Time and Actions
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Though the gamemaster is responsible for managing the speed at which events unfold, there are times when it is important to know exactly who is acting when, especially if some people are acting before or after other people. In these circumstances, gameplay in Eclipse Phase is broken down into intervals called Action Turns.
Each Action Turn is three seconds long, meaning there are twenty Action Turns per minute. The order in which characters act during a turn is determined by an Initiative Test (see Initiative). Action Turns are further subdivided into Action Phases. Each character’s Speed stat determines the amount of actions they can take in a turn, represented by how many Action Phases they may take.
Types of Actions
The types of actions a character may take in an Action Turn are broken down to: Automatic, Quick, Complex, and Task actions.
Automatic actions are “always on” and require no effort from the character, assuming they are conscious. Examples: basic perception, certain psi sleights
Quick actions are simple, so they can be done fast and can be multi-tasked. The gamemaster determines how many Quick actions a character may take in a turn. Examples: talking, switching a safety, activating an implant, standing up.
Complex actions require concentration or effort. The number of Complex actions a character may take per turn is determined by their Speed stat.
Examples: attacking, shooting, acrobatics, disarming a bomb, detailed examination.
Task actions are any actions that require longer than one Action Turn to complete. Each Task action has a timeframe, usually listed in the task description or otherwise determined by the gamemaster. The timeframe determines how long the task takes to complete, though this may be reduced by 10 percent for every 10 full points of MoS the character scores on the test (see Margin of Success/Failure). If a character fails on a Task action test roll, they work on the task for a minimum period equal to 10 percent of the timeframe for each 10 full points of MoF before realizing it’s a failure. For Task actions with timeframes of one day or longer, it is assumed that the character only works eight hours per day. A character that works more hours per day may reduce the time accordingly. Characters working on Task actions may also interrupt their work to do something else and then pick up where they left off, unless the gamemaster rules that the action requires continuous and uninterrupted attention.
Similar to taking the time, a character may rush the job on a Task action, taking a penalty on the test in order to decrease the timeframe. The character must declare they are rushing the job before they roll the test. For every 10 percent they wish to reduce the timeframe, they incur a –10 modifier on the test (to a maximum reduction of 60 percent with a maximum modifier of –60)