speed in 3 areas is contradictory.
If a BASE speed is 30’, according to the “Speed” entry, you can move that distance and have an action.
According to “table 7-6” for a base movement of 30’ this is a Walk (and Hustle is double that which corresponds with a double movement).
According to “Movement” having an action and also moving is defined as a Hustle, which contradicts the above line 1.
So what exactly IS base speed? A walk, hustle or run?

no one really uses walk or hustle because they are overly confusing and kind of pointless. your base speed is whatever your race says it is and you use that to adjust for loads and armor weighting you down making you slower.

lets assume for ease, your a human no armor with light encumberance so your speed is 30
a move action moves you 30
a withdraw moves you 60
charge moves you up to 60 unless you need to pull your weapon which moves you 30 instead.
run moves you 4x your speed 120 feet

if your wearing medium or heavy armor all these numbers are 20 and 40 instead and running is 3x speed which would be 60

is there a specific reason your digging into hustle and walk? a specific question? otherwise you can ignore them unless your really going to count the footsteps and distance people travel and if they get fatigued because they were hustling the whole way, these rules have never been used in any of the games i've played in or DM'd they are just too mico to bother wasting time doing the math for 20min

Doesn't it really change anything what it is? Crab walk, silly walk, normal walk, hustle, jog? Everything deals with base speed, not walk or run speed.

Run is a separate action that is going x3-4 times your base speed in a straight line. So I ccan tell you that it is not a run.

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Let's assume you have a 30' base speed.

If you move at 30' per round (one move action) for overland movement you'd be walking.

If you move at 60' per round (two move actions) for overland movement you'd be hustling.

If you take a standard action and a move action per round for overland movement you're considered hustling, and wouod tire more quickly, but would move at walking pace.

As far as combat is concerned, if you move 30' in one move action this would be at the speed of a hustle, not a casual walking pace.

So your "Base speed" is your hustle for a move action, or walking pace for a full-round action. It's also shorthand for "Base Land Speed" for almost everything (swim/climb/fly/burrow are NOT your base speed unless you're an unusual creature, those speeds should be listed separately).

Quasi wrote:

According to “table 7-6” for a base movement of 30’ this is a Walk (and Hustle is double that which corresponds with a double movement).

According to “Movement” having an action and also moving is defined as a Hustle, which contradicts the above line 1.
So what exactly IS base speed? A walk, hustle or run?

If walking is 30' in a round and hustling is 60' in a round (as you indicated with a double movement) then a standard action of doing anything and a move action of moving 30' would be a hustle. (Because if you took two move actions to move for 60' and considered that a hustle then one move action to move 30' is the same pace as a hustle.)

Page 170 of the Core Rulebook, under Tactical Movement:


A character that moves his speed and takes some action is hustling for about half the round and doing something else the other half.

MrCharisma's got it.

Walk/hustle/run does not equal move/double move/run. The latter progression deals with speed per round. The prior deals with speed per hour or day AND how quickly you tire from it.

If I can cover up to 30ft in 6 seconds while also engaged in combat, I will most certainly be spending more energy in those 6 seconds than if I just spent them walking at a comfortable (or at least sustainable) pace. And when you need to walk for 10 hours a day for a few weeks straight, it best be sustainable.

Thanks for the replies; as far as base speed is concerned, we're mostly concerned with combat-related and situations and those where you have to move quickly. Most of your answers agree with what we've assumed as the base speed and have clarified areas arising from that.

The rules may sound contradictory, but when you step back and look at a round of combat as a unit of time, the rules are much less contradictory.

1 round of combat is 6 seconds. In that 6 seconds you are given two traditional actions, a standard action and a move action. In most instances your standard action would take place after you have finished moving. So if you move and attack an enemy, the entire course of actions must occur in a 6 second time frame. So your move action is only a fraction of the full 6 seconds, half to be exact.

With that information we can ascertain the relative speed in combat compared to overland movement speeds. Overland movement still uses your movement over a 6second period however you are doing nothing but moving in those 6 seconds. So if you move 30ft walking and 60ft in a hustle, then we can easily compare this to combat movement. If you Take a double move action that is the equivalent of spending the full 6 seconds doing nothing but moving, at 30ft movement you travel 60ft. So it is clear that combat movement is in fact at hustle pace.

It wouldn’t make sense any other way either. If you are walking around a cavern and you see a creature about to attack you, are you going to casually walk up to it and stab it with your sword or are you going to start hustling? The answer is obviously the latter, you’d hustle. You want to be quick on your feet in combat.

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