Thursday, August 29, 2013

100% precision

How comfortable are you with shots that can't miss? How about cumulative bonuses that add up round after round to arrive at 100% precision, or so close characters won't miss? How about impossible shots that become possible after such bonuses are added?

When using machine gun fire tracer bullets can be used to walk the weapon to its target. You literally can't miss. The downside is that this requires time and leaves a bright red line leading straight to your position.

I haven't seen many rules that allow for bonus "to hit" to add up miss after miss, but it does make sense not only for machine gun fire with tracer bullets, but also for sniper fire and even melee combat. Every miss and for that matter every hit could mean a learning and adaptation process that makes the attacker better.

When Corporal Craig Harrison (UK) took his record breaking 2475m kill (2009, Afghanistan) it was by no means a one shot one kill attack. He was way beyond the effective range of his weapon, but his spotter kept adjusting based on prior bullet impact positions. This allowed Harrison to zero in on the target until he took the machine gunner out. This was a slow lengthily process that put his unit in peril.

After the first MG operator was taken out another enemy soldier took the MG and started firing again only to be taken down by Harrison's next shot. After all Harrison had already zeroed in on the target and the second attacker was dumb enough to start shooting from the same exact position. So not only was the "bonus" applicable to the hitting shot, it was also applicable to all following shots as long as the enemy didn't change position or for that matter tactics.

What would the effect on gameplay be if players could keep adding and adding more bonuses as they keep missing? Making impossible hits possible? If each gun shot allowed for bonus for the next roll. If each machine gun strafe allowed for a bonus in the next strafe. If each miss on an armored knight allowed a plus on the next attack as the attacker becomes better at predicting the defenders movement.

For this to work well lethality must be a big concern and time of primordial essence. There's an urgency to getting that shot placed and those bonuses, round after round, are paid at a very high price. The price of getting dead from incoming fire or melee attacks for that matter. The rule could be left open to allow bonuses to grow and grow. With low hit points and high lethality there's little odds of getting to +5. Your character will probably be dead before missing so much, or as was the case with Harrison his unit would have been overrun and killed if he kept missing.
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