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Infornography
post Apr 19 2012, 07:11 PM
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I want to build a Streetsam for our upcoming SR3 game, but never played one before.
In fact, I never bothered much with combat at all. Mostly played deckers or shamans.

But it seems kinda boring to just go the usual way and get wired reflexes, bone lacing, dermal plating, muscle replacement and so on.
What are some interesting builds, concepts and augmentation combinations for streetsams? What about tactics?

I'd be really glad for any kind of advice or book suggestions.

Also; feel free to just discuss Street Samurai in general.
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Chainsaw Samurai
post Apr 19 2012, 07:23 PM
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That is an extremely tall order.

I enjoy Street Samurai the way some people enjoy suping up cars. Granted there is probably a "right way" to build any particular Street Samurai but with certain redundancies built in to the Cyber, Bio, and Gene system you can get a lot of variation.

I spent hours the other night making 4 copies of essentially the same character, winding up with approximately the same stats (little higher here, little lower there) and I have no idea which one is the "best" of the bunch.

So your topic is a little bit vague. The Street Samurai is an archetype that can further be broken down into smaller archetypes (Tanks, Gillettes, shooters, etc) so if you're looking for a direction to go in, you're going to have to be a bit more specific.


Edit: I missed the SR3 tag. I no longer have most of those books (not by choice, so don't get on me for not being sentimental and keeping them, cause I would have). Hopefully someone else will be able to give you a hand, but again you're going to have to be a bit more specific as to what you're trying to build.
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HaxDBeheader
post Apr 19 2012, 07:55 PM
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Yes, personal style and team role are dominant factors.
Another major consideration that gets overlooked in a lot of these discussions is where your gaming group sits on the pink mohawk vs black trenchcoat scale? Aka A-Team vs Bourne Identity.
There are just too many possible combinations to list otherwise: most flavours of cyber-torso & multi-limb are way too obtuse to survive long in a black trenchcoat game while most flavours of subtle biosams don't have the over the top power needed to survive pink mohawk games.
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Infornography
post Apr 19 2012, 07:59 PM
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I wasn't talking about the "best" or the "right way" to make a streetsam, by all means.
I'm interesting in making an interesting character that's not just increased attributes and bonus dice.

Personally I prefer to be quick and agile over brute strength and the ability to withstand insane amounts of damage.
But I don't just want to go wired reflexes 3. I was thinking of setting the focus on awareness and perception.
Cybereyes, orientation system, radar and so on. Maybe even a few drones but without going full rigger.
I also understand that there's a lot to be gained from the Small Unit Tactics skill, but didn't quite get it all.
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Infornography
post Apr 19 2012, 08:01 PM
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@HaxDBeheader

My GM said it be really Low-Power, therefor I suspect what you described as black trenchcoat.
I also want to ignore Bioware entirely. Or at chargen at least.
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Lantzer
post Apr 19 2012, 08:04 PM
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Like CS said, it depends on what kind of sammie you want to play.
The usual roles of a sammie in a SR group can include:
    Intimidation - Looking burly and dangerous
    Distraction - Make a pest out of yourself so your team can do its job.
    Troubleshooter - When trouble starts, Shoot it.
    Excrement remover - Kill or blow up anything between your team and the exit.
    Reserve Player - The 2nd string at another specialty, because you never know...


These roles can be accomplished in a wide variety of ways. That's where individual style comes in.
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Infornography
post Apr 19 2012, 08:15 PM
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@Lantzer

The careful and adaptable kind I guess. Maybe a mix of Distraction and Reserve Player. An allrounder pretty much.
In any case, I don't plan to waltz in like KillerMcKillington but I don't intend to go "Ninja" either.
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Lantzer
post Apr 19 2012, 08:16 PM
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QUOTE (Infornography @ Apr 19 2012, 07:59 PM) *
I wasn't talking about the "best" or the "right way" to make a streetsam, by all means.
I'm interesting in making an interesting character that's not just increased attributes and bonus dice.

Personally I prefer to be quick and agile over brute strength and the ability to withstand insane amounts of damage.
But I don't just want to go wired reflexes 3. I was thinking of setting the focus on awareness and perception.
Cybereyes, orientation system, radar and so on. Maybe even a few drones but without going full rigger.
I also understand that there's a lot to be gained from the Small Unit Tactics skill, but didn't quite get it all.


Heres a starting point then...

Building for situational awareness is a good route for a sam. It can be subtle or overt. Drones can be useful using captain's chair, for no more essense cost than a datajack (get the computer programming skill for phrasing orders to drones and making preprogramed commands, because drones have teeny brains).

Basically with this idea you are looking at a situation controller - Small unit tactics can be very useful, but only if your GM agrees, and you are willing to go to some detail. What really makes that skill work out is the battletac system, detailed to some degree in Man & machine, Rigger 3, and the Companion, IRC. The cyber tactcical computer is a high-essense implant that really helps out with using that skill in an otherwise busy environment. It may be overcomplicated for a first-time Sam.

'Ware wise, go for understated if you aren't going for brute power and speed. There are many more things a subtle sam can do than an obvious goon.
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Critias
post Apr 19 2012, 08:30 PM
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Yes.

For the build you seem to be leaning towards, in SR3? Combat Pool is king. Get yourself a ton of Small Unit Tactics, a very nice cyberware suite built around perception, and a Tactical Computer. Every sense you've got feeding into into the TacComp helps some SUT, SUT can give extra dice to a bunch of stuff, and you get to feel very smart and awesome (instead of just strong/tough and awesome).

Ideally, of course, anyone calling themselves a Street Samurai is going to have some direct combat augmentations, as well, because part of the job expectations involve at least a little bit of being strong and fast and tough, too...but the SUT/Combat Pool/Perception type build can be very, very, fun to play.
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Bearclaw
post Apr 19 2012, 08:46 PM
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I like the straight human stealth vat job. Basically, you just use (almost) all bioware for your cyber, so you can get through security without hassles. Bone density aug, superthyroid, enhanced articulation, syanptic accelerators, synthacardium all work well together and aren't detectable. Add some perfectly legal and common cyber eyes with a smartlink and you're set.
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Infornography
post Apr 19 2012, 08:55 PM
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@Critias & Lantzer

Tactical computer sounds great and just like what I need.
I've played deckers before so I don't really mind having to read into tech stuff.

@Bearclaw
Except that your legal cybereyes aren't that legal anymore when you add a smartlink.
Also in SR3 smartlinks are seperate ware and not just an option for eyes like in SR4.
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Infornography
post Apr 19 2012, 09:08 PM
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The description of the Battletac Master Component is kind of vague.
It says that it can grant Initiative and Small Unit Tactics bonus dice,
but not how much and under what circumstances.

Or is it identical to the Tactical Computer Implant?
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Lantzer
post Apr 20 2012, 03:48 AM
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QUOTE (Infornography @ Apr 19 2012, 09:55 PM) *
@Bearclaw
Except that your legal cybereyes aren't that legal anymore when you add a smartlink.
Also in SR3 smartlinks are seperate ware and not just an option for eyes like in SR4.


In SR3, IIRC, Man&Machine had rules for breaking a Smartlink into peices. The only part in the eyes was the display, which could be left out if you had an image link. There were other parts which could also be replaced or hidden/disguised.
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Lantzer
post Apr 20 2012, 03:56 AM
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QUOTE (Infornography @ Apr 19 2012, 10:08 PM) *
The description of the Battletac Master Component is kind of vague.
It says that it can grant Initiative and Small Unit Tactics bonus dice,
but not how much and under what circumstances.

Or is it identical to the Tactical Computer Implant?


It IS vague, I'll agree. When I put together a system, I had to piece together rules and extrapolate from 3 books.

The way I understood it, the Tactical computer is a cyber version of the BTac master with some extra functionality. The battle tac master _only_ helps Small unit tactics. The results of the SUT roll give bonuses to either initiative or combat pool. The Tactical computer does everything a Btac master does, plus some extra bonuses. A nonj-cyber Btac system also takes larger actions to use than the cyber versions.

Wire a tactical computer into a Tactical Com system and give your freinds slave units, and you get more inputs and can give them advice to give them bonuses, for a small action investment.

Wire a tactical computer into a Remote control deck and drones with Btac upgrades, and you have an automated drone squad that acts smarter and more perceptive than normal.
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_Pax._
post Apr 20 2012, 04:46 AM
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QUOTE (Bearclaw @ Apr 19 2012, 03:46 PM) *
I like the straight human stealth vat job. Basically, you just use (almost) all bioware for your cyber, so you can get through security without hassles. Bone density aug, superthyroid, enhanced articulation, syanptic accelerators, synthacardium all work well together and aren't detectable. Add some perfectly legal and common cyber eyes with a smartlink and you're set.

Bone Density can be replaced with Plastic, Kevlar, or Ceramic Bonelacing. None of those will show up on typical MAD scanners or the like.
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kzt
post Apr 20 2012, 05:39 AM
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QUOTE (Infornography @ Apr 19 2012, 02:01 PM) *
My GM said it be really Low-Power, therefor I suspect what you described as black trenchcoat.

Black trenchcoat is playing style, not a power level. We had a black trenchcoat game where we had a t-bird. We were just very careful in how we used it. And how we delivered and positioned the three semis it needed to operate. ...

It's really more of a game style where there are longer-term consequences for things you do or mistakes you made. Where the police/corp-sec actually understand how to investigate crimes and gather evidence and hence one of the main objectives is for nobody to notice the you had been there, or failing that, to have the people who you do things to be unwilling to discuss the matter with LE types.

Convincing the data center security guards to help you load their mainframe into your truck due to forged work orders, a hacked system and a fast talking face is a classic black trenchcoat type of run. You have to be able to effectively fight, but you need to be able to not be obvious and able to do something else effectively.

In a pink mohawk game you kill everyone in the HQ and then burn down the entire complex to cover up the fact that you stole the CEO's favorite set of golfclubs. You should take a LOT of combat related skills for that style. Obvious combat related cyberware is expected and useful.
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Tiralee
post Apr 20 2012, 08:04 AM
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As mentioned before - it's all 'bout personal style and how you play.

But you're going to need:
*2-4 combat skills level 5-6 [ie: be able to dish out pain]
* A healthy body/layered armour combo [so you can take the odd lucky shot and shrug it off]
* A vehicle skill [Nobody respects the Street Sam who takes the bus]
* Ett & Neg [or you're going to be working for peanuts and shooting people rather than intimidating them]
* A fall-back skill, like biotech, electronics, some B/R skills
* Enhanced Articulation.

And the biggest, fattest combat pool you can get, combined with a decent reaction and multiple d6 initiative dice.
If you're doing advantages/disadvantages, "Perceptive" is a real cheap way to get the leg up on the opposition.
Also, in SR3, Quickness is king, because that's dodge rolls (to avoid being shot) until the sun burns out without touching your precious combat pool.

Humans: most points to go into skills, cyber, etc. Also the usual 6th orld racism crap is a non-issue
Orcs: Cheap Gillettes, nice Strength bonus. Make for good, cheap, disposable characters. Custard for the blood god!
Elves: Dodge and extra points in Charisma so your dumpstat isn't a dumpstat. Bit pricy though, but the Quickness bonus is worth it.
Trolls: Heavy, heavy hitters. The Troll Metavarients are the most abused out there (see: "I've got a troll with a bow, why is the panzer trying to escape from me?" threads.) and if your GM is using "the Strength as a recoil modifier" rules, the troll with the machine gun is your favourite cliche.
Dwarves: Never really in the running, unless you're in it for the flavour and the resistance to toxin/posion/disease/whatever. You can abuse the Dwarf build with enough cyber so that the speed issue becomes moot.


But AS ALWAYS, it's up to you, as the player, to work out what sort of hitter you're going to be.
But for the love of the gods, don't be yet another "Speeeeecial Forrrrrrces" rambo clone.

-Tir.
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Infornography
post Apr 20 2012, 10:55 AM
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@kzt
I never said it was. I said I suspect it's what our GM going for.
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Kagetenshi
post Apr 20 2012, 01:11 PM
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QUOTE (Infornography @ Apr 19 2012, 03:01 PM) *
@HaxDBeheader

My GM said it be really Low-Power, therefor I suspect what you described as black trenchcoat.
I also want to ignore Bioware entirely. Or at chargen at least.

Low-power in the sense of being a bunch of street toughs, or low-power in the sense of not being walking death machines? If the latter you can get creative with things like the magnetic system, climbing claws, balance augmenter, and so on to get some impressive mobility and ability to make approaches from unexpected directions.

QUOTE (Critias @ Apr 19 2012, 03:30 PM) *
For the build you seem to be leaning towards, in SR3? Combat Pool is king. Get yourself a ton of Small Unit Tactics, a very nice cyberware suite built around perception, and a Tactical Computer. Every sense you've got feeding into into the TacComp helps some SUT, SUT can give extra dice to a bunch of stuff, and you get to feel very smart and awesome (instead of just strong/tough and awesome).

I'm dubious about the utility of the Tactical Computer to non-Riggers—everyone else just doesn't have enough senses to get substantial bonuses. It's been a while since I looked at exactly which cybermods were considered to add senses, but I remember it being pretty slim pickings.

QUOTE (_Pax._ @ Apr 19 2012, 11:46 PM) *
Bone Density can be replaced with Plastic, Kevlar, or Ceramic Bonelacing. None of those will show up on typical MAD scanners or the like.

In one of the less-inspired moments of the SR3 rules, cyberware isn't detected by MAD scanners but by a different Cyberware Scanner which has no provision for making those kinds of lacing harder to detect.

~J
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Lantzer
post Apr 20 2012, 02:25 PM
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QUOTE (Kagetenshi @ Apr 20 2012, 01:11 PM) *
I'm dubious about the utility of the Tactical Computer to non-Riggers—everyone else just doesn't have enough senses to get substantial bonuses. It's been a while since I looked at exactly which cybermods were considered to add senses, but I remember it being pretty slim pickings.


Depends on what you call a rigger. A No-VCR streetsam never has to run the drone directly, but a couple of extra cameras/sensors help if your drones/RCdeck are set up right. You can also get feeds from your allies' guncams or cyber (Every set of cybereyes or cameras can help) using battletac slave units. In addtion, if your team is set up with battletac slave units, for the price of an action every now and then to use Small Unit Tactics, you can give them Init or Combat Pool bonuses too, which often helps the old "Keep team from dying" role.
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Infornography
post Apr 20 2012, 02:43 PM
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QUOTE (Kagetenshi @ Apr 20 2012, 02:11 PM) *
Low-power in the sense of being a bunch of street toughs, or low-power in the sense of not being walking death machines? If the latter you can get creative with things like the magnetic system, climbing claws, balance augmenter, and so on to get some impressive mobility and ability to make approaches from unexpected directions.


Both kinda. We're starting really low to become actual runners some day.
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Critias
post Apr 20 2012, 03:58 PM
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QUOTE (Kagetenshi @ Apr 20 2012, 08:11 AM) *
I'm dubious about the utility of the Tactical Computer to non-Riggers—everyone else just doesn't have enough senses to get substantial bonuses. It's been a while since I looked at exactly which cybermods were considered to add senses, but I remember it being pretty slim pickings.

Each sense worked as a separate input, and -- here's the kicker for sammies -- every variation of a sense also counted as a sense; so low-light, thermo, normal vision, and ultrasound vision all counted as an individual sense themselves, for example, not just as "sight" (because later in Man and Machine it specifically mentions that you can use multiple vision systems at a time, overlaying them atop one another). Add stuff like the Orientation System (which is two senses in and of itself!), all the cyberaudio boosts a good sammie is packing, etc? It can all add up pretty fast. I mean, right there, off the top of my head, this character's looking at 3/4 of the maximum Combat Pool bonus, and without using their (augmented) ears yet, at all.

The thing is to remember that it's not like this is all the character can do. It augments things anyone even nominally a street samurai is already good at -- combat pool, and reaction (for surprise/ambush in particular). As long as you've got the reasonable stats/skills to back it up, it just piles potential on top of potential. If you've got a head for the TN/probability game, and know when to use that CP in order to get the most out of it...well...some crazy stuff can go down.
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Stahlseele
post Apr 20 2012, 06:43 PM
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Boosted Reflexes Level 3.
Allows for cheapish IniBoost and later on for 4 ini die with synaptic booster.
Smartlink
Plastic Bones
All Ear and Eyeware you can cram into him.
Forget about Attribute boosting stuff for the most part.
As the no bio samurai you need to get target numbers down rather than anything else.
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Infornography
post Apr 20 2012, 08:59 PM
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@Stahlseele

I'm pretty sure boosted reflexes and synaptic boosters aren't compatible with each other.

That aside, I'll take wired reflexes 1 at most. Maybe upgrade it later but that's not my concern for now.
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Apr 20 2012, 09:15 PM
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QUOTE (Infornography @ Apr 20 2012, 01:59 PM) *
@Stahlseele

I'm pretty sure boosted reflexes and synaptic boosters aren't compatible with each other.


I am pretty sure you would be surprised. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
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