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> Spell - Influence, How far do you have to go, Sr3 - Question about control manipulation
Acenoid
post May 26 2014, 07:36 PM
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Hi there!

As a new GM, I still struggle very hard to balance the game and keepin the players at bay. At the moment they are doing very well. Shooting down the opposition quicker than I can fill out the damage boxes. Just with the drones I put a little too much armor on it, and we had to find some special rule to make them able to overcome the obstacle.

Now, we have a bad-ass mage in the group. He has some mind control spells like "influence" and it seemed to work quite well at the moment to easily grab off clues and find solutions without the groups own effort, because I assume most persons have a willpower between 3-5, so they are no match for his abilities it seems.

When he casts influence on someone, and is just matching the willpower/2 of the victim, the spell succeeds. Correct?
Now since it's a perm. spell he has to keep it up 15 rounds (45 seconds or so), though it's effect starts immediately. Correct?

Now the players suggestion is: "you want to give us the project reference code belonging to this piece of information", he hands over a piece of paper to the victim. The victim thinks how he could accomplish this task:
- He would have to attempt to get a proper access because its a different work area and he has to figure out certain ways, calling people asking them for the code, or checking in the computer systems...
- There are a multitude of possibilities from here and since the victim is an employee he would have access to most clues which I laid out for the group to find. Now those clues could be utilized by the victim instead.

So he would start walking silently towards the goal of his task....doing whatever is necessary to accomplish the goal.

2nd Problem with influence:
What would the command "roll over the floor 5.000.000 times", now would the person have to do this until he dies? What happens when he can no longer perform the task?

Or even worse:
"Become my best friend", now would the person be bound to the character, all emotions, fears washed away?

I hope you have some suggestions for me because I don't want to nerf the players but I want to play out the spells as they are intended...
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Cain
post May 27 2014, 01:03 AM
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Influence is basically the Jedi Mind trick. It's a short-lived, single-shot command that happens then fades. Also, if someone points out that the suggestion is wrong, he gets a willpower test against it. Additionally, if they command isn't possible, the victim might try to do it, fail, then the command fades.

So, if he uses Influence to get the access code, they victim will write down the access code. That's it. He won't do anything more. If the mage tries to get him to do something more involved, that's fine, but then they run the risk of encountering other people, who might say something as simple as "What are you up to, Joe?" Technically, that's enough to trigger a willpower test to break the Influence.

As for "roll over 5,000.000 times", the victim would try as best he could; but once he fails (by hitting a wall, for example), he'd stop, and the Influence would fade. Influence isn't suicidal.

"Become my best friend": Okay, he's now their best friend. For a few seconds, because then the Influence fades, and things go back to normal.

Some of what you describe can be done under Control Thoughts, but that has a higher Drain code and is a sustained spell, which means it's noticeable to any astrally-viewing entity. Control Thoughts can give suicidal commands, but you still get the Willpower test to resist them. Influence, however, isn't meant to be that powerful. It's very flexible, but it doesn't have that sort of fine control or raw power.
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Acenoid
post May 27 2014, 04:45 PM
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What is with a command that I would apply into the future "Tonight at 10 pm leave open the balcony door for the remainder of the night" - if its summer and doesnt cross the victim's plans it would work right? if its winter and cold and makes no sense its a willpower test, or he might even close the dor after a while again because he's freezing..?
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Bigity
post May 27 2014, 06:23 PM
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These spells always give me flashbacks to AD&D spells. And all the time spent trying to hash out a common ground between the player and the DM.
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Cain
post May 28 2014, 07:10 AM
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QUOTE (Acenoid @ May 27 2014, 08:45 AM) *
What is with a command that I would apply into the future "Tonight at 10 pm leave open the balcony door for the remainder of the night" - if its summer and doesnt cross the victim's plans it would work right? if its winter and cold and makes no sense its a willpower test, or he might even close the dor after a while again because he's freezing..?

Pretty much, yeah. It's not direct mind control, it's a single suggestion. Once he completes the command, it fades, so you can't even order him to leave the door open all night; once he opens it the entire thing is gone from his mind.

QUOTE (Bigity @ May 27 2014, 10:23 AM) *
These spells always give me flashbacks to AD&D spells. And all the time spent trying to hash out a common ground between the player and the DM.

Influence can be problematical, but honestly, I had a harder time with Control Thoughts and Control Emotions. Control Emotions was the worst one: the player would whine "He feels like this, so he should act like I want him to!" Welp, in reality, people react very differently to the same emotions. Control Thoughts was just plain broken.
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sk8bcn
post May 28 2014, 08:23 AM
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QUOTE (Acenoid @ May 26 2014, 09:36 PM) *
Just with the drones I put a little too much armor on it, and we had to find some special rule to make them able to overcome the obstacle.


By the way, what can you do against an armor 6 drone?
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Tiralee
post May 28 2014, 11:15 AM
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Offhand?
Panther cannon, lightning bolt, ECM, glue, slip'n'spray, Directed energy weapon, HiEX, A bigger drone, Shape Water, Shape Earth, Wreck <object>, "Urban Renewal (as per the spell), Spirit with accident power, Elementals with a grudge....


And so on and so forth.

Oh, monowire! Shock strip! Static! Directed Illusion! A bigger Rigger transmitter, sheesh, it's not hard:)


-Tir
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sk8bcn
post May 28 2014, 04:17 PM
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That was not what I meant.

I mean, am I right to think that without exceptionnal material, you cannot handle an armor 6 drone or does it exist a special rule about that (like a called shot or something)
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Acenoid
post May 29 2014, 04:42 AM
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QUOTE (sk8bcn @ May 28 2014, 06:17 PM) *
That was not what I meant.

I mean, am I right to think that without exceptionnal material, you cannot handle an armor 6 drone or does it exist a special rule about that (like a called shot or something)



That is correct. As a newish GM I didnt really notice that. We just ruled that the Runners can fire with a +6 TN to hit an unshielded part of the drone / vehicle.
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Cain
post May 29 2014, 07:44 AM
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QUOTE (sk8bcn @ May 28 2014, 01:23 AM) *
By the way, what can you do against an armor 6 drone?

In SR3? Great Dragon ATGM's are legal to start with, and they make a mess out of even the most heavily armored vehicle or drone. They're also cheap enough that you can carry a few in your trunk. Whenever I made a heavy offense character, they had at least a few stashed away; and my riggers all have stockpiles of them for anti-vehicle combat. (And anti-spirit, if it came to that.)
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sk8bcn
post Jun 3 2014, 09:07 AM
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well, ok but officially, rule wise, having either an assault riffle, a SMG or a heavy pistol, you're screwed, you must flee.
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jun 3 2014, 12:55 PM
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QUOTE (sk8bcn @ Jun 3 2014, 02:07 AM) *
well, ok but officially, rule wise, having either an assault riffle, a SMG or a heavy pistol, you're screwed, you must flee.


Not really - If you can get your damage scaled to Deadly, then the drone WILL take damage (Body 6 can only reduce to Light wound from Deadly). So, it may take time, but you CAN whittle it down bit by bit. If your Power starts above 6, then that Drone can't just roll 2's to soak either. A Heavy Pistol is 9M, so 4 Net makes that 9D. With 6 Body Dice to soak that, you are likely to only get 4 Hits, so that is a Moderate Wound, not a light one (and it will ALWAYS inflict that Light wound if scaled to Deadly). The Drone WILL go away, it will just take a few passes.
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Bigity
post Jun 3 2014, 01:29 PM
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Successes damn you (IMG:style_emoticons/default/nyahnyah.gif) Not hits (IMG:style_emoticons/default/biggrin.gif)
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jun 3 2014, 01:37 PM
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QUOTE (Bigity @ Jun 3 2014, 06:29 AM) *


Mea Culpa. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
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sk8bcn
post Jun 4 2014, 09:35 AM
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QUOTE
Damage Reduction
A vehicle’s solidity and heaviness when compared to
other targets (people, for example) reduces the Power of all
weapon attacks by half (round down)
and the Damage Level of
all weapon attacks by one (except for weapons that fire antivehicle
munitions). For example, an attack from an Ares Predator,
which normally does 9M damage, would do 4L to a vehicle.
Weapons that normally inflict Light damage do not affect
vehicles. For more information, see Vehicle Damage from
Weapons, p. 149.


QUOTE
ARMOR
The Armor Rating represents composite armor that protects
the vehicle against all weapons fire (see Vehicle Combat,
p. 138). Vehicle armor is hardened armor, meaning that it can
deflect all damage from weapons with a Power (modified by
the vehicle’s Body, but not by burst or autofire) equal to or less
than the Armor Rating.
For example, if a vehicle has Armor Rating
3, no weapon with a Power Rating of 6 or lower can penetrate
it; firing at the vehicle with a Uzi III (6M Damage) gets you
a bunch of sparks for your efforts.
Against fire from a weapon with a Power Rating that
exceeds the Armor Rating, the armor reduces the Power of the
attack like standard ballistic or impact armor. For example, Rating
3 Armor reduces the Power of fire from an Ares Predator
(normally 9M, reduced to 4L by the vehicle’s Body) to 1L.



Doesn't the bold parts means that I cannot hit the drone at all.

My Predator is 4L against the drone, so the armor 6 drone is immune to it.

No?
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Bigity
post Jun 4 2014, 01:26 PM
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That is correct.

However, AV Ammo (removes the Power reduction and Damage Level reduction) can be found on page 36, Cannon Companion. Course, Availability on those is 16/2wks.
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sk8bcn
post Jun 4 2014, 02:04 PM
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Ahhhh perfect!

That's exactely the kind of info I was looking for!
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jun 4 2014, 02:12 PM
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QUOTE (sk8bcn @ Jun 4 2014, 03:35 AM) *
Doesn't the bold parts means that I cannot hit the drone at all.

My Predator is 4L against the drone, so the armor 6 drone is immune to it.

No?


Ooops, forgot about the reduction due to Hardened Armor. But yes, AV Ammo is the way to go. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
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Cain
post Jun 5 2014, 11:13 AM
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AV ammo is so good as to be frankly ridiculous, after a certain point characters will try to carry it instead of normal ammo. It doesn't just make a mess out of vehicles, it does nasty things to squishy metahumans as well. I actually toyed with a few rules to make it less effective against soft targets, due to mumbo-jumbo about overpenetration. Never got around to it, though.
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Bigity
post Jun 5 2014, 02:42 PM
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Yea basically you get ADPS and AV benefits at the same time. Never really came up with a solution either, but I don't recall it coming up all that much.
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Cain
post Jun 6 2014, 12:07 AM
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QUOTE (Bigity @ Jun 5 2014, 07:42 AM) *
Yea basically you get ADPS and AV benefits at the same time. Never really came up with a solution either, but I don't recall it coming up all that much.

It tended to come up later in the campaign, when the runners can afford to use specialty ammo. Since they should also be facing tougher opposition, this isn't too bad for use against the type of vehicles they'll be facing. But since it made APDS obsolete, I saw it used more against people than vehicles.
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jun 6 2014, 01:20 PM
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QUOTE (Cain @ Jun 5 2014, 06:07 PM) *
It tended to come up later in the campaign, when the runners can afford to use specialty ammo. Since they should also be facing tougher opposition, this isn't too bad for use against the type of vehicles they'll be facing. But since it made APDS obsolete, I saw it used more against people than vehicles.


APDS was still Cheaper, so it was never obsolete. But once you have several clips of AV, there is no real need to switch out unless you are saving nuyen.
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Cain
post Jun 7 2014, 09:18 AM
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QUOTE (Tymeaus Jalynsfein @ Jun 6 2014, 06:20 AM) *
APDS was still Cheaper, so it was never obsolete. But once you have several clips of AV, there is no real need to switch out unless you are saving nuyen.

APDS was cheaper, but the hefty power advantage of AV more than outweighed that. If you had a choice between APDS now and saving up for AV later, it was usually better to save up.
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Tymeaus Jalynsfe...
post Jun 7 2014, 04:59 PM
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QUOTE (Cain @ Jun 7 2014, 03:18 AM) *
APDS was cheaper, but the hefty power advantage of AV more than outweighed that. If you had a choice between APDS now and saving up for AV later, it was usually better to save up.


Maybe, But I was always in the Now, especially in SR3. If I needed APDS even tangentially, It was far cheaper to buy several clips and have them on hand than to wait for the AV rounds and be in a bind when you needed AP rounds and did not have them.
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Tiralee
post Jun 8 2014, 11:12 AM
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Re: AV/APDS rounds -
Unless your campaign has gone down the rabbithole to hell, AV rounds are pretty damn hard to find and source, without a lot of time and money. Not to mention the FOF possibilities of the law finding out that a bunch of coked-up gangers wanted a few thousand AV rounds, "for pig-bustin'".

About the largest amount you'd find was a swiped belt suitable for a LMG/HMG/Assault Cannon - AV rounds in hold-out pistols, not so much. And forget about loading up your drones with a bin of the good stuff, those shells were (IMG:style_emoticons/default/nuyen.gif) 20 a pop, not counting the x4 availability (and COST) multiplier.
So if your Steel Lynx™ is armed with a HVAR with AV rounds, it'd be cheaper to simply install a few Redline ™ lasers instead:)

-Tir
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