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> Nosferatu Build Advice, Brand new to SR and in need of help
tundrawalker1
post Feb 5 2011, 06:32 PM
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Hello Dumpshockers. Brand new member here. I have been a lurker for a little bit reading on the rules and such and have found the search button to be my friend! I am brand new to Shadowrun. In fact, I have not even played it yet. Been a d20 gamer for years and before that played the Palladium Books system for even more years. A member of our gaming group is an old time Shadowrun player from years ago. He is the member Tyger Tyger on here. At any rate, he is running a Shadowrun campaign beginning Feb 12 and I have chosen to play a Nosferatu.

Again, let me reiterate, I am brand new to Shadowrun. I am a big fan of vampires in all settings and had intended to create a vampire for this game. Then I read the Nosferatu and now this is what I am playing. Like I mentioned, I have done some reading and I do realize that the Nosferatu is not the most optimized build out there by any means but it is what I wish to play, if for nothing else the flavor of the character.

So, if I could indulge in your abilities, what would you suggest in lines of Nosferatu builds. I am envisioning a high Charisma and a Magic score of 4. He is going to be a magician and will have spells like metamorphosis: bat, metamorphosis: wolf, metamorphosis: mist, for traditional flavor. But I am also going to have some spells like Invisibility, Resist Allergy (not the proper name I know), disguise, and will have some of the magic devices that sustain spells for him.

Again, apologies for the noobieness. And thanks in advance for any and all suggestions.
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Makki
post Feb 5 2011, 06:57 PM
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I'd suggest not play an Infected as the first SR char, but i won't.
what I suggest is a very good background story for why you are an almighty Nosferatu who happens to know nothing and have no skills and below average attributes.
IF you build with 400 BP, that's what you will end up with. If you happen to start a high power game, your Nosferatu might come out about average.

with the background done, for go forr good Counterspelling and Buffspells so your team mates will have a reason to run with you and not shoot you at first sight.
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tundrawalker1
post Feb 5 2011, 07:07 PM
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Yeah, I hear that they are not the greatest but that really doesn't matter. I am known as an optimizer or a min/maxer so this character is a delightful change for me. That said, I would like him to be as good or near as good as he can be.

The starting build points are 440. I should have mentioned that right off the bat.
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Sephiroth
post Feb 6 2011, 12:54 AM
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First off, I strongly recommend that you consider taking negative qualities pertaining to mental disorders if you are interested in being authentic to SR nosferatu-ness. Out of all the character options out there, a nosferatu is one of the most appropriate builds for such qualities (like paranoia, bi-polar disorder, schizophrenia, and so on. You're already going to have a schizoid personality disorder almost by default).

Here is a link to a nosferatu character I am playing in a play-by-post game here on Dumpshock. Notice that his skills are all at pretty low ratings and his physical attributes are pathetic. This is the kind of thing that you cannot get around when building a nos PC; you just don't get that many BPs to work with after the racial cost. One way you could approach your character is to build him around an astral role. Nosferatu PCs have the highest mental attribute caps that I know of off the top of my head, and since those are the attributes that matter in the astral plane, you could easily be an effective astral-based character. You would also want to have good conjuring skills and perhaps several bound spirits as well.

For a more general build, you may want to consider a Charisma-based tradition for your nosferatu, such as black magic. With a good Willpower, that'd give you a pretty decent drain pool and simultaneously give you good dice pools for your Influence and Compulsion powers. On the other hand, SR lore has in the past always portrayed nosferatu as hermetic magicians. If you want to go the hermetic magician route, than you'd want to boost your Logic for the drain pool and get the First Aid skill, for a healthy amount of dice to heal whatever magical drain you take from summoning and spellcasting. The Regeneration power will NOT help you heal drain.

I'd also advise getting the Restricted Gear quality and getting a rating 4 power focus, in addition to whatever sustaining foci you want to get.

EDIT: Oh, and you can't shapechange into mist. That's why vampires and banshees have a critter power for it - spellcasting cannot turn you into mist. Turning into a bat is also kind of iffy, given the way the Shapechange spell works, but a wolf is completely fair game.
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Summerstorm
post Feb 6 2011, 01:17 AM
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QUOTE (Sephiroth @ Feb 6 2011, 01:54 AM) *
EDIT: Oh, and you can't shapechange into mist. That's why vampires and banshees have a critter power for it - spellcasting cannot turn you into mist. Turning into a bat is also kind of iffy, given the way the Shapechange spell works, but a wolf is completely fair game.


Ummm... why not? You can change people into Goo, or freeze them, or change them into a mouse. Surely you can turn them into mist... problem is just: everything happening to the mist happens to them *g*... also they can not move, or look around (astral sight should work though).

So yeah, overall a shape into mist- spell would be terrible, but possible.

Turning into a bat shouldn't be a problem either. Can't see any reason why not.

Back to the character:

Be aware that being a "Monster" is much harder than being just a criminal. You NEED to take lifeforce. People fear you. You don't look human, and even if diguised: Magicuser can see the real you (even after you get masking).

I prefer Vampires or even Banshees myself. Nosferatu's just are a tad more alien... not just by looking not that human anymore.

There is much difficulty in this. In finding a team accepting and using you. Coping with your limited starting ressources (but 440 is a HUGE improvement for you over the normal 400) and making a believable, realistic character. - the good old: i only have insane high mental stats and can only cast and summon - is just weird and BAD.

I also support the "Mental Disorders" Sephiroth mentioned. You are WEIRD, not longer human. Don't play him as just a "Dude with cool awesome powers ™".

Well, good luck with that.
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Sephiroth
post Feb 6 2011, 01:54 AM
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QUOTE (Summerstorm @ Feb 5 2011, 09:17 PM) *
Ummm... why not? You can change people into Goo, or freeze them, or change them into a mouse. Surely you can turn them into mist... problem is just: everything happening to the mist happens to them *g*... also they can not move, or look around (astral sight should work though).

So yeah, overall a shape into mist- spell would be terrible, but possible.

Turning into a bat shouldn't be a problem either. Can't see any reason why not.

On the mist thing - Shapechange specifically states that it lets you turn into a mundane critter. A cloud of mist is not a critter. Also, if it worked the way Turn to Goo works, then they would be unconscious while they were mist. Your suggestion works, it's just not the kind of mist form that the OP is looking for. That kind of thing is what the Mist Form power is for.

And I say that a bat is iffy because of the clause in Shapechange that states that the animal you're changing into has to have a Body rating within 2 points of yours. Bats have a Body of 1, so if he opts for a body rating any higher than 3, a bat form would be out of his reach through Shapechange.
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Mardrax
post Feb 6 2011, 02:24 AM
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QUOTE (Sephiroth @ Feb 6 2011, 01:54 AM) *
Here is a link to a nosferatu character I am playing

Link is broken?
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Summerstorm
post Feb 6 2011, 02:35 AM
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QUOTE (Sephiroth @ Feb 6 2011, 02:54 AM) *
On the mist thing - Shapechange specifically states that it lets you turn into a mundane critter. A cloud of mist is not a critter. Also, if it worked the way Turn to Goo works, then they would be unconscious while they were mist. Your suggestion works, it's just not the kind of mist form that the OP is looking for. That kind of thing is what the Mist Form power is for.

And I say that a bat is iffy because of the clause in Shapechange that states that the animal you're changing into has to have a Body rating within 2 points of yours. Bats have a Body of 1, so if he opts for a body rating any higher than 3, a bat form would be out of his reach through Shapechange.


Ah yes. but as i said a few times: Shapechange spell is a mess and should be burned from all books anyway. Basing it on Body is totally weird, and the limitations of the spell are artificial and not really in line with magic "feels" and other spells are working.

Just design other spells replacing it, basing the changing on mass and difficulty of the form and granting no "usual powers" associated with the form, other than bodily. Other spells can provide those (visual modes or senses, poison etc.).

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Sephiroth
post Feb 6 2011, 03:07 AM
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QUOTE (Mardrax @ Feb 5 2011, 10:24 PM) *
Link is broken?

Fixed.
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Sephiroth
post Feb 6 2011, 03:10 AM
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QUOTE (Summerstorm @ Feb 5 2011, 10:35 PM) *
Ah yes. but as i said a few times: Shapechange spell is a mess and should be burned from all books anyway. Basing it on Body is totally weird, and the limitations of the spell are artificial and not really in line with magic "feels" and other spells are working.

Just design other spells replacing it, basing the changing on mass and difficulty of the form and granting no "usual powers" associated with the form, other than bodily. Other spells can provide those (visual modes or senses, poison etc.).

Ok, but how would that be or not be able to duplicate Mist Form? The power gives you a movement rate of 5m/turn and Immunity to Normal Weapons, and presumably lets you see and hear normally as mist as well.
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Mardrax
post Feb 6 2011, 03:22 AM
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QUOTE (Summerstorm @ Feb 6 2011, 03:35 AM) *
Just design other spells replacing it, basing the changing on mass and difficulty of the form and granting no "usual powers" associated with the form, other than bodily. Other spells can provide those (visual modes or senses, poison etc.).

RAW doesn't know mass, beyond Strength allowing you to life weight. Weight is never ever defined, though. Body for a critter is the closest approximation, but it's an abstract one. A Body 1 human presumably weighs more than a Body 1 domestic cat.
Not taking mass into account for shapeshifting is quite canon though. Almost all natural shapeshifters lose weight on turning (meta)human, most pointed example being great dragons. Fox, and Eagle shifters would be the exception, together with some Wolf shifters.
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Game2BHappy
post Feb 6 2011, 03:33 AM
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QUOTE (tundrawalker1 @ Feb 5 2011, 02:07 PM) *
I am known as an optimizer or a min/maxer so this character is a delightful change for me.

IMO, Nosferatu is definitely a min/max build (i.e. dumping huge amount of points for normally unobtainable powers at the sacrifice of spending those points on rounding out a character).

If you are looking to avoid a min/max situation, but still want a unique character, there are many other options in that book to consider.
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