At what point or degree of such disconnection does the whole thing become farcical, though.I haven't chimed in yet, but I fundamentally disagree with you here. While I'm in no way suggesting that the mechanics are perfect (they are what they are), they don't need to be fixed if one understands that the mechanics and the fiction only loosely line up. Or to look at it anther way, they line up fine if you don't try to force them to a rigid connection.
Where I'm arguing, I suppose, almost the opposite: that those who rely on mechanics first are the ones perhaps lacking in imagination, in that they're not visualizing the scene completely and seeing how the mechanics and the fiction disagree.Charlie and the Orc fight their way across the room. At some point there's a gap big enough for Alpha to shoot an arrow (without penalty) and Beta to blow up a fireball (as Charlie heroically rushes into the backdraft, perhaps getting a little singed, but not enough for any damage).
I would argue that we know these things happen this way because that's what the mechanics tell us happens. I would never want to accuse anyone who plays D&D of lacking imagination, but I swear, when I hear the argument that some scenario or another doesn't seem "realistic" (or whatever), I always feel like someone is lacking imagination. (I am not accusing you of this here).
Yes, these has to be some abstraction. But when that abstraction goes too far, there's no point left in trying to imagine anything because the abstraction won't agree.
Exactly my point! Why would we allow the mechanics to force us into nonsensical narration?We can make up any story we like! Why would we chose to make one that doesn't make sense?