IPB

Welcome Guest ( Log In | Register )

3 Pages V   1 2 3 >  
Reply to this topicStart new topic
> Chargen options and house rules for a real Street Level game, Not just low BP
Brainpiercing7.6...
post Mar 1 2012, 04:10 PM
Post #1


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 873
Joined: 16-September 10
Member No.: 19,052



I'm in the process of making a chargen ruleset as well as house rules for a real street level / beginner runners game:

The design goals are as follows:
- Low starting cash OR high debt
- Low lifestyles
- Not to break magic/mundane balance even more
- above average attributes in spite of low level
- fair amount of skills
- not excessively min-maxed characters
- tie in with the streets life


The runners that originate from this basically have to be a cut above the rest, because else they won't make it. However, they should be just a BIT better than your average thug, bouncer, or ganger.

The generation system must definitely be Karmagen.

I'm going to suggest the following to meet those goals:

300 karma limit
10k nY limit bought via karma
Bonus knowledge skill karma (12x Log+Int)
Bonus contact karma (4xCha); Contact max loyalty 3, max connection 4. Contacts generally use Connection x2 for rolls on behalf of the runners.
Attributes cost 3x
Races cost 1xBP cost, maximum 40.
Skill groups can specialize 1x per skill

150karma for attributes max (unmodified by race), no attribute lower than 2.
No maximums except racial/augmented at chargen; no skill maximum.
Max magic of 3 from normal karma. Max of 2 spells known bought from normal karma.
Everyone should have basic social skills and perception.
Max Edge 4. Edge refreshes before every run, and for every critical succes (4 over threshold) 1 point is regained, even when edge was expended to make the test.

Every PC must have some sort of valuable ties to family or friends, essentially gaining either the Dependants quality (for the usual karma) or getting a free contact of parents, siblings, or best friends of NO MECHANICAL value. Essentially these are Loyalty 5, Connection 1 contacts, who may not be called upon for help. Rather, expect them to call for your help.

More money can be gained by borrowing: You can take the In debt quality without gaining karma points, for basically lots of nuyen. The interest rate is 120% per year, so 10% per month. Interest is added to lifestyle cost each month. You may repay portions of credit each months, limited to 10% of the total amount per month. You do NOT need to pay karma. The following month interest is then recalculated. If you hit a dry spell the loan shark will come for you and bust your balls. They generally want to keep you earning, though, so it is possible he will settle for a free job in exchange for waiving one month's interest, or a part of it. It should be appropriately difficult to simply get rid of the loan shark, but unlike the In-Debt quality, this IS a possibility. Noone will ever lend you money, again, though. Also, likely as not, unless you wipe out the entire outfit, someone will take up the loan shark's position and come for the debt again. And then they won't be pulling punches. AND they will target your contacts, especially family, friends, dependants.

Awakened may buy more magic score and spells by buying more karma with the debt money.

You may buy decrepid gear at half price. Per piece of such gear involved in any roll the glitch limit is lowered by 1. Generally a basic glitch on equipment like this will mean it breaks down, either reducing its rating by 1, give you a DP penalty of 1 point for future tests with that equipment, or simply not function (for simple or all-or-nothing items), until repaired.

ANY method of gaining wealth is game, as long as it's reasonably fun. Boosting cars for weeks isn't. Career criminals can take criminal day jobs, which don't pay better.

Also, since this is the harsh world of the streets, any kind of displayed affluence WILL generate envy. Buying one hugely expensive piece of gear with all your debt might put you at a big advantage, but people will try to take it from you - often.

***

How does this all sound? Any good suggestions to add stuff?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Mar 1 2012, 06:00 PM
Post #2


Prime Runner Ascendant
**********

Group: Members
Posts: 17,568
Joined: 26-March 09
From: Aurora, Colorado
Member No.: 17,022



Well... I will say it...

At 150 Karma for Attributes, I do not think you are going to get even average stats. Human with 3's in everything (8 Stats) costs 25 per stat, which makes 200 Karma, not 150. So you are going to get BELOW average Stats for all characters, for almost all stats. Not enough points. 300 points in Karma Gen is just not enough points.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
NiL_FisK_Urd
post Mar 1 2012, 06:06 PM
Post #3


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 881
Joined: 13-November 11
From: Vienna, Austria
Member No.: 43,494



well, he stated Karma*3 for Stats - but 300 Karma is really low.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
thorya
post Mar 1 2012, 06:13 PM
Post #4


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 664
Joined: 26-September 11
Member No.: 39,030



If you are expecting a lot of rolls in the low dice pool region I would suggest changing the glitch system. (this might not be an issue, I hear street level and think low dice pools) I'm running a low street level game right now and changed the glitch system to be a glitch when you roll more 1's than successes. It eliminates that irritating bouncing around of your chance for a glitch as you increase dice pools. It also keeps glitches around as a possibility much longer (which I think fits with the crappy equipment, living on the edge, feel of a street level game) and makes qualities like gremlins and cursed more playable (and less meaningless at high dice pools). My players also found it more intuitive. Of course, this means that overall the chance of glitches increases in your game. Some players will be upset that glitches will occur on about 1/6 rolls in the 1-7 range rather than 1/9 like the normal system. There is still the slight increase in glitch chance as you go from 1-2, but nothings perfect.

Normal Chance of glitch-
DP 1- 16.7%
DP 2- 30.6%
DP 3- 7.4%
DP 4- 13.2%
DP 5- 3.5%
DP 6- 6.2%
DP 7- 0.6%

Alternate Chance of glitch-
DP 1- 16.7%
DP 2- 19.4%
DP 3- 19.9%
DP 4- 19.7%
DP 5- 19.2%
DP 6- 18.6%
DP 7- 9.6%
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Tanegar
post Mar 1 2012, 06:33 PM
Post #5


Runner
******

Group: Members
Posts: 2,649
Joined: 29-October 06
Member No.: 9,731



300 karma isn't just low, it's crippling. The standard allowance is 750; remember that Build Points translate to karma on a roughly 1:2 basis, not 1:1.

Starting cash is hardly ever a significant amount anyway, unless the character buys a Luxury lifestyle.

I think there's a much simpler way to meet your goals: standard 750-point karmagen; all lifestyles above Low disallowed. Ten thousand nuyen goes FAST, especially for gear-intensive archetypes like street samurai and hackers. Magicians can get away with less gear, but 10k is low even for them.

My philosophy regarding house rules is that less is more.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Makki
post Mar 1 2012, 06:50 PM
Post #6


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,373
Joined: 14-January 10
From: Stuttgart, Germany
Member No.: 18,036



easiest way to make street level characters is to tell the players "go make street level characters".
a few restrictions on availability (~8 ), max magic (~3) and max cash (~30k) are ok. But I wouldn't drop total BP/karma too much. 370 BP and 650 karma are very very reasonable. If a players doesn't build a street level character, he has to try again.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
thorya
post Mar 1 2012, 06:59 PM
Post #7


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 664
Joined: 26-September 11
Member No.: 39,030



I think that 300 karma could work, as long as you're willing to accept that most people are going to have at most 8-9 in their specialties and that it's going to be a very different game. Though, you probably won't see a lot of above average attributes.

with 3x for attributes, it's enough to have (if you start human)-
2 attributes at 4, 3 in every other attribute including edge
3 skills at 4, 6 skills at 3
10 k-nuyen
net 0 qualities

3 and below in attributes, and for the first 2 ranks in skills: karma >= BP.

Most players tend to balance qualities costs anyway (from what I've seen), so the change in value doesn't really matter much. If the point is to start with a lot of pretty mundane, non-cybered characters it works okay.

It's 15 karma to get 3 in an attribute (in this system) and 42 karma to get 5, so the first 300 karma is worth more about as much as the last 450 karma in terms of adding to your dice pools. Really the top level skills and attributes are where you get hurt, but I don't think that's what he wants in the game anyway.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Mar 1 2012, 07:22 PM
Post #8


Prime Runner Ascendant
**********

Group: Members
Posts: 17,568
Joined: 26-March 09
From: Aurora, Colorado
Member No.: 17,022



QUOTE (thorya @ Mar 1 2012, 11:59 AM) *
I think that 300 karma could work, as long as you're willing to accept that most people are going to have at most 8-9 in their specialties and that it's going to be a very different game. Though, you probably won't see a lot of above average attributes.

with 3x for attributes, it's enough to have (if you start human)-
2 attributes at 4, 3 in every other attribute including edge
3 skills at 4, 6 skills at 3
10 k-nuyen
net 0 qualities

3 and below in attributes, and for the first 2 ranks in skills: karma >= BP.

Most players tend to balance qualities costs anyway (from what I've seen), so the change in value doesn't really matter much. If the point is to start with a lot of pretty mundane, non-cybered characters it works okay.

It's 15 karma to get 3 in an attribute (in this system) and 42 karma to get 5, so the first 300 karma is worth more about as much as the last 450 karma in terms of adding to your dice pools. Really the top level skills and attributes are where you get hurt, but I don't think that's what he wants in the game anyway.


Except that it is not x3 for Stats in SR4A, it is x5. Which is crippling (Literally) with only 300 Karma to spend.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Warlordtheft
post Mar 1 2012, 07:26 PM
Post #9


Neophyte Runner
*****

Group: Members
Posts: 2,325
Joined: 2-April 07
From: The Center of the Universe
Member No.: 11,360



I use BP, but for the campaign I'm running right now I started everyone at 350 BP, Availability 8 ristrictions, and some edges and flaw restrictions because of the nature of the campaign.

Resulting characters were basically two physads, 1 full mage and a technomancer. Later a mage joined the group as well as a smuggler--but since the game is running like 6 sessions in I jutst let the new characters be base 400 BP. BTW the game is intended to be a magic heavy game in a toxic zone (LA's slightly submerged sections).

I did not impose an aditional limits on attributes since 200 would be most of their points, primary skills were 3's with a few 4's, and I limited tech to 50,000 nuyen. Not suprisingly, no one made a Street Sam or rigger (the technomancer is doing a good job of it right now though).

They started off with the community they are part of as a group contact, this contact is also a dependent quality (there are kids), and home ground. As to the magic alchera fountain in the middle and the the viel/men of the woods protecting it I did say this game is heavy magic.


Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
thorya
post Mar 1 2012, 07:38 PM
Post #10


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 664
Joined: 26-September 11
Member No.: 39,030



QUOTE (Tymeaus Jalynsfein @ Mar 1 2012, 02:22 PM) *
Except that it is not x3 for Stats in SR4A, it is x5. Which is crippling (Literally) with only 300 Karma to spend.


Yes, normally this is true. Except, OP specifically said x3, probably as a way to encourage higher attributes compared to skills. I did make a note of it, when I said (in this system). I was referring to his using x3 rather than x5. Also, Nil_FisK_Urd already pointed out to you that the he was using x3 for these house rules.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Mar 1 2012, 07:56 PM
Post #11


Prime Runner Ascendant
**********

Group: Members
Posts: 17,568
Joined: 26-March 09
From: Aurora, Colorado
Member No.: 17,022



QUOTE (thorya @ Mar 1 2012, 12:38 PM) *
Yes, normally this is true. Except, OP specifically said x3, probably as a way to encourage higher attributes compared to skills. I did make a note of it, when I said (in this system). I was referring to his using x3 rather than x5. Also, Nil_FisK_Urd already pointed out to you that the he was using x3 for these house rules.


Wow... Completely missed the stat ruling used in the OP, and did not see Nil_Fisk_Urd's actual post. So, I stand Corrected. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Tanegar
post Mar 1 2012, 08:34 PM
Post #12


Runner
******

Group: Members
Posts: 2,649
Joined: 29-October 06
Member No.: 9,731



QUOTE (Makki @ Mar 1 2012, 01:50 PM) *
easiest way to make street level characters is to tell the players "go make street level characters".

This, with the added caveat that the GM needs to spell out, in detail, exactly what his vision of a "street-level character" is.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Brainpiercing7.6...
post Mar 1 2012, 10:21 PM
Post #13


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 873
Joined: 16-September 10
Member No.: 19,052



QUOTE (Tanegar @ Mar 1 2012, 07:33 PM) *
300 karma isn't just low, it's crippling. The standard allowance is 750; remember that Build Points translate to karma on a roughly 1:2 basis, not 1:1.

Starting cash is hardly ever a significant amount anyway, unless the character buys a Luxury lifestyle.


I think there's a much simpler way to meet your goals: standard 750-point karmagen; all lifestyles above Low disallowed. Ten thousand nuyen goes FAST, especially for gear-intensive archetypes like street samurai and hackers. Magicians can get away with less gear, but 10k is low even for them.



I chose 300 specifically, because I want to add the debt system. Essentially you are getting a lot more, since your debt is essentially unlimited, well, within reason. But you could get another 40 karma worth of cash via the debt. I also wanted characters to spefically need a reason to go easy on the good qualities to maybe end up with a net gain. Also, I'm using all the bonus karma optional rules which basically means you end up with yet another 80-90 karma.

What I want is character which are basically average joes, for instance, ex-security guards, ex bouncers, ex smallish time criminals, low-life hackers, ex wage slaves, etc. , who aspire to something higher, and will do anything to get there. So this is where the 10k nuyen come in: Basically how much would an average joe like that have been able to afford just from his regular job? Without buying stuff on credit? 10K may be on the low end, but think about how much you could afford with ONLY a low-paying job, and no loans. And this isn't lifestyle, lifestyle can be paid for with a day job. Maybe I should say people get a low lifestyle for free during chargen. Do YOU have 10k dollars worth of runner-worthy gear lying around? And I don't mean skate boards and camping gear. Having little money every month means you can't invest big. So really, the cash limit is the kicker for me.

But then magic becomes a problem, unless I limit that, too. So... basically a strict karma limit, and forcing mages to also take debts seems to be a fair solution. Am I wrong?

QUOTE
My philosophy regarding house rules is that less is more.

House rules that are spelled out on paper are just like another supplement with optional rules. Obviously the players will have to want to play something like this.


QUOTE (Makki @ Mar 1 2012, 07:50 PM) *
easiest way to make street level characters is to tell the players "go make street level characters".
a few restrictions on availability (~8 ), max magic (~3) and max cash (~30k) are ok. But I wouldn't drop total BP/karma too much. 370 BP and 650 karma are very very reasonable. If a players doesn't build a street level character, he has to try again.

I disagree, because simply imposing limits skews the balance - some things are hurt more than others. Actually these 300 in karma can end up with more total points in attributes and overall more skills than some regular 400BP builds. In fact, I'm willing to say that with these rules it is easier to make playable characters with higher dice pools in more areas than with regular 400BP. Because BP really force you to min-max, and absolutely punish broadening out.

QUOTE (thorya @ Mar 1 2012, 07:59 PM) *
I think that 300 karma could work, as long as you're willing to accept that most people are going to have at most 8-9 in their specialties and that it's going to be a very different game. Though, you probably won't see a lot of above average attributes.

with 3x for attributes, it's enough to have (if you start human)-
2 attributes at 4, 3 in every other attribute including edge
3 skills at 4, 6 skills at 3
10 k-nuyen
net 0 qualities

3 and below in attributes, and for the first 2 ranks in skills: karma >= BP.

Most players tend to balance qualities costs anyway (from what I've seen), so the change in value doesn't really matter much. If the point is to start with a lot of pretty mundane, non-cybered characters it works okay.

It's 15 karma to get 3 in an attribute (in this system) and 42 karma to get 5, so the first 300 karma is worth more about as much as the last 450 karma in terms of adding to your dice pools. Really the top level skills and attributes are where you get hurt, but I don't think that's what he wants in the game anyway.

This is my observation also: What happens is that opportunity cost for raising single attributes or skills disproportionately high becomes greater.

8-9 in a specialty skills (disregarding shooting, and some aspects of hacking, which easily get higher) is perfectly fine, because I'm setting the baseline at 6 dice. In my current game, even relative mooks shoot 12 dice easily, or else the game is boring. And these mooks are built with probably similar amounts of points. It is entirely possible to build a street-sam with this: A 4 in agi, add muscle replacement 2, a 4 skill with specialty + smartlink makes 14 dice. Take a cheap automatic, you're set. Soak will be significantly lower, though, than normal. And having little karma just make Orks even better yet. Well, let them shine in this edition.

The other thing is, I really want people to find the cheaper cyberware attactive for a change. When cash is a real issue, but you still really need to get ahead, then you take the small advantages, which cost little money but high essence. With the added caveat that you need to take dangerous runs to scrape in enough cash to pay your debts, you really need to get the most bang for your buck. Maybe I'm seeing this the wrong way, maybe these rules would produce characters that are completely different than what I believe. My idea is to make rules that automatically make characters fit the niche that I want to put them in. Taking a 750 karma character and simply limiting his lifestyle to low doesn't create a street level character.

There are still things which are disproportionately good: The cyberarm of awesome will still rule, probably more now. Cyberdiabetes will still rule. Probably adepts will be fairly good, too, because they can get quite a few cheap dice. Mages I don't know. They can roll reasonably well to cast or summon, but their drain dice will suffer, and their spell selection will be narrow.

I realize I have made no rules for TMs. I really don't know shit about them, I'm finding it hard to put them in perspective. I also forgot a few other things. Which optional rules are available at chargen, etc. This is just a general outline. I'll go over it again tomorrow.

Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
thorya
post Mar 1 2012, 10:53 PM
Post #14


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 664
Joined: 26-September 11
Member No.: 39,030



I like the concept a lot. I'm running a street level campaign. (slightly different concept, but very similar) Started at 300 BP, but everyone wrote their back stories first and I picked an NPC stat block (from the contacts stats, though I think you could also use grunts) that was close to what they described. They started from there and rounded it up to 300 BP. With a few exceptions, such as adjusting the taxi driver to be more of a delivery truck driver which I worked out with the players.

It has worked pretty well so far. Gear was pretty limited and I think the most anyone started with was 40,000 nuyen mostly tied up in vehicles and commlinks. Your players might be different, but I think most of mine decided that they'd rather invest their limited points into skills and attributes and that cyber and gear will come later in the game. They also mostly avoided combat skills because the NPC stats didn't start with many and it didn't fit with most of their character concepts. It's been very awesome to see them think twice about tangling with street thugs, because they could get owned and to see them picking up an Ares Predator as a big piece of equipment.

Good luck with this, I'd love to hear about it if you ever get a game going.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
TwoDee
post Mar 2 2012, 12:01 AM
Post #15


Target
*

Group: Members
Posts: 38
Joined: 24-February 12
From: Los Angeles, California
Member No.: 50,638



My regular Shadowrun GM started his game at 600 karma, which in retrospect I think was a really smart choice. Basically, it's the interim between "you are completely useless dirt gangers" and "you are already more powerful than basically any individual NPC you care to interact with." The characters all started in fairly dire straights, which was more than enough to get them hooked into Shadowrunning (an Awakened serial killer, a fugitive terrorist technomancer, a street sammy tossed in a dumpster with no cash and his mind erased, and a...Japanese...ninja... [one player didn't get the memo]), but at the same time, we had just enough karma to be effectual, to be special, and to feel like player characters without feeling like snowflakes (again, ninja excepted).

I'm generally of the belief that the 750 karma suggested in karmagen is supposed to apply to characters who are professional runners and run for a living already. For instance, when I retired my first character from this campaign and built a second at 750 karma, I was able to build a character who was simultaneously a competent street sammy, hacker, and rigger, with a super-modded hacking suite, car, and gun setup. That level of competence is really only appropriate for people with considerable experience already under their belts. Hell, even in my own game, which had the characters starting out as professionals in fields outside of running, I had the players build off of 700 karma.

That said, both my GM and I use house-rules that give characters a few extra contacts and knowledge skills. It's bloody impossible to incentivise your players to pick up knowledges and contacts without giving them a taste first, because active skills, ware, and specialized equipment carry a more immediate benefit and thus look shinier.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
UmaroVI
post Mar 2 2012, 12:17 AM
Post #16


Shooting Target
****

Group: Members
Posts: 1,700
Joined: 1-July 10
Member No.: 18,778



You say something about how Awakened can buy more spells/magic with In Debt but it isn't clear how that works to me. Can you explain? I'm not sure how to evaluate that.

You say 150 karma for attributes, unmodified by metatype. Which version are you using for that? Are you doing metatypes cost karma=bp? Are you doing metatypes are free?

Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Brainpiercing7.6...
post Mar 2 2012, 12:54 AM
Post #17


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 873
Joined: 16-September 10
Member No.: 19,052



QUOTE (UmaroVI @ Mar 2 2012, 01:17 AM) *
You say something about how Awakened can buy more spells/magic with In Debt but it isn't clear how that works to me. Can you explain? I'm not sure how to evaluate that.

Well... you take out the debt, then buy karma at the chargen going rate of 2500/karma. Then you can use that to raise magic stuff.
QUOTE
You say 150 karma for attributes, unmodified by metatype. Which version are you using for that? Are you doing metatypes cost karma=bp? Are you doing metatypes are free?

I think I said metatypes cost 1xBP, with a max of 40 points allowed. So no free spirits and AIs, but pixies and stuff are still possible.

I'm also using the variant - or it may be the RAW, I don't know right now - that racial mods are always added on after buying - and this stays during play. So cost is not increased for racial mods, it is rather very much decreased if you buy to the identical level. Which is why it's ok to not increase the allowable karma by race.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
UmaroVI
post Mar 2 2012, 01:50 AM
Post #18


Shooting Target
****

Group: Members
Posts: 1,700
Joined: 1-July 10
Member No.: 18,778



It's a houserule - you should probably specify that somewhere. Does that apply to racial penalties? How does that work? Do Trolls have to pay 15 (3x2+3x3) to get Agility 2?
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Makki
post Mar 2 2012, 04:56 AM
Post #19


Running Target
***

Group: Members
Posts: 1,373
Joined: 14-January 10
From: Stuttgart, Germany
Member No.: 18,036



QUOTE (thorya @ Mar 2 2012, 12:53 AM) *
everyone wrote their back stories first and I picked an NPC stat block

great idea!
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Brainpiercing7.6...
post Mar 2 2012, 12:02 PM
Post #20


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 873
Joined: 16-September 10
Member No.: 19,052



QUOTE (UmaroVI @ Mar 2 2012, 02:50 AM) *
It's a houserule - you should probably specify that somewhere. Does that apply to racial penalties? How does that work? Do Trolls have to pay 15 (3x2+3x3) to get Agility 2?


You got me: Actually it's not always a mod. I generally use DK's spreadsheet, which doesn't do penalties correctly, I believe. This is the most favourable and the cheapest way of buying attributes. I'm going to have to spell that out somewhere, good call.

Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
UmaroVI
post Mar 2 2012, 12:43 PM
Post #21


Shooting Target
****

Group: Members
Posts: 1,700
Joined: 1-July 10
Member No.: 18,778



I'll see if I can give you a more detailed analysis in a bit, but I think the result you are going to end up with is Shadowrun: where Troll meets Magic.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
UmaroVI
post Mar 2 2012, 02:47 PM
Post #22


Shooting Target
****

Group: Members
Posts: 1,700
Joined: 1-July 10
Member No.: 18,778



Do you allow people to trade 2500 nuyen for a karma after gameplay starts? Or is this a chargen-only thing?

You have rules for decrepit gear. Do you allow secondhand cyberware as well per the normal rules for it?


Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Brainpiercing7.6...
post Mar 2 2012, 03:22 PM
Post #23


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 873
Joined: 16-September 10
Member No.: 19,052



QUOTE (UmaroVI @ Mar 2 2012, 03:47 PM) *
Do you allow people to trade 2500 nuyen for a karma after gameplay starts? Or is this a chargen-only thing?

You have rules for decrepit gear. Do you allow secondhand cyberware as well per the normal rules for it?


Yes, and yes. Also, things like the house rules for used vehicles haven't been removed.

Well, in my current group we do it, and so far problems have not happened. However, people have cautioned me. Our mage bought quite a bit of karma, as was expected. I think my normal karma rewards are still on the low side, especially considering how slowly this group progresses. On the other hand, the only reason these people have so much money lying around is because they generally don't use the time in between sessions to buy more gear.

Cash for karma and vice versa are things I like very much, but many people believe it will upset the game.

The problems with magic I don't see, unless I forgot to write some things down. I understand that resistance to magic will probably be low, since raising WP won't be high on a lot of people's priorities, given the scarcity of karma.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
UmaroVI
post Mar 2 2012, 03:33 PM
Post #24


Shooting Target
****

Group: Members
Posts: 1,700
Joined: 1-July 10
Member No.: 18,778



I think where you'll see a problem is as follows. The limited gear hurts mundanes very, very badly. The limited magic does hurt magicians...but they can still get good drain stats and OK skills, so it's not nearly as bad. It might be simpler to determine this by making a quick mock-up character or two.

However, the "varying amount of debt" thing kind of adds a monkey wrench. In theory, as debt -> infinity, mundanes start pulling out of the suck heap. But I think it's well past the point of unamanageably huge debt. Like, if you assume the mage is taking 100 karma and the mundane is taking 250000 nuyen from debt, then you probably have parity or maybe even an advantage for the mundane...but that's a 25000 nuyen per month payment just to stay afloat, which is totally unreasonable (and will see both characters falling so far behind everyone else very fast).

Can you suggest what you think is a reasonable amount of debt to compare characters at? I am sure mages are better at 0 debt. Probably mages remain significantly better until you start hitting ginormous debt amounts, but an example is worth a thousand theoryruns.

The other thing you might see, incidentally, is augmented awakened who take 2 magic with plans to go add in 1 essence of 'ware -> raise magic back to 2 -> repeat, which is very efficient in the long run but will start them off weak.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post
Brainpiercing7.6...
post Mar 2 2012, 04:31 PM
Post #25


Moving Target
**

Group: Members
Posts: 873
Joined: 16-September 10
Member No.: 19,052



QUOTE (UmaroVI @ Mar 2 2012, 04:33 PM) *
I think where you'll see a problem is as follows. The limited gear hurts mundanes very, very badly. The limited magic does hurt magicians...but they can still get good drain stats and OK skills, so it's not nearly as bad. It might be simpler to determine this by making a quick mock-up character or two.


I'm doing that at present. The limited gear hurts mundanes insofar as expensive bioware is out of reach, and some setups for equipment heavy character likely as not won't work. The van rigger, for instance, since his toys will be too expensive. You can mourn that, but IMHO any game where a character has hundreds of thousands in equip simply cannot be street level. In my chargen excercises I am currently concentrating on mundanes, and they turn out... sort of ok, not too bad, considering my design goals.

I should put something in that software piracy is possible at chargen. Maybe I should also make skillsofts lower in price again - 10k is too much, 1k is too low, but I'm thinking 10k for a rating 4 skill should be viable, which puts us at 2.5k per rating. That's about SR3 levels. Now you can actually build a viable MBWII character, for instance, by using a Used standard MBWII and buying skillsofts later. This is more efficient than wired reflexes, I believe, since the MBW is light on the essence.

Now the magic, well, you may be right that a mage can buy enough skills and also magic to reasonable amount. Maybe my charop skills aren't enough to see how this can be that much worse. Mages can ALWAYS be stunbolt cannons. There is nothing that can be done about that, IMHO. They will definitely fail in the initiative and initiative passes field, where sustaining foci are expensive, ware is too expensive, and binding F8 spirits of man is out, too. Path adepts I'm seeing as ending up quite good. They can end up the fastest kids on the block with just 2 magic, which leaves 1 point for ware when buying 3 magic. Simply by going more often than the rest they might compensate for having a few dice less than the CAoA sammie.

I'll have to build a mage to check what you can get out of the system as is.
QUOTE
However, the "varying amount of debt" thing kind of adds a monkey wrench. In theory, as debt -> infinity, mundanes start pulling out of the suck heap. But I think it's well past the point of unamanageably huge debt. Like, if you assume the mage is taking 100 karma and the mundane is taking 250000 nuyen from debt, then you probably have parity or maybe even an advantage for the mundane...but that's a 25000 nuyen per month payment just to stay afloat, which is totally unreasonable (and will see both characters falling so far behind everyone else very fast).

Can you suggest what you think is a reasonable amount of debt to compare characters at? I am sure mages are better at 0 debt. Probably mages remain significantly better until you start hitting ginormous debt amounts, but an example is worth a thousand theoryruns.


Paying 25000 every month is clearly too much, and any player should be able to see it. At that point the loan-shark will have you working around the clock just to pay the interest, and you will never lose the debt unless it's a monty haul campaign.

The reality check maximum is probably around 100K in debt. That still probably means you won't be spending a lot on equip until the debt is worked off. But then again, at street level, I'm seeing looting and using used stuff to be a very viable possibility. So I think that still fits my design.

Do you think the variable debt idea will create too many problems with balancing the group? I'm not sure. Debt is a PowerNow! mechanic. Not taking any would leave you with an 6-10 dice low equip mundane crapper, who might eventually - if he survives - surpass the guy with the debt because that guy has to effectively pay so much more for his stuff he got at chargen.
I should make a guy completely without debt to see what I can do with that. Maybe I should also write something in that I do expect everyone to have a varied skill set, so the debt-free guy can't get away with just taking two skills and throwing all this karma into attributes. Maybe I should also try to make a mechanic that actually punishes the guy who is just a tag-along, because he is waiting on become more useful, later. Basically if a guy can't contribute, he gets less money. Or maybe I should just encourage this kind of behaviour within the group? It might cause problems, though, between the players. If a guy turns up with an office slave with no relevant skills whatsoever and only the most basic gear, but the group has to carry him along, because it's a game. I don't like vetoing, but I would have to make it clear that the other players are completely within their rights to withhold most of the payouts from him.

OR maybe I should just mandate a 100k nuyen debt? That way everyone is back on the same page. I don't much like doing that, though.

QUOTE
The other thing you might see, incidentally, is augmented awakened who take 2 magic with plans to go add in 1 essence of 'ware -> raise magic back to 2 -> repeat, which is very efficient in the long run but will start them off weak.

That is definitely a possibility, although I don't see them lowering their magic by more than 2 points, since maximum magic will stay limited. I'm not really that concerned about that, I must say.
Go to the top of the page
 
+Quote Post

3 Pages V   1 2 3 >
Reply to this topicStart new topic

 



RSS Lo-Fi Version Time is now: 22nd October 2020 - 12:27 PM

Topps, Inc has sole ownership of the names, logo, artwork, marks, photographs, sounds, audio, video and/or any proprietary material used in connection with the game Shadowrun. Topps, Inc has granted permission to the Dumpshock Forums to use such names, logos, artwork, marks and/or any proprietary materials for promotional and informational purposes on its website but does not endorse, and is not affiliated with the Dumpshock Forums in any official capacity whatsoever.