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> Obscure character creation concept, GM needs your opinion...
augmentin
post Jun 3 2010, 06:43 PM
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Two players want their PCs to share the same body. Here's the concept: PC A wants to be a piloting origin AI. PC B wants to be a possession base Free Spirit. They want to split the cost of a Type-O clone, cyber it up (naturally including stirrup interface and implanted commlink), and then PC A makes the implanted commlink his home node while PC B possesses the clone body. (Also, they really want to acquire an Otomo in game.)

Here's the question (besides the obvious would you allow it? why/why not?):

The players contend this biodrone-vessel entity should receive 5+ initiative passes: 3 for the AI + 2 for the Free Spirit (+ sustained increase reflexes spell on the spirit-side of the entity).

Thoughts?

(Side note: the original plan was to convince a third player to be a blind face with an uber-pet: they would have gone with the same bio-drone vessel concept, but in the form of a dog.)
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Tanegar
post Jun 3 2010, 06:58 PM
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There is absolutely no way I would allow 5 physical initiative passes. I'm not 100% on this, but I think spirits only receive extra IPs when in astral form, and AIs only in the Matrix. Plus, how are two minds going to control one body at the same time? Make them trade off.
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DireRadiant
post Jun 3 2010, 07:03 PM
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Sounds like a lot of fun. I'd certainly allow this kind of experiment in my home game.

As for the 5 IP question. I wouldn't sweat it, you aren't really breaking the 4(5) IP limit since PC A is getting 3 IP and PC B is getting 2 IP, it just appears to an outside observer as if the Bio Drone has 5 IP. Without PC A or PC B it would get whatever a normal Bio Drone would get. Two players are making themselves a single, albeit hard, target which will penalize them equally. Whatever happens to the bio drone is something they both have to deal with.
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Deadmannumberone
post Jun 3 2010, 07:04 PM
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Two characters can't pool their IPs, otherwise I'd just convince my group to make a half dozen riggers, and have them all jump into one drone to stack all their IPs into one massively fast drone.
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Draco18s
post Jun 3 2010, 07:08 PM
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The AI has 3 initiative passes on the matrix while the spirit has 2 on the physical. The "drone" would have "5" passes if three of them were matrix-only. Otherwise the two characters would get in each others' way.

It's no different than a hacker (3 passes) owning an agent (2 passes) and shooting a gun while the agent hacks about.
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Caadium
post Jun 3 2010, 07:22 PM
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As Tanegar said, I don't see spirit IP bonuses adding to matrix actions, nor do I see AI bonuses adding to physical actions. I don't have books in front of me, and I don't remember how possession spirits IP bonuses work with augmented bodies.

Also, having the one body there would need to be a hierarchy of who was in control of what/when. However, from what you posted I suspect that the two characters would "coincidentally" always agree on a course of actions and things would generally be mutally beneficial. I don't know about you, but I just don't see the overall needs/desires/plans of an AI AND a Free Spirit meshing up so perfectly.

I see two players that aren't satisfied with munchkining up 1 character, but want to wonder-twin their munchkin ideas. Every game is different so I won't tell you how to run your game; however since you asked, if it were my game I'd not only say no, I'd probably make them buy me another beer to replace the one I ruined as I laughed and spit it all over the place.
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Nifft
post Jun 3 2010, 07:52 PM
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Like everyone else here, it seems perfectly sane to allow each player their full allotment of IPs, so long as they're sticking within the limits of their plane of existence.

The Spirit could use its IPs in the Astral, or (fewer) in meatspace. The AI could use its IPs on the matrix, or (fewer) in meatspace.

But if they're both operating in meatspace, they're NOT operating the same body. They can take turns -- the Spirit can go inhabit something else while the AI runs the rigged clone body -- but only one will moves the man at a time.

This is not necessarily a problem: they can buy some cheap Drones for the AI to jump into, and craft some inhabitation vessels and/or pets for the Spirit to putter around in, in case they ever want to split up.

Otherwise, sounds like the set-up for an adorable sitcom about an unusual couple forced into unusual cohabitation.

"Clone Sweet Clone", -- N
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tagz
post Jun 3 2010, 08:02 PM
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I like the idea, but I don't think it would be as successful as they players might think.

As the others have said, the 5 IPs would be split for both characters, and that would really only work with 3 matrix actions from the AI and 2 physical from the spirit.

If I recall my magic + tech right, the spirit would be in control of the physical form completely, it would have priorety in any physical action, and the AI could only make the body move if it rigged it and the spirit ALLOWED it to act. Also, since technically all actions in an IP happen at the same time, any IP that the spirit does anything physical the AI would NOT. It could try but it would be in vain.

At best I could see it working like this:
IP1: Spirit acts physical, AI can use matrix
IP2: Spirit acts physical, AI can use matrix
IP3: Spirit out of IPs and does not act, if GM allows the AI could rig the body for 1 physical action, though the GM might say that so long as the spirit cannot act it cannot willingly submit to allowing it's vessel to be controlled by AI
IP4: neither has a forth IP, no action

This doesn't sound any better then two separate characters to me, other then the advantage to the AI of having a mobile and well defended home node, and the spirit can have the AI rig and protect the body when it's on the astral. Communication between the two could be difficult too as tech and magic don't mesh well, the other could have no idea what the other wants or is doing.

Cool concept though. I hope they do it.
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sabs
post Jun 3 2010, 08:29 PM
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Well a rigger that is 'jumped into' a drone uses his matrix Initiative for physical actions.

Which is why you could end up with a drone suddently going at 4 ip passes when the rigger jumps into it.
If said drone is a bioclone/drone. Would not the same thing be true?
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Fezig
post Jun 3 2010, 09:04 PM
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QUOTE (Deadmannumberone @ Jun 3 2010, 11:04 AM) *
Two characters can't pool their IPs, otherwise I'd just convince my group to make a half dozen riggers, and have them all jump into one drone to stack all their IPs into one massively fast drone.


Go Go Power Rangers? Or more "Our Powers Combined.."?
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Mesh
post Jun 3 2010, 09:15 PM
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QUOTE (Caadium @ Jun 3 2010, 03:22 PM) *
As Tanegar said, I don't see spirit IP bonuses adding to matrix actions, nor do I see AI bonuses adding to physical actions. I don't have books in front of me, and I don't remember how possession spirits IP bonuses work with augmented bodies.

Also, having the one body there would need to be a hierarchy of who was in control of what/when. However, from what you posted I suspect that the two characters would "coincidentally" always agree on a course of actions and things would generally be mutally beneficial. I don't know about you, but I just don't see the overall needs/desires/plans of an AI AND a Free Spirit meshing up so perfectly.

I see two players that aren't satisfied with munchkining up 1 character, but want to wonder-twin their munchkin ideas. Every game is different so I won't tell you how to run your game; however since you asked, if it were my game I'd not only say no, I'd probably make them buy me another beer to replace the one I ruined as I laughed and spit it all over the place.


Mesh LOL

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tagz
post Jun 3 2010, 09:20 PM
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QUOTE (sabs @ Jun 3 2010, 09:29 PM) *
Well a rigger that is 'jumped into' a drone uses his matrix Initiative for physical actions.

Which is why you could end up with a drone suddently going at 4 ip passes when the rigger jumps into it.
If said drone is a bioclone/drone. Would not the same thing be true?

I would say the biggest reason would be that the when a spirit normally possess something being rigged the rigger loses control of most actions and only retains those that the spirit can't do because of a lack of DNI or whatnot. If the spirit isn't giving up it's control then the rigger shouldn't be able to do much in the meat. I while I don't have my rule books open at the moment, I should think relinquishing control of your "own body" would take at least SOME sort of action on the spirit's part, and thus, make the spirit lose an IP or at least part of one.

Just my 2 (IMG:style_emoticons/default/nuyen.gif)
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Makki
post Jun 3 2010, 09:23 PM
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how did these two meet and come up with the idea in the first place? Oo
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Yerameyahu
post Jun 3 2010, 09:37 PM
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In a tavern, of course.
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tagz
post Jun 3 2010, 09:39 PM
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Now THAT'S something that should be required in their background, mostly just to see what they can come up with. These two entities exist in worlds that don't really intersect except on the physical plane. Heck, many AI's don't know there IS a physical world let alone an astral one, and that goes the same for spirits towards the matrix.

It's sort of like a fish and a bird trying to chat. The one fish has to stick his head out of the water and the bird needs to fly in place above it... but how did they know the other was there to talk too in the first place?

I'd love to hear the results of what they come up with.
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Summerstorm
post Jun 3 2010, 09:59 PM
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I would allow that... but as many said: There are SOME problems.

1. They share a body and on the physical plane it should work like this: The spirit has the the "Main Control", but the AI can interrupt, hinder actions, movements... so basically can make it spaz out. Also the Spirit can "relax" and let the AI take over. The Spirit can get MAXIMUM 2 passes, the AI 3 (or maybe 4 with a nice GM and some houseruling), but of course this does not combine in the physical world... BUT i would allow the spirit to blast on the astral when the AI steers the body, or the AI to hack stuff when the spirit steers. (Maybe with a slight modifier for precision for Actions while in moving vehicle for the spirit on astral *g*)

2. They cannot talk on an "intuitive" level. The AI is not alive and as such cannot have a mindlink or communication magic... the AI has no DNI and cannot think words. So they have to talk to each other on the physical. (speakers, microphone, HUD) something like that.

But overall i find this idea funny and pretty fitting for this weird world. Maybe i will have an NPC in my game have a concept like that.
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Caadium
post Jun 3 2010, 10:08 PM
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QUOTE (tagz @ Jun 3 2010, 02:39 PM) *
It's sort of like a fish and a bird trying to chat. The one fish has to stick his head out of the water and the bird needs to fly in place above it... but how did they know the other was there to talk too in the first place?


That analogy makes it far too easy for them. Afterall, there is alway waterfowl (such as ducks). I'm thinking its more like a fish talking to a grapefruit. One is an animal, another is a plant; two totally seperate worlds that don't interract. Yet, somehow they come together to form the newest Odd Couple. I'm fairly certain that Felix and Oscar would seem like identical twins when compared to this combo.
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Udoshi
post Jun 3 2010, 11:51 PM
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QUOTE (augmentin @ Jun 3 2010, 11:43 AM) *
The players contend this biodrone-vessel entity should receive 5+ initiative passes: 3 for the AI + 2 for the Free Spirit (+ sustained increase reflexes spell on the spirit-side of the entity).


You do not -add-. You use the best thereof. Therein lies your problem. READ the rules for your extra passes! Most all of them say 'does not stack with other technological or magical enhancements to initiative' or something similiar.

Free spirit: 3 astral. 2 in the meatspace. AI: 3 on the internet. Stirrup: As jumped-rigger.
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augmentin
post Jun 4 2010, 02:42 AM
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QUOTE (Caadium @ Jun 3 2010, 02:22 PM) *
If it were my game I'd not only say no, I'd probably make them buy me another beer to replace the one I ruined as I laughed and spit it all over the place.


Classic.

So thanks for all the advice, everyone! To recap:
  • The consensus seems to be 5 IPs are okay, but must be on separate "planes." I.E. Spirit uses powers and/or spells while AI "drives" or Spirit
    "drives" the body while AI operates on matrix or maybe rigs just an external mount or the like. In other words, it's really not 5 IPs, but maybe a good analogy is two runners ridding in the same vehicle. Only one can drive, but both still have actions.
  • Spirit-AI coordination would be difficult at best. Image link is out. What about something like nanotattoos? Could the spirit control that to send messages to the AI?


How am I doing?

RE: how'd they come up with it. The concept started when a possession tradition mage directed a spirit to possess a pursuing drone and used it to turn on the pursing KE team and allow our heroes to escape. The successful tactic spawned a lot of high fives and led to this.

RE: character background. Great point. Much fleshing out still to be done, but the basic thought is they're both "children" of a recently killed SR team. The AI was an agent for a hacker. The spirit was an ally. Their "creators" were killed by enemy X and they've combined forces to try and relate to a world they don't really understand and because everything else they know was recently killed.
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tagz
post Jun 4 2010, 03:01 AM
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Not a bad background actually. A few details and it could work pretty well.

The communication is going to be the difficult thing. I suggest something outlandishly simple, but not necessarily concealed or private.

Just have them talk to themselves. The AI can talk via a small speaker on the drone, the spirit can speak normally I believe. Both should be able to hear so that would work fine.

The drawback is they can't talk without the possibility of someone overhearing it, but that seems like a cool and unusual character flaw, and could get them into fun stations ESPECIALLY since they don't understand the physical world too well.

Like...
They meet a fixer named "Smalls" and the fixer happens to be grossly overweight.
The AI might start talking to the spirit: "It is a strange abnormality to name oneself in direct contradiction to obvious realistic qualities. It should have named itself 'Bigs', 'Larges', 'Fats', or another synonym, however this appears to be a common oversight among metahumans.", right in front of the fixer, not understanding it's insulting him.

I'd highly recommend this communication setup and a negative quality like Uncouth, Incompetent Etiquette, Reality Impaired, or Real World Nativity just for the crazy situations it could cause.
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Lansdren
post Jun 4 2010, 07:37 AM
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on the communication subject some modification on the drone would enable them to change the frequency of their respective speeches out of normal hearing so as to talk in more privacy would only take two small mods to the voice and hearing for the drone body and a specilised speaker/mic setup only slightly more special then the one you would need to rig up anyway

Johnson "you are one strange fella talking to yourself like that"
High pitched sounds come out of the guys wrist mounted commlink
Johnson "what was that?"
Drone "dont worry my commlink was just laughing at you"
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Krrayn
post Jun 4 2010, 12:23 PM
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All I can think about is that movie All Of Me with Steve Martin and Lily Tomlin.
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Blade
post Jun 4 2010, 01:11 PM
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He's a analytical mathematical AI, she's a witty magical spirit. They fight crime!
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Krrayn
post Jun 4 2010, 01:16 PM
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QUOTE (Blade @ Jun 4 2010, 01:11 PM) *
He's a analytical mathematical AI, she's a witty magical spirit. They fight crime!


Absolute win (IMG:style_emoticons/default/rotfl.gif)
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sabs
post Jun 4 2010, 01:39 PM
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Should that not be "They commit crime!"
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