The math for swimming in Mind Weave isn’t terribly complicated. It’s completely linear and swim movement behaves just like land movement. I’ll do a flight math post later today, which is not linear and behaves very differently than either swimming or land movement. This post I mostly want to make because I got to thinking about how fast merfolk brawlers can swim, they can reach dolphin speeds, meaning the ability to jump while swimming.
The equation for swim speed is simple:
But here’s a simple google spread sheet you can download to play around with it. C1 and C2 come from the character’s level in Swim, and they can be seen in that spreadsheet.
Keep in mind that in most Mind Weave settings, the ability to swim is not particularly common. Sailors and those who spend time in the water will tend to have Swim I. Those with more training and adventurers will get higher levels in Swim, though merfolk start with Swim C (100). Below is a list of average unladen swimming speeds by race for those who live near or on the water and have 1 level in swim (100 for merfolk):
- Humans: 3.19 feet per second
- Elves: 3.15 feet per second (3.34 for fighters)
- Dwarves: 2.74 feet per second
- Gnomes: 2.66 feet per second
- Halflings: 2.29 feet per second
- Orcs: 3.56 feet per second
- Lizardfolk: 3.19 feet per second
- Golbins: 2.44 feet per second
- Kobolds: 2.44 feet per second
- Minotaurs: 3.79 feet per second
- Centaurs: 4.46 feet per second
- Satyrs: 3.11 feet per second
- Merfolk: 16.43 feet per second
The fastest recorded swim speed for humans in real life is about 7.71 feet per second. These are professional swimmers we’re talking about, but a Mind Weave character could reach such a speed with combinations of Strength, Agility, and Swim. For example, a swimmer with normal land speed (no Agility) and a normal strength for an athletic man (16) can achieve this speed with only Swim XI. An adventurer can easily achieve swim speeds beyond modern humans if he puts his mind to it. A swimming brawler with 25 Strength, Agility VIII, and Swim X (reasonable for a level 10 sailor character) has an unburdened swim speed of 10.76.
Merfolk are another story. A highly starting swim level of 100 makes them virtually uncatchable by humans. A level 20 human brawler could have 35 Strength, Agility XVI, and Swim XIV easily, giving him 16.4 swim speed. This is barely in line with the average, non-adventurer merfolk. But what about a level 20 merfolk brawler with 35 Strength, Agility XVI, and Swim C (the starting 100, minor abilities were used elsewhere)? This merfolk has a swim speed of 52.36 feet per second, or about 35.7 mph. This is faster than even the fastest humans can sprint, but not as fast as many sea animals: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fastest_animals.
Would you play a swimming character? As a swimming brawler you could be very dangerous in the water, especially as a merfolk. Is it worth a minor ability every level to be optimized for the water? Strength and Agility are fine choices for melee characters already.