So there you are, locked in combat with a non-copyrighted Ocular Tyrant, when your buddy the catfolk starts with this malarkey. You know how deadly Ocular Tyrants can be. You know that it’s going to take the full resources of the team to get through this thing in once piece. But Derp the Cat is busy having a private little RP moment, and you’re staring down the barrel of perma-death disintegration. What do you do? 

This issue remains unresolved for me. On the one hand, I like the idea that RP doesn’t stop when combat starts. You can still characterize your guy through the actions he takes in the heat of battle, and those can be some of the most memorable. Saving the falling baby rather than punching the dragon, fighting defensively when faced with phobia-inducing opponents, or relying upon your character’s favored weapon rather than a more effective combat strategy can all be interesting character choices. But getting your buddies killed so that you can wallow in what-my-character-would-do is a tough decision to make.

What do you guys think? Do you prefer to keep combat and characterization in two separate little worlds, or do you try to combine the two? And if you do combine them, how far do you take it? When is it your responsibility to be a tactically smart team player, and when do you have the leeway to play with frickin laser beams, so to speak? Let’s hear it in the comments!