The developers discuss that the order of the turn is normally established at the beginning of a combat round by rolling the initiative of all the combatants. This number is a die roll added to the speed of a given character. They don’t show this order anywhere to keep things a little more hidden and harder to predict at the start of the fight. Cirque, however, brings a completely new initiative mechanism.
At the start of a match, a coin will be thrown, with the winner being the first to act. Obviously, getting the first round in a turn-based strategy game is a powerful advantage and limiting it to a simple 50/50 game of chance may be a little too chaotic, but the losers and the unlucky have not to fear; while the winner gets the first round, the loser gets a team-wide buff for the first round.Red Hook Studios Discusses Major Changes Coming With Addition Of Upcoming Butcher’s Circus DLC
The first player can choose which of their heroes will act first rather than relying on an initiative system. After this decision, the game passes to the other player, who will then make the same choice. The action will continue to alternate back and forth as players choose which of their heroes will act in what order until each hero has acted, which will then start a new round.
“This new mechanism introduces a huge new layer of decision-making in combat,” write the developers, discussing their desire to remove the RNG from the system. “It creates an interesting dynamic for the cat and the mouse during the first half of the match as you try to foil and activate your chosen strategy while interrupting your opponents.”