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fog1234

Overwatch Issues

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I followed this debate for too long not to give my 2 cents.

I would nerf overwatch as it breaks the game mechanics in a way that is over the top. A round should typically take about 6 seconds in which all characters perform their action simultaneously. This isn't simple to put realistically into rules without simplifications and abstraction. I have verified the 6 seconds with running, it would take an AG Bonus of 10 to reach the 100m in 10s but running doesn't take into account that you are already running or just starting to run. Sure a good simplification but maybe not necessary as you could simply get a +50% bonus if you where already running last round. This would mean for an above average human ( AGB 3) that they would run at 16,2 km/h which is pretty fast indeed if you take into account that you are armoured and carrying weapons around. RAW this would be only 10,8 km/h.

But I digress.

So every character acts in initiative order, in order to be able to roll and apply the results of each action. Overwatch lets your break out of this initiative order to take an action each team a condition is met.

My problem with the RAW is that it doesn't limit the number of attacks, so a gun with a large clip size will totally rule anything and there is no limit on the "kill zone" but a 45° arc. It is humanly impossible to keep watch over the full length of such an arc, as it will reach as far as the eye goes.

So my house-rule would be the following:

you can take up to two times a standard attack , semi- or full-auto attack. Each enemy can only trigger the condition once per half action and twice per full action.

 

Your declare a kill zone, which comprises an 45° arc and you define a condition: "I see an enemy in my KZ", "I see an enemy move out of cover", "I see an enemy take aim for a shot",...

You chose the type of your attack.

You will need to be aware (and if needed make an appropriate awareness test) of when your condition is met to have your attack triggered. If these conditions are met, you my chose to make your chosen attack action.

 

There is a focus area in your kill-zone, defined by a declared distance + and - ±15m, which can be larger the further away the distance is. Outside this area of your character will get a penalty of -10 if he wishes to shoot at a target within 15m of the focus area and -20 within 30m of the area. The focus area of your overwatch will change to the area on which you took your shot.

If you wish to shoot a target further than 30m outside the Focus Area, you loose one half action and thus only has one attack during his overwatch.

Any reaction action will break the overwatch.

 

So key to me are: your focus vision and aim is limited, your shots are limited to one bonus and you may choose not to take the overwatch shot. To avoid being forced to take a bad shot or shoot at a unimportant target.

Sure this seems a lot more rules but it feels a lot more intuitive and is still manageable. I put in the number of 15m as it would be the typical distance a humanoid should be able to cover in one round. This is an estimation and mainly to make the point that the focus area is limited.

PS: I've read multiple in this thread that snipers should be overpowered. This is true in my house-rule as I believe that the main advantage of a sniper is range. They can take shots well over 400m without being easily spot by vision. Take into how long it takes for a human to close the gap (± 17 turns) and the sniper should be able to get 34 shots (forgetting clip size) in before people are getting in the 100m range (at standard human running speed). By then the sniper will have run away to hide or get into another position. Or you have run into an ambush, set up by the comrades of the sniper :-D

Sure you can start to design your encounters to allow for this, but this isn't much fun if you do it each turn.

Most of what you suggest here is in fact the RAW. a couple of points that are not are the "Visual focus area, shot limitation and picking your target". 1.) If you are in an entrenched position such as a Bunker or foxhole, your VF is effectively "Downrange" so ANY movement could trigger it!  2.) The greatest strength of a machine gun is the ability to mow down "mobs" of enemies if properly used. I wouldn't want to take that away. 3.) Picking your target is situational. A Sniper might focus on one target for the "If he pops up to shoot I'll blow his head off!" type of shot. But if your stated condition is "If anyone enters my killzone" than you can not pick your target. You might elect to not fire (IE if a friendly crosses your gunsight!) but that is effectively a "Hold" action and would end overwatch for that turn. That is the RAW and that's how I would apply them.

 

A couple of "Clarifications" I use:

 

1.) Conditions that specify an ANY type of action such as ANY movement or ANYONE tries to make an attack WILL require an Awareness test that may very well have modifiers attached. (Bad guys don't generally have "Ok you can shoot me now!" signs on their chests! ;) )

 

2.) The Aim action may not be used in Conjunction with overwatch. It is by definition a "snapshot" so there is no time to aim.

 

3.) While overwatch may be used multiple times during a round it may only applied against any given target once. The whole premise of an Orc boyz headlong charge is "Sumbody's gonna git to ya'z!"

 

If I were to change overwatch at all I might consider the following:

 

A.) Allow Dodge actions against triggers that specify movement actions (Mixed feelings on this one.) Of course, said dodge would replace whatever action the target was attempting and might leave them exposed . (If you dive to the ground during a "Tactical advance" you are no longer in cover!)

 

B.) Double the "Fail rate" of the weapon for each shot after the first due to insufficient cooling. If the weapon fails during subsequent shots it is damaged and may not be fired until repaired. (A routine [+10] Trade: Armourer or Challenging [+0] Tech use test to replace the barrel] Of course you must have the parts/materials to perform said repair!

Edited by Radwraith

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Soo last Saturday we had Overwatch done by my Player...

 

I ran it vanilla out of the book except for 1 change (#of Reactions everybody gets = INT Bonus)

 

With that in mind - it worked as one would expect - if a person was aiming a gun at a 90' corner hallway turn...

 

But - I do what to say - if your a game designer (think chess a timeless game that's "fair" no game creep no cheesing in chess) you need t think up a foil for any boon you want to give players!

 

Fine I can overwatch - well where is the rock, paper, scissors (defaultable regular action) I can do against that - ATM none I have to rely on grenades, running around positions, and or GM's hand thing (which to me is not sporting / not fun)...

 

By definition Overwatch is one of the regular things you or anybody can do with a gun in the game - and thats great!

 

But whats the foil?

 

They "needed" to make something up like "RUSH"

 

Perform a RUN action that bypasses any Overwatch placed in a kill zone - at the end of the RUN action you are fatgiued or stunned until the beginning of the next round or something along those lines!

 

RUSH would be for things with 2 legs and such

 

SWARM would be things crawling end over end on top of each other to get to you and past your Overwatch...

 

Just throwing that into the hat - hopefully somebody from FFG will hire me one day ROTFL

 

Stay GAMING

Morbid

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Don't know your specific situation but here's a couple of questions:

 

1.) Did the enemy know the acolyte was there?

2.) Were there other approaches to the area?

3.) Was there cover within move distance of the kill zone edge?

 

I think your rock, paper, scissors analogy is a little off but to use it as best I can, here are my thoughts;

 

1.) If the enemy knows the acolyte has covered a given kill zone they could simply opt not to enter it.

2.) If there are other approaches to the room or other enemies that could attack the acolyte then overwatch is negated. remember, ANY action other than firing into the kill zone negates overwatch! Also, If there are other approaches to the area than enemy stealth becomes a real issue! I would apply serious modifiers to a character on overwatch trying to use awareness on enemies approaching from a different direction!

3.) Tactical advance, allows the player to move from cover to cover without losing it's benefit. While it does not grant a dodge against overwatch, the cover provided may prevent even a successful shot from doing much if any damage. Also, the RUN action provides a -20 to your attack roll so that could help pretty drastically!

 

All of the above options use RAW actions without resorting to Smoke grenades, flashbangs or Gm fiat! Any of them could mitigate or defeat overwatch. Hope this helps!

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Hey Radwraith!

 

1. Yes the "foes" knew they where there - the "PC" even called out to them at first...

    But keep in mind the "good guys" were in the darkness looking at the foes coming from a lit area...

 

2. Not really - I used an old "Last Stand" map from an old White Dwarf mag - I can sent you the whole map if you like - I got it gridded for 45 pixels by 45 - than can be halved to 90 pixels instead... (native space hulk "box" size)

 

3. No it was an open hallway to death LOL (both the PC and his mysterious ally both took to Overwatching that hallway)

 

SEE MAP BELOW

chambers-n-corridors-challenge.jpg

Edited by MorbidDon

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The PC and his ally escaped southward off the map you see - because a Gun Servitor arrived a bit more south of that position causing the "ally" to flee - because he knew what it was before even seeing it (he "lives" there) - which was followed by the PC - they were both shot at by the Gun Servitor who almost killed my single player with one good head shot - I think I did like 12 damage (after soak - i just know he went from full health to -1 Crit/Head), it was ridiculous lol

 

The "bad guys" north of the PC knew what the gun servitor sounded like too - so they fled as well (this was a "cue" for my player that something really bad is a coming LMFAO)

Edited by MorbidDon

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Nice map! In this case, good tactics were used by the acolytes and overwatch was apparently used as intended!

 

Possible solutions:

 

1.) Bad guys use Suppressive fire action from north end of corridor to force pinning check on acolyte. (Whether he's hit or not!) If successful, no more everwatch because pinning only allows a half action.

2.) Use flaming oil barrel to ignite junk and create a smokescreen to cover their approach. Again, no line of sight, no overwatch!

3.) Your molitov cocktails are a perfectly rational response to the type of "aggressive negotiations" happening here!

 

Just my two cents! Hi to you to MorbidDon! 

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Let me play Debil's Advocate for a second here tho...

 

CORE BOOK QUOTES

 

Reactions - Page 217
A Reaction is a special action made in response to some event,
such as an attack. A character receives one Reaction each round,
which he can only use when it is not his turn. Examples include
making an Evasion test to avoid an attack.



Using Actions - Page 218
Characters can only take one action with the Attack subtype
and one action with the Concentration subtype during their turn.

They can still take Reactions with the Concentration or Attack
subtype during the same round, since this does not happen during
their turn. Note that sustaining psychic powers (most of which
have the Concentration subtype) does not count as taking actions

 

My two or three Cents...

 

There it is folks - by raw vanilla unless you got some sort of special ability you get ONE REACTION by default in the game. So the whole "whenever" clause people are reading into with Overwatch counts only once not ever time - and if / when each time - do you have the REACTIONs to pay for that actual action you are taking?

 

OVERWATCH
Type: Full Action
Subtypes: Attack, Concentration, Ranged
The active character guards a specific area or target, poised to
shoot at an opportune moment. When Overwatch is declared, the
active character establishes a kill zone consisting of any general
area, such as a corridor or tree line, which encompasses a 45°
arc in the direction that the active character is facing. The active
character then specifies Standard Attack, Full Auto Burst, or
Semi-Auto Burst, along with the conditions under which he will
perform the chosen attack.

 

Each any time the specified conditions
are met before the start of the character’s next turn, he can perform
that attack (so long as he is otherwise eligible to do so).

 

IE do I have multiple reactions or just the default single - and did I use it already?!
This then greatly reduces Overwatch's effectiveness - a big gripe for many...

 

 

This attack occurs the moment the condition is met, such as an enemy
entering the kill zone. If it occurs at the same time as another
character’s action, the character with the higher Agility acts first.
If both characters have the same Agility, they make an Opposed
Agility test to see who acts first. After the attack is resolved, even if
it does not succeed, targets must immediately make a Challenging
(+0) Pinning test or become Pinned (see page 230) where they
entered the kill zone. If a character on Overwatch performs any
actions or Reactions, such as Evasion, his Overwatch immediately
ends. Note this does not include Free Actions, such as speech.

 

OK I'm done - I think if all the laws and clauses have been dissected - this would make sense...

 

Otherwise - I play Overwatch in my games differently - to be more aligned with the computer game experience I' used to from Space Hulk to Xcom...

 

Stay GAMING

Morbid
 

Edited by MorbidDon

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Let me play Debil's Advocate for a second here tho...

 

Morbid

 

 

Here is my email back from Tim.  This is the official answer.  I can send you the entire exchange if you want.  PM me.  

 

 

 

Hi fog1234 I’m not sure how Overwatch would exceed a weapon’s rate of fire. The character is making an attack roll, which depending on the settings used for the overwatch shooting would be resolved normally. In the example in your posting, the sniper is firing single shots, so is not exceeding the rate of fire if the weapon is (1/–/–). The sniper might be making more shots than he’d normally get in a turn, but is also sacrificing doing anything else to do so. Rate of fire isn’t a measure of how many shots you can get a turn, it’s more about how many bullets go flying when you depress the trigger. 

 
Did this help? Let me know if not and we can discuss it further. And as always, thanks for playing!

Tim Huckelbery

RPG Producer
Fantasy Flight Games

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Let me play Debil's Advocate for a second here tho...

 

Morbid

 

 

Here is my email back from Tim.  This is the official answer.  I can send you the entire exchange if you want.  PM me.  

 

 

 

Hi fog1234 I’m not sure how Overwatch would exceed a weapon’s rate of fire. The character is making an attack roll, which depending on the settings used for the overwatch shooting would be resolved normally. In the example in your posting, the sniper is firing single shots, so is not exceeding the rate of fire if the weapon is (1/–/–). The sniper might be making more shots than he’d normally get in a turn, but is also sacrificing doing anything else to do so. Rate of fire isn’t a measure of how many shots you can get a turn, it’s more about how many bullets go flying when you depress the trigger. 

 
Did this help? Let me know if not and we can discuss it further. And as always, thanks for playing!

Tim Huckelbery

RPG Producer
Fantasy Flight Games

 

The problem is using a game term, Rate of Fire, with a "real world" concept of rate of fire. Indeed, the rules clearly indicate that RoF in the game is only on a per-attack basis, and there is no game rule indicating that only a certain amount of attacks can be made with Overwatch (the opposite really). To be honest, the matter is hardly a "rules question" and instead is more a "rules critique," and I'm not sure the Rules Question interface on the FFG site handles that very well..

 

What is insane to me though is that a seemingly rational game designer doesn't consider allowing a "single shot" weapon to fire a number of shots during a fixed length turn a problem.

 

If making a single attack is at the cost of only half of what you can do a turn, making infinite attacks shouldn't -only- cost being all that you can do a turn. If attacking your enemy first and more often is what ultimately makes your enemies stop attacking, making a decision that maximizes your amount of attacks is a reasonable idea.

 

I'd also really just like to point out that if I went to a convention, signed up for a scheduled game of DH2.0 with a group of players I do not know as well as a GM I do not know, used the normal rules for creating a character, had some base character with a flamer, and then proceeded to play in that game using RAW relating to the use of Overwatch, I would bet money that nine times out of ten I would be ejected from the game by those people. "Oh, my Overwatch triggers, I shoot the guy. He can't dodge, do the Agility check to see if he catches on fire. Alright, now do the Willpower check to see if he is Pinned. OK, he is on fire and pinned? He can't take the Full Action to put himself out. Alright, my Overwatch triggers against the next NPC, the one next to the first guy, I hit both the second and first guy with the flamer, make the same checks as before, etc."

 

Following the rules of the game would turn someone into "That Guy." This isn't even a matter of (mis)using some often unused talent or some remarkably rare or obscure item. This is a matter of using one of the -few- actions listed in the combat rules section in the exact way that the developers/FAQ/errata have stated it is to be used. Following those rules to their natural and logical conclusion makes a player an obnoxious person at a "normal" gaming table.

 

The average GM/player will look at these rules and not realize the extent of Overwatch's effectiveness. They would merely view it as a delayed attack action. Some basic rule thrown in to account for the concept of initiative order not producing an effective simulation of events. That normal players can look at the rules and not recognize this is a problem. If Overwatch is intended to be an equal counterpart to actions like Standard Attack, Full Auto, or even Suppressing Fire, then something should make that obvious.

Edited by KommissarK

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I agree with you Kommissark...

 

"For me" Overwatch should be a Reaction... unless you do Defensive Stance (by that definition as a Reaction you'd only get 1 Overwatch "attack" a Round)

 

FYI Defensive Stance gives you ONE MORE Reaction per Round

 

Good Disscussion

Morbid

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The idea of having Overwatch as a reaction is pretty interesting and does sort of mimic how Overwatch works on the tabletop. I'd be inclined to treat it similarly to how Counter Attack works and impose a -20 penalty on "Overwatch" attacks as a reaction. Because it consumes a reaction, it wouldn't run into the problem of having the Overwatch RoF exceed the standard RoF which is the main problem with how Overwatch currently works. The only way to get around the limitation is by using Defensive Stance as you said Morbid but I would argue that's a good thing as Defensive Stance barely gets used by my group.

 

If you didn't want to go down that path, I reckon the simple fix for Overwatch would be that you are capped by your weapon's RoF for the entire round depending on the attack action you declare. You could then also choose to split your shots so that you don't burn your entire RoF on a single target, eg. you declare a full-auto Overwatch with an autogun and you could split your 10 shots in any way you want provided your targets satisfy the conditions (2 on that heretic, 4 on the cult leader, etc). Because you declared a full-auto Overwatch, all of your attacks will be at -10 but you could disperse your shots to different targets until you max out your weapon's full-auto RoF for the round. Considering the other benefits of Overwatch, it's still a good action to take but certainly not as good as it is currently RAW.

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Following the rules of the game would turn someone into "That Guy." This isn't even a matter of (mis)using some often unused talent or some remarkably rare or obscure item. This is a matter of using one of the -few- actions listed in the combat rules section in the exact way that the developers/FAQ/errata have stated it is to be used. Following those rules to their natural and logical conclusion makes a player an obnoxious person at a "normal" gaming table.

 

The average GM/player will look at these rules and not realize the extent of Overwatch's effectiveness. They would merely view it as a delayed attack action. Some basic rule thrown in to account for the concept of initiative order not producing an effective simulation of events. That normal players can look at the rules and not recognize this is a problem. If Overwatch is intended to be an equal counterpart to actions like Standard Attack, Full Auto, or even Suppressing Fire, then something should make that obvious.

 

 

This caused a lot of issues in one of my games.  Basically, a player showed up knowing how to use overwatch when four of us out of the total of five including myself as GM didn't exactly know how to use it.  Anyway, it broke encounters and modeled encounters very quickly.  I eventually nerfed overwatch after I saw what it was capable of doing against my hordes of hand to hand only enemies.

 

One of the problems for me in coping with this is that I had the option of spamming out more hand to hand enemies, which bogs down Dark Heresy or effectively crossing out a rule.  

 

I can't understand how we have such a unclear rule still in books by the second edition.  I mean it's been this way since first edition.  People didn't understand it then.  They don't understand it now.  This is a problem.  

 

Delay action exists....

   

Edited by fog1234

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Following the rules of the game would turn someone into "That Guy." This isn't even a matter of (mis)using some often unused talent or some remarkably rare or obscure item. This is a matter of using one of the -few- actions listed in the combat rules section in the exact way that the developers/FAQ/errata have stated it is to be used. Following those rules to their natural and logical conclusion makes a player an obnoxious person at a "normal" gaming table.

 

The average GM/player will look at these rules and not realize the extent of Overwatch's effectiveness. They would merely view it as a delayed attack action. Some basic rule thrown in to account for the concept of initiative order not producing an effective simulation of events. That normal players can look at the rules and not recognize this is a problem. If Overwatch is intended to be an equal counterpart to actions like Standard Attack, Full Auto, or even Suppressing Fire, then something should make that obvious.

 

 

This caused a lot of issues in one of my games.  Basically, a player showed up knowing how to use overwatch when four of us out of the total of five including myself as GM didn't exactly know how to use it.  Anyway, it broke encounters and modeled encounters very quickly.  I eventually nerfed overwatch after I saw what it was capable of doing against my hordes of hand to hand only enemies.

 

One of the problems for me in coping with this is that I had the option of spamming out more hand to hand enemies, which bogs down Dark Heresy or effectively crossing out a rule.  

 

I can't understand how we have such a unclear rule still in books by the second edition.  I mean it's been this way since first edition.  People didn't understand it then.  They don't understand it now.  This is a problem.  

 

Delay action exists....

   

 

 

It's not unclear, you just don't like it! The way overwatch works is both realistic and cinematic. For example; take the Sniper toward the end of the movie Saving private Ryan; He was using a Bolt action Sniper rifle! As demonstrated there; a skilled rifleman can get off a lot more than 1 shot in 6 seconds. Also bear in mind that most of the "Single shot" weapons in DH are really capble of much faster rates of fire IRL. Check out a revolver in a trick shot competition some time and see how many shots the guy gets off in six seconds! Unless you're firing a flintlock you're probably not beyond the realm of reason taking more than one shot during overwatch! Remember though:

* You cannot "Aim" during overwatch (So much of the Sniper rifle's effectiveness is taken away. Just like IRL!)

* The Enemy must perform some "Action" (As defined in "Actions in combat". Breathing or blinking doesn't cut it!) to trigger overwatch

* while the Acolyte might make multiple attacks in his turn, a given target can only meet the "Trigger condition" once (By performing the triggering action.) and thus any given enemy may only be attacked once. 

* ANY other action including evasions or failing a pinning test ends overwatch!

* Targets do NOT lose the benefits of cover during overwatch fire. thus, if a target is able to "Tactical Advance" from one cover to another while triggering overwatch, they would maintain their cover benefits even though they are technically exposed! (RAW)

* Overwatch does NOT grant you magic X-ray vision! Smokescreens, Flash grenades and even simple stealth (Where applicable) render overwatch pretty useless!

 

My Conclusion: Overwatch is a valid action/tactic for flayers and bad guys to use. Gm's must avoid the tendency to be lazy in their encounter generation! Not every thug with an autogun is going to know exactly how to counter overwatch but many of their leaders will! Play intelligent bad guys as intelligent and you should do just fine!

I agree with you Kommissark...

 

"For me" Overwatch should be a Reaction... unless you do Defensive Stance (by that definition as a Reaction you'd only get 1 Overwatch "attack" a Round)

 

FYI Defensive Stance gives you ONE MORE Reaction per Round

 

Good Disscussion

Morbid

If you wanted to do this you could not use "Defensive stance" with "Overwatch" anyway. Overwatch is a full round action that cannot be combined with any other.

 

If I was to Nerf overwatch at all, (I wouldn't personally!) it would be to allow the target an "Evasion" if they were otherwise eligible. Even that throws off how it's supposed to work though! Consider this alternate use of "Overwatch":

 

Your Arbitrator has been tasked with bringing in a specific heretic alive by your Inquisitor. Through effective stealth, you manage to get behind said heretic at point blank range. He is unaware of your presence as yet. On your initiative, you use a Free action to say FREEZE MOTHER F*****! Then for your action you declare overwatch with the trigger; "If he moves or attacks" using your Hand cannon.

 

IRL (And the movies for that matter!) you got him dead to rights and if the Heretic doesn't want his head blown off (Most are risk averse to that sort of thing!), he's going to hold very still! By the RAW, that's exactly what should happen here! You are +40 (+30 for PB range and +10 for single shot) to your attack and your opponent cannot evade! Even if you miss he must roll a pinning check or his next action is to scurry for cover or retreat! This is also true when you as the GM want to capture an Acolyte btw!

 

Without the RAW definition of Overwatch, How would you handle this? In EVERY case where there is not such a severe disadvantage, (Particularly with players who tend to want to resist being abused in captivity for some reason!) the target will simply initiate combat with the Arbitrator and your chance to capture them is lost! (Actually wasted since you as a GM KNOW this is how it will play out!)

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It's not unclear, you just don't like it! The way overwatch works is both realistic and cinematic. 

 

 

RAW Overwatch is a central mechanic.  Akin to aim, standard attack, or move when used properly.

 

 Statistics taken from players suggest that there is confusion.     

 

This thread suggests that there is confusion.

 

I do know what developer intent is now.  That's the only thing that has really changed.  

 

 

http://www.strawpoll.me/10330769/r

 

Generate your own stats.  

Edited by fog1234

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It's not unclear, you just don't like it! The way overwatch works is both realistic and cinematic. 

 

 

RAW Overwatch is a central mechanic.  Akin to aim, standard attack, or move when used properly.

 

 Statistics taken from players suggest that there is confusion.     

 

This thread suggests that there is confusion.

 

I do know what developer intent is now.  That's the only thing that has really changed.  

 

 

http://www.strawpoll.me/10330769/r

 

Generate your own stats.  

 

Fog I'm not trying to fight with  you! If my tone suggests otherwise I apologize! I know what RAW is. The fact that this keeps coming up is why I keep commenting and trying to educate people! That's what I mean by it's not unclear. Whenever this comes up some people seem to have the opinion that overwatch is either "Too good" or "Cannot be countered". Neither is true and one does not need Gm chicanery to do so!

 

Unfortunately, I have run into too many Gm's where there encounter setup involves the badguys charging down a hallway or across open areas. In these instances, Overwatch is and should be brutal! But there are other legitimate options to counter it. 

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Those are your opinions.  As you can see from the poll, it obviously isn't clear to some people.  As a result, folks either don't use it or don't try to use it.  

 

And you think it isn't overpowered; again, that's your opinion.  I certainly disagree with it, as Overwatch lets someone with a missile launcher or grenade launcher or bolt action rifle just keep shooting and shooting until they're out.  If you want to hose down a location, that's what Suppressing Fire should be for.  Your 'counters' can be countered in return or ignored in a number of cases.  

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Unfortunately, I have run into too many Gm's where there encounter setup involves the badguys charging down a hallway or across open areas. In these instances, Overwatch is and should be brutal! But there are other legitimate options to counter it. 

 

 

This is indeed a problem, and I wasn't trying to start a fight either.  It's more that there are certain limitations brought about by the nature of the game and logical inconsistencies caused by overwatch.  If I had a chance I'd have large XCOM scale maps for everything and macros for everything.  Often combat ends up quite claustrophobic. 

 

And you think it isn't overpowered; again, that's your opinion.  I certainly disagree with it, as Overwatch lets someone with a missile launcher or grenade launcher or bolt action rifle just keep shooting and shooting until they're out.  If you want to hose down a location, that's what Suppressing Fire should be for.  Your 'counters' can be countered in return or ignored in a number of cases.  

 

I believe the rocket launcher requires a reload between shots.  My terrible discovery recently though was that the flamer could be used in overwatch mode.

Edited by fog1234

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Unfortunately, I have run into too many Gm's where there encounter setup involves the badguys charging down a hallway or across open areas. In these instances, Overwatch is and should be brutal! But there are other legitimate options to counter it. 

 

 

This is indeed a problem, and I wasn't trying to start a fight either.  It's more that there are certain limitations brought about by the nature of the game and logical inconsistencies caused by overwatch.  If I had a chance I'd have large XCOM scale maps for everything and macros for everything.  Often combat ends up quite claustrophobic. 

 

And you think it isn't overpowered; again, that's your opinion.  I certainly disagree with it, as Overwatch lets someone with a missile launcher or grenade launcher or bolt action rifle just keep shooting and shooting until they're out.  If you want to hose down a location, that's what Suppressing Fire should be for.  Your 'counters' can be countered in return or ignored in a number of cases.  

 

I believe the rocket launcher requires a reload between shots.  My terrible discovery recently though was that the flamer could be used in overwatch mode.

 

`Miiraj, How can my counters be ignored in their appropriate circumstance?

 

Fog: If you watch some old WWII documentaries, you will find that flamers are often used that way. It's Icky!

BTW: Grenade launchers and frag missiles are fired at a target location, how exactly would this location "Trigger" overwatch. If you're talking Krak (AP) weapons, how is this any different from any other weapon?

Edited by Radwraith

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An easy example, dead-space earpieces and good quality photo-visors, or preysense goggles.  Smoke, stun and other grenade options that prevent Overwatch are ignored.  Recently in an Only War game I was in, the bad guys tried to lay down smoke grenades to conceal their position while putting down suppressive fire and charging at us.  We all had Preysense Goggles and started shooting them with pinpoint accuracy, dropping them like flies.  Only one person over-used Overwatch in that situation, thankfully.  

 

You can get an expanded magazine or backpack ammo supply for said missile launcher.  Or if it is vehicle-mounted.  There's definitely options.  

 

And there's nothing in the rules saying a person can't be your target location.  All Overwatch requires is that you specify what kind of attack you'll use, and what triggers you to use that attack.  And you can have multiple triggers.  As throwing/launching a grenade is a a Standard attack, that counts.  Provided you can draw grenades as a Free Action, you could do it by hand just as easily with a launcher.  

 

If you really want to break these rules down, consider the fact that a trigger could include an ally telling you to shoot.  Every time an ally tells you to shoot, you could do so, until you're out of ammunition.  

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And there's nothing in the rules saying a person can't be your target location.  All Overwatch requires is that you specify what kind of attack you'll use, and what triggers you to use that attack.  And you can have multiple triggers.  As throwing/launching a grenade is a a Standard attack, that counts.  Provided you can draw grenades as a Free Action, you could do it by hand just as easily with a launcher.  

Actually it DOES say exactly that!

 

overWatCh
Type: Full Action
Subtypes: Attack, Concentration, Ranged
The active character guards a specific area or target, poised to
shoot at an opportune moment. When Overwatch is declared, the
active character establishes a kill zone consisting of any general
area, such as a corridor or tree line, which encompasses a 45°
arc in the direction that the active character is facing. The active
character then specifies Standard Attack, Full Auto Burst, or
Semi-Auto Burst, along with the conditions under which he will
perform the chosen attack. Each any time the specified conditions
are met before the start of the character’s next turn, he can perform
that attack (so long as he is otherwise eligible to do so). This
attack occurs the moment the condition is met, such as an enemy
entering the kill zone.
 
Note that the rule specifies a kill zone and a triggering action. A grenade while the player may throw/fire the grenade at a person, they are actually targeting an Impact point! Since said impact point cannot trigger anything the Gm COULD legitimately disallow the action. I'm not saying you have to, but you could! I assume you're talking about dealing with "That Guy" (The rules lawyer) who wants to abuse overwatch! While I rarely have to deal with it in my current groups, when I have I do it with the same kind of rules parcing they are useing.
 
As to your example: My examples were deliberately at a very basic level for early tier Acolytes. If your players are high enough level to have all the fancy toys, than at least some of their enemies will too! For example, if your bada$$ group takes out whole squads of thugs with a grenade launcher, (A definitively unsubtle action!) maybe the next group uses hidden snipers and Mortar fire to get your attention!
 
My point is still valid: Gm's must be aware of their group's capabilities! Both as players and and their characters! Certainly not every encounter should be a white knuckled excersize in terror BUT; every now and then the Bloodthirster needs to remind the acolytes that "they are but mortal after all"! One of the best ways to do that is to understand the rules of the game you are playing at least as well as the rules lawyer thinks he does!

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And I think a GM could not legitimately disallow the action by rules as written.  It explicitly says the person makes an attack (throwing a grenade is an attack) when the trigger is activated.  It says nothing about having to target that one guy in particular (even if you want to argue that they aren't at a location, which they are).  I could easily go 'whenever someone goes through that door, I throw a grenade at the doorway' and it works just as well.  

 

I don't have anyone in the game I run abusing Overwatch (and I explicitly explained the rules and fixed them at my table when I thought they would come up, instead of letting someone see it, try it and go 'nuh uh, I don't like that'), though other games are another matter.  It doesn't really factor into the discussion as to whether or not Overwatch is broken.  I can see something is wrong and want to fix it without it being used against me first.  

 

To continue, the consequences of using a grenade launcher in-game have no impact on the mechanical validity of Overwatch.  

 

Your point definitely hasn't been 'GMs should be aware of their player's capabilities,' the point you've said so far is 'Overwatch isn't overpowered,' which is definitely up for debate.  

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 As throwing/launching a grenade is a a Standard attack, that counts.  Provided you can draw grenades as a Free Action, you could do it by hand just as easily with a launcher.  

 

I'm not certain if it's RAW or not but I've always treated Free Actions as only being possible on your own turn. While it's not hard to get something that allows you to draw grenades as a Free Action, I would explicitly disallow the possibility of quick drawing grenades as part of Overwatch. I also forbid Free Action reloads as part of Overwatch because then it just gets cheesy. Get the ammo backpack if you want to fire as much as you want.

 

Note that the rule specifies a kill zone and a triggering action. A grenade while the player may throw/fire the grenade at a person, they are actually targeting an Impact point! Since said impact point cannot trigger anything the Gm COULD legitimately disallow the action.

 

Extrapolating this idea means that Overwatch would never trigger at all as Overwatch always requires the establishment of a kill zone. Even a simple "shoot anyone who comes through that door" Overwatch defines your 'impact point' as the area immediately after the door and the trigger conditions as whenever someone strolls through. I don't see any reason why a gun and a grenade would be treated differently when it comes to Overwatch. Heck, if a player decided to plant explosives on a location and have their Overwatch be "shoot the explosive when x number of enemies are within its blast zone" I'd be inclined to allow it. Overwatch does say you can guard a specific area or target so I don't see any reason why you would not be able to choose a specific object or location provided the trigger condition was met.

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The logic to disallow is a bit convoluted so I'll concede the point. MijRaj is right though, I don't think overwatch is overpowered. I think it could potentially be overused, and abused if gm's are not aware of it's limitations. The inability to use supporting actions, such as aim, ready and reload are among them. Also, Overwatch is a full round action in and of itself, so you can't move, brace a weapon or any other action the round you declare overwatch.

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