Jump to content
Cheeech

Running chases with multiple characters on each side

Recommended Posts

 I understand the chase rules when the PCs are chasing/being chased by 1 NPC - make the appropriate check, and move the PCs towards/away from the NPC, depending on whether they beat the  NPC result.

But I can't get my head around how chases work when there are  multiple PCs chasing/being chased by multiple  NPCs (on foot, or in separate ships).  everyone  makes their check, and then what? How do you work out how to adjust  everyone's relative positions?

 

Thanks,

Cheech

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For a direct "everybody can still see each other" type of chase, it's simpler to collapse the NPC pools into one...nominate a leader or the best candidate for their pool, and the PCs roll against that.

But if you had two separate NPC groups that aren't working together--say Imperials who want to arrest them, and bounty hunters who want to silence them--I would have the PCs roll their pool once, and then each NPC group roll their pool separately.  The PC pool is then compared to each NPC pool in turn to get a result for that NPC group's relative progress.

Or you could just have the PCs roll multiple times, once for each chasing element.  Really, a lot depends on the scenario.  The chase mechanic is useful in a variety of situations, not just counting range bands.  PCs could use a variety of skills, including social and knowledge skills, to increase their relative distance between pursuers...in those cases I'd have them roll against the most likely NPC.  Eg:  the PCs decide to head for the ghetto "because my PC is from there, and his Streetwise is pretty good".  Well, this might be bounty hunter territory too.  Meanwhile the Imperials don't want to go into the ghetto, so they work on blocking all the exits.  In the ghetto they have to out maneuver the bounty hunters.  Getting out of the ghetto they have to outmaneuver the Imperials.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks whafrog. So the  way to run a chase with more  than 1 character on  each side  is to treat  everyone  on 1 side  as a single  character?

That wouldn't work very well for what I want to do. I might ditch the  chase  rules, and have number of successes represent distance  travelled  (measured in range  bands). Or I might decide  the  whole  thing's too complicated, and ditch this chase  altogether

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm with Whafrog, broadly - a group check for each side, and treat everything else narratively.

Sure, one character might realistically be ahead of the rest of their party, and one further behind, but the point of this system (arguably the point of any system) is not to attempt to perfectly recreate real life via the medium of dice - it's to provide a framework of character success/failure around which a story can be told.  If your characters do something like split up to cut off their quarry, or try to distract their pursuers, or something, then maybe they get a Boost die or two for their creative thinking, and then resolve what effect this has narratively.

 

Within RAW, the only real unresolved issue is what Speed/Silhouette to use if different members of the party are in different vehicles, which is important especially when travelling through difficult terrain.  I tend to go with Silhouette = largest silhouette in the party, and Speed = EITHER the highest speed of the fastest vehicle in the party OR the maximum speed of the slowest vehicle (whichever is lower).

 

Having said all that, if the chase rules aren't working for you for a particular reason, don't use them.  They're not perfect for every situation, and there might be a better option in this case.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
9 hours ago, Cheeech said:

Thanks whafrog. So the  way to run a chase with more  than 1 character on  each side  is to treat  everyone  on 1 side  as a single  character?

Well, it's "a" way, not necessarily "the" way.  I don't think I've run two chases the same way the whole time I've been GMing this game.  What I try to keep in mind is:

1. keep things moving.  Don't dwell on the minutia, and take narrative shortcuts when necessary.  A chase doesn't have to use the same time intervals as combat, though it could if you wanted to.

2. change the terrain.  I generally spend no more than a round or maybe two in a specific location.  Canyons give way to forests; upscale shopping turns into slums; etc.

3. give everybody something to do.  I generally rotate through the PCs, so when somebody's turn comes up I'll ask "how are you going to help get everybody out of this?"  The face/scholar should be able to contribute something:  deception to create a diversion; leadership or negotiation or charm to arrange a "I saw them go that-a-way" with the locals; etc.  This means everybody gets a turn, and PCs can assist each other.

But those are just my own guidelines, I break those rules too...

 

9 hours ago, Cheeech said:

That wouldn't work very well for what I want to do. I might ditch the  chase  rules, and have number of successes represent distance  travelled  (measured in range  bands). Or I might decide  the  whole  thing's too complicated, and ditch this chase  altogether

Maybe you can explain in more detail what it is you want to do?  What's at stake?  What is the terrain like?  Do you want the players to succeed, and do you have a backup plan for if some or all fail?  If it's just a race from the 50-yard line to the end zone, then I'd have everybody (including each relevant NPC or minion group) roll their own pool (probably Athletics) once and be done.  This means anybody with poor Athletics will likely lose.

Edited by whafrog

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, whafrog said:

Maybe you can explain in more detail what it is you want to do?  What's at stake?  What is the terrain like?  Do you want the players to succeed, and do you have a backup plan for if some or all fail?  If it's just a race from the 50-yard line to the end zone, then I'd have everybody (including each relevant NPC or minion group) roll their own pool (probably Athletics) once and be done.  This means anybody with poor Athletics will likely lose.

This could come up in a game I'm running on Saturday (but probably won't). The situation would be the PCs are trying to take out a minor crime boss in her hideout, and if things look bad for her, she'll attempt to flee down the tunnels (which the PCs may or may not already know about). Presumably the PCs will give chase, and any of her remaining lackeys will then give chase to the PCs.

I could split the PCs into 2 groups - 1 to hold off the lackeys, and the other to chase the boss. That might work better - only thought of it as I was typing

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Basically you need to set a point of reference. Usually one of the participants;

The vehicle all the PC's are in. 

The Nemesis getting away.

The cop on foot chasing the PC's.

Although it can be a physical place, effectively the finish line. But in this case I set a specific number of success as the "end", whoever gets that total first wins.

 

Then to run the Chase every other participant moves individually relative to the reference character. This way you can effectively have NPC's and PC's chasing a single NPC at the same time. If the chase splits up because the quarry splits somehow (eg a PC leaps from a moving vehicle onto a rooftop) then you create an entirely separate chase, with separate participants in each and setting a new "reference character" for the new chase.

 

As far as actually representing the chase I find it easiest to lay it out in a line on the table. Put the reference in the relevant position (in front, middle or back of the chase) then lay down all the other participants with gaps between for each range band away from the reference. The reference NEVER moves on the table, instead everything else is moved relevant to it depending on the outcome of the checks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not to thread-hijack too much, but we had a brief TIE chase in our game last night.  The PC was very interested in escaping with his stolen TIE-Advanced and trying to lose the pursuit in some canyons and ravines.  I decided to borrower a mechanic from the Traveller rules (which I can't recall the name of) which basically allows one of the contestants to set the challenge level.  I think it's called "Follow if you can!" or something like that...think of Han's flight through the asteroids with the TIEs chasing them..."They'd be crazy to follow us, wouldn't they?"

The challenger sets the pool for everybody, and each participant rolls against it.  So the player picked CDDD (1 red, 3 purples), which I flipped a DP to turn to CCDD just for his pool.  He got a healthy success and a Triumph, while the following minion TIEs managed a failure, a Despair, and a Triumph.  So they got a parting shot at him, but in their eagerness a couple ended up as fireballs on the canyon walls.  The Triumph allowed him to get away clean while the others went the wrong way trying to avoid their fellows' debris.

It was a fun epic moment in the game, but the main point of the post is that you can run chases in this game in a lot of different ways.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...