View Full Version : Combat: How do you run it?

2010-02-22, 09:34 PM
I know every group has its own way of playing through combat. I normally have my players roll initiative, go around the table taking their scores, and then going down the line: "Alright, Hroth goes first." I don't reveal initiative order to my players other than what they see their companions roll.

How does you or your DM run combat? I'm looking for suggestions to speed fights up and/or make it more interesting/engaging. I feel as though there might be something I could do to keep my players interested even after their turn ends. Normally, that's not a problem, but sometimes I find that they start looking up abstract rules unrelated to combat. I'd like to get them listening to the other players, thinking about their characters' next move, and getting them absorbed in the skirmish.

Any ideas?

2010-02-22, 09:44 PM
I give my players 20 seconds to declare there actions once it becomes there iniative. If they dont declare in 20 seconds they miss there turn.

I find this forces them to listen to whats going on because there is not time for me to explaine everything any more.

The combat tends to move much faster due to this and the faster the pace the more interesting it seems to remain.

2010-02-22, 09:44 PM
Ok, when combat picks up, here's how I do it:

1. We all roll init, and I take all the numbers, including NPCs, monsters, and whatever else is relevant.
2. We go in initiative order. If someone takes more than about a minute for their turn, I tend to move on. All my players know this, and are prepared. I have a minor bit of leeway on this, since I'm running all the NPCs/critters/whatever, but not much. If I'm taking too long, I'll default to a basic action, such as "the orc stabs at you, Bob". With 3.5, we have to keep the game flowing, or it'll just bog down and die.