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Old 11-25-2009, 10:58 AM   #29
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Default Re: Longer combat rounds.

Originally Posted by knarf View Post

I think it's also partly that D&D and other games create the need to be "effective" (doing damage) every round and if this doesn't happen, then players tend to feel useless. A longer round would abstract out reload times and other minor annoyances to allow every player to be "effective" every round.
. . . or the GM could help the players unlearn that rubbish about "effective = doing damage" and create situations where effectiveness is rated more broadly.

I recently ran a huge firefight where most of the PCs weren't doing damage every turn. They were, however, moving from cover to cover, shooting at foes to make them keep their heads down, and generally outmaneuvering the enemy. Thus, everybody got to be "effective" even though only half of the PCs really damaged opponents.

In my previous fantasy campaign, one PC calmly aimed at the Big Bad for three turns as the other PCs screened him and damaged mooks. Then he shot the Big Bad once and ended the fight in one strike. I'd hardly call that ineffective.

The key is to get the players to think in terms of the big picture for their side, with a view to the goal of the entire fight, and not in terms of the selfish picture for their character, with a view to showing off this turn. Gamers who insist on looking at things the second way tend to be troublesome out of combat, too, where combat rounds don't matter. That's because they can't put group goals ahead of personal ones or long-term objectives ahead of short-term gains, both of which are rather immature, selfish behavior patterns.
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