It's been awhile since I posted, so I thought it was high time I devoted some time to another tactical discussion of the Gunfighter's Ball rules.
SHORT RANGE FIRE EFFECTIVENESS
I've watched players get frustrated as they close into short range, but still end up with a 20% chance to hit. These players have discovered the challenge that arises in any wargame as you try to conduct offensive fire on the move. Whether you have tanks, cowboys, or sci-fi armies, the same puzzle must be solved!
|"In Without Knocking" by Charles Russell.|
|Photo courtesy Gary Harding.|
So how do you solve this problem?
1. One way is to utilize cover. If Wild Bill is in the saloon and you're tasked with attacking him, then you would be committing suicide by moving to the door of the saloon and then firing on your second action. It would be far better to take up a position behind the horses at the hitching rail and patiently awaiting his turn. If he wants to fire at you, he will be faced with either shooting through the good cover of the horses or moving to get to you, losing fire effectiveness.
2. Think like a soldier; use characters in concert with one another. Post one figure in cover to engage the enemy from the front and send a second character around to attack from the flank or rear.
3. Watch for the golden ticket: if your opponent takes a quickdraw, that leaves him vulnerable until he has paid for it with a missed turn. During that window of opportunity, you can shoot without fear of a quickdraw response. Stand still, take your first action to aim, and take as many shots as your weapon allows on the second action. If your character has special marksmanship bonuses, go ahead and take a called shot! This approach is what Wyatt Earp called "taking your time, but doing it quickly."
3. In spite of all of the challenges of moving in for the kill, playing offensively makes for a far better game than sheltering in place and hoping for the best as some players seem to want to do. Did you ever wonder why the only restriction on choosing actions is the inability to move after firing in a turn? This was a game-design decision to keep action lively and keep people from hiding after every shot; can you imagine what kind of game that would be? Be bold; there are no tin widows!
|Photo courtesy Ivor Janci.|