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What do you do while you wait for your phase in combat?


45 members have voted

  1. 1. What do you do while you wait for your phase in combat?

    • watch the combat and figure out your next move
    • Stack your dice in patterns
    • Spin dice
    • Look through the rules to create the perfect power pool ability
    • Examine your character sheet and plan how to spend experience
    • set all your dice to max roll
    • check phone/pad for email, facebook, etc
    • read a book
    • pose or stage battles with nearby miniatures
    • Sketch/doodle on your notes or character sheet
    • Nap
    • Study what other players do to get tips and ideas
    • kibitz or joke with other players
    • play a game on your phone/tablet
    • Dream up rules and techniques to get combat to go faster

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I chose "Watch the combat and plan my next action." I know that all of the other things are done at the game table but most of the others are really annoying. I especially get ticked at other players who read, play cell phone games, or other things that completely remove them from the game fiction (to borrow a term I read in the Dungeon World guide). Stacking dice and doodling are much less of an annoyance. Studying other players and kibitzing have the aspect of at least interacting with the others at the table. Taken too far though and harmless joking can destroy the mood that a GM is trying to evoke.

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I agree that some stuff is very disruptive and frustrating as a GM.  Whipping out your phone and checking things just feels like that player isn't having fun and doesn't really want to be there.  Joking around and talking about other stuff is inevitable to some degree but very much of it destroys any sense of immersion and slows play down.  Reading or watching TV is especially insulting, like you just don't even like what is going on.  It doesn't have to mean that, but as a GM that's what it feels like.

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I normally watch the combat and see what tips I can glean from other players who have more experience than me, but also pay attention to figure out my next move. It will occasionally involve planning an attack with another player as well. Generally our group is decent about not messing with the phones and such. We joke a lot, some in character and some out of character, but try to keep most of it in character.

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There might be some generational disconnect there, too. Checking your facesnapterest seems second nature to some and often is more interrupting to the GM than to the person actually doing that.


There might be something to this, I agree.  The problem is, those actions are significantly more distracting than younger people seem to be aware of.  Its like asking a drunk person if they're sober enough to drive - your judgment is not reliable on the topic.

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If we're talking Champions, there's an excellent chance that I'm playing a character with a VPP. Or, failing that, an extremely flexible Multi-Power (every slot is variable, and the pool or the slots have advantages like Variable Advantage, Variable Limitation or Variable SFX). So I watch the combat while I plot how I'm going to alter my VPP or MP slots for my next turn to gain maximum advantage.


Yes, I'm an unrepentant power gamer, but I do the other players the courtesy of having my munchkinism already planned out and calculated by the time my turn comes around. And if I can't, I default to some pre-built power scheme.

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The poll didn't have an option for PAY ATTENTION TO THE FREAKING GAME! in all caps, so I just settled for "watch the combat and plan your next move" which seems to be a popular option.


Does anyone else have trouble planning their next move? I mean, yeah it should be easy for those fights with lots of characters with high speeds when you've got tons of time to watch what's going on and think, but then.... It seems just when I've got the perfect move figured out, and we're almost down to DEX 18 on my phase, some brute with DEX 19 sets off some sort of massive attack (good group, btw) and changes everything - I mean, the whole fight - and then I've got nothing. So I'm sitting there staring at the map trying to figure out Now What? and everyone's looking at me like, "Dude, haven't you been paying attention?"

Man, I hate that.

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RE: Power pools, I have a standing rule, you can't build powers in game.  Only between sessions, unless you can do it quick and simple off the top of your head and everyone understands the math.  Too many times people sitting around while Bob works on the perfect power on their phase.

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