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> List of spells affected by the 4A OR table.
The Mack
post Mar 19 2009, 06:00 PM
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As there's not been much response if it was specifically intended to make it ludicrously harder for all magic to affect technology, I thought I'd go ahead and post a list of spells that will basically be hosed by the new 4A OR table.

Chaos
Chaotic World
Trid Entertainment
Improved Invisibility
Physical Mask
Trid Phantasm
Silence
Stealth
Ignite
Ram
Wreck
Demolish
Animate
Mass Animate
Bind
Net
Fix
Glue
Glue Strip
Lock
Pulse


That's a pretty long list of spells that can basically be tossed in the trash if you want to affect anything other than piƱatas.
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Zormal
post Mar 19 2009, 06:12 PM
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That's a pretty big list.

It's a wonder nobody put up a poll about the new OR changes. I think this changes spellcasting a lot more than the changes with Direct Combat Spell Drain. The dice pool to reliably affect OR6 is *ginormous*, though I guess this was the point.
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DireRadiant
post Mar 19 2009, 06:28 PM
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Electronic Equipment includes cameras and most sensor devices, so it's only a bump from OR 3 to OR 4 for the physical illusions. The Drones and Vehicles going from OR 4 to OR 6 is the really big hit.

Personally I think it's a good thing making it more difficult. Just overcast....
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The Mack
post Mar 19 2009, 06:32 PM
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QUOTE (DireRadiant @ Mar 20 2009, 03:28 AM) *
Electronic Equipment includes cameras and most sensor devices, so it's only a bump from OR 3 to OR 4 for the physical illusions. The Drones and Vehicles going from OR 4 to OR 6 is the really big hit.


Right so basically, if you want to be an illusion focused mage, you need 12 dice after character creation to be basically only semi-reliable at what you do.

Never mind that you're not going to be affecting drones. Not with Illusions. Not with Physical Manipulations.

QUOTE (DireRadiant @ Mar 20 2009, 03:28 AM) *
Personally I think it's a good thing making it more difficult. Just overcast....


Are you actually serious? You think encouraging overcasting is a good idea?


Do you really think this is fun for the magician player who wants to play something other than a combat spell slinging mage?

Or for players who don't want to be forced into constantly overcasting?


If overcasting becomes the norm, there is something wrong with the system
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Zormal
post Mar 19 2009, 06:45 PM
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Well... overcasting alone is not enough. You also need a bigger dice pool.

And like somebody pointed out, everyone and their mother will now want to have a cheap drone looking over their shoulder (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

"Hey!? Wha...!? What's wrong with my fix spell... Drek... I guess it's time to learn motorcycle mechanics."
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knasser
post Mar 19 2009, 06:50 PM
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QUOTE (Zormal @ Mar 19 2009, 06:45 PM) *
And like somebody pointed out, everyone and their mother will now want to have a cheap drone looking over their shoulder (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)


That was one of the first things that I thought of too. What gimps the PCs will gimp the NPCs, and players don't have the same respect for flavour and balance that GM's do: they'll all have a microdrone plugged into their AR contacts and programmed to sound an alarm the moment it spots someone on one that isn't on the other. No more invisible NPCs unless you fudge the dice (which I refuse to).

K.
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olddogtree
post Mar 19 2009, 07:29 PM
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Personally, I'm not buying the new Shadowrun rules set, and it has already been decided not to use the new rules.
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WeaverMount
post Mar 19 2009, 07:38 PM
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QUOTE
Do you really think this is fun for the magician player who wants to play something other than a combat spell slinging mage?

Illusions are hardly the only other choice for a mage. Conjuring is much much better buy BP/wise than Sorcery. This increased OR is actually my favorite thing about the new rules. First off it gives you a reason to bother with the environmental spells. Mist and Shadow are pretty worthless compared to the stealth spells .... except that now they work vs drones. Similarly ice slick. Similarly back when you could just mass animate the three squad cars fallowing you why bother with an icy slick. I think this actually /increase/ rather than decrease the number of viable spells.


now if only drones didn't slapped silly by the nerf bat
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DireRadiant
post Mar 19 2009, 07:54 PM
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You might want to consider spells affecting a Drone Sensor System as going against an electronic device rather then affecting the Drone directly.
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TKDNinjaInBlack
post Mar 19 2009, 08:29 PM
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You guys are forgetting that magicians use all kinds of tricks to augment their dice pools, so this isn't that big of a problem. Everyone cites the magic attribute and their skill to make the dice pool, but we are forgetting a wide variety of other pools that can add to any of these tests. Mentor Spirits, Foci, Edge, Bound Spirit Aid Sorcery, any starting magician who knows the rules also knows that upping the OR threshold isn't scary or even asking that much.

Here's an example for you guys. Casting an illusion to work on a drone, OR threshold of 6

Very low level mage;

Magic 3
Spellcasting 3
Bound Spirit Force 3
Mentor Spirit (any of the following: cat, moon maiden, seductress, trickster) +2 to illusion spells
Spellcasting focus Rating 3

That's already a dice pool of 14 which statistically will give you 4 hits. If you even have an edge attribute of 1 and use edge, things drastically change. Throw that in the pool for 15 dice and now you are statistically hitting 5 dice with a chance to re-roll sixes. If you use your edge point to re-roll non hits instead of adding to the pool, you now get to re-roll 10 dice and have a chance of statistical chance of 3 more hits.

This of course is a basic magic level 3 magician. I've never played with anyone who started with magic lower than 4 let alone a spellcasting skill lower than 4 as well. Remembering the bonuses for aid sorcery from bound spirits, foci and mentor spirits before we even think about edge and you can see why this change doesn't make things all that much harder at all.
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Draco18s
post Mar 19 2009, 08:58 PM
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QUOTE (TKDNinjaInBlack @ Mar 19 2009, 03:29 PM) *
That's already a dice pool of 14 which statistically will give you 4 hits. If you even have an edge attribute of 1 and use edge, things drastically change. Throw that in the pool for 15 dice and now you are statistically hitting 5 dice with a chance to re-roll sixes.


Fail. You use your 1 edge to reroll failures. Exploding 6s only help statistically if your Dice Pool is 18+

You also forgot that at Magic 3 in order to effect a camera he needs to overcast (force 4) and to effect a drone he needs to overcast to maximum effectiveness (force 6).
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Adarael
post Mar 19 2009, 09:05 PM
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Re: edge and 18+

Not fail. It does not 'only help statistically if your DP is 18+'.

I believe what you mean to say is that it does not statistically help AS MUCH as rerolling failures.
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Zormal
post Mar 19 2009, 09:25 PM
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QUOTE (TKDNinjaInBlack @ Mar 19 2009, 10:29 PM) *
You guys are forgetting that magicians use all kinds of tricks to augment their dice pools, so this isn't that big of a problem.

That's true. I just wish I wouldn't have to min-max to get usage out of my mages.

...but that's what houserules are for, so I shouldn't complain too much. Many people seem to like the changes.

Edit: Maybe min-maxing isn't the right term, here... But you get what I mean. With the new rules, you have to make every effort to get your dice pool way up high, and then you end up being way too powerful with everything that doesn't have a OR.
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Dunsany
post Mar 19 2009, 09:46 PM
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QUOTE (TKDNinjaInBlack @ Mar 19 2009, 03:29 PM) *
You guys are forgetting that magicians use all kinds of tricks to augment their dice pools, so this isn't that big of a problem. Everyone cites the magic attribute and their skill to make the dice pool, but we are forgetting a wide variety of other pools that can add to any of these tests. Mentor Spirits, Foci, Edge, Bound Spirit Aid Sorcery, any starting magician who knows the rules also knows that upping the OR threshold isn't scary or even asking that much.

Here's an example for you guys. Casting an illusion to work on a drone, OR threshold of 6

Very low level mage;

Magic 3
Spellcasting 3
Bound Spirit Force 3
Mentor Spirit (any of the following: cat, moon maiden, seductress, trickster) +2 to illusion spells
Spellcasting focus Rating 3

That's already a dice pool of 14 which statistically will give you 4 hits. If you even have an edge attribute of 1 and use edge, things drastically change. Throw that in the pool for 15 dice and now you are statistically hitting 5 dice with a chance to re-roll sixes. If you use your edge point to re-roll non hits instead of adding to the pool, you now get to re-roll 10 dice and have a chance of statistical chance of 3 more hits.

This of course is a basic magic level 3 magician. I've never played with anyone who started with magic lower than 4 let alone a spellcasting skill lower than 4 as well. Remembering the bonuses for aid sorcery from bound spirits, foci and mentor spirits before we even think about edge and you can see why this change doesn't make things all that much harder at all.


Actually this is the issue exactly. You created a mage that will be able to get an OR4 slightly better than 50% of the time for illusion spells. And they have a *significant* investment in doing so. Also, keep in mind that this same character can almost never use a non-illusion spell on technological devices at all. Now, I'm not saying that mages should be able to use magic on technology easily, but what I am saying is that OR4 is hardly trivial. Every example so far has had a character with investments in making themselves good at illusions that barely break even on the rolls to get a threshold of 4, never mind a threshold of 6.

We can do intellectual exercises all day long about how high these die pools can get, but if we disregard the cost of getting that die pool then what is the point? You cannot have a discussion of balance without first factoring in what else they could be getting with that same investment. Your above example is a character that has spent 12 karma and 45,000 nuyen on a spellcasting focus (and has bound it as one of only three that the character can bind). This same mage has spent 1500 nuyen on a bound spirit and used at least one of its services on an Aid Sorcery action for whichever spell the character wanted to cast and needs to spend another service on each subsequent spell. Not a bad investment, but still an expense nonetheless. Finally, this character chose a positive quality of a mentor spirit that comes with a disadvantage and a +2 on two different die pools, one being illusions. And yet after all this they don't even come close to being able to reliably use illusion magic without Edge.
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knasser
post Mar 19 2009, 09:59 PM
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QUOTE (Zormal @ Mar 19 2009, 09:25 PM) *
That's true. I just wish I wouldn't have to min-max to get usage out of my mages.

...but that's what houserules are for, so I shouldn't complain too much. Many people seem to like the changes.

Edit: Maybe min-maxing isn't the right term, here... But you get what I mean. With the new rules, you have to make every effort to get your dice pool way up high, and then you end up being way too powerful with everything that doesn't have a OR.


What gets me is that you have to min-max so much to be good at something that isn't combat but actually more used for imaginative ways to avoid it. If anything, I'd prefer it the other way around. I like players making good use of Illusions. Given the importance that is placed on combat ability, I can't see many players giving up Boom-Power for min-maxing their Illusion dice pool. It was always a second string to your bow thing, but now that second string has become much more expensive. : (
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Mikado
post Mar 19 2009, 10:04 PM
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QUOTE (The Mack @ Mar 19 2009, 01:32 PM) *
If overcasting becomes the norm, there is something wrong with the system

No, if overcasting becomes the norm SR5 will include rules to prevent overcasting.
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Blade
post Mar 20 2009, 11:36 AM
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So mundanes being useless against spirits is ok, but mages being useless against drones is broken?
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Dakka Dakka
post Mar 20 2009, 12:09 PM
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QUOTE (Blade @ Mar 20 2009, 12:36 PM) *
So mundanes being useless against spirits is ok, but mages being useless against drones is broken?
Hmm a mundane fares pretty well against sprits up to Force 5 with a Predator IV and Stick-n-Shock ammo. He only needs one net hit to affect it. Of course a mundane could also load SnS into a bigger gun. Shotguns are good up to force 7 and a Barrett up to 9. Stronger spirits or weaker weapons just need more net hits. But any mage how can either count on soaking 18+ drain or desperate enough to try no matter the ability should wipe the floor with most mooks. At least that's my opinion.
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hermit
post Mar 20 2009, 01:04 PM
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QUOTE
What gimps the PCs will gimp the NPCs, and players don't have the same respect for flavour and balance that GM's do: they'll all have a microdrone plugged into their AR contacts and programmed to sound an alarm the moment it spots someone on one that isn't on the other.

That would require a simrig and an agent with Edit to compare, but yes, viable build. Of course, this also means you just have to give your NPC mage a focus to raise DP, and make the stealthy types have appropriate Totems/Paragons. A Turtle shaman with a Lv. 4 focus and maxed magic/sorcery will have a DP of 18 out of the box. Pretty viable he gets the invisibility right if he means it and doesn't fail his roll utterly.

Still, yes, this takes mage characters down a bit. However, there are plenty ways to counter the everybody security drones.

However, this can easily be limited by having, say, police patrol drones hover about and check drones for their respective ID (and advertising license, which agency they belong to, and for a short uplink with the drone operator because this is an MCT exclusive advert zone ... I doupt with the additional hassle this generates, the personal invisibility detector droneswill be much of a problem.

What's the problem here, anyway? Magic isn't the be-all end-all invincible means it used to be with unrecvised SR4? OH MY. Ram and other anti-vehicle spells are back at the low effectiveness they were in SR3? OH MY. Suddenly, the mage needs hacker backup! What a broken group game where you actually have to play as a group.

This again convinces me the changes are right as they are. It takes mages back to the grund and does not make them as superhuman as SR4 foolishly (and, I think, without intending to) made them when conceived.
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Blade
post Mar 20 2009, 02:25 PM
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QUOTE (Dakka Dakka @ Mar 20 2009, 01:09 PM) *
Hmm a mundane fares pretty well against sprits up to Force 5 with a Predator IV and Stick-n-Shock ammo. He only needs one net hit to affect it. Of course a mundane could also load SnS into a bigger gun. Shotguns are good up to force 7 and a Barrett up to 9. Stronger spirits or weaker weapons just need more net hits. But any mage how can either count on soaking 18+ drain or desperate enough to try no matter the ability should wipe the floor with most mooks. At least that's my opinion.


According to Boyle when he was still lead dev (or was it Synner before he was?), SnS AP modifiers don't apply to spirits.
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Dakka Dakka
post Mar 20 2009, 03:01 PM
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Why wouldn't it? Do APDS and Ex-Explosive rounds work as intended? Do Flamethrower weapons work? This sounds pretty arbitrary to me. The spirits have hardenend armor against mundane attacks, thus 2/3s of their soak pool is treated like armor and can be reduced by the attack.
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The Mack
post Mar 20 2009, 03:40 PM
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QUOTE (Blade @ Mar 20 2009, 08:36 PM) *
So mundanes being useless against spirits is ok, but mages being useless against drones is broken?


For one thing, they aren't useless against Spirits. They don't need 18+ dice to toss at them either, they just need to buy powerful weapons.

For another, unless you're playing in a magic heavy game, drones are generally significantly more common than spirits, at least in my experience.

We're also not talking about killing drones. We're talking about 2 classes of spells, inadvertently nerfed by the OR change. Which myself and others believe was primarily done to nerf Direct Combat spells in order to make indirect combat spells more appealing.

So basically, 3 groups of spells: Physical Illusions, Physical Manipulation & Direct Combat spells - all get to suffer so that the poorly designed Indirect Combat spells would appear as the better of two poor options, as well as with the intent to keep the spell design rules in Street Magic intact.

That's why this fix feels hamfisted.

That's why a lot of people are griping about it.
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Dunsany
post Mar 20 2009, 04:06 PM
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QUOTE (hermit @ Mar 20 2009, 08:04 AM) *
What's the problem here, anyway? Magic isn't the be-all end-all invincible means it used to be with unrecvised SR4? OH MY. Ram and other anti-vehicle spells are back at the low effectiveness they were in SR3? OH MY. Suddenly, the mage needs hacker backup! What a broken group game where you actually have to play as a group.


This statement is exactly what we are arguing against. You make this claim that magic under SR4 is some incredibly powerful thing that has no downside, cost or counter. This claim is utterly ridiculous as has been shown with countless examples, many by people arguing on your own side. You cannot reasonably argue that magic is "overpowered" and at the same time ignore all of its weaknesses.

The OR change makes some spells unusable. Before all of these spells were difficult to use if you were actually playing the game by the rules (again, if you ignored the weaknesses before, why wouldn't you ignore those same weaknesses now?) Specialists could do them about half the time or slightly better but mages need significant investments in whatever group of spells they wanted to be able to cast to do them effectively. Now even specialists will need to use Edge in order to do these spells.

Making claims that mages "suddenly" need backup whereas before they did not is, simply put, idiotic. Are there mages running around that can do everything? Be sure to point them out to me, since I've not been given an example of one yet. All I've seen are examples of characters that have spent a bunch of karma and nuyen on "suddenly" being almost entirely ineffective at their chosen role. With an infinite amount of karma and no limit on the amount of nuyen you can spend everything in the game is imbalanced. Magic happens to be no exception to this rule.


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TKDNinjaInBlack
post Mar 20 2009, 04:26 PM
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QUOTE (The Mack @ Mar 20 2009, 09:40 AM) *
For one thing, they aren't useless against Spirits. They don't need 18+ dice to toss at them either, they just need to buy powerful weapons.


Let me frame in a different but albeit similar perspective;

For one thing, they (magicians) aren't useless against Drones. They just need to buy more powerful foci and binding materials for spirits.

(IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)

I mean, lets face it, every kind of class of character in Shadowrun is going to augment their dice pools by bonuses from one thing or another. Combat characters augment their abilities with cyberware, and weapon upgrades. Social characters use various ware as well. Hell, even riggers and hackers use tons of little bonuses to jump their pools up. With magical bonuses and gear, magicians aren't left behind, they just have to suck up their pride and use tools to augment their abilities just like the rest of the characters.
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The Mack
post Mar 20 2009, 04:33 PM
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QUOTE (TKDNinjaInBlack @ Mar 21 2009, 01:26 AM) *
Let me frame in a different but albeit similar perspective;

For one thing, they (magicians) aren't useless against Drones. They just need to buy more powerful foci and binding materials for spirits.

(IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)

I mean, lets face it, every kind of class of character in Shadowrun is going to augment their dice pools by bonuses from one thing or another. Combat characters augment their abilities with cyberware, and weapon upgrades. Social characters use various ware as well. Hell, even riggers and hackers use tons of little bonuses to jump their pools up. With magical bonuses and gear, magicians aren't left behind, they just have to suck up their pride and use tools to augment their abilities just like the rest of the characters.


I know you're being facetious, but buying a powerful gun is not the same as trying to generate 18 Dice for a spellcasting test that will get you a 50/50 chance of actually affecting a drone with a spell specifically designed to affect technology.


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