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FrankTrollman
post Nov 13 2007, 07:42 PM
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Settings so far suggested:
  • Seattle.
  • Hong Kong
  • The Arctic (based presumably either out of the Transpolar Aleut or the New Soviet)
  • Japan
  • Amazonia
  • Chicago (in 2071 it would be after the cleanup was officially over and set in the resettlement period)
  • Prague
  • South East Asian Pirate Waters
  • Space

I would like to do more gaming. Which given my present circumstances isn't hard at all. I don't speak Czech particularly and the only edition of Shadowrun which has ever been printed in Czech Language was 2nd edition and the rights to translate the current edition are in a maddening limbo that noone even understands. Plus, while playing a pick-up game in bilingual Czechlish can be a rewarding gaming experience, it's actually a very draining experience for the Czechs and the Americans both.

So I've decided to run a game on line. My dormitory has a bunch of blocked ports at the level of the router, so I can't use any of those fancy online game servers. I'm seriously planning on running this as a simple chat window. You can roll actual dice and report the results. I figure if you aren't mature enough to be trusted with rolling dice then you have no business playing an RPG anyway.

Setting

I am open to suggestions. This isn't because of a lack of ideas on my part, quite the contrary. This is what I always do when starting a campaign. First off, every player nominates a few places where the campaign should be set, and then everyone hashes it out amongst each other which of the nominated options should be chosen.

This methodology has ended up with characters being Aztec Sun Warriors who did trouble shooting for the nation/corporation; international saboteurs based out of London; do-gooder anarchists based out of Sydney; and a Triad magical group based out of the Bay Area.

Character Morality

I will say right now that I have no problem at all with "evil" characters. I'm OK with one or more players playing a murderer, a rapist, a Toxic Magician, a ghoul, or an Insect Mage. It doesn't bother me in the least. But it's not for every game. Just as everyone has to agree on where the game takes place, everyone has to agree on a relative moral compass for the group. If one or more players has a problem with in-game canibalism (even if that problem is just "I don't really enjoy games which include that sort of thing") then playing a man-eater is destructive to the group dynamic. Once everyone's comfort zones are established, they will be enforced. If you agree to a game where you don't kill children and then your character goes off and starts stabbing in a kindergarten that really is just like cheating and should be treated as such.

House Rules

I write a lot of material. People can pretty much use it.

People should decide on a power level of course. Since I will be using the half skill price systems, a 400 BP character is actually quite effective at a number of tasks. People are welcome to play at 350 BP instead. At 400 BP, characters get 7000 nuyen for a BP. At 350 BP, spending a BP would get you 5000 nuyen.

Here's the rules:

Character Creation and Advancement

Karma Does Not Exist
When your character succeeds and gets bling, it will come in the form of extra Build Points. These are spent at exactly the same rate as when you begin play. Exceptions:
  • You cannot purchase ¥ with post-character generation BP, nor can you sell ¥ for BP later on.
  • Contacts are acquired in-game and not with BP once the game has begun.
Skills are Half Price
  • Skills cost 2 BP
  • Skill Groups cost 5 BP
  • Specializations cost 1 BP
  • Knowledge Skills cost 1 BP
    Merry Christmas.
Starting maximums are still one 6 or two 5s. You can commute raising a Skill Group, meaning that if you purchase up one skill out of a Skill group you can raise the rest of them up one for 3 BP. If you raise two Skills out of the group, you can raise the remaining skills for just 1 BP – exactly as if you had just purchased the whole group at once.

Eventually characters can raise their skills to 7 for double cost. The augmented maximum of your skill is always skill +3 rather than Skill x 1.5.

Attributes are Not
Attributes still cost 10 BP per point and you can still throw down up to 200 BP into your Mental and Physical Attributes. Edge and Magic are, of course, Special Attributes and don't apply to that limit.

We are using a less painful methodology for raising attributes. Your natural maximum in Magic only ever costs 10 BP. Raising any other attributes to the natural maximum costs 20 BP. Characters can raise their attributes past the normal maximum for 20 points each. This also raises their personal natural maximum and augmented maximum accordingly.

Varying Costs of Other Things
Contacts: A contact costs a number of “contact points? equal to its Loyalty times its Connections. You get 3 Contact points for a BP at character generation. This means that a 6/6 Contact still costs 12 actual BP, but a 3/3 Contact only costs 3 BP. This is to encourage people to know more less impressive people.

¥ Nuyen ¥: If we're playing at 400 BP starting, characters can get 7000¥ for 1 BP (cap is still 50 BP). If we are playing at 350, the exchange rate is still 5000¥ per BP.

Qualities and Races

You can take up to 35 BP of negative qualities, and up to 35 BP of positive qualities at character generation. You can purchase qualities later on with permission, but there has to be a reason. As normal.

Aspected Magicians

You can use the Aspected Magicians rules that I wrote. Aspected Magician is a positive quality which is taken instead of Magician, Adept, Mystic Adept, or Astral Sight (which is also removed altogether under this system because it is dumb). Aspected Magicians excel in their field of magic, ad this is represented by starting play as a Grade 1 Initiate with a metamagic of their choice. Unless otherwise stated, they are like Magicians. The types are as follows:
  • Aspected Conjurers Cannot learn Sorcery skills, cast spells, or provide Counterspelling. They can astrally perceive but cannot astrally project. They can can use other magic skills (most notably conjuring skills). This quality costs 10 points.
  • Aspected Sorcerers Cannot learn Conjuring skills, summon spirits, or Banish. They can astrally perceive but cannot astrally project. They can can use other magic skills (most notably Sorcery skills). This quality costs 10 points.
  • Path Aspect Must choose 2 categories of Magic and the associated spirits according to their tradition. The character may only cast spells or summon spirits of those two categories/types. They may still use Banishing and Counterspelling against any target. They may still conjure Watchers and Allies. They can astrally perceive but cannot astrally project. This quality costs 10 points.
  • Astral Aspect Cannot cast any spells on Physical Targets, nor can they conjure any spirit that has Possession or Materialization (Watchers are still OK). They can still cast Mana spells on Astral Targets. The threshold for their Assensing tests is reduced by 1. This quality costs 5 points.
Some Qualities Don't Exist

We're looking at you Aptitude, Exceptional Attribute, and Lucky. The rules for exceeding normal caps are much less stringent, so these qualities don't do anything.

Metatypes and Cost

Ork, Elf, or Dwarf: 25 BP
Troll: 35 BP

Ghouls
Ghoul (30 BP): 
 
B: 5/10 
A: 1/6 
R: 3/8 
S: 4/9 
C: 1/4  
I: 2/7 
L: 1/5 
W: 3/8 
Edg: 1/6 
Ess: 5  
M: 1/5 
Movement: 10/25 
 
Powers: 
Dual Natured, Enhanced Senses (Hearing, Smell), Natural Weapon (Claws: S/2 + 1), Resistance (+3 dice vs. Disease) 
 
Ghouls get the following Negative Qualities and gain no BPs for them (these do not count against the 35 BP limit): 
Allergy (Sunlight, Mild), Dark Secret (Ghoul), Dietary Requirement (Metahuman Flesh), Reduced Senses (Blind). 

In-Game Shenanigans

Matrix Rules

These are fairly long:
http://forums.dumpshock.com/index.php?show...opic=19657&st=0

Toxic Traditions

Playable ones:
http://forums.dumpshock.com/index.php?showtopic=15585
The bad guys will be using this system even if the players are not.

Hardened Armor

Hardened Armor provides automatic damage reduction hits. It is also half the size it appears at in the basic book. That means that a Force 6 Spirit has Immunity to Normal Weapons that provides 6 automatic hits soaking damage. AP still reduces Hardened Armor.

-Frank
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Tarantula
post Nov 13 2007, 07:45 PM
Post #2


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I'd love to play!

As far as suggestions for setting, I'll go with the standard seattle runners for hire to get by.

Moral compass... Well, I'd steer away from cannibalism and baby killing, but adults and such are fine to kill.
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Ol' Scratch
post Nov 13 2007, 07:54 PM
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Welcome to the Shadows, the forum for online games, is that way.
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Redjack
post Nov 13 2007, 07:58 PM
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Moved to correct forum
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fistandantilus4....
post Nov 13 2007, 08:00 PM
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heh, I was about o move it to game registry as this isn't being run here on DS, but it seems someone beat me to the punch. Frank, do you have a prefence for which forum - W2tS or Registry?

RJ :P
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Fortune
post Nov 13 2007, 08:09 PM
Post #6


Immoral Elf
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QUOTE (fistandantilus3.0)
Frank, do you have a prefence for which forum ...

I'm thinking his preference was the SR4 forum, right where he posted it. ;) :D
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Redjack
post Nov 13 2007, 08:15 PM
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QUOTE (Fortune)
I'm thinking his preference was the SR4 forum

That however is not the correct forum for game announcements. ;)
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Seven-7
post Nov 13 2007, 08:19 PM
Post #8


Moving Target
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To clarify (if I may), the players nominate three places, and so here I go:

Hong Kong
Artic
Japan
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Fortune
post Nov 13 2007, 08:20 PM
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QUOTE (Redjack)
That however is not the correct forum for game announcements.


Technically, neither is this one (WttS), if the game isn't actually being played in the forums here. ;) :D
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Smilin_Jack
post Nov 13 2007, 08:30 PM
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If it wasn't a chat based game or if my work schedule wasn't so crazy I'd sign up in a heartbeat.

Frank is just a big tease, releasing all those house rules and then going and running a game. :P

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Whipstitch
post Nov 13 2007, 08:40 PM
Post #11


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I'm interested; my IRL group appears to be slowly grinding to a halt, and well, I'm an incorrigible SR addict. But first, I'm afraid I must ask the million dollar question: What timeframe are we looking at here? Considering the whole multi-national situation we'd be be looking at from recruiting here on the boards, I figure it's probably best to get that li'l thorny issue hashed out a bit ASAP.
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FrankTrollman
post Nov 13 2007, 08:43 PM
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I was thinking Saturday Evening GMT. That's lunch time in North America's Pacific Coast.

And 2071, in case you were wondering aboutr that kind of time.

-Frank
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Fortune
post Nov 13 2007, 08:53 PM
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QUOTE (FrankTrollman)
I was thinking Saturday Evening GMT. That's lunch time in North America's Pacific Coast.

And very early Sunday mornings in Oz.
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Whipstitch
post Nov 13 2007, 08:53 PM
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Sounds pretty ideal to me, actually. Saturdays are pretty wide open for me and since I'm in the US Central timezone that'd be pretty much in the middle of the day.

Oh, and I'm one of those people whose moral compass doesn't really extend to corpses or affording women and children special status. On the other hand, I don't find cruelty for cruelty's sake entertaining either, and don't particularly feel like spending too much time rping such things. To put it crudely as possible, my "worst" characters are generally anti-sadism/rape/whatever and pro-cannibalistic blood magic rituals, wetwork, torture for information and organlegging. Basically, the latter accomplishes something while the former makes you enemies without even getting you a measly Bloodzilla or a fatter credstick to show for your efforts. Most of my characters are more scrupulous than that, but I'm not afraid of playing the odd nihilistic greedy bastard. Just don't expect me to wander around drowning puppies (without pay).
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Narse
post Nov 13 2007, 09:07 PM
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This sounds absolutely tantalizing. I'd like to get in on the action. However I would have to obtain whatever chat program you would be using, could you offer specifics? Also, I'm thinking that your location in eastern Europe might cause some interesting scheduling of any real-time communication (such as a chat). What time(s) were you thinking of running at?

If it turns out that I can participate, I would like to suggest the following locations as settings:
The Arctic
Amazonia
Greater Chicago Metropolitan area (Chicago's still bug city right?)

As for the rest of the setting, I modestly suggest at least Semi-Legitimate employment.
It is my feeling that there are more reasons for people to live on the shadowy fringe of society than entirely within the shadows. I also feel that this can give a group more cohesion if they are united by a Raison d'être or at least share more than per mission objectives.

As for morality, I'm pretty open. I have a few character concepts kicking around right now that involve characters who have what would typically be considered an unhealthy view/obsession with death and killing, but I can easily save them for another time. That being said, I'd like to stay generally away from 'Modest Proposal' territory, however I would be OK with Ghoul PC's. An example: Harvesting for Tanamous, while presenting interesting logistical challenges, would require more effort to suppress my natural morality than I would care to engage in at this time.

As for power level, I think I'd enjoy a game that presents some challenges, as long as that occurs, I think I will have fun.

EDIT: Some of this didn't come across exactly as I intended, so take it with a grain of salt. Also keep in mind that I consider gangs and other criminal organizations Semi-Legitimate.

EDIT 2: I see that the timeframe question has already been answered, Saturdays work for me. Although I might have to set an alarm... (I tend to sleep in more than I should).
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Fortune
post Nov 13 2007, 09:12 PM
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QUOTE (Narse)
Chicago's still bug city right?

Not really. The city itself has been opened up, and the Containment Zone has been brought down, but there are a few lingering insects hanging out. Of course, the bigger problem is the FAB clouds, but I don't know if they are still floating around.
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Narse
post Nov 13 2007, 09:15 PM
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QUOTE (Fortune @ Nov 13 2007, 04:12 PM)
QUOTE (Narse @ Nov 14 2007, 07:07 AM)
Chicago's still bug city right?

Not really. The city itself has been opened up, and the Containment Zone has been brought down, but there are a few lingering insects hanging out. Of course, the bigger problem is the FAB clouds, but I don't know if they are still floating around.

Dangit, I can't keep up with all the setting changes/metaplot elements. Especially as I don't have any of the plot books.

That sucks about chicago though.
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Tarantula
post Nov 13 2007, 09:21 PM
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Ugh, my RL SR game is every other saturday...
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Whipstitch
post Nov 13 2007, 09:38 PM
Post #19


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Far as setting goes, I'm kind of in favor of ol' Seattle, at least as a homebase, anyway. Some commutes to places like Caracas now and again would be cool though. I generally prefer sprawl campaigns and usually set my characters up as North American "out of towners" when I'm integrating into a new group.
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Fortune
post Nov 13 2007, 09:43 PM
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Why don't you base it out of Prague, seeing as Frank is actually there now and could probably weave some of the city's vaunted flavor and history into the game as he learns about it more intimately himself?
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FrankTrollman
post Nov 13 2007, 11:06 PM
Post #21


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Settings so far suggested:
  • Seattle.
  • Hong Kong
  • The Arctic (based presumably either out of the Transpolar Aleut or the New Soviet)
  • Japan
  • Amazonia
  • Chicago (in 2071 it would be after the cleanup was officially over and set in the resettlement period)
  • Prague

-Frank
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Catharz Godfoot
post Nov 14 2007, 07:36 PM
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How about Lago's idea: Techno-Privateers: The Search for the Black Paydata? Or hell, the similar but slightly more expensive 'runners in Outer Spaaace'?
Alternatively, what's going on down in Bahia?

If I end up being able to play I'd be down for anything not too technophobic.
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FrankTrollman
post Nov 14 2007, 07:53 PM
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So I consolidated a bunch of the rules into the first post, also I put the current suggested locations up on the top as well.

-Frank
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Whipstitch
post Nov 14 2007, 09:59 PM
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How are Initiation costs handled? Are they just a straight Karma=BP conversion or do you adjust the cost in some manner?

I like the idea of potentially having lots of skill points to play with; I like playing Awakened characters but always felt like I was being punished for trying to squeeze more than a single point or two of arcana and enchanting into a build along with staples like dodge and etiquette.
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FrankTrollman
post Nov 14 2007, 10:45 PM
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Initiation costs are a straight port. Note that this makes the cost of super charging your Edge to 7 (20 BP) pretty similar to supercharging your Magic to 7 (13 BP for an Initiation Grade and 10 BP for the Magic point).

Note that as described in Street Magic it is the reduction in Initiation Grade costs which are rounded up, not the costs themselves (a lot of people get that one confused). So if you undergo an ordeal and are in a group for your first initiation it costs you 7 points to get that first grade (13 * .4 = 5.2, rounded up to a cost reduction of 6).

Min/Max Advice:
A warning about the Dodge skill: as written on pages 142, 147, and 151 there is literally no time when you would be called upon to roll your Dodge skill where you would not be allowed to substitute either your Gymnastics or your Melee skill of choice. This means that any character who is already intent upon purchasing either Gymnastics or Unarmed Combat (or whatever) should from a game mechanical standpoint invest in the other skill instead of Dodge.

Dodge is a way for characters who have no interest in flipping out or kicking people in the face to have defense pools. That's not a house rule or anything, that's just how the combat system happens to pan out.

-Frank
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