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Author Topic: Making LCS combat more realistic?  (Read 937 times)

SlatersQuest

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Making LCS combat more realistic?
« on: July 22, 2018, 12:06:26 am »

Inspired by this thread, I am wondering about ways to make the combat system better or more realistic.

The biggest one for me has been simply the action system - the LCS always goes first in any combat round, which means that LCS fighters have a huge advantage against almost any enemy. I have been thinking about adding an initiative system for some time, now.

Additionally, hit points are stored as a percentage, and damage is (largely) unrelated to the victim's health stat. I'm wondering if this is realistic.

What do other people think?
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Egan_BW

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2018, 12:15:30 am »

Realism is probably not the thing to aim for, here. Though an initiative system might be good.
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The Cheshire Cat

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2018, 03:08:45 am »

Health does reduce damage taken, but I think with the numbers involved it generally is not a significant reduction, especially not when compared to armour (as I understand it, it can never actually reduce damage lower than the original roll - it can only counter damage bonuses from high accuracy or melee strength).

The tricky thing about LCS combat is that it's very all-or-nothing. You kind of need that guaranteed first round of attacks because if anyone with a gun survives with enough health left to counterattack, the odds are not terrible that they will fatally wound one of your squad members. Attrition really does not favour the player in site actions - they can only ever have 6 people, max, while the supply of heavily armed Conservative reinforcements is endless. So a hit against one of your people is orders of magnitude worse for you than a hit against them is for them.

Ultimately I think that no matter what you change in the combat, you're going to keep running into the issue of the fact that it's completely non-interactive. It's basically just an extended skill check, not really much different than picking a lock, except the consequences for failure are a lot more severe.

If you want to involve the Health stat a bit more, you could maybe have some kind of "Death's Door" mechanic similar to Darkest Dungeon, where when you drop to 0 HP instead of just dying instantly, you'd make Health checks each time you take damage, where passing the check means you still manage to hold on. This might make people with really high Health too hard to kill, though.
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Taberone

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2018, 10:56:58 am »

if anyone with a gun survives with enough health left to counterattack, the odds are not terrible that they will fatally wound one of your squad members.

Being "badly wounded" prevents anyone from attacking, though. With the damage rolls in vanilla LCS, people usually either get instakilled or instantly brought to Badly Wounded/Near Death from a single bullet.

If you want to involve the Health stat a bit more, you could maybe have some kind of "Death's Door" mechanic similar to Darkest Dungeon, where when you drop to 0 HP instead of just dying instantly, you'd make Health checks each time you take damage, where passing the check means you still manage to hold on. This might make people with really high Health too hard to kill, though.

That could also work.
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cdru

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2018, 06:40:28 pm »

Actually, being badly wounded still allows making attacks. It's just that there is a chance to not do anything
« Last Edit: July 24, 2018, 12:10:26 am by cdru »
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cdru

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2018, 06:41:34 pm »

Actually, being badly wounded still allows making attacks. It's just that there is a chance to not do anything
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The Cheshire Cat

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2018, 08:58:06 pm »

I was thinking about the "Death's Door" thing more last night and I think it could work if you set it up like this:

When Blood (the internal name for a character's HP value) drops down to 0 or lower from direct damage, you'd make a "shock roll" which would just be a straight Health check, with the difficulty being determined by how much "overkill" damage was done (so being at -50 would be a harder check than being at -10). I'm not sure what actual numbers would make sense, you'd probably have to toy with it to get a good feel for it, but I feel like in a broad sense it should at least be an "Average" difficulty check (as based on the scale at the bottom of http://lcs.wikidot.com/skills). If you pass the check, you get some kind of flavour text about just barely holding on, and the character's Blood gets set back up to 10 - still "Near Death" which renders them incapacitated, but with enough of a buffer that they won't immediately bleed out at the end of the round (unless they've lost like 3 limbs or something crazy).

If they drop to 0 or below due to end of round bleeding damage, they would make a similar check, but the difficulty should be based on how badly they're bleeding rather than how far below 0 they are (since bleeding damage is generally pretty low so there's never going to be a lot of "overkill").

If you wanted to be "hardcore" about it, each time a character passes this check, they could permanently lose one point of Health, representing how it's an injury they're never going to 100% recover from. If they're already at 1 Health, they'll just automatically die regardless of whether they pass the check (although passing at 1 Health is pretty unlikely anyway). This would mean that someone with something crazy like 20 Health wouldn't just be immortal but would be a lot more likely to at least survive the first few times they take fatal damage.
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Taberone

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2018, 10:59:45 pm »

Also, there's one exception to the "LCS Always Goes First" mechanic in combat, and boy is it frustrating.

Go to the White House during an alert (Conservatives Alarmed), and then go to the President of the United States tile. The president won't be in the office, and Secret Service agents will ambush the LCS, getting the initiative in the first round of combat and likely squad-wiping your Liberals before they can even react.

This is the only time that Conservatives go first in combat.
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Egan_BW

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2018, 11:03:22 pm »

Now I'm thinking remove that, but allow the potus to uniquely always go first in combat, because it's the potus.
Maybe Metal Wolf Chaos has corrupted my mind.
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SlatersQuest

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #9 on: July 24, 2018, 04:43:08 pm »

Yes, that's a point - definitely in order to add an initiative system, many of the enemies would have to be made much weaker, and training combat skills in nonviolent ways would have to be made much more practical. As it is, Dodge is just not practical to train, since the class that teaches it (gymnastics) is so expensive.

Maybe there should be a system for taking cover or something like that? That would at least help you if (for example) you are out numbered, which is a problem I have noticed (no matter how badass your lone squad member is, two enemies with guns are a deadly threat, due to the fact that you can make one attack per round).
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Taberone

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2018, 06:43:20 pm »

Yes, that's a point - definitely in order to add an initiative system, many of the enemies would have to be made much weaker, and training combat skills in nonviolent ways would have to be made much more practical. As it is, Dodge is just not practical to train, since the class that teaches it (gymnastics) is so expensive.

Maybe there should be a system for taking cover or something like that? That would at least help you if (for example) you are out numbered, which is a problem I have noticed (no matter how badass your lone squad member is, two enemies with guns are a deadly threat, due to the fact that you can make one attack per round).

That would definitely help, but then how would killing enemies in cover work? A separate key for flanking around to bypass cover? Also, one of the Dodge messages already seems to mention cover ("X wisely stays behind cover!" at the very least). Would that have to be changed if cover is implemented?

Nonviolent ways to train combat skills would be a welcome addition, nonetheless. Why can't my Liberals head over to the shooting range, rent some guns, and shoot all day? Or something more realistic, since I've never been to a gunstore yet. Surely they'd let you rent the guns or something, though? Or at the very least, let you bring your own guns and ammo for some shooting.
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SlatersQuest

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #11 on: August 12, 2018, 10:38:57 am »

That would definitely help, but then how would killing enemies in cover work? A separate key for flanking around to bypass cover? Also, one of the Dodge messages already seems to mention cover ("X wisely stays behind cover!" at the very least). Would that have to be changed if cover is implemented?

Nonviolent ways to train combat skills would be a welcome addition, nonetheless. Why can't my Liberals head over to the shooting range, rent some guns, and shoot all day? Or something more realistic, since I've never been to a gunstore yet. Surely they'd let you rent the guns or something, though? Or at the very least, let you bring your own guns and ammo for some shooting.

Right now, cover is handled abstractly as part of dodge. I think this is a reasonable fix for the time being. In order to change it, you'd need an individual combat-move system a la XCOM (hence what I mentioned in the other thread). I don't think that's practical with the current underlying design of the squad interface.

Gun stores I don't think rent guns (maybe they would on C+, though). In most of the United States there is at least some effort made to keep guns from criminals. Not sure. In any case, shooting ranges would be like college courses in marksmanship. It's already possible to train up skills (including martial arts, dodge, and, in the TV mod, swordsmanship) in college courses, although I wonder if that's too expensive in general, still.
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Broseph Stalin

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #12 on: October 15, 2018, 03:28:09 pm »

You can usually rent guns to shoot with at any gun shop with a shooting range.

I like the idea of an initiative system, as it is prepared and competent liberals never really have an excuse for losing a fight. I'd also like to see people being a bit hardier, easy incapacitation that isn't necessarily fatal. Consider how few wounded there are when the LCS goes in hot.

Taberone

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Re: Making LCS combat more realistic?
« Reply #13 on: October 15, 2018, 08:37:05 pm »

You can usually rent guns to shoot with at any gun shop with a shooting range.

I like the idea of an initiative system, as it is prepared and competent liberals never really have an excuse for losing a fight. I'd also like to see people being a bit hardier, easy incapacitation that isn't necessarily fatal. Consider how few wounded there are when the LCS goes in hot.

Yep. Go on a shooting spree with a goddamn .38, lots of one-shot kills and a disturbing amount of people gasping a last breath and soiling the floor. I'm pretty sure mass shootings in real life don't end in 100% of everyone getting shot instantly dying.
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