Reconnecting Outside of Combat

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Arcesilaus
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Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby Arcesilaus » Mon Dec 23, 2019 1:51 pm

Hi, all.

I'm trying to get a sense of how PCs reconnect when they are not in combat. The rules say the following:

A disconnected reality-rated character must attempt to reconnect to her reality as a free action at the start of her turn (or every 10 seconds out of combat).


I'm not a huge fan of that parenthetical addition at the end of the sentence.

So, one of the PCs in my group disconnected near the end of a fight and then struggled to reconnect, even as the fight wore down. After the fight was over, the question remained whether/when the PC would reconnect. We looked to the rule quoted above and struggled to come up with the right answer. Options:

  1. We hand-wave the reconnection. If he's rolling every 10 seconds, he's eventually going to roll the 18 he needs and reconnect in a trivial amount of time, like Fatigue healing.
  2. The PC actually rolls every 10 seconds (or so). This seems silly, but maintains the concern regarding rolling a 1 in the process and potentially transforming.
  3. At the end of the scene, the character reconnects. No reason; just seems like a good transition time.
  4. The character remains disconnected until he performs a roll "in anger." In other words, when the character attempts a meaningful roll, he gets to attempt a reconnection first. The roll has to be meaningful to prevent this just being option 2 above. This could mean he remains disconnected into (and potentially through) the next scene/fight. Obviously, this is harsh but feels more or less like the oTorg disconnection, reminds me of the rules for losing Fatigue gained outside of combat, and forces real consequences for disconnecting in the last round of a fight.

Thoughts on this?
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Atama
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Re: Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby Atama » Mon Dec 23, 2019 2:44 pm

You’re forgetting the most important rule of all, which is that you only roll dice when it’s dramatically appropriate.

Is something going to pop out at them right when the combat ends? Do they have to race to save someone hanging from a cliff, or disarm a bomb, or run to the controls of a zeppelin to pull it out of a dive?

If not, then just allow the reconnect. It’s going to happen eventually anyway so why stop the game so everyone can watch a person roll a 20-sided die over and over until they get the right number? Does anyone care how many times it took? “Great job Seth, only 14 rolls that time!”

That’s why you roll a driving check when someone is trying to run you off the road, or you are chasing a band of kidnappers, or you are trying to cross a bridge that’s collapsing, but not when you’re driving across town to get to the next scene. Sure, you could crash if you roll a mishap but why waste everyone’s time?

EDIT:
The relevant part of the book explaining this is right at the beginning of the rules chapter of the Core Rules (page 108):

Most of the time, players simply say what they want their character to do and it happens. If Sean wants Aidan to jump into his Land Rover and drive to the pyramids from Cairo he does so.

If there’s a chance the action might fail or succeed in an interesting way, the game uses a 20-sided die (a d20) to determine what happens
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Re: Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby Arcesilaus » Mon Dec 23, 2019 2:51 pm

Atama wrote:You’re forgetting the most important rule of all, which is that you only roll dice when it’s dramatically appropriate.


Actually, I hadn't. I wasn't really proposing Option 2, except as an acknowledgement that a rule-stickler might really want to see if the character transformed before he reconnected. I.e., does he roll the 1 or the 20 first? I would never actually do this at the table.

If, in fact, the intent of the rules was that the character simply reconnects after some small amount of time once combat-round-tracking has ended, I wish they just said that. This is my problem with the parenthetical. If there is some other intention here, like making the disconnection last for some other designated amount of time, I wish the rules had just said that instead. As it is, I'm really unsure which is the correct interpretation.

As you mention, Atama, the "cool" thing should be the optimal outcome, and, to a certain extent, making the character deal with disconnection outside of combat ... in planing meetings, macro-travel, etc. ... seems like a fun thing. Which is why I'm leaning toward option 4. I just want to make sure I'm not a) seriously breaking RAI and b) not missing an unforeseen consequence for that ruling.
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Re: Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby ZorValachan » Mon Dec 23, 2019 2:54 pm

The 10 second thing is because the group could still be doing interesting stuff in that scene (like searching for clues, talking to an npc, etc.) and a round is roughly 10 seconds. If the group isn't doing anything, you could handwave... But... In the rules a 1 on a reconnect is a loss of a reality add or transformation. So you could just have the player roll (no need to wait real world 10 seconds) until they reconnect or roll a 1. And while it may take some time... A chance at a transformation could be seen as dramatic.
And it doesn't have to be a 20, in your own example it would be 18+ or a 1. If it was 20, I'd just do even/odd
Last edited by ZorValachan on Mon Dec 23, 2019 2:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby Wotan » Mon Dec 23, 2019 2:56 pm

Arcesilaus wrote:Hi, all.

I'm trying to get a sense of how PCs reconnect when they are not in combat. The rules say the following:

A disconnected reality-rated character must attempt to reconnect to her reality as a free action at the start of her turn (or every 10 seconds out of combat).


I'm not a huge fan of that parenthetical addition at the end of the sentence.

So, one of the PCs in my group disconnected near the end of a fight and then struggled to reconnect, even as the fight wore down. After the fight was over, the question remained whether/when the PC would reconnect. We looked to the rule quoted above and struggled to come up with the right answer. Options:

  1. We hand-wave the reconnection. If he's rolling every 10 seconds, he's eventually going to roll the 18 he needs and reconnect in a trivial amount of time, like Fatigue healing.
  2. The PC actually rolls every 10 seconds (or so). This seems silly, but maintains the concern regarding rolling a 1 in the process and potentially transforming.
  3. At the end of the scene, the character reconnects. No reason; just seems like a good transition time.
  4. The character remains disconnected until he performs a roll "in anger." In other words, when the character attempts a meaningful roll, he gets to attempt a reconnection first. The roll has to be meaningful to prevent this just being option 2 above. This could mean he remains disconnected into (and potentially through) the next scene/fight. Obviously, this is harsh but feels more or less like the oTorg disconnection, reminds me of the rules for losing Fatigue gained outside of combat, and forces real consequences for disconnecting in the last round of a fight.

Thoughts on this?

FWIW, once Dramatic (card flip) Time stops I have anyone who's still disconnected make one more roll to reconnect. Any result other than a 1 means they reconnect without issue before anything else significant happens.
If they roll a 1 they take the usual downsides (loss of a Reality add or Transformation) but are reconnected without any further rolls.
It's not quite RAW but feels neater & simpler than repeatedly rolling, and works for my table. *shrug*
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Re: Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby Atama » Mon Dec 23, 2019 2:58 pm

ZorValachan wrote:The 10 second thing is because the group could still be doing interesting stuff in that scene (like searching for clues, talking to an npc, etc.) and a round is roughly 10 seconds. If the group isn't doing anything, you could handwave... But... In the rules a 1 on a reconnect is a loss of a reality add or transformation. So you could just have the player roll (no need to wait real world 10 seconds) until they reconnect or roll a 1. And while it may take some time... A chance at a transformation could be seen as dramatic.

Exactly, that was my point. If something does pop out at them, or the conclusion of combat isn’t the end of the “action”, then the 10 second checks are dramatic, relevant, and important. If not then you hand wave it and continue with the session.

“Quick, use your Telekinesis to pull him back up the cliff!”

“I can’t! I’m still Disconnected! I hate this primitive cosm and its stupid rules! Hang on!!!”
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Re: Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby ZorValachan » Mon Dec 23, 2019 3:04 pm

All good/reasonable suggestions. Might be a good place to say 'GM's Call'.
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Re: Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby Arcesilaus » Mon Dec 23, 2019 3:06 pm

Wotan wrote:FWIW, once Dramatic (card flip) Time stops I have anyone who's still disconnected make one more roll to reconnect. Any result other than a 1 means they reconnect without issue before anything else significant happens.
If they roll a 1 they take the usual downsides (loss of a Reality add or Transformation) but are reconnected without any further rolls.
It's not quite RAW but feels neater & simpler than repeatedly rolling, and works for my table. *shrug*

This seems like a decent solution. It does away with the silliness of sitting and watching someone roll a die over and over but still maintains one of the big potential consequences of disconnection.

What we lost is the opportunity to really role-play the disconnection rules. As I said before, it seems like a potentially fun situation to have characters disconnected for some non-trivial duration OUTSIDE of combat. And, as of right now, it seems there's no mechanic for this. I'm suggesting Option 4 (above) to create this option ... do people feel like it's reasonable?
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Re: Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby ZorValachan » Mon Dec 23, 2019 3:11 pm

Try it. If it works for you great! If for some reason it doesn't, just tell your group, that didn't go as well as i thought, next time we'll try option B.
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The Paraverse: An entire alternate Cosmverse
http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/237607/

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http://www.drivethrurpg.com/product/228365/

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Re: Reconnecting Outside of Combat

Postby Arcesilaus » Mon Dec 23, 2019 3:17 pm

ZorValachan wrote:Try it. If it works for you great! If for some reason it doesn't, just tell your group, that didn't go as well as i thought, next time we'll try option B.

Yes, well, I did that. I thought it was reasonable, though I got some pushback from my players who felt it was somewhat punishing.

Thus, I'm hoping to get from the groupthink a sense of whether such a ruling is a) seriously breaking RAI and b) missing an unforeseen consequence.

Thanks in advance.
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