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> October's Chat, Fresh from the chat today 10/18/08
Zolhex
post Oct 18 2008, 07:09 PM
Post #1


Project Terminus: Soul Hunters
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From: Casselberry, Florida U.S.A.
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Peter_Taylor> So down to business, welcome to the October Shadowrun Chat. This month we're not holding a "themed" chat but the developer (that would be me) and the freelancers will be taking any questions you might have - upcoming books, rules, or setting material.

Peter_Taylor> For those who haven't caught it yet, Arsenal errata has been posted to the Shadowrun4.com and more errata will be coming up in the next couple of weeks.

Peter_Taylor> Next up will likely be Augmentation, then Unwired which has recently gone into reprint.

Rotbart_van_Dainig: Will there be a new limited edition of the reworked (20th anniversary) SR4 main book?
Peter_Taylor> I cannot confirm nor deny anything at this point, except that we have some very big plans for next year.

Mystikk: What exactly will be the contents of the announced new Seattle book?
AdamJury> It will cover the entire city of Seattle and the surrounding areas, history, geography, criminal element, corporations, locations of interest, etc.

Game2BHappy: Any updates or ETAs since last month on the Shadowrun novels?
Peter_Taylor> Nothing at the moment. As soon as I have an update, look for an announcement on SR4.com

Kalvan: Well, a two part question to start things off. With Vice, 1: Will we finally see more about the structure of the Jo-Pak and how it/they relate(s) to the Seoulpa Rings? and 2: Is/are the Jo-Pak actually a real group or are it/they as fictional as the Rings? When I tried to look them up on Google all I got were results from Women's Boxing
Peter_Taylor> While Vice covers a wide range of groups from major syndicates to ethnic organizations to small gangs, the Jo-Pak aren't on the list of groups spotlighted this time round. They do get referenced but not developed. To answer your other query the name derives from the terms used for criminal gangs in Korean.

Coldan: There are rumors about a total remake of a chapter in the core rules. Any information about this?
Peter_Taylor> Strangely enough I haven't any such rumors.

Rotbart_van_Dainig: The errataed Arsenal vehicle sensor attribute rules still rely on the rating of sensors. Any hints on the main book errata on sensors for the impatient?
Peter_Taylor> The errata'd Arsenal mechanics cover most bases, what will likely be tweaked in the basic book is that some sensor systems (and devices) that currently don't have a rating will get a rating (in cameras for instance this Rating will simply equate to "modification" slots for additional enhancements)

Ryu: [Feral Cities] Which Karavan in Central Asia? The Asian map service I used found four...
Peter_Taylor> Neither of them... You'll really have to wait and see. It's one of the many cool ideas and settings that is going to make Feral Cities rock.

F4.0: Any ETA on the e-books mentioned in last month's chat, such as the NYC section?
Peter_Taylor> We've hit a slight speedbump on NYC but we're working on resolving it. We hope to have the first e-book out very soon.

Tycho: If you use 2 Weapons at once, the dice pool is divided by 2, modifier are added afterwards. What about Specializations and other Bonus Dice?
Peter_Taylor> Specializations and bonus dice count as dice pool modifiers.

Ryu: [Feral Cities] Follow-up blind shot: A honest-to-good Karavan OF PEOPLE???
Peter_Taylor> You're getting warmer...

Rotbart_van_Dainig: Is Riposte still considered an interrupt action? Because that term vanished with the errata. Does the errata write up intend to limit ripostes per turn to N+1 actions available? What about Throw and Finishing Move?
Peter_Taylor> "Interrupt actions" will be addressed in SR4 errata and will be clarified that they all work like Full Defense.

Kalvan: With Running Wild, will there be any really new critters?
Peter_Taylor> Yes. However, I'll be frank and say that we've already got a huge number of beasties to update. That said this book will definitely include paracritters, cybered critters, biodrones, toxic critters and other oddities you've never seen before.

Mystikk: With the errata now coming up - when will updated PDFs be available?
AdamJury> We don't have solid dates for them, but now that we're back on DriveThruRPG/RPGNow, they're being worked on. Perhaps as we type ...

Tycho: the German Arsenal 2070 features some additional equipment, will that be published in English as well?
Peter_Taylor> Yes. In what form remains to be seen. One thing I can guarantee is that this time round the German Arsenal material was all vetted by myself and the German developer, so you won't be getting by the "Germans do it better" syndrome you saw in older books.

Game2BHappy: How is the production of NY Missions coming along? "Improvements" to future missions were hinted at earlier - anything specific we can look forward to?
Peter_Taylor> Slower than we would like but it's coming along - speedbumps and all. The improvements that were mentioned in previous chats refer to higher production quality and better integration with the wider setting. We'll be making more announcements when we have something to announce.

F4.0: Can we get any info on how long the various entries will be in Feral cities, or how many pages the book will be?
Peter_Taylor> The two primary sprawls highlighted in Feral Cities, Chicago and Lagos, get about the same page count as the equivalents in Runner Havens and Corporate Enclaves. The remaining sections are brief overviews of five sprawls - Bogotá. Geneva, GeMiTo, Karavan, and Sarajevo - all of which are feral flashpoints in several storylines (for instance Bogotá ties directly into the aftermath of Ghost Cartels and Geneva ties into Emergence and Unwired).

NotAFanboy: After banishing a spirit, can a magician rebind the spirit if the type of spirit is unavailable to his tradition?
Peter_Taylor> Under the current rules yes. I believe it is called the Pokemon tactic among some fans.

Casazil: from one of my players It says in Street Magic that Adversary shamans must perform a test in order to take an action that goes against their interests. I'd like to know if you can choose to fail that test rather than rolling for it.
Peter_Taylor> No. The rule is intended to force him to commit to an action even though it goes against his interests. Otherwise he would always opt out.

Ryu: A long one on Clusters, if there is time and the errata doesn’t address it:[Unwired]Clusters. What happens if a device looses it’s wireless connection to the rest of the cluster (say, due to a smart jammer? Specifically: Does the cluster continue to exist, with a slightly (usually inconsequential) reduction of the processor/persona limit? I assume yes. What happens to the device? Is it automatically accessible as a single node? If not, what would one need to do to achieve that? Would you have to spoof a disband command? When the wireless connection is regained, does the device become a part of the cluster again? If yes, can you tamper with the rather defenseless single device, and gain access rights on the cluster later (as the cluster inherits all device node accounts)? If no, how long does it take to rebuild the cluster (relevant for communications clusters)?
Peter_Taylor> A couple of tweaks to the Clusters rules will be in the Unwired errata we'll be posting soon.

Tycho: Will the Karma Generation Rules will get an errata, because under current rules this "no BP for race" cause a little trouble.
Peter_Taylor> The Karma Gen rules take into account the fact that raising Attributes with Karma means that it is prohibitively costly for metahumans to raise certain Attributes to the levels possible with the BP system. The lack of racial cost does not affect the fact that racial minimums and maximums are set and that only half your points may be spent on Attributes. That said it is likely that a couple of other aspects of Karma Gen will be errata'd.

Tycho: There are rules to attack a focus with spells or astral combat, but no rules what happens with the focus (like how the focus soak and other thing). Will there be are errata or FAQ?
Peter_Taylor> This issue will be addressed as errata.

Fuchs: Unwired: Can you buy pirated programs at Char gen?
Peter_Taylor> It depends entirely on your game. If your group allows second-hand cyberware, or modified vehicles and weapons, then it makes sense to allow pirated wares at creation. We made no ruling either way, because this is left to the group.

Ryu: Any plans with the greater Constantinople region? Not exactly stable, that one, and I have a group there.
Peter_Taylor> Not immediate plans, but plans nonetheless. Sarajevo in Feral Cities offers some foreshadowing.

Rotbart_van_Dainig: What aspects of karma gen will be errata'd? Is it really intended that meta-variants, AIs, Free Spirits and sapient critters are free, too?
Peter_Taylor> No the advanced character options will be given a "rarity" cost.

Tycho: "First, the Awakened comprise the smallest minority of the world’s population. Less than one percent of the Sixth World’s populace even has the potential to use magic. Of that one percent, only a fraction has the training, focus, or discipline to use it effectively; the rest either go mad trying or spend their entire lives ignorant of the power at their fingertips." (SM p.22) Does this paragraph state, that a majority of the awakened population gets mad or cannot make anything with their gift?
Peter_Taylor> It could be clearer since it doesn't state how big the "fraction" is, but the number that goes insane is definitely a minority (though larger than most people will admit.

Casazil: From another player will there be any additional focus on IE's?
Peter_Taylor> I think it's safe to say that the IEs aren't completely out of the picture. With SR4 we've purposefully avoided metaplots and characters that carry a lot of luggage (like the IEs). We don't want to go scaring away new players or giving them the idea that you need 10 out-of-print books to catch up on the full story. That said the IEs and the secret history are part of the setting and I wouldn't be surprised if they reared their head soon enough...

Tycho: Are there any plans with the development of Europe or will you leave that (complete or partial) to the local publisher (French and German)?
Peter_Taylor> Well, our recent location books have all featured European locations, and so will Feral Cities (2 in fact) so I think its safe to say that we won't be leaving it entirely up to the local licenses (particularly not since I'm based in Europe). However, you'll see tighter coordination in the future and we'll be working together to develop new material.

F4.0: Any information forth coming on the structure of the Laesa syndicate?
Peter_Taylor> Laesa is mentioned but does not get an in-depth profile in Vice. We definitely didn't want to limit ourselves to Seattle and its criminal operations (though we do spotlight a couple that have had major changes following events in "Ghost Cartels"). That said you'll probably see more on Laesa in Seattle 2072.

Ryu: Which is the third great dragon behind Amazonia? (Sirrurg and Hualpa being a given)
Peter_Taylor> The third dragon is known locally as M'Boi and all I can say about him/her is that he/she does not appear to be one of the known greats.

hermit: Will there be an update on the Tir settings in the foreseeable time?
Peter_Taylor> Yes.

Kalvan: I know you aren't with this part of the license, but is there any new word on Post-Microsoft Shadowrun videogames or movies?
Peter_Taylor> Not really no.

Casazil: Would one said speedbump be the loss of John Dunn? And have you found someone to take over for him yet?
Peter_Taylor> Yes. It is related to John stepping down, but that's all I can say on the subject for the moment aside that we're working on getting things back on track ASAP.

NotAFanboy: how much information does a Technomancer have to have in order to send a sleuth sprite off to find someone? Or can it always find him given enough time?
Peter_Taylor> The Technomancer must know enough about the target for the sprite to be able to distinguish the individual from someone else (for instance a name would not suffice).

NotAFanboy: Also what if the person's only matrix connection is offline from the main Matrix? i.e. in a Renraku corp. facility etc
Peter_Taylor> The Resonance works in mysterious ways, but I'd say it would be difficult to locate in this instance.

Coldan: RC: There is a modifier mentioned at the group contacts with +8 at the members (within the text and the examples on Dumpshock). But the table only references a modifier with +8. Which one is the highest modifier?
Peter_Taylor> The correct modifier is +6. The text will be errata'd and the posting to DSF was (as I mentioned at the time) based on an earlier, unedited draft.

Kor: can a technomancers machine sprite inhabit a smartlinked gun and if so what dp bonus can it provide
Peter_Taylor> I was waiting for this all chat. Yes, a machine sprite can inhabit any Device including a gun's smartlink system. The issue is whether it's Diagnostics power will assist in someone firing the gun and whether that constitutes "using" the device per the power description.
Peter_Taylor> This will be addressed in upcoming errata to the Diagnostics power is all I can say at the moment
Peter_Taylor> The current rules could be interpreted as allowing this though depending on how your gamemaster defines "use of a device."

Rotbart_van_Dainig: Will the Empathy Sensorsoft (and the Emotitoy) remain to be the ultimate dice pool escalation?
Peter_Taylor> No. I'll get to it. Once my desk clears of all the other priority stuff.

Kalvan: Why isn't Black Hat a Dissonant Paragon?
Peter_Taylor> Because it's goals are not truly dissonant.

Ryu: Who is "He who howls under a moonless sky", Threats pg. 14? (Other than "The Loon" of Alamos20k). Thais?
Peter_Taylor> To be honest, it's more likely whoever we chose it to be when we pick up that particular thread again... but I'll ask the author if I ever meet him.

Kor: Will hacking see the incorporation of an attribute stat in the future? Seems odd that a logic 1 char with good programs and coms can hack as well as a logic 6
Peter_Taylor> All the rules options for Hacking are now available in either the corebook and Unwired. The default Shadowrun4 paradigm is that no matter what your intellectual abilities are, it’s your programs and hardware that are actually interfacing with the Matrix. Your intellectual capacities have very little to do with it since what matters is your ability to manipulate code with code. While this means that anyone with enough money can afford to hack, the software degradation rules mean that should a script kiddie want to hack his high-rating software to avoid leaving a trace they will begin to degrade and he won't be able to keep up with true hackers who program their own software and patches, and are networked with the Cracker Underground.

Kor: Will hacking see the incorporation of an attribute stat in the future? Seems odd that a logic 1 char with good programs and coms can hack as well as a logic 6
Peter_Taylor> Logic comes in when programming, patching and developing software which all define the difference between a hacker and a script kiddie.

Kor: Will hacking see the incorporation of an attribute stat in the future? Seems odd that a logic 1 char with good programs and coms can hack as well as a logic 6
Peter_Taylor> That said the Pirated Software and Degradation rules as well as the options available to hackers (and not necessarily script kiddies) will be clarified and expanded in Unwired errata.

hermit: Speaking of Thais, will there be an update on him and the Naga Kingdom? Has it gone to hell yet?
Peter_Taylor> Actually I do have plans for this but with our crowded 2009 Anniversary schedule it might take a while to get to it.

Ryu: [Unwired/FAQ] If you spoof an order to "slave to master device to XXX" (with XXX likely "me") (legal according to the FAQ), do you automatically get Admin Access (as per the Slaving rules), or do you still need to exploit the node to make use of it’s "willingness to listen"?
Peter_Taylor> You still need to Exploit.

Kalvan: In other words, if you want a return to system breaking on the fly and true netrunner to netrunner cybercombat, you'
Peter_Taylor> If you dislike the default Matrix paradigm, "Unwired" presents several official options in the Tweaking the Rules section.

hermit: And the obligatory question about Shadows of South America ... is there light at the end of that tunnel?
Peter_Taylor> Yes. But it could be a train.

Coldan: What amount of time do you really need in an extended test with an interval of months? Can you go on runs, while you also code some new programs?
Peter_Taylor> Yes. Extended Tests take into account that you have time to take a break and return to work. However an interval of a day still means that the work takes 24 hours work to complete (even if its not 24 consecutive hours at the workspace)

NotAFanboy: Can possession spirits interact with the matrix when sleeved?
Peter_Taylor> No. Their astral sense impairs their ability to perceive AR and lacking a human brain they cannot process/interpret simsense signals. Inhabiting spirits as all naturally dual natured critters though can tune out the astral sense enough to perceive and use the Matrix.

Ryu: Can you order another device to change it’s access ID? This would handily get rid of any current subscriptions of that device, but is only explicit for your own commlink.
Peter_Taylor> No access ID is hardwired to the hardware.

Peter_Taylor> Okay we're going to have to wrap in a couple of minutes

Peter_Taylor> before we go though, we'd like to announce that Ghost Cartels is officially off to press

Peter_Taylor> and that you should look for previews on the website in the next few days.

AdamJury> or in the next few... seconds. ghostcartels_preview1
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