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Demon_Bob
Not really sure I want to start a rant thread, but I would like to know that I am not the only person out there with players in his group that make you wonder, "What are they thinking?" and "They can't be serious."

The group had spilt up momentarily during a kidnapping run where all they had to do was wait for the Johnson to call them and give info about where to make the drop.
The characters in question had made an effort to eleviate the kidnapee's fears to make her easier to handle.
The Characters had snuck out of England their home and wound up in Spain.
While one of the players was warding the room the other untied the girl and sat down to watch TV.
The hungry spoiled rich girl shortly thereafter called room service.
After they were unable to understand her she called daddy's secretary to help her translate.
Room service arrived and panic ensued. The two characters in question decide to run, and start making mistakes until the GM finally gives up and ends the session with, "Your caught. The Spanish Police agree not to press charges if you send out the child and give up peacefully." They do so.
Upon arriving back in London, England they are promptly arrested and charged with kidnapping.
One of the players in question starts off by making statements like:
"I spent 5,000 nuyen.gif to have a lawyer on retainer he will get me off."
"They haven't sufficient evidence." despite the trail that they left.
and the capper "I'll just escape and leave England for 15 years because that is how long the statute of limitations probably is."
Catsnightmare
This kinda sounds like they're coming in from a D&D game. Where if you stir up trouble in a town you just get out and don't come back. Townsfolk (or even people of a larger city) are usually too busy with running and/or protecting the place to go out and chase down the adventurers that just caused a ruckus, they just run them out of town. Usually there are no repercussions unless they try to come back to the town.

Remind them that this is Shadowrun, there's extradition, pissed off arms of the law with long reach, lawyers who won't stop at anything for the money and noteriety of prosecuting infamous insidious shadowrunners, not to mention pissed off vengeful corporations who have no qualms about erasing your little SINless hoop.
hyzmarca
Number 3 actually has the good idea. However, it isn't that easy to impliment. HE'd have to lay low in a place that simply doesn't extradite to England. There are some nice places in Africa where they can hide, Asamando for example.

Likewise, they can hang out with some pirates in Southeast Asia. I hear that Sri Lanka is pretty nice. They might even still have a cease fire with the rebels.
Kyoto Kid
If any of the characters were Mages or Shamans and were active in the UK, there is a pretty good chance they would have samples on record with the government. These of course could be used for ritual locate and if need be spell targeting (and I'm sure that the Lord Protector's office recruits the best of the best for any field in which they need expertise).
FiveVenoms
You lost me at "called room service". Now I'm a reasonable fellow, but under no means would I allow a kidnapee to contact an outside source or allow her to walk around unshackled. Egads
! It's almost like these runners have it coming!
blakkie
At that point i was already going "oh, oh" from the line above. Untie before settling in for some channel surfing? WTF? Does this mean she can see their faces too?

But yes, Demon_Bob, i get that feeling sometimes. So do the rest of the players in our group. embarrassed.gif We all have a bad day every now and then when we ride the short bus. wobble.gif It does tend to make for interesting running jokes because this stuff just doesn't get forgotten. One of our group has even taken to putting a star sticker somewhere in the margins of the character sheet for, in her judgement, "special" actions. She also gives out penguins stickers for exceptionally good ideas. "Good idea" typically meaning something that saved another character's life and/or averted someone else getting a star. A little phrase about the event is then written in after the sticker.

I have one D&D character that has, oh, at least 7 or 8 stickers. IIRC only 2 of them are penguins. However you have to keep in mind that sometimes even true brilliance can get a star due to their subjective nature. For example one of the stars has the word "taxman" after it. This was for successfully planning and executing a snookering, over multiple months RL time, of the GM so that my PC now has a royal writ giving him the tax franchise to collect from the rest of the party the [standard for the kingdom] 20% taxing of adventure spoils. smokin.gif
Kyuhan
QUOTE
This was for successfully planning and executing a snookering, over multiple months RL time, of the GM so that my PC now has a royal writ giving him the tax franchise to collect from the rest of the party the [standard for the kingdom] 20% taxing of adventure spoils.
8-bit theatre comes to mind. nyahnyah.gif
blakkie
QUOTE (Kyuhan @ Nov 5 2005, 03:08 AM)
QUOTE
This was for successfully planning and executing a snookering, over multiple months RL time, of the GM so that my PC now has a royal writ giving him the tax franchise to collect from the rest of the party the [standard for the kingdom] 20% taxing of adventure spoils.
8-bit theatre comes to mind. nyahnyah.gif

I don't read it. However judging from this cast list you are likely referring to the Prince of Elfland? Well Gabriel of Had is listed as LE, but he is Cleric dedicated to himself the goal of spreading Justice to everywhere he goes by converting all situations to a Just one. "Justifying" as is his motto and battle cry. Or at least it was his battle cry (that's another "star" story). Instead of an elf he's an Atlantian human which in this campaign world means the same unfathomable ego, expectation of entitlement, and above human average height but without the uber elf powers (regular human 3e stats).

I checked the character sheet: 2 Penguins, 9 Stars, and cat in a spacesuit (apparently ran out of star stickers that day cyber.gif ).

Oh, here's another star 'awarded' for pure genius ohplease.gif :

Early on the party encountered a very large and decidedly unfriendly wolf (maybe even Dire, not sure). That can be dangerous in low level 3e because of the automatic Trip attempts. Fortunately the Druid managed to charm it with a spell before melee actually started.

Unfortunately the spell only works for a short duration. The Druid was dead set against harming the "puppy", but we had just a few minutes before the spell broke and the damn thing gets back to ripping us all new orifices. So in stunning fashion, and i mean i REALLY sold this one, i said something like "Well maybe those tracks i saw over there by that [some local feature] might give us an idea about how to resolve this. Not sure what they are though." This knowing full well that the only one with any tracking skill is the Druid. The Druid/player (and everyone else at the table) bit hard. A quick whisper and *BAM* a PA-mace-to-the-skull, SA-dagger-to-the-gut combo from me and the Rogue resolved the situation.

For using this, er, diplomacy to avert a dangerous impasse in a bloodless [to the party] manner under acute time pressure? A star with the text "The guy that makes Heather cry." Ok, ok. So after the immediate, absolute aghast shock left her face she really did tear up a bit, like i had just cancelled Christmas...forever. frown.gif She had only been with the group (first time playing an RPG) a very short time, and she was playing a Druid because it was a playing herself thing. And she really likes dogs. So i did feel a bit shitty about making this first assault on the player's naivety so brutal.

P.S. But of course Gabriel of Had sure didn't because sometimes stuff just needs to get done. indifferent.gif
Siege
Why are shadowrunners operating in a country where they can't speak the languange?

If it's just a shoot-n-scoot, that's one thing.

Carrying out an effective kidnapping and having to interact with locals and not be able to speak the language?

Yikes.

-Siege
Dog
That's it. We need a support group.

Demon Bob, you are not alone. frown.gif I'll save you the headache of reiterating all the stupid player stories that I've already posted. Suffice to say this: the guy who reads up on, and thinks about, the game the most usually ends up the GM. You have to presume the players are less informed and less focussed than yourself.
Sad but usually true.
FrostyNSO
QUOTE (Siege)
Why are shadowrunners operating in a country where they can't speak the languange?

Maybe they're doing landscaping?
Siege
QUOTE (FrostyNSO)
QUOTE (Siege @ Nov 5 2005, 01:43 PM)
Why are shadowrunners operating in a country where they can't speak the languange?

Maybe they're doing landscaping?

Heh.

And for a second, I thought I'd made a major typo in my post. grinbig.gif

And I will point out that landscaper laborers, generally speaking, aren't expected to be able to bluff their way past the locals.

Even if you were being funny. nyahnyah.gif

-Siege
FrostyNSO
Actually I was considering going back and deleting it.
Ed Simons
I had a player who wanted to his character have a Day Job in landscaping. He never did explain why a tiger shapeshifter would want a job at all, let alone one working in landscaping. Nor why anyone would hire a homeless person (Street Lifestyle), with no skill, and no legal ID (he didn't even have a fake SIN) to be their regular landscaper.

In this case it was the players delusion that the PC made sense. Which is one of several reasons I didn't let it in the game.
Teulisch
considering how easy it is to get linguasofts, and how common a chipjack or knowsoft link is, there is no excuse for not having someone know the language. If you didt get the linguasoft when you were getting the transportation there, you made a big mistake.

Siege
The day job "flaw" was way too useful - and working as a landscaper does open interesting possibilities to a shadowrunner.

The other questions, however, do kinda need some pressing answers.

Beware the pizza delivering shadowrunner! grinbig.gif

-Siege
Valentinew
I always thought the day job flaw ought to pertain to something that could cause trouble for you as a runner...like you were a wageslave for Renraku during the day, so if you went on a run against your boss, you better be VERY careful......
hyzmarca
QUOTE (Ed Simons)
I had a player who wanted to his character have a Day Job in landscaping. He never did explain why a tiger shapeshifter would want a job at all, let alone one working in landscaping. Nor why anyone would hire a homeless person (Street Lifestyle), with no skill, and no legal ID (he didn't even have a fake SIN) to be their regular landscaper.

In this case it was the players delusion that the PC made sense. Which is one of several reasons I didn't let it in the game.

Carnivores make the best gardeners and landscapers, according to 3001. However, they use geneticly engineered velociraptors, not magical tigers But the same principal of letting a near perfect killing machine do your gardening holds. They don't eat the plants. Now a tiger shifter having a job as a rancher or a shepheard, that is asking for disaster.

As for why someone would hire a SINless to do their landscaping, they'll work for less. If you offer a SINer less than minimum wage for a job he'll refuse and possibly report you to whatever government agency may have jurisdiction over such matters. If you offer a SINless person less than minimum wage, he'll be all over that offer like a horny Petro Hougun on Marilyn Monroe's reanimated corpse. He won't be hired by any AA, but smaller firms who need to pinch pennies without the benefits of extraterritoriality just might give the tiger the benefit of the doubt. If I were GMing him I'd require a write up of his employer and the rescources to make him a level 1 contact.
PBTHHHHT
Aye. Even today there's a day laborers that I see hanging out at gas stations and such, many of them are likely to be illegal aliens who will do anything for short time work. And I'm sure you've heard of new stories of migrant farm hands, many of whom are in the country illegally. Contractors will hire them since they don't have to pay minimum wage nor worry about any other employee benefits/insurance for them.
These smaller firms get to cut more for themselves at the bottom line. I can see many of these corporations who hire subcontractors, the subcontractors might have a few Sinless working on stuff (especially in the grunt labor area in the non-restricted area), or for places where they don't care as much about employee safety.
Ed Simons
I perfectly understand that people have hired poor illegal immigrants for things like landscaping. This isn't the same thing.

First, the tiger wasn't just poor, it had spent absolutely no money on lifestyle. How many people hire someone who lives in a cardboard box and bathes only when it rains to do their landscaping?

Second, the tiger had absolutely no skill at landscaping. At least the illegal alien would know what a lawnmower was, even if they'd never used it. Can you imagine what kind of landscaping that untrained tiger shifter would do? They'd be lucky to last a full day at the job.

Also, without any SIN, you'd have to pay the shifter in certified cred. Why would any employer go through that hassle? It's easier to find a poor person with some sort of SIN and just lie about the number of hours the employee worked, to hide the fact you haven't paid them the legal minimum wage. (Assuming there is any legal minimum wage in Shadowrun.)

The big problem, is that after I flat out told the player several times that he needed to write up reasons why the shifter would want any job, but especially this kind of job, and why someone else would want to hire him for it. He never even tried.
Siege
Good gawd, a squatter?

And as a regular landscaper, not just a nameless hired grunt? Sheesh.

Although, the shifter might have had some luck as a day laborer - up until he stopped for lunch.

-Siege
PBTHHHHT
Hmmm... if I was the contractor, I'd keep hiring the guy. I'd just not let him have his lunch break till after the shift is over and he can eat the other laborer, thereby not having to pay for that guy. lol. Just kidding.
Siege
Actually, that's a very shadowrunner way of looking at it. grinbig.gif

-Siege
toturi
QUOTE (Ed Simons)
The big problem, is that after I flat out told the player several times that he needed to write up reasons why the shifter would want any job, but especially this kind of job, and why someone else would want to hire him for it. He never even tried.

If you are not telling other players to write up the reasons for their PC's flaws, then I see no reason why he should. It just appears that you are simply giving him a hard time. Game mechanically, he can play such a character. There are no rules except by GM fiat that says a PC must have a coherent background story for the flaws that he had taken. That he even told you that the Day Job was landscaping was already quite good.
Siege
Would you allow a PC to take "Day Job" as a flaw without defining any of the particulars?

-Siege
Snow_Fox
So the spoiled girl gets on the phone to roomservice....someone get me a LARGE bottle of Asprin.

Of course if she's too dim to dial 911 asap maybe the characters deserved her.
Ed Simons
QUOTE (toturi)
QUOTE (Ed Simons @ Nov 7 2005, 07:19 AM)
The big problem, is that after I flat out told the player several times that he needed to write up reasons why the shifter would want any job, but especially this kind of job, and why someone else would want to hire him for it.  He never even tried.

If you are not telling other players to write up the reasons for their PC's flaws, then I see no reason why he should.


Why are you assuming I didnít?

In fact, the other players all provided explanations about their characters without my asking. Almost every other player made minor changes to those Flaws based on my input as GM. The exception didnít take any Flaws.

QUOTE (toturi)
It just appears that you are simply giving him a hard time.


Iím fairly sure he thought that.

Then again, he probably thought I was giving him a hard time when his Strength 4, Body 5, Unarmed Combat 4 elf got severely wounded after he chose to go solo against an identical group to the one that had just taken the Strength 7, Body 8, Unarmed Combat 10 bear shapeshifter down to one Overflow box away from dead.

QUOTE (toturi)
Game mechanically, he can play such a character. There are no rules except by GM fiat that says a PC must have a coherent background story for the flaws that he had taken.


Thereís more to a character than just it matching up mechanically. Though he failed at that, too, being several points over and having far more Flaws than recommended.

After all, thereís nothing in the game mechanics that says a PC canít take Sea Madness, Allergy: Being Out of Sight of Land for 24 Hours, and Phobia: Being Out of Sight of Land for 24 Hours. Thereís nothing in the game mechanics that says a PC canít take Sea Legs and Sea Madness, or High Pain Tolerance and Low Pain Tolerance, or several other contradictory combos of Edges and Flaws.

The world of Shadowrun is a shared world between players and GM. Like all worlds of fiction, it requires a certain suspension of disbelief and itís the responsibility of both players and GM to avoid things that violate that.

If I as GM had a dozen streetsams jump out of a Chrysler-Nissan Jackrabbit and attack the PCs, Iíd be violating that suspension of disbelief. When a player creates a character that doesnít make sense, that also violates suspension of disbelief.

And it was more than what I said. The character was a physical magician Wyrm Shaman, who Ďshuns contact with othersí, so why was he holding down a job at all? And Wyrm Shamans have to sleep 70 hours a week. Between that and the Day Job, whenís he going to have time to be a runner? Why was the tiger better with knives and staves than unarmed combat? Why would the tigerís unarmed combat skill be specialized in kicking? I could go on.

QUOTE (toturi)
That he even told you that the Day Job was landscaping was already quite good.


Thatís a different definition of Ďquite goodí than Iíd use. If he hadnít been a shapeshifter, Iíd have used the word Ďadequateí.
Valentinew
QUOTE (Demon_Bob)
"I spent 5,000 nuyen.gif to have a lawyer on retainer he will get me off."
"They haven't sufficient evidence." despite the trail that they left.
and the capper "I'll just escape and leave England for 15 years because that is how long the statute of limitations probably is."

I think you ought to run with this. Make them play it out. The law wins & they end up in jail. Or, maybe, if they connected with the girl enough, she lies to get them off. Have they even considered the consequences yet of failing the Johnson? Maybe the rest of the team has to break them out of jail. If they run, they can expect to be on the run for likely the rest if their lives. You're the GM, you set the statute of limitatons for wherever & whatever world/city you're running.

We often consider our GM's to be evil bastards, but that's mostly 'cause if we screw up as badly as your two did, our GM's get this evil grin/look of unholy glee about them, and always make us pay for being so completely stupid.

Actually, I've been in games where the other players killed a player for making a series of really stupid decisions. His next character was much more cooperative....
Valentinew
QUOTE (Ed Simons @ Nov 6 2005, 11:24 PM)
Then again, he probably thought I was giving him a hard time when his Strength 4, Body 5, Unarmed Combat 4 elf got severely wounded after he chose to go solo against an identical group to the one that had just taken the Strength 7, Body 8, Unarmed Combat 10 bear shapeshifter down to one Overflow box away from dead.

Sounds like a munchkin to me. The problem may be in that he thinks he's gotten away with this before & sees no reason that he shouldn't get away with it now.

Shadowrun's pretty good about saying that the GM has to approve characters. The issue now is, can you make it stick? How are the other players reacting to this guy's attitude? Will they support you? Use a little peer pressure if you need the help.
Snow_Fox
QUOTE (Demon_Bob @ Nov 4 2005, 04:34 PM)
"I spent 5,000 nuyen.gif† to have a lawyer on retainer he will get me off."
That assumes they won't have a better team on line.
QUOTE

"They haven't sufficient evidence."† despite the trail that they left.
including an eye witness.
QUOTE

and the capper "I'll just escape and leave England for 15 years because that is how long the statute of limitations probably is."

Now I ike the idea on making them go with that. Make them try to break out and escape and island nation with a highly organized police force. the role playing could be fun.
Ed Simons
QUOTE (Valentinew)
QUOTE (Ed Simons @ Nov 6 2005, 11:24 PM)
Then again, he probably thought I was giving him a hard time when his Strength 4, Body 5, Unarmed Combat 4 elf got severely wounded after he chose to go solo against an identical group to the one that had just taken the Strength 7, Body 8, Unarmed Combat 10 bear shapeshifter down to one Overflow box away from dead.

Sounds like a munchkin to me.


No, he isnít skilled enough in character creation to be a munchkin.

Another player built the bear adept shapeshifter and he kicks serious butt in unarmed combat. Captain Clueless wanted to build a tiger shapeshifter, who in addition to making no sense, was just as good at unarmed combat as his elf listed in the example quote.

Somehow, he thinks Unarmed Combat 4 makes you Bruce Lee.

QUOTE (Valentinew)
The problem may be in that he thinks he's gotten away with this before & sees no reason that he shouldn't get away with it now.


I think he may have gotten away with the twinkery before I played Shadowrun with him. He hasnít with my existing group. So far his characters were:

A greenskinned elf with horns, fangs, and a tail. Had a 4 point Hunter - Ares Arms Black Ops and a Dark Secret Ė former Ares Arms Black Ops who knows to much. Never made any attempt to change his appearance or go to ground when IDíd by someone from Ares. After which he rather forcibly retired.

A rigger who had a Yamaha Rapier with about 20 CF of mods to it. That vanished in a puff of logic when we realized how grossly illegal it was. Though given the chance to respend the money and buy something else, he didnít. Said rigger also had a van with morphing plates, color-changing paint, and a variable transponder. Too bad it didnít have sensors, scanners, a drone rack, or rigging gear. It vanished in a burst of machinegun fire from a rotodrone. Then there was the ubertruck he wanted, a monstrous cross between the truck in Universal Soldier and the truck in Bubblegum Crisis. Of course, he never got around to actually designing it, apparently expecting the GM to do it for him.

That character survived, largely because he owned a junkyard in the Barrens and the rest of the players found his contracts useful. In fact, other PCs routinely got more out of his contacts because they treated them better.

He also designed a PC for his girlfriend, a newbie gamer. When he wasnít there, someone helping the noob noticed the PC had Self Defense Pacifist as a Flaw. The player was appalled as that clearly didnít fit a former combat biker and sniper and certainly wasnít what sheíd told her boyfriend. The GM took the character sheet home and fixed it for the newbie Ė she ended up with higher stats, skills, and Essence and without Flaws that contradicted the character concept.

Then we had some turnover and I took over as GM. Captain Cluelessí girlfriend had me create her new character.

He created a elven cybercatgirl who tried to go their own way and kept walking into trouble. (Iíd told him Distinctive Looks, Day Job, and Hunted was a bad combo.) Tried to play Bruce Lee with Unarmed Combat of 4. Tried to hack a casino with Computer of 4 and no cyberdeck. Last seen lightly stunned, seriously injured, subject to a spiritís Confusion power, and alone; charging after a bunch human supremacists into their home territory. They had a truck, he was on foot. They had assault rifles, he had a pistol.

After which he wanted to play the Wyrm shaman physical magician knife thrower tiger shapeshifter landscaper.

QUOTE (Valentinew)
Shadowrun's pretty good about saying that the GM has to approve characters.  The issue now is, can you make it stick?  How are the other players reacting to this guy's attitude?  Will they support you?  Use a little peer pressure if you need the help.


Thanks for the advice. In this case, he emailed me saying that if he couldnít play the character he wanted, he didnít want to play. I emailed him back, saying I supported his position and wishing him luck with whatever other group he decided to play with.

Last I heard he tried to bring a half-Shade, half-Infernal into a party with two half-Celestials and a Paladin. That group is thinking of buying him D&D for Dummies for Christmas.
Siege
QUOTE

A greenskinned elf with horns, fangs, and a tail. Had a 4 point Hunter - Ares Arms Black Ops and a Dark Secret Ė former Ares Arms Black Ops who knows to much. Never made any attempt to change his appearance or go to ground when IDíd by someone from Ares. After which he rather forcibly retired.


Bloody hell...just put a bullet in your own head and save Ares the trouble.

-Siege
SL James
That's the worst case of ADD in a gamer I've ever seen.
Enigma
The worst I've had was a ninja without the stealth skill, because they'd spent all the points on unarmed, armed (this was SR2) guns, demolitions and getting high stats. Naturally, I assumed it was a mistake and pointed it out to the player. They harrangued me for half an hour about how stealth was not an essential skill for a ninja (and I mean a proper born-in-Japan secret-ninja-clan ninja, not someone who likes throwing stars and sounding cool), despite me pointing out that a ninja is a practitioner of ninjitsu, which literally means "the way of stealth".

I don't have much to offer in relation to stupid player deaths, apart from one incident. Back in the day before maturity caught up with most of my players and me, they played characters who would generally get to the point of being so ruthlessly hunted by the cops, organised crime, families of their victims, the gummint, the Tax Department and the League of Women Voters that they had to retire the character after about three games.

After one particularly bad incident with them being dumped in the Barrens naked and ending up trying to rule street bums like kings and viciously assaulting then mangling the corpse of about fifty Ancients, it became obvious that it was time for another 'wrath of God' type attack to teach them what's what.

The players know this is coming, of course. I think this was about 1am when they came up with "I know, let's find a backwoods town and defend it." Each of them got out Fields of Fire (again, SR2) and went through listing everything they would buy and take with them. It was a list of almost everything there is to buy in Fields of Fire, with a truck being needed just to carry the ammo and the explosives. They spoke to contacts, bought up big, stole some trucks and picked the town by saying "we drive until there's a good down then we kick everyone out."

They set up, with sniper positions, ammo dumps, armour, food, water and so on. Each of them has a rocket of fifteen with them, and they've taken strategic positions. They plan backup positions, fields of fire, medical aid if any of them are hit, escape routes, vehicles, reloading if they're wounded, the works. The players are nearly wetting themselves with how cool this plan is, and how cinematic and cool the combat is going to be.

I, being a total b*stard, had no interest in them getting a cinematic cool gunfight out of basically screwing up my carefully prepared game by being immature idiots.

I describe how they see an armada of black sedans and choppers approaching the town, seeing cars in almost all directions. I describe how the corporate types out there (Ares being the most p*ssed off of the corporations gunning for the players) set up a permiter very wide, almost a kilometer back in all directions. The players feed belts into their SMGs and take some shots with their Barrets which miss.

Amongst all the choppers and so on they see a large cargo-type plane flying overhead. Thinking they're smart, they shoot at it with SAMs and whatever is available, because they think it's dropping paratroopers. I think to myself why waste the lives of some perfectly good paratroopers and it drops a massive FAE bomb.

The bomb blows most of the very small town (basically houses around a single street) into tiny pieces with the players taking a whole lot of the blast. Some of them die, some live after their ammo stockpile goes up as well, but are in no state to do anything at all about the Guardian drones that come into the crater/rubble and spend a couple of minutes pumping them full of bullets. Total planning time for the players was about three or four hours. Total playing time was about ninety seconds.
Critias
QUOTE (Ed Simons)
Somehow, he thinks Unarmed Combat 4 makes you Bruce Lee...Tried to play Bruce Lee with Unarmed Combat of 4. Tried to hack a casino with Computer of 4 and no cyberdeck.

To be honest, that little snippet right there you can probably blame on the SR books themselves. Much like WoD, they get all excited the higher and higher a skill or attribute or whatever goes, and their background/descriptors for each level are all fucking crazy out of wack with reality.

According to the main book, a 4 is actually reall good at something. We all know that's insane -- my main character doesn't go out of his way to get into brawls, and he's got Wildcat at 10 or so, with Carromelleg as a backup around 8 -- and that there's always someone better than you at Unarmed... but if you read the book descriptors, you could easily think a character with 4's across the board is some kind of badass.

Which isn't me saying your player is smart, or deserves to be wasting oxygen, or anything like that. Just point out the book itself might be partially to blame for his confusion (along with genetics, and lead paint).
nick012000
This thread made my day.
Sandoval Smith
I think that this one is applicable to the GM, although my memories of it all are a little hazy. IIRC, the team had to go to some slightly out of the way place in Southern France. One of the characters spoke French. The ones with datajacks got chips. We go to France, get some vehicles, and spend a couple days driving south.

We get to the town where we're supposed to meet this shady guy, and since it's late, the runners go into a local resturant to get something to eat. We sit down, we look at the menus. The waitress comes up and starts talking in a language we don't understand.

Turns out, we were in a region with a high Basque population. Everyone in town spoke only Basque, and we hadn't noticed, not even when we were somehow 'reading' the menus. No one spoke English. No one even spoke French. The waitress got pissed when someone tried pantomiming with a credstick, thinking he was treating her like a prosititute. EVERYTHING we did just pissed off the locals more and more ('cause apprently we always did just the right thing to come off as purposefully insulting, instead of completly confused). Someone runs off to get our guy, and he shows up with a couple of tough buddies. Instead of going, 'hey, these guys are foreigners here to see me,' he gets pissed off too. We ended up bolting from town in a running gun fight, in which the locals wait on the sidelines, for the perfect oppurtunity to throw themselves in front of bullets.

At the end, when we demanded from the GM what was going on, he said he wanted to give us an NPC with a good strong reason to hate our runners.

... dead.gif
Oracle
How did you manage to drive south through France a couple of days? Where did you start? What kind of vehicle did you use? Bikes? o_O
Critias
I...always thought most Basques still spoke French, too. I dunno, could be wrong, I guess.
toturi
QUOTE (Ed Simons @ Nov 7 2005, 01:24 PM)
Why are you assuming I didnít?

In fact, the other players all provided explanations about their characters without my asking.  Almost every other player made minor changes to those Flaws based on my input as GM.  The exception didnít take any Flaws.

Thereís more to a character than just it matching up mechanically.  Though he failed at that, too, being several points over and having far more Flaws than recommended.

After all, thereís nothing in the game mechanics that says a PC canít take Sea Madness, Allergy: Being Out of Sight of Land for 24 Hours, and Phobia: Being Out of Sight of Land for 24 Hours.  Thereís nothing in the game mechanics that says a PC canít take Sea Legs and Sea Madness, or High Pain Tolerance and Low Pain Tolerance, or several other contradictory combos of Edges and Flaws.

The world of Shadowrun is a shared world between players and GM.  Like all worlds of fiction, it requires a certain suspension of disbelief and itís the responsibility of both players and GM to avoid things that violate that.

If I as GM had a dozen streetsams jump out of a Chrysler-Nissan Jackrabbit and attack the PCs, Iíd be violating that suspension of disbelief.  When a player creates a character that doesnít make sense, that also violates suspension of disbelief.

And it was more than what I said.  The character was a physical magician Wyrm Shaman, who Ďshuns contact with othersí, so why was he holding down a job at all?  And Wyrm Shamans have to sleep 70 hours a week.  Between that and the Day Job, whenís he going to have time to be a runner?  Why was the tiger better with knives and staves than unarmed combat?  Why would the tigerís unarmed combat skill be specialized in kicking?  I could go on.

I am not assuming that you did not ask for backgrounds, but I am saying that if you did not. And if you did not, even if all the rest did write their backgrounds, then I do not think you should expect the player to do so.

There is no rule that a character must make sense in a storysense. So as long as the PC matches up with the rules, he is legal and should be good to go to play in any game (apart from the subjective "GM approval" this is the canon baseline, any additional requirement to the basic chargen rules is a house rule).

There is nothing wrong with taking contradictory Flaws. In fact, it is perfectly legal, rules wise. Funny thing about suspension of disbelief... what is believable about dragons flying about, the USA breaking up... I could go on, but my point is that suspension of disbelief is another area where things are subjective.

And all those things about the wyrm shaman? Remember when you were a kid and you ask all those whys? Now GM is the kid and the adult is the player. Some people's suspension of belief enables them to accept it at face value and look askance when the GM question them why. Physics in SR work differently from RL(as many veteran SR gamers will tell you), so why can't you accept that people/the world/the SR universe behaves differently and somehow allows these PCs to exist (as written in the rules, without house ruling)? Hence, my answer to your myriad whys: just because.
Sandoval Smith
QUOTE (Critias)
I...always thought most Basques still spoke French, too. I dunno, could be wrong, I guess.

They do, that was part of the problem with, 'and then suddenly, you can communicate with NO ONE!' The GM wanted a language barrier to exist, and by Dunkie there was going to be a language barrier there. Even if it made as little sense as a lazy tiger shaman with no gardering skills taking a day job as a landscaper.

I didn't think to question how long it took to drive through France. We had plenty of time to get there, so I guess it's safe to say we paused for wine, cheese, and sightseeing. However, somehow, we did not notice (even while reading the menu) that the French language had completly ceased to exist.

And Toturi, that shifter might've been rules legal, but the way most of the people around here seem to play, Flaws don't exist just for you to get free points(although it's completly rules legal to do it that way). The job might even have an impact on the game. Not to mention the fact that if they're a worm shamen, with all that time sleeping, and then working (assuming, as it sounded, they had the 40 hour flaw), they are left with just eight hours a day with which to do anything else.
Ed Simons
QUOTE (toturi)
I am not assuming that you did not ask for backgrounds, but I am saying that if you did not. And if you did not, even if all the rest did write their backgrounds, then I do not think you should expect the player to do so.


Your opinion is noted. I still donít agree with it.

QUOTE (toturi)
There is no rule that a character must make sense in a storysense.


None but the rule of common sense. And courtesy to the other players and GM.

QUOTE (toturi)
So as long as the PC matches up with the rules,


Which as I already said, he didnít. biggrin.gif

QUOTE (toturi)
he is legal and should be good to go to play in any game (apart from the subjective "GM approval" this is the canon baseline, any additional requirement to the basic chargen rules is a house rule).


As I already pointed out he failed the GM approval step. And I gave some of the reasons why. Were you having trouble following my explanation?

And thereís no problem with having house rules. After all, SR3 wasnít graven on stone tablets and brought down from the mountain.

QUOTE (toturi)
There is nothing wrong with taking contradictory Flaws.


rotfl.gif

QUOTE (toturi)
In fact, it is perfectly legal, rules wise.


Which doesnít stop if from being perfectly stupid. Face, it thereís more to the game than the rules.

Your example of the child asking questions, in addition to being patronizing, has nothing to do with the actual situation. Thatís someone trying to describe something they didnít make and is very complex to someone with a very limited understanding of how the world works. As opposed to the player, who made the PC and should understand all the whys. If they canít answer simple questions about things donít make sense about the PC, that isnít the GMís fault.

Sure thereís suspension of disbelief in SR as in any work of fiction, but the key is consistency. There are dragons in SR, which requires a certain suspension of disbelief. But most players would find that shattered if the GM described the dragon suddenly turned into a soap bubble. And the GM saying Ďjust becauseí or Ďitís all fantasy anywayí wouldnít be an acceptable answer to any player over the age of about six.

The same is true for the player. If you put the 20 questions (or any other reasonable questions) in front of them and they canít provide an answer, thatís the playerís problem. And saying Ďjust becauseí or pointing out the PC didnít break any rules in creation isnít going to cut it.

Some people are content playing stats on paper. For them, the only requirement is that the PC obey the character creation rules. Some of us like games with characters.

I doubt youíd like the game I run. Iím certain I wouldnít like the game you run. But thatís okay, so long as your players enjoy it.
toturi
QUOTE (Ed Simons)
In this case it was the players delusion that the PC made sense.

My point was that it might not have been the player's delusion that the PC made sense. If the rules were not broken(according to you, they were, but for the sake of argument, I'm assuming they weren't), then it was a perfectly sensible PC.

QUOTE
After all, SR3 wasnít graven on stone tablets and brought down from the mountain.

See my sig.

QUOTE
Some people are content playing stats on paper. For them, the only requirement is that the PC obey the character creation rules. Some of us like games with characters.

Characters are stats on paper, in addition to the canon SRComp 20 Questions.
Lucifer
QUOTE (Critias)
QUOTE (Ed Simons @ Nov 7 2005, 10:07 PM)
Somehow, he thinks Unarmed Combat 4 makes you Bruce Lee...Tried to play Bruce Lee with Unarmed Combat of 4. Tried to hack a casino with Computer of 4 and no cyberdeck.

To be honest, that little snippet right there you can probably blame on the SR books themselves. Much like WoD, they get all excited the higher and higher a skill or attribute or whatever goes, and their background/descriptors for each level are all fucking crazy out of wack with reality.

According to the main book, a 4 is actually reall good at something. We all know that's insane -- my main character doesn't go out of his way to get into brawls, and he's got Wildcat at 10 or so, with Carromelleg as a backup around 8 -- and that there's always someone better than you at Unarmed... but if you read the book descriptors, you could easily think a character with 4's across the board is some kind of badass.

Which isn't me saying your player is smart, or deserves to be wasting oxygen, or anything like that. Just point out the book itself might be partially to blame for his confusion (along with genetics, and lead paint).

What in the world are you talking about? Right in SR3 it defines skill levels and their comparative meanings in a normal campaign. A skill of 4 is defined as being Well-rounded, while a skill of 5 is Professional or Educated. There is no way anyone who can read would mistakenly think that a skill rating of 4 makes you some kind of legendary master.

And for the record, 8+ is World Class/Genius level. The only people who should even think about throwing down with your Wildcat 10 character in a fair fight are physical adepts specialized in Unarmed Combat. There may be people who have a higher natural skill level than your character - as in, maybe and probably no more than five in the entire freaking world - but the likelihood of him meeting them under normal circumstances is laughable.

You talked about World of Darkness in your post, and maybe that's what you're thinking about as well. No one ever said that a score of 4 was excellent in Shadowrun, or that a score of 10 wasn't absolutely extraordinary, least of all the actual books.
Ed Simons
QUOTE (toturi)
QUOTE (Ed Simons @ Nov 6 2005, 11:16 PM)
In this case it was the players delusion that the PC made sense.

My point was that it might not have been the player's delusion that the PC made sense. If the rules were not broken(according to you, they were, but for the sake of argument, I'm assuming they weren't), then it was a perfectly sensible PC.


Whether or not the character was legal by the game system and whether or not the character made sense are completely separate issues. Havenít you understood a thing Iím saying?

QUOTE (toturi)
QUOTE
After all, SR3 wasnít graven on stone tablets and brought down from the mountain.

See my sig.


So you believe the creators of SR3 made no mistakes? And that the GMís job consists solely of mindlessly following the rules as written?

QUOTE (toturi)
QUOTE
Some people are content playing stats on paper. For them, the only requirement is that the PC obey the character creation rules. Some of us like games with characters.

Characters are stats on paper, in addition to the canon SRComp 20 Questions.


This confirms it. You havenít understood a thing Iím saying.
hyzmarca
The shifter landscaper could make sense with some minor modifications. 1 or 2 points in the landscaping knowledge skill, the owner of a small landscaping company as a level 1 contact, and perhaps a more industrious totem.

Ed Simons
QUOTE (Enigma)
The worst I've had was a ninja without the stealth skill, because they'd spent all the points on unarmed, armed (this was SR2) guns, demolitions and getting high stats.

Ouch.

Since he had played Shadowrun before, the greenskinned elf with the horns, fangs, and tail did have the the Stealth skill.

He had Stealth of 1. eek.gif

We found this out after he insisted on taking point. ohplease.gif

After which he got shot up and we sent someone else to scout ahead.

He tried to follow to back up the scout, trusting to his Stealth of 1 since it had worked so well before he took the Moderate wound. eek.gif
toturi
QUOTE (Ed Simons)
Whether or not the character was legal by the game system and whether or not the character made sense are completely separate issues. Havenít you understood a thing Iím saying?

So you believe the creators of SR3 made no mistakes? And that the GMís job consists solely of mindlessly following the rules as written?

This confirms it. You havenít understood a thing Iím saying.

1) Yes, I understand. But for any meaningful discussion other than expression of opinion, I think you are wrong.

2) No. Yes.

3) I understand prefectly well. But I choose to disagree and I'm using the printed rules to show you why.
Ed Simons
QUOTE (hyzmarca)
The shifter landscaper could make sense with some minor modifications. 1 or 2 points in the landscaping knowledge skill, the owner of a small landscaping company as a level 1 contact, and perhaps a more industrious totem.

Exactly. Any one of these would be a major step in making the characcter credible.
mmu1
QUOTE (Critias @ Nov 8 2005, 04:19 AM)
To be honest, that little snippet right there you can probably blame on the SR books themselves.  Much like WoD, they get all excited the higher and higher a skill or attribute or whatever goes, and their background/descriptors for each level are all fucking crazy out of wack with reality. 

According to the main book, a 4 is actually reall good at something.  We all know that's insane -- my main character doesn't go out of his way to get into brawls, and he's got Wildcat at 10 or so, with Carromelleg as a backup around 8 -- and that there's always someone better than you at Unarmed...  but if you read the book descriptors, you could easily think a character with 4's across the board is some kind of badass.

Which isn't me saying your player is smart, or deserves to be wasting oxygen, or anything like that.  Just point out the book itself might be partially to blame for his confusion (along with genetics, and lead paint).

Having a skill of 4 equated to being very good at something makes a lot more sense to me than a character with 10 in Wildcat being seriously concerned with meeting a non-adept better than he is.

In all the games I've played in so far, the SR3 skill descriptions (aside from things like world-class, I think 8 might be a bit low for that, but it's not a bad starting point) have actually held up very well - unlike the ones in WoD games, which really are meaningless.
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