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> Vehicle/Drone Stats, Devices on the Matrix
Freejack
post Jan 17 2010, 04:01 PM
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Given that a drone (for instance) is a device on the Matrix, it should have a System/Signal/Firewall/Response. I'm having a bit of a problem trying to find out where these stats are derived.

The reason for the question is that the example characters, Drone Rigger and Smuggler both have vehicles and drones (with Pilot instead of System) with assigned numbers.

If I check out the Sample Device Ratings table, the drones should be a 3 and the vehicle a 4. But in addition, this also seems to imply that vehicles can have specific hardware and OS's installed and that they can be hacked to improve ratings just like a commlink.

As a rigger, I'd expect to find forums on Ares hardware and OS with details on how it interfaces and possibly hacks on how to improve the devices, similarly to hackers and commlinks with hardware modules and OS patching.

This is just my attempt to get my head wrapped around the provided rules. The main question though is as above. Where do the stats listed in the example characters come from?

Thanks.

Carl
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Saint Sithney
post Jan 17 2010, 04:31 PM
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System and Firewall are handled by the Pilot rating. The Response is generally 3 for civilian drones/vehicles and 4 for security drones/vehicles. I imagine signal would follow be the same suit as response, but I can't find that table...
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jan 17 2010, 04:35 PM
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QUOTE (Saint Sithney @ Jan 17 2010, 09:31 AM) *
System and Firewall are handled by the Pilot rating. The Response is generally 3 for civilian drones/vehicles and 4 for security drones/vehicles. I imagine signal would follow be the same suit as response, but I can't find that table...



Or you go with Device Ratings of

3 Civilian
4 Security
5-6 Military

And upgrade them independent of the Vehicle's Pilot Rating


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Freejack
post Jan 17 2010, 04:41 PM
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That's pretty much where I was leaning toward but I was also looking for a spot where it said that plus the potential for hacks. If I'm going to take over a drone at the Met (for example), I have to know the stats on how to get in to the device and take over. Sure, I can just write them down and say "see, that's the stats", but that doesn't tell where they were derived from.

Thanks for the quick responses though (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Carl
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jan 17 2010, 04:43 PM
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QUOTE (Freejack @ Jan 17 2010, 09:41 AM) *
That's pretty much where I was leaning toward but I was also looking for a spot where it said that plus the potential for hacks. If I'm going to take over a drone at the Met (for example), I have to know the stats on how to get in to the device and take over. Sure, I can just write them down and say "see, that's the stats", but that doesn't tell where they were derived from.

Thanks for the quick responses though (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Carl


Always glad to help...

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Freejack
post Jan 17 2010, 04:53 PM
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And the Signal Rating Table (sr4a.222) can provide a default signal as well with microdrone at 2, vehicles at 3, and drone crawlers at 4. So again, I can derive a set of stats by gathering them from other places.

GMC Step Van- Response 2 (derived from Pilot/System as they have to match), Signal 3 (from the Signal Rating Table), Pilot 2 (from the description), Firewall 3 (from the Sample Devices table as a table of last resort).

The problem here is that it doesn't match the stats in the sample characters (4, 4, 4, 4).

Of course you can improve the stats based on the tables on sr4a.228 so I can create a Firewall and upgrade the hardware and software (it does say under the Coding Table that Pilot is improvable).

It's just that most of the information on all the Samples are picked out of the book from the listing of gear with the Commlinks of a couple (Hacker) being hacked and upgraded. Without a starting place for the vehicles and drones, do I start them all the way I described above? Derive the initial stats and then have the players improve the hardware and software? And that doesn't match up with the costs listed (although I haven't validated the commlink cost... next thing to check (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif) ).

Carl
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jan 17 2010, 04:57 PM
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QUOTE (Freejack @ Jan 17 2010, 09:53 AM) *
And the Signal Rating Table (sr4a.222) can provide a default signal as well with microdrone at 2, vehicles at 3, and drone crawlers at 4. So again, I can derive a set of stats by gathering them from other places.

GMC Step Van- Response 2 (derived from Pilot/System as they have to match), Signal 3 (from the Signal Rating Table), Pilot 2 (from the description), Firewall 3 (from the Sample Devices table as a table of last resort).

The problem here is that it doesn't match the stats in the sample characters (4, 4, 4, 4).

Of course you can improve the stats based on the tables on sr4a.228 so I can create a Firewall and upgrade the hardware and software (it does say under the Coding Table that Pilot is improvable).

It's just that most of the information on all the Samples are picked out of the book from the listing of gear with the Commlinks of a couple (Hacker) being hacked and upgraded. Without a starting place for the vehicles and drones, do I start them all the way I described above? Derive the initial stats and then have the players improve the hardware and software?

Carl



As Above... We stat the System, Response and Firewall according to the Device Rating COmparison... SIgnal is obtained as you indicated as well, and then the Pilot Rating is Plugged in... Most Vehicles start with a Pilot of 3 IIRC... which works well for the Cvilian Device Rating of 3... as for Signal, it stays equal to the equivalent vehicle stat unless upgraded...Pilot rating is standard...

Of Course, all of these can be upgraded...

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Freejack
post Jan 17 2010, 05:00 PM
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QUOTE (Tymeaus Jalynsfein @ Jan 17 2010, 09:57 AM) *
As Above... We stat the System, Response and Firewall according to the Device Rating COmparison... SIgnal is obtained as you indicated as well, and then the Pilot Rating is Plugged in... Most Vehicles start with a Pilot of 3 IIRC... which works well for the Cvilian Device Rating of 3... as for Signal, it stays equal to the equivalent vehicle stat unless upgraded...Pilot rating is standard...

Of Course, all of these can be upgraded...

Keep the Faith


Actually I believe most groundcraft are Pilot of 2 and there are a couple of other vehicles that have a zero Pilot (the combat walkers I think; 0 Pilot, 10 Body). The GMC Stepvan has a Pilot of 2 as well which doesn't quite match the Standard Device Rating table (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Carl
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jan 17 2010, 05:23 PM
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QUOTE (Freejack @ Jan 17 2010, 10:00 AM) *
Actually I believe most groundcraft are Pilot of 2 and there are a couple of other vehicles that have a zero Pilot (the combat walkers I think; 0 Pilot, 10 Body). The GMC Stepvan has a Pilot of 2 as well which doesn't quite match the Standard Device Rating table (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Carl



Ah Well... Goes to show that I should have looked at the books...
But then again, I also tend to upgrade Piolot to 3 anyways on those that do not hit that threshold...

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Johnny Hammersti...
post Jan 18 2010, 01:35 AM
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I may be completely confused here, but aren't pilot and system 2 different things?

For example, a GMC step van is a normal vehicle and so has a device rating of 3. Signal, Firewall, System, Response, 3.

the agent it runs, its pilot, is 2.

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Freejack
post Jan 18 2010, 02:13 AM
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But that points to another issue then. For the Smuggler and Drone Rigger, the GMC Step-Van, the Eurocar Westwind, and the four drones all have stats of Pilot 4, Firewall 4, Signal 4, Response 4. None of them mention System.

In the description, Pilot is the "dog-brain computer". Not as powerful as a Commlink, just sufficient to do the job it's designed for (Peripheral Device sr4a.221). Sounds like hardware + firmware (using today's tech) vs hardware + operating system.

Looking at the upgrading table; the Pilot software has a higher threshold but takes less time to upgrade than System so it shouldn't be the same there either.

If we go with the default rating, it's Rating x 3 or 12 target for each stat at 3 months per attempt. Hardware/Software=4 + Logic at 4 that's 8 dice. Buying successes means it'll take 6 tries or 18 months to upgrade the hardware and write a new OS/Firewall. Rolling might get it done in a year or even less, certainly no quicker than 6 months. That's a year per stat for 5 vehicles. 20 years to get all up to 4/4/4/4? Seems unlikely.

Carl
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jan 18 2010, 02:37 AM
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QUOTE (Freejack @ Jan 17 2010, 07:13 PM) *
But that points to another issue then. For the Smuggler and Drone Rigger, the GMC Step-Van, the Eurocar Westwind, and the four drones all have stats of Pilot 4, Firewall 4, Signal 4, Response 4. None of them mention System.

In the description, Pilot is the "dog-brain computer". Not as powerful as a Commlink, just sufficient to do the job it's designed for (Peripheral Device sr4a.221). Sounds like hardware + firmware (using today's tech) vs hardware + operating system.

Looking at the upgrading table; the Pilot software has a higher threshold but takes less time to upgrade than System so it shouldn't be the same there either.

If we go with the default rating, it's Rating x 3 or 12 target for each stat at 3 months per attempt. Hardware/Software=4 + Logic at 4 that's 8 dice. Buying successes means it'll take 6 tries or 18 months to upgrade the hardware and write a new OS/Firewall. Rolling might get it done in a year or even less, certainly no quicker than 6 months. That's a year per stat for 5 vehicles. 20 years to get all up to 4/4/4/4? Seems unlikely.

Carl



Just a note... Pilot is not the same as System... Pilot is the same as an Agent... that may be where you are going wrong here...

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Freejack
post Jan 18 2010, 02:58 AM
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Not according to sr4a.245. The Drone Pilot program is similar to an Agent's Pilot program. Heck, it says here that "A Pilot program is basically a System program with extra features, and so is used whenever the drone’s System rating would be." So it's pretty clear that System does equal Pilot.

Carl
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jan 18 2010, 03:02 AM
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QUOTE (Freejack @ Jan 17 2010, 07:58 PM) *
Not according to sr4a.245. The Drone Pilot program is similar to an Agent's Pilot program. Heck, it says here that "A Pilot program is basically a System program with extra features, and so is used whenever the drone’s System rating would be." So it's pretty clear that System does equal Pilot.

Carl


Thanks for the Citation... I stand corrected...
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Freejack
post Jan 18 2010, 03:08 AM
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That's ok. I'm trying to gather the information from all over the place so I can resolve how the samples can get that hardware.

I have a similar issue with the Hacker's commlink. Why would he embed a Sony Emperor with a Response 2/Signal 3 (in his head at that)? With that, the final stats cannot be 5/5/5/5 since System can't exceed the Response rating and you can't improve any of the base stats by more than 2 points. So the best that commlink could reach would be a 4/5 which would leave his max System at 4.

Thanks for answers though. It does help me focus on the right areas it seems (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Carl
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jan 18 2010, 03:10 AM
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QUOTE (Freejack @ Jan 17 2010, 08:08 PM) *
That's ok. I'm trying to gather the information from all over the place so I can resolve how the samples can get that hardware.

I have a similar issue with the Hacker's commlink. Why would he embed a Sony Emperor with a Response 2/Signal 3 (in his head at that)? With that, the final stats cannot be 5/5/5/5 since System can't exceed the Response rating and you can't improve any of the base stats by more than 2 points. So the best that commlink could reach would be a 4/5 which would leave his max System at 4.

Thanks for answers though. It does help me focus on the right areas it seems (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Carl


No Problems...

Don't forget though that the comlink with ratings of 4 is Security Level... which is more than adequate for 99% of humanity

Keep the Faith...
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Freejack
post Jan 18 2010, 03:23 AM
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QUOTE (Tymeaus Jalynsfein @ Jan 17 2010, 08:10 PM) *
No Problems...

Don't forget though that the comlink with ratings of 4 is Security Level... which is more than adequate for 99% of humanity

Keep the Faith...


I agree with that assessment, but the Hacker Example Character has a 5/5/5/5 listed which isn't possible with the listed hardware.

See I'm trying to reconcile the listed hardware to help the groups I've been running. Since we use the Sample Characters to help people get involved without going through the hassle (at least initially) of creating a character, it'd be nice if, even if they're not balanced, they're at least accurate _and_ I can point to where the information is.

Right now I'm creating a single page in my gaming wiki with the vehicle information. Stats and what they mean, a conversion from the meters per combat round to kph/mph, what are the steps for jumping in, etc. Part of my learning process is to take the given stats and see how they were derived. Commlinks are easy since the two stats for hardware and two for software are listed (even though the OS isn't always listed on the Sample sheets). When a vehicle/drone lists the same stats (pilot for system) and I can't easily locate where they came from, well then I post it here for answers (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Carl
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Jaid
post Jan 18 2010, 06:06 AM
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the 5/5/5/5 may have been done before they instituted the maximum of 2 point upgrades.

in any case, don't take the sample characters as being 100% accurate. shadowrun has a long and (not-very)glorious history of getting the sample characters wrong.
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The Jopp
post Jan 18 2010, 11:07 AM
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You might want to go through the Drone descriptions in the game and give them "correct" rating as well.

I play it so that anything that have:
A: Carries Security/Military drones is "Security"
B: Have "Security" or "Military" in their description
C: Have a weapon mount

...All have either Response 4 (Security) or Response 5 "Military".

This helps a lot and make things easier when building your drones.
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Night Jackal
post Jan 18 2010, 02:10 PM
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Just something I noticed being said that is not completely accurate....

QUOTE
System can't exceed the Response rating


The System rating of the program can't exceed the response but you can put a system 6 program in a response 1 commlink....though the system will run at a 1
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Freejack
post Jan 18 2010, 07:38 PM
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Yep you're right that it wasn't said. It does run at a slower speed.

Carl
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Malachi
post Jan 18 2010, 07:53 PM
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QUOTE (Freejack @ Jan 17 2010, 09:23 PM) *
I agree with that assessment, but the Hacker Example Character has a 5/5/5/5 listed which isn't possible with the listed hardware.

Why isn't it possible?

My copy of SR4A has the sample Hacker with an Erika Elite who's base stats are Response 3 and Signal 4. Both of those can be upgrade to 5, within the prescribed limit of +2. Note that System and Firewall (being software-based, not hardware-based) are not subject to this limit.

I was one of the proofreaders on SR4A, we went over those sample characters pretty hardcore. I would be surprised if there are any obvious errors still.
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Karoline
post Jan 18 2010, 09:43 PM
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I'd imagine the 'pilot is equal to system' is a typo that meant to say equal to agent?

Could be totally wrong about that though, but everything I've seen equates pilot to agent, not system.
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hahnsoo
post Jan 18 2010, 09:55 PM
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SR4A p 245:
QUOTE
Drones, vehicles, and some other (semi-)autonomous devices have a special System program called a Pilot program. Similar to an agent’s Pilot program, Pilot programs are a special type of OS featuring semi-autonomous decision-making algorithms and special programming specific to the device on which it is installed. Pilot is for devices that must be able to assess situations, make decisions, adapt, and possibly even function independently of a user, sometimes for extended periods. The higher the Pilot rating, the “smarter” it is.
A Pilot program is basically a System program with extra features, and so is used whenever the drone’s System rating would be. It also stands for a drone’s “Mental attributes” when called for (usually Intuition and Logic, and sometimes Willpower).
Pilots are not bright, and are often called “dog-brains,” a term that reflects their intelligence level. When faced with an unexpected or novel situation, a drone makes a Pilot + Response Test with a threshold set by the gamemaster to see if its “common sense” prevails.


A Drone pilot is used for the Drone's System rating.

Also, for other Matrix attributes, you use the Device Rating. SR4A, p 222:
QUOTE
DEVICE RATING
There are far too many electronics in the world of Shadowrun for a gamemaster to keep track of their individual Matrix attributes. Instead, each device is simply given a Device rating. Unless it has been customized or changed in some way, assume that each of the Matrix attributes listed above for a particular device equals its Device rating.
If a particular device plays an important role in an adventure, the gamemaster should assign a full complement of Matrix attributes to it. If the item only plays a passing role, then a simple Device rating will suffice. The Sample Devices table (at left) lists typical Device ratings.


Pretty much the same as Tymeaus Jalynsfein said. And ALL of these values can be adjusted and customized, as needed, as long as you pay the cash to do so.
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Freejack
post Jan 19 2010, 01:13 AM
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QUOTE (Malachi @ Jan 18 2010, 12:53 PM) *
Why isn't it possible?

My copy of SR4A has the sample Hacker with an Erika Elite who's base stats are Response 3 and Signal 4. Both of those can be upgrade to 5, within the prescribed limit of +2. Note that System and Firewall (being software-based, not hardware-based) are not subject to this limit.


That's interesting. My copy says:

QUOTE
AUGMENTATIONS
Implanted Commlink (Sony Emperor w/ Sim Module modified
for BTL/Hot Sim, w/Response 5, Signal 5, System 5, Firewall 5);
Control Rig; Cybereyes [Rating 2, w/Low-Light Vision, Smart-
link, Thermographic Vision, and Protective Covers]; Datajack;
Data Lock (Encryption 5); Enhanced Articulation; Skin Pocket;
Sleep Regulator Biofeedback Filter 4, Black Hammer 4, Browse 5, Command 5,
Data Bomb 2, Decrypt 3, Edit 5, Exploit 5, Scan 5, Spoof 4,
Stealth 5, Track 4]; 15 different VR Games

WEAPONS
Fixer (Connection 3/Loyalty 2)
Spider (Connection 2/Loyalty 1)

NOTES
Starting Nuyen: 3D6 x 50¥
Lost Natural Low-Light Vision due to implants


That's a copy/paste from my PDF copy.

QUOTE
I was one of the proofreaders on SR4A, we went over those sample characters pretty hardcore. I would be surprised if there are any obvious errors still.


Me too and I found my small share of errors in the PDFs I reviewed as well. I didn't go over the mechanics of the sheets though. Could the PDF have been updated? I just checked and my PDF date is March 11th, 2009. While I have selected "notify me of updates" on Battlecorps when I get PDFs, I see from a quick look that the 20th Anniversary one is not in the list. Sounds like I may have missed an update to the PDF.

Carl
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