Well, both Far Cry 2 and Crysis had snipers, and I thought it was implemented very well in both cases. It could be very difficult to find them and sometimes you would die before finding cover. Especially since you often didn't even know what direction the shots were coming from and so found cover on the wrong side of the sniper. I'm not sure why turn based combat would change the mechanics of it so much. Instead of being shot multiple times in quick succession as would occur in real time, you would have a certain number of action points or other time units to make it to cover or to scan the horizon with a long range scope of some kind.
I also don't see why a sniper would have to instakill someone before the party had a chance to seek cover. Do snipers get headshots 100% of the time from a great distance, despite wind and gravity effects on the bullets? I don't think so. Especially since there is no reason to assume that the party members would be standing perfectly still.
And how do you want to implement that? Random encounter, somewhere on the map, all of a sudden there's a sniper in the middle of nowhere, complete with a few conveniently placed sandbags for your party to take cover
No sandbags, but you might have some kind of natural cover like building ruins or hills or boulders within running distance. I think the encounters in Far Cry 2 were scripted and the snipers were located at the same point every time. They were usually just guys with a sniper rifle who were part of a larger party and who were busy scanning the horizon for targets. Will party members sometimes get killed by snipers? Well I certainly hope so. That's what makes it fun and challenging.
I'm not sure what you mean by "all of a sudden". The sniper is there with the rest of his party, on lookout, watching the horizon with his targeting scope. He might be inside a building as in The Hurt Locker or maybe just crouching behind a distant sand dune or hill or on top of a large boulder in the distance. He sees your ranger party and slowly, carefully, takes aim. It is difficult because your party is moving, but he tracks one of your party and finally squeezes the trigger. Your party then runs for cover, possibly dragging the wounded party member along with you.
In a turn based system this would all be happening within the constraints of fixed, alternating segments of time. You can use your time slots to make a run for cover depending on how far away it is or to try to scan for the sniper and return fire.
I don't see why the mechanic has to be limited to settlements. The wasteland is a dangerous place and sniper rifles were around long before The Terrible Events.
SkyFyre wrote:When I'm thinking about things like this I think about my tabletop RPG group and how it would work out if while I was GMing I pulled something like this.
Is it realistic? Could be, yeah.
Is it fair? No, not really.
Is it fun? No.
Actually it is perfectly fair. If one of your party has a sniper rifle he is free to stop and scan the horizon for enemies from time to time to see if there are any sniping opportunities. And we'll just have to disagree about the fun part. I think it is great fun both as the sniper and as the target. Obviously a PnP implementation would be a quite different setup. Just like checking for traps a high perception party member might tell the DM that he wants to stop and scan for snipers and the results would depend on a die roll and the character's perception skill (or whatever). Do you think D&D traps are unfair too?
SkyFyre wrote:You've got someone who's sniping out at what? 200m? You want it to be random out in the middle of nowhere? My players would throw a fit. By the time they get into a firing position, locate the sniper, and return fire (if there's anyone in the group who even has that skill set) they're all dead.
Why are they all dead? Because the distant sniper has a perception skill of 100 and all your party members stand still like perfect targets? Give me a break. It's not easy to hit a target a half mile or more away, especially if it's moving. You don't have to make it impossible to find the sniper. That's your choice as game master, but it isn't inevitable. And if everyone does die then maybe next time they'll be sure to invest more in the distant perception skill.
SkyFyre wrote:Basically it's conditionally acceptable (provide enough cover, let the sniper miss his first shot...etc) but even then, how do you play that out in this turn based style? You could have a sniper out as far as 1000m, but even 200m is going to be hard to implement into the turn based combat system without killing the player with boredom.
The only difference between turn based and real time is that turns are explicit and time is broken up into discrete slots. Instead of depending on twitch mechanics time slows down so that you can ponder difficult strategies. In this case the choice is whether to run for cover or use some evasion combined with scanning the horizon. Perhaps there should be some option for not standing still. For moving around a bit to make it more difficult for the sniper while still having enough time units to spend some time scanning the horizon for the target. A character with a high noise perception skill might even be able to narrow down the direction straightaway. Or you might interpret any movement at all as a moving target instead of a fixed one. Even if the target only moves a single time unit. You could make difficulty to hit proportional to the number of time units the target has moved in their turn. Or something like that.
suz wrote:Having a sniper make an ambush means someone from the party is going to be dead by the time someone hears bullet sound. So as far as the "fun" part goes, that'll suck. And the rest of the party will follow soon after as most methods described in the article aren't really applicable.
How do you figure that a party member will be dead? One will probably at least be wounded, but snipers aren't perfect. They can miss entirely. If they get lucky then yes one of your party will die. The wasteland is a dangerous place. If your party of rangers can't handle that then maybe they should not venture out at all and stay where it is relatively safe.
BentSea wrote:The very idea reminds me of the incredibly awful sniper town in Medal of Honor, whatever the one was that had the famous storming of the beach level.
Never played MoH. Why was the sniper "awful"? I've never met a sniper that I didn't like. I loved that mechanic in Far Cry 2. Just thinking about it makes me want to replay it. IMO, if you don't want to be a sniper target then sniper rifles should not be available for you either. Fair is fair. I hate games where one side has an unfair advantage.
Drool wrote:What was the body count in that scene? 5? 6? Not counting the fact that they were also dying of thirst...
Actually I think only 2 people died before they actually found the sniper and took cover. Fiennes was killed while he was targeting the other sniper with his
sniper rifle. That was a completely fair kill. Both sides could see and hit the other. Fieness missed. The other guy didn't. The second early kill was the guy shooting wild on the truck mounted machine gun, which was a very stupid thing to do. He should have sought cover like everyone else and then made decisions about where to shoot. Also no one died of thirst in the scene they were just parched because of all the dust. They had drinks there.
Drool wrote:Seems a little excessive, mainly for the reasons listed by other people, especially since you're not going to know a sniper's there until someone's head explodes.
You can be surprised in a regular ambush too. Where someone is just hiding in the shadows somewhere at night and takes a head shot at your best ranger and hits and kills. Again, if you don't want sniping in the game then no sniper rifle should be available to the player either. No long distance combat at all. Fair is fair. I'm not sure why everyone is just assuming that every shot a sniper takes is a successful one shot kill, but whatever.
Drool wrote:The original Wasteland had some "snipers" under the Temple of Blood, but they were just normal foes shooting from a hidden vantage point.
And that is different from an enemy party with a sniper rifle how exactly? I'm talking about "normal foes".
Incidentally, Full Metal Jacket and Band of Brothers also both had good sniper scenes. I think sniping is a fun game mechanic. As a general rule things that make combat more difficult and tense are good. Things that make it easier are bad.