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> Fun with Emergence, or why it won't suck
The Jopp
post Jun 15 2007, 10:06 AM
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Also remember that you can have an external commlink and accessories hidden beneath your clothes and accessed through skinlink.

Spotting a technomancer will be basically impossible unless you can X-ray their brain and know what to look for in their brainpattern.
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Grinder
post Jun 15 2007, 12:48 PM
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QUOTE (odinson)
QUOTE (Grinder @ Jun 15 2007, 04:12 AM)
QUOTE (fistandantilus3.0 @ Jun 15 2007, 09:06 AM)
Which could be a lto of fun and explain why people are looking at each other side ways. After all, the tricky thing about those "scary technomancers that can invade the system that runs your life " .... they look just like everyone else.

And Hacker's dont? :P

hackers look like everyone else.

That's exactly what I wanted to say with my post. :)
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TW
post Jun 15 2007, 01:52 PM
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QUOTE (The Jopp)
Spotting a technomancer will be basically impossible unless you can X-ray their brain ...

Pfft, why use the hands-off approach if investigative surgery is so much more fun?

(Just saw a 'Scrubs' episode last night showing Turk's idea of investigative surgery :D)
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Dashifen
post Jun 15 2007, 04:00 PM
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QUOTE (The Jopp)
Spotting a technomancer will be basically impossible unless you can X-ray their brain and know what to look for in their brainpattern.

Or get five hits on an assensing test.
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X-Kalibur
post Jun 15 2007, 05:45 PM
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I don't think you can "X-Ray" a brain for patterns.... MRI and CT sure. ;)
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lunchbox311
post Jun 15 2007, 05:53 PM
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QUOTE (X-Kalibur @ Jun 15 2007, 12:45 PM)
I don't think you can "X-Ray" a brain for patterns.... MRI and CT sure.  ;)

No it will work!

If you X-ray his head he will be forced to hack the x-ray machine or die. :evil:

Since heavy equipment messes with electrical equipment... the hacker should be gone.


Seems as logical as the salem witch trials...

Throw her in the water... if she floats she is a witch... kill her

If she sinks she is a person... but is dead anyway.


Cancer for the win!
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knasser
post Jun 16 2007, 05:40 PM
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QUOTE (Meriss)
@knasser: Look at it this way chummer, if you really don't like TM's you can use Emergence as justification to kill a few. :)


Not really. It's not that I don't like Technomancers as a character in the world of Shadowrun. It's that I as a real life GM running a game I bought don't like them. At the risk of provoking yet another comment from the developers that Technomancers are not magical, I can't see how they aren't - they manipulate computers with their organic brains without any connection. And I don't like magic stealing from characters that are entirely based around technology. And technomancers most certainly do steal from hackers. Whilst at any reasonable build cost, hackers have a much broader range than technomancers, what actually matters in respect terms is being "the best." And in SR4, technomancers will be the best at whatever they focus on.

If technomancers aren't magic (and I know that the developers have said so, but I need a very good reason to justify them as based in technology and science and I wont see that reason until Emergence is released), then they're some wavy mysticy "part of the matrix colonised my brain when it crashed on me and now I can meditate and be in tune with it" fluff stuff that is only not "magic" because the term has been re-defined not to include it. I don't have any PC technomancers in my game and I haven't bothered to create any NPC ones, either. However you spin it, building a campaign arc around a single character archetype is dangerous planning because if you have such a character in your game, they inevitably get undue significance from it (which may very well not be appropriate) and if you don't have any then player characters are forever sidelined from that specialness. It's like building a campaign plot about psychics, but none of the PCs are or will ever be psychics themselves. You can do it where the significant ones are evil - they're Call of Cthulhu Old Ones, or irredemable vampires or something, but not where the special people are sympathetic and / or good guys. (And in moral fiction, the persecuted are always good guys).

So I'm awaiting the release of Emergence and will treat it with an open mind. As I said, I have little doubt that the writing will be excellent and the plot well thought out. But leaving aside my dislike of technomancers which I fully recognize only applies to a proportion of Shadowrun GMs, focusing on a particular archetype for a major plot arc, is no different to a focus on, say, elven persecution. I would be very, very happy to be proved wrong though.

-K.
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Wakshaani
post Jun 16 2007, 10:20 PM
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Until you hear otherwise, here's the Wakshaani Take on it.

Deus planned ahead and, with all the work he did on drones, nanotech, and cyberimplants, got to a point where he could generate Nanite implants... basicly, nanites hit a body, upconvert them to a wireless point, then burn out or, possibly, lurk to infect others later.

I'd say burnout, with a handful of nano-hives out there that produce new swarms ever so often, which then infect new hosts. All the infected know is that they gradually start hearing things, then understand that they're wireless signals and, in time, they can communicate back/program as well.

Taa daa! No need for magic.

:)
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Aaron
post Jun 16 2007, 10:56 PM
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QUOTE (Wakshaani)
Until you hear otherwise, here's the Wakshaani Take on it.

Deus planned ahead and, with all the work he did on drones, nanotech, and cyberimplants, got to a point where he could generate Nanite implants... basicly, nanites hit a body, upconvert them to a wireless point, then burn out or, possibly, lurk to infect others later.

I'd say burnout, with a handful of nano-hives out there that produce new swarms ever so often, which then infect new hosts. All the infected know is that they gradually start hearing things, then understand that they're wireless signals and, in time, they can communicate back/program as well.

Taa daa! No need for magic.

:)

Interesting. That could also explain the fact that technomancers can be detected from astral space.

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bibliophile20
post Jun 16 2007, 11:50 PM
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My personal opinion is this:
We have some sort of "entity" sitting in cyberspace that goes by the name of "The Deep Resonance" that apparently has nothing better to do than sit around and make otaku, children who could interface with the old Matrix with their minds directly, no cyberdeck required. This obviously requires some degree of physiological manipulation of the brain that slowly faded as the brain matured.

Now, one of my favorite theoretical, yet plausible, mutations is an organic radio. I've seen this idea in several places, mostly in sci-fi, but I've also seen it in several articles on potential xenobiology and alternate evolution.
[ Spoiler ]

The idea is, just like an eye can evolve by increasing it's owner's fitness, a critter, living in an environment where conventional forms of communication (such as smell or sound) are not practical, might evolve an organic radio transceiver. I have seen a few articles that are hypothetical exercises in that direction. But the fact remains, it is possible, albeit only hypothetically at the moment, for an organism to build a working radio transceiver within it's body (the usual example that I see is in the vertebra, where the bone can act as an insulator and it is also nicely close to the spine and, therefore, communication with the brain).

Now let's combine those two; we have a mysterious entity that may or may not be sentient living somewhere in the Matrix that is capable of altering the brain structure of human beings. And we also have the, albeit strictly hypothetical, organic radio transceiver.

I think by this point you see where I'm going with this.

The otaku were version 1; the Deep Resonance had to work with what it had, i.e. a datajack, which meant modifying the brain structure that interfaced with that jack. However, it is significant that the Fading started to occur when the brain is finishing with the process of maturation; once the brain is set and finished, there's no more significant change for the Resonance to capitalize on, and as there's only one point of entry into the brain--the datajack--once those cells are mature, it's only a matter of time before the otaku abilities are gone.

But now the Matrix is wireless, which means that there's no longer a single point of entry into the brain, and that the Resonance can capitalize on that, perhaps forming a distributed network of transceivers throughout the body, which would explain why the Essence loss hurts the TMs so much--you're slicing away some of their transceivers.
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Meriss
post Jun 17 2007, 03:03 AM
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Hmm.. bibliophile I am intrigued by your ideas and wish to subsribe to you newsletter.

Wakshaani: Your's works too.

How's about this. Genetech. Deus (It's so easy to say him cause he's dead or is he ?) managed to release himself as a retroviral code fragment. When the time is right, say 2070 the infected hosts will come together to resurect the AI as a god of the Sixth World. :evil:
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bibliophile20
post Jun 22 2007, 11:30 PM
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QUOTE (bibliophile20)
My personal opinion is this:
We have some sort of "entity" sitting in cyberspace that goes by the name of "The Deep Resonance" that apparently has nothing better to do than sit around and make otaku, children who could interface with the old Matrix with their minds directly, no cyberdeck required. This obviously requires some degree of physiological manipulation of the brain that slowly faded as the brain matured.

Now, one of my favorite theoretical, yet plausible, mutations is an organic radio. I've seen this idea in several places, mostly in sci-fi, but I've also seen it in several articles on potential xenobiology and alternate evolution.
[ Spoiler ]

The idea is, just like an eye can evolve by increasing it's owner's fitness, a critter, living in an environment where conventional forms of communication (such as smell or sound) are not practical, might evolve an organic radio transceiver. I have seen a few articles that are hypothetical exercises in that direction. But the fact remains, it is possible, albeit only hypothetically at the moment, for an organism to build a working radio transceiver within it's body (the usual example that I see is in the vertebra, where the bone can act as an insulator and it is also nicely close to the spine and, therefore, communication with the brain).

Now let's combine those two; we have a mysterious entity that may or may not be sentient living somewhere in the Matrix that is capable of altering the brain structure of human beings. And we also have the, albeit strictly hypothetical, organic radio transceiver.

I think by this point you see where I'm going with this.

The otaku were version 1; the Deep Resonance had to work with what it had, i.e. a datajack, which meant modifying the brain structure that interfaced with that jack. However, it is significant that the Fading started to occur when the brain is finishing with the process of maturation; once the brain is set and finished, there's no more significant change for the Resonance to capitalize on, and as there's only one point of entry into the brain--the datajack--once those cells are mature, it's only a matter of time before the otaku abilities are gone.

But now the Matrix is wireless, which means that there's no longer a single point of entry into the brain, and that the Resonance can capitalize on that, perhaps forming a distributed network of transceivers throughout the body, which would explain why the Essence loss hurts the TMs so much--you're slicing away some of their transceivers.

I WAS RIGHT!

Well, mostly... But still!
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knasser
post Jun 22 2007, 11:46 PM
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QUOTE (bibliophile20)

   My personal opinion is this:
We have some sort of "entity" sitting in cyberspace that goes by the name of "The Deep Resonance" that apparently has nothing better to do than sit around and make otaku, children who could interface with the old Matrix with their minds directly, no cyberdeck required.  This obviously requires some degree of physiological manipulation of the brain that slowly faded as the brain matured. 

Now, one of my favorite theoretical, yet plausible, mutations is an organic radio.  I've seen this idea in several places, mostly in sci-fi, but I've also seen it in several articles on potential xenobiology and alternate evolution.

//**spoiler text deleted because it was sending the forum software crazy**//

The idea is, just like an eye can evolve by increasing it's owner's fitness, a critter, living in an environment where conventional forms of communication (such as smell or sound) are not practical, might evolve an organic radio transceiver.  I have seen a few articles that are hypothetical exercises in that direction.  But the fact remains, it is possible, albeit only hypothetically at the moment, for an organism to build a working radio transceiver within it's body (the usual example that I see is in the vertebra, where the bone can act as an insulator and it is also nicely close to the spine and, therefore, communication with the brain).

Now let's combine those two; we have a mysterious entity that may or may not be sentient living somewhere in the Matrix that is capable of altering the brain structure of human beings.  And we also have the, albeit strictly hypothetical, organic radio transceiver. 

I think by this point you see where I'm going with this. 

The otaku were version 1; the Deep Resonance had to work with what it had, i.e. a datajack, which meant modifying the brain structure that interfaced with that jack.  However, it is significant that the Fading started to occur when the brain is finishing with the process of maturation; once the brain is set and finished, there's no more significant change for the Resonance to capitalize on, and as there's only one point of entry into the brain--the datajack--once those cells are mature, it's only a matter of time before the otaku abilities are gone. 

But now the Matrix is wireless, which means that there's no longer a single point of entry into the brain, and that the Resonance can capitalize on that, perhaps forming a distributed network of transceivers throughout the body, which would explain why the Essence loss hurts the TMs so much--you're slicing away some of their transceivers.

  I WAS RIGHT!

Well, mostly... But still!


Not really. Emergence states near the beginning:

[ Spoiler ]


So it's not really settled. And I'm really dissappointed in that. Synner has repeatedly and explicitly stated that technomancers are not magic and also said that things would become more clear with Emergence. Well now we see that it hasn't. If you want to state that something is not magic when it has every appearance of being magic (i.e. no plausible technological or scientific way it could happen), then you need to offer an alternative. You can't just say "trust me. It looks like this, but it isn't." And though I like Wakshaani's proposed nano explanation as the best attempt at rationalising it technologically that I've heard yet, there is the problem that (a) Emergence suggests that there is no modification of the brain by such a technological process - it just happens to people, and (b) doesn't suggest that itself.

So now as well as Adepts making the best hackers, it seems that Magic is taking over the Matrix in a more fundamental way still.

EDIT: I think I've got round the bugs in the forum code. Thanks for the suggestions, people. I suppose while I'm editing, I should probably say that Bibliophile's explanation is actually better than what we're given in the book.
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bibliophile20
post Jun 23 2007, 12:03 AM
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What do you mean? It says right in there that
[ Spoiler ]
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knasser
post Jun 23 2007, 12:14 AM
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Going to have to get back to you later. I think I'm going to try and put all my thoughts on Emergence into one post. Just saying that for some reason I can't edit my last post to put the spoiler tags where I intended them to be. Everytime I hit "Edit" it only displays part of my post in the edit box. Sincere apologies to everyone for the lack of spoiler. Maybe a mod could look at it? The tags were meant to go around the excerpted text.

-K.
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Rotbart van Dain...
post Jun 23 2007, 12:22 AM
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Combining Spoilers with quotes makes the board go nuts. Mark and copy your post in normal viewing mode, then edit.
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JonathanC
post Jun 23 2007, 12:29 AM
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QUOTE (Meriss)

Again TM comes home, goes to sleep and wakes up staring at her brain floating in a jar.

How exactly would this work? You can't see your own brain floating in a jar, since without your brain, your eyes wouldn't have anything to send visual information to.
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fistandantilus4....
post Jun 23 2007, 03:47 AM
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QUOTE (knasser)
Maybe a mod could look at it? The tags were meant to go around the excerpted text.

-K.

Same software problem would likely apply, as well as that little glitch about it removing everything after the first spoiler when you edit. I hate glitches.
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hyzmarca
post Jun 23 2007, 04:09 AM
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I've ran into the same problem before. It is related to the use of multiple spoiler tags in a single post. I suggest that you copy the entire text of your post and before hitting edit, pasting it into the edit box, and adjusting the tags manually. That's how I fixed it when I encountered this problem.
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knasser
post Jun 23 2007, 07:49 AM
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Okay. I think that I've sorted the odd bugs in my post by following all your suggestions. Thanks. I guess Bibliophile is actually right, but I put my own point badly. There is a bit in there that suggests Bibliophile's idea, but at the same time, Emergence explicitly refuses to commit to the explanation. It even goes so far as to suggest they might be a new form of the magically awakened.
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Synner
post Jun 23 2007, 08:45 AM
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QUOTE (knasser @ Jun 22 2007, 11:46 PM)
So it's not really settled. And I'm really dissappointed in that. Synner has repeatedly and explicitly stated that technomancers are not magic and also said that things would become more clear with Emergence. Well now we see that it hasn't. If you want to state that something is not magic when it has every appearance of being magic (i.e. no plausible technological or scientific way it could happen), then you need to offer an alternative. You can't just say "trust me. It looks like this, but it isn't."

I beg to differ, Emergence does make things more clear. Emergence tells you several things (mainly in the first three chapters) about technomancers.

[ Spoiler ]


What the game information in the first chapter says is simply that "Emergence is not intended to provide comprehensive answers to the nagging questions of both gamemasters and players." - ie. it doesn't settle things one way or another... but make no mistake Emergence gives you a number of clues as to what technomancers are and what they are not.

I purposefully included that line in the first chapter (and not at the end) to avoid misleading readers.

QUOTE
(a) Emergence suggests that there is no modification of the brain by such a technological process - it just happens to people,

This is incorrect. Emergence actually suggests three or four different ways the modifications could be accomplished by purely technological processes (three of them in chapter 2).

QUOTE
(b) doesn't suggest that itself.

Again I disagree. Bibliophile's theory is perfectly plausible under one of the hypothesis fielded during the case study discussion in chapter 2. As it currently stands both bibliophile's and Wakshaani's are both still plausible "origins". I apologize if my posts led you to believe that things would be resolved in some manner, though I don't believe I ever stated anything to that effect. I have repeatly stated that Emergence would make some things clearer regarding technomancers, and it does.
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knasser
post Jun 23 2007, 10:45 AM
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Okay. They are good points. I've just done a fairly long review of Emergence in another thread which I wrote before reading your reply just now. So I'm afraid you might want to cut and paste it in response to my same point over there?

Regarding the misleading, I think I took it from your statements that Technomancers were not magic and that Emergence would make this clear. For me, my brain translated that as: you will get an explanation of technomancers in Emergence. The false expectation was probably on my part.

Synner - I'm very concious of having had this issue come up several times on the board and I want to emphasize what a huge fan of Shadowrun 4th edition I actually am. The last thing that I want is to come across as having a go at its developers. Particularly again and again on the same subject. It's only happened because the subject has come up repeatedly in multiple threads and because technomancers are obviously dear to your heart and you are compelled to defend them. I hope I've been fair in my comments. You might consider that I never complain when Wizards of the Coast bring out something I don't like so much. It's only those we admire about that can ever be be hurt by. :)

So I really, really hope that the fact this has come up several times with me is not taken personally.
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Meriss
post Jun 24 2007, 12:35 AM
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QUOTE (JonathanC @ Jun 22 2007, 08:29 PM)
QUOTE (Meriss @ Jun 14 2007, 08:59 PM)

Again TM comes home, goes to sleep and wakes up staring at her brain floating in a jar.

How exactly would this work? You can't see your own brain floating in a jar, since without your brain, your eyes wouldn't have anything to send visual information to.

Cyber eyes ;) Mostly thou I was just using it as an example of the Very Bad Things that could happen to your TM. Although could you biodrone a TM? You wouldn't have to worry about Resonance loss that way.
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Prime Mover
post Jun 24 2007, 03:22 AM
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Guess after rereading an Ehran and Harley conversation from past matrix book and mention of early Technomancer in another story meeting and interacting with entities in the matrix I came away with rather odd thought. In Earthdawn "passions" were like idols,gods,totems. Harley even had conversation with what believe was one in past adventure "lady of fate". (not sure Earthdawn names)

What if as new world the matrix has spawned what past awakened worlds have, somthing along lines of Passsions,totems in the matrix and these passions so to speak have fostered a new form of adept, not magic per say but somthing new even those ancients may have expected but dont quite understand.

Just a thought not even really complete yet.
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Synner
post Jun 24 2007, 09:50 AM
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There's a reason one track particular of System Failure is called Singularity.
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