I don’t say this often, but she’s fucked. If you’re wanting to take the
aggressive way out, and she will die in the attempt. There are ways to get a
character out of a situation like this, but with the scenario you’re
presenting, violence is not one of them.
Training is not the power to overcome all fights through superlative skill;
it’s the ability to know there are some fights you cannot win, and assess the
best way to avoid those in the first place, or escape, if it comes to that. 2v1
is already horrifically difficult. Giving them guns makes this (basically)
You’re not specifying what kind of weapons they’re using, and this is
probably kind of important to know for your own purposes.
Machine gun can refer to (nearly) any automatic firearm. You pull the
trigger, and it will continue firing until you release it, the ammunition is
spent, or the weapon malfunctions (which is fairly rare in most cases).
This can range from fully automatic pistols, up through heavy weapons you’d
mount on a vehicle. You’re probably thinking of assault rifles or submachine
guns, since they’re easily portable. SMGs are chambered to fire pistol rounds,
while assault rifles are simply, fully automatic rifles (using lighter rifle
Usually the term is used to refer to heavier automatic weapons, designed to
suppress enemy movement and make returning fire more difficult. The entire idea
is you put a lot of flying lead, and the threat of more following it, in the
general vicinity of your foes, and they cannot move or return fire without
being reduced to goulash.
Thing is, that basic strategy does apply to nearly all fully automatic
weapons. The only difference is how much ammunition they can draw on, how far
it can fire, and how gleefully it can tear apart concealment (we’ll come back
to this in a second).
Put another way, the entire point of this weapon is to force enemies to stay
in cover and not move, while the rest of your forces to better positions, so
they can take them out.
If they stick anything out of cover, your machine gunner is waiting to blow
it off. To a lesser extent, this is how all gunfights work. If you’re not
shooting someone directly, you’re trying to keep their head down, so you, or
your allies, can get into a better position to kill them.
Getting caught outside of cover against a competent gunner is a death
sentence. They’re in position, they’re waiting, out you come, down you go.
For an unarmed character, there is no counter. Keep to cover, keep moving
and get away, are the only real options, but with almost nowhere to take cover,
that option’s gone.
It gets worse. Concealment is not cover. Cover is something that will
protect you from incoming fire. Concealment is something that will hide you
from the enemy. What this means is, TV, movies, and video games have lied to
you. Bullets will easily punch through many objects. Including furniture, walls,
ceilings, floors, cars, self-sacrificial idiots leaping into the path of the
bullet. Taking cover behind a wooden shipping crate will only protect you if
the stuff inside that crate is solid enough to stop a bullet. Ducking behind a
wall, unless that wall is made out of concrete, won’t do much.
And, that’s not even an answer to your question. Gun disarms will get you shot. I’m going to keep saying this. Under
the best circumstances, with excellent training, gun disarms are incredibly dangerous to the
practitioner. You use them because they were going to kill you anyway, and you
didn’t have another option.
Even when you’re dealing with handgun disarms, it’s incredibly easy to take
a bullet mid-disarm, particularly if the shooter is using a stance the martial
artist isn’t prepared for. Rifle disarms are a nightmare to pull off.
Stuntmen can make them look really cool, and when you’ve got two people
cooperating disarms can be very fun to watch. But, that’s entertainment,
actually trying to execute disarms in the field is for the supremely
foolish and those who were already two seconds away from death.
So, back to the beginning, how does your character get out of a situation
like this? Not getting into it in the first place is a good option. Making sure
they have an escape plan is a second.
If your character gets a phone call to take them out to some abandoned
warehouse, or construction site, or farm in upstate New York… maybe they
shouldn’t go. Or at least not alone. There are rare situations where a
character would have a legitimate reason to walk into a trap like that, but
under normal circumstances, situations like that demand your characters come up
with ways that mitigate the risk.
There’s a real habit of having characters doing stupid things because the
power of plot compels them. At some point, the justifications like, “if you bring
anyone with you; the kid dies,” got lost, and we’re left with characters
walking into very bad situations.
Even if, “the kid dies,” that doesn’t mean your character should be
following instructions, or plunging into dangerous situations without setting
At this point it’s worth considering, with hostages, if the villain is
planning to kill your character, then that’s all they need the hostage for, and
once you’re character’s down they’re going to be next. On reflection, that’s
not a really great reason to be following the rules, is it?
Having a contingency plan doesn’t mean bringing buddies or gearing up. Sometimes
it means finding ways to exploit the restrictions placed on your character.
Armed attackers planning to murder you? Find a crowd. A couple mooks might be
willing to take their chances gunning you down in an alley, but are they really
going to risk opening up in a crowded bar?
Even if your character does need to go into someplace they really shouldn’t.
They need to have an escape plan, if things go wrong. That could be as simple
as making sure they have a way out of the building they’re in, or it could be
more complex, such as having allies who will come in if the situation goes
wrong. In a situation like this, it might be as simple as remaining undetected
until she can escape.
Regardless, saving a character from a situation like this, usually means not
getting into it in the first place. I understand it, you have characters that
need to go someplace for the story to progress. That’s fine. But, your
characters do need to plan ahead, and assess their situation to the best of
Someone or something told those guys to drop by. Maybe there were there
ahead of time, in which case she needed to know where they were, and keep track
of them before going in. Maybe she tripped an alarm, and they got called in
behind her, so now she needs to find a way out, without them actually spotting
and killing her. Maybe someone called them in to kill her, in which case,
again, she needs to avoid detection and get away.
Ideally you need a way for them to overcome their foes. Note, “overcome,”
not, “defeat.” In a situation like this, the best solution to overcome a hit
squad sent after your character is going to be to escape, not to fight them
head on and die. Find an opening, make an escape. Don’t get tied up in hand to
hand with someone using an automatic rifle, only for his buddy to drill your
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