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> Spirits and explosives, Did it change in 4th?
sunnyside
post May 21 2007, 02:44 PM
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It just occured to me that no special mention of explosives and the like was made in 4th ed regarding spirits. Just that they have the materialization power, and materialization gives "immunity" to normal weapons. (forcex2 hardened armor).

Does that mean that now spirits can be blown up by explosives?

Can they also be shot down by drones?

Squished by cars?
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Ravor
post May 21 2007, 02:51 PM
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Sure, as long as the 'attack' is able to overcome their Hardened Armor Rating why not?
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Narmio
post May 21 2007, 02:52 PM
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Well, there are really only three kinds of damage source. "normal", "magical" and "elemental". Normal being guns, knives and sharp sticks (and the clout spell), magical being anything directly magical, and elemental being electricity, fireballs, toxic waves and the like.

The question is where do tasers, incendiary grenades and explosives fit in?

I'd say frag/HE grenades and most explosives are concussive force primarily and should get reduced. Incendiary weapons are definitely fire damage. Tasers and the like are definitely electrical damage.

This doesn't cause too much of a problem for me, because in my games Stick 'n' Shock ammo was a crazy idea that never got out of prototyping due to numerous massive engineering problems. Sadly this reduces my characters to firing bullets, not magical squishy super-capacitors.
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Ravor
post May 21 2007, 03:02 PM
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Well, personally I consider anything 'mundane' to be subject to 'Immunity from Normal Weapons', so normal fire, tasers, ect go up against the full Hardened Armor Rating because quite frankly to do otherwise makes Stick-n-Shock and tasers to be Spirit Killers when I don't think they were actually meant to be.

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FrankTrollman
post May 21 2007, 04:13 PM
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The distinction between mundane and elemental damage is no longer made. Weapons simply have an AP value, which is applied against Immunity to Normal Weapons.

So a Taser is essentially affected by only half of Immunity to Normal Weapons, but that is because it has a -1/2 AP, and not because there's anything special about it being elemental lightning.

-Frank



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Ravor
post May 21 2007, 04:21 PM
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Aye, I ignore the -1/2 AP modifiers when it comes to Immunity though, it just doesn't 'feel' right for Sec Guards/Runners to see a bad-ass spirit and say, "Hey chummers, a Spirit, pull out your Tasers and S-n-S mags. Charge!"
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FrankTrollman
post May 21 2007, 04:39 PM
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I simply don't give Stick-n-Shock rounds extra damage for hits on the attack roll, treating them as a poison. That keeps its use down among the super bad ass segment of the population.

-Frank
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Demon_Bob
post May 21 2007, 05:55 PM
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For some reason I imagined a suicidal Fire Spirit and a batch of TNT.
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odinson
post May 21 2007, 06:11 PM
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I use the full hardened armour rating, because in the rules for electrical it says it reduces impact by 1/2. Hardened armour is special and gives an effective ballistic and impact equal to it's rating but it is neither.
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psychophipps
post May 21 2007, 06:27 PM
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QUOTE (Ravor)
Aye, I ignore the -1/2 AP modifiers when it comes to Immunity though, it just doesn't 'feel' right for Sec Guards/Runners to see a bad-ass spirit and say, "Hey chummers, a Spirit, pull out your Tasers and S-n-S mags. Charge!"

I have to agree with you on this one. If a spirit is immune to regular weapons, how does changing the bullet to APDS "magically" make the gun better at killing stuff that shouldn't be killable with bullets? :S

S-n-S rounds do make a type of sense due to their elemental nature, however...
Mark(psycho)Phipps( HAHAHA! )
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Ravor
post May 21 2007, 06:44 PM
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Well you see, I agree with FrankTrollman about the nature of 'elemental' damage, so to me at least mundane fire/electrical damage just doen't carry the 'mystic spark' that a Fireball spell does and so doesn't count. (Otherwise I'd have to start asking myself why lead bullets don't count as 'Earth' Elemental attacks, ect and that just isn't a place I want to take Shadowrun.)
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mfb
post May 21 2007, 06:47 PM
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QUOTE (Narmio)
I'd say frag/HE grenades and most explosives are concussive force primarily and should get reduced.

for the sake of argument, consider the fact that concussive force is just a fancy way of saying "really, really strong wind".
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sunnyside
post May 21 2007, 06:51 PM
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Now I have to look it up. I could have sworn in this edition spirits still wouldn't disipate from stun damage (so SnS and tasers would be right out). I'm thinking that's a detail in magic in the streets or something. It isn't an alteration to the immunity power just a special thing about spirits that it takes physical or magical damage to disipate them.

And maybe APDS affects the spirits easier because everyone in SR thinks it should. :P
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HappyDaze
post May 21 2007, 06:58 PM
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QUOTE
And maybe APDS affects the spirits easier because everyone in SR thinks it should. 

The bullets are full of electrolytes - it's what Plant Spirit's want.

Sorry, an Idiocracy moment. Happens a lot these days...
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FrankTrollman
post May 21 2007, 07:23 PM
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QUOTE (sunnyside)
Now I have to look it up. I could have sworn in this edition spirits still wouldn't disipate from stun damage (so SnS and tasers would be right out). I'm thinking that's a detail in magic in the streets or something. It isn't an alteration to the immunity power just a special thing about spirits that it takes physical or magical damage to disipate them.

Inhabitation spirits are not disrupted by being knocked out - you have to actually kill them. That means that you can't remove an insect spirit from a host with a sap.

Same for Possession spirits - as otherwise when a host took enough Physical damage to get knocked out, the spirit would pop out and the character's Body (and thus number of boxes) would go down. There is no "rage death" in Shadowrun for Houngans.

-Frank
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Big D
post May 21 2007, 09:54 PM
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Hmmm. There's a thought--I've always just assumed Stunbolt was the best spirit-killer around, too.

If you overflow a possessed or inhabited or object with stun, does it stay up? Or does it go down, but remain inside?
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sunnyside
post May 22 2007, 01:29 AM
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Well I'm not so sure now. Maybe you can taser them.
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Degausser
post May 22 2007, 02:54 AM
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Interesting discussion. I always assumed that it worked thusly.

"Is your attack magic? No? Well then, it is force 5 so you have to go aginst 10 armor, none of that "AP crap" because, really, should a katana be better at hurting a spirit than a normal sword?

But, that might make spirits too powerful. Since only a complex action is needed to summon a spirit anymore, and you don't need any special materials, a firefight could turn into a cakewalk if you just summoned a spirit of sufficient force and had them go nutso on the enemy
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HappyDaze
post May 22 2007, 03:00 AM
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QUOTE
a firefight could turn into a cakewalk if you just summoned a spirit of sufficient force and had them go nutso on the enemy

It can, and it does. Sadly, after a bit of Initiation and Magic increases, Force 9 (or higher) Spirits become a possibility. God help 90% of mundanes tha have to fight a Force 9 Spirit. The other 10% have offended God and deserve no mercy.
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Degausser
post May 22 2007, 04:45 AM
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QUOTE (HappyDaze)
QUOTE
a firefight could turn into a cakewalk if you just summoned a spirit of sufficient force and had them go nutso on the enemy

It can, and it does. Sadly, after a bit of Initiation and Magic increases, Force 9 (or higher) Spirits become a possibility. God help 90% of mundanes tha have to fight a Force 9 Spirit. The other 10% have offended God and deserve no mercy.

I'll be honest, I'm going to be playing an ork mage in an upcomming game, and the idea of being able to sick "Fido" (or, technically an Air spirit because I'm Bhuddist) on a group of rent-a-cops and having them be able to do nothing about it makes me as giddy as a school girl.

But, in the interest of Game Balance, this seems a little broken. Mages have spells so the can compete with the most cybered of street sams (if they build that way) so why can't street sams go up against Mages?


Speaking of!

Anyone remember the old SR3 Spirit rules in Melee? As I seem to recall, Unarmed combat was very effective agaisnt spirits, since you were putting your (even mundane) aura agains theirs. Likewise, melee weapons were somewhat effective, as you were directly powering those with your aura (and it was touching your body.) It was only bullets that didn't do much.

Anyone remember if that still is the case? If so, it would at least give characters not astrally percieving a chance.
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Jaid
post May 22 2007, 04:54 AM
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there are rules in street magic for attacking with your aura (as you call it). they are still around, and as i understand it, are remarkably similar to SR3 in one way: it's still not an effective method of fighting spirits.

your best bet, should you be fighting spirits (and using the base rules, no houserules) is to use elemental damage. electricity being by far the easiest to obtain. your next best bet is to use something with a buttload of damage and AP. for example, monowhips, troll bows, elephant guns/sniper rifles loaded with APDS, fast moving vehicles, anti-vehicle rockets, and so forth.

expect more options at some point in the future with arsenal.
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Degausser
post May 22 2007, 05:11 AM
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hey, speaking of all this spirit stuff, I have on questin that's pretty off topic:

Anyone know what those sidebars describing traditions actually MEAN? Like, where it says

"Combat: Air
Detection: Guidance
Health: Earth
Illusion: Fire
Manipulation: Water"

Does that mean, as a Bhuddist mage, I can only summon Air spirits for Combat? Or are they there just for fancy show and don't mean a damn thing?
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Narmio
post May 22 2007, 05:25 AM
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QUOTE (Jaid)

your best bet, should you be fighting spirits (and using the base rules, no houserules) is to use elemental damage. electricity being by far the easiest to obtain. your next best bet is to use something with a buttload of damage and AP. for example, monowhips, troll bows, elephant guns/sniper rifles loaded with APDS, fast moving vehicles, anti-vehicle rockets, and so forth.

Or a ghoul fired out of a cannon.
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Jaid
post May 22 2007, 11:24 AM
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QUOTE (Degausser)
hey, speaking of all this spirit stuff, I have on questin that's pretty off topic:

Anyone know what those sidebars describing traditions actually MEAN? Like, where it says

"Combat: Air
Detection: Guidance
Health: Earth
Illusion: Fire
Manipulation: Water"

Does that mean, as a Bhuddist mage, I can only summon Air spirits for Combat? Or are they there just for fancy show and don't mean a damn thing?

no. those are the categories of spells which are attached to the spirit types. for example, a mage of that tradition you posted can use bound spirits to assist in learning a spell (for example). in order to receive help learning a combat spell, you would need a bound air spirit. there are several other things bound spirits can do which are tied to the category of spell they associate to. look it up under bound spirit services.
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Jagger
post May 22 2007, 12:32 PM
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Spirits are the reason I am dreading the day when one of my players decides to make a magician character. I'm already groaning about my technomancer and his army of sprites, but that's another story for another time.

Immunity to Normal Weapons is an interesting phrase. I read this to mean physical attacks, such as bullets, or swords from one of the old worlds (as opposed to the Sixth World). So when the question of tasers, stick-n-shock, APDS, and grenades comes into question, this is my take on it.

The spirits are pretty tough and easy to get a hold of as it is. You don't have to pay for them with nuyen, feed them, water them, nor read them bedtime stories. You just spend a couple hours summoning them and you have your own personal army. Is it really necessary to make them near invulnerable to non-magical characters? Not in my games. So, I allow non-magical elemental attacks such as flamethrowers, explosives (concussion / fire), children with socks on during winter, and shock gloves to do full damage.

Frag/HE grenades:
concussion / fire / fragmentation. 50% hardened armor value.

Flamethrower:
Works fine.

Taser:
Sure... if you are that brave.

APDS:
Negative. This penetrates via physical means, not elemental. Apply the 1/2 AP AFTER the hardened armor is considered.

Random Bolt of Lightning from the Sky:
Of course!

A flaming stick from a camp fire:
The fire would hurt, the melee not so much.

Explosive Ammunition:
The description of this makes the explosive portion sound minor in comparison to the fragmentation portion. I would give this the DV bonus, but not the AP bonus, and 50% hardened armor value.

Physical Adepts Elemental Strike:
Sure.

Ares MP Laser III:
Sure... if they ever bring it back.
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