Furiously Eclectic People

Full Version: [DT] How do you run Initiative?
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Y'know, the question in the subject?
I like individual initiative but at cons I have each player roll initiative with the monsters rolling a single initiative, then go clockwise around the table starting with the best init. I once had a group who rearranged themselves when they realized that one character would most likely win every init. such that that guy was to my left. That way all the players would get an attack before any monsters.
Do you call actions before the initiative roll or let them decide after each person's action?
At a con, I let them decide at the time of action.
Calling actions first was new to me when I went to play with Greg Ellis and Co. some years ago near Bancroft and I'm still getting used to it. It had never come up in the 80s. In AD&D, we rolled a d6 and the lowest number went first, then called actions on our turn. Usually we only rolled once per encounter.

Calling first intrigues me as it adds some crazyness, but it also seems to extend combat IMO. I'm getting more and more to enjoy quick combats and that Platemail 27 as well as Godlike emulates fast combat well.

I've also realized that good and bad tactics rely heavily on the opinion of the GM and sometimes there simply are no good tactics with some GMs.
With long combat rounds (AD&D's 1 minute), there's really no reason not to allow in-play decisions. "What do you mean I can't change my target? Billy killed the orc. What does my character do for the the rest of the minute? Break out his whetstone and sharpen his blade?"

With later, short combat rounds, I can definitely see a GM's reticence at allowing it.

And called actions definitely slow down combat. You always have that one idiot who can never remember what action he called or wants to change his mind, then goes through all the drama of how put upon he his with the sighing and the obviousness of how difficult it to choose the proper die, which he then rolls off the table so he has to go through all the strain of having to bend over to pick it up, and on and on and on, with an end result that five minutes later he rolls a 2.