• Welcome to this new upgrade of the site. We are now on a totally different software platform. Many things will be different, and bugs are expected. Certain areas (like downloads and reviews) will take longer to import. As always, please use the Meta Forum for site queries or bug reports. Note that we (the mods and admins) are also learning the new software.
  • The RSS feed for the news page has changed. Use this link. The old one displays the forums, not the news.

Concurrent Initiative in PF2e


I really liked Hemlocks idea of concurrent initiative he describes in this thread:

Do you think this works in PF2e? I think the 3 action economy has solved some of the problems with cyclic initiative, i.e. players getting uncreative about what they do in the "combat minigame". But I still don't like the cyclical approach too much, it just feels very "gamey".
What other ways could there be to create a more chaotic combat cinemeatic experience, while still utilizing the awesome combat rules of PF2?

I am interested in your suggestions.


Orcus on a bad day
Everyone rolls initiative once. Each round everyone declares*. If you are using less than 3 actions this turn, you get a boost to your initiative for this turn only. Breaks out of cyclic while still keeping one action per actor, and people who are doing less get it done faster.

Perhaps even allow taking a fourth action, but with a permanent reduction in initiative and if it goes to 0 or below they don't get an action that round, and reroll initiative for next.

(* Declairing can be whatever the DM wants, from specific things to just "I'm using 2 actions").


You really will want to begin by answering the question:

Why do I want to change the system and what do I want to get out of my initiative system?

Otherwise it's impossible to offer constructive suggestions.

PS. I started reading the first post in your link, and immediately saw this:

"I abandoned cyclic initiative almost as soon as I started running my own 5E games; you don't need to roll initiative every round at all."

But you don't roll initiative every round in cyclic initiative. That's why it's called cyclic.


Relaxed Intensity
An important part of how players engage the combat mechanics skillfully depends on effects that end on start of turns or the end of turns and careful management of reactions. When you choose to use a reaction part of the calculus is that there would be other opportunities to do so that you might miss out on. There are also a whole host of ways in which we might use combat maneuvers to set something up for another player to take advantage of.