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Apathy
Ever since SR4 came out I've been reading threads about how powerful magic is. It seems like there are a lot of critters out there that can only be hurt by magic, but there's pretty much nothing out there that can resist the mage by gets sliced and diced by the samurai.
  • Regenerating creatures bounce right back from physical attacks, but go down vs spell attacks like a blonde on prom night.
  • High force spirits are basically immune to firearms, but just as vulnerable to spells as anyone else.
My problem with this is that if a high force spirit shows up the sammy's got to just sit on his hands and wait for the mage to fix it.

Has anybody thought about making the following changes in their games?
  • Regeneration works against magic damage, but at only half effectiveness (i.e. need two successes for every box healed)
  • Bring back Will+Charisma attacks to bypass Spirit Immunity to Normal Weapons
Is this a good idea, or a bad idea? Has anybody tried it?
fistandantilus4.0
With a Sam, you can always try the whole 'escalated response'. Assault Rifle didn't work? Time to pull out the Assault CANNON. But in the end, let's remember that they are spirits, they aren't people. There is no reason that you should be able to shoot a spirit/ghost. So be happy with what you get, life isn't always fair.

I do personally like the contest of Will though.Not sure how viable it is though, since attributes are harder to get. What would you roll, Will+cha for the attack, Will/2 (like with melee, but will) for the damage?
nick012000
QUOTE (fistandantilus3.0)
With a Sam, you can always try the whole 'escalated response'. Assault Rifle didn't work? Time to pull out the Assault CANNON. But in the end, let's remember that they are spirits, they aren't people. There is no reason that you should be able to shoot a spirit/ghost. So be happy with what you get, life isn't always fair.

I do personally like the contest of Will though.Not sure how viable it is though, since attributes are harder to get. What would you roll, Will+cha for the attack, Will/2 (like with melee, but will) for the damage?

I would say Logic+Will, with Cha/2 damage.

I say logic because it's the stat for astral Agility, and Cha because it's Astral Str.
fistandantilus4.0
good call, sounds like good reasoning. Does the astral combat skill required being awakened? I would assume that it would, but I just thought I'd check, since drugs like deepweed and astral shallows can make mundaes astrally percieve, and therefore capable of practicing/learning a skill.

So there you go. If you run in to a spirit, take deep weed.
nick012000
QUOTE (fistandantilus3.0)
good call, sounds like good reasoning. Does the astral combat skill required being awakened? I would assume that it would, but I just thought I'd check, since drugs like deepweed and astral shallows can make mundaes astrally percieve, and therefore capable of practicing/learning a skill.

So there you go. If you run in to a spirit, take deep weed.

You have to be Awakened to astrally percieve while taking deepweed. wink.gif
fistandantilus4.0
sorry, isn't that the effect of Deepweed, making mundanes astrally percieve?
nick012000
No, deepweed forces the Awakened to astrally perceive, even if they normally lack the ability.
hyzmarca
Drones and vehicles resist the mage but get sliced and diced by the samurai.
MaxMahem
QUOTE (hyzmarca)
Drones and vehicles resist the mage but get sliced and diced by the samurai.

I agree, Vehicles and Drones can prove to be a very potent counter to spirits. There high armor and body makes them pretty resistant to magical attacks (even ones that only face half there armor), and they can mount potent enough weapons to give even powerful spirits a scare.

I don't agree that Sam's have it easy vrs drones and vehicles though. If anything it is more difficult for them, as most of there weapons will face the drone/vehicles full armor raiting, and since they don't take stun damage, that armor is effectivly hardened. Also, any weapon that can hurt a powerful spirit can turn a Sam into mush.
nick012000
But the Sam will be packing grenades, and can chunky salsa the vehicle into schrapnel. Just roll the grenade under the undercarriage...
Crusher Bob
Yes, so notice the typical system problem of things that have hardened armor either laugh at the attack or explode into bloody chunks, there is usually no middle ground.
Shadowmeet
Personally, I've always enjoyed the idea of a Talismonger enchanting bullets for a group.
It's another kind of high priced ammo, very expensive, and lots of fun.

I tend to have people go down that road.
Moon-Hawk
Are you talking about using bullets as expendable anchoring foci?
Shadowmeet
I've done the expendable anchoring foci

I've also, at another time, ruled that the Talismongers made the bullets out of strange materials, carved them with runes, and basically made the bullets into a sort of Expendable Mini Weapon Focus.

It was a house rule, but it worked well, and the players, both mages and sams, enjoyed it.
Crusher Bob
If your game is of a more humorous bent, he takes genetically altered mice (that have human DNA added) infects them with some strain of HMVV, lets then get really hungry, them puts them into the anti-spirit mouse gun, which then fires them off at the offending spirit. Hopefully the mouse gun fires the mice fast enough so that they die on impact (and you donít have to dealt with Return of the Vampire Mice, Part Two) but the fraction of a second they survive while impacting the spirit gives it a world of hurt.
Azralon
Lessee if I remember my SR3 anchoring focus rules.

Virginal telesma (lead + orichalcum slug) with a touch-range Detect Spirits in the trigger event and the touch-range version of Slay Spirit as the effect.

Of course, at that point it's almost more efficient to just manually throw the whole clip at the bugger without even bothering with the firearm itself.
Moon-Hawk
QUOTE (Azralon)
Of course, at that point it's almost more efficient to just manually throw the whole clip at the bugger without even bothering with the firearm itself.

That is, potentially, some very ugly drain.
And a very stupid way for an enchanter to be killed by a force 1 watcher.
Azralon
I don't remember anchoring foci causing drain upon use. Wasn't that one of the benefits?
Moon-Hawk
QUOTE (Azralon @ Jan 19 2006, 04:31 PM)
I don't remember anchoring foci causing drain upon use.  Wasn't that one of the benefits?

Nope. Anchoring foci always cause drain when they're used. No matter how far away the enchanter is or what he's doing. That's why I never liked them.
I'm sorry, I don't have books so I can't quote a page number, so this is all IIRC, but I'm pretty confident.

edit: I'm wondering if, in SR4, it will change to the way you think it works. That makes it a lot more powerful, though.
Shadowmeet
Sorry, I should have clarified.

Mine was a Talismonger house rule for 4th, not third.
Azralon
QUOTE (Moon-Hawk)
QUOTE (Azralon @ Jan 19 2006, 04:31 PM)
I don't remember anchoring foci causing drain upon use.† Wasn't that one of the benefits?

Nope. Anchoring foci always cause drain when they're used. No matter how far away the enchanter is or what he's doing. That's why I never liked them.

Wow, then I'm of the same opinion.
Magus
Just Keep a Ghoul on hand for the Troll Sammie to swing as a club!! (referencing old thread) The Ghoul is dual natured as is the spirit, instant Weapon Foci for the Mundane!! Hey- Hey!!
Lagomorph
One thing mundanes always have against mages is FAB
RunnerPaul
QUOTE (Lagomorph)
One thing mundanes always have against mages is FAB

Curious use of the word "always". I take it you can get cans of FAB at any local stuffer shack in your games?
Kerberos
QUOTE (Lagomorph)
One thing mundanes always have against mages is FAB

What's "FAB"?
Moon-Hawk
Fluorescing Astral Bacteria. See Magic in the Shadows.
RunnerPaul
"Fat" Astral Bacteria. It's a dual-natured single celled organism that as a byproduct of it's metabolic processes, produces long chains of protein that extend out past the bacteria's cell membrane.

The stuff's harmless on the mundane plane, you could suspend an aresol of the stuff in the air and not even notice. However, because it's dual natured, and the long chains of protien allow the bacteria to interact with each other, a cloud of FAB is a tangible living organism on the Astral Plane.

The original FAB was coded with a gene that produced proteins that glowed when exposed to UV. This allowed an observer on the mundane plane track an astrally projecting being as they displaced the dual natured bacteria cloud. However, nastier variations of the bacteria were developed shortly after. One version literally "eats" magic.
Moon-Hawk
QUOTE (RunnerPaul)
"Fat" Astral Bacteria.

Am I on crack, or are you?
FAB strain I dies when an astral form passes through it, releasing flourescing material that allows a mundane to detect the ghostly outline of an astral form.
Strain II acts as an astral barrier, but it can be displaced by an astral form (potentially also causing an outline, where there is no FAB) but is more effective when contained in pipes or walls. If they can't be displaced, then they're an effective barrier. Plus, they'll still glow so sensors can detect intrusion attempts.
Strain III moves around, eats magic, very nasty.
FrankTrollman
Well, the original version happened in previous editions when auras were impermeable. So a FAB cloud was an astral wall. It was ust sufficiently awakened to count as a solid living thing on the astral plane. So companies had pipes of the stuff around secure installations acting like an adamantine cage in the astral plane (and a mildly stinky plumbing system on the physical plane).

Then 3rd edition happened, and one of the big stealth changes to the magic system was that now auras had become semi-permeable, and astrally projecting characters could then pass through living things. Then the FAB became a dual natured object and merely acted as an astral intrusion alert system rather than as a wall. Suddenly, FAB was being pumped into rooms instead of piped through exterior walls.

Of course, most of the time when people talk about FAB they actually mean Strain III FAB - which is the really dangerous stuff. It's a bacteria that grows by eating whatever happens to be next to it - on the astral plane. So for any nearby astral forms, it's like a flesh eating bacteria or a cloud of cutter nanites, but on the physical plane it's completely inert. That's stuff that once released basically kills every astral and dual natured thing in the area, and has no visible effect on the physical plane. It's too small and too numerous for even the most powerful spirit to seriously challenge it. Strain III FAB has been largely unchanged in its effects by the changes to the way magic works in various editions.

-Frank
Crusher Bob
QUOTE (Kerberos)
QUOTE (Lagomorph @ Jan 19 2006, 12:58 PM)
One thing mundanes always have against mages is FAB

What's "FAB"?

Fuel-Air Bomb.
Once you get tired of the GM hitting your poor hacker with one unstoppable magical threat after the other, you can turn a local LPG farm into a large fuel-air bomb, thus completely destroying the campaing setting (and hopefully any nearby uppity spirits as well). Then you can start a new game where unstoppable magical threats don't come out of the woodwork to bother poor Mr. Hacker. grinbig.gif
PBTHHHHT
Heh, hey crusher, that's the same thing I was thinking at first. The fuel air bomb. Forget the bacteria, the bomb will solve all problem with mages... biggrin.gif
RunnerPaul
And unlike the astral bacteria, fuel air bombs would be commonly available to any mundane. The only hard part is getting the fuel suspended as a fine mist in the air, and even that isn't that hard.
hyzmarca
QUOTE (Moon-Hawk @ Jan 19 2006, 11:36 AM)
QUOTE (Azralon @ Jan 19 2006, 04:31 PM)
I don't remember anchoring foci causing drain upon use.  Wasn't that one of the benefits?

Nope. Anchoring foci always cause drain when they're used. No matter how far away the enchanter is or what he's doing. That's why I never liked them.

There were four advantages to anchoring in SR3.

First, you could repeatedly recast the spell in safety while throwing your entire spellpool at it untill you got an absurd number of successes. This would still be the case in SR4 except without the spellpool. Edge makes a half-decent substitute.

Second, you could throw your entire spellpool into the drain without worry since all spellcasting successes have been pregenerated. This is impossible in SR4.

Third, casting the spell from the focus could be a free action rather than a complex one, if it requires an action at all. This is still the case in SR4

Fourth, you need not worry about limitations. You can cast your exclusive for drain fetished for karma spell into an anchoring focus and then leave your fetish at home wihtout worry. You could cast as a free action instead of an exclusive complex action yet still have the drain benefit of exclusivity. This is still the case for fetishes but exclusive limits don't exist in SR4.
warrior_allanon
QUOTE (RunnerPaul)
And unlike the astral bacteria, fuel air bombs would be commonly available to any mundane. The only hard part is getting the fuel suspended as a fine mist in the air, and even that isn't that hard.

its not a "fuel air bomb" its a Fuel Air Explosive, (FAE) and try putting LPG into two splash mini-grenades followed by white phosphorus....talk about turning up the heat :evil
Clyde
Tasers, stick-n-shock ammo, stun batons and other elctrical weapons all HALVE the armor ratings of whatever they hit. A spirit has to be pretty high force before its immune to that kind of damage. Tasers are cheap now, too. Any "elemental damage" really - lasers will probably count as well. This is an old trick from prior editions.

If your mundane has some magically oriented friends (really good friends) you can have them bind a spirit and order it to obey your commands or serve as an astral bodyguard. Obviously doesn't work all the time, but if you have to leave your magical support behind for some reason . . . .

chazuli
I know a weapon focus will bypass the Immunity that spirits have, but what about a weapon made from orichalcum? It is a magical substance... what if one had a weapon made of that magical substance? Wouldn't that bypass the Immunity? Granted it would be awful expensive, but a mundane could wield a weapon made of orichalcum.

Best,
Charles Millar
Vaevictis
QUOTE (hyzmarca)
There were four advantages to anchoring in SR3. {...}

They're also sexy when you're using an anchoring focus made by someone else, as they take the drain instead of you.

Obviously, you have to be careful about frying them, but was pretty neato keen to carry around an increased reflexes anchoring focus and be able to activate it on demand without having to worry about the nasty deadly drain. More expensive (by far) than a sustaining focus, but you can deactivate it to slip through wards and don't have to worry about resisting deadly drain during the run. Also nice when someone's dropped 2-3 neurostun grenades on your low-body mage and he can't risk casting high power spells because he only has one box left on the stun track (ie, think anchored mana bolt or stunball or something).

IMO, they're a little expensive for what you get, but they're still very useful.

fenikso
Looks like Assault rifle with EX-explosives, short bursts and called shot works just fine grinbig.gif .
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