One of the most likeable changes in 5e is how they handled the short rest. This mechanism first appeared in 4e, for recovering some of your resources, so you would be able to get back into action with full hit points (using healing surges) and all encounter powers, to seriously kick some asses. An extended rest came, after most healing surges were spent or the situation arose. A short rest were only 5 minutes long.
Between the testplay and the actual 5e, the short rest grew from 10min to 1 hour, making it harder to actually rest in most dungeons, after raising the monster’s aggro. When 5min can be a pain, 1 hour is certain death and the effects are even lesser, at the first glance: You can spend hit dice, which is after 4th level less than the average healing surge (worth decreasing over the levels) and regain some resources, but not every character as much.
So let’s see, which things are regained during short rest!
- Dragonborn’s Dragon Breath
- Barbarian’s Relentless Rage’s (11th level) DC get reset to 10
- Bard gets Bardic Inspiration back, after hitting 5th level
- Cleric’s (1st level) and Paladin’s (3rd level) Channel Divinity uses
- Knowledge Domain’s 17th level feature (Visions of the Past)
- Druid’s Wild Shape (2nd level)
- Circle of the Land’s Natural Recovery once a day (2nd level)
- Fighter’s Second Wind (1st level)
- Fighter’s Action Surge (1st level)
- Battle Master’s Superiority Dice (3rd level)
- Eldritch Knight can perform a weapon bound (3rd level)
- Monk’s KI-points (2nd level)
- Rogue’s Stroke of Luck (20th level)
- Sorcerer’s Sorcerous Restoration (20th level)
- Warlock’s Pact Magic’s spell slots (1st level)
- Bounding a weapon due Pact of the Blade (3rd level)
- Replace the tome of Pact of the Tome (3rd level)
- Archfey’s Fey Presence (1st level)
- Archfey’s Misty Escape (6th level)
- Archfey’s Dark Delirium (14th level)
- Fiend’s Dark Ones Own Luck (6th level)
- Fiend’s Fiendish Resilience (10th level)
- Great One’s Entropic Ward (6th level)
- Wizard’s Arcane Recovery once a day (1st level)
- Wizard’s Signature Spell (20th level)
- Divination’s Third Eye (10th level)
- Illusion’s Illusory Self (10th level)
- Transmutation’s Shapechanger (10th level)
- If you’re able to regain hit points again due the Healer feat
- Gaining temporary hit points due the Inspiring Leader feat
- Superiority Die of the Martial Adept feat
Fist impression: The Ranger won’t get anything special besides hit points out of a short rest, while the Sorcerer and Rogue just get features after hitting 20th level. Those three classes are very good, if you’re looking for a more fast paced game, while the warlock’s power-curve will definitely rise comparing to most characters, the more short rests he can plan into his resource management.
But the real problem lies in the 1 hour. While the DMG will be have alternative rules for short rests (because, as we can see, not all classes gets as much out of it as others, you shouldn’t just decrease the time value), I’ll definitely stick with this hour. Why? Because there are times when resting is logical, sometimes it isn’t. You won’t take a rest, if you’re right before the final boss room, because he might notice you in that time, even though you did everything to remain stealthily (like the Silence spell).
An hour is long enough to consider random encounters (not only combat ones) and all these factors makes the resting more of a logical and tactically decision and my player’s like to play like that most of the times. And if the danger is less present, hey, take a rest. 😉