It is somewhat of an irony that what would take hours or days in real life takes moments in a gaming session, while something that would take mere moments can take hours to play out. Traveling across a vast wilderness takes a couple of random encounter checks, but a combat can take hours to conduct.
So to make a fast combat system the less rules the better, but that sacrifices all nuance. The more detail and variation in the system the longer the combats are going to take. For that reason I've never favored complex combat systems and it was probably the #1 turnoff of 4th Edition for me.
In designing the combat system for On The Arizona Hills (Gunslinger) I looked to one of the best under appreciated combat systems: Boothill. From its war game roots, Gygax and Blume created streamlined yet detailed gunfighting rules. While 3rd edition is probably my favorite as it is a genuine fleshed out RPG, it is the 1st edition that is the most interesting for the purposes of borrowing ideas here as it comes from the same period and stew of ideas as the original LBB.
This is an effort to translate that system into original ODD compatible mechanics.
The First Shot
In western gunfights the victory often goes to whoever draws and fires first. Sometimes that comes down to not only speed (the DEX bonus) but also using the handier weapon and circumstances.
Use the normal combat rules, but with individual initiative.
Before rolling for attack, characters on both sides may optionally declare if they’re using one these attacks or defensive options: Hip Shooting, Rushing, Running, Evading, or Careful Aim, as these affect the First Shot chart. You can also take an “ordinary shot” in which case there’s no modifier.
Aim or Careful Aim means you’re sacrificing speed for accuracy.
Rushing (a quick attack) or Hip Shooting (even faster) means you’re trading accuracy for speed.
Running or Evading (zig-zagging, etc.) boosts your Armor Class at the expense of accuracy and speed.
If you are surprised, or your weapon is not already in your hands, you have an additional penalty to speed as you must draw it from the holster or unsling it.
Each player’s d6 initiative roll is modified by their Dexterity modifier and Weapon’s Speed factor (see the Ranged Weapon Table) and any appropriate bonuses and penalties shown on the FIRST SHOT CHART.
Do this for each figure firing that turn. The one with the highest positive total fires first, with other figures firing in order thereafter. In case of ties fire is considered as taking place simultaneously with regard to the figures whose total scores were tied.
Use the information on the FIRST SHOT CHART as a guide for other factors not listed.
Hit Location and Wounds
If a hit is to a limb, it’s just a flesh wound unless the attack causes the character to lose half or more of his CURRENT hit points. For instance, if he had only 3 hp left, then any hit that makes him lose 2 or more hp cripples the limb.
If a limb is an arm that is holding a weapon, the character drops it. They cannot use that arm/hand for shooting or combat until they recover back to full hp.
A crippled leg reduces movement by half, and eliminates any DEX bonus when trying actions that require physical agility. If both legs are crippled the character can only crawl at 3” and can’t do anything that requires physical agility. Again, they must recover to full hp and care from a Doctor to regain the use of the limb.