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Old 01-20-2022, 10:53 AM
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Raellus Raellus is online now
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Southern AZ
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Default Agency v. Realism

Originally Posted by Ursus Maior View Post
I'm pretty sure these two rules are not necessarily about the same types of targets. The first one is about targets that are "incapacitated by damage" and thus defenseless. The other one is about a target that is "in the same hex and immobile or unaware of you".

Thus, the second type can still be very much a threat. And the second rule is about how easy it's technically to hit them, but shooting an immobile, incapacitated person is still emotionally hard.
You're right, but both rules could still apply in a Killing Blow situation. For example, an unconscious enemy in the same hex is both immobile and unaware of you, so the targeting bonus rule applies. I don't see how the Defenseless Target rule wouldn't apply, as it is written.

Originally Posted by Rainbow Six View Post
By the same token I've never been a fan of games that use a "Coolness Under Fire" stat to limit / control what actions a character may or may not take. I'm not disputing the realism of these rules, I'm just not in favour of mechanisms that artificially restrict player agency - for me I see little enjoyment in playing a game where I'm told the only thing that my character can do is hug the bottom of a trench and pray because I failed a CUF roll (I'm equally opposed to 'inspirational leader' type rules that do the opposite - it's still an imposed restriction of player agency).
I'm conflicted about CUF mechanics. On the one hand, I agree with you completely about player agency. I believe that players should be able to willfully expose their PCs to enemy fire if they want to. Natural consequences will likely follow from such a decision.

On the other hand, I like the concept of CUF as a mechanic. I think it's way too easy for a player playing a game to decide to take IC life-or-death risks with his/her fictional avatar. If a PC dies, it's not that hard to roll up a new one, or walk away from the game. IRL, if one willfully takes a risk that will likely result in getting shot, the consequences are much more serious. IRL, the decision to expose oneself to incoming fire is much harder, and the vast majority of people will choose self-preservation over valor. In this instance, a CUF mechanic does limit player agency, but, at the same time, it adds a layer of realism.

So I guess, when it comes to whether or not to use CUF, it depends on whether Ref and/or players value agency or realism more. That's a conversation that I think Refs and players should before starting a campaign.

Author of Twilight 2000 adventure module, Rook's Gambit, the campaign sourcebook, Korean Peninsula, and co-author of Tara Romaneasca, a campaign sourcebook for Romania, all available for purchase on DriveThruRPG:

Last edited by Raellus; 01-20-2022 at 12:33 PM.
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