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Old 03-30-2021, 07:42 AM   #5
Join Date: Jun 2013
Default Re: GURPS XCOM - how to run?

How exactly do you envision this? Is it something where each player has two characters (we'll call them Agent and Soldier), or each player has a main Agent character and a small squad of Soldier characters?

For the former, things should work out just fine. The team of Agents will do the investigation, apprehend persons of interest, and maybe get into some small skirmishes, but when stuff gets serious, they'll hunker down* and call for the squad of Soldiers. Once the Soldiers arrive, the Agents will take on a supporting role - the Soldiers will be the ones primarily engaging the enemy (thanks to superior combat training and better gear), but the Agents can still contribute by running interference, taking potshots at exposed enemies (or even flushing them out to be gunned down by the Soldiers), etc. That's if the Agents are even present - ideally, they'd identify where the Soldiers need to strike, and stay out of the way during the battle itself.

For the latter, you may want to treat each squad roughly as a single character. You could probably do this with Mass Combat, but for tactical combat it would also work - the characters would stay in close formations. I'd suggest building just the squadleader and having the others function as copies without any agency of their own, simply attacking the same enemy squad as the squadleader. Attacks would target a squad as a whole (maybe for a +1 or +2 to hit, but I'd probably just handle it as though everyone were attacking the squadleader) - on a hit, the player (or GM, if the hit was on a GM-controlled squad) decides who in the squad suffers Injury, with characters other than the squadleader being largely replaceable. I'd say don't roll separately for each squadmember - at best, you'd roll separately for the squadleader and the squad itself, with the latter simply having a higher RoF. Note this is based on suggestions I've read in the past for handling flights of fighter craft - the supporting NPC's get hit first.

*Given how rapidly (in-world) GURPS fights tend to be resolved, you may want to always have some defensible position anytime you're putting the characters up against a threat they are meant to call in support against. You'd use tactical combat to get the Agents into the defensible position before the enemy can overwhelm them, then wave your GM wand to let time pass for the Soldiers to show up.
GURPS Overhaul
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