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> Adepts and Cybereyes, Official opinion
Fortune
post Nov 3 2004, 01:38 AM
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As a result of a disagreement in another thread, I sent an inquiry to info(at)shadowrunrpg.com about a couple of matters. I am including my original email, along with the official response for discussion. Both messages remain in their original state, and are not edited in content.

QUOTE
Inquiry: Dear Info-person,

I have a couple of questions in regards to the Shadowrun RPG.

#1. Is it possible to implant the cyberware Eye Light System in natural
eyes, or does it require cyber replacement?

#2. If an Adept gets cybereyes implanted, what happens to any Powers he
may have that pertain to vision. For example, If the Adept has Improved
Sense: Low Light vision and Improved Sense: Thermographic vision, and he
gets a full cyber replacement, does he still retain his Improved Senses?
If not, does he get to reassign any appropriate Power Points?

#3. Related to the above question, if the Adept already has cybereyes, is
he permitted or eligible to acquire Improved Sense: Vision Powers?

Thanks in advance for your help...

                                                Fortune


QUOTE
Response: Hi Fortune,

Good questions. I'll state my opinions on all three. As you know, these aren't answered directly by the books.

#1 "Unless stated otherwise, any eye modification can be purchased as a retinal modification for natural eyes or as a cyber modification to cybereyes." (MM page 44, lower left corner.) You know this.

The following Eye options are described starting on Man and Machine page 13. With each, I'll say whether the Description or Game Effects indicate they go only in CyberEyes.

Datajack -- Description yes -- Game Effects yes
All Eye Lasers -- Description no -- Game Effects yes (stated for all under Basic Eye Laser)
Eyelight -- Description yes -- Game Effects no
Eyelight Brightlight -- Description yes -- Game Effects no
Eyelight Superflash -- Description yes -- Game Effects not directly
Eye Weapons -- Description no -- Game Effects yes

It is my belief that it is an oversight that the Game Effects for the various Eyelight systems do not directly state that they are available only in CyberEyes, and the GM should follow the indication given by the Description and make them only available in CyberEyes in his/her campaign.

Therefore, all the cyberware Eye Light Systems are only available in Cyber Eyes.

I submitted this as a correction for the next printing of Man and Machine on October 1, 2004, but do not know if it will be accepted or will fit on the page.

#2 The Adept loses the 'natural' vision powers he purchased with Power Points. The Power Points are still allocated to those powers. He can choose to lose those Adept Powers the next time he undergoes loss of a Magic Point/Power Point or can replace his cybereyes with natural regrown ones to get his improves senses back.

#3 The Adept with Cyber Eyes can not spend Power Points on Improved Vision until he has his cybereyes replaced with natural eyes.

I hope my opinions on these help you.

Sincerely,
-- ShadowFaq
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mrobviousjosh
post Nov 3 2004, 01:40 AM
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Great. Clears that up for future reference. Just out of curiosity, did it take them like a month give or take to answer your question? It either took me one or two months to get an answer, I can't remember.
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Kanada Ten
post Nov 3 2004, 01:44 AM
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Considering the thread in question was yesterday, I don't think it took a month. There has been much improvement at the info@shadowrun.com from what I can tell. However, as noted, these are just suggestions, not canon answers (yet anyway).
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Ol' Scratch
post Nov 3 2004, 02:07 AM
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Oy.

So an adept purchases Improved Sense (Ultrasound Vision). He then buys cybereyes. According to these house rules, he loses the power even if it's not described as being visual in any way whatsoever. Another adept takes Improved Sense (Protective Covers) and describes it as a second eyelid like Spock had in Star Trek... but those get ripped out the moment he has a new set of eyes installed (but magically reappear if he has cloned replacements). Yet another adept takes Improved Sense (Thermographic) which he describes as being heat sensors near his nose, sorta like a rattlesnake... but poof, a pair of cybereyes remove that one, too.

And why limit it to cybereyes? Another adept purchases Improved Sense (Select Sound Filter), describing it as a meditative focus that allows him to hear only what he wants ot hear. He then has cyberears installed. Baloop, there goes that power. Same exact logic is in play; the adept has his natural ears replaced with cybernetic ones, thus he should be unable to use any natural hearing advantage he has (which isn't an issue under normal circumstances since no metahuman type has any natural augmented hearing ability).

Just more poorly concieved house rules to ignore, doubly so if/when they come out in the FAQ.
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Kanada Ten
post Nov 3 2004, 02:22 AM
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QUOTE
So an adept purchases Improved Sense (Ultrasound Vision). He then buys cybereyes. According to these house rules, he loses the power even if it's not described as being visual in any way whatsoever.

Ultrasonic Vision? Sounds like an oxymoron to an adept. That's a hearing improvement, not sight. The adept only loses it if he replaces the ear drum (and maybe voice box depending on what it's replaced by).

QUOTE
Another adept takes Improved Sense (Protective Covers) and describes it as a second eyelid like Spock had in Star Trek... but those get ripped out the moment he has a new set of eyes installed (but magically reappear if he has cloned replacements).

Protective Covers is not an improved sense in my opinion. More like a Mystic Armor, which isn't affected here.

QUOTE
Yet another adept takes Improved Sense (Thermographic) which he describes as being heat sensors near his nose, sorta like a rattlesnake...

You mean Thermosense which is different than Themorgraphic Vision, and would not be affected by cybereyes.

QUOTE
Another adept purchases Improved Sense (Select Sound Filter), describing it as a meditative focus that allows him to hear only what he wants ot hear. He then has cyberears installed.

Sound filter I think you could convince you're GM of. In fact most of the ear's limitations are inside the mind (the ear drum hears all frequencies but the brain only bothers with a small range), while those of vision are almost all inside the eye itself.
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Ol' Scratch
post Nov 3 2004, 02:55 AM
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QUOTE
Ultrasonic Vision? Sounds like an oxymoron to an adept. That's a hearing improvement, not sight. The adept only loses it if he replaces the ear drum (and maybe voice box depending on what it's replaced by).

Nope, sorry, Ultrasound Vision is clearly an optical sense 'cause, like, they're only found installed in cybereyes. So because of that amazingly narrow perception, that's the only possible way they can be used in the game even through the use of magic. And because of this ill-conceived house rule, installing cybereyes means an adept with that sense loses it.

QUOTE
You mean Thermosense which is different than Themorgraphic Vision, and would not be affected by cybereyes.

No, I most definitely meant Therographic Vision. Therosense Organs (besides being Bioware and not an option by a strict reading of the rules for Improved Sense, and yes, I know why it says Cyberware... I'm being facetious) is something else entirely. The adept is "seeing" heat signatures, just not through the use of his eyes. But that doesn't matter because of this silly black-and-white interpretation of the rules; install some cybereyes and POOF the power is lost.

QUOTE
Sound filter I think you could convince you're GM of. In fact most of the ear's limitations are inside the mind (the ear drum hears all frequencies but the brain only bothers with a small range), while those of vision are almost all inside the eye itself.

This has little to do with convincing your GM. One could convince a GM of just about anything. If these rules were expanded to encompass all of the Improved Senses as it should (there's no reason that cybereyes should be singled out), then there's no way this would get around said rule. You get the ears, you lose your natural hearing abilities. Doesn't matter how they're described or how they function.

Which just shows why this rule is completely bogus.

If it was worded more along the lines of, "any power reliant on the adept's natural eyes is lost," I wouldn't have a problem with it. But that's not the case. You lose any natural visual ability no matter what. No exceptions. It's as poorly conceived as the "you can ignore all armor by making a Called Shot" malarky.
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toturi
post Nov 3 2004, 03:11 AM
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Please try to be a little more consistant, Funk.

If Ultrasound vision must be a Vision mod even for adepts, then Thermographic vision must be a vision mod as well.

If the GM approved the Ultrasound by ruling that Ultrasound need not be technologically based, that somehow the adept's eyes produce and recieve ultrasound, yes, he should lose that Ultrasound vision if he gets cyber eyes.

If he had ruled instead that Ultrasound as a Improved Sense is linked instead to hearing, then no, he does not lose that power.

Same thing for thermographic vision. Except that there is nothing even remotely linking thermographic vision to another sense. Themosense is by itself a seperate sense.
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Ol' Scratch
post Nov 3 2004, 03:18 AM
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QUOTE
If Ultrasound vision must be a Vision mod even for adepts, then Thermographic vision must be a vision mod as well.

I think you missed my point, because that's what I was saying. Or more correctly, that's what this house rule is saying.

Am I really that hard to understand? What I'm saying is that a player should be able to describe his Improved Senses anyway he likes as long as it makes sense for the character concept. What this house rule is saying is that none of that matters; if a character's Improved Sense is a visual mod, it's lost. Doesn't matter how you want to describe it -- [insert any cybereye accessory of your choosing here] is a cybereye modification, thus if you have it, it's considered a natural visual mod and you lose it if you get a cybereye.
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Shev
post Nov 3 2004, 03:26 AM
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IMHO, the adept shouldn't lose the powers anyways. He's paid for those cybereyes with essence, and that makes them subject to all his benefits from magic. If an adept get muscle replacement and improved strength, they stack. Why should eyes be any different?

The power isn't so much in his eyes, but in his mind, at least in my opinion. Rather than just being tethered to the meat eyeballs (and magically restored when he gets new organic ones), those powers are a part of his essence(which pays for the cyber).

From a game balance perspective, I see no problem either. Really, most adepts will want the natural stuff anyways, as they get it at the highest rating and can cram in all they want in their eyes.
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Kagetenshi
post Nov 3 2004, 03:28 AM
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Doc, I'm iffy on that method of description as it makes it plausible that the Adept using the non-visual Thermovision could get around the Blind flaw.

~J
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toturi
post Nov 3 2004, 03:32 AM
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QUOTE (Doctor Funkenstein @ Nov 3 2004, 11:18 AM)
What this house rule is saying is that none of that matters; if a character's Improved Sense is a visual mod, it's lost.  Doesn't matter how you want to describe it -- [insert any cybereye accessory of your choosing here] is a cybereye modification, thus if you have it, it's considered a natural visual mod and you lose it if you get a cybereye.

Which makes perfect sense. If it can be a cyber vision mod and you have it as an adept power and if you get a cyber eye, you lose it. A harsh house rule/opinion but I can see how it can work as long as it is applied consistantly.

Shev: I think a better analogy would be the adept having Improved Strength and a Cyberarm. I do not think the Improved Strength should stack.

1) Cyber arm + Improved Strength = Cyber eye + Improved Sense

2) Muscle Replacement + Improved Sense = Cybernetic vision mod + Improved Sense
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Ol' Scratch
post Nov 3 2004, 03:38 AM
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QUOTE (Kagetenshi)
Doc, I'm iffy on that method of description as it makes it plausible that the Adept using the non-visual Thermovision could get around the Blind flaw.

I mentioned that in the thread that spawned this one. Being blind is being blind; if you have any means of getting around it (short of Astral Perception which is addressed by the flaw), then you're not blind and thus wouldn't qualify for it. At best you could get away with one of the lesser blindness flaws like Color Blind.

I just don't like where this house rule is going. Why should it be limited to cybereyes? If you have the Improved Sense (Improved Touch) power, shouldn't Dermal Sheath or Orthoskin obliterate that ability, too? Shouldn't a Chemical Analyzer & Gas Spectrometer destroy your Improved Sense (Improved Scent and Taste) powers? And why stop with Improved Sense?
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Ol' Scratch
post Nov 3 2004, 03:43 AM
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toturi: That rule would apply to all adept powers that affect your (cyber)limbs. That includes but is not limited to Killing Hands, Nimble Fingers, Improved Ability (any that deal with hand/arm movements in any degree), Smashing Blow, and Traceless Walk (for legs/feet).

Have a cyberarm but describe your Killing Hands as being chaneled through your legs? Doesn't matter. Ditto for all the other powers.
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toturi
post Nov 3 2004, 03:43 AM
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QUOTE (Doctor Funkenstein @ Nov 3 2004, 11:38 AM)
I just don't like where this house rule is going.  Why should it be limited to cybereyes?  If you have the Improved Sense (Improved Touch) power, shouldn't Dermal Sheath or Orthoskin obliterate that ability, too?  Shouldn't a Chemical Analyzer & Gas Spectrometer destroy your Improved Sense (Improved Scent and Taste) powers?  And why stop with Improved Sense?

I would let Improve Touch be lost if the adept had Cyber Skin. Or his Improved Scent/Taste if he had his nose or tongue replaced with cyber nose/tongue.

Funk: Which rule?

Killing Hands is a name descriptor not related to only just the hands, there is no analogous cyberware for it to replace. Basically, I see the ruling as:

If power P can be cyber in cybernetic part C -> If X body part is replaced with a cybernetic part C -> Then power P is lost.
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Ol' Scratch
post Nov 3 2004, 03:53 AM
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QUOTE (toturi)
Shev: I think a better analogy would be the adept having Improved Strength and a Cyberarm. I do not think the Improved Strength should stack.

1) Cyber arm + Improved Strength = Cyber eye + Improved Sense

The rule is a blanket rule. You don't get to choose which ones you want to apply and which ones you don't.

EDIT: Improved Taste, Touch, and Scent are unique to an adept, too. Didn't stop you from outlawing them with non-existant implants you mentioned above.

EDIT 2: In that case, Reflex Recorders, Skillwires (active or not), Chipjacks and Knowsofts (as of SOTA:2064 where Knowledge Skills like Artistic Skills are viable as Improved Abilities), Mnemonic Enhancers, and Enhanced Articulation all destroy Improved Ability.
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toturi
post Nov 3 2004, 03:58 AM
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The above opinion from Shadowfaq is a specific one, there has been no blanketing that I can see. You are extrapolating from the above ruling, which is fine, but extrapolating gets more inaccurate the further you move from the point of extrapolation.

To reply:
Improved Scent is a Improved Sense ability, if Improved Scent is a cyber enhancement in a cyber nose, when adept gets his cyber nose, he loses the Improved Scent.

Also if Improved (Skill) is part of a cyber replacement, then if adept gets cyber replacement, he loses Improved (Skill).
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Ol' Scratch
post Nov 3 2004, 03:58 AM
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I was touching on your extrapolations. My first sentence of the last post is accurate either way. Doesn't matter how you describe the cybernetic vision mod you're mimicking (rules-wise) with Improved Sense. You get a cybereye, you lose it. End o' story.
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toturi
post Nov 3 2004, 04:07 AM
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QUOTE (Doctor Funkenstein)
And why limit it to cybereyes? Another adept purchases Improved Sense (Select Sound Filter), describing it as a meditative focus that allows him to hear only what he wants ot hear. He then has cyberears installed. Baloop, there goes that power. Same exact logic is in play; the adept has his natural ears replaced with cybernetic ones, thus he should be unable to use any natural hearing advantage he has (which isn't an issue under normal circumstances since no metahuman type has any natural augmented hearing ability).

Just more poorly concieved house rules to ignore, doubly so if/when they come out in the FAQ.

My extrapolations were in reply to this. You extrapolated and I obliged you.
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Ol' Scratch
post Nov 3 2004, 04:10 AM
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No, you were replying to Shev in reference to his view on why the Improved Sense powers should still work. In response, you said:

QUOTE (toturi)
Shev: I think a better analogy would be the adept having Improved Strength and a Cyberarm. I do not think the Improved Strength should stack.

And went on from there. It had nothing to do with my comments at all, and I was running off of that one.

But whatever. No one particularly cares what I have to say around here anyway.
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toturi
post Nov 3 2004, 04:14 AM
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And I was running off Shev's extrapolation in that the ruling could be applied to Improved Strength and Muscle Replacement.
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ShadowFaq
post Nov 3 2004, 04:20 AM
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Dr. Funkenstein, please help me with this. My job is difficult enough trying to give advice to people who ask for it without having to contend with people who extend it beyond what was my meaning and then complain bitterly about their extensions. (By the way, this is a standard tactic during political races.)

Consider an Adept power that provides 'natural thermographic vision' to an Adept. I *interpret* this as meaning 1) the eye has cones and rods that react to a lower-frequency of light than is normal for humans and 2) the brain interprets these additional signals. If you install a cybereye with no sensors for the lower-frequency light there is nothing for the brain to 'see'. That's my *interpretation* of how the Adept Power works, and why it is lost if CyberEyes are implanted.

Can you help me? Please write up a better answer to Fortune that I can post on the online FAQ that follows my interpretation.

Thank you.

-- ShadowFaq. Post #1.
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Kagetenshi
post Nov 3 2004, 04:32 AM
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Er, is this legit? Admins, can we get a call?

~J
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Kremlin KOA
post Nov 3 2004, 04:35 AM
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ookay uh what happens if the adept takes the power after he gets the cyber?
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Shev
post Nov 3 2004, 04:55 AM
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QUOTE (Kremlin KOA)
ookay uh what happens if the adept takes the power after he gets the cyber?

Precisely. The thing is, cyber doesn't nullify this sort of thing beyond the power points lost from getting it in the first place.
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RedmondLarry
post Nov 3 2004, 05:01 AM
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If the Adept has CyberEyes, how would taking the Adept Power change what frequencies of light the sensors in the Cybereyes can 'see'? Let's leave out getting the Thermo Vision option for the Cybereyes, lets just argue the Adept Power.
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