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Re: (TFT) Why not GURPS? --> Because it sucks! (No, seriously...)

In a message dated 9/12/2003 10:48:40 AM Central Daylight Time, 
srydzews@ix.netcom.com writes:

> The roll-vs-ht to keep going at negative hit points mechanic also doesn't 
help with
> getting fights over, especially if two people with with high enough HT are 
> "Is he dead yet?  Am I dead yet?  Is anyone dead yet?  I don't care who, I 
> want this to end!"

Normally I'm a disciple of "Listen to the dice; they speak *truths* about the 
gameworld." But I've concluded that death-from-injury is one place where this 
breaks down. In all the games I run, whatever the system, I use a house rule 
along the lines of "when a character reaches negative hit points, the 
controlling player decides whether & how quickly the character dies. (The GM decides 
in the case of NPCs)" 

This allows a PC to stay alive through sheer willpower and stubbornness until 
healed, if that's what the player wants. It allows the character to die a 
well-timed death with a dramatic dying speech if *that's* what the player wants. 
It allows the GM to have NPC mooks just drop dead, and it allows such classic 
bits as the knife in back/cryptic whisper/messenger drops dead. All without 
die rolls fouling things up by having the characters die too soon or too late.

For most things, some sort of die roll is the Right Mechanic. But sometimes 
(not often, but sometimes) "GM whim" is the Right Mechanic. And sometimes 
*Player* whim is the Right Mechanic. 

Erol K. Bayburt
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