While very often we make an effort to make the RPG experience fluid and “natural”, these games offer us the opportunity to to zoom in on each individual frame of the action. This phenomenon allows us a different experience than other types of creative endeavors.
Preferences for the degree of detail and complexity of things like combat, but however it is handled, an RPG allows us to focus on individual actions, conflicts, and decisions. We can address the situation frame by frame, making decisions and resolving conflicts no matter what the scale.
Most games allow us to focus in on other moments of the fiction as well, stopping time to consider the moment in the frame, making decisions in moments of conflict and tension.
One doesn’t have to be particularly astute to realize that most of the moments where we consider individual frames is when the system asserts itself. However, we can also choose to examine a moment independent of the mechanics.
I like the experience to run as seamlessly as possible with few interruptions, but sometimes the best thing you can do is take a moment to stop and look at the frame in the moment.