The Rancor Pit Forum Index
Welcome to The Rancor Pit forums!

The Rancor Pit Forum Index
FAQ   ::   Search   ::   Memberlist   ::   Usergroups   ::   Register   ::   Profile   ::   Log in to check your private messages   ::   Log in

Do We Need Declaration?
Post new topic   Reply to topic    The Rancor Pit Forum Index -> First Edition / IAG -> Do We Need Declaration?
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
Wajeb Deb Kaadeb
Commodore
Commodore


Joined: 07 Apr 2017
Posts: 1452

PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2017 7:43 pm    Post subject: Do We Need Declaration? Reply with quote

THE 1E COMBAT ROUND

The 1E combat systems says to start each round with a Declaration Phase. The rules say for the GM to decide, to himself, what the NPCs will do, and for the GM to go around the table, asking each player to describe what his character will do in the upcoming five seconds.

Then, the GM guides the action in Segments, with each segment allowing each character to perform one action. The number of Segments played equals the number of actions taken by the character who attempts the most actions during the round. If a player declares 3 actions for his character, and no other character declares 4 actions or more, then the 5 second combat round will consist of 3 Segments. All first actions are played. Followed by all second actions being played out. Finally, any character with a third action is played.



NO REGIMENTATION!

The spirit of the 1E Star Wars game is blow-n-go. It's lightning fast, space opera action. It's not supposed to be mechanical and plodding. It's supposed to be Wham-Bam! Thank-You-Ma'am! And, I'm gone! A Swashbuckling thrill-ride. Like the movies!

Given that, I don't really think we even need a formal Declaration phase in the combat round.



ORGANIC!

The combat round should be organic. It should be a story told as a breath-taking ride for the players--a story that is sometimes paused with quick dice rolls.

A lot can happen in an instant in a combat round. EVERYTHING can change. Do we need to lock characters into a pre-ordained set of actions that was declared before critical information was introduced to the situation?

Or should we just let things flow more organically, allowing players to play their characters on the fly?

Consider the below....



EXAMPLE!

The sample character from 1E, Roark Garnet, is walking down a corridor, when the GM says, "Suddenly, you hear footsteps behind you--probably from the corridor intersection that you just passed--and a mechanical voice saying, '(click)You there! Halt! Turn around! Let's see some docs!(click)'"




"I'm going to spin around on my heel. A 180. Drop down on one knee, pull my blaster and fire!" Says the player. Then, he amends himself, "I'll save a die for another action, too."



"OK," the GM says. Roark can spin and drop down without penalty. Drawing a blaster, though, is a -1D penalty. So, Roark is -2D on this first shot (Three Actions: Draw, Blaster, Saved Action.).

The range is 15 meters, which is Medium Range for Roark's heavy blaster pistol. 15+ needed to hit.

If the trooper were Dodging, the GM would say so here, before Roark's attack is made. But, the trooper will not Dodge this attack. The trooper is hoping to hit Roark before Roark can hit him.

Roark has Blaster 5D+1, which means he's rolling 3D+1.

Roll: 2, 1, 3 + 1 = 7

Roark's snapshot goes wide.



The trooper fires. Blaster 4D, reduced to 3D for armor.

Roll: 1, 3, 4 = 8

The blaster bolt fires straight over Roark's head, now that he is kneeling.



"I'm going to fire a second shot!" Says the player. He's got that second action that he saved.

The GM says that the trooper will Dodge, stepping out of the way of Roark's blaster fire.

Roark rolls Segment two action, firing his blaster a second time. Roll 3D+1.

Roll: 3, 3, 5 +1 = 12. Still not enough to hit.

The trooper doesn't have to Dodge, but he can't do anything except reaction skills because he didn't take any dice penalty on his previous shot.

End of combat round.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Bren
Vice Admiral
Vice Admiral


Joined: 19 Aug 2010
Posts: 3606
Location: Maryland, USA

PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2017 7:51 pm    Post subject: Re: Do We Need Declaration? Reply with quote

Wajeb Deb Kaadeb wrote:
Consider the below....



EXAMPLE!
[list=]<SNIP>[/list]


So what's it look like without Roark's declaration of below?
Quote:
"I'm going to spin around on my heel. A 180. Drop down on one knee, pull my blaster and fire!" Says the player. Then, he amends himself, "I'll save a die for another action, too."

Allowing players to change one action (reserved action for possible reaction dodge or parry) to a different action (blast him again) isn't the same thing as doing away with declarations altogether.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Wajeb Deb Kaadeb
Commodore
Commodore


Joined: 07 Apr 2017
Posts: 1452

PostPosted: Wed May 24, 2017 8:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A player still tell you what their character will do. The point is, they can do in reaction to another character acting on them. And, they don't have to specify how many actions they will take.

Like this...

GM: The Stormtrooper fires at you!

Player: I'll Dodge, but I'm saving 2 actions.



The GM didn't say how many times the stormtrooper is firing in the round. And, the player is waiting to see how his Dodge turns out before locking himself into another action or two.

The Second Player said nothing! So, his character is doing nothing on Segment One.



The Declaration Phase was not done. We didn't go around the table asking what the players are doing this round. We won't know about Player 2 until the player says something. Maybe he'll blow the entire round watching or hiding.

The GM throws the stormtrooper attack behind the screen, so the player can't see that the GM held back a die in order to get a second action (which he'll probably use to fire is weapon again, but he'll decide on that when he gets there).





Wait? The Second Player does nothing in Segment One. That should be OK, but we can't have him acting in Segment Three with full die codes while everyone else is penalized with multiple action penalties or second and third actions plus any reactions.

I'm thinking if a character doesn't act in Seg One, but does act in Seg Two, then there's a -1D to all codes. Use a cumulative -1D "rush" penalty for every Segment skipped.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
KPeterson
Cadet
Cadet


Joined: 13 May 2014
Posts: 22
Location: Seattle

PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 11:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

While I think organic/spontaneous rounds would work with a small number of players, it seems like it could get tougher to manage with a larger 'party'. I'd see it as a challenge to handle when I have 3 or 4+ players all trying to respond to changing combat circumstances, all reacting organically. I'd like to see an example where you've got 4 players, for example, all acting, reacting, and adapting to a situation. And all of their opponents, too, and see whether it could be a time-saver or speed up gameplay.

The regimentation of Declarations might lead to a plodding pace at first, but it helps provide some structure for the GM, to make it easier and manageable. The plodding is front-loaded. You get the players to respond quickly with their actions - reflecting the fast pace of combat decisions, and the fog of war - and then it's right into the action, with all players and the GM rolling for results, reacting to attacks, and the chaos unfolding. Very Happy Then it's on to the next round, keeping up the pace of chaos.

IMO, if you leverage organic reactions, you end up stretching out combat rounds so that each take longer to resolve. The organic reaction could come from subsequent rounds, with each individual round being concise and focused. IMO, the multiple actions taking place in a round should reflect a character compressing so much activity into such a short span of time, and not responses to actions. (Except in the case of Reactions).
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Wajeb Deb Kaadeb
Commodore
Commodore


Joined: 07 Apr 2017
Posts: 1452

PostPosted: Sat Sep 09, 2017 12:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That's a good point.

I wasn't advocating ignoring the Declaration Segment as much as I was just exploring the idea.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    The Rancor Pit Forum Index -> First Edition / IAG All times are GMT - 4 Hours
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2005 phpBB Group


v2.0