Almost all RPGs are focused entirely upon combat, even the ones were there is an attempt to develop internal politics and other non-violent means of conflict resolution, still the inevitable fighting mechanic forms the central core of the game and must be detailed. As these are games and as players are conditioned to play to win, so the swiftest resolution is always with combat and a few dice rolls, "bang bang, you're dead"... "but I built my character with debating skills"... "my character has an M14 rifle and shoots your character in the brain stem. Game over."
Perhaps it's simply the fact that RPGs have developed from war games, perhaps it's the way we play games, perhaps it's our violent natures.
In any case I can imagine that a game or story that did not involve either actual violence (action) of the threat of violence (horror) to be dismissed as 'boring' or 'not realistic'. Let's be clear though, my game/story world is not a passifist utopia.
Not to remove the reality of violence, but that as a story mechanic it's use should not be without danger or consequence, the use of violence is rarely a solution, as it merely creates the potential for other worse situations. The cycle of violence, revenge, permanent injury, the loss of one's identity to that of a corrupt 'other place' (cf. Lynch). Much like magick is this world's literal depiction of the corruption of power, of influence, so that violence here should also be extreme with the possibility of perma-death (what other kind should we think of?), of physical damage (although fixable by magick, this too lends itself to risk), or of mental-spiritual damage, leading to becoming feral, a lesser animalistic being.
That is, if we consider violence as an animal instict and therefore basic or innate, should it be feared or controlled or denied or embraced?
Perhaps something we should watch for is the trivilising of this attitude, or the domestication or even the gamification of violence. This is because it can help manufacture the idea that this is what we really are. It makes the assumption through it's repeated use in games and stories that violence is basic is innate is true to what we are. The argument of its inescapability meaning that we must embrace this lust for violence, but this sadistic pleasure in causing pain, in 'getting back', in solution (because surely when they are all dead there can be no more problems), is a social construct, it is the argument of authoritarianism, of Fascism, of the sociopath.
The animal does not love violence.
Innate does not mean always, it is appropriate only with the context. The hawk does not kill without 'reason'.
So, this isn't to disparage those that enjoy the combat aspect of their games. Indeed, as I said, it's obviously a key component for most games for a reason. Might I suggest that it is because it is more directly emotive and more easily generalisable for a wider audience. What I wish to develop is that idea of combat in games being more than just a few 'exciting' dice rolls, I want it to be something that players are actually apprehensive of.
In stories this 'realism' of combat can be described to convey the physicality, the danger, and so forth, but it is unlikely the writer will be as literally descriptive as players in a role-playing game. Indeed, the 'shot-for-shot' description of a conflict from a rpg into a story would be incredibly dull. However, something a rpg can convey is complex multitude of instant decisions that one might make during a fight (albeit they think over these choices for far longer and can strategise).
Dice-rolling mediated by additional factors (skill, environment, equipment) does a reasonable job of depicting the potential randomness of violent confrontation, but due to the gamifying of the event this introduces a level of agency and control to the situation that is inauthentic.
Simply put, it is not random or final enough. The only time I can recall something 'real' occuring in a rpg was the old-style D&D that I first played aged twelve. At first level your character had 1D4 of hit points if a thief or a magic-user. Most basic weapons and animals do 1D6 damage (arrows, clubs, spears and short swords) meaning that you have a reasonably high likelihood of dying in one hit. Even fighters, whose whole class focus is fairly obvious, only start with 1D8 of hit points (although this can modified up to +3 with bonuses), which means that several good hits will kill pretty much every first level character. Also, despite resurrection being possible in D&D this comes with a gold value (hurray for fantasy capitalism, there is no escape) meaning that again first level or low level characters can not afford it and must offer their services for repayment (useful as a plot hook, often exploited).
However, unfortunately, if your characters survive long enough they get to the point were this one-hit-kill possiblity is utterly removed, indeed, at high levels a single player character can overpower entire armies. Note: There is the possibility of high-level spells killing, 'disintegrating', characters but by this point characters are normally able to raise the dead themselves. Making death not the end, but instead a minor and temporary inconvenience.