(For the purposes of this question, assume the application is free of syntactical errors that would obviously lead to an office action.)
I have corporate experience preparing patent applications. Invariably, we have started broad, received office actions, tightened up the claims, and if we have experienced success it has been after many back-and-forth rounds resulting in something more narrowly defined than in the first pass.
Now, I am wondering what would happen if we submit an application with claims that are very, very narrowly defined on the original submission, and which thus avoid prior art objections? Assuming we are happy with the scope, have you ever seen a narrow set of claims be approved without an office action?
Another way of considering this question is do you think we need to purposely start a little bit broad just so we have something left over for debate? In business negotiations, one would do that. I just don't know if you have to play that game with patent applications.