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> Magic and the law
Spook
post Sep 24 2004, 12:20 AM
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Okay, so spells and foci over a particular force rating (two? three?) are illegal under UCAS law - which makes sense in terms of the Shadowrun universe as it gives the corporations and such another edge over the law-abiding citizen.

But my question is - how can this be enforced with any legitimacy? I've never described something as being a "force 5 hellblast" in character. Other than the size of an area effect spell, how does a Lone Star cop tell the difference between a force 2 manabolt and a force 4 manabolt and then sucsessfully press charges based on these things?

Of course, this would assume that the star wasn't completely corrupt and quite willing to write off a SINless runner as "shot while trying to escape"...
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Kagetenshi
post Sep 24 2004, 12:32 AM
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General power. A Force 3 xyzzy might very well go unnoticed, but by the time you're at Force 4 the difference is probably noticeable.

~J
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Tanka
post Sep 24 2004, 12:45 AM
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IIRC (how the hell that means "If I Recall" is beyond me. If anything it should be IIR. Anyway), with a proper Astral Perception test, can't you find the general force of a spell in relation to your Magic Rating or somesuch?
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Kanada Ten
post Sep 24 2004, 12:46 AM
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If I Recall Correctly.
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Tanka
post Sep 24 2004, 12:48 AM
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Ah, that would be it.

Crazy brain and its not working-ness.
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Adarael
post Sep 24 2004, 01:05 AM
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The forces of object are actually an in-character mechanic, mentioned in (I believe) Awakenings. It's a system not everybody uses, but it's a Hermetic system for benchmarking the raw amount of astral energy a particular spell can channel based on some bizzare mathematical formula.

In game, it's measured by astral sight, and possibly lingering spell signature at the site of a spell.
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mrobviousjosh
post Sep 24 2004, 01:35 AM
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Interesting point. Astral signatures by Lonestar mages are probably the most widely used way that's done. Anyway, I wonder about a Force 4 spell that's scaled down to a Force 2 one temporarily (I believe you can scale down spells but I never play magic users).
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Kagetenshi
post Sep 24 2004, 01:57 AM
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You can, and it should be essentially indistinguishable from a native Force 2 spell.

~J
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Adarael
post Sep 24 2004, 02:00 AM
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That's the way I rez it. You only see the spell at the force it's cast at, not what the magician is *capable* of casting it at.
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UpSyndrome
post Sep 24 2004, 03:15 AM
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People have a natural tendency to quantify things, so I don't have much problem using terminology such as "force 5 manabolt" or "rating 2 wired reflexes" in character. And it sure makes things easier.

-Joe
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Spook
post Sep 24 2004, 12:04 PM
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I guess that I'll have to re-read awakenings then (not that I mind, it's still one of my fave sourcebooks). If the hermetics have managed a system, then it's all settled I guess.

Just had trouble pondering how to measure an arbitrary amount of energy without any sort of tools other than astral observers.

Thanks for the responses, everyone!
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Edward
post Sep 24 2004, 12:07 PM
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An astral perception test on a focus or active spell will give the force it was cast at.

It also limits access to spell formula (you need a licence to by one legally above the force limit.

Edward
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spotlite
post Sep 24 2004, 06:42 PM
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Yeah, i'm pretty sure its a scale with a name and everything, like the Richter scale. And again, I think it is in Awakenings, in the IC blurb in the first chapter or so.

Hey, does anyone know what the limits are on wards and that kind of thing? is that also limited to R2 in UCAS? Seems a little extreme, is all. Is there a limit on Spirit Force? I know that if they do anything illegal the mage is considered guilty of the crime and I might've read somewhere that they (and use of deadly spells) also are considered premeditated, but I can't remember if the actual force of spirits is limited as well.
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Necro Tech
post Sep 24 2004, 08:43 PM
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In our game, magic is quantified on the MIT & T scale. Most people use it and I'm not sure if it was made up or was included in an old edition somewhere.

Wards don't carry a limit that I am aware of and spirits might only because they are considered an extension of the mage summoning them. In that regard, they are like spells.
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RedmondLarry
post Sep 24 2004, 10:36 PM
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In our game we can never remember the name of the scale. So when we do have to say it we make something up (like the Kagetenshi-Spook scale) and everyone nods in agreement.
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spotlite
post Sep 24 2004, 10:45 PM
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QUOTE (OurTeam)
In our game we can never remember the name of the scale. So when we do have to say it we make something up (like the Kagetenshi-Spook scale) and everyone nods in agreement.

Are you one of my players...? ;)
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k1tsune
post Sep 24 2004, 11:28 PM
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QUOTE (OurTeam)
In our game we can never remember the name of the scale. So when we do have to say it we make something up (like the Kagetenshi-Spook scale) and everyone nods in agreement.

It scares me when my first SR GM finds his way into the titles of things.
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Cynic project
post Sep 24 2004, 11:40 PM
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i would like to add some spell should be ilegal reguardless of their force. Say Slay human. A force 1 slay human should be more illegal than say a force 6 treat spell.
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Fygg Nuuton
post Sep 25 2004, 12:14 AM
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the spells in the book are just for rules, your slay human spell can be called "happy fun time spell", it just happens to kill humans ;)

also think of a high e level treat spell to be like practicing medicine without a license, a force 2 treat spell is just like performing first aid
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hyzmarca
post Sep 25 2004, 06:56 AM
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QUOTE (Fygg Nuuton @ Sep 24 2004, 07:14 PM)


also think of a high e level treat spell to be like practicing medicine without a license, a force 2 treat spell is just like performing first aid

The difference there is that a person can be seriously injured by a botched surgery. No matter how badly a mage fails to cast treat, it will never injure anyone.
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BitBasher
post Sep 25 2004, 07:00 AM
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QUOTE (hyzmarca)
QUOTE (Fygg Nuuton @ Sep 24 2004, 07:14 PM)


also think of a high e level treat spell to be like practicing medicine without a license, a force 2 treat spell is just like performing first aid

The difference there is that a person can be seriously injured by a botched surgery. No matter how badly a mage fails to cast treat, it will never injure anyone.

That's not true. Rule of ones, A botch can do anything at the gamemaster's discresion. In a lot of cases that definitely may include injuring the target.
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Adarael
post Sep 25 2004, 08:47 PM
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There's a much better reason why practicing magical medicine is such a huge no-no.

A) It renders Pharmeceutical companies obsolete.
B) It renders the eliteness of the doctor 'obsolete' (and replaces it with another elite, but the doctors wouldn't care about that)
C) It keeps medicine from being practiced outside of the oversight of insurance companies.

In general, it weakens the authority of the entire UCAS medical system and the authority vested IN that system, because it's cheaper, faster, and involves less megacorporations.

Which, as we know, pisses them off.
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Fygg Nuuton
post Sep 25 2004, 09:05 PM
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if you break your leg and heal it with the treat spell, does it set itself and heal or just heal?

i rule it has to first be set or you wont heal correctly, which could be real bad
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Da9iel
post Sep 26 2004, 04:09 AM
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Yet another reason to do first-aid first.
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BitBasher
post Sep 26 2004, 04:55 AM
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And in my game yes ot does reseat the bone. Because if it didn't that would lead to a contradiction as it coule never get you to 0 boxes of damage, which it can.
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