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Old 01-02-2018, 04:13 PM   #11
Ulzgoroth
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

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Originally Posted by FF_Ninja View Post
How do you like to assess/track actions that take multiple rounds?
I'd expect the player to handle the countdown for their action, in the somewhat surprising event that it came up. I can't really think of a reason I'd have lots of NPCs doing different long actions during combat unless we're doing a slow-paced (long-arm range) black-powder firefight.
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Originally Posted by FF_Ninja View Post
How do you handle sustained actions and interrupts?
Not sure what you mean by this.
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Old 01-02-2018, 05:16 PM   #12
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Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

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Originally Posted by FF_Ninja View Post
One of the biggest issues I've had with GURPS thus far is the 1-second combat round. In and of itself, it's not too problematic, but the clerical strain becomes pretty significant when you have multiple combatants pursuing multiple actions which require more than a round to complete.
What are you running? I’ve never had this state of affairs. The only issue that happens to my games is that players don’t like things like move one second, attack the next.
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Old 01-02-2018, 07:25 PM   #13
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Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

Tokens and sides of dice make good 'X' turns into 'Y' long action counters. In the past when a PC needed to do a long action we'd grab a D12 or whatever and use that as the countdown timer. Every time turn order came to the player he turned the face of the die one number lower.
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Old 01-02-2018, 09:56 PM   #14
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Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

Another combat time management trick I use is "moving the camera around". I don't usually go strictly round-by-round in rigid initiative order.

Like… if a squad is under fire, at long range, I'm not going to play that out second by second. You're under cover, they're under cover, bullets are flying all around. Are you trying to flank, hold the line, pull back? Okay, you start to do that. People who dash through the open suffer a die roll or three to see if they catch a bullet. A marksman rolls for their aimed shot, then I move the camera to someone else.

Then you run around a corner, and oh no! There's an enemy soldier right there! That confrontation I play out second by second until it's over one way or another. Then it's back into narrative time.

A swashbuckling brawl between four PCs and four NPCs could be handled as four separate duels. So I'll focus on one of those duels for a while, going back and forth only between those two characters for a few combat seconds, then swing over to a different duel happening at the same time. Say one PC gets knocked down and disarmed by their foe. Perfect cliffhanger moment! I immediately change perspective to another pair of duellists—does the second PC interrupt their duel to go their friend's assistance, or are they too busy? And if the other PCs can't help, I've given the player a minute to try to think of something clever for when I put the spotlight back on them.

I find this really helps players get the hang of the one-second turns, by thinking of it as motion-by-motion, as movie fight choreography.

"He knocks your sword out of your hand! It lands somewhere over there."
"I back up, quickly!"
"He charges at you, swinging!"
"I try to step in and grab his weapon arm!"
"Success! The two of you struggle back and forth for… roll again? …a couple of seconds."
"I kick him!"
"He staggers back!"
"I draw my dagger and come for him!"
"That's two actions. You draw your dagger, but before you can strike, he's already recovered from the kick! He hefts his ax back up, but is still off-balance."
"Okay, now I come for him."
"You strike—and meanwhile, on the other side of the room, our wizard and his adversary…"

I save the strict combat order for when it really matters. Say, a SWAT-style room entry, or a group of fighters vs. some big monster. In those moments, players mind less the added detail, because we all can feel its importance.
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Old 01-02-2018, 10:19 PM   #15
cdru
 
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Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

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Originally Posted by sir_pudding View Post
With Fast-Draw that is a one turn Ready anyway.
Two maneuvers, actually
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Old 01-02-2018, 10:26 PM   #16
Dalin
 
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Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

Quote:
Originally Posted by shadowjack View Post
Another combat time management trick I use is "moving the camera around". I don't usually go strictly round-by-round in rigid initiative order.... I find this really helps players get the hang of the one-second turns, by thinking of it as motion-by-motion, as movie fight choreography.
This is brilliant. Your write-up is totally evocative too. I am going to try this.
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Old 01-02-2018, 11:29 PM   #17
Kalzazz
 
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Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

The Quick Reload perk can make reloading an detachable magazine fed weapon a non action, totally recommended


Usually multi round actions are avoided like the plague (or as much as possible) so haven't really ever been concerned with them myself
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Old 01-02-2018, 11:42 PM   #18
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Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

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Two maneuvers, actually
Regardless, counting to two isn't hard.
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Old 01-03-2018, 09:16 AM   #19
Lord Azagthoth
 
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Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

I also use dice to keep track of counting. If it's for missiles to hit their target (which can change if the target manages to dodge), preparation for Sith rituals (by the NPCs of course), meditation, NPCs who have less than one effective attack per turn.

If the players initiates something that takes more than 1 turn to complete, I expect him to keep track of it themselves.
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Old 01-03-2018, 09:53 AM   #20
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Default Re: Managing combat rounds...

Try making a log of combat (which will also include things you have to keep track of anyway, like NPC hitpoints). When someone starts doing something that will take multiple turns to complete, make an annotation like:
Casting Great Haste OOO
Check of the circles to indicate progress toward completion.
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