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Re: (TFT) GURPS combat complexity etc.
Sure. The merchant may not even want to go traveling with all his shipments, either. Many GM's handwave (or mindwave, or use some abstract system (example below), including encounters which don't directly involve the PC's, anyway.
GM: "Hmm I rolled that a dragon met the caravan and no PC's are there, seems like I could just roll one die, and on a 1 or 2, the dragon drives off the guards and takes whatever it wants from the caravan, on 6, there is a battle, and on other results, there was a dragon but the guards stood their ground and the dragon flew off. If there's a battle, I'll roll a die and on a 1-3, the dragon wins and there are 1d-2 survivors, on a 4-5 the guards drive off the dragon with 1d-3 casualties, and on a 6 the guards killed the dragon and lost 1d-3 men."
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