Nope, you aren't misunderstanding, Thufir. I am...!
I was worried that if I went with that idea that players who were more used to the geographical split idea might not like it, but it seems that a good number of my players actually prefer the idea of a single IC thread anyway.
So, I have decided to go with it, give it a try and see what happens.
Glad they like it!
Give it a try, and remember, if you've got any questions, you can ask here or via PMs.
I'm curious to know how do you guys handle player combat with NPC's? (general system and freeform)
Example: I've got 5 players and they enter into combat with 12 NPC's
With just a couple players, I don't see much of a problem. They just take turns posting and responding to posts. It's easy to control, even with variables. However, with a big group it's complicated. In a system game you have differing number of attacks /melee round (attack rates.)
In freeform, how do you keep players from stepping on each others toes?
I'd love to see some examples.
In freeform, we had an implicit agreement. If you have objections to a previous post, you raised it OOC, and the player could accept to change some details, or not.
If you didn't, it was considered you don't object. And then, the rule was that whoever declared actions, was acting before you, and you shouldn't contradict them.
Yeah, I don't think you expected me to reply for freeform
Now, for systems, it definitely depends on the system and on group. But in most systems, I tend to ask for OOC statement of intent for this action, followed by the player describing the IC actions. If the action's description IC is clear enough, an OOC declaration might not be necessary.
However, if some characters have more actions than others, or if the actions are resolved in initiative order, the players should probably have to write a script.
A script might be made even in the case where everyone has a single action.
Now, I agree systems with lots of back-and-forth are to be avoided. But it depends less on how complicated the system is, and more on how tactical the group is acting. (It's just that more complicated systems usually give more hard-coded options to get tactical advantage).
"I attack the big brute, unless he has moved out of range or been knocked out already by another PC. If that is the case, and the PCs have charged, I charge with them where our line it most thin. If I act before anyone has charged, I set my pike in the ground and call for them to do likewise in order to be ready to receive a charge!"
The above is from a rather simple system, but I was playing the tactically-minded mercenary that looks to exploit the situation to the maximum. Hence me having to post scripted actions.
Compare and contrast with my actions in Exalted, which has a couple score of times more rules (I'm not even exaggerating for effect here).
"I jump from the mast to attack the ship captain, almost certainly killing him. Then I turn to the crew and order them to surrender to me!"
So, no scripts are actually necessary in general. Most of the time, you just declare your actions in order of posting, and resolve them at once. It adds chaos to the fight, which might be a feature or a bug, depending on genre of the game.
Scripts are simply an useful option you might keep in mind, just in case you need them