Battle Situations

Some special rules for battles.

Late Arrivals

If the party is being assailed by several waves of monsters - say, they're first attacked by one group, but the boss is approaching in the distance - when combat begins, assign some delay to all monsters that currently aren't on the battlefield, probably 100D. When they reach 0D, they join the battle with a 30D F10 action - they're now on the field of battle, and will soon be making things much worse.

A fight in two or more waves like this is easier than fighting all the monsters at once, but more difficult than fighting the monsters in two separate battles - for example, monsters might spill from one wave to another, the party will be damaged without a chance to heal, and they might be afflicted with bad statuses. On the other hand, enhancement statuses will carry over, too.

The GM can make the joining-the-battle action faster, assigning it a smaller delay, if they wish to have a more sudden onslaught.

Timers

Tick countdowns can also be used to time when other events happen, whether they're immediately battle relevant or not. For example, if a house is burning down, or a reactor is about to explode, the party might need to finish their fights before they're doomed - on the other hand, if reinforcements are about to arrive, they might just need to hold out until then.

Create a delay timer - battles can usually be expected to finish in 300D, 200D would be cutting it a hair close, and 100D requires a lot of power or luck. When this timer expires, something happens - this might end the battle, either in favor or against the party, or it might have a narrative effect outside the battle - someone else moves into place, or the villain manages to carry out his evil plot, or what-have-you.

If the time limit is to be carried across multiple battles, simply note what it was at the end of the last battle and have it carry over to the next. As for actions between battles, as long as the party shows suitable urgency, don't deduct any time. If they tarry, knock off 30D or so to hurry them up. In these situations, use a larger timer - maybe multiply 250D by the number of planned fights.

Such large timers might be difficult to use without computer assistance, of course.

Revealing True Forms

In console RPGs, occasionally a difficult battle will immediately move from one phase from another once a boss monster is defeated. For example, a mad scientist might drink of a dangerous mutagen when cornered, turning into a freakish monster, or an alien entity of unthinkable entity might unfold into its full majesty once its outer shell has been defeated. This sort of transition isn't handled well by the "Form Change" action, which is more for monsters that transform tactically. A monster that changes form when defeated is essentially two boss fights, one after the other - when the first phase of the fight is defeated, add the second into the fight with a 30D F10 action.

Failure

What does it mean when the party loses a battle? "And they were never seen again" has been losing popularity as of late, so you might not wish to say to the players "Game over, roll up new characters!".

The party might miraculously survive, waking up after some time - dragged to their lair by the monsters, at the bottom of a chasm, or pinned underneath the wreckage of a facility. If they're fighting intelligent foes, they may have been captured or imprisoned.

It's possible that they've been rescued, but it can be unsatisfying to the players to be immediately rescued - it's more usual in the video games for someone to wander upon them after the threat has passed, bring them to a safe place, and nurse them back to health.

On the other hand, it's possible that the boss hits them with one final wave of energy, takes the crystal, and walks off, leaving the party members to limp to sanctuary. This is really irritating, but perhaps that's the point.

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