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From: Damion Milliken <adm82@***.EDU.AU>
Subject: Re: 5 seconds = 5 minutes?
Date: Thu, 13 Apr 1995 13:21:17 +1000
Gary Carroll writes:

> I tend to have players that will like to explore every aspect of a scene
> before they decide what they want to do, thus leading to unrealistic
> (non-spontaneous) decisions. In certain scenes where it becomes life or
> death (and maybe they have some incredible military tactics skill) I don't
> mind giving them extra time to decide what they want to do. But in many
> cases it is simply silly to take an hour to decide how to waste the troll in
> the bar, or what to search for with the spell Mind Probe (another overly
> used spell).

Yep. This depends on two things. Your groups gaming style, and the
role-playing ability of your players. If they are like mine, then they are
not great role-players (but they're gettin' better folks!), and things like
this will occur. It is difficult at best to get entirely into the role of
your character though. You sammie might be bolting through a dark alleyway,
firing pistol shots behind him and desparately looking for cover from the
baddies at the other end. Tense, tight, fast, nerve wracking, and not enough
time to think clearly. Meanwhile, your player is probably sitting on a
lounge chair munching minties or stacking dice into little pyramids. Rather
different situations. One is highly conjucive to clear thought and action,
the other not. Add to this the fact that the 3 second combat turn in the
game might take up to 1/2 an hour real time. This gives plenty of
opportunity for thinking and decision making which would not nearly be
possible in the situation occuring within the game. That is a fact (fault
some would say) with role-playing games. But I don't mind it that way, it
doesn't usually rub the wrong way or anything, or clash with my particular
style. OTOH, many groups run a near real-time game, or have good
role-players who can play the part of a desparately dashing sammy well, and
make appropriate (rather than tactically intelligent) decisions. That is
what I think everyone would like to play like (or play in a game like). I
know it's harder, but it's also a lot more satisfying for the role-playing
asepects of it. A good GM can, with a bit of luck and maybe a tad of help
from the players, get up such a tempo that this will come naturally. This is
the aim of most GMs too I think, to become good enough to do this. But,
experience and natural talent are useful I spose, which may or may not be
present in any particular person. Anyway, whatever your style, the idea is
to have fun, regardless of just how it happens.

Damion Milliken Unofficial Shadowrun Guru E-mail: adm82@***

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